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Under the Influence of Sweetgrass


There is no denying that I am a bibliophile and always have a book to read close at hand. My latest read has brought me moments of clarity, profound sadness and joy. "Braiding Sweetgrass" by Robin Wall Kimmerer is one of those books that can change lives. It has changed mine and how I relate to the natural world around us.


I have always spent a lot of time outdoors hiking, walking barefoot in the grass, sitting by the ocean, running along the shoreline out of the purest joy one can feel in nature. There is that deep satisfying connection and grounding that happens whenever I can get out and get lost in the beauty nature offers to all of my senses.


"Braiding Sweetgrass" clarified for me the importance of honoring the earth and everything that encompasses. Every living part of this natural earth is there to guide, heal and teach and yet somehow we have all been removed from understanding these gifts in our day to day busyness. We may use them without acknowledging them until we have exhausted and extinguished what has been given and without giving back.


The indigenous people of this land understood this vital connection while we refused to listen. We have desecrated this land and forgotten the people that were here before us. We have lost compassion for the earth and for one another. Isn't it time to turn this thing around? Isn't it time to care for this land that feeds us, provides water, food and medicine?


Today is Indigenous Peoples Day and I am going to be honoring it by burning my sweetgrass and sage incense, walking barefoot in the grass, working in the garden and taking time to give gratitude. Please share your comments as to how you want to honor this day. I highly recommend this incredible book and if you can, get out there and do something to give back to our Mother Earth.

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2 Comments


Paula Goodbar
Paula Goodbar
Oct 12, 2020

Thank you, Wally, for sharing your experience reading this book. There are so many sacred moments to experience in life and we often choose to walk the path of the mundane rather than see, listen and appreciate the bounty that gives us life.

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Wally Bornmann
Wally Bornmann
Oct 12, 2020

I'm only a few chapters into the book "Braiding Sweetgrass" but I'm enjoying it. The thing that has caught my interest thus far is the story of Robin's father pouring coffee on the ground in the morning. I find it interesting how what had been seen as a "ritual" hadn't started as such. The action was one I understand well since I brew coffee with a French Press and have brewed more than a few pots of coffee over a campfire as well as my tip coffee pot will attest to. I've poured coffee on the ground.


I like this "ritual" because it was never intended to be one. It began as something practical and eventually was given a place…


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