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Natural Senses

"What we are looking for is what is doing the looking" -  St. Francis of Assisi

54 Natural Senses and Sensitivities

Guy Murchie spoke with Dr. Michael Cohen about the scientific methodology and research (Harvard Biological Laboratories) which identified over eighty different biological senses/sensitivities within our natural world.  Guy Murchie mentions these interwoven senses/sensitivities into 31 senses in his book The Seven Mysteries of Life.


Connecting with these senses offer us rejuvenating and restorative qualities, insights and sometimes the feeling of a little mystery and magic!
Please join Greensong Kinfolk for FREE seasonal self-guided experience exploring our sensory world and other ecopsychology practices to deepen ecological awareness.

Tip: First ensure you feel safe, seek permission, come with  respectful intention and see if you can notice any of these senses in nature, try to stay tuned in to sensing rather than thinking...

Excerpt from "Reconnecting With Nature," by Dr. Michael J. Cohen:


The Radiation Senses
1. Sense of light and sight, including polarized light.
2. Sense of seeing without eyes such as heliotropism or the sun sense of plants.
3. Sense of color.
4. Sense of moods and identities attached to colors.
5. Sense of awareness of one’s own visibility or invisibility and consequent camouflaging.
6. Sensitivity to radiation other than visible light including radio waves, X rays, etc.
7. Sense of Temperature and temperature change.
8. Sense of season including ability to insulate, hibernate and winter sleep.
9. Electromagnetic sense and polarity which includes the ability to generate current (as in the nervous system and brain waves) or other energies.


The Feeling Senses
10. Hearing including resonance, vibrations, sonar and ultrasonic frequencies.
11. Awareness of pressure, particularly underground, underwater, and to wind and air.
12. Sensitivity to gravity.
13. The sense of excretion for waste elimination and protection from enemies.
14. Feel, particularly touch on the skin.
15. Sense of weight, gravity and balance.
16. Space or proximity sense.
17. Coriolus sense or awareness of effects of the rotation of the Earth.
18. Sense of motion. Body movement sensations and sense of mobility.

The Chemical Senses
19. Smell with and beyond the nose.
20. Taste with and beyond the tongue.
21. Appetite or hunger for food, water and air.
22. Hunting, killing or food obtaining urges.
23. Humidity sense including thirst, evaporation control and the acumen to find water or evade a flood.
24. Hormonal sense, as to pheromones and other chemical stimuli.

The Mental Senses
25. Pain, external and internal.
26. Mental or spiritual distress.
27. Sense of fear, dread of injury, death or attack.
(25-27 are attractions to seek additional natural attractions in order to support and strengthen well-being)

28. Procreative urges including sex awareness, courting, love, mating, paternity and raising young.
29. Sense of play, sport, humor, pleasure and laughter.
30. Sense of physical place, navigation senses including detailed awareness of land and seascapes, of the positions of the sun, moon and stars.
31. Sense of time.
32. Sense of electromagnetic fields.
33. Sense of weather changes.
34. Sense of emotional place, of community, belonging, support, trust and thankfulness.
35. Sense of self including friendship, companionship, and power.
36. Domineering and territorial sense.
37. Colonizing sense including compassion and receptive awareness of one’s fellow creatures, sometimes to the degree of being absorbed into a super organism.
38. Horticultural sense and the ability to cultivate crops, as is done by ants that grow fungus, by fungus who farm algae, or birds that leave food to attract their prey.
39. Language and articulation sense, used to express feelings and convey information in every medium from the bees’ dance to human literature.
40. Sense of humility, appreciation, and ethics.
41. Senses of form and design.
42. Sense of reason, including memory and the capacity for logic and science.
43. Sense of mind and consciousness.
44. Intuition or subconscious deduction.
45. Aesthetic sense, including creativity and appreciation of beauty, music, literature, form, design and drama.
46. Psychic capacity such as foreknowledge, clairvoyance, clairaudience, psychokinesis, astral projection and possibly certain animal instincts and plant sensitivities.
47. Sense of biological and astral time, awareness of past, present and future events.
48. The capacity to hypnotize other creatures.
49. Relaxation and sleep including dreaming, meditation, and brain wave awareness.
50. Sense of pupation including cocoon building and metamorphosis.
51. Sense of excessive stress and capitulation.
52. Sense of survival by joining a more established organism.
53. Spiritual sense, including conscience, capacity for sublime love, ecstasy, a sense of sin, profound sorrow and sacrifice.

54. Sense of Unity, of natural attraction as the singular mother essence and source of all our other senses.

Connecting people to self, community, and our natural world through permaculture and ecopsychology

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