The Japanese word komorebi (木漏れ日) means “branches” in English, but it’s also a spiritual concept, which roughly translates to “sunlight shines through trees.” Komorebi, as a spiritual concept, rather than just a word, proves that there’s always more than one way to view anything in life. The only difference is in translation and how an individual’s perspective might affect the situation.
The Problem with Perspective
The problem with individual perspective is that it lies. External stimuli from light and sound affect our concentration, which can wreak havoc on an unfocused mind. But the same is true for internal stimuli. Our thoughts, emotions, senses, and intentions create the world around us. Sometimes we misinterpret or misconstrue messages received from external stimuli, whether that be our surroundings or other people, and our minds and bodies react accordingly.
There’s both a sociological and psychological response to any stimuli, which falters our perspective. We might think we know what’s happening, but we never really do. And this realization is what keeps us narrow-minded, living in fear, and unwilling to take chances.
Komorebi Teaches Us Mindfulness
We are creatures of habit, and for this reason, we often struggle to think outside the proverbial box. We learn to fear the unknown and question the unthinkable, such as a word meaning anything more than just its literal translation. Sometimes we have to see things to believe, which is why concepts like komorebi are so beautiful.
Komorebi, as a spiritual concept, is an invitation for us to change our perspective of life and how we view our world.
While walking through a dense patch of trees, many people often stare down at the forest floor to watch their step. Or they rush through their nature hike and miss all of the beautiful things happening around them.
Komorebi, or rays of sunlight that shine through the trees.
Zephyr, or a gentle west wind that rustles and awakens all the green things.
Or, the dawn chorus of birds perched high up in the canopies and singing to their mates to let them know they made it through the night.
Through words like komorebi, we can retrain our perspective on life. We can reteach our minds to focus on the here and now, practice mindfulness, and exercise present moment awareness. And in return, we can start to learn to appreciate our world and all the beauty it offers.
Enjoy this relaxing video and walk through the Hoh Rainforest in Washington, United States. Or, set out on an adventure to gain a new perspective and experience komorebi for yourself.
Be sure to share your komorebi pictures in the comments below!