Our Role and Relationship With Nature | Environmental Topics and Essays
We don't have to look far into history to know that humans evolved in natural settings But in addition, the study also found a unique connection between nature. Society has become an essential condition for human life to arise and to continue . Relationship between the two is bilateral in nature. . This paradigm is distinct both from the conflated application to the entire society of the principle of . Human ecology is an interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary study of the relationship between humans and their natural, .. he also takes a diverse approach to ecology—considering even the unique synthesis between ecology and political.
It is, however, beyond the scope of this paper to review the many ways these concepts have been previously explored 84 — Since then, this shift has seen a major growth in the last 30 years, primarily in areas of positive health and psychology 88 — Despite its broad perspective of human health, the definition has also encountered criticism in relation to its description and its overall reflectance of modern society.
Similarly, others have highlighted the need to distinguish health from happiness 84 or its inability to fully reflect modern transformations in knowledge and development e. As such, there have been calls to reconceptualize this definition, to ensure further clarity and relevance for our adaptive societies Broadly, health has been measured through two theoretical approaches; subjective and objective First, physical health is defined as a healthy organism capable of maintaining physiological fitness through protective or adaptive responses during changing circumstances While it centers on health-related behaviors and fitness including lifestyle and dietary choicesphysiological fitness is considered one of the most important health markers thought to be an integral measure of most bodily functions involved in the performance of daily physical exercise These can be measured through various means, with examples including questionnaires, behavioral observations, motion sensors, and physiological markers e.
Second, mental health is often regarded as a broad concept to define, encapsulating both mental illness and well-being. It can be characterized as the positive state of well-being and the capacity of a person to cope with life stresses as well as contribute to community engagement activities 83 It has the ability to both determine as well as be determined by a host of multifaceted health and social factors being inextricably linked to overall health, inclusive of diet, exercise, and environmental conditions.
As a result, there are no single definitive indicators used to capture its overall measurement. This owes in part to the breadth of methods and tends to represent hedonic e. Third, social health can be generalized as the ability to lead life with some degree of independence and participate in social activities Indicators of the concept revolve around social relationships, social cohesion, and participation in community activities.
Further, such mechanisms are closely linked to improving physical and mental well-being as well as forming constructs, which underline social capital. Owing to its complexity, its measurement focuses on strengths of primary networks or relationships e. Current Knowledge on the Human—Nature Relationship and Health This section summarizes existing theoretical and literature research at the intersection of the human—nature relationship and health, as defined in this review.
6 characteristics that define human nature | Atlas & Boots
Physical Health Though it is widely established that healthy eating and regular exercise have major impacts on physical health 98within the past 30 years research has also identified that exposure to nature e. Empirical research in this domain was first carried out by Ulrich 46 who found that those hospital patients exposed to natural scenery from a window view experienced decreased levels of pain and shorter recovery time after surgery.
In spite of its increasing findings, some have suggested the need for further objective research at the intersect of nature-based parameters and human health 9.
- 6 characteristics that define human nature
- The Human–Nature Relationship and Its Impact on Health: A Critical Review
- Our Role and Relationship With Nature
Spencer was influenced by and reciprocated his influence onto the works of Charles Darwin. Herbert Spencer coined the phrase " survival of the fittest ", he was an early founder of sociology where he developed the idea of society as an organism, and he created an early precedent for the socio-ecological approach that was the subsequent aim and link between sociology and human ecology.
Human values, wealth, life-styles, resource use, and waste, etc.
The nature of these interactions is a legitimate ecological research topic and one of increasing importance. Marsh was interested in the active agency of human-nature interactions an early precursor to urban ecology or human niche construction in frequent reference to the economy of nature. Smallcollaborated with sociologist George E. Their publication "explicitly included the relation of the social world to the material environment.
Richards first introduced the term as " oekology " inand subsequently developed the term "human ecology". Park and Ernest W.Distinct Nature - Human
Burgess also from the sociology department at the University of Chicago. Their student, Roderick D. McKenzie helped solidify human ecology as a sub-discipline within the Chicago school.
Some authors have argued that geography is human ecology. Much historical debate has hinged on the placement of humanity as part or as separate from nature. An Interdisciplinary Journal gave an introductory statement on the scope of topics in human ecology. Genetic, physiological, and social adaptation to the environment and to environmental change; The role of social, cultural, and psychological factors in the maintenance or disruption of ecosystems; Effects of population density on health, social organization, or environmental quality; New adaptive problems in urban environments; Interrelations of technological and environmental changes; The development of unifying principles in the study of biological and cultural adaptation; The genesis of maladaptions in human biological and cultural evolution; The relation of food quality and quantity to physical and intellectual performance and to demographic change; The application of computers, remote sensing devices, and other new tools and techniques : Bates  notes lines of continuity in the discipline and the way it has changed: Population growth has been exponentiated, cities have become the primary place of residence, and the majority of the world is now out of touch with the workings of nature.
Although every species plays a unique role in the biosphere and inherently has its own impact, not every species has the cognitive ability to measure their influence or the capacity to change it. Humans are unique in that respect, which is the root of the problem. We know we are crippling the environment. We have the ability to do something about it. Therefore, we should make change where change is necessary. Economy The size of our population and its incessant desire to expand has an obvious impact on the environment.
However, that impact is magnified with the demands of industry and capitalism. In his book, Regarding Nature, Andrew McLaughlin identifies industrialism and the capitalist mindset as being especially influential on our regard for nature: Further causing a perceived division from nature is the economic structure we have allowed to infect most of the world.
Human ecology - Wikipedia
Our relationship with nature has now become purely economic. We do not associate ourselves as a part of nature because we use it for profit. Forests are cut down for the profits of the lumber industry and to make room for livestock. Animals that we are undoubtedly related to, that have senses and the ability to socialize are slaughtered by the billions to feed an increasingly carnivorous population.
Resources such as oil and food are all unevenly distributed throughout the world and therefore used as a platform for profit. All the while the environment bears the grunt of our greed. In order to reconstruct our views of nature and understand our place within it, it is important to reconsider our relationship with each other and our surroundings.
We have to consider ourselves as part of a bigger picture. Industry and capitalism rely heavily on ignorance and individualism. However, the reality is that we are all dependent upon each other in one way or another. Time for Change Humans play a vital role in nature just like everything else.
What separates us from nature though, is the ability to understand our place within it. This cognitive capacity of ours has historically been the cause of a perceived division between man and nature.
However, in order to achieve a sustainable future in which humans assume a more natural role and have less of an impact it is imperative that we reconsider our role and relationship with nature. A change in the way we regard nature has obvious political, economic, and social repercussions, but our cognitive ability obliges us to reevaluate our position in the world rather than continue to degrade it.
There are a number of ways in which we can begin to reconsider our relationship with nature, but all of which require an enormous effort.
Through a universal education curriculum, it is possible to encourage people everywhere to consider themselves as part of a larger picture.
By teaching people about the environment, evolution, and ecology, we can provide them with the tools for change. Lewis Mumford imagined a social revolution brought about by a change in values through educational reform: In order to bring about necessary change it is critical that people take action.