Multiple meanings for the same six letters spelling: nature, may lead to confusion. egg


Consider nature as a word that – at a minimum – may have four distinctively different meanings. Yet these variations on the concepts of nature have related definitions.


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Essay about contemporary attitudes.

"But where science is supposed to be precise and measured, definitions can be frustratingly vague and variable."

Nature, 22 Ocober 2008. # 1    

These interrelated conceptualizations or the four meanings can be traced to ancient Greek thought, if not earlier. In origin and influence the meanings we derive from the use of the words: natural, nature, second nature or naturally are widespread and long-lasting.


As seen from the moon, the Earth as life's natural oasis.

"Here is our poetry, for we have pulled down the the stars to our will."
Ezra Pound.

Nature as virtue; sisters of the order that is at the essence of existence.


"…the universe is composed of Nature and the Soul."

Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature, 1836 .


sense of place from nature


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"Language: Disputed definitions," Nature. 2008.
If you want to start an argument, ask the person who just said 'paradigm shift' what it really means. Or 'epigenetic'. Nature goes in search of the terms that get scientists most worked up.
Nature, Published online 22 October 2008 | Nature 455, 1023-1028 (2008) | doi:10.1038/4551023a

Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature, 1836.

George Perkins Marsh, Man and Nature, 1864.

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