Experiencing Wilderness and Wild Places

People have an inherent thirst for wild places for a variety of reasons. They are instrumental in satisfying both basic and sophisticated psychological needs, help us with the process of maturation and connects us to the habitats of other living creatures and the elements of the Earth. This connectedness and interrelatedness assist us in understanding our place in the scheme of evolutionary processes and grounds us as participants in the wonders and purpose of creation. Wilderness is not simply a place to go to recreate but a paradigm in which we come to know our world and ourselves more deeply and comprehensively.

Indigenous peoples living intimately with their habitats, connected to the fauna, flora and natural elements, experienced a deep sense of place and their covenant with nature. Modern primal cultures tend to continue this way of living and seem to be content without many of the conveniences of our technological society.

Today, people around the globe are becoming more aware of environmental issues and the importance of cultivating a healthy human-nature relationship. It is also apparent that people are spending more time recreating and connecting with their habitat in a personal way that adds meaning and purpose to their lives. This development is resulting in increased personal actualization and maturity and a change in values and attitudes that consider the intrinsic value of the biosphere and its living and elemental inhabitants.

Reference:

Deep Ecology: Living as if Nature Mattered by Bill Devall and George Sessions, 1985 by Gibbs M. Smith, Inc. Why Wilderness in the Nuclear Age? pp. 109-129.

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