Category Archives: Philosophy

Love of wisdom.

Nature shows the reality of life

Nature teaches the meaning of life.

Those who adventure into nature, if observant and open-minded, will learn the meaning of life.  Everything loves life, growth and procreation; which requires strategies to capture or conserve energy.  There is no ending or beginning, merely change and constant motion.  Things die so that another lives, and strife is the supreme agent of all motion and change, the first principle in nature.  These observations are evident everywhere everyday in nature to those willing to take time away from their busy lives to learn.

Below is a video taken of the dramatic events between a rabbit and a snake.  The snake needs to live, so it has preyed on three baby rabbits, killing two.  The mother discovering the tragic scene, attacks the snake, freeing the surviving baby rabbit.  The conflict continues as the snake flees, pursued in an epic duel with the mother rabbit.  These dramatic scenes happen everywhere everyday in nature, a lesson on the meaning of life.

In harmony with nature

The individual can synchronise their life with nature.

Late June and the cherry trees are still yet to have ripe fruit.  I recognise that the climate is awry because everything is out of alignment, such as the UK cherry trees.  Most people fail to notice any of the natural patterns of nature because they are so separated from it.

Late June and the cherry trees are still yet to have ripe fruit. I recognise that the climate is awry because everything is out of alignment, such as the UK cherry trees. Most people fail to notice any of the natural patterns of nature because they are so separated from it.

It rains.  The cat runs inside, jumps on my seat, the warm secure shared space with me.  The cat is fully in harmony with nature.  When the rain stops, the cat will be outside again.  I know tonight the frogs and snails will be out in numbers, thus I am careful where I tread.

Yesterday was the Summer Solstice in Britain, the longest day.  Today marks the beginning of the slide into darkness and cold of winter.  I begin to think of preparing for winter.  I also mark my days by the moon cycles, I cut the lawn every new and full moon.  The last new moon, I decided to miss the cutting of the grass, because the growth of the grass had slowed and the clover were in bloom visited by hundreds of bees.

I have stopped feeding the birds, putting all the feeding stations in storage.  The summer and autumn are a time of abundance, and the nesting season is over.  I will begin again to feed the birds 1st November, the day that marks the first day of winter.

I no longer bother setting the alarm clock, I naturally wake up before 6am.  I tend to retire to bed before midnight, and mark time by the position and setting of the sun.

This weekend I will be going to a wild food fair to learn about bushcraft, foraging and making stone tools.

Bit by bit I work to live in harmony with nature, a gradual process.

Share the space

The ability to share space with other living things creates harmony.

I often share my space with this cat.

I often share my space with this cat.

It rains outside.  A wet cat lands upon a chair, meowing to me.  I move to the edge of my seat, and pull the curtains back at the window.  I invite the waiting cat to sit with me.  As I type this post, there is a cat on my seat beside me, purring and looking out of the window upon her domain.  I am sharing the space.

The council of my town of Colchester is building hundreds of miles of cycle paths.  Near many of these cycle paths is a sign: “share the space.”  Pedestrian and cyclist now share these paths, mindful to respect the other in using this shared space.  Around Britain duck lanes now exist, a reminder to cyclists and pedestrians that they share the space with river birds beside the rivers and canals.

Sustainability is about acting in harmony with nature, which is possible if people share their space with other living things.

Challenges and choices in nature

Interactions with nature is a play of challenges and choices.

This squirrel presents me with the latest challenge in nature: burying food in my oak sapling pots.

This squirrel presents me with the latest challenge in nature: burying food in my oak sapling pots.

My good friend Paul of Learning for Dogs reblogs a post about my oak saplings;  whilst reading that post, I catch sight of the local squirrel outside the window heading for my oak saplings to bury its nuts in the pots.

The squirrel is the latest challenge from nature, one that raises fear in me that my oak saplings will suffer harm from the squirrel’s activities.  I have stopped feeding the wild animals, because food is now abundant in these warm days, the last of the food, including nuts, I offer to the wild animals so it is not wasted.  The squirrel is using the food offered to it, burying the food in my oak sapling pots.

My initial choice is to recycle the nuts into the food waste, but the landlord of the property prevents me as they need to clean out the food waste bin.  I make the choice to wait, do nothing, let things flow for the moment.

The cat sees me at the window and meows. Another challenge. An invite to come into the garden with her. Another choice.

Things prosper when cared for

The joy of caring for something.

These oak saplings prosper because the are cared for.

These oak saplings prosper because of care.

Today, I moved my eight oak saplings into the full sun, added a new layer of quality compost to their pots, and watered them.  In their second year of life these oak saplings prosper because of care.

Caring for something means one must pay attention to the small details.  For instance, I remove the caterpillars from the oak leaves, and the weeds that grow in the pots.  If I did not concentrate on the small details, the little problems could grow into larger problems, the caterpillars destroying the oak saplings, the weeds stealing their nutrients in the pots.

Also, the individual spends time on the thing cared about, establishing regular activities, such as in my case, watering the oak saplings every few days.  The individual looks for ways that the cared for thing might benefit, just as I moved my oak saplings into the full sun, added new compost to them, and infected them with a type of symbiotic fungus that aids oak sapling growth.

The thing cared for becomes special, for instance there are millions of oak trees in Britain, but only eight of those, my saplings, are special to me.  In such a caring relationship, both sides come to depend upon the other.  My oak saplings need my care and attention to survive, I need my oak saplings to feel good about myself when life is hard.

If the individual has nothing to care for, their life becomes empty and meaningless.  I love the book by Antoine De Saint-Exupery called The Little Prince, which explores ideas around friendship and caring for things.  In The Little Prince is the following beautiful quote:

“You are beautiful, but you are empty. One could not die for you. To be sure, an ordinary passerby would think that my rose looked just like you — the rose that belongs to me. But in herself alone she is more important than all the hundreds of you other roses: because it is she that I have watered; because it is she that I have put under the glass globe; because it is she that I have sheltered behind the screen; because it is for her that I have killed the caterpillars; because it is she that I have listened to, when she grumbled, or boasted, or even sometimes when she said nothing. Because she is my rose.”

Being of benefit to others

You attract others by offering a benefit to them.

Offer something of benefit, and others will come to you.

Offer something of benefit, and others will come to you.

The winter and nesting season moves into the abundant season of plenty, thus I can stop feeding the wild birds.  I distribute the last of the food to the wild birds, the remainder of the nuts for the local squirrel.  Dozens of squabbling birds descend upon the food, and it is quickly gone.  I frighten the squirrel, which already has its paws on the nuts.  My cat love bombs me, so I feed her too.

All these animals are around me for a reason, I benefit them.  It is a simple lesson, that if you offer something of benefit to others, they will come to you.

Giving animals a hand

Everyone can make an individual difference to animals.

Simple actions can make a difference for a wild animal.

Individuals have a positive impact on a few wild animals with simple actions.

Life often surprises with weird coincidence.  Even though I try to keep intervention in the lives of wildlife to a minimum, the beautiful little green beetle was trying to cross a busy path, its potential doom a crushing death under a human foot.

I watched as one pedestrian walked by oblivious of the beetle they nearly stood on; I decided to intervene.  I by chance had a Colchester Zoo leaflet which had the strap line “giving animals a hand!”  which I used to move the beetle to safety in the vegetation it was heading for.  I smiled at the interesting synchronicity of helping the beetle with a leaflet talking about helping animals.

The challenges of the world might be vast and impossible to overcome, but every individual can have a positive impact in their actions for a few wild animals.