The month of MAY brings with it the MIGHT to move back to our origin; i.e. Mother Nature.
The rising temperature and the vacationing kids give us the much-needed opportunity to focus on improving our connect with Nature; the HUMAN-NATURE RELATIONSHIP.
A relationship that goes beyond all. A bond that stays unaffected by time and technology. A connection, rather an inter-connection that teaches us adaptability; an important life skill.
While living in an urban setting, we are constantly in a state of being busy. This leads to not just nutrient deficiencies in our body but also a deficiency that cannot be made good by popping in tablets or correcting our food habits. It is the deficiency of nature.
Author Richard Louv termed this as ‘NATURE DEFICIT DISORDER’ in his famous book ‘Last Child In The Woods’. This disorder increases as we continue to live in the paradox. The paradox which is self-created by us; humans.
There are a thousand things that we complain about in a day. One thing that we constantly complain about is the pace of our life. It is a paradox that we complain quite boastfully. Perhaps because, being busy is being valued today. This is why perhaps, when we have an opportunity to choose between fast and slow, we are more likely to choose a faster pace. The need to feel valued in an ever-evolving world takes over the desire to pace down with nature. Mostly while being on a fast-paced journey, we compromise our bond with nature. Because nature never rushes through its deeds.
Imagine nature rushing through the seasonal change. Imagine if nature decides to cancel the pre-monsoon showers and just crash through our lives with heavy floods.
What if trees drop their fruits pre-maturely, would we be able to consume as many fruits pre-season or store and distribute them without damage?
What if the river beckons to acknowledge the presence of rocks and crashes through our world?
If nature takes the impatient and insensible route to deeds and accomplishments, our world would definitely come crashing.
Isn’t this a gentle reminder that long-lasting success and gratification cannot be accomplished by fast-paced actions? We need to pace down our deeds and actions to be able to work harmoniously with nature. Harmony in terms of doing things at a natural pace. Harmony that comes by taking small steps. Steps that are more steady and powerful in our growth as compared to those rushed ones that lead to success quite fast.
Because a fast-track path leads to success that tends to fade faster.
As it fades, WE FEEL THE NEED TO HEAL.
Our healing process is mostly about lifestyle correction and stress management. Ironically the path that we choose to achieve this, is mostly fast-paced too. It includes unnatural ways of changing food habits and making forced food choices leading to fast and shimmering results. But sadly it weakens our bond with nature.
Because FAST IS NEVER NATURAL.
As our bond with nature weakens, it starts reflecting on our mental health. That’s when we scout and head to a place where nature blossoms abundantly and to its purest form. If it is the peak summer in May, people move closer to the mountains.
As they ascend in altitude, the temperature dips and the liveliness quotient rises.
The month of May not just encourages tourism but pushes people to move out of their urban settings to move back to their roots and connect with nature and heal. As they heal, the way they think, feel and respond to other people changes. It is amazing to see how our bond with nature reflects upon all our relationships; personal and professional.
It is well known that nature has a role to play in human survival and development. Nature not just helps us re-energise ourselves and calm our anxiety but foster our curiosity.
Isn’t seeing thousands of birds migrate to India during summer without GPS and still not losing their way magical?
Do we not wonder how leaves grow in thousands of different shapes, colors and textures without a strategy and planning? Do we not feel wonderful smelling vibrant blooms radiating amidst dense forest where human life is scant awe-inspiring? This feeling of awe is what keeps us lively. The day we stop wondering why, we would stop exploring. And the day we stop exploring, we would enter a monotonous circle of doing things and feel less buoyant.
To better understand, here’s quoting an excerpt from an article in HBR mentioning a University of Michigan psychologist Ethan Kross who defined AWE as “the wonder we feel when we encounter something powerful that we can’t easily explain.” Often the things which bring us awe have an element of vastness and complexity. Experiencing something bigger than us keeps us grounded and also push us to think beyond the usual. And as far as we are motivated to think beyond the usual, we are inspired to live and not just survive.
We recently visited Madikeri, more popularly known as Coorg, famous for its coffee plantations and everything around it. The green woody slopes, colourful scenery, misty mountains, cascading falls, dense tropical forest, coffee and spice plantations helped us refresh all our five senses.
Seeing hundreds of thousands of Silver Oak trees standing tall and steady for hundreds of years helping the coffee plantations survive better.
Seeing the leaves shy away even before the raindrop touches them. Enjoying the aroma of coffee plantation. Tasting local spices and fruits. Listening to migratory birds and enjoying the tree branches dance to the tune of wind and squirrels. Touching the water cascading through the valley and walking through a stream of fresh water. All this and much more made us awe-inspired by the untouched natural beauty of Madikeri.
It helped us move out of our social media rabbit hole and calm down. It helped us concentrate on our immense inner power to be humble to the universe around including our fellow humans. It also made us wonder how in nature, nothing repeats exactly the same. Every single tree in the forest was unique in its shape and structure. The sound of the wind wasn’t same as the previous time ever.
It taught us the biggest life lesson; However much a green cover we grow around us, we need to keep going back to nature in its purest form to ensure our curiosity never settles and we always are powered to live.
May is mighty! Nature is mightier than everything else!!
By Ruchi Adlakha