Tree Talk

It ain’t easy to talk about trees, let alone talking about nature!

But it IS easy to go to extremes and come forward as either a neo-romantic tree hugger or as a dry stick focusing solely on calculating timber value and CO2 emissions .

According to Aksel Haaning the Western approach to nature is rooted in Christianity, which traditionally has separated man and God from nature. Being religious is a matter between man and God - NOT including nature.

And – contrary to what you might think – the mechanical/scientific world view, which arose in the 17th and 18th centuries, and the Christian world view are not opposites, but they go hand in hand when it comes to fulfilling a shared mission: to drain nature of its spirit!

According to Aksel Haaning this attitude has prohibited modern Western man in developing a spiritual relationship to nature, which again means that we don’t have an up-to-date language when speaking about nature. Our vocabulary and our way of talking about nature is out-dated, antiquated and lacking vigour.

Recently, I encountered this problem when fumbling for words in an attempt to explain to our local newspaper WHY I think it is necessary to spare a little wood called Byskoven ("The City Forest"). I don’t speak as a tree hugger or as a rational tree counter – I am trying to speak another language: