A trail through the National Park of the Casentine Forests amidst Nature and Spirituality
An inspiring passage through stories, legends, symbols and myths of trees and woods. The "Trail of the Sacred Forests" - articulated in seven legs - guides the reader along a deeply fascinating route, through spiritual places and the wonders of nature.
The park territory excels for its vastness and the magnificence of the forests with which it is covered; on the other hand, not surprisingly, it is also a stretch of territory which is rich with religious marks and presence, from the most well-known monastic settlements to the simplest and most humble popular signs of religiousness, such as chapels, icons, via crucis, etc.
These are places where many of history's saintly men (Romuald, Francis, Peter Damian) found the ideal environment for meditation, a personal desert in which to find oneself and discover one's own intimate spirituality. Modern man, too - more materialistic and disenchanted than medieval men - cannot but marvel at the splendour and sacredness of the forest, the authoritativeness of some of the trees, ultra-centennial patriarchs in front of which one can only experience dumb admiration.
It was in light of this that it was decided a trail should be created which would offer interested trekkers an alternative way to experience the protected area, visiting a few of the most significant places which represent the relationship between nature and spirituality in the park: from the Lake of Idols to the Abbey of St Benedict; from the Romiti dell'Acquacheta to La Verna; from the Abbey of Badia Prataglia to Camaldoli.
Along the trail, from Lago di Ponte di Tredozio to La Verna, one rarely encounters cars or houses - just the green cloak of the Casentine forests - and can escape the chaos of the city for a moment to listen to the infinitely more pleasant sound of nature, with her whispering, gurgling, snapping under foot or beating of rain on the crown of trees... music to the ears of modern travellers!
The Trail of the Sacred Forests is, therefore, an additional way to interpret the surroundings and an opportunity to explore new, more obscure aspects, which centre on the age-old relationship between man and nature, in places where these two elements have found profound harmony.
Editore: Giunti Editore
Collana: Giunti Progetti Educativi
Autori: Mario Vianelli e Sandro Bassi
Traduzione: Lucy Claire Smith