« If you want to go far, go together » says the African proverb.
Marching together can help you to be more aware, more thoughtful, and to rebuild yourself. Marching together produces dialogue, exchange, pragmatism, reinforcement, the ability to see oneself in others, to leave the virtual world behind and view things in a different way…
There are many famous walks, from that to Compostela, the Via Francigena, and the Assisi peace march. They are gradually being rediscovered and the villages along the routes are being revitalised by the « marchers ».
Walks organised by local committees with more specific objectives are less known and more popular: they are organised for health reasons, to protect trees, community life… It would be impossible to cite all of them, however the walk of the Fitoforo (in English: the Tree Brothers’ Walk) which takes place in Rome each year, is worthy of note. A ‘fitoforo’ is a brother to trees, a symbol of renewed harmony between man and the forest, between humanity and Mother Earth. Marchers walk around with saplings sticking out of their rucksacks as a sign of their importance. Launched in Rome in 2010, the walk has been replicated elsewhere. Since 2013, the march of the ‘fitofori’ has been sponsored by the city of Rome itself and an increasing number of associations and individuals have joined the volunteers who started it.
On 27th November 2016 the fifth Marcia Nazionale degli Alberi ( National Tree March’) took place. This time the aim is to preserve the Centocelle Archaeological Park: the fitofori were a forest that was marching to support the archaeological area that is suffering from extreme neglect.
There have also been marches dedicated to the soil. They are usually organised by nature lovers to raise awareness of the earth, greenery, animals and insects. Some of them are more specific like the ones organised by soil experts to highlight the composition, structure, texture, colour and life of the soil. If any of our readers has taken part in one of these soil walks and thought it was well organised, please let us know.
In any case, everyone is encouraged to leave their houses and discover the soil together by touching, observing and getting to know it. We do not need ‘experts’ to understand how important it is.