it's amazing how much information the bare foot has to offer. when stuck in a shoe each step feels pretty much like the one before it. the variety of sensations i get when barefoot keep things interesting---it keeps me aware, keeps me focused. going from grass to gravel to leaf litter generates a lot of signals flowing from the feet to the brain and back and it's hard not to be fully engaged. there is a sort of mindfulness that automatically develops from the awareness of the sensations coming from the feet. not only have i become more aware of what my feet are sensing but i'm more aware and more careful of where i'm putting my feet. when wearing shoes i've noticed a tendency to walk around somewhat carelessly because my feet are protected and because i can't really feel where i'm stepping. i think that the physical carelessness that comes with wearing shoes breeds carelessness in other areas of how i function---wearing shoes changes how i think about things and i become less sensitive in general. it's an odd shift but very definite and not one that i like much.
as a gardener it's good to know about things like soil moisture, compaction, texture and temperature---when i'm barefoot i'm constantly in tune with what the soil is doing without having to consciously check---it's pretty neat.
and walking around with naked feet just feels good.
|found a goat head|