George Carlin - Carl Sagan - Gustave Flaubert - Alexander Pope - Baron d’Holbach - Lucretius - Auctoritates Aristotelis - David Attenborough TV - William Ralph Inge - Thomas Paine - Richard Dawkins TV - Horizon TV - Kenneth Clark TV - Adolf Hitler - Edward Teller - Arthur Eddington - Richard Feynman - Genius of Britain TV - Annie Dillard - E B White - John Dewey - Friedrich Nietzsche - Titus Lucretius Carus - John Milton - Neil deGrasse Tyson - John Muir - Theodore Roosevelt - D H Lawrence - Plato - Brian Cox TV - John Keats - William Osler - Stella Gibbons - Charles Darwin - Darwin’s Struggle: The Evolution of the Origin of Species - Andrew Marr TV - Alfred Russel Wallace - Daniel C Dennett - Jacob Bronowski TV - Anton Chekhov - John Lubbock - William Wordsworth - Susanne Langer - Samuel Daniel - Miguel de Cervantes - William Coldstream & James Fox TV - Vincent van Gogh - Simon Schama TV - Michael Baigent - Rembrandt - Claude Monet - Pierre-Auguste Renoir - Auguste Rodin - Paul Gauguin - Paul Cezanne - Tim Marlow TV - Edward Hopper - Joshua Reynolds - Amedio Modigliani - The Young Ones TV - Anatole France - Werner Heisenberg - Henry David Thoreau - Cormac McCarthy - Dave Foreman and Bill Haywood - Maurice Maeterlinck - Michael Crichton - Ursula K Le Guin - Wendell Berry - Woody Allen - Baruch Spinoza - Francois Rabelais - Rudolf Steiner - Bhagavad Gita - A E Housman - Ben Jonson - Adam Smith - Alfred Lord Tennyson - Rab C Nesbitt TV - Robert Burns - Chung Tzu - William Whewell - James McNeill Whistler - Edward Lord Thurlow - Robert G Ingersoll - Horace - William Shakespeare - Francis Bacon - Jim Al-Khalili TV - Leonardo da Vinci - Sylvia Plath - Rachel Carson - Lord Byron - Albert Einstein - Percy Bysshe Shelley - William Blake - Henri Poincare - Bjork - Robert Frost - John Ruskin - Jane Austen - Mary Shelley - Thomas Browne - Mark Twain - Ken Burns TV - Orchoth Zadikkim - Carry on Camping 1969 - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe - Hunting the Hidden Dimension TV - Galileo - Joseph Barrell - Penn Jillette - Henry David Thoreau - George Eliot – Julius Caesar - Adam Curtis TV - Werner Herzog & Grizzly Man 2005 - Earth’s Natural Wonders TV - Morgan Freeman TV - The UnXplained with William Shatner TV - James Fox TV - Restoring the Earth: The Age of Nature TV -
That’s what got us in trouble in the first place – interfering with Nature. Meddling. Doesn’t anybody understand that? … Stop interfering. Leave Nature alone: haven’t we done enough damage?… And the supreme arrogance – Save the Planet. Are these people kidding? Save the planet? We don’t even know how to take care of ourselves. We haven’t learned to care for one another – we’re gonna save the fucking planet? George Carlin, Napalm & Silly Putty
By the way, there’s nothing wrong with the planet in the first place – the planet is fine. The people are fucked! Compared with the people, the planet is doing great; it’s been there over four billion years … Believe me, the planet has put up with much worse than us … The planet isn’t going anywhere, folks. We are. We’re going away. Pack your shit, we’re going away. And we won’t leave much of a trace. Thank God for that. Nothing left. Maybe a little styrofoam. The planet will be here and we’ll be gone. Another failed mutation. Another closed-end biological mistake. The planet will shake us off like a bad case of fleas, and it will heal itself, because that’s what the planet does – it’s a self-correcting system. The air and water and earth recover and be renewed, and if plastic is not degradable, well, most likely, the Earth will include it in a new paradigm. Earth plus plastic. The Earth doesn’t share our prejudice against plastic. Plastic came out of the Earth; She probably sees it as one of her many children. In fact, it could be the reason the Earth allowed us to be spawned in the first place – it wanted plastic and didn’t know how to make it. It needed us. That could be the answer to our age-old question: why are we here? Plastic, assholes! ibid.
Oh Beautiful for smoggy skies, insecticided grain,
For strip-mined mountain’s majesty above the asphalt plain.
