Nature and the Lack of Connection

Most of the quotes I post to this website will describe nature as a place of respite, adventure, and just plain old-fashioned goodness. The wild world is a place that I love. It makes me feel at home, even more so than the domesticated wild we commonly call ‘country’ (as in farm-country).

That said, the following quotes deviate a bit from this trend because I believe they are equally important. While I often feel a spiritual connection to nature (in general), there is often a lack of respect, or simple misunderstanding, of the reality that is the wild.

Preserving and protecting nature is important, but respecting the wild, on it’s own terms, is imperative. You cannot have a spiritual connection to nature and refuse to protect it’s existence. Neither can you effectively protect the natural world without respecting, and providing space, for the wild things to be…well…wild.

Anyhow, enough of my opinion. If you get the chance to read the full article, I strongly encourage you to do so. But, for now, here are the quotes:


But above all else, the actual experience of being in nature seems to affirm its essential holiness. The natural world feels like a spiritual respite: a literal sanctum, where we are safe to reconnect to what is larger than ourselves.

Compared to the cosmic rhythms of mountain, sea, and sky, it is ordinary daily life—driving at rush hour, punching security codes, navigating a shape-shifting digital culture—that seems hostile. Yet there is a serious problem with our idea of sacred nature, and that is that the idol is a false one. If we experience the natural world as a place of succor and comfort, it is in large part because we have made it so.

We have created an imaginary connection with nature because we lack a tangible one, and we carry that connection in spirit because we no longer follow it in body. The sense of the divine that many feel in wild places is less a bond with nature than another symptom of the absence of that bond.

the way you see the world determines much about the world you are willing to live in, and the spiritual lens has failed us as a tool for seeing clearly.

It hasn’t been my experience that full-force nature directs the mind toward thoughts of positive vibrations or divine master plans. Nature itself is enough, its stories written in blood and shit and electrons and birdsong, and in this we may ultimately find all the sacredness we seem to need.

False Idyll,” by J.B. MacKinnon – An entry in The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2013, Edited by Siddhartha Mukherjee

Leave a Reply