In modern times, many adults as well as children suffer from “nature- deficit disorder”- a phrase coined by Richard Louv. It means lack of awareness and ability to understand the life around us. Children, these days, do not have the scope to play undisturbed in the lap of nature, exploring forests, wading spontaneously in streams, climbing tress etc as fewer natural spaces are now accessible to children. Their lives are protected owing to the worry of parents about perils from strangers, insects and germs causing various diseases. The amount of time spent in field trips and recess is also cut down by the schools.
But studies reveal that nature has immense positive effects on human mind, human health and intelligence. Children, who can connect with nature are more creative and smarter compared to those who remain homebound and play with gadgets only. Children suffering from lack of concentration, obesity, asthma should turn to nature for improved health conditions. All we need to do is broaden our definition of nature needs. As 50 percent of the world’s population is now residing in urban areas, mere conservation of nature is not enough. In order to protect the biodiversity it is essential that we create natural habitats in our neighborhoods.
Many of us feel great spending time in a beautiful natural setting, but we don’t go beyond that. If you are capable of feeling that special connection with nature and desire to deepen it, let your creativity guide you. More encounters with nature will not only make you discover your true self but also empower you to enrich your life. Once you start trusting nature as your true friend and spend time, nature will become your spiritual path. You will be blessed with the serene realization that despite the ups and downs of life, you are never completely alone.
Here are some suggestions that will enable you to strengthen your bond with nature.
- Commitment is mandatory – in the 21st century both our lives and minds are busy. You need to be determined to take out time to connect with nature. So the first important step towards establishing a spiritual connection with nature is to be committed to do so.
- Spend alone-time with nature – When we are in human company, it is very natural to talk to each other. So, in such condition it becomes difficult to talk to nature. Solitude is a must.
- Search for a good, peaceful place and sit there – You can choose any place that you like – a place that will give you positive vives.
- Relax, observe and communicate – Admire and appreciate your surroundings. Learn to notice and appreciate the minute details like the gurgle of streams, chirping of birds, sunrise and sunsets. See, smell, hear, feel and allow yourself to be loved by nature. Try talking to the objects of nature that draw your attention. You can seek insight from nature into matters you are struggling with and let nature be your teacher. You will be excited to see the joy and wonder it will bring to you.