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Emma Swann, our Forest therapy guide, together with co-guides Margaret and Rose led a group of 15 in a 'forest bathing' (Sensing Nature) guided walk at Lysterfield Lake Park. This walk enabled everyone to get back in touch with their senses whilst exploring the glorious world around them.
We really felt connected with nature as we experienced the beauty of the plants and trees through touch and smell.
Barb enjoyed a moment of stillness leaning against a tall tree, with her eyes closed, breathing in the fresh air. She commented “I was blending in to the tree and feeling at one with nature.”
We shared the beautiful experience of honouring the forest with a tea ceremony. Emma guided us in expressing our respect and appreciation for the nature around us.
“We finish our forest bathing walks with a tea ceremony. The tea is often made using a leaf or flower from the forest we have been in, from a plant that the guides know is flavoursome and safe. We do this on every walk, as it gives the experience a touch of its Japanese origins and is a special chance for participants to 'taste' the forest, after experiencing it with their other senses. We offer the first cup of tea to the forest, as a way of showing our gratitude and respect for what it has offered us.” Emma Swann.
The 'Sensing Nature: A Vision For Inclusion' Project was supported by the Victorian Government through the Volunteer Innovation Fund.