153 Nature Quotes About Wilderness, the Earth, and Protecting the Environment

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Fish Creek Mountains Wilderness, Southern California
Fish Creek Mountains Wilderness, Southern California.

I try to read Nature quotes every day because they keep me focused on what really matters. In the old days, before the Industrial Revolution, people could get away with exploiting Nature’s abundant treasures. Those days are long gone. We’ve exploited Mother Nature enough; it’s time to help her rejuvenate.

This means no more digging and drilling, no more clear cutting and polluting, no more fishing and factory farming. We’ve unearthed more than our fair share of riches from this paradise that we call home, and now it’s time to give back. Now, we need to reuse what we have, upcycle and recycle, compost and garden, grow and share that which sustains life on Earth – instead of poisoning it.

It can be overwhelming – this mess we humans have made, which we now have to clean up. It’s like waking up, heads pounding from a hangover, with nausea in our bellies after a hard night of partying – only to see broken glass, carpet stains, and random debris all over the living room, that we now have to clean up.

This is why I’d like to share these quotes with you – quotes about nature, wilderness, the Earth, and protecting it – because they remind us that it’s worth every effort to do so. Wise women and men have been warning us for decades. We need to pay more attention and to act.

 

Inspirational Nature Quotes

Claude Monet Quotes About Nature

Claude Monet in his garden at Giverny, 1917.
Claude Monet in his garden at Giverny, 1917.

 

1.

“I owe perhaps becoming a painter to flowers.”
–Claude Monet

 

2.

“The richness I achieve comes from Nature, the source of my inspiration.”
–Claude Monet

 

Albert Einstein Nature Quotes

Albert Einstein in Vienna, 1921.
Albert Einstein in Vienna, 1921. He was 42 years old. Photo by Ferdinand Schmutzer.
3.

“Look deep into nature, and you will understand everything better.”
–Albert Einstein

 

4.

“The most beautiful gift of nature is that it gives one pleasure to look around and try to comprehend what we see.”
–Albert Einstein

 

Jacques Cousteau Quotes

Jacques-Yves Cousteau on the Calypso
Jacques-Yves Cousteau on the Calypso.
5.

“We forget that the water cycle and the life cycle are one.”
–Jacques-Yves Cousteau

 

6.

“People protect what they love.”
–Jacques-Yves Cousteau

 

7.

“The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.”
–Jacques-Yves Cousteau

 

8.

“The sea is man’s only hope. Now, as never before, the old phrase has a literal meaning: we are all in the same boat.”
–Jacques-Yves Cousteau

 

9.

“For most of history, man has had to fight nature to survive; in this century he is beginning to realize that, in order to survive, he must protect it.”
–Jacques-Yves Cousteau

 

10.

“Water and air, the two essential fluids on which all life depends, have become global garbage cans.”
–Jacques-Yves Cousteau

 

More Inspiring Nature Quotes

Spring Rain, Ibirapuera Park, São Paulo, Brazil
Spring Rain, Ibirapuera Park, São Paulo, Brazil. Photo: Sérgio Valle Duarte.
11.

“Rain is grace.”
–John Updike

 

12.

“Come forth into the light of things, let nature be your teacher.”
–William Wordsworth

 

13.

“It is not so much for its beauty that the forest makes a claim upon men’s hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air that emanation from old trees, that so wonderfully changes and renews a weary spirit.”
–Robert Louis Stevenson

 

14.

“He is richest who is content with the least, for content is the wealth of nature.”
–Socrates

 

15.

“I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night.”
–Galileo Galilei

 

16.

“If you can’t be in awe of Mother Nature, there’s something wrong with you.”
–Alex Trebek

 

17.

“Perhaps the truth depends on a walk around the lake.”
–Wallace Stevens

 

18.

“Nature gives to every time and season some beauties of its own.”
–Charles Dickens

 

19.

“Nature’s beauty is a gift that cultivates appreciation and gratitude.”
–Louie Schwartzberg

 

20.

“Nature is the art of God.”
–Dante Alighieri

 

Rachel Carson Quotes

Rachel Carson with Robert Hines
Rachel Carson and Robert Hines studying marine biology on the Atlantic coast. Date unknown.
21.

