Before you read more, answer these questions:
* What do you see in this painting?
* How do you feel about it?
* What do you think about it?
* What questions do you have?
It continues and expands upon concepts I started in the first painting, Blessings Beyond Our Energy Centers.
For example, you can see the 7 traditional chakras (also known as energy centers) located within the human body in an overlapping series rising up the spinal column.
Together they encompass the entire body, collectively referred to as our aura or kinetic sphere.
You can also see wave patterns swirling around the body. They are energetic currents carrying information that is flowing into, through and around our human bodies to and from our somatic energy centers in communication with other organisms.
By organisms, I mean other animals ( insects, etc.), and as depicted in Arboreal Ancestors, I mean that organisms also include trees and the Earth itself!
The female figure’s heart center (4th chakra) holds the same position as the tree’s heart center, and her energy flow is integrated with the tree: you can see circling up the trunk.
This is why we humans feel so good when we sit on the ground and lean up against a tree: the soles of our bare feet are in direct communication with the Earth and our bodies are swimming in the tree’s heart center energy.
When we humans keep our energy centers aligned, we feel at ease, enlivened, joyful and free.
This is even easier to experience in nature, especially around trees. We know this feeling anecdotally: a walk outside improves our mood, no matter the weather!
Moreover, scientific studies show that leisurely forest walks measurably improve our health by decreasing cortisol, elevating our mood, increasing immunity (including activity of natural killer cells), and decreasing blood pressure and heart rate (1).
Not only that, forest bathing increases our creativity and problem-solving skills (2)! It works: I often use nature walks as a moving meditation to enhance my creativity and realize solutions.
Studies even show that contact with natural environments is associated with more community cohesion and substantially lower crime rates (1), and increased vegetation in urban residential areas is associated with lower rates of assaults, robberies and burglaries (3).
I’ve a tendency to geek out on the scientific studies, so I’ll stop there for now and get back to the painting – but isn’t that data super cool?!
Ok, back to Arboreal Ancestors: as you might imagine, the name of this piece is a show of respect to trees as not only our partners in a healthy planet, but our very ancestors too!
While we don’t intellectually understand much of what trees communicate with us (it’s a predominantly somatic subtle-energy information exchange that we can learn to attune to), they are absolutely less essential to our well-being even without our conscious awareness engaged.
Back to your original questions. Does the information provided here validate your feelings and thoughts?
Does it answer your questions?
Or inspire more?
And finally, what do you want to see me create next?!
Let me know in a comment below!!
Want to see the painting emerge from blank canvas to it’s finished state? Follow my Instagram @hannahsanfordart to see it evolve as I post the works in progress!!
1. Weinstein et al, BioScience Vol65, Issue 12, 2015, p1141-1153
2. Wolfe et al, Landscape and Urban Planning, vol 108, issues 2-4, Nov-Dec 2012, p112-122