Spirit Walks and Nature Talks 3

Understanding language of animals, pg 29 from Ted Andrew’s Nature-speaks

Still hunting: still and observing what surrounds you in a natural environment.
1. Feel and imagine yourself as part of the natural environment, the natural surroundings. E.g. imagine yourself as the leaf rustling in the breeze; feel the ticklish joy of the butterfly as it dances from flower to flower; let the songs of the birds fill your heart, noting how it affects the body and where.
2. Quietly observe the various sounds e.g. note how the animals and insects
respond to each other. If you must move and adjust your position for comfort, keep your movements slow and as infrequent as possible. The more still you are, the more likely you are to experiences curious animals coming in for a closer look at you.
Pay attention to how animals and plants use camouflage. Note how they move. Begin to keep a mental log of the number and kinds of insects, plants, and animals that you experience.

– keep a logbook of still hunting experience
– Keep track of dates, animals observed, and other unusual observations.
– Write down your moods, what you felt as you made your observations
– Research facts about the creatures and plants you saw
Benefits of still hunting: as you practice still hunting you’ll find yourself becoming increasingly observant, recognizing by intuition the presence of creatures before they become visible to you. You’ll see more around you than you ever imagined. Great ‘shamans’ are first great still-hunters. “Listen to the sounds around you (songs of birds/humming of insects). Listen to the sounds of your feet on Earth. Each sound awakens your inner symphony. It makes us more alert and perspective.

“As you walk along, stop whenever something catches your attention (flash of sunlight on the water, the brightness of a flower, the dance of a butterfly). Quietly note the colors that stand out for you and know that you are absorbing all colors of nature into you with each step you take.
“Feel the sun upon you. Feel it energizing you, increasing your circulation, making you more vibrant. Touch things as you walk. Feel the roughness and strength of trees. Feel the daintiness of a spring beauty, so tiny and yet powerful enough to grow among such diverse life. Step to the water’s edge. Hear/feel the stream. It may whisper to you. Feel your blood moving in rhythm with it. Feel yourself cleansed by being in its presence. Know that you’re healed.

Make a mental note of anything that stood out for you on your walk. Before the day’s over, study its significance. The symbology of it will often provide wonderful insight into things
occurring within our life. Offer a prayer of gratitude. Know that the benefits will grow
throughout the day and with each return visit.”

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