I had to wonder – what the true purpose was of spending a week camping out in Devon learning to make fire with a bow drill and weave baskets. At a conscious level, I had a list of reasons why I was attending the Schumacher College’s ‘Living on the Earth – remembering the ways of the ancients’ course.
Our ancestors once lived completely within the natural rhythms and senses of mother earth. They knew everything about nature and how to survive and thrive in its movements, just like how today, we know how to – well, actually, what do we know today? We know how to drive to shops to buy stuff that other people have made, consume it, and put the stuff we don’t want into bins that then gets mysteriously taken away. We know how to while away our time filling up our mental databases with information from an onslaught of mass media, all while our own planet, in real time, in reality, gets rapidly devastated.
These days, to be homeless and moneyless is seen as the lowest social status, yet our ancestors did not live in houses or have money to buy products. They were surrounded by food, by medicines, by everything they needed to build shelters, tools, cooking equipment, beds, clothes, weapons. They knew freedom like we can’t begin to imagine today. They knew community, they had tribe, in a way that we have lost and is responsible for a massive portion of national stress and depression. They had health too – from eating pure and wild foods, not the chemicals, sugar and grain that are making us sick today.
Libraries of knowledge for living a free, healthy and pure life are absent from our modern realities, replaced by useless information, dependency and imbalances.
And yet, I believe in moving forward – I do not think we are meant to still be living in the stone age, or going back to it. But our world is in such heart-breaking imbalance, and the only possible way forward is for humans to restore their connection to the natural world – to see what is truly happening, to appreciate that this earth is alive, to recognise how unconditionally she gives us everything we need to thrive, to enter into relationship with her, to love her and be loved in return – to nurture and rebuild a life with nature.
I have been teaching nature connection for six years – on a spiritual level. On my retreats and workshops I guide people into communion with the spirit of Mother Earth and the individual trees and plant and birds, to feel their song and experience the immense healing that comes from being in presence and openness with the natural world. Yet I did not have the other hal