To Practice

Find a captivating spot outdoors, such as a flower-filled meadow or a forest glade. Sit down (or remain standing) and rest both hands, palms down, lightly on the thighs.

During this exercise you’re going to observe natural phenomena that capture your attention: for example, the texture of a tree’s bark, a field of flowers waving in the wind, or a bird calling deep in the forest. Don’t think about what you notice; just let your awareness flow from one observation to another.

Each time you see something, gently press a fingertip on your thigh to note the observation. Counting this way helps keep your concentration fully focused on your observation. Touching the leg also helps you feel that everything you see is part of you.

Use the ten fingertips on your hands to count your observations in batches of ten. Start with the tip of your left hand’s little finger and count across to your right hand, ending with its little finger. Go across as many times as you like. Two to three times (twenty to thirty observations) works well.

Another way to play Nature and Me is to focus on one object, such as a tree or a boulder, that has many interesting features. With each observation, you will discover more and more detail about your subject: perhaps you will notice its silhouette or shape, its color and texture, its immediate environment. The suggested number of observations for this version is fifteen to twenty. Children and adults who are more scientifically inclined usually prefer this second version of Nature and Me. After finishing this exercise, players enjoy sharing their discoveries in small groups.


“With an eye made quiet by the power of harmony, and the deep power of joy, we see into the life of things.”— William Wordsworth


From "The Sky and Earth Touched Me Online Resources" - Available at

Copyright © 2014 by Joseph Bharat Cornell • All Rights Reserved