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Nature does nothing uselessly.
-- Aristotle (384-322 BC)

* In all things of nature, there is something of the marvelous.
-- Aristotle

"The major problems in the world are the result of the difference between how nature works and the way people think."
~ Gregory Bateson

* Are we to regard the world of nature simply as a storehouse to be robbed for the immediate benefit of man?
~ Kenneth E. Boulding

I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.
~ John Burroughs

Nature teaches more than she preaches. There are no sermons in stones. It is easier to get a spark out of a stone than a moral.
~ John Burroughs

"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." -- Rachel Carson

The most alarming of all man's assaults upon the environment is the contamination of air, earth, rivers, and sea with dangerous and even lethal materials. This pollution is for the most part irrecoverable; the chain of evil it initiates not only in the world that must support life but in living tissues is for the most part irreversible. In this now universal contamination of the environment, chemicals are the sinister and little-recognized partners of radiation in changing the very nature of the world--the very nature of its life. ~ Rachel Carson

* Like music and art, love of nature is a common language that can transcend political or social boundaries.
~ Jimmy Carter

* Reading about nature is fine, but if a person walks in the woods and listens carefully, he can learn more than what is in books, for they speak with the voice of God.
~ George Washington Carver

"Most of us have become Ecozombies, desensitized, environmental deadheads. On average, society conditions us to spend over 95% of our time and 99.9% of our thinking disconnected from nature. Nature's extreme absence in our lives leaves us abandoned and wanting. We feel we never have enough. We greedily, destructively, consume and, can't stop. Nature's loss in our psyche produces a hurt, hungering, void within us that bullies us into our dilemmas."
~ Michael J. Cohen

As we gain satisfaction from artificial substitutes for nature we forget that there is no known substitute for Nature, the real thing and its eons of intelligent, life supportive, experience. Each substitute we create falls short of nature's balanced perfection, thus producing our pollution, garbage and relationship conflicts."
~ Michael J. Cohen

"Everything is connected to everything else. Everything must go somewhere. Nature knows best. There is no such thing as a free lunch. If you don't put something in the ecology, it's not there."
~ Barry Commoner

What is a scientist after all? It is a curious man looking through a keyhole, the keyhole of nature, trying to know what's going on.
-- Jacques Cousteau

The problems we face today, violent conflicts, destruction of nature, poverty, hunger and so on, are human-created problems which can be resolved through human effort, understanding and the development of a sense of brotherhood and sisterhood. We need to cultivate a universal responsibility for one another and the planet we share.
-- 14th Dalai Lama

Children have become disengaged from nature and we need to reintroduce them to the pleasure that it brings. If we do that they will care for it. Through the simple act of planting a tree we can open their eyes to nature's beauty.
-- Dame Judi Dench

* "The belief that we can manage the Earth and improve on Nature is probably the ultimate expression of human conceit, but it has deep roots in the past and is almost universal."
~ René Dubos

"The great ecosystems are like complex tapestries - a million complicated threads, interwoven, make up the whole picture. Nature can cope with small rents in the fabric; it can even, after a time, cope with major disasters like floods, fires, and earthquakes. What nature cannot cope with is the steady undermining of its fabric by the activities of man."
~ Gerald Durrell

“If we have a hope of really understanding our place in nature and of carving out a place for ourselves that is sustainable, it’s primarily because of the new level of communication. It used to be, ‘What you don’t have in your mind, you have on your shelf.’ But now we have the Web.”
~ Sylvia Earle

A human being is a part of the whole, called by us, "Universe," a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest -- a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. Nobody is able to achieve this completely, but the striving for such achievement is in itself a part of the liberation and a foundation for inner security -- Albert Einstein

Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty.
-- Albert Einstein

"To speak truly, few adult persons can see nature. Most persons do not see the sun. At least they have a very superficial seeing. The sun illuminates only the eye of the man, but shines into the eye and heart of the child. The lover of nature is he whose inward and outward senses are still truly adjusted to each other; who has retained the spirit of infancy even into the era of manhood."
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

"In the presence of nature, a wild delight runs through the man, in spite of real sorrows." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience."
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