America, America, man sheds his waste on thee,
And hides the pines with billboard signs, from sea to oily sea. George Carlin
In this way, science has emasculated the old gods. It has stripped them of their powers and has instead allotted them to a source that is wholly neutral, one that is indifferent to the affairs of men, one scientists refer to as the forces of nature.
Now I can certainly understand why humans would desire to believe in a God, in a force that cares about us, that treats us as its favoured creatures. Believing in a God provides us with a sense of purpose, with a sense that we are immortal. Professor Carl Sagan
Every aspect of Nature reveals a deep mystery and touches our sense of wonder and awe. Those afraid of the universe as it really is, those who pretend to nonexistent knowledge and envision a Cosmos centred on human beings will prefer the fleeting comforts of superstition. They avoid rather than confront the world. But those with the courage to explore the weave and structure of the Cosmos, even where it differs profoundly from their wishes and prejudices, will penetrate its deepest mysteries. Carl Sagan
I tried to discover, in the rumour of forests and waves, words that other men could not hear, and I pricked up my ears to listen to the revelation of their harmony. Gustave Flaubert, November
Nature and Nature’s laws lay hid in night:
God said, ‘Let Newton be.’ And all was light. Alexander Pope
First follow Nature, and your judgement frame
By her just standard, which is still the same:
Unerring Nature, still divinely bright,
One clear, unchanged, and universal light,
Life, force and beauty must to all impart,
At once the source, and end, and test of art. Alexander Pope, An Essay on Criticism, 1711
All are but parts of one stupendous whole,
Whose body is, Nature is, and God the soul. ibid.
All nature is but art, unknown to thee;
All chance, direction, which thou canst not see;
All discord, harmony, not understood;
All partial evil, universal good. ibid.
Thus God and nature linked the gen’ral frame,
And bade self-love and social be the same. ibid.
If ignorance of Nature gave birth to the gods, knowledge of Nature is destined to destroy them. Baron d’Holbach, Systeme de la Nature, 1770
Art is only Nature operating with the aid of the instruments she has made. ibid.
Fear is the mother of all gods. Nature does all things spontaneously by herself without their meddling. Lucretius
God and Nature do nothing in vain. Auctoritates Aristotelis, attributions inc Marsilius of Padua
I often get letters, quite frequently, from people who say how they like the programmes a lot, but I never give credit to the almighty power that created nature. To which I reply and say, ‘Well, it’s funny that the people, when they say that this is evidence of the Almighty, always quote beautiful things. They always quote orchids and hummingbirds and butterflies and roses.’ But I always have to think too of a little boy sitting on the banks of a river in west Africa who has a worm boring through his eyeball, turning him blind before he’s five years old. And I reply and say, ‘Well, presumably the God you speak about created the worm as well.’ And now I find that baffling to credit a merciful God with that action. And therefore it seems to me safer to show things that I know to be truth, truthful and factual, and allow people to make up their own minds about the moralities of this thing, or indeed the theology of this thing. David Attenborough, Life on Air
The natural world is the greatest of all treasures. And yet in my lifetime we have damaged it more severely than in the whole of the rest of the human history. Attenborough: 60 Years in the Wild III: Our Fragile Planet, BBC 2012
Peter [Scott] had his own natural history series on television: it was called Look. ibid.
Life in Cold Blood 2008: The Giant Galapagos Tortoise – they live longer than any other animal on Earth, well over a hundred and fifty years. ibid.
Dian Fossey had been studying the Mountain Gorilla. ibid.
I actually witnessed the extinction in the wild of the Panamanian Golden Frog which fell victim to the same insidious killer. ibid.
I have been enthralled by coral reefs ever since. ibid.
The change is already beginning to be seen at the Poles. ibid.
The power of the Sun drives the seasons transforming our planet. Vast movements of ocean and air currents bring dramatic change throughout the year. David Attenborough, Nature’s Great Events, BBC 2009
Here in the Arctic each summer the Sun begins to melt the winter ice. ibid.
He [polar bear] must catch a seal about once a week. ibid.
For polar bears it’s the survival of the fattest. ibid.
The frozen sea begins to melt. Pools form across the surface. ibid.
A thousand freshwater cascades plummet into the sea. ibid.
Walrus are year-round residents of the Arctic. ibid.
The once-frozen ocean is now bursting with life as all the animals enjoy the summer feast. ibid.
Looking down from two miles above the surface of the Earth, it’s impossible not to be impressed by the sheer grandeur and splendour and power of the natural world. David Attenborough, Planet Earth s2e1: Islands, BBC 2016
Never have those wildernesses been so fragile and so precious as they are today. ibid.