‘Tree-Talk Bathing’ for Health and Well being

SAMVEDNA SHARMA
My recent participation in the eleven-year old ‘Tree-Talk’ Anniversary day get-together under the Banyan tree, was an enriching experience. Evergreen Banyan tree stood like Lord Shiva with hanging prop root tresses showering its blessings on the green minds assembled underneath.
There is growing recognition of the many varied benefits of trees and shrubs for human wellness and health. From capturing carbon, flood management, reducing water and air pollution, and a wide range of health improvements.
In today’s screen dominated lifestyle it’s easy to become disconnected from the natural world around us, especially with so much amazing info and films online about incredible forests , woodlands and wildlife all over the world.
Many of us, in these times do not have access to forests, but there is always nature around us. Take the opportunity to glimpse Spring, springing in trees nearby you, give a moment to the birds; open the window and close your eyes.
The term ‘Tree-Talk Bathing’ means the staying around the trees. It gives five-senses experience from walking in a woods, view and breathe in a woods. ‘Tree-Talk Bathing’ involves walking through a beautiful, well wooded natural forest or garden and getting absorbed in the peaceful blissful surroundings. It can be expressed as kind of walking meditation under the trees. ‘Tree-Talk Bathing’ means to immerse oneself in the nature and experience a well wooded atmosphere to improve one’s mental and physical health. ‘Tree-Talk Bathing’ helps humans in several ways, it strengthens the immune system, lowers blood pressure, decreases stress, anxiety, depression and above all rejuvenates soul & mind. It is one of the most effective way to fight stress problems, it is a kind of “Stress Management Technique” which persons of all age groups can follow in the interest of sound body & mind.
This technique ‘Tree-Talk Bathing’ facilitates to reduce stress, promote a sense of safety, health wellbeing and strengthens interaction among fellow residents.
‘Tree-Talk Bathing’ helps to reduce the discomfort of extreme hot weather, manages air pollution and noise pollution well, it is also linked to management of social conflict due to the violent behaviour of citizens living in the congested over crowded environment of cities. Trees have also been linked to faster recovery from various kinds of body & mental illnesses.
‘TREE-TALK BATHING’ IN J&K
In Jammu and Kashmir, Tree–Talk Campaign spearheaded by acclaimed Writer and IFS Officer O P Sharma Vidyarthi has taken firm foothold in the minds of citizens. The Tree-Talk Programme has just completed eleven years of its Biodiversity awareness journey. The programme launched on 19th Dec 2010 on the eve of UN declared International Year of Forests -2011 and International Biodiversity Decade 2011-2020, has organized over 1165 interesting interactive get-togethers to spread tree related consciousness in the interest of conservation & preservation of natural heritage.
Tree -Taking Responsibility for the Earth and Environment
TALK – Telling All Linking Knowledge: Trees talk is an interactive, Science-based program for students, scholars, intellectual minds and civil society people. The campaign is known for participation of many subject matter specialists, experienced Forest Officers, intellectuals and other facilitators all joining hands to silently offer ‘Tree Talk Bathing’ experience to the participants in particular and people of the Jammu and Kashmir in general.
Tree-Talk Campaign has many goals & objectives:
1) To encourage awareness and appreciation for the heritage value of trees and cure the problem of “Tree Blindness”. Knowing plants, trees in the field is effective way of familiarizing with neighborhood diversity.
2) To enlighten and spread awareness about the micro & macro level of Biodiversity, plant animal relations, folk taxonomy, origin of vernacular names and scientific names, traditional and modern usages, scientific technologies and green innovations to conserve age-old eco-friendly practices, use of wild fruits, vegetables, medicines, teas, colours and art and craft to boost sustainable use of bio-resources, conservation of biodiversity in critical habitats and generate livelihoods for local communities under Eco-tourism initiatives.
3) ‘Tree Talk Bathing’ aims to foster healing through connectivity to nature in general and tree diversity in particular.
Green walk through trees is refreshing, rejuvenating, nourishing and healing experience. Forest is much more than a simple collection of trees, it is a kind of green practitioner to soothe our tiring nerves. It turns mental status of mind more positive, relaxes muscles and restores tranquility of the mind. With greener vibes and thoughts, Tree Talk revitalizes whole body & mind with positive engagement thereby lessens all kinds of worldly tensions especially during present Covid confusion and stress.
As Tree Talk enthusiast, I found Tree Talk sessions quite interesting, style of expression mesmerizing, natural heritage interpretation superb, inputs get etched in the psyche of listeners. Several known unknown wild herbs when used to develop beverages, cuisines ,curries & cakes, it is not only innovative expression but consumption of such foods allures kids to leave junk foods and develop taste for traditional cultural cuisines.
On the occasion of Tree-Talk’s 11th anniversary organised at Manda in Jammu outskirts, eleven plant saplings of great cultural and medicinal significance were planted by participants to mark unveiling of the 11th anniversary milestone. Like all participants, I felt not only joyful but rejuvenated my inner soul after a long dreary spell of indoor life due to summer surge of COVID this year. Let our kids, youth and elders participate in interactive sessions of Tree-Talk to seek blessings of nature which is so kind, benevolent and merciful provided we learn to live in harmony with it.
(The Author is Tree-Talk enthusiast and Research Scholar pursuing PhD from University of Jammu)