John Muir, Naturalist and Writer, 1914, Feast Day April 22nd
Painted on exposed Cherry Wood.
“John Muir is someone who I think exemplified Jesus’ desire for people to “Consider the lilies of the field.” One Friend of Muir’s said it could often take John an hour to walk ten feet in the woods.A plant or bug, a mysterious track, could leave Muir transfixed. A lover of trees, birds, geology and all of creation, a wonderful story teller and inspirer, John’s publisher told him to stop using the word ‘glorious’ because it came up so often in his writings. He would often exclaim, “The World is big, I simply want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.” I left the Gold off of John Muir’s Icon when I read these words by Muir:
“These temple-destroyers, devotees of ravaging commercialism, seem to have a perfect contempt for Nature, and instead of lifting their eyes to the God of the mountains, lift them to the Almighty Dollar.[…] for no holier temple has ever been consecrated by the heart of man.” — from The Yosemite (1912)
John fought for years to stop the damming of Hetch hetchy Valley in California. A Valley he considered one of the most beautiful in all of America. He eventually lost that fight which left him in much grief until his death in 1914, but still, John saw that everything in the world was connected, that the way we are in the world and the way we use things is of the utmost religious/spiritual significance. If one wanted to visit a holy place, for John one need only to stand still, to be present to a place long enough to truly see that the entire world is saturated in a ‘gloriousness’ that no man will ever re-create.”