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“I go to nature to be soothed and healed,
and to have my senses be put in tune once more.”
My childhood consisted of many touches with nature as I lived next to the jungle in Panama listening to the monkeys, seeing the banana trees, and watching the red-footed geckos climb our picture window every night. My favorite thing to do when I went outside to play was to touch the millions of small ferns in the grass that would close up when you touched them.
My sisters and I enjoyed wandering through the forests in the mountains in Germany where we lived for several years. We collected lightening bugs in jars and watched them in our bedroom at night when we lived in Virginia. And I’ll never forget the smell of the fresh pine needles on the sandy forest floor of our playgrounds in Georgia.
I’m currently reading Last Child in the Woods: Saving our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder by Richard Louv and it has been such an eye opening book on the power of nature in our lives and how we are harming ourselves body, mind, and spirit by avoiding nature.
This morning, my three year old was sitting in the large second story window in our family room gazing outside with interest. I sat down next to him and asked him what he saw. He replied that he saw “rocks and the house (next door).” It was dark and cloudy out this morning so I asked him what he saw in the sky. He replied, “Um, clouds….but no rain.” He had already observed the day. In his young life, he is already feeling an interest in nature. As a mother, it is my job to nurture that interest.
Nature is God’s cathedral. I’ve recently read two books about near death experiences (Visions of Glory and the Message) and I was so interested to read of their experiences in learning about nature from the other side.
“To me, one so inexperienced in the deep and divine things of the spiritual world, all of this was delicious to me. I was thrilled to experience these things and felt love coming from everything I touched–even the rocks, leather, and wood. I delighted in the love that I felt flowing from myself back into them. It seemed that everything that had been created by God had its story and was pleased that I had been able to hear them. I only heard contentment and praise of God from these things.” -Visions of Glory
“We began to walk down a pathway lined with varied flowers and foliage. I stopped to look closer at these beautiful plants. I knelt and gently touched the petals and greenery. I felt a surge within me, as if these creations were seeking to say to my soul, ‘We too, are creations of God. WE have sought with diligence to create beauty and splendor of celestial magnitude. Have we done so? Have we filled your heart with joy in seeing us? Have we not fulfilled the measure of our creating?” ~Lance Richardson in The Message
Interestingly, the scriptures also mention this too:
D&C 128: 23 “Let the mountains shout for joy, and all ye valleys cry aloud; and all ye seas and dry lands tell the wonders of your Eternal King! And ye rivers, and brooks, and rills, flow down with gladness. Let the woods and all the trees of the field praise the Lord; and ye solid rocks weep for joy! And let the sun, moon, and the morning stars sing together, and let all the sons of God shout for joy! And let the eternal creations declare his name forever and ever! And again I say, how glorious is the voice we hear from heaven, proclaiming in our ears, glory, and salvation, and honor, and immortality, and eternal life; kingdoms, principalities, and powers!”
The rocks talk. The trees are speaking to our souls. Nature really is God’s Cathedral. No wonder we feel so refreshed and renewed after spending time among God’s creations.
Don’t worry about getting wet or dirty. Dance in the rain. Taste the rain. Stop and feel the breeze.
Enjoy this TED talk by Bernie Krause regarding nature:[ted id=1788]