BACK TO THE Nature Florida Museum of Natural History

NATURE ON DISPLAY

In this photo, I am inside the Butterfly Rainforest exhibition. This exhibition is unique from others because the nature on display was not behind the bars or framed inside the glass windows. I could explore through the forest and felt integrated into the nature. Being surrounded by green plants, fresh air, and beautiful creatures allowed me to forget about my current concerns such as finance, academics, and relationship. Unlike me, the butterflies seemed so peaceful in their natural habitat.

NATURE AND ETHICS

In this exhibition, I traveled back in time to see the lifestyle of Native Americans. This was the beginning of the human settlement in Florida. Most of the Native Americans still choose to live with the "biotic community" rather than to "conquer the land" (Leopold). In the contrast, people today take advantage of the nature for economic use. As a result, infinite numbers of plastics, chemicals, and waste products are produced each day and many animals are in danger of becoming extinct. By re-enacting the nature in the ancient times of Florida, the visitors are able to see what they have missed and to feel responsible for the consequence of their actions. If men do not make effort to preserve the environment, they may see polar bears displayed as an extinct animal in few hundred years.

NATURE AND THE HUMAN SPIRIT

The museum has an exhibition of extinct and sea animals. The fossils are arranged together which allows the visitors to see the life size of these animals. In the "sea," I felt as if I were underwater because of the display of blown-up sized sea creatures. The lighting helped to create this effect. In this part of the museum, I was in a different universe.

Soon I realized that universe is vast and that I am a speck in this universe. In the movie, Horton Hears Who, Mayor is like a tiny ant to Horton. To Mayor, the Whoville is everything until he realizes that there is life beyond outside of his town. I am like Mayor. Sometimes, I am very foolish to recognize that I am not the center of the universe. There is life beyond Gainesville and in some parts of the world, young women does not have the opportunity to get education. I am very thankful for having shelter, clothes, family, and access to healthcare and education.

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