The Japanese are amazing people, able to distill concepts down to their basics and in so doing create incredible beauty of sight, mind and soul.

Wabi-sabi is one example, creating beauty in imperfection, like repairing a cracked vase with gold instead of heading to Amazon for a replacement as we would be inclined!

Shinrin-yoku is another fabulous Japanese philosophy concept.

Growing up in a temperate rainforest I can relate to the idea of ‘forest bathing’, simply relaxing in a forest to renew your spirit and soul! How many times growing up just the smell of damp moss and Douglas Firs would give me a renewed vigour, making me want to travel deeper and deeper into the forest!

Shinrin-yoku began in Japan in the 1980’s as a way to counter high tech burnout and to inspire people to reconnect to and protect their forests.

The Japanese quickly embraced this form of ecotherapy. In the 1990s, researchers began studying the physiological benefits of forest bathing, providing the science to support what we innately know: time spent in nature is good for us!. While Japan is credited with the term shinrin-yoku, the concept at the heart of the practice is not new. Many cultures have long recognized the importance of the natural world to human health.

Forest bathing is not just for the wilderness-lover; the practice can be as simple as walking in any natural environment and consciously connecting with what’s around you. A simple concept creating a beautiful state of mind!

Domo Arrigato Nippon!

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