Experiences of, in, and as nature

One type of encounter with nature involves an awareness and sense of connection that Michael Hogue described as being “of, in, and as nature”. When reflecting on watching rain blow in across a lake and then envelop him, he said . . .

Practices-in-of-nature (rain on lake)“It was an experience of nature’s awesome otherness and its intimacy at the same time, its trickiness, and its indifference to my concerns, timetable, and preferences.

It was an experience in nature that unsettled some of my ordinary perceptual patterns – it is very disorienting to be so enclosed by rain and so intimately close to the sky.

It was an experience as nature, too – I was watered with lake and sky, I was no longer apart from them standing at their edge but had become fully soaked and included within them.”

Eric Holmstrom said “Those words have become aides to thought, imagination, and reflection as I go about my daily activities of living.” And, as he reflected on . . .

“Driving on Highway 202 . . .

the shuddering of the Prius in the extreme crosswinds (of nature),

seeing the raptor on the tree limb hunkered down, not moving but still meeting the challenge of the weather front leading winds as I do (in nature),

and then, contemplating my hybrid in all its complexity as an expression of one species expression of its life (and my own expression) in the numberless niches it has filled (as nature) . . .”

he thought that this way of noticing and appreciating “all locate me particularly and universally” and could be “an element of a spiritual discipline or practice for those of us pondering such things.”


The photo above is copied from the AmbientMixer.com website, where those who are interested can listen to the sound of rain.