happy may day! i hope that you’re having a beautiful start to your month. i just love may – it’s a transition month. from spring to summer (for me at least). and it is almost always ner perfect weather. this month we’ve got a lot going on in our home – visitors from sweden!! two different weeks out of the month. plus, we’re spending a week in NYC! aaaand my love turns 30!!
with all of the excitement ahead for this month on my mind, today’s quote from the dalai lama brought me back down to earth, yet seemed to connect a lot of what i am thinking and feeling right now with what’s really important in life. so, i thought i’d combine a little photo challenge with my dalai lama series this week. it just made sense to me.
15. Be gentle with the earth.
so many times, we seem to think the rules of living, no matter who has made them up, are rules that are just all about us. rules of living so that we can be happy, successful, at peace, etc. and, while they are that, they are also so much more. they are suggestions on how we live life with integrity – making the best impact that we can, while we chase our own dreams and live life to the fullest.
today’s rule is one of those that, if we follow it, will make a huge impact on our world – individually and globally. i believe that it is so important for us to realize that we do not own the earth, but that we are simply stewards of it… caretakers.
swedes have an idea/belief/philosophy/law that is known as the freedom to roam. Allemansrätten gives a person the right to access, walk, cycle, ride, ski, and camp on any land—with the exception of private gardens, the immediate vicinity of a dwelling house and land under cultivation. it also gives the right to pick wild flowers, mushrooms and berries (provided one knows they are not legally protected), but not to hunt in any way. swimming in any lake and putting an unpowered boat on any water is permitted unless explicitly forbidden. visiting beaches and walking by a shoreline is permitted, providing it is not part of a garden or within the immediate vicinity of a residence.
it basically means that you can camp, walk, or be anywhere that is not a private yard-garden-farm. in other words, no one person owns any major property in sweden. everyone has access. why? because land is not something, according to swedes, that can be owned by a person. we have the privilege to enjoy it. however, it is our responsibility to care for it. and we should be more than willing to do our part in keeping this world as amazing as it is.
isn’t that simply amazing? (oh, how i miss being surround by swedish laws/thoughts/beliefs)
in my opinion, in addition to taking care of the earth, living as greenly and environmentally friendly as possible, it is also important to be aware of and appreciate nature. but, not just nature, the whole world around us. all of earth – the people, the beauty, the moments that make up our lives.
so, for the month of may, inspired by the dalai lama, i decided that i’d create a photo challenge all about color! the earth is bursting with color – both natural and man-made. and it is the color that gives life, evokes emotion, and affects our moods. up here in the northern atmosphere, we are beginning a month that is known for bright colors bursting forth everywhere – life is finally coming back to our part of the world. for those of you in the southern part of the world, autumn and all of its warm, muted colors are beginning to appear.
so, just grab your camera or your phone and take a photo every day of the color of the week. be aware of the colorful, beautiful world around you. you may be in the country or in the middle of the city or somewhere in-between, but i am certain that there are gorgeous, vibrant colors everywhere. so, share them with me – with each other!
this month let’s bask in the vibrant colors that surround us. snap a photo every day of the color of the week and share it with us on instagram or Facebook or your blog using the hashtags #bllphotoaday and #ajourneyofcolor. i can’t wait to see all of the amazing colors of your life!n
I always knew the Swedes were more civilised! In Oz, they have just recently increased the cost to camp in National Parks, and camping in undesignated areas is generally forbidden. Which seems crazy, given how big our country is!
I know, right? The Swedes really do have a great perspective on so many things. I respect that country so much. That is really, really crazy to hear – as there is so much land in Australia!
Did you ever read the words to “This Land is Your Land” by Woody Guthrie? These kind of property rights is exactly what the song is about.
Generations of elementary classrooms missed out on the point of the song.
You know, I have actually re-read them as an adult. I didn’t understand what I was singing when I was a kid, but there was something that made such sense to me. Thanks for reminding me! 🙂