Walking in Nature Breeds Genius?

kid leaves on face, kids get dirty

Author and environmentalist Richard Louv, in an excerpt from his new book, The Nature Principle, explains:

"Can time in nature nurture genius itself - or taking walks outdoors improve the ability of people with ADD to focus?

Creative genius is not the accumulation of knowledge; it's the ability to see patterns in the universe, to detect hidden links between what is and what could be."


[I add to this: It's also not spouting out facts and details, remembering trivia, or a high GPA. It's more of an ability to see beyond, see the big picture from disparate pieces.]


Louv argues that kids aren't the only ones missing out.This author made the case that today's children suffer from nature-deficit disorder. He explains:

"Gary Small, a professor of psychiatry at the University of California at Los Angeles, suggests that the breakneck pace of technological change is creating what he calls a brain gap between the generations, and this gap is opening in a single generation."



Louv introduces physical benefits of exposure to a bacterium found in dirt with experiments on how this may make us smarter that our so-called "smart pills" in common use today:

"Mycobacterium vaccae, is usually ingested or inhaled when people spend time in nature. The effect wore off in a few weeks, but, Matthews said, the research suggests that the M. vaccae we come in contact with all the time in nature may "play a role" in learning in mammals. Smart pill, meet smart bug.


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