"The earth will continue to regenerate its life sources only as long as we and all the peoples of the world do our part to conserve its natural resources. It is a responsibility which every human being shares. Through voluntary action, each of us can join in building a productive land in harmony with nature."
~ Gerald Ford

Zoos are becoming facsimiles - or perhaps caricatures -
of how animals once were in their natural habitat.
If the right policies toward nature were pursued,
we would need no zoos at all.
~Michael J. Fox

Our connection to nature grounds us, it makes us more spiritually aware.
We must keep the legacy of nature materially alive for future generations.
-- Nelly Furtado

"Climate change is not just another issue. It is the issue that, unchecked, will swamp all other issues. The only hope lies in all the countries of the world coming together around a common global project to rewire the world with clean energy. This is a path to peace --- peace among people, and peace between people and nature."
-- Ross Gelbspan

"I just have this absolute belief that humans are moving away from cruelty and destruction towards a time when we can truly live in harmony with nature. When we understand that there is a spiritual power around us from which we can draw strength. That is where I believe human destiny ultimately is taking us. I just hope we have time." ~ Jane Goodall

* It's easy to become hopeless. So people must have hope: the human brain, the resilience of nature, the energy of young people and the sort of inspiration that you see from so many hundreds of people who tackle tasks that are impossible and never give up and succeed.
~ Jane Goodall

"We cannot win this battle to save species and environments without forging an emotional bond between ourselves and nature as well - for we will not fight to save what we do not love."
~ Stephen Jay Gould

Tolerance, a term which we sometimes use in place of the words respect, mercy, generosity, or forbearance, is the most essential element of moral systems; it is a very important source of spiritual discipline and a celestial virtue of perfected people.
-- M. Fethullah Gülen

* Only a few people seem to realize that social harmony and peace with nature, between people, and within the individual only can come about when the material and spiritual realms are reconciled.
-- M. Fethullah Gülen

If they [companies] believe they are in business to serve people, to help solve problems, to use and employ the ingenuity of their workers to improve the lives of people around them by learning from the nature that gives us life, we have a chance.
~ Paul Hawken

* If we think systematically, we will stop asking, "How much is nature worth?" We will know that we are a piece of nature ourselves.
~ Karl-Henrik Robèrt

We are at the very point in time when a 400-year old age is dying and another is struggling to be born - a shifting of culture, science, society, and institutions enormously greater than the world has ever experienced. Ahead, the possibility of the regeneration of individuality, liberty, community and ethics such as the world has never know, and a harmony with nature, with one another, and with the divine intelligence such as the world has never dreamed.
-- Dee Ward Hock, founder of Visa

* "Modern man no longer regards Nature as in any sense divine and feels perfectly free to behave toward her as an overweening conqueror and tyrant." ~ Aldous Huxley

* When people, land, and community are as one, all three members prosper; when they relate not as members but as competing interests, all three are exploited. By consulting Nature as the source and measure of that membership, The Land Institute seeks to develop an agriculture that will save soil from being lost or poisoned while promoting a community life at once prosperous and enduring."
-- Wes Jackson

"For if one link in nature's chain might be lost, another might be lost, until the whole of things will vanish by piecemeal."
~ Thomas Jefferson

* "We protect nature not for nature's sake but for our own sake because it's the infrastructure of our communities..."
~ Robert Kennedy, Jr.

"It is wrong to suppose the world was created primarily to serve mankind's purposes and pleasures. A conviction about having dominion over land and water and living things breeds ideas of unwarranted self importance. It is a sobering thought that man's place in Nature's scheme is, after all, a small one."
~ J. Grant MacEwan

* When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world. ~ John Muir

* These temple destroyers, devotees of ravaging commercialism, seem to have a perfect contempt for Nature, and, instead of lifting their eyes to the God of the mountains, lift them to the Almighty Dollar.
~ John Muir

In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
~ John Muir

* I think the environment should be put in the category of our national security. Defense of our resources is just as important as defense abroad. Otherwise what is there to defend? ~ Robert Redford

