Communication Creates Community:

How Aware of Your Surroundings Are You? A Lesson from the Maleku.

On my most recent trip to Costa Rica, I had the unique opportunity to visit the Maleku tribe, and indigenous tribe of Costa Rica dating back prior to the Spanish colonization of Central America.

Since the colonization, their numbers have dwindled to a mere 600 inhabitants, reduced from tens of thousands of their original population, and yet they persevere and struggle to keep their original language and culture alive and relevant.

The Maleku people are incredibly connected to the earth and the vibrations of the jungle in which they live. This is what I had the opportunity to experience firsthand during a jungle tour by one of their medicine men. Akima showed us how the Maleku use their knowledge of the plant life surrounding them to provide them with all of the necessary ingredients to live healthy, life-sustaining lives including food, clothing, medicine, and shelter.

As you watch this video, I encourage you to think about your surroundings and how you relate to it. Most likely, you live in a cosmopolitan cityscape where you are disconnected from where your food comes from. Your medicine comes in bottles, and your homes were erected by someone you do not know.

These realities make it all the more important to reflect on what grounds you to the planet, to the people you meet every day. Do you take time to recognize the nature that surrounds you? When was the last time you looked up at the stars in the sky or the birds that nest in the trees? Taking time to do so reminds us that there is a world outside of the bustling activity that we occupy ourselves with. It has been here long before we arrived, and it will be here long after we depart. This understanding may put the stress of your day into perspective.

I encourage you to plant a garden, and tend to it. If a garden is too big of a step, buy a single plant and keep it in your home. Take your dog for a long walk that you may have postponed. Invite a friend for a walk in the park. In all of these instances, take a deep breath, and remember that we are made of the earth, and it always offers us respite, peace, and calm if we only give it the chance.

Expect miracles,

Lisa

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