Rosemary Baker - Gardening

Photo Credit: Caitlin Cooney Photography

A View of the Earth from a new Vantage Point

Alright line them up in your mind and consider this.  There are a lot of pretty places out there on the planet.  Places you have been, locations still on your bucket list.  Perhaps you live in a “Garden of Eden” already.  Truthfully there are some not so pretty places on the planet too (largely for our part), but in general, she knows how to give us a great face in those mountain peaks, cloud formations, and gorgeous sunsets we view from various vantage points, doesn’t she?!  The earth with her many places has truly mastered the art of Beauty and she has an abundance of wisdom to offer when we are communing with these places.  Mountains, river valleys, and oceanside views throughout the world draw tourists and people to stay permanently and for a very many good reasons.

We live quite literally on a gold mine of opportunities for creative transformation, hands-on, joy-filled activities for learning, playing, growing, healing, and experiencing a life of miracles.  I mean we get to live here – on this awe-inspiring, diverse, abundant, and gorgeous planet!  How much are we acknowledging this, celebrating in fact, and integrating this knowledge and understanding in our daily lives?”

We see and enjoy the trees outside our windows sure, we take our happily appreciative walks in our running sneaks, we drive out to the local foothills for day hikes, staying on groomed and trimmed trails and for obviously good reasons – so we don’t overburden, erode, and destroy our wild places.  But still, if you examine these habits, notice our bodies remain physically separated from the vegetation around us and the ground beneath us.  We are making the greatest and best use of this massive opportunity on earth, aren’t we?

The En-souled Perspective

I acknowledge and know that I am an eternal Spiritual being having a physical experience.  This is the lens of my foundation now but it hasn’t always been so.  And as such in my short years on this planet I have also been a landscape designer and gardener, a botanist, a restoration ecologist, a wetland scientist, the lists of intellectual “–ists” could continue.  Dialing it down I am a plant nut and I love this earth from the depths of my heart and soul!  I have been integrating my life with Gaian energies probably more than the average human, the city-dwelling kind at least, and it has in fact been my passion to do so and to share it with others as long as I can remember.  In these (now seen as spiritual) experiences I have observed many things including my thoughts and activities, my patterns, progressions and stopping places, my illnesses, awakenings and healings, and those of others around me.  Along the healing journey of my life thus far, for one reason or another, my system has understood the significance of moving beyond the appreciation for nature as an external phenomenon.

I have innately understood that direct and consistent relationship through connection (touch) with this planet is good.  Simply put.  And I have acted upon that understanding enough in my life choices for a myriad of benefits whether conscious or not.  And in that more connected paradigm, I observe also the contrasting dualities around me, and quite a breathtaking experience of the disconnectedness and imbalances existing in our relationships to the planet, to ourselves, and each other.” 

Digging Deeper into the Issue

But let’s remain on the topic of environmental concerns.  I’m not saying we don’t care about preserving virgin forests or don’t feel remorse when another coastline or coral reef is lost to sea level rise and polluted waters.  Many of us feel at least a little sad when our neighbor cuts down a big majestic city tree on their side of the line.  I don’t believe anyone intentionally means harm when they throw recyclables in the trash or cigarettes from their cars on Interstate-5.  I actually know we are Good at our core, at the blueprint of who we are.

Could it be that one of our key issues is that we and our recent ancestors have built the communities we live in, created our lifestyles, and patterned ourselves out of the habits of being in actual and regular contact with the earth?  Contact which might be vital to human function and wellness, maybe even speed up the progression of the soul – leading to greater intuitive awareness, clarity, and wisdom in all our actions?  What a concept.  We believe we are connecting with the planet when we’re outside but we really aren’t getting the full spectrum benefit of this contact, because we don’t yet understand what it is.  For most, it may never occur to think that it’s a problem to spend the majority of our lives in our cars, offices, un-ground houses and high-rise apartments.  These hidden disconnects and hidden knowledge are the issues.  And what we don’t see, don’t observe in our unconscious habits, comes back eventually to bite us in the butt, always!

We donned rubber-soled shoes, we left the fields and forests for the age of civilization, religion, language, science and mathematics, and now the uber-technological age of computers and electronic gadgets and games (which by and large keeps us indoors).  The tech age is actually pretty exciting!  But our focus on these activities has also taken us away from physical contact and an understanding of the bioelectrics of our bodies and the natural world.  Significant numbers of us don’t even have a cognitive understanding that there are bio-energetics involved and how they work.  Separation as simple as that (and yet possibly one of the most critical missteps we are primed for correcting) that is a major root to all imbalances – beginning simply with physical/mental/emotional well-being.

