We live in a culture that isn’t very hospitable to spiritual growth. Nurturing, feeding, and healing of the soul have become extremely challenging in an age that increasingly leans toward materialism and commercialism. Out of the many ways to keep your soul nourished, green living is the easiest and the most effective one.
The decision to go green in life doesn’t only help the environment, but it can also improve your spiritual health. You can feel much better in terms of your physical and spiritual health when you make a few green changes for a more sustainable life.
Little has been written and researched about how green living is related to spiritual health; however, it is believed that body, nature, and spirit are connected. Before we establish a connection between green living and spiritual health, it is important that we explain what we mean by these terms.
Green living, also called sustainable living, is a way of life that attempts to reduce an individual’s use of Earth’s natural resources. It’s also an effort to reduce our carbon footprint by altering our choices and ways of transportation, energy consumption, and diet. Green living is a lifestyle that is naturally balanced, consistent with sustainability and respective of our symbolic relationship with the Earth’s ecosystem.
Spiritual health is a matter involving personal values and beliefs that provide a purpose to life. For years, the path to spiritual health has involved meditation, prayer, or spiritual practice. But lately many people are moving towards greener living where they feel more connected to nature and the planet. This helps them integrate and interconnect with all the things in life. It also ensures that you don’t get lost in the fragmented and materialistic way of living.
Spiritual health is not transcendence or escapism from life; rather, it is the state of being engaged and present in the world where you honor your connection with all the things, thoughts, feelings, and actions.
Are the two connected?
A stress survey conducted in 2017 by the American Psychological Association
found that 75 percent of American adults felt at least one symptom of stress in the past month. It further showed that one in five adults in the United States had experienced a mental health issue. With so many people now suffering from mental health issues including stress, a shift to green living is a must for your emotional, physical, and spiritual health.
Though we don’t often realize it, green living is inextricably linked to spiritual health. To highlight this connection, we have compiled some of the ways in which green living can help your spiritual health.
Finding meaning and purpose in life:
Nature imbues our life with meaning, purpose, and value. Green living is a lifestyle that focuses on nature, environment, the natural ecosystem and its preservation. As we encounter something meaningful in life, we feel ourselves a part of this purposeful and valuable interconnected web of life on the planet.
It helps us recognize that our lives are not limited to private actions, behavior, and experiences. This is because we are intrinsically bound to the web of life on Earth. This intrinsic link is present due to spirituality, which can only be complimented when we move to a way of living that we call green.
Green living is a continuous opportunity to practice spiritual mindfulness. Composting
, recycling, repairing, reusing, eco-wise shopping, conserving water & energy and other eco-friendly acts are all deeds of spiritual mindfulness. It gives us a sense of stewardship and responsibility that can heal the spiritual emptiness of our mundane lives.
Such a degree of mindfulness in our ordinary lives determines the sacredness of our lives. Green living also helps us simplify our lives and prioritize what matters to us, to our families, the community and the overall planet. This feeling of responsibility for ourselves and the planet has enlightened us to move towards more Earth-friendly acts. Scoop Company
is an example that is leading the way in providing sustainable energy solutions in an attempt to reduce our footprint on Earth.
Connection with the whole:
As the eminent scholar James Hillman
Psychology, so dedicated to awakening human consciousness, needs to wake itself up to one of the most ancient human truths: We cannot be studied or cured apart from the planet.
Hellman’s statement is the crux of the ongoing ecological and moral crisis. It reminds us of our connection with the whole of which we are a part and our alienation from the planet. This has resulted in the greatest sufferings ever inflicted on humans. Just as we heal the connection among individuals, families, and society, we also need to improve our connection with the natural world. Because as we destroy a part of Earth, we are also destroying a part of our humanity and green living is the only solution.
Some of our deepest personal healings occur when we connect with the natural world. What inspires this connection and healing is something more personal to us. This links our souls to the soul of the Earth. The moment of connection and healing is different for each person – some find it at the pink radiance of the dawn, some in the tiny blossoms, while others experience it in a tender moment with a creature.
These are moments that have the healing power but the desire to be healed by nature while we continuously harm it, cannot lead to genuine healing.
Adoption of consumerist values and abandonment of spiritual practices has led to catastrophic climate changes, loss of biodiversity, and water & air pollution on a global scale. Understanding that the health of our souls is related to the health of the planet is at the heart of green living and spiritual practice. This feeling of linkage can alleviate some of the most pressing issues and mental health problems of our time.