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Nature hides her secret because of her essential loftiness, but not by means of ruse.

ALBERT EINSTEIN, remark made during Einstein's visit to Princeton University, May 1921

Nature is often hidden; sometimes overcome; seldom extinguished.

FRANCIS BACON, "Of Nature in Men," Essays

Nature flies from the infinite, for the infinite is unending or imperfect, and Nature ever seeks to amend.

ARISTOTLE, On the Generation of Animals

Nature, the vicar of the Almighty Lord.

GEOFFREY CHAUCER, "Parliament of Fowls"

Nature is astonishingly prolific, but it is a prodigal process going nowhere special, sponsored by destruction and suffering. What is wonderful and inspiring is the possibility of infinite variation and exquisite adaptation; what is daunting and terrible is the cost. Nature is abundant and unremittingly cruel from, as it were, a personal point of view.

ADAM PHILLIPS, Darwin's Worms On Life Stories and Death Stories

We cannot command nature except by obeying her.

FRANCIS BACON, Novum Organum

Nature does nothing uselessly.


Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed.

HENRY ADAMS, The Education of Henry Adams

What human beings seek to learn from nature is how to use it to dominate wholly both it and human beings. Nothing else counts.

THEODOR W. ADORNO, Dialectic of Enlightenment

We know great Nature's pow'r,
Mother of things, whose vast unbounded sway
From the deep centre all around extends
Wide to the flaming barriers of the world.
We feel her power; we strive not to repress
(Vainly repress'd, or to deformity)
Her lawful growth: ours be the task alone
To check her rude excrescencies, to prune
Her wanton overgrowth, and where she strays
In uncouth shapes, to lead her gently back,
With prudent hand, to form and better use.

JOHN ARMSTRONG, "The Oeconomy Of Love"

Thus the men whom nature's works can charm, with God himself hold converse; grow familiar, day by day, with his conceptions; act upon his plan; and form to his, the relish of their souls.

MARK AKENSIDE, The Pleasures of Imagination

Nature does at least what she can to translate into visible form the wealth of the creative formula. By the vastness of the abysses into which she penetrates, in the effort--the unsuccessful effort--to house and contain the eternal thought, we may measure the greatness of the divine mind.


If Nature built by rule and square,
Than man what wiser would she be?
What wins us is her careless care,
And sweet unpunctuality.

ALFRED AUSTIN, "Nature and the Book", At the Gate of the Convent and Other Poems

The course of Nature is the art of God.

EDWARD YOUNG, Night Thoughts

Nature insists on whatever benefits the whole.


The line of Nature is crooked ... though we dig the canal beds as straight as we can, the rivers run hither and thither in their wildness.

WILLIAM BUTLER YEATS, Ideas of Good and Evil

All nature is the temple; earth the altar.

ALPHONSE DE LAMARTINE, "Prayer", Poetical Meditations

Nature does not make leaps.

GOTTFRIED WILHELM LEIBNIZ, Nouveaux essais sur l'entendement humain

The noble simplicity in the works of nature only too often originates in the noble shortsightedness of him who observes it.


Despite our strongly felt kinship and oneness with nature, all the evidence suggests that nature doesn't care one whit about us. Tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions happen without the slightest consideration for human inhabitants.

ALAN LIGHTMAN, "Our Lonely Home in Nature", The New York Times, May 2, 2014

We reduce things to mere Nature in order that we may "conquer" them.

C. S. LEWIS, The Abolition of Man

Nature, with its fragile yet resilient magnificence, models for us what aliveness means and reminds us that we are mortal.

MARIA POPOVA, "Poetry as Protest and Sanctuary", brainpickings, April 18, 2017

All the time nature is trying to tell us things and we blur her greatness with our little thoughts, our feebleness and flesh.

JENNETTE LEE, The Symphony Play

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