A growing body of research now believes the powerful idea that because humans evolved in nature our brains must also be wired to connect with nature. Do you ever wonder why spas, yoga studios and online meditation videos often play sounds of chirping birds, ocean waves, or soothing rain? It has to do with the remarkable concept that our brains are “naturally” happy and thrive in the great outdoors.
Alarming statistics indicate that American kids on average spend more time in front of a TV or computer screen (1,023 hours per year) than they do learning in school (900 hours per year). The situation has become so dire that researcher and author Louv has appropriately coined the term “Nature Deficit Disorder” to capture the seriousness of the problem.
It is a curious sign of our times that even as young people are more adept in using Facebook, Twitter and the Internet than their parents or older relatives, they are also becoming more dependent on that very same technology to the point of social isolation.