I don’t care what you call it, but there is something we all think of as God, Mother Nature, or some kind of Higher Power.

For me a born catholic, Jesus is God but I revere Him for the wonderful creatures on this planet. I live at the end of a dead end road in Vermont and witness God’s creations every day. I count myself as one of the luckiest on this earth. Just this afternoon I saw a fox come up onto my porch and get birdseed out of my feeder. Just a young healthy fox. But so beautiful.  A few days ago my wife and I were in the kitchen and we saw a turkey vulture  standing twenty feet away. It was walking along the bank and his feet were huge.  After a while he took flight and what a graceful flyer!

Deer, raccoons, possums, foxes, and lots of birds like turkeys, indigo buntings, cardinals, blue jays, and many others all come here and I hope feel safe. It is spiritual for me.  God made some beautiful animals and some of them  grace me with their presence.

I feel closer to God when I’m out in my woods cutting firewood  than I do in a church.

Turkey Vulture flying in Miami, Florida, USA.
Turkey Vulture flying in Miami, Florida, USA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Turkey Vulture in Miami, Florida, USA.
Turkey Vulture in Miami, Florida, USA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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VegasBabe
Member

I feel ya Nirek!

Beatlex
Member
Beatlex

Do I believe in an all powerful being watching over every move we make? No,My higher power is the wonder of the Universe,and all it contains.Like the life we have here on Earth.And mans(and women’s) ability to appreciate it all.

Kalima
Admin

Thank you for this wonderful post, Nirek, it’s a subject close to my heart that I can relate to every day. A beautiful sunrise and sunset can make me cry. Forests and mountains feel like home. Animals inspire me with their innocence, and watching things grow fills me with awe.

I live in a busy city but never really notice the light blocking from tall buildings. Instead I focus on the trees that three weeks ago had just a few leaves, and now stand majestic in the place they have owned for decades.

Although we don’t see wild animals here, I do have the pleasure of feeding countless strays and an ever increasing number of sparrows who are no longer afraid of me, and fly to the ground together like a velvet, brown blanket when I put out their food. It starts off my morning so perfectly.

My favourite time of the day is Dawn and Twilight, and don’t turn on the lights until it actually gets dark. Whoever designed this beautiful place called Earth, made it so breathtakingly beautiful that sometimes, for a few seconds or even minutes, it can take away the pain we all experience during our lives. They knew what they were doing and I thank them every day.

Here are two poems by William Wordsworth who says it so much better than I ever could.

—-

William Wordsworth

Calm is all nature as a resting wheel.
The kine are couched upon the dewy grass;
The horse alone, seen dimly as I pass,
Is cropping audibly his later meal:
Dark is the ground; a slumber seems to steal
O’er vale, and mountain, and the starless sky.
Now, in this blank of things, a harmony,
Home-felt, and home-created, comes to heal
That grief for which the senses still supply
Fresh food; for only then, when memory
Is hushed, am I at rest. My Friends! restrain
Those busy cares that would allay my pain;
Oh! leave me to myself, nor let me feel
The officious touch that makes me droop again.

—-

I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud
BY WILLIAM WORDSWORTH

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

Thanks again, Nirek. Peace.

KillgoreTrout
Member

Lovely words indeed, and quite true, but, let us not forget that when Mama Nature gets riled, holy Jeebus, look out! That is also a part of Nature that leaves me awestruck, even though I could perish in an instant in the midst of such “rath.”

It is poetry indeed to ascribe human qualities to such an awesome force.

Kalima
Admin

I know KT, we had the disasters in 2011 to prove the “angry earth” theory, and experience her wrath almost every week. So as much as I love her, I respect her power even more.

I posted this on MB over a week ago, and found it fascinating.

Scientists find evidence of ‘oceans’ at Earth’s centre

In a discovery that could explain why water covers so much of our planet’s surface, scientists find evidence of vast underground “oceans” trapped hundreds of miles beneath the Earth’s surface

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/10900228/Scientists-find-evidence-of-oceans-at-Earths-centre.html

KillgoreTrout
Member

I’m pretty sure you have seen the old movie, “Journey to the Center of the Earth,” with James Mason. They encountered an ocean at the center of the Earth. This is what I thought of when I first read of this discovery.

Jules Verne had some amazing flights of fancy, many of them turning out to become reality.

Kalima
Admin

Yes I did see that film and thought it was a wonderful fantasy. Turns out it was true. How about that? 😀

KillgoreTrout
Member

Kalima, I was actually thinking of what Japan went through even as I wrote what I did. I completely agree. Such power is mind boggling, even when it takes human life, or especially when it takes human life.

I sometimes see it as a reminder to all those who convince themselves that mankind has “conquered,” Nature!

I was in Hurricane Irene, or should I say her tail end. That was incredibly scary, but at the same time, just awe inspiring.

It’s like when we truly look at the universe we live in (greatly buffered by location and time), and we see the immensity of it all, we truly are just grains of sand.

I wouldn’t exactly call the “angry Earth,” a theory. Poetic expression, but surely no theory.

Kalima
Admin

I agree KT, we can never underestimate her or be foolish enough to say we have conquered her. All we have done is to afford ourselves better protection. Here it’s building stronger foundations that will withstand a direct 7.0 earthquake. Or building stronger and higher tsunami protection walls, but no one really knows until it actually happens, and the news that an expected huge earthquake will devastate the Kanto region, which is also Tokyo, is enough to make the heart pump faster each time we shake.

The angry earth is what I’ve called her since I first came to Tokyo and experienced my first ever earthquake while having a bath. It’s a wonder I’m still around to talk about it because after it was over and my heart stopped pounding, I was thinking of packing my suitcase to move back to sanity. Then I remembered I was married.

Kalima
Admin

You certainly have seen things, and I too will stay in this shaky land for the sheer beauty of autumn here, the cherry blossom season, the speed at which things grow, and of course to take care of my furry and feathered friends, even if the radiation from Daiichi is in the groundwater and has been discovered here in Tokyo.

This is my home now for better or worse, there is no other place to return to anymore, so I will make the best of it, and hope we survive whatever comes our way.

Stay safe and happy.

KillgoreTrout
Member

Ah, the heart makes us brave. And that is wonderful.

I lived in Southern California in the late 80s and have experienced three earthquakes. They were not huge earthquakes, in the high 5.0s and low 6.0s on the Richter scale, but they definitely give you a brand new perspective on just how solid we think our ground is.

I grew up and now live in the midwest America. Tornado country for sure. I’ve been very fortunate through the years, never to be hurt or lose loved ones in these extreme Natural events. But wow. Just the realization of such immense power is a very humbling thing.

I also lived in Washington State for a year. I could see Mt. St. Helens from my bedroom window, or what was left of it.

Three thousand feet of dirt, rock and solid stone were blown off the top of that mountain in a matter of minutes.

But I’ll take all the flowers and budding trees and passive animals I can get. It’s all one thing. One wondrous, scary, beautiful thing.

cyndibru
Member
cyndibru

Beautiful post, Nirek. I’ll share my favorite poem about nature.

GOD’S GRANDEUR
by Gerard Manley Hopkins

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.

It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;

It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil

Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?

Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;

And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;

And wears man’s smudge and shares man’s smell: the soil

Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.

And for all this, nature is never spent;

There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;

And though the last lights off the black West went

Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs —

Because the Holy Ghost over the bent

World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

A Jesuit Priest no less!

kesmarn
Admin

A great favorite of Thomas Merton’s.

monicaangela
Member

THE PEACE OF WILD THINGS

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Wendell Berry

Yes, there is peace in all that you see in your neck of the woods Nirek, the peace that comes from the spirit and from the soul, the soul that binds you to those things you see, we and all that surrounds us are one.

KillgoreTrout
Member

Nice post Nirek. As you know, I just spent the last three months on Cape Cod, helping my elderly mother.

I arrived in early March when all the trees were bare, flowers had not yet popped up anywhere, and barely an animal was seen. We did get about five inches of snow one night and when I awoke the next morning, the world around me was so beautiful it would not be easy to describe. just awesome to see. Picture post card pretty.

As the weeks went on, flowers began to pop up, the trees were starting to bud and birds and squirrels came around more and more. My mom has a really nice yard, surrounding her little home. There are bushes of several types, trees and flowers, both planted and wild. By the end of April, her little neighborhood in the woods was stunning in it’s natural beauty.

I had seen this many times throughout the years, and even would remark now and then, how nice everything was. Ah, but this year, I really SAW just how beautiful everything there is. I guess it’s because I’m growing older, but my appreciation for it all was stronger than ever.

Yes, Nature is a true wonder. Nature is everything, including ourselves.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

I think that you and I are a bit pantheistic in all of this….I operate from a position as a Christian Humanist….for you it is more eclectic but still inspirational I think.

We look at nature and say…..”Ah! And there it is.”

KillgoreTrout
Member

Hey Murph. Actually, I’m an atheist, technically speaking. I’m a Taoist, to a certain degree. There are no supreme beings in Taoism, but it is very spiritual and Nature is the focal point in all of it.

