Why We All Should Hug a Tree

 

trees

Trees (water color; June 2018)

 

This month I´m joining the JUNE 2018 ART CHALLENGE: Outdoor Fun! created by my wonderful friend Charlie, creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™.

Once again it is open to anyone who wants to participate with watercolor painting and/or simply pencil or pen & ink sketches.

If you’re participating in the June Art Challenge, use the hashtag #doodlewashJune2018 when you post on all your social networks, and if you also use watercolor add the #WorldWatercolorGroup hashtag as well.

 

Today´s prompt is “Trees”: And what else can I say then that I absolutely love trees!

Trees are beautiful, they help the planet and us by producing oxygen and combating climate change.

Trees provide lovely shade in the summer and thus shield us from ultra-violet rays.

Last but not least trees provide food and prevent soil erosion.

 

So why not just hug a tree and show them our gratitude? I certainly do this a lot and not in the metaphorical “conservation warrior” sense but literally! It´s been even scientifically validated that hugging trees or just being around them is good for you because it reduces stress levels. This is especially true in cities.

For instance, in Japan people practise ‘forest bathing’, where they spend quiet time absorbing the wisdom of ancient forests, taking long walks among the trees to stimulate their immune system. In Taoism, students are encouraged to meditate among trees, and it is believed that the trees will absorb negative energies, replacing them with healthy ones. Trees are seen as a source of emotional and physical healing, and themselves as meditators, absorbing universal energies.

 

Do you love trees? And have you ever hugged one – or plan to do so after you´ve read this post? 😉 I hope the answer to all three questions is yes, yes, yes! 🙂

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66 thoughts on “Why We All Should Hug a Tree

  1. I love your Pictorial Ode to Trees! and I would hug them except I know I would get very itchy! (the bane of being allergic to lots of things!)

    You know about Forest-bathing too! How fun! A friend of mine introduced me to the idea a few years back, and I actually try to practice a little of it when I do my runs and walks.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful painting, Sarah. I absolutely believe trees can absorb negative energy and give back good. I don’t have any science behind that belief, but I know what my senses tell me when I take a walk in the forest.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Oglach! And I don’t think we need science to proof what we all can feel. Trees are sentient beings I feel even if they can’t talk and walk like some did in LOTR. 😉
      Have a happy Sunday!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m a tree hugger, Sarah, and definitely a forest-bather! I believe that the trees benefit too from the affection. They are living creatures, sensitive to energies too. It’s a win-win for all. Great post and lovely painting. Happy Tree Hugging!

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  4. Yep, I’ve hugged a tree! I do love them, even though every now and then a storm takes one down and they do a lot of damage. But nothing is perfect, and I’m willing to put up with the risk in exchange for all the trees give us!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love trees and forest bathing. I also have planted many trees on my property and my father’s land, but I confess I haven’t hug a tree since my childhood. I love your watercolor artwork, Sarah. So beautiful. I could look at your trees all day.

    Liked by 2 people

    • How wonderful, Lisa! I’m so happy to be surrounded here with friends who also love and hug trees!
      Maybe you would like to take part in these challenges too? Mixed media is also welcome I think and I for one would definitely love to see your contributions! 😄💕

      Like

    • Oh–may I make a suggestion? Add your signature to your drawings (especially the gorgeous ones) so no one can grab them without permission.

      I’ve been teaching an online class on digital citizenship and plagiarism so it’s what I’m thinking about now! Sorry if I overstepped!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Of course you can, Jacqui! Suggestions are always welcome. And this is such an important aspect of creative work. I do actually sign all my work, and also these two trees but it might be a bit small to see in this shot. I could fo one step further and add a signature or logo on the photograph but I’ve read that these are very easy to be removed digitally. If people want to give your work out for theirs nothing’s going to stop them anyway. 😦

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Beautiful delicate trees, Sarah and wonderful thoughts about them. So that is what I do in Sweden, ‘forest bathing’! It feels amazingly healing, refreshing and rejuvenating! I’m not quite a tree hugger yet, but will give them a pat hello! 😀 Wishing you a great Sunday, my friend! 🌲

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you very much, Annika! And yay to that forest bathing in Sweden! 😄 Maybe try hugging a tree in a more remote place if you feel unsure about it. 😉 You’ll see – it’s wonderful! Have a lovely Sunday and a great week ahead! xx 😄

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Yes, I LOVE trees, hug trees, and plan to continue doing so as well as planting them. If I had to take down a diseased tree, I always plant 3 for it. Everywhere I go, given the opportunity, I plant more trees. My daughter had her wedding on April 22 which is Earth Day. She gave tree seedlings to all her guests hoping each would plant the tree. If I see a child hurting a tree, I try to explain that trees and plants all have feelings. There is scientific evidence of this so when we hug a tree, the tree feels it too. I talk to them and praise how well they are doing. I so appreciate everything about them. Um, I think I really love trees. 😉 Great post and I love your drawings of the trees.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you souch! I’m so glad you love and hug them too, Marlene! And what a wonderful idea your daughter had for her wedding! Planting trees is so important and I love your philosophy to replace every fallen tree with three new ones. And it’s great that you try to explain this to children when you witness them doing harm to trees. I do this too and mostly they understand, they just needed someone to point this out to them. I also talk to them and to all my plants as well. Like us all they need sometimes is bit of encouragement, right? And I never fail to praise them for their beautiful gifts of flowers and scent! 😄

