And why is it not possible to keep a bit of the Wild in your soul, no matter what else you have going on in your life?Can we not be members of society without being completely submissive?Recently I read Gros' A Philosophy of Walking which associated walking with creative thinking and returning to nature.
He wanted people to connect with the Wild, which is even harder to do these days than in his own, especially depending on where a person lives.
In this particular corner of Mexico, there is not really too much empty space, not like in the vast deserts of Arizona where I used to live.
I can easily walk ten, fifteen, twenty, any number of miles, commencing at my own door, without going by any house, without crossing a road except where the fox and the mink do: first along by the river, and then the brook, and then the meadow and the woodside.
There are square miles in my vicinity which have no inhabitant.
The more I read the news these days, the less I see that vision developing. Because you cannot have both on the same plot of ground. And the more people who venture into the wild, the less wild it becomes, even if you are just walking along ruminating.
I began to get a little confused when after all of this admiration for the Wild, he then says this: The weapons with which we have gained our most important victories, which should be handed down as heirlooms from father to son, are not the sword and the lance, but the bushwhack, the turf-cutter, the spade, and the bog hoe, rusted with the blood of many a meadow, and begrimed with the dust of many a hard-fought field. Later he talks about watching some cows playing in a field, acting Wild. But in the very next paragraph I rejoice that horses and steers have to be broken before they can be made the slaves of men, and that men themselves have some wild oats still left to sow before they become submissive members of society. Or that it must be beaten out of both animals and men?
In this essay, first published in the Atlantic Monthly in 1862 and vital to any appreciation of the great man's work, Thoreau explores:• the joys and necessities of long afternoon walks;• how spending time in untrammeled fields and woods soothes the spirit;• how Nature guides us on our walks;• the lure of the wild for writers and artists;• why "all good things are wild and free," and more.
I think that I cannot preserve my health and spirits, unless I spend four hours a day at least—and it is commonly more than that—sauntering through the woods and over the hills and fields, absolutely free from all worldly engagements.
Two close calls last night have convinced me that I need to do something else. It is five miles each way and allows me to listen to audiobooks on the way. Thoreau captures the essence of the individual and nature: Every sunset which I witness inspires me with the desire to go West a distant and as fair as that into which the sun goes the irony of especially today's need a gym crowd: Think of a man's swinging dumbbells for his health, when springs are bubbling up in far-off pastures unsought by him.
I can manage to make a good deal of the trip on green strips and small parks. and something I witness everyday Nowadays almost all man's improvements, so called, as the building of houses and the cutting down of the forests and of all the large trees, simply deform the landscape, and male it more and more tame and cheap.