Indiana & Yoga Magazine Summer 2016 Issue 1 - Page 66

SELF STUDY Greenspace of the Mind By Janmarie Connor Community gardens and parks, biodiversity projects, and ‘green’ designs are on the rise across Indiana. Visit downtown Indy for yourself to see what reimagining urban living looks like. This is due to our expanded understanding of the correlation between Greenspace and our physical, mental, and economic wellbeing. Studies across multiple disciplines reveal feelings of contentment, interconnectedness, and wellbeing increase in correlation to exposure to natural, green space. But it shouldn’t take reams of scientific data to support what we already know. Greenspace makes us feel good. But why? The Essence of Greenspace In an age of amped-up, 24/7 stimulation, whole industries have materialized overnight to capture and bottle the essence of Greenspace. Mind-weary seekers will spend billions this year in order to reconnect with a simpler way of being. Ahhh, a more spacious way of being—sounds nice, doesn’t it? So, you ask, “What’s in Nature’s Greenspace elixir that generates such good vibes? How can I bring Greenspace living into my life?” You don’t need a rooftop garden or an acre of forest to create your own meditative biosphere. It can be in your living space or wherever you are. I’ve meditated blissfully on intercontinental flights, last row, coach class, with toilets nearby. With just a little knowledge and some practice, you can become your own Greenspace. Two-Fold Response to Nature Nature evokes two interrelated and beneficial types of response. The first is a more obvious physiological response. Greenspace serves as Nature’s lungs by improving air quality, regulating the planet’s temperatures, and protecting our waterways. Our bodies respond nicely to nature’s purity, like fresh air and clean water. The second, and subtler response to Greenspace involves another sort of purity. One which moves us from thinking to feeling, from head to heart, and from lower vibratory levels into higher realms of vibration and consciousness. Picture this. You’ve been glued to your computer all day, running from task to task to meet a project deadline. Your mind is cluttered and you’re searching for an escape. Next scene. You walk into a luscious park, taking in the sights, smells, and sounds of nature. While the scene appeals to the senses, the greater response is happening at the level of vibration—of consciousness. Now close your eyes. Thoughts drop away further. Feelings of wellbeing amplify. Nature’s 64 INDIANA & YOGA MAGAZINE ISSUE I