As part of living a lifestyle that is in sync with nature, it is important to observe nature and learn from it. This summer, I had the unique pleasure of staying in Ketchikan, Alaska, where nature is wild and free!

I’ve been watching eagles, eating berries, observing big orange jellyfish, learning about wild salmon and even had a visit from a few bears outside my apartment!

But one of the most interesting and perhaps surprising creatures I encountered in Alaskan nature were spit bugs!

I was walking around the town a few weeks ago when I noticed this weird foam on a plant:

spit bugs foam

Ketchikan is a tourist town – there are a few cruise ships that arrive every day. I was outraged and disgusted – what kind of person would carry around foam with them and spray it all over plants?!!!

But then I started to notice more foam and seeing it every day… It was super weird and gross and mysterious.

A few days later, I joined a locals nature tour of Ketchikan with a University professor. She pointed out different plants and explained what they were as we walked around a beautiful forest lake trail.

To my surprise, when we encountered this foam, she took it in her hands, wiped it away and showed us that there was a little green bug inside! The bug was creating this foam as it was eating!

“The foam serves a number of purposes. It hides the nymph from the view of predators and parasites, and it insulates against heat and cold, thus providing thermal control and also moisture control; without the foam, the insect would quickly dry up. The nymphs pierce plants and suck sap causing very little damage, much of the filtered fluids go into the production of the foam, which has an acrid taste, deterring predators.” ~ Wikipedia

The spit bugs made me think of Atman, your Divine Self, that you can go all your life not noticing behind all the spit of life – emotions, feelings, thoughts, etc. Meditation – becoming the observer of spit – is one powerful way to find that true Self hidden inside:

“Just half an inch behind those emotions exists the divinity of God.” ~ Vasant Lad. Strands of Eternity




August 8, 2018

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