"Adopt the pace of nature. Her secret is patience"

I was recently reading again a book by Ralph Waldo Emerson and his words "Adopt the pace of nature. Her secret is patience" resonated so much with me and with what I think we still have to achieve today as a society.

He wrote Nature in 1836. The problem he lays out and attempts to solve in his essay is: "humans do not fully accept nature's beauty. People are distracted by the demands of the world, whereas nature gives but humans fail to reciprocate".

It seems we haven't made much progress since 1836, making things rather worse. We have been taking so much from nature based on two uncanny assumptions:

1) nature automatically reproduces herself

2) we humans are a separate entity from her

Emerson explains that to experience the wholeness with nature, we must be separate from the flaws and distractions imposed on us by society. He says "To go into solitude, a man needs to retire as much from his chamber as from society. I am not solitary whilst I read and write, though nobody is with me. But if a man would be alone, let him look at the stars."

He believed that solitude is the single mechanism through which we can be fully engaged in the world of nature. When a person experiences true solitude in nature, it "takes him away". Society, he says, destroys wholeness, whereas "Nature, in its ministry to man, is not only the material, but is also the process and the result. All the parts incessantly work into each other's hands for the profit of man. The wind sows the seed; the sun evaporates the sea; the wind blows the vapour to the field; the ice, on the other side of the planet, condenses rain on this; the rain feeds the plant; the plant feeds the animal; and thus the endless circulations of the divine charity nourish man."

Emerson defines a spiritual relationship. In nature a person finds its spirit and accepts it as the Universal Being.

Why I'm a writing about this today? For two main reasons:

  1. because I deeply believe in what he believes and I know how experiencing that wholeness with nature is vital, nurturing, satisfying. Nature has the power to give you the most difficult answers you have been desperately searching for years

  2. naturally I've always been drawn to nature rather than to society. The years when I was pushing and forcing myself to fit into the rhythm and into those fixed paths of our society, my physical and mental health started to show clear signs of intolerance, both through allergies and through a deep sense of sadness and "missing my own half". I'm so glad to have an internal strong instinctual voice that puts me on alerts whenever I'm on the wrong route. This second aspect is what brought me 14 years ago to leave a life made of rushing, working in offices for big companies, commuting, eating badly, sleeping not enough, adjusting my natural biorhythm to the service of others, detaching my natural being from myself, not having enough time to be within nature and so on.

  3. as an artist I feel the relationship with nature is vital for many aspects. Nature is an artist herself. Looking at her pace and seasons makes me think a lot about what we call "ups and downs", those are not "ups and downs". Those are simply our own cycles of creation.

What kills us and what makes us feel more and more depressed or unsatisfied is speed and the constant productivity.

Because of this society we are convinced that if we don't produce something there is something wrong within us. We want to achieve things in no time. We think that working on something for a month is enough or too much. We want to feel that sense of instant gratification wit