Sunday, December 19, 2010

Touch the earth

Leaving the glow of my computer, I step out into this cold December night, in search of the glow of an almost full moon. Looking to trade in the two dimensional experience of gazing at a screen, for the three dimensional experience of observing nature. But simply observing nature, staying removed from it and not being a part of it, is really not much different than how one would view a TV program. There is still a distance between you and what you are viewing, whether it be a video on your laptop or checking out the scenery as you walk along a trail at a forest preserve. They are both very much two dimensional in nature because you are removed from, rather than immersed in.

This fact was pointed out to me today as I was reading David Abram's "Becoming Nature". David talks about how we spend so much of our time in front of screens, we are missing out on the opportunity to experience the richness of nature. David also says that most of what we know and learn about the natural world is delivered to us in a two dimensional format- either via a program about nature or as we pass through a preserve looking at the scenery. For this reason, we are missing out of the depth of nature. To understand we are a part of nature and it is part of us.

Reading David's words confirms what I have been feeling for awhile. That something valuable is being lost as we drift further and further away from the ancient wisdom of the land that resides within us and around us. Technology, while valuable in its own right, can not replace the value that comes from knowing and understanding wildness. We need to get closer to nature in a more intimate way, a more experiential way, and not continue to distance ourselves from it.

Tonight as I stood outside in the dark under the moonlit night, I touched the bark of a tree and considered that we are all a part of one whole. I reside within the tree and it within me. I held my hand on the bark of the White Pine residing in my side yard for quite some time and I enjoyed the exchange, feeling closer to nature as a result. Touch, it soothes a crying babe, or those hurting and needing to be consoled. Becoming closer to nature through touch, going from a two dimensional to a more three dimensional experience, may be what we need to soothe our ailing earth as well.

1 comment:

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

Beautiful words, beautiful thoughts, beautiful touch. -- barbara