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Finding Harmony in a Forest Cathedral

May 10, 2017

A walk through nature can be like entering an awe-inspiring medieval cathedral.

Or here, it reminds me of a mulched “sawdust trail” beckoning the wayward.

A bench awaits those with tired feet.

The gently swaying honeysuckle offers sweet whiffs like a censor.

God speaks through the whispers of wind and birds gently calling and cooing.

He leadeth me beside still waters.

I commune with the bossy birds, the fat squirrels, the spiders spinning shining webs, and the teeming insects busily at work in this old growth forest.

The dappled sun shining through the leafy canopy is rumored to restore the soul.

I am at peace.

Some say “Even five minutes around trees or in green spaces may improve health. Think of it as a prescription with no negative side effects that’s also free.”

Or perhaps we should call this forest-bathing*.

I call it, “He restores my soul.”

Amen.

***

*I’m told the Japanese coined a term for the benefits of spending time in forests: shinrin-yoku, which means something like taking in the forest atmosphere or “forest bathing.” Find out more about the health benefits here.

 ***

How and where do you best find relaxation, restoration, communion with God? How often? What helps you find harmony?

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From → Faith, Nature

10 Comments
  1. Beverly Silver permalink

    Hi Melodie, Thank you for those beautiful photos. They are exquisite! Beauty without words – and the few words you included are perfect! Beverly

  2. singinglady37 permalink

    Hi Melodie
    Thank you for such beautiful pictures to celebrate the beauty of God’s creation . xo Caro-Claire

  3. I have often thought of tall trees as God’s Cathedral. Although I live very close to the Atlantic Ocean beach, I find soul sustenance from the forest.

    You have expressed this thought eloquently in words and pictures, Melodie. Thank you!

  4. Both the ocean and the forest feed my soul. Thanks for checking in at the cathedral. 🙂 You might guess it is Park Woods near EMU.

  5. “Forest bathing.” Love it. This is a beautiful post. Thank you.

  6. Athanasia permalink

    Very good word-picture…”the gently swaying honeysuckle offers sweet whiffs like a censor”…once upon a time I was in an Episcopal cathedral for a wedding and the procession included a swinging thing (incensor?) with lovely smelling puffs wafting out. Just like your honeysuckle branches.

    • Athanasia, thanks for commenting. Yes, those swinging things was what I was referencing. Had to look it up. My spelling was evidently wrong, should have been censer and they are commonly used in Catholic services, but not always, at least in my experience. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/censer For those of us with some reaction to some perfumes, the whiffs can be overwhelming though.

      I believe they were used in Old Testament times of worship as well. Anyway, glad you enjoyed my attempt at description! Have a great weekend.

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