The Future of Nature

First of all, sorry that my posting has become more erratic. I’ve been pretty busy this summer and that won’t change once my semester picks up again, so expect that postings will be a little crazy for the foreseeable future.

It’s certainly not for lack of material that I’m not posting. Today, I watched this video by Nature Valley Canada and it made me a little discouraged. Please watch it before moving on to the rest of this post.

I have noticed this in my own kids, too. It seems that a whole generation of children is on the brink, standing with one foot in nature and one foot in technology. It’s true that they are not mutually exclusive, but that is certainly the usual scenario. We often use technology, making us busy and “always on”, over nature, which invites us to pause, even for a moment, to see and notice things differently. Technology, for all its benefits, has the habit of making us extremely busy (even though not always productive).

Thomas Moore, a brilliant author on spirituality, begins his book The Re-Enchantment of Everyday Life by talking about nature and I have to believe that’s intentional. He says, in the second paragraph of the first chapter, “All lessons in enchantment begin with nature…” We are living in an increasingly disenchanted world and and increasingly technological world and it discourages me.

Of course, I’m talking in generalities and I don’t believe for a second that it cannot or will not be reversed. There’s so much joy found in being outside. Running trails, for me anyway, has become an increasingly enchanted experience, one that feeds my soul and exercises my body. For others, it will be different. Regardless of the outlet, I hope everybody can find one. I am growing discontent with the technological default that our world seems to be taking, but I am hoping to use that discontent to motivate a real change.

Let us grow enchanted again. Let us find ways to take part in the natural world and all that we can learn from it. Let us remember a time when it was okay to go out and play instead of stare at a lifeless screen. Let us turn off and tune in to what the world really has to show us.

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3 thoughts on “The Future of Nature

  1. Powerful words and yes—there is something missing today when our kids are reluctant to venture outside to just be kids. I loved that my childhood included so much time outside. You highlighted a really important thing today — maybe we can make baby steps in the right direction.

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  2. I fear that we have a generation of kids that do not know how to have face to face conversations. Nature is so important. When kids are allowed to go outdoors and explore while playing, conversations are made. I hear from many folks, that sadly in many areas of the country they cannot allow their kids to go outdoors to play, due to violence in neighborhoods. We are blessed to have quiet and peace here in North Iowa. Great post!

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