What the Indians are saying is that they are recognizing the right of wilderness to be wilderness. Wilderness is not an extension of human need or of human justification. It is itself and it is inviolate, itself. This does not mean that, therefore, we become separated from it, because we don't. We stay connected if, once in our lives, we learn exactly what that connection is between our heart, our womb, our mind, and wilderness. And when each of us has her wilderness within her, we can be together in a balanced kind of way. The forever, we have that within us.
Paula Gunn Allen
AT THE TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS WHERE THE BLINDCAN SEE AND THE POOR POSSESS WHERE THE WEAK ARE STRONG AND THE FIRST ONE'S LAST THERE'S A TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS THERE'S A TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS WHERE THE BLIND CAN SEE AND THE POOR POSSESS EVER THANKFUL FOR BEING HONORED GUESTS AT THE TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS THERE'S A TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS THER'S A TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS
THERE'S A TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS WHERE THE BLESSED SING OF HIS TENDERNESS WHERE THE LAME CAN WALK AND THE WEARY REST AT THE TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS WHEN YOU SEARCH SO HARD FOR THE PROMISED LAND BUT THE EARTH WON'T YIELD TO YOUR BLISTERED HANDS AND YOU HANG YOUR HEAD AND YOU WIPE YOUR BROW AND YOU SHOUT IT OUT, SHOUT IT OUT THERE'S A TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS WHERE THE BLIND CAN SEE AND THE POOR POSSESS WHERE THE WEAK ARE STRONG AND THE FIRST ONE'S LAST THERE'S A TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS THERE'S A TABLE IN THE WILDERNESS
That is how life goes--we send our children into the wilderness. Some of them on the day they are born, it seems, for all the help we can give them. Some of them seem to be a kind of wilderness unto themselves. But there must be angels there, too, and springs of water. Even that wilderness, the very habitation of jackals, is the Lord's.
I am asserting that those who love the wilderness should not be wholly deprived of it, that while the reduction of the wilderness has been a good thing, its extermination would be a very bad one, and that the conservation of wilderness is the most urgent and difficult of all the tasks that confront us, because there are no economic laws to help and many to hinder its accomplishment.
To be commanded to love God at all, let alone in the wilderness, is like being commanded to be well when we are sick, to sing for joy when we are dying of thirst, to run when our legs are broken. But this is the first and great commandment nonetheless. Even in the wilderness - especially in the wilderness - you shall love him.
Before your reach your destination, you'll find yourself going through the wilderness. There's some survival skills that you'll need master through the wilderness journey. While in the wilderness, your faith will be tried and tested. You'll become humble. Your vision for your life will get clearer. You're in training for your purpose. You'll lose some friends, because there's some folks who are only with you because of where they think your journey will lead THEM. Don't worry, they're a little confused... but it was meant for them to get lost during this phase. Walk on. Continue on your journey. Soon, you'll be approaching the mountain. Get ready to climb!
In India we're fighting to retain a wilderness that we have. Whereas in the west, it's gone. Every person that's walking down the street is a walking bar code. You can tell where their clothes are from, how much they cost, which designer made which shoe, which shop you bought each item from. Everything is civilized and tagged and valued and numbered and put in it's place. Whereas in India, the wilderness still exists-the unindoctrinated wilderness of the mind, full of untold secrets and wild imaginings.
In our culture of constant access and nonstop media, nothing feels more like a curse from God than time in the wilderness. To be obscure, to be off the beaten path, to be in the wilderness feels like abandonment. It seems more like exile than a vacation. To be so far off of everyone's radar that the world might forget about us for a while? That's almost akin to death... [But] far from being punishment, judgment, or a curse, the wilderness is a gift. It's where we can experience the primal delight of being fully known and delighted in by God.
How much wilderness do the wilderness-lovers want? ask those who would mine and dig and cut and dam in such sanctuary spots as these. The answer is easy: Enough so that there will be in the years ahead a little relief, a little quiet, a little relaxation, for any of our increasing millions who need and want it.
Wilderness can be appreciated only by contrast, and solitude understood only when we have been without it. We cannot separate ourselves from society, comradeship, sharing and love. Unless we can contribute something from wilderness experience, derive some solace or peace to share with others, then the real purpose is defeated.
Sigurd F. Olson
The reason to preserve wilderness is that we need it. We need wilderness of all kinds, large and small, public and private. Wee need to go now and again into places where our work is disallowed, where our hopes and plans have no standing. We need to come into the presence of the unqualified and mysterious formality of Creation.
...We're allotted a little space on earth and that we survive in that wilderness that can take back what it has given, as easily as blowing its breath on us or sending the sea to tell us we are not so big. When we forget how close the wilderness is in the night, my grandpa said, someday it will come in and get us, for we will have forgotten how terrible and real it can be.
Wilderness is rapidly becoming one of those aspects of the American dream which is more of the past than of the present. Wilderness is not only a condition of nature, but a state of mind and mood and heart. It cannot be confined to the museum-case status""seen only as a passing diorama from superlative throughways.
What is proposed herein is that we have no right, nor any ethical justification, for clearing land or using wilderness while we tread over lawns, create erosion, and use land inefficiently. Our responsibility is to put our house in order. Should we do so, there will never be any need to destroy wilderness.
Many, and some of the most pressing, of our terrestrial problems can be solved only by going into space. Long before it was a vanishing commodity, the wilderness as the preservation of the world was proclaimed by Thoreau. In the new wilderness of the Solar System may lie the future preservation of mankind.
Arthur C. Clarke
We deeply need the humility to know ourselves as the dependent members of a great community of life, and this can indeed be one of the spiritual benefits of a wilderness experience. ... [T]o know the wilderness is to know a profound humility, to recognize one's littleness, to sense dependence and interdependence, indebtedness and responsibility.
The exquisite sight, sound, and smell of wilderness is many times more powerful if it is earned through physical achievement, if it comes at the end of a long and fatiguing trip for which vigorous good health is necessary. Practically speaking, this means that no one should be able to enter a wilderness by mechanical means.
The sovereign quality of wilderness is the same wherever encountered.... Each manifestation has an unshackled quality-each stirs untapped longings-each gives a fillip to living-each has an unsurpassed lilt which bursts from the deepest wellsprings of life. These are the realities found in the wilderness of the Great Smoky Mountains.
Something will have gone out of us as a people if we ever let the remaining wilderness be destroyed We need wilderness preserved "" as much of it as is still left, and as many kinds "" because it was the challenge against which our character as a people was formed We simply need that wild country available to us, even if we never do more than drive to its edge and look in. For it can be a means of reassuring ourselves of our sanity as creatures, a part of the geography of hope.
Wilderness appealed to those bored or disgusted with man and his works. It not only offered an escape from society but also was an ideal stage for the Romantic individual to exercise the cult that he frequently made of his own soul. The solitude and total freedom of the wilderness created a perfect setting for either melancholy or exultation.