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Work from home or Work on land?

In a sudden & extraordinary twist over just the last 50 to 100 years, human beings went from living life mostly outdoors (across the 150,000 years since the evolution of modern homo sapien) to living life mostly indoors. Unfortunately, this retreat into the indoors has had profound negative consequences for human wellbeing

Homo Sapiens evolved as a nomadic, hunter-gatherer species that would forage for food over large distances in groups. For this early man, indoors meant caves & such other natural features that offered protection while sleeping. However, as we started to settle down as farmers around 75,000 years ago, we started to create built spaces for various uses. However, even as farmers, much of human life continued to be spent outdoors tending to land & livestock. But in the last 100 years and especially in the last few decades, human beings have started to conduct a major share of our life indoors. For example, most of you are probably reading this while being indoors - at home, in an office, at a cafe...

This retreat from living on land to living indoors has led to human beings losing out on five critical elements of our wellbeing:

  1. The Sun
  2. Living soil
  3. Animals
  4. Natural products
  5. Natural supplements

We all know that not being exposed to enough sunlight can cause us to be deficient in Vitamin D. But the impact goes much deeper & broader than that. Not being exposed to enough natural light creates enormous disturbances in our natural 24-hour body rhythms. Myriad imbalances such as sleeplessness, memory loss and low alertness have been traced back to a disturbed circadian rhythm

Soil is not dead mud; it is a wonderful & interconnected world, teeming with all kinds of life. In earlier times, human beings would necessarily walk barefoot on such living soil, which would enable us to get the power of "grounding" or "earthing". While traditional societies have always understood the power of living intimately with soil, nascent modern research has also started pointing to the enormous power of "earthing" to reduce stress, internal inflammations & substantially increase our wellbeing

Man has always lived with animals in the natural environs of land. Allowing ourselves to return to this state of a natural & symbiotic relationship with animals (much beyond the highly circumscribed context of modern urban pets) can have profound consequences for our wellbeing

Natural supplements are vital additions to human diet that are available from the land. Whether it is turmeric or natural honey, living on land provides us a huge variety of supplements that add to the armoury that man has for long term healt

And natural supplements is not all that there is. Nature is equally fecund in giving us products to use. From leaves that can be moulded into plates to tree twigs that can be used as medicated toothbrushes, modern man has gradually given up on this vast treasure of natural products that are available from a life lived on land

It is time for today's urban human being to make a conscious & determined attempt to live on land. For city-dwellers, it might not be practical to live all the time on land. But we must make sure that we spend enough time on land to benefit from the great treasures of wellbeing that we would otherwise not have