The ‘wild’ delights and terrifies us, conjuring in one organic breath raw nature in her elemental glory and savage beasts lurking in the wastes awaiting their chance to pounce.
Serengeti lion at a fresh kill
Photo by M Murray
But what really is the wild? Is it something we should continue to civilize until it is cast into the history books or might it be something we depend upon a little more each year just to retain our humanity? In this posting I introduce two recent publications which explore the meaning of the wild for us personally and the implications if we do nothing about it.
The first is a conservation article Wild Pathways of Inclusive Conservation which for a few weeks can be accessed here. It frames a wild revival strategy in four questions:
- What do we mean by the wild?
- Why should humans pursue wild-life conservation?
- If they do, what pathways lead to the wild?
- What kinds of outcomes result from different conservation strategies?
The second is a travel book, A Wild Call, which tells the story of my quest to find an old wooden ketch, sail her to Scotland and make a solo passage to St Kilda beyond the Outer Hebrides. It is a search for personal freedom in my father’s country, the story of a star-crossed relationship and an adventure in a small boat on a big sea. This first advance review captures something of its essence.
Author’s boat ‘Molio’ in sheltered pool on Harris
About Martyn Murray
I fell in love with nature when I turned twenty-one camping under Acacias in East Africa, surrounded by giraffe and zebra with my nape hair raised by the distant roaring of lions. I went on to work for fifty years in Africa, Europe and Asia as an ecologist and conservation consultant. A few years ago I moved to the Isle of Lismore to pursue my passion for reconnecting people with the natural world. My first book, The Storm Leopard
, is a journey across Africa and into the heart of the environmental crisis. My second, Origin of Species: Bite-Sized
, contains the essence of Charles Darwin's greatest work – his theory of evolution by natural selection – in a text that is 15% the length of the original. The third, Beyond the Hebrides
, is the story of a sea voyage in an old leaking boat and on how to keep personal freedom alive. I am currently working on a fourth which is about the global collapse of the natural world. Its working title is, In This Together
. It challenges us all over our current connections with nature. More details are on my website, www.martynmurray.com.
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Well done Mart. One more and you’ll have overtaken Pirsig. 😉
Thanks, but no one is going to overtake that guy on his Super Hawk – out on the edge of human consciousness – still a great guy to be inspired by 😎