Celebrating Birds and Birders

Hummingbird

From Sam Keen’s little book named simply, Sightings.

What makes birders of the world unique is their propensity for celebration. In an age in which the major world religions are marked by serious internal struggles between fundamentalists and progressives, birders are devoted to a single-minded pursuit of joyful revelations of what is beautiful and sacred.  Their focus is aesthetic, rather that dogmatic or moral.  They belong to the uncomplicated, lighthearted, religious type that the American philosopher William James called, “the once-born.”  Life is a gift to be enjoyed is their guiding maxim.  The beauty of winged creatures leads them from sensual enjoyment to reverence for life.  In the wide spectrum of religious types, they are celebrants, practitioners of a theology of nature.

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