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One of America’s favorite pastimes, primitive camping (add electricity and bathrooms for an extra fee), has turned me into a renegade city dweller. For a couple of days, I remained off the grid, but still managed to snap a few pictures to revisit the place I want to go back to as soon as I can.

During my stay at the trail’s end of the Appalachian Mountains, I walked bare feet with my (super conductor) silver toe rings so I could absorb the earth element as much as I can into my body. I wanted never to forget this feeling of how earth feels like, soft and mushy with blades of grass tickling my feet. I had begun to think that tiles and concrete make up the earth.

Whenever I go on a hike, I am bombarded with the same friendly inquisitiveness. I can feel the lake and its vast silence humming with life under the surface. The mountains in the distance look at me as if they’re asking, “Why did it take you this long to find us?” Two dried up tree limbs spring out of the earth on either side of my full view as if its arms are welcoming me. How else can mother earth beckon its children?

 

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I feel my face with my palms and look down at my feet to check if I’m still myself – one whole of a human being. I’m using my senses to soak in the view, but somehow my inner wisdom has awakened to experience this strange stillness. I can’t even sit still with my eyes closed to get this close to my core in any other concrete jungle.

Amidst this natural setting, I feel like I can’t be anything unnatural or unpleasant. I will have to ask every thought of mine to vacate its mind’s house. If I can’t clear out my thoughts, I can never be alone, the giant trees seem to teach me.

The fact that they were here well before I arrived and they will still be standing long after I leave the earth’s lap, hits me hard. My petty thoughts of unfolded laundry, lunch box ideas and presentations that are due humiliate me.

Like Mother nature, I want to be a stoic. I will only bear witness to love, greed, hate and excesses but not be stifled by emotions created and only known to our human kind.

I find it very hard to turn my eyes away from the brilliant orange glow of the crackling fire pit in the chilly nights. I felt that in a strange way, we were each other’s fuel to stoke the fire within us. When I heard the water in the streams run and crickets croak all night, I did not want my eye lids to fall. I wanted to listen that intently.

 

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The five elements, earth, fire, water, air and space, don’t seem to tell each other that in their own power, they stand alone, and are not really dependent on one another. They simply exist with unconditional trust, freedom and generosity in this shared space. They teach me to reserve my judgement, perceptions, and just be accepting and content and to believe that I am blessed to someday disintegrate and become one with them.

I come back to my home in the city with a heightened sense of awareness of the infinite powers of nature’s creativity showing me that artificial intelligence that we have built in our immediate surroundings has its many limitations.

Nature is continuous, eternal and unyielding. It is tranquil, doesn’t judge itself and holds no remorse over what’s lost. In front of nature, we remove our armor, because we can’t do anything but surrender in front of its magnitude. True joy is when you connect with your true nature. Nourish your inner nature and you won’t find yourself influenced by jealousy, anger, ego and greed.

I hope you’re spending time exploring your own true nature.

 

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