“As a man changes his nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him.”
In other words, “Be the change that you want to see in the world.”- Mahatma Ghandi. In this world and these changing times, this message is growing increasingly more pertinent towards the environmentalists, outdoorsmans, the conservationists, and nature-lovers of all kinds because a love for the wild does nothing if that love is not acted on. By instilling within others that same love we will be inspiring the future wildness protectors and practitioners for generations to come.
Practice what you preach and educate and inspire. Help others plant their roots in the majesty of the outdoors and by doing so you assume the voice of the songbirds and the croaking frogs, the creeping vines and the growing seeds- you employ the voice of the wild. Sometimes, all someone needs is a guiding hand.
The caveat to this is the fact that you cannot replant an already planted tree. Find someone who has roots in the electronics and the gasoline and concrete and show the love to them. It helps no one to preach to a fellow like-minded individual, instead we have to reach out to those that do not yet understand nor enjoy the outdoors. We can and must be the people that show new people what it is love nature.
“Not all who wander are lost.”
Nature lovers are not lost souls and free floating romantics. We are as grounded as anybody and must show that what we believe in is a salient and physical aspect of a healthy life. Tree-hugger sounds like cloud watcher and some undoubtedly view it as a waste of time or a fantasy ideal but it is a powerful way of viewing the forest. Sometimes we miss the trees by looking at the forest and we forget that a single tree has the power to give life and to build life. Nature lovers are not pot smoking hippies but individuals with a deep love for the natural state of the world around them. We do not hike to get lost or escape the world but hike to find ourselves. By teaching other people how to achieve that view of the world, we may just show someone their place in the world.
“The Greatest Threat to our Planet is the Belief that Someone Else Will Save it.”
If you are upset about the melting of ice caps and raising sea levels and the cutting of forests and receding ozone levels.
If you fear human caused smog and acid rain and flooding and drought.
If you fear the land to burn and the wild to hurt and the world to forget its wild roots.
If you fear these things, then you have the power to fight it. Find what you fear the most and change it by fighting for it and believing in it and supporting it because the minute we expect or rely on other people to change what we want to change, the rug may be pulled out from under us. We need everyone we can get to stand up and use that powerful voice we all can use to fix what we need to.
We can only protect the outdoors if we train an army to defend it. We do not and will not fight AGAINST, but FOR.
We can become protectors of the wild lands we love and enjoy.