My friends and I visited the Florida Museum of Natural History on January 23rd, 2017. Although I love nature, I enjoy being surrounded by it and not looking at it from the other side of a glass case, so needless to say I was not particularly excited to go. However, it ended up being a magnificent experience. I think what made it stand out for me was how interactive the exhibits and displays felt. The museum made it feel as though I was a part of every single display and not a mere observer.
Nature on Display
The Florida Museum of Natural History most definitely allows you to immerse yourself in nature. The exhibit that managed to capture my attention the most, was the Butterfly exhibit. Rather than looking in from the outside I got to become part of the exhibit and take in all its wonder. I was close enough to see every lively color that appeared to be meticulously painted on the wings of each butterfly. I was close enough to watch them glide through the air, and congregate in beautiful clusters of color and movement. I think what was so important about this exhibit is that I learned to appreciate the small things in nature that I usually take for granted. It reminded me that we live on an incredible planet, and that I should take the time to admire its beautiful intricacies more often.
Nature and Ethics
There were many exhibits throughout the museum that emphasized our impact on the environment and provided suggestions as to how to improve our methods of conservation. In addition, many exhibits prompted the loving and respecting of the land we inhabit. But for me the best one was the exhibit of the Native Americans, specifically the display on Calusa Fishing that is photographed here. I was so intrigued by how the Calusa's livelihood depended on the resources provided from the land. I think our society is so distracted that we sometimes we forget that everything we have and everything we know in one way or another comes from the Earth. The Calusa on the other hand were so dependent on and in touch with nature, that they respected it. Instead of seeing the Earth as something to claim or appropriate, they saw it as a place they were lucky to live on. They considered that they lived alongside all living things, only taking what they needed to survive and never more. Our society has come a long way in many aspects, but I think we have taken steps backward when it comes to how we treat our home. This exhibit really made me realize how little I thank the Earth for our existence.