“Those that climb towards a more religious or spiritual perspective (mind, body, spirit) might say our relationship with the planet right now is a manifested reflection of our current state of Separation – from the nature of our own divinity, our true Self, and from God.” 

Earth-based Momentum and the Earthing Movement

So, God aside, there is a building wave of consciousness on the planet about a great many hope-filled things!  Organic foods, holistic health and wellness, permaculture, integrated green energies and home technologies, ecological stewardship and eco-villages, yoga and dance movements, meditation and Reiki are all aspects of this profoundly healing and new paradigm-wave bringing on the potential of actualizing a massive shift.  The more active terms “Earthing” and “Grounding” are also coming now to the forefront of consciousness.  What is so hopeful about the Earthing movement is there is mounting data from scientific research on the healing benefits of bioelectric contact with the earth.

Clinton Ober, Stephen T. Sinatra, and Martin Zucker published a powerful (and forgive the term), ground-breaking, and award-winning book on this topic in 2011 called “Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever?”  The authors of this publication describe the ways in which the energies in our bodies are meant to function in relation to the energetics of the earth.

Hands in the Plants

Photo Credit: Caitlin Cooney Photography

An earth that,teems with subtly pulsating frequencies…the planet is a six-sextillion metric ton battery that is continually being replenished by solar radiation, lightning, and heat from the molten core.  Just like a battery in a car that keeps the motor running and the wheels turning, so does the rhythmic pulsations of natural energy flowing through and emanating from the surface of the Earth – keeping the biological machinery of global life running in rhythm and balance.”    – Clinton Ober, Stephen T. Sinatra, and Martin Zucker

Ober, Sinatra, and Zucker describe in detail the insidious phenomenon of our physical separation from this natural energy, the loss of access to contact in the urban environment, and our loss of awareness to go access it.  They discuss the myriad benefits of the negative ions emitted from the planet’s surface, the epidemics of stress, inflammation, and disease in the human population and their intriguing links to lack of contact with these energies.  They offer case studies compiled by physicians and researchers,  building independent data that demonstrates the importance of re-connecting to plants, soils, and nature as a basic tenet to holistic wellness.

“Just as breathing, hydrating, eating, exercising, and sleeping are vital needs for human health, Earthing in fact supports and in most cases, enhances all of these very basic human activities and is proving to support the body in healing and recovery from illness.” 

Not yet common knowledge (but undoubtedly needs to be), Earthing each day or while in recovery from an illness, is the therapeutic act of having physical bioelectric contact (through bare feet and hands) with the surface of the earth.  We can also connect with these energies from contact with the living parts of plants (green leaves and needles, green stems, etc.) that are currently rooted in the soil.  Alternative Earthing technologies exist too.  The kind that plugs into grounded outlets for those who don’t have regular access to gardens, lawns and parks, or for those who don’t find it practical to be outside all year and in all types of weather.

Grounding the Topic and Coming Full Circle

To the authors of Earthing, getting back in contact is necessary to our human abilities to live long and healthy lives.  As a Modern Mystery School initiate and Kabbalist, I say it’s imperative to our abilities to live life fully Awake and Alive!  Being in regular physical contact with this planet helps us to embody the aspects of the Self that are more than just human!

“From my vantage point Earthing is far more than physical therapy.  It weaves into a lifestyle of getting present, connecting with the sensations of the body and the perceptions of the mind, reconnecting with the habits of our ancestors, and re-integrating all sorts of hidden knowledge.  Earthing is about witnessing and having first-hand knowledge of the rhythms and patterns of the earth and universe that so divinely reflect for us the intangible realities and deeper truths of our origins.  For me, Earthing is about beginning to re-wire and re-connect the lost pieces of the soulIt is a birthright of living we have largely forgotten, but a piece of our crown we can very easily reclaim.

As a gardener, I’m like “what’s so new or insightful about touching plants and soils?”, but it is because so few of us are doing it consistently!  And since undergoing life changes resulting from an injury, focusing far more these days on the intangibles of inner garden work, developing other aspects of my life purpose, and shifting away from getting my fingers and nails dirty all day, I too forget to get outside and get my “Vitamin E” as the authors of Earthing have coined.  In the life-changing session work I do for others, my devotion to service as an initiate of an ancient lineage, and the personal clarifying and empowering work I continue each day with the knowledge and keys of Universal Kabbalah and the Tree of Life, it is imperative that I am grounded and that I earth (as a verb) not just exist in a place on the earth (as a noun).  When I am really grounded I heal faster, I’m more in tune, and I have access to far more of the reality around me.  And we are all of us meant to be living life fully alive, in joy, in full health and mastery of our bodies, experiencing far more than a mundane reality, and continuously learning, letting go, transforming and opening to more in response.  I mean doesn’t that sound right to you when you search your heart?

