New Zealand is the most beautiful place on the planet! A veritable heaven on earth. For years my Māori people have seen Mother Earth as something to be revered and respected. It is best summed up with the whakatauki, ‘Whatungarongaro te tangata, toitū te whenua’ or ‘As man disappears from sight, the land remains’. We believe that from earth we come and to the earth we return, so the land will always remain once we have passed on. She is ‘tapu’ or sacred!

It’s with that insight, that a day like Earth Day represents so many things, not only to me as a Māori man, but also as a Warrior of Light! If this is the earth we live on and from, why don’t we treat her with the utmost love and respect?

Since the first Earth Day in 1970, awareness has grown exponentially around curbing pollution world wide. How do we take better care of our planet? Protecting our resources and not pillaging the earth for wealth or greed, is a great start. In 2012, 1 billion new trees were planted internationally as part of Earth Day, thus creating new homes for wildlife plus decreasing carbon pollution in the environment. That’s on a huge scale!

We can all make a difference on a personal level too. Our Yoga studio for example, recycles. We sell products in our boutique that are created from recycled or organic material. I walk or foot-scooter everywhere to lower my carbon footprint. At home we reduce our plastic intake and utilise re-useable food wrapping. They may not seem like big things, but if we all contributed in some way, then our Earth wouldn’t respond so violently to our treatment with freak storms, floods, earthquakes and the like! If she is our Mother, then shouldn’t we treat her better?

Taking care of our planet is really just living mindfully. To me, it’s Yoga off the mat.

I’ve recently been asked to be a Conscious Collaborator for WE-AR clothing! I’m hyped that I not only get to wear my old school buddy, Jyoti Morningstar’s clothing, but I get to contribute to our environment by wearing beautiful ethically made organic garments. I’m grateful that I get to represent a brand that cares. As the WE-AR ethos for the Planet says - ‘Mindfully made in Harmony, because we care’. Kia ora!

This Earth Day, do something mindful for the planet! I’ll be walking to work, recycling everything I can, picking up rubbish on our beaches, teaching with the lights off, whilst wearing (with pride!) my WE-AR garments. Celebrate this year’s Earth Day by giving our environment, the planet, Mother Earth - the tender love and care she deserves. Mauri Tū, Mauri Ora!

Jase Te Patu – Co-owner Power Living Aotearoa studios/ Conscious Collaborator for WE-AR

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