“Shutting off the alarm for the 5th time in the morning, I drag myself out of bed. The next couple of hours are chaotic with having to wake the kids, getting them ready and out of the house to school. My partner has her roles to play in the morning drill, and by the time, we catch the train to work, we are ready to bed. It’s a whole day spent in corporate warfare, time spent in negotiating, wrangling, maneuvering the treacherous landscape, moving forward while staying safe.
The few hours in the evening is hectic, getting kids to and from their various activities, ensuring they eat their meals and an hour of family time, I find myself snoozing in the middle of the TV show. The sun rises and the routine plays itself, I’m on autopilot mode. It got to a point where it dawned on me, that there was no time for me to compose myself, pamper myself, reset and connect with myself.
I came across the Wellness weekend at Nirvana Spiritual Retreat and was pleasantly surprised at what it had to offer. The program offered:
Nirvana spiritual retreat is in the World heritage Barrington National Forest and is the largest privately-owned rain forest retreat in this part of the world. We loved the pristine fragrant air, the bubbling water from the creeks, waking up the sound of the birds and bush, made the location an ideal one for anyone to RESET. The tired aching body relished the food and the massages, creating a new sense of energy. You can also go for their Yoga Walk or relax in their exquisite cabins.
I could go on and on…In short, we loved everything about the program, it provided the nourishment for my Mind, Body, and Soul and I’m coming back to Reset myself again in one of the biggest Healing Retreat.”
– Alex Jonas
One of the raging topics that have been going around is the fire in the Amazon forest. There are instances of so many fires in Brazil this year- about 76% more than the last year, the count going up to 72,000 incidents. The intensity of the fire is such that the skies of Sao Paulo have turned black due to the smoke rising from the fire which is 2,700 km away. Online platforms are buzzing with some misleading photos and facts. Let us try to clear some of the misinformation in our blog.
While some fires are expected in the dry season of Brazil in Amazon jungle, many of them are believed to have been started deliberately. President Bolsonaro is not transparent and has still not condemned deforestation. Moreover, he openly supports clearing the Amazon for agriculture and mining. The smaller groups of people are also responsible for starting the fires than the big corporations. More than 20 percent of the Amazon rainforest is already gone, and much more is severely threatened as the destruction continues.
It was also stated that, so far this year 228 megatonnes of carbon dioxide has been released into the atmosphere which is highest since 2010. The forest is burning since July but the trend on social media started recently because of #PrayforAmazonas and #PrayforAmazonia hashtag. Why? The first real sign was reported when smoke from the Amazon fire hit Sao Paulo causing a daytime blackout on 19th August. From that day the hashtag became the trending topic all over the social media handles.
The size of a football pitch is lost every minute due to fire in the Amazon forest.
Many people quoted in their social media handles that Amazon produces 20% of the world’s oxygen. But academics say that this is a very big misconception. The figure is less than 10%. The majority proportion of the world’s oxygen is produced by plankton. According to 2018 satellite data compiled by a deforestation monitoring program called Prodes, amazon deforestation has hit its highest rate in a decade.
Talking about the effect of these amazon fire on global weather, well there will be an immediate effect of fire on the climate of South America leading to less rainfall and more prolong dry seasons. The Paris climate deal which aims to limit average temperature rise to below two degrees will be more difficult to achieve. For most of human history, Amazon rainforest deforestation was primarily the product of subsistence farmers who cut down trees to produce crops for their families and local consumption.
In Continuation on our last blog where we plea to all Australians to support small businesses, Tourism Australia in response to Australian wildfire has launched a $20 million advertising campaign called “Holiday Here This Year”. This is done to stimulate tourism in fire devastated areas by encouraging Aussies to travel locally. People should commit to holidaying in these areas for this year. It can be driving up the coast, taking an interstate trip and spread the word everywhere that our country Australia is ready to welcome more travelers.
So how can we as tourists support our local community and help with Australian wildfire recovery? The best donation that we all can give to our community is booking a hotel in these fire devasted regions. Usually, these areas are all full at this time of the year and give a good profit through which they can survive the rest of the year. But these areas are all quiet right now, even those ones which are untouched by the Australian wildfire.
