This week I invite you to explore the world in the dark at night, using your night vision and bringing more awareness to your other senses. If it’s available to you, see if you can explore a natural area such as a hiking trail. If there are no natural areas nearby, you can still explore your backyard or even inside of your own home. Make sure that wherever you choose to explore is safe, and that you are not at risk of falling off any steep edges or into any water, better to check it out in the daylight first! For an even deeper experience, try it out barefoot.

I’d like to share a Wendell Berry poem to inspire your explorations in the dark. I learned this poem while I was working at the PINE Project, a nature connection school based out of Toronto.

To go in the dark with a light is to know
the light.
To know the dark, go dark. Go without
and find that the dark too, blooms and
and is traveled by dark feet and dark

Often the moment it gets dark we turn on a light, but this prevents us from experiencing how the world opens up in the dark, how our senses turn on in the dark. I have noticed that I am much more alert in the dark, I listen a lot more intently and I can focus in a different way. I notice subtle changes in colour and light, I sense every little movement. I feel very grounded and present in my body. How does it feel to explore the world without your dominant sense, what other parts of yourself become activated? How does your awareness shift? Night vision is a completely different way of seeing and sensing, how can it translate into a new way of thinking? Can the presence that is accessible through being in the dark translate into being present everyday?

I hope you enjoy whatever adventure you choose to embark on in the dark!

By Kira Gillingwater, Instagram: @swamp.daughter

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Land acknowledgment

OUR ECOVILLAGE is situated on unceded Indigenous lands. The Coast Salish Peoples are the guardians of these lands and waters where we live, work, pray, and play. Quw’utsun (Cowichan) is a historical place of gathering and Na’tsa’ maht Shqwaluwun/”one-heart one-mind” for many Indigenous peoples.

OUR ECOVILLAGE is committed to regenerate land and all ecosystems while acknowledging and respecting Indigenous knowledge that ensures thriving for all beings; we call this Permaculture.

OUR ECOVILLAGE is dedicated to continuously educating ourselves and our communities about the history and peoples of OUR bio-region, to assist in decolonization and re-villaging as a path towards peacemaking, from local to global.