“There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature – the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter.”
–Rachel Carson

 

22.

“Those who contemplate the beauty of the Earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.”
–Rachel Carson

 

23.

“The question is whether any civilization can wage relentless war on life without destroying itself, and without losing the right to be called civilized.”
–Rachel Carson

 

24.

“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.”
–Rachel Carson

 

Ralph Waldo Emerson Nature Quotes

Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson, ~1872.
25.

“Nature always wears the colors of the spirit.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

26.

“The Earth laughs in flowers.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

27.

“Adopt the pace of nature. Her secret is patience.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

28.

“Nature never hurries. Atom by atom, little by little, she achieves her work.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

29.

“Nature is loved by what is best in us.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

30.

“I am the lover of uncontained and immortal beauty. In the wilderness, I find something more dear and connate than in streets or villages.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

31.

“In the woods, we return to reason and faith.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

32.

“In the presence of nature, a wild delight runs through the man, in spite of real sorrows.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

Henry David Thoreau Quotes About Nature

Henry David Thoreau, June 1856
Henry David Thoreau, June 1856. Portrait by Benjamin D. Maxham.
33.

“Shall I not have intelligence with the Earth? Am I not partly leaves and vegetable mold myself.”
–Henry David Thoreau

 

34.

“In the wilderness is the salvation of the world.”
–Henry David Thoreau

 

35.

“Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads.”
–Henry David Thoreau

 

36.

“Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of the Earth.”
–Henry David Thoreau

 

37.

“If a man walks in the woods for love of them half of each day, he is in danger of being regarded as a loafer; but if he spends his whole day as a speculator, shearing off those woods and making the Earth bald before her time, he is esteemed an industrious and enterprising citizen.”
–Henry David Thoreau

 

Emily Dickinson Nature Quotes

Emily Dickinson, 848.
Emily Dickinson, 1848.
38.

“How strange that nature does not knock, and yet does not intrude!”
–Emily Dickinson

 

39.

“Nature is our eldest mother; she will do no harm.”
–Emily Dickinson

 

Walt Whitman Nature Quotes

Walt Whitman
Walt Whitman, ~1863. Photo: Matthew Brady.
40.

“Now I see the secret of the making of the best persons: It is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the Earth.”
–Walt Whitman

 

41.

“I believe a leaf of grass is no less than the journey work of the stars.”
–Walt Whitman

 

42.

“Now I see the secret of making the best person: it is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the Earth.”
–Walt Whitman

 

Alice Walker Nature Quotes

Alice Walker
Alice Walker. Photo: Virginia DeBolt.
43.

“In nature, nothing is perfect and everything is perfect. Trees can be contorted, bent in weird ways, and they’re still beautiful.”
–Alice Walker

 

44.

“I understood at a very early age that in nature, I felt everything I should feel in church but never did. Walking in the woods, I felt in touch with the universe and with the spirit of the Universe.”
–Alice Walker

 

More of the Best Nature Quotes

45.

“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery – air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, ‘This is what it is to be happy.’”
–Sylvia Plath

 

46.

“My soul can find no staircase to Heaven unless it be through Earth’s loveliness.”
–Michelangelo

 

47.

“Choose only one master: Nature”
–Rembrandt

 

Frank Lloyd Wright Nature Quotes

48.

“Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.”
–Frank Lloyd Wright

 

49.

“I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.”
–Frank Lloyd Wright

 

More Nature Quotes

50.

“There is a way that nature speaks, that land speaks. Most of the time we are simply not patient enough, quiet enough, to pay attention to the story.”
–Linda Hogan

 

51.

“Nature is pleased with simplicity. And nature is no dummy.”
–Sir Isaac Newton

Lady Bird Johnson
Lady Bird Johnson, LBJ Ranch, Stonewall, Texas, 1978. Painting by Aaron Shikler.
52.

“Where flowers bloom, so does hope.”
–Lady Bird Johnson

 

53.

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”
–Lao Tzu

 

54.

“Look at a tree, a flower, a plant. Let your awareness rest upon it. How still they are, how deeply rooted in being.”
–Eckhart Tolle

 

55.

“Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach of us more than we can ever learn from books.”
–John Lubbock

 

56.

“Like music and art, love of nature is a common language that can transcend political or social boundaries.”
–Jimmy Carter

 

57.

“Just living is not enough. One must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.”
–Hans Christian Andersen

 

58.

“The poetry of the Earth is never dead.”
–John Keats

 

59.

“In all things of nature, there is something of the marvelous.”
–Aristotle

 

60.

“I can find God in nature, in animals, in birds and the environment.”
–Pat Buckley

 

61.

“I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.”
–John Burroughs

Jane Austen
Jane Austen, ~1810.
62.

“To sit in the shade on a fine day and look upon the verdant green hills is the most perfect refreshment.”
–Jane Austin

 

63.

“Nature is less expensive than therapy.”
–Unknown

 

64.

“Butterflies are self-propelled flowers.”
–Robert A. Heinlein

 

65.

“We do not see nature with our eyes, but with our understandings and our hearts.”
–William Hazlett

 

66.

“Love is a chain of love as nature is a chain of life.”
–Truman Capote

 

67.

“In wilderness, I sense the miracle of life, and behind it, our scientific accomplishments fade to trivia.
–Charles Lindbergh

 

68.

“Spring is nature’s way of saying, ‘Let’s party!’”
–Robin Williams

 

Vincent Van Gogh Quotes About Nature

Vincent van Gogh
Vincent van Gogh, Spring 1887. Self portrait.
69.

“I have nature and art and poetry, and if that is not enough, what is enough?”
–Vincent Van Gogh

 

70.

“If you truly love nature, you will find beauty everywhere.”
–Vincent Van Gogh

 

More Nature Quotes

71.

“There is pleasure in the pathless woods. There is rapture on the lonely shore. There is society where none intrudes, by the deep sea and music in its roar. I love not man the less, but Nature more.”
–Lord Byron

 

72.

“The goal of life is to make your heartbeat match the beat of the universe, to match your nature with Nature.”
–Joseph Campbell

 

73.

“Every flower is a soul blossoming in nature.”
–Gérard De Nerval

 

74.

“Mother Nature speaks in a language understood within the peaceful mind of the sincere observer.”
–Radhanath Swami

 

75.

“The world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful.”
–e. e. cummings

 

76.

“I think that I shall never see a poem lovely as a tree.”
–Joyce Kilmer

 

77.

“I believe the world is incomprehensibly beautiful – an endless prospect of magic and wonder.”
–Ansel Adams

 

Wilderness Quotes

John Muir Quotes About Nature and Wilderness

John Muir, 1907.
John Muir, 1907.
78.

“The mountains are calling, and I must go.”
–John Muir

 

79.

“In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.”
–John Muir

 

80.

“The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.”
–John Muir

 

81.

“When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.”
–John Muir

 

82.

“Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul.”
–John Muir

 

83.

“Going to the mountains is going home.”
–John Muir

 

84.

“Most people are on the world, not in it.”
–John Muir

 

85.

“And into the forest I go to lose my mind and find my soul.”
–John Muir

 

86.

“In God’s wildness lies the hope of the world.”
–John Muir

 

87.

“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.”
–John Muir

 

88.

“Society speaks, and all men listen; mountains speak, and wise men listen.”
–John Muir

 

89.

“Wilderness is a necessity. There must be places for human beings to satisfy their souls.”
–John Muir

 

Edward Abbey Quotes

90.

“The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders.”
–Edward Abbey

 

91.

“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.”
–Edward Abbey

 

92.

“Love of wilderness is more than a hunger for what is always beyond reach. It is also an expression of loyalty to the Earth, the Earth which bore us and sustains us, the only home we shall ever know, the only paradise we ever need if only we had the eyes to see.”
–Edward Abbey

 

93.

“Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit.”
–Edward Abbey

 

94.

“Nature is indifferent to our love, but never unfaithful.”
–Edward Abbey

 

95.

“We need the possibility of escape as surely as we need hope.”
–Edward Abbey

 

96.

“Why this cult of wilderness? Because we like the taste of freedom; because we like the smell of danger.”
–Edward Abbey

 

Jon Krakauer Quotes

Jon Krakauer, 2009.
Jon Krakauer, 2009. Photo: Devon Christopher Adams.
97.

