We are now in the mountains and they are in us, kindling enthusiasm, making every nerve quiver, filling every pore and cell of us. Our flesh-and-bone tabernacle seems transparent as glass to the beauty about us, as if truly an inseparable part of it, thrilling with the air and trees, streams and rocks, in the waves of the sun,—a part of all nature, neither old nor young, sick nor well, but immortal. ~John Muir
I’ve been thinking a lot about mountains. It’s been too long since I last visited some of the ranges I’m especially fond of. With their lovely snow caps, exquisite waterfalls, clear-running streams, crystal alpine lakes, rugged terrain, variety of trees & wildlife, and incredible vistas, what’s not to miss? John Muir, the Scottish-American who dedicated the latter part of his life to exploring and preserving the mountains of the Western US, was also enamored by them. It is said that Muir exemplified our oneness with the earth, and biographer Donald Worster wrote that (Muir) believed his mission was saving the American soul from total surrender to materialism.” When I read Muir’s quote above, I can feel my heart open to profound spiritual truth.
You must ascend a mountain to learn your relation to matter, and so to your own body, for it is at home there . . . ~Henry David Thoreau
I suppose my love of mountains was forged at an early age. As a young child, I lived in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains, and my family would sometimes drive north to see the more majestic areas of the range. You might imagine how, years later, my infatuation grew as I began exploring ranges with higher and higher elevations.
Every inch of the mountains is scarred by unimaginable convulsions, yet the new day is purple with the bloom of youth and love. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
I have visited a lot of little mountain towns in this country. Oftentimes, I hear that the indigenous people of the area consider their mountains sacred and go to great measures to protect them. That’s not hard for me to understand, as mountains evoke a sense of reverent connection within me. I believe that’s what Muir must have experienced, as well. He wrote letters, articles, & books, and shared conversations with scientists, artists, celebrities, and statesmen in his preservation efforts. Perhaps the pinnacle of his life’s work was co-founding the Sierra Club, thereby helping establish a number of National Parks in this country, which serve to protect his beloved mountains.
The mountains are calling and I must go. ~John Muir
Do you live in the mountains? Does your family vacation in the mountains? Do you spend time hiking or biking them, given the opportunity? What is your favorite memory of mountains? Which is your favorite range?
Oh, these vast, calm, measureless mountain days, days in whose light everything seems equally divine, opening a thousand windows to show us God. ~John Muir
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Blessings for Mountain Love,