What kind of relationship can you have when you’re on a camping and canoeing or kayaking adventure, floating down a creek – all by yourself?
“All advancement, all success and all achievement start with personal relationships and creativity.” Mark Victor Hansen
Here’s one definition that the dictionary gives for relation: “A logical or natural association between two or more things; relevance of one to another; connection.”
Camping And Canoeing And A Relationship With Nature
Actually, there are a number of relationships that you get involved in when you’re just floating down a creek. And not all of those relationships are with other people.
Have you ever heard the saying, “commune with nature”?
There’s another dictionary word for you: commune – “To converse intimately; exchange thoughts and feelings.”
When you “commune with nature” you’re involved in a relationship with nature – a conversation so to speak.
When you get all wrapped up in nature the way I do that conversation becomes very intimate. My mind opens up completely, taking in all that I see.
I slip into a state of meditation.
“God wants to talk to each of us; we merely need to start the conversation in prayer or meditation and patiently listen.” Mark Victor Hansen
As Mark Victor Hansen states above, meditation is one way to start a conversation with God. All you need to do is listen – God speaks to you, and gives you guidance about how to be successful in life.
It’s not a conversation that you normally talk about with other people because it’s so personal. But a healthy relationship with God teaches you a lot.
When I’m and canoeing on the creek all by myself, I have a relationship with nature. And I have a relationship with God. I listen. I allow my mind to think whatever thoughts it wants, and I go into meditation.
Then, suddenly, nature and God talk to me – telling me all kinds of little secrets.
They whisper to me through the leaves that rustle in the breeze. They sing to me with the screech of an eagle floating on the wind and the chirping and tweeting of the birds sitting in the trees.
They call to me as I go camping and canoeing or along my little adventure from the splash of a bass as it leaps for a meal of insect, the coo of a Doe calling to her Fawns (or snorting at me to tell me that she’ll tolerate my presence – but only from a distance), the croaking of a frog as it sings its nightly melody, and the racket of the raccoon as it searches through my pots and pans looking for food scraps that I left behind.
Yes, there are wondrous relationships for you when you sit all alone in the right surroundings, and just listen to nature, and to God.
You find tranquil contentment, an inner calm, an escape from the stress of everyday pressures. It’s a marvelous get-away that I cherish.
And Relationships With People Too
There is also the relationship that you have with other people as you float down the creek.
Keep in mind when you’re involved in an activity that you are never absolutely alone. There’s always someone waiting for you to come back. Let them know that you need to get away sometimes, but that you will be back.
Meditation cleanses the mind and helps you organize your priorities. But you still can’t live all of your life without the support of others.
And on the creek, there are those other people out there. The only way to not have them around you as you float along is to stop for the day when you first see them.
That can be good of course. You might spend the afternoon meditating, or fishing. You might even take a sketchbook along and draw what you see. Maybe a depiction of the creek upstream with canoes coming your way.
Or spend the time writing in your journal. Just let your mind wander, and write down the thoughts that come. You might surprise yourself with what you read after you’re done.
And you have an obligation to those people. You might notice that they’re sometimes inconsiderate, and make so much noise that they scare away the wildlife. Sometimes they throw trash in the water, or onto the banks. You can’t make them be polite or responsible, but you can lead by example, and some will follow.
So when you’re on a camping and or kayaking adventure set some time aside to observe and learn. Absorb the wonder and the knowledge of God and nature.
And show others the proper way to relate to nature. Be a great leader – not a rude follower.