Lessons Learned From Pachamama (Mother Earth)

It’s often said that a picture is worth a thousand words.  My new mantra is that travel is worth a thousand pictures.  Visiting far away lands and immersing yourself in the region’s history and culture can literally shift how you view and appreciate the world around you.

Witnessing first-hand the awe inspiring wonders of ‘the citadel’ known as Machu Picchu, it was easy to understand why the Incan civilization was built upon the foundation of daily homage to the life-giving sun and ubiquitous mountains.

In our hectic daily lives, it’s easy to forget that our very existence directly depends on the sun above and the earth below.  This lesson has not been lost on the Mestizos, direct descendants of the Spanish and Incas.

Life in the Andes has not changed much since the Spanish Conquest five hundred years ago.  People still plow their fields by hand and observe centuries-old rituals to pay their respects to the Pachamama, or Mother Earth.

The perspective and serenity I experienced at Machu Picchu filled me with the desire to maintain my newfound connection with nature.   I took part in ancient ceremonies with coca leaves to show respect to Mother Earth and watched locals honor the surrounding lands with gifts and celebrations.

In 2013 and beyond, I have resolved to live in a manner that allows me to reconnect with and appreciate the many natural blessings that we often take for granted and worse – do damage to.

Our environment is too fragile to ignore.  What are you willing to do to honor and protect it?

In the coming weeks I look forward to sharing my incredible experiences in South America in more depth and hopefully inspire you to explore and appreciate the world around you!

Stuart Brazell

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