by Bill Schwingel,  Interior Alignment® Master Teacher

Fireflies or lightning bugs, depending on where you live in the U.S., have always brought a sense of awe and wonder to my mind. I can remember as a young boy waiting at dusk for them to begin to sparkle in the back yard, wanting to see the first one before anyone else.

While I didn’t realize it at the time, I believe this was my first exposure to the impact nature can have on our souls – a sense of excitement and anticipation, a mysterious magic shared from an often unseen world, an inspiration for beauty and a reminder that peace and insight can come if we only sit, watch and listen.

Over the years, I’ve tried to open my heart more and more to nature and have found messages and delight in often unexpected places. Nature has become a refuge for me, and as such the spirits within it have become my guides.

Nature spirits have been part of the collective unconscious for hundreds if not thousands of years as seen in the stories shared by cultures around the world. In modern day, they have captured our imagination through song and story as well. They remind us to be carefree and authentic, respectful of nature, and to tap into that childhood wonder that seemed to come so easily so long ago.

In these times, though, it can be difficult to imagine nature spirits as a part of our daily lives. So I’d like to offer some ways that have helped me to help break through these self-imposed blocks.

  1. Step outside. Yep, it’s that easy. Go outside of whatever building you may be spending most of your day in and look up at the sky. Watch the clouds, breathe in the air and pay attention to how you feel with the sun on your face or the wind blowing about you. The sky is everywhere so anyone can do this. Now pay attention to how your body reacts, how it relaxes, your shoulders drop and your breath becomes steady and rhythmic.
  2. Touch nature. Feel the soft texture of a flower petal or leaf, hold a blade or two of grass in your hand, run your fingers along the bark of a tree. This will not only take your mind off whatever may have been swirling in there, but also start to experience the wonder and variety of nature around you.
  3. Study an animal. Look for a wild creature – a chipmunk, squirrel, bird, cat, dog, even a bug – and watch it. Pay attention to how it moves – its body as it runs, its head as it listens, its nose and mouth as it explores its environment. You’ll find yourself asking questions about why it’s doing what it’s doing. Once you’ve come up with an answer, even if it isn’t the “right” answer, consider if there’s something you could be doing like that animal is doing that might help you in some way.

If you do this regularly, I promise you it will make a difference in how you feel each day. It may even remind you of your own childhood, walking in nature, connecting with that sense of delight, awe and wonder.

The spirit of nature is all around us, ready to offer guidance, if only we open ourselves to its mysteries.

Bill Schwingel, Interior Alignment® Master Teacher

Bill Schwingel is a Master Teacher of Interior Alignment(R) providing feng shui and space clearing consultations for the past two decades. Based outside of Chicago, he also offers certifications in Instinctive Feng Shui(TM) and Seven Star Blessing(TM) Space Clearing. Learn more by visiting him at www.fengshui-24.com.

 

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