My relationship to nature

Robin Kimmerle, author of Braiding Sweetgrass (see my review dated March 5, 2019) has a relationship to nature which is different from mine.

Anecdote:

One day I hustled my son out of church because I saw a tick crawling up his neck. Having dealt with it, I was later approached by someone who asserted that ticks had a positive role in nature, a purpose. Food for birds? Feeling flustered and disgruntled (a good Mom keeps ahead of the ticks), I snapped “The only purpose of ticks is to make more ticks!” End of conversation…

This sums up my view: nature is WHAT WORKS. Birds don’t eat berries IN ORDER to spread the seeds of trees and shrubs. Said shrubs don’t produce berries IN ORDER to feed the birds. The birds and shrubs are there (wherever they are) because they can survive there. So when someone describes nature as “generous”, I feel skeptical. Beautiful, yes. Fascinating. But neither kind nor malicious. I love nature. I don’t believe that nature loves me back.

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