As I watch this “breathing” of mother earth it really brings my attention to awe of how powerful and important roots really are. In this video we see a collection of trees and the earth-surrounding dance with the influence of the wind.
This is certainly not some crazy haunted forrest or supernatural phenomenon, although that may be an entertaining way to look at it. CBC news Canada explained it well, “tree roots, spread out wide underneath the forest floor have detached from their moorings. The root systems heave under the ground when the trees are caught by wind, making them appear to “breathe.”
Even with roots detached from the depths of the forrest floor the trees remain steadfast. It is likely that without such a deep and widespread root system that the trees certainly would be knocked over and blown down by the gail force winds.
Roots are the primary connection of the tree to the earth, they are vast and strong. So to are our roots, they are our connection to the world – physically, emotionally, cognitively, and spiritually.
There are many roots within our body and each part of our system. It is all very unique. The amazing part of it is how intricately connected it all is; every part of our body communicates with itself.
What makes this is so amazing?
First, a quick glimpse at our physical roots:
We have our command centre – the nervous system: brain, spinal cord, sensory organs, and all nerves that connect the organs with the body. The skeletal system: bones, tendons (connective tissue linking muscles to bones), ligaments (connecting bones to bones), muscles (skeletal muscles, smooth muscles, cardiac muscles) which allow our body to move. Our blood vessels (arteries, veins, and capillaries) which transport blood throughout the entire body from the heart helping distribute nutrients and oxygen necessary for optimal function and growth.
Next, our cognitive roots:
Here is where some zing is packed into amaze. Cognition by definition is perception, the process of knowing, and knowledge. Our mind continually meshes and maps sensory, intellectual, and observational information (among others) together to create a unique one-of-a-kind mind which we may individually express in a plethora and variety of ways. Namely, creativity and expansion of the mind where an illumination of ideas spawn from internal and external influence and help the mind to grow.
Next, our emotional roots:
The zest, meaning, and feeling of life. I recall one of Tony Robbins videos highlighting a unique definition of emotion. “Emotions are energy in motion.” Emotions are a massive contributor, motivator, and director of our actions. They lay deep within the subconscious area of our heart.
Lastly, our spiritual roots.
Sometimes this topic may be a place of many varieties in opinion, this is not to claim any particular way of right or wrong, or define what spirituality is or is not. Some may chose to acknowledge the spiritual realm and some may not. My personal insight of spiritual roots is that it is the connection and recognition of ourselves individually to something greater than ourselves (each other, the universe, the cosmos, energy, forces, God). It is formless. A possible place where a foundation of our actions, decisions, and direction is fuelled. The important and fundamental point here is that there is communication between ourselves and other forces. It may be possible that the depths of our being are all connected and communicative just as the way the physical system of the body is.
This all brings to mind thoughts about the roots in our lives—metaphorically speaking.
Many teachers, mentors, and coaches in my life have referred to ‘roots’ in a variety of questions at various stages in my life. They are also commonly seen in biblical texts and profound quotes.
Perhaps the first question to really shed some light about roots is simply asking about what they are.
What are roots in relation to our personal lives?
Give it a moment to sink in…
What are roots in our personal lives?
Roots, I see them as a deeply expansive and supportive system that reaches out in search of a collective meaning and understanding of the world around us and the world within us. A system that is continuously encountering challenges, obstacles, and brick walls. Yet a system remains persistent and strong enough to break through, grow, and change course of direction to keep moving outward. Roots grow from the heart of our internal beliefs, passions, and core values. They are part of a foundation and an essence of our being.
One of the most profound things I’ve given great consideration and time exploring in my life are my ‘roots’ — core beliefs, core values, and my passions for life. Especially in relation to my physical, emotional, cognitive, and spiritual well-being.
Collectively, ‘roots’ are a combination of our core values, core beliefs, passions and virtues.
Do you know what your ‘roots’ are about?
Give yourself 137 seconds to note a few.
Start by identifying 3-5 for each area.
(note: it may be challenging I know it certainly was when I first began to really dig into them with heart.)
- What are your core beliefs?
- What are your core values?
- What are you passionate about?
Once you have identified some characteristics about your ‘roots’ you may consider giving focus to the following questions:
- What are your roots?
(Be clear, draw it out.)
- How deep are your roots?
(Why do you feel strongly about them? What is it that makes them strong?)
- How expansive are your roots?
(Do they overlap any areas in your life? Are they connected with something greater? How? what do they include or not include? Why?)
- What/ how do you feed your roots?
(Do you give or dedicate time to help them grow and develop?)
- How do you strengthen your roots?
(Is there a certain way you re-enforce them?)
- Where do your roots feel most connected?
(Is there a specific place or time? Do you feel connected now?)
- Who in your life is actively encouraging growth and expansion of your roots?
(Who the 5 people you share your time with? Do they represent and support your roots? Take a close look.)
- Where are you leading your roots?
(You are the one leading your life. Each decision and every choice you make direct the path you are on. Are you moving in a direction supportive of your ‘roots’?)