Sunday, October 7, 2018

“The repeated refrains of nature”

I came across this passage by chance. From Rachel Carson’s The Sense of Wonder (1965):

Those who dwell, as scientists or laymen, among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life. Whatever the vexations or concerns of their personal lives, their thoughts can find paths that lead to inner contentment and to renewed excitement in living. Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. There is symbolic as well as actual beauty in the migration of the birds, the ebb and flow of the tides, the folded bud ready for the spring. There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature — the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after the winter.
“Never alone or weary of life”: someone with, say, severe depression might want to disagree. But nature as a source of renewal? I’m with Carson. Making a garden or taking the same walk every day are two ways to develop a greater awareness of “the repeated refrains of nature.”

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