Saturday, November 22, 2008

Learn From Nature

Dear Joseph,

It is getting cold outside, and we will soon be seeing snow on the ground. When I was a little guy, I used to wonder what happened to all the animals during winter? Where did they sleep? How did they stay warm? Where did they get their food? Actually, I worried about them. After all, some of the squirrels and birds were born just a few months earlier. How could they know what to do?
A lot of young animals learn just by watching their parents and imitating what they do. You probably do a lot of that yourself. Like we humans, the parents will scold the little ones when they do something dangerous or wrong. They do not scold them to be mean, they do it so that the little ones will learn things that will keep them safe and warm as winter comes.

I hope you spend some of your time watching all this and the other things nature has to teach. Spending time watching clouds and how the weather changes; watching how the squirrels mix work and play; seeing how the trees and flowers bloom in spring and fade in winter; all these will teach you a lot about life and how to stay safe. Watching the animals can teach us a sense of being responsible for taking care of ourselves so that we don't have to rely on others. Watching the parents gathering food and feeding their little ones teaches us to nurture one another and to help those who need our help.

I believe that fast cars, houses with closed windows and heat and air conditioners, staying inside too much and a lot of other things about the way we live has separated us too much from Mother Nature. She has a lot to teach us. Watching her and the animals and the plants can open up a world of rich beauty and knowledge that you cannot learn in school.

I hope life will allow us the opportunity to sit in a field and just watch together. I hope there will be time enough for us to sit in a boat or a kayak and feel the power of the water as we bob up and down (I will write more about this another time). I hope that we will have time to watch the clouds together and see how many pictures we can spot up in the sky. We shall see.

Papa loves you.