A few months back, I went hiking on trails around Clingman’s Dome in Tennessee. It’s the 3rd highest area on the east coast. If you ever get the opportunity to visit the Great Smoky Mountains, I’m telling you right now; you should go!

It’s not about the food or the shopping. It’s not even about the multitude of moonshine tasting.

It’s about the stillness that is to be found there in the crisp, clean mountain air. Air so fresh and gorgeous that no pricey aromatherapy oils could even come close to imitating.

In the middle of all that beautiful balsam is priceless silence.

There are no sounds of cars. No chatter of people. Nothing but silence.


It’s in that silence and pure air that I took greater notice of the trees around me.

Those intense, tall trees reach up to the sky with roots that grow deep in the rich unpolluted soil.

My feet were implanted on the ground beside these fantastic trees. In our stillness, each of us stood in silent watch of the madness reigning on everyday life below.

Somehow, my seemingly ever-present fear of being in a place unknown to me, along with my fear of heights, had dissolved into the crisp air. I felt a sense of peace and connection to the world around me.

I’ve read that trees communicate underground through their roots.

Some trees are part of an immense system connected by their underground roots.

When a tree falls ill, it signals to the other trees for help, which arrives.

We don’t see that connection, but it’s there.

People are very similar, maintaining a connection that all too often goes unnoticed. When one of us falls ill, few physically run to the aid of that person, but most will, in whatever language they use, pray for that person.

Did you ever wonder why?

Why would someone in California pray for the safety of someone in New York?

Because like trees, we are all connected with unseen roots that run more deeply than we can ever fathom.

When one of us rages, we all feel that rage. We all are affected.

This connection creates a need to journey towards mental, physical, and spiritual health, so collectively, we can get better – feel better – be better.

Without fear, I sat on the ledge securely fastened to the earth by the trees around me and looked out over the mountains covered in trees. Beautiful, fabulous, trees.

Eventually, I had to leave the pure-aired silence, but I haven’t left the awareness of the deep-rooted connection I have to that spot on the rock on a trail off of Clingman’s Dome, and the connection I have to the world around me. The connection we all have.