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wundayatta's avatar

Do you have a memorable moment, alone in nature?

Asked by wundayatta (58571points) February 12th, 2010

A lot of people seem to have peak moments, often accompanied with spiritual revelations when they are alone in nature. I’d like to hear about other people’s experiences (if any), where something like this happened. Later on (like after 20 answers, if I get that many), I’d be interested in seeing if there’s anything common to these experiences that might help explain them.

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12 Answers

Rarebear's avatar

No spiritual or individual experiences in particular, but I go backpacking often. However, I tend to get altitude sickness pretty easily so the second day of backpacking while everybody goes day hiking, I usually hang out at a lake—sometimes take a short hike to a bluff, find a nice rock in the sun, put some sunscreen on, and enjoy the view while reading a book. No ipod, no noise, no people, no computer, and no TV.

DominicX's avatar

I don’t know about any vision quests or anything, but there’s something about mountain biking in the Tahoe wilderness of California and Nevada far away from other people. Okay, maybe a passing cyclist on the trail, but sometimes I will park my bike somewhere and just go exploring a bit in the woods. I always make sure I have a general sense of where I’m going, but it’s just nice to kind of wing it sometimes. I’ve come across beautiful meadows, creeks, rocks, flowers, manzanitas, and of course groves of pine and fir trees. The silence and the beauty of it is something I crave. It was during a moment like this when I was in a wooded area and saw a pathway winding into the forest, disappearing, and I heard thunder in the distance (even though it was sunny) and there were flowers and everything and I just basically came to realize just how beautiful this planet really is and how so many people don’t appreciate it. I had always appreciated it, but this made me appreciate it more. I haven’t gone mountain biking since last August and I am really looking forward to going with my boyfriend again. I love it.

Aethelwine's avatar

I was sitting on a dock during one of our vacations up north. I was sitting back with my eyes closed, enjoying a quiet moment in the sun. I suddenly heard a whooshing sound coming from my right. I looked up and an eagle flew right above me. I had never witnessed the beauty of an eagle that close before. It really heightened my senses and a feeling came over me that I had never felt before. I’ll never forget that moment. I can hear that whooshing sound as I type this.

Cruiser's avatar

Last fall I was out jogging…running to be specific….and like a rush of a huge ocean wave I was consumed by a rush of realization about the abruptness of life….the old life is too short sucker punched me….still feel it today…I will never forget that moment.

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

One of my favorite things to do as a kid was to go lie down in cornfields and watch the sky, changing clouds, listen to breezes and other noises as well as savor the smell of the dirt. If I watched the sky long enough then I’d feel apart from my body, no out of body but not be able to distinguish my feet, legs, torso or arms from the feeling of the ground beneath me. There were no revelations or halucinations but it was really peaceful and felt like being held.

phoebusg's avatar

Many. Swimming in the middle of a sea-water channel, and laying there on my back. In a huge body of water, by myself. Land barely on sight.
8 meters under the water, in same channel – really deep waters. Blue waters, shining through in beams looking up – deep blue undernearth.

On top of mountains with great view and no civilization in sight.

There’s something about being alone, in nature. Love it.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Many:) Alone on my boat driving through the marshes was one of the most peaceful feelings ever.There is also a preserve that gives me that same feeling every time I have been there.Indescribable.You know it when you feel it.Sadly,I don’t get there often but thinking about it always makes me smile :)

Rarebear's avatar

Oh, I just remembered one. Last summer I was in upstate New York at a remote Adirondacks lake. The lake was still as glass, so I took a kayak out for a nighttime paddle. I sat in the middle of the lake listening to distant crickets watching a remote lightning storm flash in the distance, while looking up to a clear night sky.

Likeradar's avatar

My most memorable one is the first time I took shrooms, in the hills of Northern California. I was looking at a the most beautiful tree, saw woodland creatures all around, and felt so incredibly peaceful and like such a part of nature. It was an amazing realization of how beautiful life and the world is. I know it was drug induced, but it stuck with me and actually helped pull me out of a fairly big depressive funk. I’m reminded of it every time I start thinking walking to the recycling bin is too much work.

Haleth's avatar

I often feel that way when I’m alone in the city. It’s not really the answer to your question, but I think urban life is just as meaningful as nature. There’s this roof in my neighborhood that my ex showed me. It’s a pretty shitty neighborhood. I go up there a lot at night to think, because it’s quiet and peaceful but has a great view of everything going on below. You can see the whole area from there, people walking around on the streets, traffic, stores, back alleys- everything.

I felt really lonely one night during the summer before I left for college, so I went up there to think. After a few minutes I felt this huge rush of sweeping potential. Not just for me, but for… everyone. From where I was, I saw the city as an intricate web of lights, and behind every light there was a person who was striving for something. I felt so connected at that time.

OpryLeigh's avatar

When I was a kid, probably about 11 or 12 years old I used to go to work a lot with my dad if I wasn’t at school. Because my dad works as a referee/umpire for sports events his work place wasn’t always in one set venue. One day I went with him to a town in England called Swindon. While he was working I left the venue to explore and found, what I can only describe as, a secret garden. I stayed there for hours and was the only person there for the whole time. There was no litter, plenty of trees, plants and a stream. I loved it and was very sad when I had to leave. I’m not sure if I would call it a spiritual experience but for those few hours I felt very happy and carefree (and if you knew me you would know that those feelings don’t come easily for me). I’ve never found a place quite like it since and I often wonder if that place is still as untouched and quiet as it was then.

wundayatta's avatar

@Haleth Your description of that experience sounds very similar to one I had just before I went away to college. I, too, saw the intricate web of lights, and I also felt like every light was a person, and that this web made me feel a part of all humanity.

The only real difference is that my lights were above me, not below me. I was looking up on a sparkling clear night (probably one of the last in that area) to see all the stars, and feeling myself falling up into them; one among many, one no longer separate from any.

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