Book Notes: Desert Solitaire

There’re a few themes of Abbey’s work Desert Solitaire:

  1. Abbey believes that there’s a disconnect between modern society and the wilderness
  2. He also points out the wonders of the desert and how it is able to capture the mind of people due to its harsh conditions.
  3. There’s a deep rooted hatred/ dislike towards industry due to the duress that it has put on the environment.

Abbey has a strong connection with the desert. Its as if he feels more welcomed when he is alone in the desert. He sees the world through a different lens. This was interesting to see Abbey’s take on the world and how he sees the world from the outside.

  1. A treasure not in money, but in Beauty.” Pg. 61
  2. A man on foot, on horseback or on a bicycle will see more, feel more, enjoy more in one mile than the motorized tourists can in a hundred miles.” Pg. 54
  3. Wilderness. The word itself is music.” Pg. 166
  4. Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread. The civilization which destroys what little remains of the wild, the spare, the original, is cutting itself off from its origins and betraying the principle of civilization itself.” Pg. 169
  5. If industrial man continues to multiply his numbers and expand his operations he will succeed in his apparent intention, to seal himself off from the natural and isolate himself within a synthetic prison of his own making.” Pg. 169

What is it about our character that makes us as humans so destructive towards our surrounding environment?

Why do we have to exploit the natural beauties of our world for our own benefits?


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