New Leaves and Where to Start

Having identified a significant wide-scale issue with this “hidden disconnect” from the planet – the easy thing is to go outside, buy a bed sheet, and “just do it”, right?  I pose that not all human minds and bodies are alike and by and large we are beautiful, amazing creatures of sometimes not so aware habits and the unconscious patterning not to change.  Put another way, we may not “feel” an Earthing sheet right away, conclude this stuff is bogus, and give up another opportunity to shift gears.  Another dose of hidden truth is that in our patterns of disconnect and high-stimulant culture so many of us actually have an underdeveloped perception of our senses, particularly the subtle ones.  We may even have unconsciously shut them off at some point in order to protect ourselves and stay safe.  We aren’t sure what we feel, our minds aren’t discerning, and there’s a fair amount of stuff clogging the filter.

“Humanity is numb and we’ve been asleep at the switchboard!  It’s kind of an ugly pill and a sobering dose of reality not everyone is going to swallow BUT the good and hope-filled news is each one of us came into this lifetime with the divine capability to consciously create new patterns, to choose to change when we have new knowledge or new experiences.  That is true for us all.”

And we are in the period of the planet right now of mass elevating consciousness.  So many more of us are ready to realize, to heal, to let go, to move forward.  So, from my own healing experiments and experiences in plantophilia, in professional horticulture design and building gardens for Seattle-area clients, in observing behavior, and having a very alive and mostly good-humored relationship to my own resistance to change, I offer to you what actually gets me excited, what’s fun and gets me riled up to be living and trying new things, what gets me more outdoors than in and actually touching the ground.

Foot in the garden

Photo Credit: Caitlin Cooney Photography

Here are my 10 Hot Tips for really grounding “Earthing” into your life:

1. Illuminate Thyself!

Get the facts and understand what Earthing is all about.  Read articles on the topic as well as the book on Earthing discussed here (available for free in .pdf format or for purchase on Amazon).

2. Gather baseline data on your habits.

How much are you are actually “Earthing” or not?  It can just be a practice of passive observations and general awareness or you can track time and behaviors with a journal.  Don’t alter your normal habits and try it for a week – it’s actually fun to study yourself and build personal awareness!

3. Make use of open spaces.

At home in fair weather, if you have access to a yard or garden space with lawn or open soils utilize them. Have a designated sitting or laying spot.  Add a dose of this to your morning or evening routine.  For example, when you get home after work, take your shoes off and go immediately outside to walk around, visit your flowers, your vegetable garden, the trees, or just sit down for a while, breathe deeply, meditate and let go of the daily stress while also EARTHING!  Start with 10 minutes, then work up to 15, 30, perhaps even an hour of that needed quiet time or meditation practice you have also been desiring to start.

4. Create places for de-stressing and healing.

I have created for myself and for clients intentional laying or sitting gardens with soft and aromatic ground-covers and herbs. Places that actually invite the mind and body aesthetically and sensually to go and seek the ground.  These places are great for de-stressing or soothing the nervous system after healing work.

5. Stay connected to the ground.

As much as possible when you’re outside, have bare feet and hands. This is where the garden gloves must come off!  When you’re out hiking or walking down the street touch leaves and live green parts of plants as you pass.  Bare feet aren’t always comfortable, culturally acceptable, or safe.  Did you know moccasins or leather-soled shoes still allow bioelectric current to flow between the earth and your feet?  And are way fashionable too!

6. Gather and eat from the abundance in nature.

Go U-picking, start your own vegetable garden, go wild foraging (with a knowledgeable and ethical guide).

7. Be consistent.

According to researchers, doctors, various self-mastery experts and a Huffington Post article from 2014, it takes at least 21 days for the mind to form a new habit. Try Earthing each day for a full 30 days.  Pay attention to your physical sensations each day while you are doing it.  Journal about your experiences.  And observe how you feel over time or at the end.  Consistency is important.  You can absolutely do it!

8. Invest in Earthing tech.

As the last and final tier towards greater connection, invest in Earthing technologies. They can be pricey.  It’s a tool in the toolshed for you to receive the passive physical healing benefit at the very least.  Don’t be surprised if it seems subtle.  Sometimes significant shifts occur subtly and over time.

9. Make it fun!

In attempting to create new healthier patterns for yourself, whatever you do – laugh, be humble, you and I are hilariously ridiculous, no judgement, always bring kindness and compassion along in your back pocket.

10. Enjoy the elements – earth, water, air, and sun.


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