First of all, I enjoyed your posts on evolution, creationism and intelligent design. As I mentioned in my previous post, learning how to formulate, articulate and defend an opinion may be the most important learning tool that you can acquire in school, and this is exactly what you did as you researched, developed understandings, and then debated your topics. Kudos to all of you! And now, in preparation for Earth Day 2008 on Tuesday, April 22, let us contemplate (another learning tool to acquire in school!) various aspects of Planet Earth. What I would really like you to do is to find a quiet place where you can be alone with nature and observe and discover all that surrounds you. You could write a nature observation, a poem - even a haiku or two, or an editorial on how you/others value the natural environment. You could find a quotation about nature that is fitting for Earth Day. Or maybe you would like to muse about nature right now -- how has the rebirth of Spring afffected you? (Welcome, Persephone!) This is certainly a beautiful time of year, and one cannot help but be aware of the ebullient (this word's for you, Mitchell) life and activity permeating our natural world. I look forward to reading your ruminations about nature. In closing, and for some inspiration, read this excerpt from a letter written to an artist from a friend:
"I'm absolutely certain that we were meant to appreciate the details of the universe. The fact that the undersides of leaves are as miraculously constructed as the tops, the fact that the surface of a single berry is as splendid as a sunrise sky, the fact that a roadside bush is as fine as a redwood -- these facts convince me that we are designed to be aware of everything: not just the flowers but the roots, not just the stars but the intricate feldspar flecks across a chip of granite. On a very important level, these things are equally alive and important. You know this, of course. In saying it to you, I'm acknowledging the success of your work, because you have noticed and you have priased. We must notice the endlessly complex and beautiful world and we must respond to it, with praise, with art, with changes to our lives and culture. Whether the miracle is in the leaves or the eye or the mind doesn't matter; it exists, it is a certainty; it is within the reach of everyone. I salute you for opening your eyes, for seeing and for responding."