Lush Australia landscape with tree and water

I listened to a radio program today (a repeat) about Aussies trying to understand the concept of COUNTRY and an Anglican Priest talked about how she is trying to “listen to the land.”

That got me thinking. She emphasised, “Don’t grasp at it! Just let it talk to you.”

Could this become a common practice for us and for children? Could we walk mindfully on this ancient land and learn deep listening of the land? Are we still capable?

Sarah (the priest) describes staring at a tree for a long time to really KNOW that tree. What might that feel like? Imagine slowing down like that every day. How might that change us? How might that affect children?

If we could walk like this without phones or noise or headphones, might we come to understand just a tiny bit of what COUNTRY really means to Indigenous Australians.

Probably won’t happen- but what a wonderful thing for all Aussies to do today, this week or soon- walk lightly on this great land and listen with our whole being. It might teach us to go forward with more understanding of what it could really mean to be an Australian. It might also help us understand and gain a new respect for the traditional owners of this land.

I have occasionally encouraged children to stare at and carefully copy real plants, looking closely at every detail and as the concentration deepened you could have heard a pin drop. These relatively young kids slowed down, focused and were so easy to teach after this 10 minute exercise. I wonder if mindful walking or even just mindful gazing at a tree might have the same effect?

I’ll find out tomorrow!





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