* "We’ve poisoned the air, the water, and the land. In our passion to control nature, things have gone out of control. Progress from now on has to mean something different. We’re running out of resources and we are running out of time." ~ Robert Redford

"To secure our environmental legacy for future generations, we must find ways to reconcile humanity more satisfactorily with the natural systems upon which all human life and civilizations depend. We must recognize that the natural systems of which we are part have an intrinsic worth transcending narrow utilitarian values. They must be preserved for their own sake. No philosopher or religious thinker has been more sensitive to this intimate relationship between humanity and nature than St. Francis of Assisi. The powerful contemporary environmental tradition of preservation, of reverence for wilderness and protection for all living things - the ideal that sees, as John Muir said, ‘in God’s wildness... the hope of the world’ - virtually began with St. Francis."
-- William K. Reilly, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

* We should be evolving into a new age of business with a worldview that maintains one simple proposition—that all of nature: humans, animals, earth, are interconnected and interdependent.
-- Anita Roddick

* We should be evolving into a new age of business with a worldview that maintains one simple proposition—that all of nature: humans, animals, earth, are interconnected and interdependent.
-- Anita Roddick

The throwing out of balance of the resources of nature throws out of balance also the lives of men.
~ Franklin D. Roosevelt

* Nature provides a free lunch, but only if we control our appetites.
~ William Ruckelshaus, 1st EPA Administrator

"I am drawn to the wild not because it is wild but because it is sensible, logical, ordered, stable, resilient. Wild nature is everything we're struggling to regain."
~ Carl Safina

* "Man talks of a battle with Nature, forgetting that if he won the battle, he would find himself on the losing side." ~ E. F. Schumacher

* "We still have to learn how to live peacefully, not only with our fellow men but also with nature..." ~ E.F. Schumacher

The system of nature, of which man is a part, tends to be self-balancing, self-adjusting, self-cleansing. Not so with technology.
~ E.F. Schumacher

* "The primary threat to nature and people today comes from centralising and monopolising power and control. Not until diversity is made the logic of production will there be a chance for sustainability, justice and peace. Cultivating and conserving diversity is no luxury in our times: it is a survival imperative."
~ Vandana Shiva

* Uniformity is not nature's way; diversity is nature's way.
~ Vandana Shiva

See how nature - trees, flowers, grass - grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence... We need silence to be able to touch souls.
-- Mother Teresa

"We can never have enough of nature."
~ Henry David Thoreau
Walden, 1854

It is the marriage of the soul with Nature that makes the intellect fruitful, and gives birth to imagination.
-- Henry David Thoreau

If you can't be in awe of Mother Nature, there's something wrong with you.
-- Alex Trebek

* I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority.
~ E. B. White

Our approach to nature is to beat it into submission. We would stand a better change of survival if we accommodated ourselves to this planet and viewed it appreciatively instead of skeptically and dictatorially."
~ E. B. White

We shall continue to have a worsening ecologic crisis until we reject the Christian axiom that nature has no reason for existence save to serve man.
~ Lynn White, Jr.

* After you have exhausted what there is in business, politics, conviviality, and so on - have found that none of these finally satisfy, or permanently wear - what remains? Nature remains.
~ Walt Whitman

* Conscious business.. business that is conscious of inner and outer worlds.. would therefore be business that takes into account body, mind, and spirit in self, culture, and nature. Put differently, conscious business would be mindful of the way that the spectrum of consciousness operates in the Big Three worlds of self and culture and nature.
-- Ken Wilber

I believe we would be happier to have a personal revolution in our individual lives and go back to simpler living and more direct thinking. It is the simple things of life that make living worthwhile, the sweet fundamental things such as love and duty, work and rest, and living close to nature. There are not hothouse blossoms that can compare in beauty and fragrance with my bouquet of wildflowers.
-- Laura Ingalls Wilder
Kids | Youth | Adults | Calendar | Quotes | Heroes | Stories | The EMILY Fund | Scholarships
DO ONE THING and BetterWorld Kids Clubs are projects of The EMILY Fund (The Emily Silverstein Fund, Inc.)
Hero portraits are included for illustration purposes only - no celebrity endorsement implied

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