3 hours among trees - and the benefits it brings

View of Stourhead

As many folk call me a tree hugger, I think it's only fitting that I share a little of my love about them and why they're so important to my sense of wellbeing. Whilst we all know generally the vital role trees play in life here on this earthly plane, I want to give more of a personal flavour of how being and connecting with trees enhances my physical and spiritual health and provides a key for deeper truths.

Since being in Somerset it's become a bit of a ritual for us to visit Stourhead on the Somerset/Wiltshire border in the autumn and enjoy the magnificent colours walking around the 2,500 acre site. We usually aim to visit during October but a recent knee ligament injury put paid to that idea! Now I can comfortably walk distances again we decided to grasp the opportunity of a break in the monsoon type autumn downpours and head out! It's always a popular destination and the car parks were already getting quite full by the time we arrived by mid morning. One thing I enjoy about this particular location is the sense of space and although there were a lot of people, you never feel like it's crowded - the estate is vast so it's easy to find quiet spots to sit and enjoy the view. It's actually one of those places which you can visit time and time again and there'll always be something new to see. We dislike guided tours generally, preferring to do our own thing, so we grabbed a map and just chose a meandering path we both liked.

The breathtaking views are one thing, but I find myself always drawn to going to touch and commune with trees as we walk round. Frankly I'm way beyond caring what other visitors may think of it; I have this built in need to say 'hi' to a friend, and certain trees just call to me.

A major benefit for me of being among trees is how I can literally feel the oxygenation improving my physical wellbeing. This is particularly evident when I'm among fir trees which, by the way, happen to be my all time favourite tree (watch out for the next Tree Ogham Fable download in the Library soon!). The symbiotic exchange of breathing in the oxygen trees produce in return for the carbon dioxide we exhale and which they take in is such a powerful reminder of how we are all part of nature and live for each other. It's also an extremely valid reason why CO2 is vital for the planet and humanity's ongoing existence.

Stourhead has the most awesome tree specimens, and I love the unusual short pollarded oak we came across, the walking roots of a spreading yew and the lichen covered beech roots. It's a really great opportunity to connect with so many different species - each one has a different story to tell, held within its energy field. Once you know how to approach and connect with trees, it opens up the opportunity to dive into the knowledge of wisdom each one holds. You can check out more about this on my Day of the Tree workshop

I find autumn a particularly potent time to be with trees spiritually and personally. Autumn colours are my colours... the russets, deep orangey browns, olive greens slowly fading... all just fill me with deep joy and a sense of connection to All That Is. It's quite difficult to put into words at times. The colours and background on my website reflect this and are often commented on. The richness, warmth and sense of 'home' for me is sublime. As my shamanic awareness grows so does my sense that being with and communing with trees is where I feel most connected. It doesn't mean I'm an expert in tree identification, soil preferences, latin names - far from it! I work with trees in a different way. I tap into my celtic heritage, past life experiences and shamanic journeys to find the source of ways in which I can bring their knowledge and wisdom to others, and to myself.

To all the trees we visited yesterday, and to Tree Dryads everywhere, thankyou!

autumn leaf

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