Living in a busy city can take its toll.
Hong Kong is no exception.
However, living in this city has a number of perks.
One of them being that it’s possible to get out of the city and into the nature within 25-30 minutes. Mountains, beaches and hiking trails are all very accessible in Hong Kong.
Given the efficient public transport system, it’s easy and affordable to make the most of the day out and about exploring the scenery that is on offer.
I personally strive to make an effort to go out into the mountains for a run or a hike on Sundays. It’s hiking season now in Hong Kong, the humidity has clearly subsided and winter is upon us.
If you’re from colder parts in the world, Hong Kong’s winter will be a most enjoyable change from it’s hot summer counterpart. Thus hiking is even more enjoyable and totally bareable.
I digress, enough about the whether.
Immersing yourself in nature brings clarity
I compare going out into the mountains to meditation and feel that they are related.
When you sit still and mediate persay, what our minds are doing is essentially working and processing the subconscious activity that takes place each day.
Sifitng through and decompressing the incessant number of thoughts that take place and stilling of the mind provides space and clarity of vision.
It’s similar to having a dirty windscreen. It makes it difficult to see out the front of your car. I remember those cold mornings when I had to drive with my head out the window while the windscreen de-misted itself. It seemed to take longer than if I had taken the cloth lying in the car and had given it a wipe prior to driving off.
If this analogy makes sense – please leave a comment. 🙂
Point is… taking 5 minutes a day to “still out” will vastly improve your mental system within, amongst other benefits which can only be experienced through practice. No amount of reading about stilling the mind or samadhi or enlightenment will get you there.
Fall in love with building the discipline to sit for 5 minutes a day. Make a log, experiment and see if you can do it for 3 months. If after that you feel no change or improvement in mindset then you can stop.
“Hiking for me, is a long meditation.”
There’s silence, smells, views, feelings and in some cases animals.
One’s awareness is acutely sensitive to our surroundings as we have to navigate the trails and paths of the mountainous terrain. Adrenaline is a little higher than normal.
Isn’t this similar to life?
As we walk the path of life day-to-day – we breathe.
Cultivating a slightly greater sense of awareness towards our breath can provide a heightened sense of clarity and vision. With a cleaner lens…
You may begin to take in more than what you were used to.
A few other points about nature:
Nature Heals – It reduces anger, fear and stress while increasing the pleasant feelings that contribute to our physical and mental wellbeing.
Nature Soothes – We become absorbed by nature scenes, distracting us from your pain and discomfort.
Nature Restores – It can improve our mood and alleviate the ‘down’ feeling. Because humans find nature inherently interesting, we can naturally focus on what we are experiencing out in nature. This also provides a respite for our overactive minds.
A hike leaves us feeling refreshed, ready for new tasks.
According to a series of field studies conducted by Kuo and Coley at the Human-Environment Research Lab, time spent in nature connects us to each other and the larger world. Nature inspires feelings that connect us to each other and our environment.
Nature Connects Us to the Whole
Do you hike?