Here is Dharma's list of life lessons learned when we spend time in nature.
1. Lesson from trees - The leaves on a tree start off as new buds, then they are young and bright green, as they mature they get bigger and they're color deepens. Then as they grow old, they turn magnificent colors, then, brown, and begin to fall off as winter approaches. From the trees, we can learn acceptance and non-resistance. A tree doesn't resist the changes to its leave, the tree accepts these changes and allows live to flow naturally.
2. Lessons we learn from birds - Birds flying through the sky has long represented limitless freedom for humans. Flying also represents what is possible for each of us if we learn to let go of our fears, just as the baby bird must do when it flies for the first time. We must trust ourselves and our innate intelligence.
3. Lessons we learn from pets - Nothing can teach us more about love than the family pet. Pets give us unconditional love...love without any expectation of getting something in return. "The true nature of forgiveness is forgetting and letting go of grudges. We learn uninhibited, unreserved affection by giving our full attention. Understanding love is a feeling and doesn’t require words. Love is felt in the heart by making eye connection, being in someone’s presence and through physical touch."
4. Lessons from ants and bees. These insects know what community really is, They work to together to support the greater good - each one with his/her own task to do. From them we can learn to share responsibility and give the world our special gift, whatever it might be. We each have a calling and when we recognize it, share it with others, and help make the world a little better we, in turn, help ourselves. Just as the ants and bees do.
5. Lessons from bamboo. Bamboo is strong, yet flexible. It thrives even under some pretty poor conditions. And does the bamboo compare itself unfavorably to the maple tree which is larger, has leaves that change color, and produces yummy sap for maple syrup? Of course, not! The thought of plants, trees, and animals comparing themselves to one another is ridiculous! Yet humans do it all the time. Each of us has our own gifts and our own beauty that is uniquely our own.
6. Lessons from the sky. No matter what storms are brewing or passing by, we know that it is transient; that above the dark clouds the sky is always blue and the sun is always shining. The night sky teaches us that darkness always follows the dawn. For us to appreciate the good and light in our life, we must also learn to accept and even appreciate the darkness.
7. Lessons from rain. Water is necessary for all life. In addition to keeping everything hydrated, water cleanses away the negativity of the world and allow a space of clarity. rain washes away the dirt and grime...literally and figuratively. Showering and bathing cleanses humans of dirt and grime, but they also restore positive energy. Ever notice how much better you feel after relaxing in tub or taking a refreshing shower? That is the power and gift of water. "Bathe with the intent of cleansing your body, spirit and mind."
8. Lessons from wind. Not everything that exists can be heard or seen. Some things just need to be felt. The wind teaches us to go beyond our five senses and to learn to experience things that are felt, like trusting our "gut" or instinct.
9. Lessons from mountains. Mountains can teach us to stand tall, firm, and majestic. No matter what life throws our way, we can remain strong, just like the mountains when faces with avalanches, rainstorms, and water erosion. Our emotional GPS or guidance system should be strong, like the mountain, and able to withstand the actions and reactions of others. and finally,
10. Lessons learned from flowers. Every animal, plant, and human has its own fragrance, color and beauty. The zebra doesn't look like a frog and the rose doesn't look like a daisy. Yet all of them are beautiful and serve a purpose. They don't discriminate by showing their beauty only to a select few. They willingly and gladly share who they are with everyone who will take the time to look. They share their beauty with friends, strangers, and even their enemies. "True compassion and love comes from sharing your beauty with all you meet."
Dharma is pretty amazing! And after today's lesson, everything seemed so much clearer; how each of us, every living thing, are all interconnected and how the world is so much better when we learn from one another. Mother nature is indeed a powerful teacher!
Until tomorrow, I wish you all the beauty of nature and, of course,