East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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Stoic Week day 7: Nature

The final day of the Stoic Week takes us to the Stoic view of Nature, which is at the same time naive and perceptive. We will need to reconcile it with our own modern view, which is in itself an interesting exercise.

The works of the gods are full of providence, and the works of fortune are not separate from nature or the interweaving and intertwining of the hings governed by providence. Everything flows from there. Further factors are necessity and the benefit of the whole universe, of which you are a part. What is brought by the nature of the whole and what maintains that nature is good for each part of nature. Just as the changes in the elements maintain the universe so too do the changes in the compounds.

Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 2.3

We know, living on a world in which resources are rapidly waning and that is slowly turning into a trap from which our civilization might not get out alive, that Nature is not so benign and constant in nurturing us.

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Signs along the road

clues and signsI’m having lots of fun reading Tristan Gooley’s **The Walker’s Guide to Outdoor Clues & Signs”, that has a nice Victorian title and is a sturdy, thick, no-nonsense hardback.
And it talks about what it says on the label.The idea is to provide “walkers” – that is, people that take pleasure in walking, hiking and rambling about… to provide them, I was saying, of the tools to help them read the landscape and understand the relationships between its various elements: hills, rivers, trees, buildings, etc. Continue reading