Our beloved Earth has three green hearts -- Amazonia, Congo and Sundaland -- the worlds three major equatorial rainforest systems. These are places of unfathomable complexity and diversity, places of beauty and wonder. They are the living embodiment of agaya and ubuntu -- joyous, raucous, mysterious, fierce and lovely.
It can be instructive and healing to include some acknowledgement of the land and the people who lived there as part of our gatherings. We can learn important things about appropriate ways to act with integrity in our local ecosystems from the indigenous peoples of the land. Who are the indigenous people where you live? What do you know about their history, and how they may be engaged in protecting their land and culture now?
In Novasutras, we help one another deal with our emotional responses to the climate and extinction crises through practices like meditation and shinrin-yoku. Developing deeper awareness of ubuntu and agaya enhances our emotional resilience. Dr. Michelle Merrill, founder of the Novasutras Movement, discussed some of these ideas in an interview for an article about climate grief that was published last month.
Reposting Molly Young Brown's powerful reflection on the dominant Industrial Growth Society. The suffering caused by this system stems from its insistence on unrealistic and unhealthy relationships between people and with the more-than-human world: its lack of ubuntu and agaya.
Explore the history, practice and science of "forest bathing", and how it can help you deepen your connection with all other beings in loving-kindness, with the complex wonder and sacred beauty of the universe, with what we call agaya and ubuntu in Novasutras. Shinrin-yoku practice may help you become a more effective agent for increasing ubuntu and agaya in the world.