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Beautiful paintings, Sarah, and tree-hugging is part of our family make-up. 🙂 We love the outdoors and trees top the list. Reading your post is timely because today we went to our town’s local annual festival and I got a henna tree tattoo. 🙂 She did a beautiful job. Anyway, great post and thanks for sharing this truth. Happy Saturday! ❤🌲🌳

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much, Lauren! And how I would love to see that lovely henna tree tattoo! I’ve got a couple of pendant earrings showing a tree with its roots that I just love to wear. Hope you had a lovely time at the festival! Hugs&much love! 😄💕🌳

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m a tree girl … the apple didn’t fall far from my father’s tree – he was a lifelong lover of them and when he died and the florist asked my mother what she would like to go on his coffin she was perplexed and then said …. what a shame it can’t be a tree! Your watercolors are beautiful – daddy would have loved them too and I am delighted that you are participating in this challenge because we get to sit back and reap the fruits of your labors 😉 xxxxxxxxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aww – thank you so much, Fiona! Obviously I would have loved to have met your father, he must have been simply wonderful and I’m glad you the apple didn’t fall far from his tree. 😄 And wouldn’t it be nice if our last resting places would all be beside a tree?
      Have a very beautiful Sunday dear friend and pet the trees hello from me. 😉 xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

      Liked by 1 person

      • I have a piece of silver birch that comes from the copse of those beautiful ethereal where we scattered my father. They thinned out the arbor just before I travelled to France to live. I took a saw and cut a piece – one day I intend to make 6 tealight holders from it – one for my mother, one for me and one each for my daughters. Then when we are all together we can light them all at our table. You would LOVE the trees here … so many varieties – we have our own woodland which forms part of the garden and I am very happy to hug the trees from you every day 🙂 xxxxxxxxxxxx

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, Fiona! That’s such a beautiful idea! I can already see these tealight holders all alight with you and your mum and all your daughters sitting around them, bathed in that beautiful warm candlelight in my mind. And your father will see it and be with you all in that light!
        Enjoy your woodland and all those wonderful trees! 😄 xxxxxxxxxx

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I have a neighbor who is fighting for years to cut most of the tree around the neighborhood as she complains they bring dirt and loose to many leaves over autumn.Me and the other neighbor clearly said it is never gonna happen not even over our dead bodies but her relationship with tree might explain why she looks always so miserable and bitter🤷🏻‍♀️I love open my windows and see trees and bushes…..and I feel lucky every day😊🌳

    Liked by 2 people

    • Wow! That woman sounds nasty and downright loony! So glad you and all the other neighbours are fighting her off – does she not know how important trees are? And who cares about the fallen leaves? They do that only in Autumn. Try to explain her the next time you have to deal with her that the whole area would be prone to land erosion and is she keen to have her house swept away in a downpour?
      You and me both feel lucky everyday we can look at the trees and that’s how It should be! 😊❤

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      • I think a such reasoning is far too complicated for her brain🤣we are three neighbors and thankfully 2 out of three like nature and dogs….she has a problem with those too if bigger then a chiwawa but she hasn’t taught her kids not to litter yet🤷🏻‍♀️
        Oh my what a rant sorry 😘

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ah, yes there are people like that every where. My neighbour complaints because I feed singing birds like blue titmouse! Can you believe it?! 😂
        Have a beautiful week my friend! 😘

        Liked by 1 person

      • 🤷🏻‍♀️people !nothing we can do about them except keep smiling and show them how nicer life is with a bit more happiness and less bitterness😉😎🤩

        Liked by 1 person

    • Oh yes! They are magnificent indeed! So tall and broad and majestic – I’m convinced they have loads of tree fairies hidden inside. 😉
      Apropos fairies – thanks to you and your comment about it in your conversation with Tinker Bell, I’ve now read The Velveteen Rabbit! I absolutely love, love, love it!!! 😄❤

      Like

  11. I like the idea of “forest bathing”. On past cycling trips, I’ve often thought of how the trees are my friends. They look pretty, give me shade and serve as a wind break. Your trees look especially nice, Sarah. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Chris! I knew you would appreciate trees on your trips and hikes. And don’t forget that taking pictures of them is also quite cool. 😉 Cheers!

      Like

  12. I like trees but never hugged one 🙂 I think this is a good idea and it would be cool gather people with the like mind to get together and hug trees in the park.

    You post reminds me of my neighbor’s car license tag that says “tree huger” or something like this.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That would definitely be a lovely event! But it’s also quite nice to just hug a tree on your own. Maybe choose a remote place if you feel a bit weird about doing it first time. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Giving pause to the livings things (tree) that make it possible for these living things (people) to breathe. Wonderful article, Sarah. I really enjoyed learning about the Japanese practice of “forest bathing.” I think I will do that today. My immune system could use a boost and so could my soul.

    Your tree paintings are wonderful – I like how you’ve let the water express itself in your paint. I’m working on the “cartoon” of a forest I plan to paint as a mural this summer.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much, Shari! And I’m so glad you like the idea of forest bathing and will give it a try – let all the good energy of the trees flow into you! Sending you additional healing thoughts and wishes!

      And thank you for your lovely compliment – it felt quite Zen to just let the water decide where it wanted to go which seemed to fit my thoughts in this post.
      Hope you’ll share pictures of your mural when it’s done, if not on your blog then I would love to see them via email!! Happy painting, my friend! 😄

      Liked by 1 person

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