As I acknowledge my own tenderness and seek it out, removing unnecessary armorings and coverings - I become more able to receive from nature. I let my guard down and take off my shoes. I soften up and get in touch with my tenderness. I feel safe and at ease. I'm coming home again.
Equally important to my own tenderness is that of the landscape I go to. There are places that are more tender than others - places where the power of nature is more available. I have seen a continuum of tenderness in most of the places I have lived. It might go something like this:
- interstate freeway
- side street
- city park
- trail in park
- off the trail in the park
This a progression from least tender to most tender. From hard, paved, and traveled heavily to earthy, natural, quiet and perhaps pristine - depending where you are.
Others have written about this as "auric pollution" which I like.
The idea: that people possess energy fields that surrounds them - perhaps it's the thing we feel when someone is standing close to us when we have closed eyes. We don't see them but we know they're there. People have energy that extends beyond the boundary of their skin - this is the Aura.
When a person walks a path they leave a little of their aura behind— a dusting left in their wake. Places like interstate freeways have high levels of these auric accumulations since so many people travel them. Trackless wilderness would be at the other end of the continuum with hardly any visitors and thus very little auric pollution.
Places that are not routinely visited by people have a different feel to them. They are aurically unpolluted. Pristine.
They are the tender vittles of the Earth.
If I want to connect most exquisitely with nature I need to let down my guard, access my personal tenderness and then go to a place that has low levels of auric pollution.
Tender meets tender.
Once I am there I can walk or sit mindfully and notice what arises in me. I may write in my journal or choose not to, saving it for another time, choosing instead to just
Where are the places of low auric pollution near you? Where are the tender vittles? Map them out. These are your spots to connect and Return To Earth.