The Living Mountain by Nan Shepherd – Book Review from a Chi Running perspective


The intimidate observations of ice formations and snow draw me in to want to spend a whole day wandering amongst the ice and snow just looking and taking in what I see. As I mentioned above, it’s so easy to walk past nature’s beauty especially the smaller ‘every day’ things that hold such simple awe and beauty to the trained eye.

I wonder how Nan Shepherd became so well trained in looking and noticing? From a Chi Running perspective, mindfully making observations about your body and your surroundings is a key skill. Noticing and accepting without judgement becomes key. Of course most people would never enter the Cairngorms at all, let alone in the weather and times of year that Nan Shepherd did. Is this because they pass judgement on the mountains (they are too hard to climb), the weather (it’s too cold to go out), or themselves (I would never be able to do that?) In my humble opinion, people are missing out! A mindful attitude to nature can reveal, as shown in this book, beauty beyond our imagination, in the harshest and most (apparently) barren places. A mindful and non judgemental attitude to our own bodies can often surprise us with what is also reveals.

The Chi Walking book has various examples of walking types including the ‘chi-gathering’ walk and the ‘walking meditation.’ Who is up for a mindfulness and Chi Running or Chi Walking wild camping expedition to the Cairngorms? Now there’s a thought…




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