Personal // Book-review Shinrin-yoku

So, there’s this book called Shinrin-yoku. I bought it, I read it, I finished it. All in one day!

A few weeks ago I read a book called Shinrin-yoku, written by Francesc Miralles and Héctor García. You might know these writers from the book Ikigai, which is a very popular book that came out in 2016. Since then, they have written three more books, one of them called Shinrin-yoku.

This book was amazing, so inspiring!

Shinrin-yoku literally means forest-bathing. Personally, I had never heard of the term forest-bathing, and because I am such a nature lover, I wanted to find out more!

The book starts out with a nice story written by the writers, where they talk about forest-bathing around mount Fuji to relieve all of their stress. They wrote this part in such a magical way. You just want nothing more than to be right there when you’re reading it. This beginning chapter made me want to read the entire book in one day, because it was just so intriguing and beautiful.

A Summary

The book is split up in eight parts. It starts out with an introduction and a definition of the term shinrin-yoku.

The second part is called The Lost Paradise, where they talk about the difference between the Paradise from the Bible and what we live in now. It’s about the stress we have living in the city and the health benefits of being in contact with nature.

The third part is called Back to the Garden of Eden. It is about specific places that are so intriguing they make you feel like you’re in paradise, like the Bodhi-tree, or the Tree of Life in Bahrain. It is also about legends and about the adventure of Thoreau, the man who lived in a forest for two years, two months and two days. It even mentions Wicca, which made me very excited, since I am a Wiccan!

The fourth part is about the science behind shinrin-yoku. There are a lot of studies in this chapter that are very interesting and might I add, very pleasant to read because of visual graphics.

The fifth part is about the philosophy behind shinrin-yoku. It’s about a lot of very interesting traditions of the Japanese culture. Shintoïsm, the traditional Japanese religion is the biggest subject in this part. It’s also about other beautiful Japanese terms, like Komorebi, which describes the sun shining through the leaves, and Wabi-sabi, which can be translated as ‘the beauty of imperfections’.

The sixth part is How to Apply Shinrin-yoku. This is about the five steps in shinrin-yoku. 1. Be in the moment.
2. Keep a route in mind, but make way for improvisation.
3. Breathe slowly and deeply.
4. Let your thoughts go away.
5. Feel like you are a part of an entirety.

The seventh part is called Shinrin-yoku at Home. It’s about how you can improve your health by bringing plants into your home. It also mentions aromatherapy! It gives you tips on what to get and how to use it. They also talk about how bird sounds help you to be concentrated and relaxed, which I found incredibly interesting.

The last part is just a short conclusion, which really helped clear up what I’ve read.

My Thoughts

I love the way the writers have written this book. It’s such a nice writing style, that makes it easy to read. It’s so well-structured, it’s satisfying!

Unpopular opinion:
I preferred this book over Ikigai and the other books the writers have written. The theme in this book is all positive and it’s not as heavy as the other books. Sometimes I felt terrible while reading the other books, because they made me think that I did everything wrong. Those books are kind of heavy, Ikigai is about what you should do in your life, what you’re passion is, and Ichigo-ichie is about how it’s now or never, you should be aware in every moment and not waste your time. Those books were also very inspiring, but sometimes they hit a little close to home. I didn’t feel like I was doing something wrong at all while reading this book. For a fact, it just felt like I was doing everything right, it inspired me to go for a walk more often and enjoy nature more!

I really enjoyed reading this book and I highly recommend it!

I hope you got a little bit inspired by reading this post as well, go out and enjoy nature, it is beautiful and definitely worth every second of your time! ♥

The video version of this blog post!


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