My Fourth of July weekend consisted of my wife and I devoting our time to nature, while everyone was devoting their time to blowing shit up and doing the particular Fourth of July rituals Industrial Civilization tells us we should do in order to ‘celebrate’ the holiday.
Notice how I put the word celebrate in quotes because I don’t see what there is to celebrate since this is the empire that will end all empires in human history and end the human species.
But this is not what I want to touch on. I want to talk about my weekend in Tallulah Falls, Georgia. It was a weekend where I felt like it was the first time in a very long time I was allowed to get lost in nature. There was no mega city close by or its sprawling suburbs to soak up. It was just me, my wife, and my dog surrounded by wooded mountains, waterfalls, and pristine rivers and lakes.
I finally got the peace and quiet of nature I have been needing. Getting lost in nature to me is not going to a park that’s a few miles in length but is surrounded by Industrial Civilization.
Getting lost in nature is not hearing cars or airplanes or people blasting music over covered picnic tables. It’s being able to feel yourself think and getting lost in the natural sounds of the world all around you. It’s letting time stand still and taking in what’s in front of you. It’s leaving your headphones at home and burying your cell phone in your pocket because you don’t need a distraction, instead you’re getting a reaction from the beauty and sounds in front of you.
In the log cabin my wife and I stayed in there was a little gravel path you walked down that led to an area of grass that ran right along the Tallulah River. One morning I brought my dog down there and as we got to the grass I see a little head poke up from the river to eye me and my dog. This was the head of an otter. As the otter and I looked at each other my thoughts started to race. I felt connected to the otter and to the land in that moment. I felt more connected to this land than any sports team I love or city I have been in. It made me reflect on where I have been in life and where I want my life to go.
I need a breather from this culture and I need to distance myself from this insane rat race as I feel myself and my life being put into a cheese grater. It’s a grind, most people hate it, and this grind is killing us. The US is on course for the lowest average life expectancy levels of all the rich countries worldwide, and will be on par with Mexico by 2030.
So when I think of Industrial Civilization I look at it as an open concept house. And for all of my life I have been in the kitchen that opens up to the living room helping myself to whatever I need, whenever I need it. This is the area of the house that people fully immerse themselves in and where all the activity goes on. Frankly, I am tired of fully immersing myself in Industrial Civilization and seeing all the life killing activities that go on with it.
With that being said I depend on this house for shelter and survival just as I depend on Industrial Civilization for shelter and survival. But what I want to do is distance myself from it and go to a different area of the house.
I want to go to the back of the house where the guest room is located. This way I can get some peace and quiet and hear about the activities going on in the kitchen and living room if I want to, but am no longer immersed in it
This article has been excerpted from: ‘We Belong in Nature’