How do we get the most out of our skiing, snowboarding, tracking and other “mountain” trips? Utilize the transformation-conducive state of mind that naturally arises in elevated areas. Combine the enjoyment of a great vacation and a long-term impact of internal changes it can help achieve.
Why are mountains so good for reflection, meditation, and prayer?
The uniquely auspicious conditions in high mountain areas are based on the life-threatening environment our bodies naturally react to. High elevation, low air pressure, dehydration, etc. trigger the primary survival instincts that easily overwhelm our routine worries. They wipe a good deal of our persistent emotional background, bringing about a relatively clear state of mind, — thus, allowing ourselves to enjoy the moment or work with any issue way more thoroughly.
Obviously, each daily highland adventure has a happy end,– the body is alive and thriving. Plus, the obvious conventional bonuses provided by outdoor and well-being activities, exercising, change of scenery, leisure, pristine nature, clear air, etc. It is worth mentioning, a sauna is a great addition as it offers a similar to high elevation effect of “endangered-body”, just via high-temperature means.
The window of a long-term opportunity
The invigorating emotional relief is temporary, — it gradually wears out as we return to our normal lives. The reason is the causes of our emotional reactions are still there, just dormant, — until re-triggered when we are back home.
However fleeting, the “elevated” experience offers us:
1. A reference state of mind
The natural balance we can later remember and revert to, the feeling of internal harmony, resourcefulness, joy, and peace of mind. A helpful benchmark to match our daily mental state against, and fix it (something that can actually be done despite any external context).
2. Improved effectiveness [of any practice]
The period of time when we can address our emotional issues and their causes effectively, free (even if partially) from the generic emotional background skewing our perception normally. We are supported by location and time availability. We can make use of improved awareness, clarity of reasoning, ability to discern actual causes of our daily frustrations and deal with them. Make the most out of prescribed or selected practices: meditation, reflection, mindfulness, prayer, etc.
Become one with the mountain.