Even though this book was first published in 1920, I find it an amazing book that I think most pantheists would want to put on their to-read list. It was the first classic “pantheist” book I read once I began calling myself a pantheist and is still my overall favorite. I think it’s still so true today and the way he writes is much easier for me to understand than heavier philosophical books. John Burroughs was born in 1837 in the Catskills and grew up on a farm, and I think his nature writing is almost like poetry itself.
In his chapter called Soundings, Section VI – What’s In a Name, he so perfectly and eloquently explains what a difference there is when we call the Infinite, the Source, by the name of God as opposed to calling it by the name of Nature. What a different picture we get of reality!
“How much is in a name! When we call the power back of all God, it smells of creeds and systems, of superstition, intolerance, persecution; but when we call it Nature, it smells of spring and summer, of green fields and blooming groves, of birds and flowers and sky and stars. I admit that it smells of tornadoes and earthquakes, of jungles and wildernesses, of disease and death, too, but these things make it all the more real to us.”
The book is chock full of great stuff like this.
—Daughter of the Mountains 10:43, 13 June 2008 (EDT)