Unanswered Question: Do city people know what they’re missing?

I’d gotten a lot more rest than usual lately over the long weekend. We each have a personal quota so when my dog got me up at 2:00 am, I had a few hours of wide ‘awakeness’.
My thoughts started where they usually do with a stream of experiences I’ve had inspiring awe with the wonders of Mother Nature. Then I considered all the ‘urbanized’ people who might not have witnessed nature as I have had the privilege to do.
Oh, the places I went from there!

Much of the discontent, crime, and hopelessness, seems concentrated in urban areas these days. Why? People are people and I thought we needed the same things. Maybe we most urgently do.
My stream of consciousness eventually brought me to a profound (not necessarily correct) conclusion.

The over domestication of human beings is dangerous to their happiness and well-being.

The same thing has happened to animals. Wild animals can fend for themselves, and understand the natural world, but dogs, cattle, and parakeets, are at a terrible survival disadvantage since they’ve been kept for so long.

I’ve known some ‘city’ people who have visited places that were natural for the first time and been overwhelmed by all the things they didn’t know and didn’t even know they didn’t know.

There’s a rhythm in the natural world that human beings can, and IMHO should, know about.
One in particular is the awareness of a ‘line’, more like a pause, between night and day. Having tented and camped in forests throughout my life, I’ve witnessed it.
There’s a time about an hour before dawn when the summer night sounds pause for about 2 to 5 minutes. Crickets grow quiet, and owls stop hooting, leaving a dramatic silent pause before the morning birds joyously sing greetings to the new day. Witnessing THAT can change a person. The recognition of amazing forces at work that we humans cannot take credit for is humbling!

That pause was my personal choice for the most magical natural event (seconded by meteor showers) but there are countless others. I have no doubt human beings are meant to be part of those natural rhythms too. But how would city people even know about them? Their surroundings are removed and artificial in comparison to those who have access to the natural world.
I wonder if those seemingly lost people are starving for something they don’t even know exists. Could they be feeling incomplete? Might the lack of any natural connection be adding to the growing complaints about life having ‘no meaning’?

Well, at 3:30 this morning, my answer to those questions was “yes”.

My overall question is “Do those city people know what they’re missing?”

13 thoughts on “Unanswered Question: Do city people know what they’re missing?

  1. Interesting. My daughter has a skylight in the guest room, and I fell asleep Saturday night to the pitter patter of rain all around me ~ it was very soothing…

  2. I don’t think city people know what they are missing. They prefer comfortable routine, infrastructure that works and well stocked consumerism. I’m speaking from experience as someone who has lived in large cities for 80% of my life. The saddest thing about city life is the lack of visible stars in the sky. Viewing the myriad of stars at night gives one perspective on their place in the universe and how fragile our existence really is.

  3. True blood city folks don’t think about what they might be missing from the countryside because unless they venture into the wild for longer than a walk in the park, then how would they even get it?

    Over here we country folks have a name for wannabee countryfolks from the city – we call them roosters. Everytime they come here for a country break they complain – mud on the roads, vixens calling at night, chicken farms smelling, too quiet, too dark, not enough city life in the village ……

    Roosters have no concept what life over the fence is like and because it’s too slow, they don’t even need to think about it! 🙂

    1. Bingo! I’d feel sorry for the ignorance and disconnectedness of the ‘roosters’ if they didn’t try to impose it on the rest of us. As much as I should be tolerant, those people can take “a long walk on a short pier!” 😉

  4. I live in the city, but where I live, we get a lot of birds, there are trees outside my house, and tons of birds swarm in them, its magical in the early morning, listening to them!

    1. I reside in a small city nestled within wooded hills. My grandparents owned a dairy farm in the actual country. Our family loved fishing and spent many summer vacations in the wild. Actually, I grew up on a dead-end street that was flanked by a hilltop forest. You can reside technically in a city, and still live a natural life. I had a bobcat in my backyard last Spring and have watched black bears in the woods a few hundred yards from my current home. As for birds, they make every morning a miracle! I’m totally with you. Thanks.

  5. I have a personal mantra: Cities are meant to be visited, not lived in.

    I feel my anxiety levels slowly rising if I’m in a city for too long – sleeping over somewhere multiple days. I feel more relaxed again when I’m back out in the country.

    I do think many city folk have no clue what they’re missing. I invited a city friend from university to sleep over one time, drove home down the country roads, and she started freaking out asking if the road was closed and we had driven past the closed sign without realizing it, because there were no other cars on the road. She didn’t understand when I said that it was a normal amount of traffic for that road.

    1. Your comment is much appreciated, Nicole. I wonder if those city inclinations to ‘vote away’ our freedoms are just people who don’t know what freedom looks like. Thanks! ❤

  6. My answer is in the post itself, ” life having some meaning”, not a worldly metaphor though.
    On a worldly front, do cities have such a clearer sky to gaze on or nature in its beautiful form?
    Both ways very pondering…. Thanks a lot.

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