John Muir Quotes About Nature, Yosemite, God, Hiking, Death, Life

John Muir is also known as “John of the Mountains” and “Father of the National Parks”, was an influential Scottish-American naturalist, author, environmental philosopher, botanist, zoologist, glaciologist, and early advocate for the preservation of wilderness in the United States of America. These John Muir quotes will motivate you.

Best John Muir Quotes

  1. “I’d rather be in the mountains thinking of God, than in church thinking about the mountains.” ~ John Muir
  2. “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
  3. “Of all the paths you take in life,
    make sure a few of them are dirt.” ~ John Muir
  4. “The sun shines not on us but in us. The rivers flow not past, but through us. Thrilling, tingling, vibrating every fiber and cell of the substance of our bodies, making them glide and sing. The trees wave and the flowers bloom in our bodies as well as our souls, and every bird song, wind song, and tremendous storm song of the rocks in the heart of the mountains is our song, our very own, and sings our love.” ~ John Muir
  5. “In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks.” ~ John Muir

  6. “Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity.” ~ John Muir
  7. “Hiking – I don’t like either the word or the thing. People ought to saunter in the mountains – not hike! Do you know the origin of that word ‘saunter?’ It’s a beautiful word. Away back in the Middle Ages people used to go on pilgrimages to the Holy Land, and when people in the villages through which they passed asked where they were going, they would reply, “A la sainte terre,’ ‘To the Holy Land.’ And so they became known as sainte-terre-ers or saunterers. Now these mountains are our Holy Land, and we ought to saunter through them reverently, not ‘hike’ through them.” ~ John Muir Quotes
  8. “God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand tempests and floods. But he cannot save them from fools.” ~ John Muir
  9. “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
  10. “Wilderness is a necessity… there must be places for human beings to satisfy their souls.” ~ John Muir

  11. “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” ~ John Muir
  12. “To sit in solitude, to think in solitude with only the music of the stream and the cedar to break the flow of silence, there lies the value of wilderness.” ~ John Muir
  13. “Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.” ~ John Muir
  14. “Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” ~ John Muir
  15. “The mountains are calling and I must go.” ~ John Muir
  16. “Nature in her green, tranquil woods heals and soothes all afflictions.” ~ John Muir
  17. “The sun shines not on us but in us.” ~ John Muir

  18. “As long as I live, I’ll hear waterfalls and birds and winds sing. I’ll interpret the rocks, learn the language of flood, storm, and the avalanche. I’ll acquaint myself with the glaciers and wild gardens, and get as near the heart of the world as I can”.” ~ John Muir
  19. “Society speaks and all men listen, mountains speak and wise men listen” ~ John Muir
  20. “In this silent, serene wilderness the weary can gain a heart-bath in perfect peace.” ~ John Muir
  21. “The world is big and I want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.” ~ John Muir

  22. “All the wild world is beautiful, and it matters but little where we go, to highlands or lowlands, woods or plains, on the sea or land or down among the crystals of waves or high in a balloon in the sky; through all the climates, hot or cold, storms and calms, everywhere and always we are in God’s eternal beauty and love. So universally true is this, the spot where we chance to be always seems the best.” ~ John Muir
  23. “To lovers of the wild, these mountains are not a hundred miles away. Their spiritual power and the goodness of the sky make them near, as a circle of friends. … You cannot feel yourself out of doors; plain, sky, and mountains ray beauty which you feel. You bathe in these spirit-beams, turning round and round, as if warming at a camp-fire. Presently you lose consciousness of your own separate existence: you blend with the landscape, and become part and parcel of nature.” ~ John Muir
  24. “Look! Nature is overflowing with the grandeur of God!” ~ John Muir

  25. “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees.” ~ John Muir
  26. “Going into the woods, is going home” ~ John Muir
  27. “God never made an ugly landscape. All that sun shines on is beautiful, so long as it is wild.” ~ John Muir
  28. “Come to the woods, for here is rest. There is no repose like that of the green deep woods.” ~ John Muir
  29. “Wilderness is not only a haven for native plants and animals but it is also a refuge from society. Its a place to go to hear the wind and little else, see the stars and the galaxies, smell the pine trees, feel the cold water, touch the sky and the ground at the same time, listen to coyotes, eat the fresh snow, walk across the desert sands, and realize why its good to go outside of the city and the suburbs. Fortunately, there is wilderness just outside the limits of the cities and the suburbs in most of the United States, especially in the West.” ~ John Muir Quotes
  30. “Wilderness is a necessity … They will see what I meant in time. There must be places for human beings to satisfy their souls. Food and drink is not all. There is the spiritual. In some it is only a germ, of course, but the germ will grow.” ~ John Muir
  31. “I wonder if leaves feel lonely when they see their neighbors falling?” ~ John Muir