“The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences.”
–Jon Krakauer

 

98.

“I now walk into the wild.”
–Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild

 

99.

“The thing that is most beautiful about Antarctica for me is the light. It’s like no other light on Earth, because the air is so free of impurities. You get drugged by it, like when you listen to one of your favorite songs. The light there is a mood-enhancing substance.”
–Jon Krakauer

 

100.

“The way to Everest is not a Yellow Brick Road.”
–Jon Krakauer

 

101.

“I think part of the appeal of Antarctica is experiencing some sort of power, the forces of the natural world.”
–Jon Krakauer

 

More Inspirational Quotes About the Wilderness

102.

“Mountains are not stadiums where I satisfy my ambition to achieve, they are the cathedrals where I practice my religion.”
–Anatoli Boukreev

 

103.

“To me, wilderness is where the flow of wildness is essentially uninterrupted by technology. Without wilderness the world is a cage.”
–David Brower

 

104.

“We must go beyond textbooks, go out into the bypaths and untrodden depths of the wilderness and travel and explore and tell the world the glories of our journey.”
–John Hope Franklin

 

105.

“The wilderness is a place that every believer has to experience to be molded for their divine purpose.”
–E’yen a. Gardner

 

106.

“The wilderness is healing, a therapy for the soul.”
–Nicholas Kristof

 

107.

“When we heal the Earth, we heal ourselves.”
–David Orr

 

108.

“In the wilderness, we experience the faithfulness of God.”
–Lailah Gifty Akita

 

109.

“The wilderness is a place of rest – not in the sense of being motionless, for the lure, after all, is to move, to round the next bend. The rest comes in the isolation from distractions, in the slowing of the daily centrifugal forces that keep us off balance.”
–David Douglas

 

110.

“Wilderness gave us knowledge. It made us human. We came from here. Perhaps that is why so many of us feel a strong bond to this land called Serengeti; it is the land of our youth.”
–Boyd Norton

 

111.

“Without wilderness, we will eventually lose the capacity to understand America. Our drive, our ruggedness, our unquenchable optimism and zeal and élan go back to the challenges of the untrammeled wilderness.”
–Harvey Broome

 

112.

“The wilderness is a place of an encounter with the creator.”
–Lailah Gifty Akita

 

Earth Quotes

113.

“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need, but not every man’s greed.”
–Mahatma Gandhi

 

114.

“Forget not that the Earth delights to feel your bare feet and the wind longs to play with your hair.”
–Khalil Gibran

 

115.

“The Earth is what we all have in common.”
–Wendell Berry

 

116.

“Love the world as your own self, then you can truly care for all things.”
–Lao Tzu

 

William  Shakespeare Earth and Nature Quotes

117.

“The Earth has music for those who listen.”
–William Shakespeare

 

118.

“One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.”
–William Shakespeare

 

Environmental Protection Quotes

119.

“I really wonder what gives us the right to wreck this poor planet of ours.”
–Kurt Vonnegut

 

120.

“I think when a surfer becomes a surfer, it’s almost like an obligation to be an environmentalist at the same time.”
–Kelly Slater

 

121.

“I believe the American people care a lot about the environment.”
–Robert Redford

 

122.

“A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.”
–Aldo Leopold

 

123.

“Wilderness is harder and harder to find these days on this beautiful planet, and we’re abusing our planet to the point of almost no return.”
–Betty White

 

124.

“The first rule of sustainability is to align with natural forces, or at least not try to defy them.”
–Paul Hawken

 

125.

“Destroying rainforest for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal.”
–E.O. Wilson

 

126.

“Something will have gone out of us as a people if we ever let the remaining wilderness be destroyed. We simply need that wild country available to us, even if we never do more than drive to its edge and look in.”
–Wallace Stegner

 

Theodore Roosevelt Nature and Environment Quotes

127.

“Leave it as it is. The ages have been at work on it and man can only mar it.”
–Theodore Roosevelt

 

128.

“There are no words that can tell the hidden spirit of the wilderness, that can reveal its mystery, its melancholy and its charm.”
–Theodore Roosevelt

 

Native American Quotes About Nature

129.

