“In every walk with nature one receives far more than one seeks” ~ John Muir
“With the first step, the number of shapes the walk might take is infinite, but then the walk begins to define itself as it goes along, though freedom remains total with each step: any tempting side road can be turned into an impulse, or any wild patch of woods can be explored. The pattern of the walk is to come true, is to be recognized, discovered.” This is what A.R. Ammons, says in ‘A Poem is a Walk’
Every new walk the Karavan embarks upon, the above words assume different shapes on my mindscape. Last month the musafirs took a walk down the sinuous paths leading to some secrets of nature, nestled, scooped amidst the derelict Aravalli ranges. The Bhatti mines, sandwiched between Delhi and Haryana, still carry the scars of human indifference due to mindless quarrying.
But after being declared a notified wildlife sanctuary in the year 1991, with dedicated afforestation and accumulation of rainwater, today it boasts of five beautiful lakes, adding a peaceful existence in the noise and clamour of a bustling at the seams metropolis.
Blue Bulls, Black-naped hare, peacocks, several species of butterflies & porcupines can be sighted in the early hours of dawn & dusk. The region is a crucial green lung of the city, a natural barrier preventing the flood plains & the advancing aridity of the Aravallis.
“Nature is full of lessons we can draw from and inspire our daily lives”.
So much of our time is spent inside the walls of our arranged lives that we distance ourselves from US. Nature has a way of tearing down these walls, and freeing us from the insipid. FREEDOM is a lesson. Nature loves independence. Lao Tzu says that Nature doesn’t hurry, yet it accomplishes everything. Have PATIENCE, you are sure to have your share as well, for a day.
We tried living out of our box for a day, stopping that urge to rearrange and plan things. Explored new trails, discovered new friends.
Sometimes we walked side by side, other times one behind the other, taking turns with the lead. If one got tired, someone shared their energy with them. Someone helped another unburden, another cleared a thorny vine, or gave a hand helping them cross over a rocky turn. Walking together taught us to SHARE
Nature is a curve, it doesn’t believe in straight lines or right angles. This is how we CLIMBED up slopes.
A green sprouting from a rocky nook somewhere might have inspired in us to persevere. Faced with hurdles how often do we try to work ourselves around them, and not take the easiest path,out. The lesson? STRUGGLE isn’t a bad thing. It’s the foundation of vitality.
First, recall your strength. When plants are cut by gardeners or eaten by animals, they grow back, often bigger, faster and stronger than they were before.
Humans were made to ADAPT. Just remember that the next time you say “I can’t “. Adaptation also requires REINVENTING, a root always finds it’s way to quench it’s thirst and a branch twists and turns to touch the sun’s rays, they change course to live.
The long trail , twisted and dusty, like a forlorn dream , echoed like a lost piece of music in the sounds of the cow bells, drifting across the sands. The breeze uplifted the spirits and memories dropped like autumn leaves. One season was turning, as another, awaiting to unfurl. Life flows, we will depart and return, to leave, and to meet again. Nature’s another lesson is that CHANGE is the only permanent, in the cycle of life. And that cycle is always fluid.
Make time to catch the sunrise or sunset ! Walk or run through a forest of trees or on sand! Gaze at the vastness and beauty of the blue sky and water ! The possibilities of nature are infinite.
As seasons change, we are guided to learn acceptance and non-resistance. A green leaf doesn’t resist turning red when autumn approaches. Trees don’t resist leaves falling when winter arrives. They stand deeply rooted in the ground, with their vulnerability out in the open and branches spread wide, surrendering to the Universe. SUBMISSION is not a sign of weakness.
“Walking is one of the most important things in the life.’ In Japan, the foot is considered to be the Second Heart.
Walking inspires and promotes conversation that is grounded in the body, and so it gives the soul a place where it can thrive.
It was a day in which intimacy was not only experienced but set fondly in the landscape of memory. We talked of many things, some informative and some completely outrageous, and quite a few stories emerged that day. Nature teaches us to LISTEN and CREATE.
Carl Jung said that when you walk with naked feet how can you ever forget the Earth. With our souls dipped in sand and water we took so much of the Earth that day, enough to last us a few days, at least.
All living things in nature are in a state of perpetual communication. Have you ever seen two birds run into each other when they are flying in a flock? COMMUNICATION doesn’t always need words. Body language, sensing others` energy can say much more than a spoken word. Be mindful of your thoughts as the energy you dispel affects everyone around you.
So much of beauty and meaning of our life is lost under the noise of stress and struggle, sitting at the lakeside in quietude unravels a few answers you might be searching all this while. The lake is a great listener, it will help you DE-CLUTTER and REALIGN.
Everything in nature is always moving, always working. Even when animals and plants are in dormant phases, this rest is a kind of active measure for CONSERVING ENERGY. Nature thrives on INTERDEPENDENCE, every component in interlinked, that’s how energy flows.
Nature is both evolution and extinction, life and death, growth and decay. She is a mosaic of heat and cold, light and darkness, fragility and awesome power.
Nature is neither good nor bad, benevolent nor judgemental, sentimental nor discriminatory.
As we turned away from that amazing blue water sprawled like an oasis, dragging ourselves back into the humdrum of our lives, we marched back slowly down that eight kilometer trail, not yet; ready to leave, I am sure most of us must have made a silent promise to return, someday. For the present we take back fossilized memories of blue, brown and green hues.
And as, in nature, the Karavan will meet again on a different trail, another place, travel on a new road creating another new experience. Till then, relive those moments once more.
See all of you soon !!!
Note: It is best to venture into Asola Bhatti in a group; though the area is protected and nearby the urban residential area, it is remote inside the sanctuary. Also, be careful of the monkeys , as it’s not their natural habitat as they were given this home to ward their menace away from urban spaces.
Disclaimer: The photographs have been sourced from the event page on Facebook “ Delhi’s Secret Lakes – Nature Karavan in Asola Bhatti Wild Life Sanctuary.”
The scientific facts have been sourced from various articles on Google
The article has been written by Bela Upadhayay. Bela is an avid writer and reader. She is a regular member of Delhi Karavan and has participated in several of our walks and events.