Many years ago, I met the chief priest of the national forest of Togo. He came to a conference at Oxford College in Great Britain.
It was cold at that time in England. The priest wore no shoes. I asked him why he wore no shoes. He said, “to feel the earth.”
Recently I read an essay on spiritual ecology, and it talked about connecting to nature through the senses and feelings of the body.
It brought back atavistic sensations of when I was an adolescent camping with friends as a young teenager. In those days, we didn’t have the foam pads and air-mattresses of today. We had an old plastic table cloth as a ground cloth, and that was all we had between the earth and our sleeping bags. What power we experienced because of the cloth’s thinness. Body to body. Earth to near skin. We are 98.6 degrees. The earth at six feet depth is said to be 55 degrees.
The first thing you feel is cold as you twist and turn trying to find a comfortable synapse between the energy of your body and the vibrating power of mother earth. Then, slowly, there is a warmth of embracing energy from deep within the earth that envelops you in an embrace of oneness. You and the earth become ONE and no longer is the cold perceptible.
I am a believer that each of us and the earth is connected in ways our society and educational systems are unable to understand or haven’t remembered that we used to know our connections. We are nature and nature is us. As I have said time and time again. We are the nature we abuse. If you’ve never slept on or close to the ground, do so. It will change you.