“In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations.”
–Unknown, Iroquois Proverb

 

130.

“One does not sell the Earth upon which the people walk.”
–Crazy Horse, Lakota Sioux Nation

 

131.

“We must protect the forests for our children, grandchildren, and children – yet to be born. We must protect the forests for those who can’t speak for themselves, such as the birds, animals, fish, and trees.”
–Qwatsinas, Nuxalk Nation

 

132.

“Take nothing but memories, leave nothing but footprints!”
–Chief Si ahl, Duwamish and Suquamish Nations

 

Chief Seattle Quotes

Chief Seattle, 1864.
133.

“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.”
–Chief Seattle, Duwamish and Suquamish Nations

 

134.

“When the Earth is sick, the animals will begin to disappear. When that happens, the warriors of the rainbow will come to save them.”
–Chief Seattle, Duwamish and Suquamish Nations

 

135.

“All things share the same breath – the beast, the tree, the man… The air shares its spirit with all the life it supports.”
–Chief Seattle

 

136.

“Humans merely share the Earth. We can only protect the land, not own it.”
–Chief Seattle

 

137.

“Treat the Earth with reverence. It was not given to us by our parents; it was loaned to us by our children.”
–Unknown, Native American Proverb

 

138.

“Teach us to walk the soft Earth as relatives to all that live.”
–Sioux Prayer

 

139.

“The Holy Land is everywhere”
–Black Elk, Lakota Sioux Nation

 

140.

“The Great Spirit is in all things, he is in the air we breathe. The Great Spirit is our Father, but the Earth is our Mother. She nourishes us, that which we put into the ground she returns to us.”
–Big Thunder, Wabanaki Algonquin Nation

 

141.

“Walk lightly in the spring; Mother Earth is pregnant.”
– Unknown, Kiowa Nation Proverb

 

Chief Joseph Quotes

Chief Joseph
Chief Joseph, 1902.
142.

“The earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it.”
–Chief Joseph

 

143.

“We live, we die, and like the grass and trees, renew ourselves from the soft Earth of the grave. Stones crumble and decay, faiths grow old and they are forgotten, but new beliefs are born. The faith of the villages is dust now… but it will grow again… like the trees.”
–Chief Joseph, Nez Perce Nation

 

144.

“I love the land of winding waters more than all the rest of the world. A man who would not love his father’s grave is worse than a wild animal.”
–Chief Joseph, Nez Perce Nation

 

More Native American Quotes About Nature

145.

“Only to the white man was nature a wilderness, and only to him was the land infested’ with wild animals and savage people. To us it was tame, Earth was bountiful, and we were surrounded with the blessings of the Great Mystery.”
–Black Elk, Oglala Lakota Sioux Nation

 

146.

“The ground on which we stand is sacred ground. It is the dust and blood of our ancestors.”
–Chief Plenty Coups, Crow Nation

 

147.

“We are the natural nurturers of the Earth Mother. The Earth Mother needs our help, she needs our prayers.”
–Agnes Baker-Pilgrim, Takelma Nation

 

148.

“The frog does not drink up the pond in which he lives.”
–Unknown, Native American Proverb

 

149.

“I was warmed by the sun, rocked by the winds and sheltered by the trees, as other Indian babes. I can go everywhere with a good feeling.” –Geronimo, Apache Nation

 

150.

“The land is sacred. These words are at the core of your being. The land is our mother, the rivers our blood. Take our land away and we die. That is, the Indian in us dies.”
–Mary Brave Bird, Sicangu Oyate Lakota Sioux Nation

 

151.

“The ground on which we stand is sacred ground. It is the blood of our ancestors.”
–Plenty Coups, Crow Nation

 

152.

The Great Spirit is in all things: he is in the air we breathe. The Great Spirit is our father, but the Earth is our mother. She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us.”
–Big Thunder Wabanaki, Algonquin Nation

 

153.

“When man moves away from nature, his heart becomes hard.”
–Luther Standing Bear, Lakota Sioux Nation

Muir Woods, Northern California
Muir Woods, Northern California.

 

Photos: Wikimedia Commons

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