Hope in Nature = Beauty

The COVID-19 pandemic, climate and species extinction crises and the stress of the political divide over the last decade in the U.S. has led many to what might be thought of a lockdown of hopelessness. To maintain a hopeful perspective in these circumstances carries the risk of seeming naïve. Science makes clear that humankind is on a trajectory to end civilization, as we know it. As of this writing, 2020, we have but eight years to solve the species extinction and climate crises. Once any number of “tipping-points” is reached, planetary decline is inevitable.

The more attention paid to the climate and species extinction crises the greater the need of a rational basis for not giving up. And the risks of the climate and extinction crises are exacerbated by the pandemic. For those of us in our 70s, we’ll be dealing with climate, extinction and Covid-19 for the rest of our lives. It never occurred to any of us that the final decades of our time on Earth would be clouded with such overriding seriousness.

As the photograph on the right of the Pitchfork Ranch’s One-seed juniper tree illustrates, nature offers a rational basis for not giving up, rather, nature offers unending illustrations of why hope is logical, intelligent and commonsensical, a constructive outlook on firm ground. Like nature, hope reflects resilience, perseverance and a conviction to live. In the case of humankind, we would add civic virtue, an interest is serving the greater good of the commons.

For 27 illustrations of hope shown by the beauty of lone trees persisting in nature against unimaginable odds, click here.