From the Appalachian Trail to the great Northwest to our little rails-to-trails “B-Line” here in Southern Indiana, everyone’s hiking! The woodsy atmosphere, the clean air, the sacred solitude or cheery comradery are sweet aspects of our tryst with nature. According to our blogger today, there is research to support the idea that green spaces heal, and that perhaps the longing for the outdoors is a desire to get closer to the divine. Karla Hackney, writing for the August 23, 2015 edition of The Oregonian, shares a little “green” inspiration. Grab your backpack and water bottle! Here’s Karla:
I relish the day when my friend calls and says “we need to go for a walk.” Her call is “code” for “let’s go hiking, so we can get spiritually above all this stuff that’s going on right now.” Even though we climb low hills and rarely log more than six miles, our conversation climbs up out of our everyday challenges and we encourage each other to look at things from a higher, more spiritual, perspective.
Currently there are numerous studies expounding the health benefits of spending more time in natural greenspaces. For instance, in her June, 2015 article, “How walking in nature prevents depression,” Olga Khazan of The Atlantic reports on an in-depth study showing how natural environments are restorative and confer psychological benefits….No one from the Pacific Northwest would argue these findings, but is it merely being in nature that improves our well-being? Or could it be that hiking gives us an opportunity to get closer to the divine?….