Monday, October 3, 2016

#277 / A Web In The Woods

Gerard Helferich has written a review of three different books praising trees. I recommend the review, which is quite short, and which carries the title, "The Wood-Wide Web." What I loved most was this statement, based on Helferich's reading of The Hidden Life of Trees:

It may surprise you ... that trees have a full social life. In a natural forest, members of the same species communicate via interconnected root systems ... to share nutrients and warn of drought, pests and other threats. When under attack by insects, trees release chemicals into the air to alert their neighbors. Oaks respond to these signals by pumping bitter tannin through their veins to discourage prowling predators....

Life, that great mystery, is everywhere present in the World of Nature. 

There is a constant conversation there that we don't hear. 

Though our ears are closed to it, there is a society of all living things, of every kind, that talks and plans. These are voices to which we rarely listen, the voices of the trees, and the voices of all the other living things. We don't pay much attention to the World of Nature, to the realm from which all life proceeds. 

We are preoccupied with what we do, with all our projects in the human world. We are besotted with the works of our own hands.

With our attention so misdirected, our senses are deaf to the symphony of life.

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