Wilderness Quotes

A definition is the enclosing a wilderness of idea within a wall of words.

Samuel Butler

The clearest way to the Universe is through a forest wilderness.

John Muir

We must go beyond textbooks, go out into the bypaths and untrodden depths of the wilderness and travel and explore and tell the world the glories of our journey.

John Hope Franklin

To live without an aim is to wander in a wilderness

Shri Radhe Maa

Generally speaking, a howling wilderness does not howl: it is the imagination of the traveler that does the howling.

Henry David Thoreau

We did not think of the great open plains, the beautiful rolling hills, and winding streams with tangled growth, as "wild." Only to the white man was nature a "wilderness" and only to him was the land "infested" with "wild" animals and "savage" people. To us it was tame. Earth was bountiful and we were surrounded with the blessings of the Great Mystery. Not until the hairy man from the east came and with brutal frenzy heaped injustices upon us and the families we loved was it "wild" for us. When the very animals of the forest began fleeing from his approach, then it was that for us the "Wild West" began.

Luther Standing Bear

However, there are all sorts of behaviours in the Bible that might be called mad now, but aren't designated as insanity by the text itself. People see visions of angels going up and down ladders, of fiery chariots and, like Moses, who hears a bush talking, and Balaam the prophet who has a conversation with his donkey, they hear voices of those who cannot be said to be present in any usual sense of the word. They also speak in tongues, as the disciples do at Pentecost. Like madness, the visions, the voices and the speaking in tongues are due to external and usually divine agencies. In a world so permeated with supernatural powers, there are no accidents, and in one so riddled with prophets who went into a frenzy while prophesying many more kinds of behaviour were accepted as normal, at least for a prophet or an inspired person, than would be the case now. John the Baptist, dressed in animal skins and wandering around in the wilderness denouncing his social superiors, was not thought of as a de-institutionalized street person who's gone off his medications, but as a saint. And this was the pattern for mediaeval views of aberrant behaviour if you were acting crazy it was a divine punishment, or else you were possessed, by powers either divine or demonic perhaps aided, in the latter case, by witches.

Margaret Eleanor Atwood

We deeply need the humility to know ourselves as dependent members of a great community of life, and this can indeed be one of the spiritual benefits of a wilderness experience

Howard Zahnhiser

No one should be able to enter a wilderness by mechanical means.

Garrett Hardin

Working to preserve in perpetuity is a great inspiration. We are not fighting a rear-guard action, we are facing a frontier. We are not slowing down a force that inevitably will destroy all the wilderness there is. We are generating another force, never to be wholly spent, that, renewed generation after generation, will be always effective in preserving wilderness. We are not fighting progress. We are making it. We are not dealing with a vanishing wilderness. We are working for a wilderness forever.

Howard Zahniser

Plans to protect air and water, wilderness and wildlife are in fact plans to protect man.

Stuart Udall

How much wilderness do the wilderness-lovers want? ask those who would mine and dig and cut and dam in such sanctuary spots as these. The answer is easy: Enough so that there will be in the years ahead a little relief, a little quiet, a little relaxation, for any of our increasing millions who need and want it.

Wallace Stegner

How often we speak of the great silences of the wilderness and of the importance of preserving them and the wonder and peace to be found there. When I think of them, I see the lakes and rivers of the North, the muskegs and expenses of tundra, the barren lands beyond all roads. I see the mountain ranges of the West and the high, rolling ridges of the Appalacians. I picture the deserts of the Southwest and their brilliant panoramas of color, the impenetrable swamp lands of the South. They will always be there and their beauty may not change, but should their silences be broken, they will never be the same.

Sigurd F. Olson

The richest values of wilderness lie not in the days of Daniel Boone, nor even in the present, but rather in the future.

Aldo Leopold

We must reinstate Jesus in the rightful place which belongs to Him in the church; or the church will soon be driven into the wilderness.

Thomas March Clark

Christ of his gentleness, / Thirsting and hungering / Walked in the wilderness; / Soft words of grace he spoke / Unto lost desert-folk / That listened wondering.

Robert Graves

The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders.

Edward Abbey

The Promised Land always lies on the other side of a Wilderness.

Havelock Ellis

Here with a Loaf of Bread beneath the Bough,A Flask of Wine, a Book of Verse - and Thou Beside me singing in the Wilderness - And Wilderness is Paradise endow.

Omar Khayyam

"To be commanded to love God at all, let alone in the wilderness, is like being commanded to be well when we are sick, to sing for joy when we are dying of thirst, to run when our legs are broken. But this is the first and great commandment nonetheless. Even in the wilderness - especially in the wilderness - you shall love him."

Frederick Buechner

Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out going to the mountains is going home; that wilderness is a necessity..."

John Muir

"The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness."

John Muir

Wilderness is not defined by the absence of certain activities, but rather by the presence of certain unique and invaluable characteristics.

Nick Rahall

Wilderness designations should not be the result of a quid pro quo. They should rise or fall on their own merits.

Nick Rahall
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