So we call all people to return to these areas, spend a great time there and give back to the local economy. Right now in Australia, more than 660,000 people or more than 5.2% of the total working population depends directly on tourism for their income and many more livelihood is affected indirectly.
This is the ideal time to visit these areas. If you are looking to cancel your holidays in an affected area, reschedule it for a later date rather than asking for a refund. The best way we can help people is to travel within Australia. There are many small businesses operating usually. They are the key to diverse Australian culture and we should rally together and explore Australia’s diverse destinations.
While many forests are closed due to fire you can still visit the beautiful Gloucester and Barrington Tops. With the river flowing again due to recent rains tourists can explore scenic views of the mountains.
Most of us watch the horror that engulfed a massive part of Australia. The australia bushfire season comes every year but none of us imagined this ruthless level that has destroyed communities and wildlife. The toll continued to rise and the devastation is unspeakable. Not only the people living there are impacted it has also destroyed small businesses and workforce. Today I would like to talk about myself. I work for a resort in Barrington Tops as a Digital Marketer. Everything was going great for me. I was able to generate the required output and my employer was quite satisfied with my performance until the australia bushfire season arrived. The australia bushfire took a heavy toll on small businesses like ours. People are left jobless. There was a severe water shortage with level 4 water restrictions in Gloucester. Small businesses operating in the area were left with no option but to shut down and move.
One day my employer came to me and said that he cannot afford me these few months as they are getting no bookings from the last few weeks. Even though I was living in Sydney I was left with no option but to quit. That day I realized there were people like me who are also impacted by the fire in those areas – be it transport guys, people working in warehouses, mates working in local stores and many others. We see social media posts of people praying for Australia. All their hearts go out to those impacted by the current fire crisis but time has come to give back to the community instead of just sitting down and praying for something good to happen. We are not asking for donations. There are many organizations doing the same but we all can indirectly contribute to the affected people living in the bush.
While our brave firefighters are on the front line controlling the fire, people living in cities should come forward and help the communities living in the bush. Instead of giving direct donations, buy products made locally. It can be food, dairy products or even clothes. Buy Australian made products and help small businesses impacted by these fires to bring them back on their feet. Take your family to outskirts, buy products from local stores, refill from the local gas station and stay in nearby resorts. These small steps will give a major boost to small businesses that are on the verge of collapsing. While the forecast for rain is expected to bring some relief from fire, the time has come for the people living in cities to give back to the community. Through this article, I want to put forward the message out on how people can help small businesses and support the local workforce. On behalf of all small businesses, we wish to ask for your support in this time of crisis.
Christmas is coming and we want to spend our hard-earned holidays and weekends on a trip that will take us on an inner journey. I happened to spend my last Christmas in Sydney at Nirvana Spiritual Retreat, on the doorstep of the World Heritage-listed rainforest of Barrington Tops National Park. Their cabins are nestled in bushland where I experienced the beautiful hymns of lyrebirds, wallabies, and wombats. The nearby Dilgry river is considered one of the cleanest in mainland Australia. I related to their idea of “Just Be” and captured my own essence. I went for a yoga walk that allows me to take an inner journey while walking a bush trail. I took their “Walk of Gratitude”. This Yogawalk is about being grateful for the bounty of life. The walk took me through the rainforests of the Barrington. It was an enriching experience. Gratitude is an immensely powerful force that we can use to expand our happiness, create loving relationships, and even improve our health. There were signposted walks that were designed to encourage connection and reflection. This walk engaged my mind and body and increased mindfulness and inner peace. I pen down all my thoughts in “passport” which they provided me. The nirvana passport allowed me to capture my experiences which later became the workbook of my life when I returned to my real world. I captured the essence of nirvana in the festival of Christmas in Sydney. That time is coming again. The time to bring hope, transformation, and fulfillment into the advent of our lives because our life is a constant advent season. We are waiting to become, to discover, to complete and to fulfill. Christmas is all about giving, forgiving and sharing with each other. I shared my experience of staying in Nirvana and what I believe can benefit others too. This year too I am visiting Nirvana Spiritual Retreat to relive that magic and get inspired to not “Just do” but to “Just Be”.