Nature encompasses living and non living things in the entire universe. We cannot define nature for it subsumes us.
Do we realize how our perception of nature has changed? When we were primitive beings around 10000 years ago, we were indistinguishable from nature. We lived by its fundamental laws without question or compromise. Existence was a deep abiding philosophy that resonated within all of us because we knew not anything else.
But as we evolved dabbling in technology, we created instruments that would insulate us from nature’s vicissitudes. Vehicles robbed us of the ability to walk across continents. Synthetic medicines took our natural healing power and inculcated the belief that we need assistance to live. Clothes made us bashful of our appearance and removed moderation from our meals. Shoes eradicated our ability to run for miles across torturous terrains. Buildings stripped us of our animal alertness leaving us susceptible to sudden attacks and imbuing us with a false sense of security.
As we progressed, a singular thought blossomed into existence.
Nature is a separate tangible entity. We can control it
We could make it rain or snow and hence nature ought to listen to us. We had the power to destroy and that made us masters of the universe. We have heard phrases of “let us go back to nature” or “let us refresh ourselves by visiting a nature resort.” But have we forgotten that since we are an integral part of nature, there is no separate reality that awaits!
Nature has not changed for it goes about its business with the composure gained over eons of creation. It does not panic at our excesses and instead patiently waits for its turn. It knows something we have forgotten and practically erased from our puny existence. Like Moses, it has a few finite precepts that it has laid down which everyone has to unconditionally follow. Our inability to understand the very basic framework of nature has gotten us to this nadir in human history.
Live peacefully or perish
A predator never slaughters other animals just for the sake of the kill. Only a human can conceive a conflict, plan for it, instigate it and finally drive a prepared resolution.
Nature is a harsh taskmaster because of it brings to bear the full weight of conflict on anyone connected to an event. If you do not succumb the first time, then you will no doubt fall later. Violence simmers in every sinew of its being. Once unleashed then it will erupt and overflow everyone in its vicinity. This is true for dams built, civilizations massacred, wars enacted, cultures stampeded, lands occupied and rights that are buried.
It matters not that you were not aware of your excesses but perish you will. It is the law of nature that has remained unchanging over millions of years. Coexistence is a lifeline thrown to us which needs to be grasped however tenuous it may seem.
Warnings are always given
We must be aware that we are given these omens in the sharpest possible manner. Heart attacks are usually preceded by symptoms like sweating, headaches, vomiting, etc. Cloud predates rain while the sun is a precursor to the cloud. The plague was an omen of a time when human life had lost its relevancy.
If life were an exam, then nature is a great teacher. It has given us notes in class, called us in for revision, handed out pop quizzes and even tested us before the final exam was laid out. But we closed our eyes long ago and decided to let life take us to a place of its choosing. If we are sheep, then to the slaughterhouse we are led.
Every action will be returned with interest
It is not by chance that religions ask us to be of good nature, implores us to not lay waste to our surroundings, debates with us to diminish our needs and demands us to exhibit the kindness inside our soul. After all, religions evolved from the first preceptor which was Mother nature.
As we create ripples that flow away from the epicenter of us, even more powerful variants flow right back. Sometimes these counter ripples buffet us with more power than we anticipated. When we insult someone then you can assume that eventually those insults will be returned with interest from an unanticipated direction. Good deeds of any kind will be answered in full provided you are prepared to bide your time.
One lie leads to a thousand. According timely help to an accident victim seems to energize people around for they all pitch in to help one way or the other. When we rail against life, we are beset with infinitely more untoward instances. A spiritual master because of his/her enlightened penumbra is able to attract millions of people. One stone thrown in a riot results in a fusillade that takes lives. When you face the day with a bad disposition, a series of unfortunate incidents keep happening until you are not able to negotiate it any more. If we slaughter a few trees for impeding our way for our life, torrential rains will wipe the slate clean by taking a few thousand lives.
Nature is a very transactional creature but we as human beings are ever mindful of the past and simultaneously entranced by the future. The cork floats on the unruliest of oceans while gleaming ships go down in seemingly tranquil waters. If we refuse to balance on the beam of life, then fall we will.
Nothing will go unnoticed
Imagine if you will a mental scar on a child who has been silently abused. It will never really disappear and many a time the adult avatar will eventually be able to recollect the incident that caused it. A tree that wilts remembers that it was never watered. A murder unfolds due to anomalous events that occurred a lifetime ago. A crack in the road was caused by sun constantly beating down – because there was no rain – due to a concreteredesign of the landscape – preceded by deforestation.
Nature is the mother of all blockchains. It is a ledger that has been in the making for billions of years. Each event is an aggregation of all the events that preceded it. A simple cause-effect analysis would be dead wrong because of the interregnum between happenings.
Anger scalds emotions and evaporates relationships. Prejudice is a flame that devours entire generations. Life is a candle that burns itself out. Hatred and envy use the soul for tinder until there is nothing else left. War burns entire civilizations into charred remnants of their once resplendent selves. Bitter words remain as embers that can fan flames across the most pristine of moments. The searing cauldron of nature does not take prisoners of love, despair, hope, faith, strength or beauty.
Forest fires raze millions of acres of fertile lands. Lava combusts lava until there is only the crust of annihilation left. Stars smolder for millions of centuries until they are no more. Meteors immolate themselves into fireballs that vaporize in a flashing instant.
Conflagration is a bed on which we repose for our entire lives without understanding the price of our supine senses. We do not comprehend that this simmering fire can rage in a fraction of a second. Truth will set us free for it is perhaps the flame that burns the brightest ameliorating everything that it encounters into dust. If we presume constancy, then the moment burns itself into a golden crisp withering to the touch.
