Earth matters and Bernie Rowen-Ross urges us to slow down and think more deeply about the simple things in life – such as the trees around us.

We have had a beautiful spring in terms of flowering bulbs and we will have all seen the gorgeous yellow fields of flowers of the rape seed. And no doubt some readers will have had hay-fever as a result of the pollen! But, the breath-taking sights are memorable. The trees are in full leaf and life in East Lothian is beautiful. How can we improve it then?

We are all aware of the need for many more trees in our surroundings due to the climate crises, and I feel we can help by honouring the spirit of the wonderful forests that we have already. We live a symbiotic life with trees and in doing so, we are sharing our lives with the birds who not only nest but find food in some trees, the insects that are often pest controllers, and many other small creatures. Without trees we cannot breathe, so take a deep breath, and send a heartfelt thank you to the trees in your area.

Try to sit with your back against a tree for a while, and see if you can sense the life force in a being that is so much bigger than you! There are many indigenous cultures that have trees as an important part of their lives. 

The African Shaman of Burkino Faso and other African countries, have to “feel the spirit of the tree” before they can be initiated as a shaman. 

The Ancient Druids of Celtic lands planted Sacred Groves, many of which still exist today. And in today’s modern Druid Orders, they encourage the planting of a Sacred Grove – a place to perform ritual and worship. These groves can be a privately-owned sanctuary or planted in the community. They form a wonderful leafy network throughout the world, they radiate peace, harmony and are home to many different species. In fact. if you join a Druid Order today you are encouraged to plant a grove for your children, your grandchildren and the future of our planet. 

I recently shared a wonderful evening with fellow gong players in a leafy area and have to say the evening was beautiful, the trees felt like a canopy of loving protection, as we struck our gongs and lulled our audience to a different head space, so that they could experience deep relaxation. I have a feeling that the trees enjoyed it as well. Even a deer danced by as we were gonging away.

So, have a look around, or ask your local supplier for an indigenous tree and find one that will fit in your space and plant it when the time is right. Know you have contributed towards cleaner air, a happier future, and even if it does not grow to its full size in your lifetime, you have left a legacy.

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

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