Waking Up Is Hard to DO!

We are a part of nature, not apart from nature. This concept is easy to grasp in theory but difficult to embody.

Academic achievement, accumulation of cool stuff, an ever-growing personal factoid database, social status - these are the crown jewels of what our society bases personal value upon.  If these areas of endeavor are habitually visited without pause, reflection, and checking in with our gut, they usually act as surrogates. This proxy, blind to our authentic needs, morphs under the radar into numbing insulation. A gap grows between our little self and infinite self – the web-of-life, our planetary kin.

So many of the chronic problems unique to our amazing species are environmentally rooted physiological problems. A robust body of empirical research underlines the imperative nature of this connection.

I’ve spent the better half of my adult life personally and professionally investigating this disconnect, having grappled with many a challenge rooted in this dis-union myself. Homo-sapiens are the only species with the cognitive ability to choose to cooperate, or not, with the rest of our ecosystem. Interspecies cooperation is homeostasis in action.

Nothing is static in nature, hence the need to check-in with our personal inner compass often. How else to stay on an authentic course? The distractions of consumer culture are infinite. As you build your knowledge base of what is needed to be healthy and awake, discernment frees you! You can draw your life outside the box, cherry-picking your genuine goals, friendships, stuff, and social accouterments.

The strategy of re-calling our relationship within this fantastic family of plant, animal, and all the elements that comprise our world, is simple and complex.

Earth calls us to pay attention. To what? How so? Those chronic ailments endemic to our society: depression, anxiety, obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, drug addiction, are more often than not, rooted in this sensory disconnect. These maladies communicate to us just like a compass does to a lost sailor if we pay attention. Sickness can also be guidance. Nature is not a panacea to our ills. However, it will provide a personal road map to what we need to live a full and joyful life. When we set our intention and attention to the job of noticing what is going on within our whole body and the world holding us at that very moment, we notice the sensory anchors that tether us to earth. Our mind alone cannot do this for us. Once welcomed into our consciousness as valid and real, our many sensory anchors paradoxically open our mind and heart to what it is that we truly need.

Navigating the constantly shifting landscape of our lives requires our inner compass to awaken. We do this by simply paying attention without judgment or expectation.

Easier said than done! This life-long creative endeavor, one that each of us embarks on every morning as our eyes open, calls us to take action. That’s Nature’s way: waking us up through our sensory lifelines, anchors into the moment…pleasurable, painful, or confusing. This is where awake is!