Wellness—it’s precious—and don’t we all want it? We commit plenty of time and dollars to be well on multiple levels—physical, mental and emotional. These days, however, living in a technology-driven society, it’s easy to disconnect from nature and forget that our own health is a reflection of the health of our little piece of the planet. Nature doesn’t send texts saying “HELP ME” when it’s not looking so good out there.
In the big picture, personal wellness and the wellness of nature—the well-being of our shared Earth home—are inextricably connected. Ultimately, people and planet exist in a dynamic, reciprocal partnership of well-being. It’s up to humankind to remember that people are part of nature, and to protect the life support system given to us by nature—soil, water and air. Our physical bodies can’t survive without this trio humming in harmony. Ecology is paramount to economy in the scheme of basic survival. Dollars won’t mean much when there’s no water to drink. Who else aside from us can protect that which protects us?
Relaxation in nature is becoming part of it. Whatever you’re doing in nature—working in a garden, hiking, fishing —you may notice your mind lapsing into pause mode, thoughts dissolving into a deep, silent space. A moment of a still mind is worth every shovelful of compost you dig in, every row of tiny seeds that you plant, every mile you hike or ski. The closer the mind is synchronized with the vibration of the Earth, the more relaxed and quiet it becomes. Planet Earth vibrates at approximately eight cycles a second, 7.83 hertz, the Schumann Resonance. Spending time in nature, the cell phone left behind in the house, will offer relief from the billions of vibrations per second that have become the predominant electromagnetic bombardment in most environments. True, in an urban environment with cell phone towers on many rooftops and wi-fi connections in nearly every building, it may be impossible to escape the pervasive wireless frequencies, but the effect can be somewhat neutralized in the presence of the energies of plants. Pausing to sit or lie down for a few minutes on the earth will drain away tension and slow the noisy vibrations of the day. It helps the body to attune to a more natural environment and the mind to become clear and receptive.
Healthy Soil. Organic gardening is a satisfying way to connect with nature and the earth at home—with an attainable outcome of supporting both personal and planetary wellness. The thoughtful care one organic gardener gives to the earth benefits the health of the entire planet. The gardening process can fire up a renewed and vital connection with nature and the invisible higher order that helps shape life. Connecting with the wisdom of nature—nurturing nature—is nurturing ourselves. When we forget that we are part of nature, we destroy that which supports us. Our existence depends on nature.
Natural and organic gardening techniques restore weak and dying soils, reducing massive losses of the world’s topsoil. Soils made dead by chemical poisoning have little capacity to retain water, resulting in surface runoff. Building living soils with compost helps conserve the global water supply. Eliminating the use of herbicides, pesticides and fertilizers in food production prevents the accumulation of toxins in the food we eat and in tissues and organs in the body.
Healthy Water and Air. Confronted by massive environmental upheavals and devastation, finding solutions to foster wellness for humankind and nature may seem overwhelming. But there’s truly no limit for collective imagination and willingness to create new solutions. Nature’s wellness—and our own—faces serious threats nearly everywhere: take fracking (hydraulic fracturing for natural gas and oil) in New Mexico. The routine expenditure of water for every “frack” runs into millions of gallons. Clean water is mixed with hundreds of chemicals and forced miles into the earth vertically and/or horizontally. The same spent gallons of poisoned water come back out of the ground as toxic waste—often left in open, unlined evaporation ponds to contaminate water, air, and soil. Seepage and spills of poison fracking fluids, fires and explosions, air pollution, and depletion of pure water compromise and destroy the health of nature and the communities exploited and overrun by the industry.
What choice do we have? It’s time to assert our right to life and health and move forward as communities to embrace our collective future in creative partnership with nature. Together, we have an opportunity to create justice and local governance to wrest control of our lives from the corporations and politics that seem to be running the show and ruining our “place.” Mora County citizens, for example, have successfully adopted an ordinance for the right to self-government and a ban on oil and gas extraction in the county, protecting people and partnering with the planet.
Partnering with nature isn’t an arbitrary choice when it comes to health and well-being—partnership is imperative. People and planet become partners in wellness as we align with nature’s cycles and the rhythm of the cosmos. Planet Earth is resilient and will survive many extreme transformations as she has over billions of years. But, living life on the planet beyond renewable limits, destroying nature, not only impacts personal wellness, but threatens existence of the human species as we know it. Owning wellness, claiming a partnership with nature is a visionary gesture of respect, care and gratitude to our beautiful—and tremulous—Mother Earth.