A Perspective Altering Experience

I’ve been thinking about the winter storm that occurred here recently. It was particularly devastating, heavy wet snow bending and snapping off 50-year-old trees and creating nearly impossible traveling conditions that left many of us home-bound longer than we’re used to. The event has me thinking about my relationship with the natural world.

I know Nature’s sublimity appears on nearly a daily basis: tornadoes, hurricanes, deadly fires, but the reality of experiencing it firsthand gives the event greater significance. My usual compatibility with nature has been upset. I’m experiencing a disconnect, an inclination to find nature as hostile rather than nurturing.

Avoiding a hostile natural environment may mean self-imposed isolation. Cocooning oneself into interior spaces might result in dark contemplations, socially unhealthy behaviors detrimental to one’s well-being. On the upside, I suspect the deeply insightful writings of the likes of Knute Hamsen and Soren Kierkegaard or the disturbing yet moving paintings of Edvard Munch wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for the challenges they had to face living in the northern climes.

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