Friday, March 13, 2015
good words for what we do in the woods
Have you seen these words? Shinrin-yoku and friluftsliv.
I want to say that what we do out in the woods is genetic. Or could it be our heritage? I'm not sure if either of those apply. Certainly neither of us have the background that drove our hearts to spend time in the woods. I grew up in rural Pennsylvania, while the Big D had a more urban childhood.
Yet on a regular basis we habitually practice jugaad along with experiencing shinrin-yoku and friluftsliv. I was born in India and Dave's family came from Norway and Sweden a few generations ago. Maybe those three cultural concepts are woven somehow into our cells, our memories, our instincts.
Whatever it is I know that retreating to the woods is good for our spirit, our sanity, our relationship with each other and the natural environment. It is friluftsliv at it's finest, at least that is how I see it.
It is definitely good preventative medicine just like the concept of shinrin-yoku. The air sloughs off the stress of city-life, of impending commitments, of most everything that needs to be discarded.
We measure time from one cup of cocoa to the next. We get distracted by the migration of various birds and it is a place where these easy distractions are welcome. We count the stars and marvel at the patches of sunlight. We practice archery and write poems with sticks on the snow. We smell the earth as it thaws. We live for the the sky at day and the moon at night. We express gratitude with each and every breath.
Yes, I feel sappy today but I look to lofty thoughts that will float the ache out of my head. And it also helps me avoid the laundry.