By Amanda Monteiro, Collective Evolution
European research from the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Germany suggests that city dwellers who live near nature experience positive effects on their brains compared to their purely urban counterparts, especially on the amygdala, the brain’s integrative center for emotions, emotional behaviour, and motivation. When we think of stress or fear responses, we should be thinking of the amygdala.
This research should come as no surprise, since the physiological and psychological benefits of nature are well documented. In our article “How Walking In Nature Changes The Brain,” we explored the study led by Gregory Bratman, which suggested that being in nature can potentially change our brains and positively impact our health: Continue reading Research Shows What Living Near A Forest Can Do To The Human Brain
via Natural Blaze
Americans have an obsession with chopping down trees. Whether it’s over pruning their yards or the corporate paving of paradise to put up a parking lot, trees go down. Trees collapse during natural disasters like hurricanes and fires. In other countries, though, the presence of trees can be the difference of life or death.
A University of Vermont-led study of 300,000 children in 35 nations says kids whose watersheds have greater tree cover are less likely to experience diarrheal disease, the second leading cause of death for children under the age of five. Continue reading Trees Prevent Disease
By Carolanne Wright, Wake Up World
Want to bring out the very best in yourself? Science says spend more time in nature.
Richard Ryan, a professor of psychology and psychiatry at the University of Rochester, believes communing with nature far exceeds the benefits of easing stress and improving health — it also greatly influences our values and overall behavior as we go about our daily lives. Continue reading How Spending Time in Nature Makes Us Kinder and More Generous
By Lissa Rankin, Wake Up World
After five days on safari in South Africa with my mother on her “bucket list” trip, I felt inspired to write about my practice of interfacing with nature as an oracle, using my safari experience as an example. I shared my practice with several of the safari guides and park rangers I met, and after speaking to them, I wanted to offer a few more opportunities that can help you spiritualize any experience in nature, whether you’re on safari or just going for a hike in the woods. Continue reading 6 Spiritual Practices to Radically Deepen Your Experience in Nature
By Rachel Horton White, Wake Up World
Have you ever noticed that our own lives are reflected in nature? That we are actually so connected to our Earth that all that exists within it can be viewed as the macrocosm of our personal development as souls?
While connecting with the Earth the other day, literally putting my hands in the soil, I had a flash of insight about what I’d been experiencing internally… Continue reading How Personal Transformation Works: Just Observe the Natural World
By Sofia Adamson, Waking Times
Part of our lot as human beings on planet earth is dominion over the plant and animal kingdoms, and as a by-product of our economic and cultural heritage, we have largely become indifferent to the suffering of animals. An indicator of the cruelest aspects of our nature.
This systemic disrespect for nature and her creatures is part of, or symptomatic of, a larger problem with modern society, the institutionalized perception that we are separate and independent of our environment. This dualism is part of the division of consciousness that is often noted in ancient texts as well as contemporary discussions of the characteristics of human consciousness. Continue reading Signs of Consciousness, Sentience and Intelligence in Nature Demand Our Respect
By Christa Mackinnon, Wake Up World
“In the absence of the sacred, nothing is sacred. Everything is for sale.” ~ Oren R. Lyons, Faithkeeper of the Turtle clan
When writing my latest book, I was surprised how difficult I found it to write a ‘short chapter about nature and sacredness’ for a readership that would be mainly urban. Now that the indigenous movement against the completion of the Dakota Access Pipeline brought the issue to the fore, I was reminded how urgently we need to re-connect with the sacred aspect of nature, not only because we face an ecological crisis and need to stand up in vast numbers to the ever increasing destruction of natural habitat and resources driven, but also because the separation from the nature aspect of ourselves, from our earth roots and souls, is contributing extensively to the dis-connection from our own wild nature and to our mental, emotional and physical suffering and dis-enchantment. Continue reading Waking Up to the Sacred in Nature and Reclaiming Our Earth Soul
By Karen Foster, Natural Blaze
Superbugs are without a doubt a major threat affecting all health care systems. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection is caused by a type of staph bacteria that’s become resistant to many of the antibiotics used to treat ordinary staph infections. Despite attempts by new antibiotics to neutralize the effects of MRSA, none have succeeded. But nature did.
The red berries of the Brazilian peppertree — a weedy, invasive species common in Florida — contain an extract with the power to disarm dangerous antibiotic-resistant staph bacteria, scientists at Emory University have discovered.
The journal Scientific Reports is publishing the finding, made in the lab of Cassandra Quave, an assistant professor in Emory’s Center for the Study of Human Health and in the School of Medicine’s Department of Dermatology. Continue reading Nature Comes To The Rescue Again – Peppertree Disarms Most Dangerous Bacteria
By Jessie Klassen, Wake Up World
Do you hear the voice of nature?
Intellectually, it is easy to understand the many reasons to change the way that we live upon our earth. Erratic and unpredictable weather, depleted soils, unsafe drinking water, deforestation and vanishing wildlife are all obvious signs that the society we have created is unsustainable.
But even with this glaring evidence in front of us, many people are still unwilling to change or even feel that there is no problem to fix. Or worst of all, they feel that they are unable to make a difference in such a big, dysfunctional society. For many, they still cling to outdated ideals and beliefs like an old security blanket, hoping if they just stay hiding beneath it, the problems will disappear. That, or they are too uncomfortable with letting go of aspects of their lives that they feel are necessary to their happiness. It all seems so much easier to carry on with business as usual. Continue reading Speak to the Trees – A Spiritual Perspective on Nature
By Christina Sarich, The Mind Unleashed
Taoism offers a unique way of viewing the world. Though it is often taught as the “Way of Nature,” Tao, translated means simply, “the Way.” As its greatest teacher, Lao-Tzu explained, nature contains polarities. Tao creates and nourishes everything in the Cosmos, and yet It appears to “do nothing” (wu wei in Chinese), which means that Tao, being spontaneous, has no intent or impulse to strive, to act and to react as we humans do. The Tao simply allows things to take their own course. The acceptance of this dual nature of the world can help put us at ease, but only when we truly understand how polarity works to manifest our “seeming” reality. Continue reading Embracing the Way of Nature: Polarity and the Tao