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  • Writer's pictureGeoffrey Higgins

Mindful Walking

People walking a labyrinth practicing mindful walking

Geoffrey Higgins, the founder of Matara, can be found doing one of two things almost everyday. He will either be out in the parklands or formal gardens at Matara working on the newest project - be it the wildflower meadow, building the new polytunnel or reconfiguring a water feature to create a more tranquil flow. Or he will be in the Palm House, nose in a book, highlighter out, learning more about meditation and living with intention. 

What better way to combine his two loves than with mindful walking? It is a great way to take time, relax and reconnect with the natural world. 

Don't know where or how to start? This is Geoffrey's favourite introduction to Mindful Walking:

An excerpt from “Love letter to the earth” by Thich Nhat Hanh

Mindful walking is a wonderful practice to help you revive nourishment and healing, from the earth. When you open the door and go outside into the fresh air, you get in touch with all the elements around you. Each step can put us in touch with body, mind and place. We have to be fully present. Every step placed softly, gently and mindfully on Mother Earth can bring vitality and healing.

Steps have the power to save our lives. They can rescue us from the state of alienation we are living in reconnecting us with ourselves and with the earth. While walking you can say;

With each step I come home to the Earth

With each step, I return to my source

With each step, I take refuse Mother Earth

Each step can express your love for the Earth. 

I love Earth; I am in love with the Earth.

Walking mindfully means walking with full awareness of this love, filled with love and understanding, we become deeply aware of every single thing on this planet. We notice that the leaves on the trees are a startling light green in spring, a vibrant green in summer, a rich yellow, orange and red in autumn and then in Winter, when the branches are bare the tree continues to stand tall so strong and beautiful, harbouring life deep inside. Mother Earth receives the fallen leaves and breaks them down to create new nourishment for the tree so it can continue to grow.

When walking you are giving 100 percent of your awareness and attention to your walking. In this way, you will be present for ground beneath you, for the plants in front of you, the clouds above you, and the people around you. Every mindful step has the power to transform us, including animal, plant and mineral. When we walk mindfully, gathering nourishment from the earth, we have the opportunity to practice inclusiveness. With each step, we can say;

I know the Earth is my mother, a great living being

I vow to protect the Earth and the Earth protects me

Every step taken in mindfulness brings us on a step closer to healing ourselves and our planet

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