No rules, no scripture, no dogma really, just what I like to call ancient Chinese wisdom. It’s a collection of 81 ideograms that serve as a guide to living, with Nature as the supreme example.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

Pantheism is the belief that the universe (or nature as the totality of everything) is identical with divinity, or, alternately, that everything composes an all-encompassing, immanent God (the Force?).

Pantheists thus do not believe in a distinct personal or anthropomorphic god. Many Eastern religions/life philosophies are considered to be pantheistically inclined.

That was my hook to your Taoism.

KillgoreTrout
Member

Absolutely correct Murph. I mistook pantheism, for polytheism. Hence my statement about “technically,” being an atheist.

I’ve always had difficulty believing in any sort of anthropomorphic deity.

Yes, I think we’re pretty much on the same page “metaphysically.”

Funny you mention the “Force.” I think George Lucas knew a good deal about the Tao Te Ching. Of course, using artistic license, he made it a bit fantastical for the big screen. When I really think about it, how can the real thing possibly be any more fantastical?

kesmarn
Admin

I just have to add too, Nirek, that your post was like a breath of fresh air. And it’s nice to have a cozy place here in the Speakers Corner to get away from stressful current events and complex politics, and just enjoy God’s creation!

Thanks for posting. 😀

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

I am liking this idea too.

It is a diffent kind of post is it not?

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

I very much agree. I hope we see a lot more of this kind of reflection. Things political fascinate me but they also grind me down. This arrived at just the right time after a morning of bad SCOTUS news.

KillgoreTrout
Member

Murph, check out Poems, Aphorisms and Injustices in the side bar.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

I found it and left a comment for you at the story. Well done.

KillgoreTrout
Member

Thanks, my friend.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

What sidebar…point me in the proper direction.

Kalima
Admin

Next to the Recent Comments where it’s always been, Murph.

kesmarn
Admin

Nirek, a good friend just sent me a pic of something she saw on her 12 acres in NY State yesterday:

[img]https://mail.google.com/mail/ca/u/0/?ui=2&ik=d086338886&view=fimg&th=146d5c6d9adef6e0&attid=0.1&disp=inline&realattid=f_hwve27c10&safe=1&attbid=ANGjdJ9X1PT6EEb9d-PsrOJWwGBpiQmu_tHevwv4lFYe1xJXAvDqBCffiqAqp67U9KbnQpf2-q4ux9rh9Q3b-a-s4_R2p9arz-d5FdW36wrjftq1bN11schtdsjB9Tw&ats=1403789735346&rm=146d5c6d9adef6e0&zw&sz=w1336-h507[/img]

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

I would love to see this, but I could not open the link.

kesmarn
Admin

I’ll try to figure out a way to get the pic posted as soon as possible, Murph! Sorry for the tech glitch.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

You did it!

kesmarn
Admin

Thankee! And learned something new in the process. Always fun.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

Hey Nirek….do more stuff like this. Very good.

You are being featured on one of the Planet’s inside pages.

I suspect we will see more of that in the future.

Kalima
Admin

Murph, I explained how this worked on your post to welcome the new members. There is nothing inferior about having a post in Speaker’s Corner. In case you didn’t notice we have more than just the Front Page at The Planet, so I would consider it a favour if you let admin run the site the way we have run it for five years. There is a reason for everything. Thanks.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

AND…all that I said is that this is one of the inside pages which is true….and that I believe we would be seeing more of these kind of features in the future. Which is good.

Kalima
Admin

It’s been done this way since we started The Planet, Murph, even since you joined us.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

I do not agree. This page is hard to find.

Kalima
Admin

That’s why we have the Recent Posts sidebar widget, Murph, all new posts are automatically added to the list. Click on it and it takes you straight to the post.

As I said, there is a reason for everything here.

MurphTheSurf3
Editor

How Great Thou Art

O mighty God, when I behold the wonder
Of nature’s beauty, wrought by words of thine,
And how thou leadest all from realms up yonder,
Sustaining earthly life with love benign,

With rapture filled, my soul thy name would laud,
O mighty God! O mighty God!

When I behold the heavens in their vastness,
Where golden ships in azure issue forth,
Where sun and moon keep watch upon the fastness
Of changing seasons and of time on earth.

With rapture filled, my soul thy name would laud,
O mighty God! O mighty God!

When crushed by guilt of sin before thee kneeling,
I plead for mercy and for grace and peace,
I feel thy balm and, all my bruises healing,
My soul is filled, my heart is set at ease.

With rapture filled, my soul thy name would laud,
O mighty God! O mighty God!

And when at last the mists of time have vanished
And I in truth my faith confirmed shall see,
Upon the shores where earthly ills are banished
I’ll enter Lord, to dwell in peace with thee.

With rapture filled, my soul thy name would laud,
O mighty God! O mighty God!