Deborah Mendzef in Native Challenges. Discussion »
Oren Lyons, Faithkeeper-Iroquois
AUBURN, NEW YORK - Environmental wellness focuses on appreciating and protecting the natural beauty that surrounds our lives. It also includes having healthy and safe surroundings everywhere, whether it is your home, where you work or even where you play.
I was recently at a Native American health workshop and I had the pleasure of hearing Oren Lyons, a Native American faithkeeper, speak about the environment. Lyons was discussing how our natural resources are being depleted. Lyons stated that:
“we must remember that there is no alternative to water.”
Lyons spoke of the truth. As a society we have become materialistic, and a lot of that has to do with the advances in technology that have occurred over the years. However, we cannot forget about the connection between man and the earth and how our footprints are impacting Mother Nature today and how they will impact her in the future.
We must respect the environment, the air, water and land. We must try beyond our very best to preserve the resources that surround us, and to live a life that is conscientious of the environment.
Here are some tips to become more environmentally conscientious:
In Cayuga County, we are very lucky to have so many recreational areas throughout the county. I often hear residents say, "There is nothing to do here." We need to open our eyes to the beauty that surrounds us and take advantage of the opportunities that we have here. Go explore a walking trail or a park. I find that when you are engaged with nature, you in turn have more respect for nature. I personally am much more aware of my surroundings and how my behavior and actions have an impact on our air, water and land.
Environmental wellness also involves healthy and safe surroundings. To be healthy, we must live in a positive environment. We must keep people around us that are positive, supportive and not harmful to us. And these healthy environments should be where we live, where we work and where we play.
Deborah Mendzef has a master's degree in exercise and wellness promotion and works as the tobacco program coordinator for the Cayuga Community Health Network.
Editor's Note: This article originally appeared in Auburnpub.com and is being republished with permission.
posted December 21, 2011 6:30 am est
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