What do we find when we pay attention to the natural world around us? That everything is interconnected. From minerals and microbes up through herbs and trees to coyotes and cows and humans, we’re all exchanging energy and matter in an ever-flowing dance timed to seasonal cycles and choreographed by eons of collective evolution.
Air passes through plants as they photosynthesize and through animals as they breathe, filtering back and forth between its vital forms.
Water trickles and pours across the landscape, hydrating organisms along its path, only to evaporate and blow back in as fresh rainfall.
Nutrients in our food become living flesh, which in turn passes on so fungi and other decomposers can return it to the soil for plants to take up anew.
The ecosystem serves as a renewable source of the basic ingredients of life. Remember our bodies’ blessed trinity: oxygen, water, food. There is no way for the human race to live without these, nor is there any way for the human race to obtain them outside these natural cycles. The land around us isn’t merely a scenic backdrop for society, it’s the wellspring of all our sustenance.