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6/08/2008

The Beauty of Nature: Healing Illness

Photo used with permission.



I thought this photo was beautiful enough to justify a post!!! Sometimes in our busy daily lives, we don't stop to fully appreciate the wonder and beauty of nature. For just about everyone nowadays, our daily lives are simply too rushed and complicated.

The beauty of the plants and flowers of nature isn't just the aesthetic appeal that is so clearly demonstrated by the remarkable tulip photo above.

As many of us know, nature is also beautiful in a very practical sense. We have many natural remedies on our list of choices for treating many illnesses... including endometriosis. Many natural supplements are made from a wide variety of plants.

How else can a beautiful flower help act as a healing agent besides by being pretty to look at? Think about how common it is to send flowers to someone who is sick or in the hospital. Yes, they are pretty. The thing is that maybe, just maybe, flowers are helping us more than we think. They can lift our spirits... for example.

When given to others, flowers can let someone know we're thinking of them at a difficult time. Flowers are customarily given at happy times too. In fact, they are used in celebration of many of the milestones of our lives. If you think about it, flowers are important throughout our lifetimes.

I realize this picture is of a tulip and not a rose. (This photo was simply too pretty for me to pass up and tulips are my favorite flowers besides). Plus, bees like tulips, right? :)

Anyway, the expression to "take time to stop and smell the roses" makes lots of sense... though most of us struggle to do so as often as we'd like. Obviously, "stopping to smell the roses (or tulips, as the case may be)!" is a great metaphor for slowing down, taking time for self-care, and simply relaxing. For some of us listening to calming music (perhaps even music with nature sounds incorporated) is very helpful, for some of us mindfulness meditation does wonders to quiet the mind, and for others a simple picnic outdoors on a sunny day can calm the body and mind down.

I have no doubt (layperson that I am) that appreciating nature on a regular basis and (frankly) experiencing something other than a car, work cubicle/office, or "on call" duty is truly HEALING! Maybe our immune systems get a boost from allowing those stress hormones to settle down. Maybe our breathing is less shallow and we are getting more oxygen with each breath. I'm sure the list goes on. The key is that nature is a healing force.

Many years ago... long before the white man crossed over to America, the Native Americans knew a great deal about the value of plants for medicinal purposes. (There obviously were no pharmaceuticals back then)! Unfortunately, the Native Americans' lives were never the same after the white man settled what is now the United States.

Fortunately, some Native American traditions have been passed along successfully generation after generation. I once had the privilege of attending a Native American Dance and Music Festival. I was amazed at the rich history of the Native Americans for using plants medicinally. These lessons weren't taught in my history books. However, we could all stand to learn from the Native Americans and their respect for nature.

Have a wonderful week and don't forget to appreciate the nature all around you.

This article was posted by Jeanne via "Jeanne's Endo Blog" at www.endendoat.blogspot.com.

By the way, this elegant tulip photo is used with permission from "mimbrava" and was found on the Flickr website. If you click on the title of this post or the photo itself, it will route you to the Flickr website. Thank you "mimbrava" for a gorgeous, uplifting photo of my favorite flower.

4 comments:

Yaya said...

I love the picture of the flower! And I DO stop and smell the flowers when I take walks! :) It's amazing how working with little kids can awaken you to small details that most adults usually pass up.

Jeanne said...

Isn't that photo breathtaking? Good for you! Forgetting to stop and smell the flowers can lead to unpleasant consequences.

I agree that children can certainly get the adults around them to see things differently. Their perspective is often more attentive to details, like you mentioned.

When I was a kid, I spent lots of time running and playing outside with the neighbor kids and my two sisters.

Nowadays, kids are often so hooked on TV that they miss out on simple fresh air.

I definitely agree with you, though, that when kids ARE exposed to nature they just soak it in and really get excited about it!

In our society, it seems most adults have lost touch with their "inner child" who often times used to spent plenty of time experiencing the wonders of nature. Things are so commercialized now that today's children don't always get enough "nature time". All I know is that tulip spoke to me. :)

Katie Cat said...

I REALLY like the flower. It is BEAUTIFUL.

Love,
Katie Cat

Jeanne said...

Katie Cat,

I know how much you love flowers... especially tulips! :)

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