Arguably the most fundamental form of self improvement comes at the deepest level, our spiritual development that stems from our very core or heart center.
That's because when we strip away all the trappings of materialism and our physical world, what's left is our essence, or soul.
If we are out of alignment with nature for whatever reasons, we become out of alignment with our own spirit and that, it is believed, can be the foundation of many of the physical as well as mental issues many of us face today.
Connecting with Nature
I see one of my own important daily tasks as getting re-connected with nature, which is something I and anyone can do in a physical way.
The technique is known as grounding. It is nothing more complicated than taking off my shoes and socks and getting my bare feet into contact with the earth beneath them!
I know many people think I'm probably as mad as a hatter for even suggesting such a thing. But in all honesty, it makes me feel good so why shouldn't I do it?
Maybe I'm luckier than most in that I live close to the sea, so it only takes a short walk to get to the beach. Once I'm there, it's off with the foot coverings and onto the sand and down to the sea. I should point out that I'm wearing shorts too.
I can tell you there is nothing quite as relaxing and exhilarating at the same time as getting your feet wet by the cold sea on a hot morning. Then walking along with the sea rushing back and forth letting the energy of the four elements flow through me.
If you're wondering about that, the beach is a great place to work with all four elements:
- Air: its all around
- Water: the sea
- Earth: the sand
- Fire: the sun
The grounding effect comes from the earth replenishing my energy as I walk along barefoot skin to sand. The sea gladly accepts any negative energy and soaks it away. The air and fire (sun) provide positive energy and that's just the spiritual side of the process.
There's a physical side to it too.
Physical Health Boost
If there's one thing most doctors will agree on is that salty air is good for the respiratory system. The sea air is salty and invigorating, so I make sure to be breathing deeply as I walk along.
Another thing that doctors advise is to exercise and one of the best forms of light exercise is walking. When that walking is done on soft, wet sand, dodging waves, sharp shells and large pebbles, the leg and torso muscles have to work a lot harder than when you walk along a nice, flat sidewalk.
So that's two birds taken care of with one physical stone.
A third is the reduction in stress. We all know now that stress is one of the biggest killers as well as causing premature aging, so anything that can alleviate stress has to be a good thing.
Did I mention how relaxing and calming it is walking barefoot along the shoreline?
So that's another positive taken care of.
Oh, and I mustn't forget how good for you getting plenty of vitamin D is. Well, the sun provides our bodies with the raw materials for them to make their own vitamin D naturally.
I'm sure I can hear some gasps from those terrified of the propaganda spread by the media about how dangerous ultraviolet light is and how we'll all get skin cancer if we don't cover ourselves with sunscreen. Well, I for one am not buying it.
As long as I don't spend more than an hour in the morning walking along the beach in shorts, considering I've already built up some natural UV defence thanks to the melanin in my skin (God sure knew what he was doing when he made us), I'm not going to get burnt or get skin cancer!
Now, I've been doing this for over 20 years and no problems so far. That's enough proof for me.
Getting back to the non-physical reasons for my daily beach walk, there is definitely a spiritual lift to this.
Since I'm in a very relaxed state, in a calm environment and giving my body something to do that's good for it, my mind gets some valuable down-time as well. It's not quite meditation, because I need to keep some of my attention on where I'm going, but it's close to it.
Instead of doing what I know a lot of people do when they're on their own, such as letting their mind run an imaginary conversation about something that is related to a problem that needs to be worked out, I deliberately quiet my mind.
The only things that are allowed to run through my thoughts during this time are things like, ″That's a bigger than usual wave coming in and I'd better move further up the beach if I don't want to get drenched,″ or ″Hey, the sun shimmering off those waves out there is awesome!″
Nothing else matters really.
Mental quiet time is definitely good for the body, because it promotes more calmness and less stress. That equates to less inflammation and a stronger immune system.
It is also good for the soul, because it brings a really deep level of calmness that opens the way for new ideas to be created.
I don't want this main article to be too long, because I'm adding separate articles to this section of the website to cover in more detail some of the things that are related to spirituality and our spiritual growth and personal development.
There is room for every one of us to grow in this area. The trick is finding what works for each of us.
I have found an excellent vehicle for my own spiritual as well as physical wellbeing. What's yours?
Date Posted: July 10, 2023
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