Earth matters and Bernie Rowen-Ross urges us to slow down and consider how we treat our planet. Mahatma Gandhi was an advocate of the slow movement, although that is not what he called it. Slowing down gives meaning to life and shows more respect for our beautiful planet.

Planet earth is at the forefront of people’s minds and there is many a discussion about earth matters. How humans have injured the planet by destroying her natural resources, choking rivers and seas with plastic and creating holes in the ozone layer. Our carbon emissions are the subject of international conferences, international agreements and disagreements. But each of us will, and is being affected by the way we treat our beautiful, generous, long-suffering planet.

In the Native American Ten Commandments the first commandment is “The earth is our mother, care for her”. The greatest thing about this commandment is, it’s easy, we can do this. According to scientists our wonderful Mother Earth is pretty stable, she has been orbiting the sun for around 4,500 billion years. She is certainly an old mother! It is said that with age comes wisdom and this wisdom can be embraced by us.

We can join the Slow Movement which includes growing our own food and Slow Gardening which involves making compost, having respect for each plant, respecting and treating the garden organically, sharing the bounty, living as much off the land as possible, and respecting the garden as a living subject – treating both plants and people with loving respect and mindful awareness. This attitude leads to a generosity of spirit and a gentleness of nature.

And what about Slow Clothing? There is more we can do, such as; making and mending our clothes, weaving our own sustainably acquired wool, buy second hand and recycle old clothes by turning them into shopping bags and other useful items. For example, an old shirt becomes an apron or a child’s dress. 

Slowing down allows us more time for meaningful relationships. Allowing children to discover the joy of nature, taking them for walks in our beautiful surroundings, teaching them to plant their own plants and to watch them grow can increase their sense of wonder. In fact, one of the most positive emotions is wonder (a sense of awe) and research tells us that this increases the health of our immune system. 

Our planet deserves our best efforts and as we watch the spring bulbs peep their heads out of the ground we know that there is hope for the future. As the daffodils blossom and as we plant new seedlings, we do this with hope in our hearts. This positive attitude is what Mother Earth needs, and will thrive on. As we weave a life of meaning we will get to know a deeper self – one that is both compassionate and creative.

Bernie Rowen-Ross is a Psychotherapist, Sound Healer and Astrologer, she works from THE BAREFOOT SANCTUARY
45 Melbourne Place, North Berwick | t: 01620 844 321