Persevere or fail
Absolutely nothing prepares us for the sheer bloody mindedness that is required to negotiate nature’s paradise alley. It is a path across which stretches a taut and threatening tripwire. Experience is perhaps the best teacher in our pursuit. nature perseveres no matter the circumstances.
An ant does not dwell on the enormous difficulties of rolling a cube of sugar for tens of meters. A lion does not spare a thought when hunger accompanies it for weeks on end. Blind people do not stop walking because they bump into objects every other minute. Cacti grow in places where there is not a single drop of water in the air or below the ground. A river worries at a dam for decades until it figures out how to breach it. A redwood tree that stands for thousands of years does not question the monotony of its existence. A black hole spends a few million years to deliver itself from the womb of its dying parent star.
If we need to be taught a lesson, then life will work at it tirelessly until we are shown our follies. It does not give up just because we escape a few times. It is quixotic to not anticipate obstacles and delinquent to not prepare for them. We are also naïve to downgrade others because of the perceived ease of their traversal through life. A carefree being is one that is so, despite having to run a steeplechase for the duration of its life. If we presume a smooth endeavor, then struggle we will across insurmountable passes through the mountains of life.
Fairness is an illusion
Human beings always go through life expecting it to be fair or at worse to not be unfair. We anticipate that the dice has to roll a six when we want it to or at least sometimes. But we forget that nature by its very function, has no emotions. It is just an executioner who swings his axe without wondering about the identity of his victim. In fact, nature wonders what the big fuss is about fairness.
A dog that knows the end is at hand does not waste its time by remonstrating about the apparent lack of fairness in its life. Instead it curls up and waits for death to advance. A tree does not enquire about its utterly wasteful felling at the prime of its life. We humans debate at length and eventually castigate nature for its step motherly treatment to us. Hope tempered by a dash of realism works wonders with everyday living. When we discard this tenet, then we chose the mordant path of self-pity, pusillanimity and prevarication.
Ignore at your own peril
We know by now that time’s inexorable progression makes nature an unstoppable force. Tiny water drops falling for centuries can bore a hole in solid stone. A stomach ulcer forms after decades of eating disagreeable food. A niggle in your knee can turn into a bone grinding arthritic pain. A small disagreement if not sorted out right away balloons into a major conflict over time causing untold suffering.About Eight thousand years ago the Storegga slide that left a 300 Kilometer swathe on the bottom of the ocean floor; was caused by a slow and steady methane buildup over a span of hundreds of years.
When we do not act immediately, then events pile up driving the wedge deeper. One day the first evidence will be a completely unanticipated scenario. When we attempt to handle or manage the problem, we find that it is no longer possible. Our only option then is to contain it and that induces loss of; principles, material wealth, peace of mind, health and purpose. If we chose to abdicate our responsibilities, then the abyss closes in on us with no chance of escape.
Might is indeed right
In its most simplistic rendition, nature is a juggernaut propelled by forces that are beyond our comprehension and control. But one inescapable conclusion has proved right since the dawn of time. nature is quite unapologetic about the fact that strength and power win most conflicts. The edge is always on the side of whoever is able to create the most momentum. Technology is nothing but amplifying or harnessing that strength. This leads to some rather basic formulations.
If there is a powerful landlord, then he will control an entire village. Large monolithic companies that are intensely focused will dominate any area of business that they are a part of. Oceans are by far the most challenging force known to mankind because of their strength, size and energy. The Gatling gun was known to have effectively ended the Red Indian uprising in the USA despite the advantage of superior numbers. The nuclear bomb was responsible of the genocide of millions of Japanese citizens punctuating the termination of the 2nd world war. The French revolution was a success because the common folk just overran the elite. A volcano will shred any advancement of human civilization however profound it may be.
Most of us have a world view that is centered on individual rights. Rights are a desire of the ignorant mind created by human beings. nature by design does not care about a human construct that has no relevance on a cosmic scale. Events move ponderously but with enough momentum to thrust aside any resistance. There is no right or wrong but merely the one that has the most chance of succeeding. If we are fanatical about privileges, then we will be taught in precise mathematical terms of why such expectations are doomed!
Be grateful for what you will receive
Perhaps this is nature’s most painful mandate for all of its denizens. Gratitude is becoming of one and all for the bounty that is showered upon us. Almost all spiritual as well as religious seers stress on this one rule, because they understand the munificence of nature better than that of the average soul. There is no arguing with nature for whatever it yields, it does so with extreme generosity.
When a condemned jailbird is pardoned for his crimes, it is of utmost necessity to recognize the boon of freedom. A tree will forever be grateful that it was spared by lightning. A hunter relishes the food that is captured. An orphan is indebted to every morsel that passes his lips. A child knows that it is lucky to have parents taking care of its needs. Rivers are thankful if they are not stopped and they show their appreciation with clean sparkling water. The earth finds itself fortunate even if a small set of people fight for its right to survive. A teacher appreciates if his children turn out honest, righteous and hard working. Animals are inherently grateful never abusing their ecosystem.
Gratitude must dwell deep within all of mankind. The life that we lead, the things we do and the freedom we are afforded is possible because nature allows us those things. Being grateful shrinks our ego and affords us a path to coexist with our environment. But if there is absence of gratitude, then our actions are greedy and consequences are terrifying. We can rest assured that nature will have the last word on the cancer of entitlement that has corroded human civilization.
Nature is absolute
We are all cogs in nature’s inter galactic machine. it is a thriving and fulfilling automation that runs across generations stretching to the end of civilization itself. We are but minutiae connected by a powerful set of rules that govern and limit us. There is no scope for us to ignore these rules for we are forged in them. To deny them is hypocrisy while to accept them is assumed. Our position in life is a benediction of nature. May we adhere to its tenets, inter our egos, inhale its learning’s and extol its omnipresence.