Forest Bathing, a return to human connection with nature

I am Gina, and I promote the development of Forest Bathing in wild protected areas, national parks and outdoor places as pristine as possible.  My profession of about 35 years in the National Park System of my country (CONAF) led me to forge a very deep union with the conservation and protection of biodiversity.

Chile is a country that moves by the variety of natural environments throughout this narrow geography, which borders the Pacific Ocean for thousands of kilometers and wanders between the sea and the Andes mountain range. This creates diverse ecosystems, from the Altiplano in the north, to Patagonia and the eternal ice in the south.

My work led me to experience moments of fulfillment and tranquility and motivated me to train myself to guide others in this connection. I believe that the Forest Bathing is an opportunity and a contribution to today’s world because it brings the human being back home. It is a new way of recognizing ourselves as part of the matrix of life.

The human being has forgotten that he is one more in the whole biodiversity and also forgot the power of nature. We are remembering with Forest Bathing what our DNA already knows.

Perhaps modern civilization has led to the disconnection with our essence and we are at a turning point, deciding who we want to be. That is why the crisis we have goes beyond health: it is the way of life we lead. 

One of the purposes of Baños de Bosques Chile is to make this practice inclusive for people with greater social vulnerability and thus provide the possibility of improving their well-being and quality of life.

Following the management carried out by Claudio Vásquez, Coordinator for South America of Forest Therapy Institute to the System of Protected Wild Areas of Chile, we carried out an online Forest Bathing workshop for 25 people in charge of CONAF Welfare Service. In this workshop we spoke about the theoretical foundations of the practice, its health benefits, and then had a virtual walk in a forest. The attendees concluded that this activity allowed them to open their gaze to the culture of balance between man and nature, and supported their physical, spiritual and social health to become better professionals.

If the forest spoke, what would it tell us? It would once again show us our union as a species within biodiversity, show us respect for the Earth. Perhaps he would tell us: “The beings that are part of the sea, the land, the forests and all the energies of nature, we want to tell you to please take care of and value the house that shelters you. Only gratitude to the energy that contains them will lead you to return home ”.

To advance in our evolutionary process, we need human beings to understand that only union will lead us to see their best version. The conservation of all species on the planet will allow us to return to balance. The human being is one more of this megadiverse world that we inherited.

 

Gina Michea Anfossi is the founder of Baños de Bosque Chile. Certified Forest Bathing Guide by Forest Therapy Institute. Life Coach. Forestry Engineer. @conciencia_naturaleza. Holabosqueschile.

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