  32. “There are no accidents in Nature. Every motion of the constantly shifting bodies in the world is timed to the occasion for some definite, fore-ordered end. The flowers blossom in obedience to the same law that marks the course of constellations, and the song of a bird is the echo of a universal symphony. Nature is one, and to me the greatest delight of observation and study is to discover new unities in this all-embracing and eternal harmony.” ~ John Muir
  33. “Nature is ever at work building and pulling down, creating and destroying, keeping everything whirling and flowing, allowing no rest but in rhythmical motion, chasing everything in endless song out of one beautiful form into another.” ~ John Muir
  34. “I am losing precious days. I am degenerating into a machine for making money. I am learning nothing in this trivial world of men. I must break away and get out into the mountains to learn the news” ~ John Muir
  35. “The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.” ~ John Muir

  36. “When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands, flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty.” ~ John Muir
  37. “I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in.” ~ John Muir
  38. “This grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never dried all at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls.” ~ John Muir
  39. “When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.” ~ John Muir

  40. “The battle for conservation will go on endlessly. It is part of the universal battle between right and wrong.” ~ John Muir
  41. “I never saw a discontented tree. They grip the ground as though they liked it, and though fast rooted they travel about as far as we do.” ~ John Muir
  42. “Come to the woods, for here is rest. There is no repose like that of the green deep woods. Here grow the wallflower and the violet. The squirrel will come and sit upon your knee, the logcock will wake you in the morning. Sleep in forgetfulness of all ill. Of all the upness accessible to mortals, there is no upness comparable to the mountains.” ~ John Muir
  43. “As long as I live, I’ll hear waterfalls and birds and winds sing.” ~ John Muir
  44. “Come to the woods, for here is rest.” ~ John Muir

  45. “Wander a whole summer if you can. Time will not be taken from the sum of life. Instead of shortening, it will definitely lengthen it and make you truly immortal.” ~ John Muir
  46. “Wherever we go in the mountains, we find more than we seek.” ~ John Muir
  47. “Any glimpse into the life of an animal quickens our own and makes it so much the larger and better in every way.” ~ John Muir
  48. “These beautiful days … do not exist as mere pictures – maps hung upon the walls of memory to brighten at times when touched by association or will … They saturate themselves into every part of the body and live always.” ~ John Muir
  49. “What wonders lie in every mountain day!” ~ John Muir

  50. “The United States government has always been proud of the welcome it has extended to good men of every nation, seeking freedom and homes and bread.” ~ John Muir
  51. “Let children walk with Nature, let them see the beautiful blendings and communions of death and life, their joyous inseparable unity, as taught in woods and meadows, plains and mountains and streams of our blessed star, and they will learn that death is stingless indeed, and as beautiful as life.” ~ John Muir
  52. “The power of imagination makes us infinite.” ~ John Muir
  53. “In the eternal youth of Nature, you may renew your own.” ~ John Muir
  54. “We all flow from one fountain.” ~ John Muir

  55. “When a man plants a tree, he plants himself.” ~ John Muir
  56. “How glorious a greeting the sun gives the mountains!” ~ John Muir
  57. “The Big Tree is Nature’s forest masterpiece, and so far as I know, the greatest of living things.” ~ John Muir
  58. “When we try to pick out anything by itself we find it hitched to everything else in the universe … The whole wilderness is unity and interrelation, is alive and familiar, full of humanity. The very stones seem talkative, sympathetic, brotherly.” ~ John Muir
  59. “The radiance in some places is so great as to be fairly dazzling… every crystal, every flower a window opening into heaven, a mirror reflecting the Creator.” ~ John Muir
  60. “Handle a book as a bee does a flower, extract its sweetness but do not damage it.” ~ John Muir

  61. “Yosemite Park… None can escape its charms. Its natural beauty cleans and warms like a fire, and you will be willing to stay forever in one place like a tree.” ~ John Muir
  62. “These temple destroyers, devotees of ravaging commercialism, seem to have a perfect contempt for Nature, and, instead of lifting their eyes to the God of the mountains, lift them to the Almighty Dollar.” ~ John Muir
  63. “The world, we are told, was made especially for man – a presumption not supported by all the facts… Why should man value himself as more than a small part of the one great unit of creation?” ~ John Muir
  64. “Few places in this world are more dangerous than home. Fear not, therefore, to try the mountain passes. They will kill care, save you from deadly apathy, set you free, and call forth every faculty into vigorous, enthusiastic action.” ~ John Muir
  65. “Bears are made of the same dust as we, and they breathe the same winds and drink of the same waters. A bear’s days are warmed by the same sun, his dwellings are overdomed by the same blue sky, and his life turns and ebbs with heart pulsing like ours. He was poured from the same first fountain. And whether he, at last, goes to our stingy Heaven or not, he has terrestrial immortality. His life, not long, not short, knows no beginning , no ending. To him life unstinted, unplanned, is above the accidents of time, and his years, markless and boundless, equal eternity.” ~ John Muir

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