We are officially in Summer! The solstice was just a couple of weeks ago, on June 20th, the longest day of the year. The day when the northern pole of Earth points as close to the sun as it gets. Usually, this is the warmest time of the season, given the connection to the sun. A wonderful reason to celebrate!
And celebrate we will, with the weekend leading into the 4th of July being imminent!
All things that go with Summer – friends and families getting together, and of course remembering those loved ones with whom we have celebrated in the past but who are no longer here in the physical, but will be here in spirit – are upon us.
I’ve learned over the years that many families plan on using this time of the year to get together when other times of the year are not possible. For one thing, you can travel by car without worry of “bad” weather . . . well at least not snow!
For example, the family of a friend of mine is having a family reunion in upstate New York, where the centerpiece will be the casting of a deceased loved one’s ashes on a spot in Nature that he loved so much. While it is true that, as Jim Morrison once sang, that “Nobody here gets out alive,” it is also true that every spirit/soul does get out alive – for spirits we are, having a human experience.
Yes, it is that time of year when the weather just invites us to be outside. Speaking of which – I just came across an article about “forest bathing,” which generally speaking involves a walk in the woods to shed worldly woes, and combat stress. It’s a custom in Korea and Japan. Suffice it to say that the benefits are huge. In fact, if you can believe it, the benefits are so well established that forest bathing is covered under medical insurance in many countries (outside the U.S., where citizen health is not considered a human right).
Many of us know from experience that spending time in a forest or other forms of Nature, can not only lower stress, but also reduce pulse rate and blood pressure, which naturally improves the functioning of the nervous system, and the body overall.
One Stanford University study had participants do a memory test before and after either a Nature walk or a walk in an urban area. Those who walked in Nature improved their performance on the second memory test, while the urban walkers showed no improvement.
The same test also tended to demonstrate improved vitality after a walk in Nature. It was not the exercise so much as the actual communing with Nature.
A walk in the woods can also reduce negative thoughts. After all, how can one stroll through the woods, look at all those beautiful green trees and flowing streams, listen to birds and see the butterflies, without feeling anything but uplifted.
If you can’t make it to the country sometime soon, note this: those same studies showed that people who live in urban areas where there are parks and greenery (e.g., Central Park in Manhattan) had less mental stress and illness.
No surprise then that whenever I do conferences, the best events – in terms of actual results – are those that include a walk in Nature, and/or activities away from the city. Yes, it’s good to get away from the maddening crowd, and let the signs in Nature help us connect with loved ones on the Other Side.
Interacting with Nature also helps us connect with our DPs (dead persons) via dreams, walks, and the opening of our minds and hearts.
Simply stated, the connection with Nature is more easily facilitated during the Summer. For Summer is that time to think like kids again, put a skip in your step, and, hopefully see, feel, or sense your loved ones in spirit walking by your side.
If a departed loved one enjoyed fishing, and there is a river, lake, or pond nearby, go there! You will be reminded of those times with your DP, which will facilitate your connection to him or her in Spirit. If your DP gardened, find a garden and walk by basking in the sun, while looking at all those colors and opening your heart. There are gardens everywhere, and I mean everywhere. Yes, even in the cities where city folks have rooftop gardens, or plots in the outer boroughs (like Brooklyn or Queens).
If you live near the ocean, and don’t usually go there, a gentle shame on you! Get into it! You are missing a lot, especially at sunrise or sunset.
I promise all of you who are feeling below par that getting into Nature will make whatever is hurting deep inside or making you feel lost, get better. Simply just breathing in all that is beautiful will be of benefit. This is what is truly important, and free!
Yes free! Nature is everywhere, and everywhere is where our departed loved ones exist. If there is a cost to get to a Nature spot that beckons you, spend the bucks. It will be worth it.
Speaking of traveling (which I so often do), I’ll be in Colorado in August. I intend to take a hike in the Rocky Mountains. A Colorado mountain high! Those mountains surely beckon me.
Also looking forward to seeing all you Massachusetts folks on 13th of July, with my event with Thomas John.
In sum, don’t let the Summer pass you by. Come out of the doldrums (if that’s where you are) and just have fun. You’ll enjoy, I promise.