This I Believe

Annette - Camden, ME 04843, Maine
Entered on December 26, 2006
Age Group: 30 - 50

The strength that comes from the world out-of-doors

Since I was a child I have felt at home in the world out-of-doors.

And I believe it will alway provide me with some special wisdom.

Where ever I am, out-of-doors-on soft fallen snow, in brilliant green moss, inside dark quiet woods, on glistening wet rocks, at the edge of the sea, I feel the earth echo through my feet and all my senses. I have felt I am returning home-safe, comforted, challenged. I know in my heart, I am a part of something beyond myself and it is awesome!

When I am out-of-doors, I often stop and notice that it is constant and yet constantly changing, always returning, resilient, beautiful and forgiving- all to a point.

I believe if we ask and desire it, the out-of-doors is there to nourish us and rekindle our connections within ourselves and with each other. I can think of many times in my life where I could not think of what to do next, did not know the answer to whatever question was on my mind so I stepped outside, usually to a wooded path in our backyard that ran down to and along a quiet fast running river. I marveled at its constancy and beauty in spite of my own dilemma and confusion. So I know from experience that whether I am troubled or overworked at my job, confused or hurt in a relationship, mad or numb about the state of the world, I can find a place out-of-doors where I will be replenished with energy, clarity and space.

While this may not be the same for everyone, I believe in whatever way we can observe or participate in the mysteries of the world out-of-doors we will, I believe, find nourishment and wisdom.

It only needs to take a moment-an intentional moment- an open window through which fresh air can enter in, a quiet walk on a side street or it can take many moments soaking ourselves in outdoor adventures – but this moment I believe will provide what is needed for our humanity, to keep us whole, to keep us connected, to keep us alive.

And beyond the moment, I believe if we as humans treat the earth with true respect,

engaging with its resources to find balance, protecting places that feel sacred or that define our childhood memories, watching and mirroring its natural and recurring patterns-we will always be able to rely on this relationship with the out-of-doors; this special gift where we can gain insight about ourselves and the world around us.

And this I believed as a child and I believe for all time to come.