If one were to assume that living in the jungle is easy, they would be mistaken. While this may be true for many, there are plenty of ways to make life possible in the bush. When life becomes possible for any individual within the jungle, the benefits will, in turn, appear clear as day. One such benefit that can be shared involves a connection to the land. The jungle radiates a certain type of energy that makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up straight. The beautiful thing about this energy is that it can be harnessed and used to benefit humanity in many ways.
The energy I am speaking of is in the foods we eat, the plants that flourish,the insects that keep the ecosystem balanced, and the water that keeps the river rolling. Making a conscious effort to understand this energy and live in sync with it will put things into perspective quite nicely. As Walt Whitman once stated:
“Now I see the secret of the making of the best persons; it is to grow in the open air and eat and sleep with the Earth”.
Once a person can live with this energy and become a part of it then it can also be used to achieve a state of mind. For many, this state of mind is tranquil and untroubled. When we become distracted we lose sight of this energy and the many cycles that coexist in harmony. The tropics are full of life and so many things are happening that should capture our attention as humans. After spending time in the jungle, it becomes evident that the trees, plants and animals are actually the teachers; in order to live in unison, we must learn from them first. As Greek philosopher Epictetus once said:
“Nature has given man one tongue, but two ears, that we may hear twice as much as we speak”.
We must learn before we act in order to keep our planet safe. The fruits and vegetables that we eat for example are charged with information from the universe. This information may not be visible or tangible but we can learn to be receptive towards it. When this information is obtained, people can then learn to appreciate it, creating awareness, and as a result, serve as a vessel for the transportation of this knowledge.
The mountains, trees, rushing rivers and open valleys encompass the peaceful spirit contained within life. A wise man, calling himself John Muir, once said:
“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.”
The beauty of this energy lies within its attainability and fundamental solutions for a global concern. These cycles that exist in the wilderness may seem complex, but when broken down into smaller units, we then understand their simplicity and we can see how each function for the greater good of life as a whole. For example, when an animal such as a monkey eats a banana, he or she leaves behind the peel for the tree. The monkey does not carry the peel to another location but instead leaves it where he or she found it. The peel then decomposes and becomes a nutritious supplement for the soil and the tree. Learning to understand the essence of these cycles and how they work together is something humanity has forgotten and become ignorant towards. Projects like those at Kalu Yala are important because they help raise awareness and consciousness in hopes to change the way people live by spreading knowledge and ideas involving a more natural lifestyle. Here at Kalu Yala, we feel it is important to share this energy with other children of mother nature and therefore are hoping to inspire others to join us in this search for a better lifestyle.