Saturday, August 25, 2012

Discovery and Natural Wonder

Wind Canyon  10 Aug 2012
Coming upon a natural wonder, it's human nature to consider the notion of discovery.
Who was the first to witness this?
We romanticize discovery. But what is the nature of true discovery?

We imagine ourselves the fortuitous first-discoverer, but perhaps we overlook an important aspect of discovery.
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes. ― Marcel Proust
We sow the seeds of discovery by adopting Beginner's Mind. Discovery begins when we see the world through fresh eyes.
It is a wholesome and necessary thing for us to turn again to the earth and in the contemplation of her beauties to know the sense of wonder and humility.
Rachel Carson, excerpt from The Sense of Wonder
We cultivate the probability of discovery when we shed the baggage of expectations to meet the world with openness.
When I am a beginner, everything is discovery.

Tower Fall

Year after year, I discover and re-discover natural wonders. I fancy myself an explorer seeing things for the first time. I wonder about these natural wonders. I romanticize the history of these sacred places.
Cherish these natural wonders, cherish the natural resources, cherish the history and romance as a sacred heritage, for your children and your children's children.Theodore Roosevelt
Tower Fall is one such natural wonder I have romanticized.

Six days into the Yellowstone Expedition of 1870, Lieutenant Gustavus Doane describes Tower Fall in his journal:
The great curiosity of the locality, however, is the Tower Fall of Hot Spring Creek, where that stream is precipitated, in one unbroken body, from an amygdaloid ledge, a sheer descent of 115 feet, into a deep gorge, joining the Yellowstone a few hundred yards below. ― Lt. Doane
Tower Fall. Sketched by Private Moore. The Yellowstone Expedition of 1870.
Lt. Doane's excellent journal writing often tempers his delight and exhilaration with the analytic detachment expected of his station, but of Tower Fall he waxes poetic:
Nothing can be more chastely beautiful than this lovely cascade, hidden away in the dim light of overshadowing rocks and woods, its very voice hushed to a low murmur, unheard at the distance of a few hundred yards. Thousands might pass by within a half mile and not dream of its existence; but once seen, it passes to the list of most pleasant memories. ― Lt. Doane