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By Kimberly Sogge on June 26, 2021.
In recent years I have been exploring the importance of interconnection, particularly our deeply programmed evolutionary connections to the natural world, for physical and mental wellbeing.
In my own meditation practice for maintenance of my own emotional and physical health, I have turned to the work of the masters in the Thai Forest tradition of Buddhist meditation, who spent their lives cultivating awareness and mind training practices to assist in bringing out the best qualities in humanity.
In Canada, we are blessed with an abundance of pristine wilderness land and water. These resources are not only economic supports, they are our home. As there is generosity in nature all around us, ready to shelter, nourish, and support our growth and wellbeing, I wanted to offer some nature meditation practices here, to assist you in connecting to the supports that the Canadian environment makes so freely available to us. You do not need to be in the wilderness to access these practices or the support of nature. Step outside your workplace into the local park, walk along a body of water like the Rideau Canal or the Gatineau River, stop and take a moment to see the leaves or the snowflakes drifting down overhead.
You can download the recordings guiding you through these brief meditations, drawn directly from my teacher Mark Coleman’s book Awake in the Wild, below this post. Thank you to Mark Coleman and to the lineage of teachers who came before him and before me, for paying attention and seeing how much nature has to offer us in support of growth and wellbeing.
Explore meditation in Nature, guided by my teacher Mark Coleman, author of Awake in the Wild, using the New York Times VR app here. Explore Awake in the Wild practices adapted from Mark’s book, and narrated by Dr. Sogge.
Awake in the Wild: Mindfulness of Breath practice
Awake in the Wild: Meandering in Nature with awareness
Awake in the Wild: Taking a Sensory Break
Awake in the Wild: Reflecting on the Source (indoor practice)
Explore meditation in Nature practices, adapted from Communing with Nature: A guidebook to enhancing your relationship with the living earth by John Swanson, Ph.D., narrated by Dr. Sogge. (Recommendation: practice these one at a time over a number of weeks)
Communing with Nature: Centering
Communing with Nature: Grounding