What is the spirituality of nature? Is it easier to ask what is the impact of the awe of nature? How does it help lift us out of our lives into a resonance with something greater than ourselves? How does being in nature bring the interconnected weave of life to light? How might this be an anecdote to depression, anxiety, the isolation many teens feel in this world. All of these questions could be seen as spiritual questions, but they don’t have to be.
When I watched the end of the documentary Screenagers, I wanted more. As the family stepped out into nature, off their phones, there was a hint of something more. What was that something more? I wanted to know how to power down.
Power Down. I propose that the ability to leave the phone on the kitchen table, and go for a walk in the woods, is an invitation into this wonder of awe. The interconnected web of life that can alter one’s anxious or depressed mood for two main reasons. One, it is a chance to be away the variant stimulation of pings, dings, and snapchats, bringing one’s attention down to their digital device away from the wonder of the trees, birds, and sky. Walking in nature is also the chance to commune with the Earth by engaging with its actual energy. Bt how many times do you take your phone with you into the wild with the temptation to respond to a text or snapchat a pose? The key is to leave the digital device, step into the natural world, into the presence of the world.