Nature, in a way, is indescribable. For something that is very fundamental and as old as time itself, nature, for some people (both ancient and modern), is even considered divine. In fact, our ancestors worship nature and henceforth sprang the Pagan religion. A lot of artifacts, famous buildings, and symbols we see today and even use are a reference to paganism. For example, the pentagram that is often mistaken as the symbol of the Devil is actually a reference to Venus, a pagan goddess. However, humans’ perspective regarding nature has changed, and it is not for the better.
While our ancestors regarded nature as something divine and they dared not stain it let alone wreaking havoc on it, we modern people regard nature as something that we have at our disposal and is there to serve our purposes. The later is a terribly twisted perspective. We rely on nature in order to live. Nature provides us everything we need. Nature gives us foods to eat, woods to build, metal to make useful contraptions, and countless other things.
We earn a lot of lessons from nature. We learn how to be loyal like dogs, calm like a still lake, tough like the roots of trees which trunks soar up to the sky. Nature teaches us how to be fierce and unpredictable like the wildlife, but also to be gentle like a morning breeze.
We owe a lot to nature, but what have we done in return? Open your eyes to the world today. Humans have inflicted catastrophe upon nature so great that the hurt we caused cannot be hidden anymore. The damages we have done to Mother Earth are laid bare to be seen even with naked eyes. Just take a look at the obvious evidence: global warming. This phenomenon causes lethal climate change that threatens to tear the Antarctica apart and therefore not only bring doom upon the polar bears, but also raises the sea level which can be mortally dangerous especially for certain communities who live in a land below sea level. Who is responsible for this? Us. Look at those dying endangered species, teetering on the brink of extinction, almost losing their existence just because some irresponsible human beings one day come up with this ‘brilliant’ idea that they can make a lot of money by smuggling those species and sell them illegally. Animals losing their home and family just because some greedy fellows can’t get enough of money so they expand their lands by burning the forest. Animals choking on garbage we threw at our whim. Fish filled with cancer because of the polluted river. Sadly, those examples are just a wee bit of numerous horrible things we have done to nature.
I don’t worship nature like the ancient people did, but I see it as a divine beauty that must be protected. I used to live in Jakarta, the capital city of Indonesia which is known for its hot temperature. The average temperature there is 33 degree Celsius which is too hot to endure without air conditioner. I constantly felt bad about using air conditioner way too often, so I decided to move to a cooler city. Fortunately the city where I live now, Bandung, is also a big city, but the air there is still cool and clean. I don’t use air conditioner now and that makes me feel good. I start reducing plastic usage and other things that will take thousands of years to decompose. Small acts like that if done by everyone will make a tremendous change.
Our ancestors were able to understand nature but that ancient wisdom is either lost or forgotten. Humans’ first quest of truth is all about understanding nature, and they succeeded, which explains their behavior and perspective toward nature. Modern humans err because they fail to grasp the true concept of nature. They are too blinded by their greed to see the beauty and importance of it. Thus, we cannot just be a damsel in distress. Everybody should do everything in their power to make amend, to repent for their mistakes and restore what’s damaged. That way, nature can be saved.