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Connecting People To Nature

Posted by NYCA Blogger on May 19, 2017


Shasank Pokharel,

14/71 Dantakali Path, Vijayapur, Dharan, Nepal.

It was storming outside when I was writing this blog. Dharan, as a matter of fact has second highest rainfall just behind Pokhara. The place in Dharan where I was born, bought up and still living, Vijayapur has plenty of greenery. The green lushes of different species, hills and cool breeze have always inspired me to be creative and taking a nap in the lap of nature always refreshes me. Not to mention, the ‘out of box’ thought I come across all the time is a result of a strong connection to nature, err! That’s at least what I think.

What is ‘connection to nature’?

It is that eternal feeling you get when your sense organs actually pick up all the natural activities going around you. Twittering of bird, freshness of air or maybe beautiful scenery! It is also a feeling of care and love towards nature that is spontaneously awakens your heart and mind and perceives you to give nature the same amount of respect that you show to your parents. That feeling is also a core reason for someone being an environment campaigner/activist or a conservationist. Moreover, that certain connection to nature has given birth some of the greatest literary figure and creative minds whether the initiator of Romantic Age in English literature, William Wordsworth or four-time Pulitzer Prize for Poetry winner Robert Frost.

Why to connect people to nature?

Connection to nature is more like a basic necessity. Not to mention, we are dependent on nature for our survival. In real, it is more about expressing our gratitude to nature which we rarely do. Nature is not only helpful for our basic survival but it also helps us to refresh and divert our mind for a while from our monotonous routine. It helps to enhance our thoughts by stimulating certain hormones which calms us down and relaxes us. Moreover various studies suggest that those who spend certain time daily ‘connecting’ to nature are less likely to have health problems and are more creative too. In fact, I myself have experienced a significant upward surge in my creative power and my ability to write quality poems when I am in the lap of nature admiring all the beauty around.

A special relationship with nature is also very important for its conservation. We are at a very critical time in our history where the threat to nature is substantial mainly due to the unprecedented level of urbanization and industrialization in recent years. The best solution to this problem would be motivating entire population to develop a special bond to environment and nature. This bond encompasses care, love and gratitude towards nature and follows the theme of ‘connecting people to nature’. By creating such bond we are not only taking people really close to nature but also trying to treat it with high regards and helping in its conservation.

How to connect people to nature?

It’s easy! You don’t need to send nature a friend request or follow her. What you need is a habit of enjoying even some small gestures from nature say cool breeze in hot, humid summer, rain, flying of birds, etc. Maybe you could take a walk down the park, go for sightseeing or fish in the nearby stream. Else you can also be involved in some noble causes like clean-up campaigns or proper disposal of wastes. There are almost infinite ways to connect to nature and it solely depends on individual to find the best way to feel really close to nature.

As I said there are numerous ways to connect. But what are some of the best examples? National Parks, Wildlife Reserves and Conservation Areas are the perfect examples which have successfully managed to blend natural wilderness with plenty of tourism-elements to take visitors close to nature. Beautiful sceneries and flora and fauna in their natural untouched state have given visitors an altogether different experience. Likewise, in metro cities, in-city parks (e.g. Central Park, NY) and zoo are also helpful in connecting people to nature and relax them from their supercharged life. Similarly, boating in a river or lake, swimming in any natural bodies of water, hiking, trekking, bird-seeing camps, gardening, camping, etc. could also be useful for that purpose.

Adventure sports as a mean to connect people to nature

As we all know the topography of Nepal is very rugged with high hills, deep gorges, glaciers and fast-flowing rivers. The topography although a curse for development, is actually a boon for adventure sports like rafting, paragliding, bungee, mountaineering, etc. The natural resources suitable for these adventure sports can be exploited to draw more and more people towards nature. This will not only increase tourism but will be economically beneficial to our country and local communities. Attracting people to adventure sports is like connecting them to nature by adding the elements of adventure, thrill and excitement to make the connection an unforgettable experience.

 References

  1. ‘Connecting People to nature’, http://worldenvironmentday.global/en/about/connecting-people-nature
  2. ‘The Human-Nature Relationship And Its Impact On Health: A Critical Review’, Valentine Seymour, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5114301/
  3. ‘How does Nature Impact Our Wellbeing?’ University Of Minnesota, https://www.takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/enhance-your-wellbeing/environment/nature-and-us/how-does-nature-impact-our-wellbeing
  4. ‘Top 10 Examples Of Connecting People With Nature’ https://www.slideshare.net/ColleenWearn/top-10-examples-of-connecting-people-with-nature

 

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