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Awareness Magazine
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Reflexions on Earthing

By Robert Ross, CHZT



“I have been walking barefoot all summer, for two-tenths of a mile back and forth to work, a few times a day, and pretty much anywhere else where I can go barefoot. I also walk around a big grassy field. I love being barefoot. I love, love, love it, and I can’t believe what a difference it has made in how I feel! More alive, more toned, more articulation in my feet, more settled emotions, and greater overall well-being,” states Eileen McKusick a recent convert to Earthing, from Johnson, Vermont.

 — From the book Earthing, by Clinton Ober, Stephen T. Sinatra M.D., Martin Zucker


It is called Earthing or Grounding. In a nutshell, it’s connecting to the earth. Or perhaps, reconnecting to the earth would be a more appropriate description. The proponents of Earthing claim the simple act of connecting, by walking barefoot on grass, dirt, or shorelines can, and does, have benefits that are nothing short of miraculous.         

Connecting to the earth; feeling the pulse of the planet; ‘settled emotions, a greater overall well-being,’ what’s not to like? A one-month trial period for me was in order.

The earth’s crust is teeming with negatively-charged free electrons. According to noted physician Joseph Mercola M.D.: “When you ground to the electron-enriched earth, an improved balance of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system occurs.”  

And, according to some experts, one of the major advantages of Grounding or Earthing is the reduction of inflammation and pain. The negatively-charged electrons migrate up from the ground into the body to the positively-charged free radicals. They effectively cancel each other out, creating nature’s own anti-inflammatory.

My Earthing kit arrived, via UPS, from Earthing headquarters in Palm Springs, CA. Opening the box felt like Christmas. The kit included an Earthing bed sheet, a sheet crisscrossed with four-hundred yards of silver thread woven into it, and an Earthing pad, for use at a desk or when sitting, an electrical socket tester and a grounding tester. The grounding tester can test the sheet, pad or anything, to verify the presence of electrons from a grounding source. Also, in the box of goodies was an Earthing Ground Rod, to be placed in the ground with an attached wire, if one were not able to locate a grounding source. Finally, I received the book Earthing, a DVD on Earthing, titled: The Grounded, and a booklet titled Going Barefoot.   

Time to reconnect with Mother Earth!

Placing one’s bare feet on the ground? I think I can handle that. I started my thirty-day test program by walking around the house in bare feet whenever possible. Although one doesn’t get the benefits of Earthing while walking on carpets — the carpet blocks the electrons from the earth — it still achieved some positive results, like greater muscle and bone articulation. Carpet walking quickly evolved into walking at the beach a couple of times a week. Immediately, I noticed one positive result from my foray into Earthing; my feet were happy.

The foot keeps us upright and balanced, takes us places, likes comfy shoes, and loves foot massages. Information from the foot is transferred into ankles, knees, hips and spine, all the way up to the brain. Feet contain twenty-six bones, over a hundred ligaments, muscles and tendons, and more than a hundred thousand nerve endings.

And feet, like thoroughbred horses, like to get out and run, jump, and feel the soil beneath. My feet were no exception. Freed from those stuffy shoes, they now walked the shoreline, feeling the initial chill of the ocean water as it rolled over them, and then the loosening sand beneath as the water receded. They felt the minute, uneven nuances of the land, and temperature changes of the surface beneath. Bare feet, I was eight again, running like the wind across a damp lawn in the spring.

After a few days of walking on the beaches, I felt more emotionally settled and my sense of balance had improved. Those bones, ligaments, tendons and muscles were relearning what they were designed to do.

Feet liberated, it was time to figure out how to absorb some electrons via my new Earthing half-sheet. Our house built in the 1950’s rendered most of the outlets ungrounded, except the kitchen outlets — as a result of a recent upgrade. Options? Sleep outside on the ground or run a sixty-foot thick orange extension cord from the kitchen to the bedroom; wife not too happy, but I had to do what I had to do.

After testing to see if my sheet was grounded, this writer was ready to do some serious sleeping.

The first thing I noticed was, going to bed was a big event. There was an anticipation involved in this test. After all, I would be receiving some almost magical electrons from the earth while sleeping. After a few nights of using the sheet, I noticed that I went to sleep faster and felt an improvement in overall energy during the day.

Testimonials about the Earthing sheet are abundant. “I was slated for surgery and now that is not going to happen” declared Carol Snyder after using an earthing sheet. Carrie McDonald was delighted that her son, who had been diagnosed with ADHD, no longer needed to take his medication. And regarding sleep: eighty-five percent said they went to sleep more quickly. Ninety percent reported sleeping better throughout the night. And one-hundred percent reported feeling more rested when they woke up.         

The earth is a living electrically-charged body. Free negatively-charged electrons are on the surface, in search of a home. That ‘home’ is all living plants, trees, shrubs, creatures, and most importantly we human beings. Walking barefoot allows easy access to these electrons. In the last fifty years though, rubber and plastic-soled shoes, which don’t conduct electrons, have replaced leather soled-shoes, which are conductive for electrons. The result, some experts say, has led to a dramatic rise in inflammatory type diseases.

Clint Ober, founder and co-author of Earthing, is no stranger to adversity. In 1993, the then highly-successful electronics entrepreneur had experienced a near fatal disease. During the healing process, Clint looked at his wealth and possessions and said: “I don’t want any more of this life.”  He sold his business and went on a search for new meaning. Crisscrossing the country in an RV, Clint was determined, often asking for guidance from above. In 1998 the proverbial light bulb went off in his head. He was watching a parade and noticed that everyone, including himself was wearing thick rubber soles. He concluded that all of these people were insulated from the ground, the very ground that can and does nourish them. It was during this time period he discovered that when people had direct contact with the earth, with feet on the ground, or through conductive materials, their health was better; they slept better and experienced more energy. He dubbed his discovery Earthing.  He’s been on a mission ever since to research* and promote this concept.

My one-month trial period on Earthing was coming to an end. Reading the book, pamphlet, watching the DVD, and visiting various websites was a bit overwhelming. There were anecdotal testimonies, scientific studies, and information on atoms, electrons and free radicals to understand.

With my research and testing complete, there was a bottom line: the earth is a magnificent round sphere that nurtures life through food, water, and energy from its depth. And there are unseen forces that support all living things. But, as a consequence of our modern lifestyle with freeways, high-rise buildings, and rubber-soled shoes, that physical connection, that support from the earth, in many cases has been broken.

My thirty days was a wake-up call. I’ll be spending more time touching the ground, walking the shorelines, swimming in the oceans, and most of all: marveling at this planet’s often unseen gifts.

Khalil Gibran, author of The Prophet, expresses these sentiments best with his statement: “And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.”

*Earthing research can be found at www.hindawi.com/journals/jeph/291541 and at www.earthinginstitute.net

For those interested in learning more about Earthing products, visit: http://www.earthing.com

Robert Ross can be reached by e-mail at: SanDiegoRoss@Yahoo.com

Copyright 2015 by Robert Ross, all rights reserved