Scandinavian Philosophy That Recommends Communicating with Nature: What Is Friluftsliv?

Friluftsliv philosophy is considered as a trend that emerged from Scandinavia and spread to the globe. In this article, we will take a look into Friluftsliv, an old Nordic lifestyle.

Nature is a temple in which living pillars

Sometimes give voice to confused words;

Man passes there through forests of symbols

Which look at him with understanding eyes...

Charles Baudelaire

You probably know that Scandinavian countries rank at the top of annual “Happiest Countries of the World” lists. Well, do you think the only reason for this high ranking is their high welfare levels?

We will answer this question, “No, that is not the only reason”. Scandinavian culture is the centre of a life intertwined with nature. This philosophy about connecting with nature is the reason why individuals in Scandinavian lifestyle are happy, peaceful and creative.

Studies show that spending time outside and living outdoors can ensure a strong regeneration for our mental and spiritual health. Scandinavians, who have realized the healing and regenerative power of nature, now shine with the Friluftsliv philosophy that have its origins in Norway, after Scandinavian lifestyle approaches like Hygge and Lagom.

In this article, we will talk about the Norwegian philosophy of living outdoors: Friluftsliv. If you are ready, let’s head to the peaceful nature of Scandinavia.

What does Friluftsliv mean?

The concept of Friluftsliv first emerged in 1859 with På Vidderne (On the Heights) poem by world-famous playwriter and poet Henrik Ibsen. Friluftsliv, which Ibsen addressed to define quietness, calmness and mind-clearing of fresh air, means “free air life” in English language.

Interacting with nature, being alone with nature, appreciating natural beauties and being close to nature are at the basis of this philosophy of outdoor life.

Moreover, there are numerous small cottages constructed on mountain hills, riversides and in the middle of green fields as the reflection of this philosophy in the architecture on Scandinavian land. People use these cottages whenever they want to spend time alone in nature.

Outdoor Life: A Nordic Tradition

Outdoor life is a Nordic tradition that dates back to ancient times. In their cultures, nature activities and occupations like trekking, camping, mushroom hunting and beekeeping continue to be a part of their lives since old times.

Sweden, a country with an approximately 10 million population, has 25 NGOs based on Friluftsliv philosophy. These 25 organizations have a total of 1.7 million members.

Well, how can you project this calming culture that makes you happy into your living spaces?

- Create Green Areas at Your Home

You can reflect the attractiveness of nature in your home, albeit at small-scale, and create peaceful corners. In order to do that, you can place plants on suitable corners in your living space. Until now you might not have taken care of any plants at home, but it is not important; don’t be afraid of trying.

Of course, taking care of a plant means checking it every day and observing its light and water amount. If you think you will struggle at the beginning, you might choose from succulent types that need less water.

- Prepare a Meditation Corner

Living in crowded and noisy metropoles with heavy traffic jam unavoidably fills us with negative energy. For this reason, we need more relaxing spaces where we can distance ourselves from this stress and purify ourselves.

If you create special corners at your home for mediation, you will act according to the Friluftsliv philosophy. In the Friluftsliv philosophy, relaxing areas where you will be alone with yourself are extremely important.

- Choose Comfort in Decoration

You can create enjoyable and relaxing seating corners suitable for outdoors in order to soothe your soul in your balcony, terrace, porch or garden. You can choose soft cushions or pillows in a setting where you will feel the open air and you can take your comfort zone to a higher level with portable stands that you can easily carry inside on rainy days.

23.12.2019 - Culture and Art
Philosophy