Nature exists only by contrast with a counterpart. The counterpart to the natural is, depending on the context, the spiritual, the cultural, the rational, the artificial. A human society becomes alienated from nature by defining a nature/non-nature contrast and identifying with or aspiring to the non-natural realm. The alienated worldview holds that the best parts of ourselves are not natural, that we do not properly belong to nature, that our highest achievement is to escape or transcend nature.



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