“Our physical and mental health, productivity, and well-being continue to rely on our connections to nature, even as our world becomes increasingly fabricated and constructive.” That’s the thesis behind Stephen Kellert’s new book Birthright: People and Nature in the Modern World. Kellert argues that our need for nature extends beyond our need for the basic resources that allow us to maintain our high standard of living. To enjoy life, we need nature to clear our minds so that we can lead productive, happy lives.
“Contemporary society is justifiably proud of its standard of living,” says Kellert, “Still, to be successful and sustainable, not just materially but also psychologically and spiritually, these achievements must rest on a bedrock of positive and nurturing relationship to the natural world. He argues that our capacity to think, communicate, create, problem solve and form meaningful personal identities depends on fostering a connection to the outdoors.
Aside from working to understand the fundamental connection between humans and nature, Kellert is known for his innovative ideas in urban development and educational that can bring us more in contact with nature. Because, as a species, humanity evolved as such a part of the natural world, Kellert and other experts believe that we need to cultivate this connection in order to maintain our health, happiness, creativity and productivity.
As an innovator in outdoor adventure education for the past 41 years, Wilderness Ventures brings young people into the natural world on immersive outdoor experiences through the greatest environments on the planet. Our student groups backpack the most stunning wilderness areas of the Rocky Mountains, Alaska and the Pacific Northwest; rock climb the majestic peaks of the Tetons and the North Cascades; whitewater raft thrilling rivers; and develop a lifelong connection to the outdoors through shared, magical experience. Our amazing outdoor adventures are a chance for young people to unplug and connect with themselves, their environment, their peers and their own best potential. That opportunity is as important today as it was during our first summer adventure in 1973.