Whole Life Magazine

October/November 2019

Issue link: https://digital.copcomm.com/i/1173846

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Page 9 of 31

10 wholelifetimes.com 1. Changing human actions to alter the course of climate crisis and the sixth mass extinction event begins by considering what type of world we might shape if we had no use for the word "nature." 2. Practicing nature-relatedness breaks down perceived barriers to lead a life respectful of the fact that you are a part of nature too. When you talk of the human world as separate from the natural world, it creates a mental polarization. The "us" is humans, the "them" is nature. When you seek to connect to nature by going for a hike in the woods or a walk in the park, you reinforce this duality. Nature is OUT there rather than IN all of us. 3. Every millisecond of your life, you are in a constant dance of exchange with all of life on Earth as you breathe, eat, create, and expend energy because you are an interdependent part of nature. 4. Why begin a nature-relatedness practice? Self-care. Research is emerging from academics specializing in psychology and behavioral science at universities around the globe indicating that if you identify more as a part of nature, you experience reduced anxiety, increased creativity, and heightened empathy for all forms of life. Could it be that the personal joy you experience when you practice nature-relatedness is what is needed to address the climate crisis? Very possibly. 5. This research indicates that the more nature-related your identity (and nature-relatedness is measurable), the more you seamlessly begin to adopt ecologically friendly habits in all areas of your life. Healthy people generally avoid being self-destructive. If you understand that the rest of the natural world is an extension of yourself, you act with caregiving intent. 6. The Mindful Kitchen uses the acts of cooking and eating to help you develop a nature-relatedness practice, wherever you are, to start a journey toward becoming the change for personal and planetary well-being, from head to hands to habit. 7. There are three elements of practicing nature-relatedness through cooking and eating: storytelling, beginner's mind, and rituals. 8. Nutritious recipes can be served up with a nourishing story that builds your awareness of the collaboration of people, plants, animals, wind, water, soil, and billions of micro-organisms that make every bite possible. As you change the narrative of your daily bread, you begin to ask new questions from different perspectives (beginner's mind) that heighten your sense of wonder and organically build new knowledge suited to your corner of the world. 9. How do you turn thoughts into actions? Rituals. By sensually making recipes with new intent set by storytelling and beginner's questions, you can pepper everyday pleasure with purpose. 10. The Mindful Kitchen is a recipe for you to take the first steps toward becoming the change for personal and planetary well-being. If you are hungry for more, join The Mindful Kitchen's community at one of their events or digital programs. Visit www.themindfulkitchen.org. Vegetarian Cooking to Relate to Nature eat here now Photos: Xavier D. Buendia TOP TEN TIPS OF THE MINDFUL KITCHEN By Heather Thomas

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