To Know Wildness

Recently I found myself walking inside the longest slot canyon in the world. The walls stood as stone waves that narrowed in on one another as they wove towards the sky. Entering into an area rarely seen by others, let alone sunlight, I stood taking in the sheer amazement that my senses were providing me. I couldn’t help but think of an old 1968 Sierra Club magazine that I was perusing that morn. Because my grandmother had cared enough to maintain its near perfect condition, I decided to give it a read. Standing in an atmosphere of chilled air surrounded by rigid sandstone, I thought back to this dusty piece of literature and contemplated the words written in the foreword:

“The future’s right to know the freedom of wilderness is going fast… A tragic loss could be prevented if only there could be broader understanding of this: that the resources of the earth do not exist just to be spent for the comfort, pleasure, or  convenience of the generation or two who first learn how to spend them; that some of the resources exist for saving, and what diminishes them diminishes all mankind; that one of these is wilderness.”   -David Brower, This Is the American Earth

I couldn’t help but agree, as I stood in that canyon, that to in any manner diminish its ability to influence would indeed diminish all mankind. A present of a secret, there is a gift to be found in all of creation.

Where have you met this wildness?

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