In our high-stress, modern society, there’s luckily no shortage of relaxation aids: bedtime story audio apps, phone-free offices, or ASMR, hypnotic YouTube videos of people whispering or crinkling wrapping paper into a microphone to help people drift to sleep.
But in Slovenia, there’s one relaxation technique that may actually shock some people, especially entomophobes: lying down in a room filled with cages of thousands of buzzing bees.
The country has had a long appreciation for the winged honey-makers: apiaries, where beehives are kept, blanket the nation, including its schoolyards. And World Bee Day falls on 20 May, which coincides with the birthday of Anton Janša, a Slovenian beekeeper who was a global pioneer in the field of apiculture back in the 18th Century.
Today, bee therapy acts as salve to day-to-day stressors for many in Slovenia, including people in high-pressure jobs like firefighting. Watch the video above to see how Slovenia uses these beloved bugs to boost mental health – stingers and all.
This video originally appeared in BBC Reel’s Spiritual Awakening, a series documenting ancient techniques the modern world is using to enlighten their lives.