Nature on Display: This exhibit captured my attention because it is so abstract. At first glance I could clearly tell that the exhibit is the made up of replicas of jaws that had once belonged to some sort of marine animal. Also under the dimly lit hallway the teeth appeared to almost be glowing. I found the design of this exhibit to be appealing due to the highly real characteristics of the teeth. In viewing this exhibit I learned that there are many variations of creatures on this Earth that the majority of us may never come into contact with, but have great impacts on in how we manipulate and explore the environment that we all live in. If the teeth had not been so large and formidable and viable to see through a glass this exhibit may not have caught my attention the way that it did. I also would not have been able to see the teeth to scale had it been through any other medium and would not have been able to fully appreciate the diversity and influence of life on Earth. I found this experience at the museum to also be the most enjoyable because within this exhibit I didn't have to stop and examine anything or be cautious of where I stepped. The exhibit was just there and it was breath taking. All I had to do was stand and admire the exhibit in awe in order to learn from it.
Nature and Ethics: Yes, The Natural History Museum's Butterfly Rain forest provided me the opportunity to experience nature as a member of a "biotic community" rather than a "conqueror of land". As soon as the first door into The Butterfly Rain Forest shut behind me I felt like I was entering their domain. The butterflies controlled where I stepped, where I looked and where I went. I had to be extremely cautious as to not swat at anything that may have tickled my neck and of where I stepped. I was no longer my own center of focus in this new environment. Instead the butterflies were my main focus. I sensed that they also knew that they would not be harmed and that we were there to see them in their natural environment. The butterflies flew everywhere with out fear of being stepped on or swatted, unlike most other insects. I felt that this was an amazing experience because so often nature is made to conform to the comforts of man, but in the Butterfly Rain Forest man was made to live in harmony with and not manipulate nature. The people around me were also very cautious of the butterflies and how their actions effected them. Everyone seem almost awe struck at the personal interactions with nature that occurred. We were all allowed to connect with nature within this exhibit because all of our attention was solely on nature or the butterflies floating around us, instead of locked away in a case somewhere. Yes, this experience definitely instilled an ethical responsibility to nature in me. For the first time in my life I realized this planet was not just a playground for humans and that we need to learn how to more adequately share it with all the living creatures that exist within it. Nature does not exists to comfort man, man exists to live within nature.
Nature and the Human Spirit: The Natural History Museum allows us to take a step out of our ordinary lives by exposing us to the history and nature of what we hold dear or pass, but don't even notice. This exhibit in particular aided me in appreciating the majesty and mystery of nature because if I were to pass those same shells on the beach I probably wouldn't even think twice about them. However, these particular shells were used by some of my Native American ancestors as exports to trade for foreign commodities. This exemplified that nature is all around us and will continue to evolve and flourish long after we are gone. We probably will never have a perfect understanding of how nature and all creatures will evolve or what they may evolve into later. Our lives are minuscule and temporary in the grand scheme of things, but nature lives on and evolves when left alone. The very seashells here could've served my ancestors the same purpose as the ones I see on the beach. The true majesty of nature is that it tells the story of mankind and gives us an idea of where and who we came from.