Nature on Display
Unfortunately, I don’t feel as though the Natural History Museum allowed me to experience nature in the way that Leopold recommended. Although, I absolutely felt an appreciation for the beauty of nature as I traversed the halls of the museum, particularly when I walked through the museum’s butterfly garden, I never truly saw myself as part of the biotic community. I don’t think I was ever able to ditch the notion that as people we are separate from nature. Other visitors at the museum reacted to the museum’s exhibits in different ways. Some people were awed by the displays, but there were quite a few people who didn’t seem that engaged with the museum. Truly, most of the people I saw seemed in a rush to get the information they needed to complete this assignment.
In my opinion, the Natural History Museum didn’t really allow people to connect with nature. Rather, the museum allowed people to observe nature. The one part of the museum that really allowed people to interact and immerse themselves in nature was the butterfly rain forest. The forest did this by letting people surround themselves with nature and insects. In the museum’s regular exhibits, I felt as though I was immersed in a sort of “false nature”. I don’t think that my visit to the museum instilled in me any ethical responsibility to the environment in the way Leopold describes. Of course, I’ve always felt that we all have an obligation to preserve the natural world.
Nature and the Human Spirit