I made it to 41 years of age having only camped once in my life. It was with a group of friends in my early 20s for only one night. With the coronavirus lockdown in full gear, and tired of staying home all day for months on end, I decided to try my hand at camping in September of 2020. I bought the necessary camping gear and, on a slow road journey to Alabama, I camped in Bald Eagle State Forest (Campsite 5) in the middle of Pennsylvania and the Trail of Tears State Forest (Campsite S4) in southern Illinois for a total of five nights. Here are some things I learned…

1. God made a lot of bugs

I thought I had seen all the bugs that have ever been made, but I saw many new varieties that liked me and wanted to be as close to me and my tent as possible. I acted as a natural magnet to bugs, to a degree that was higher than what I could elicit from women at the peak of my pickup lifestyle. Without learning any type of bug game, I attracted at least a dozen species, particularly the daddy long legs. They would approach my tent before picking a spot to rest, and some found a way inside to watch me sleep. To dispose of them, I’d grab one of their long legs and toss them out.

2. God likes variety

It’s impossible to be bored in this life if we embark on a mission to view all of God’s creations. He made so many different categories of living things, and so many kinds within those categories, that some men have effortlessly dedicated their lives to simply studying one kind of species within one category. There are many men around the world who only study fruit flies, and nothing else, and when they die, they will lament that they don’t know more about fruit flies.

I have identified less than 100 birds from many hours of birdwatching. I could spend entire afternoons with a pair of binoculars to look at just a few bird species, and yet God has created over 10,000 species of birds. I could become a full-time bird watcher and not even scratch the surface of birds.

Boredom is a choice. Even in this fallen world, God has created so much variety for us, so many potential fields of study, that to be bored is more an indicator of our need for entertainment than there not being enough to do or see.

3. The night is for evil things

For most of my life, I’ve been a night owl. It’s effortless for me to stay up until 2 or 3am if I choose. Before, I’d use that time to pursue matters of the flesh, to watch pornography or exist in a state of sloth. So it’s only when I go into the woods, without lighting available at the flick of a switch, that I can understand why Satan’s best work is done at night. In the cover of darkness, when the Christian is asleep to get a jump start on serving God in the morning, evildoers focus their eyes on filthy things and hatch plots to better gain from the world.

I still go to bed rather late, around 1am, lured by low-grade internet content, but while camping, I was ready for bed at 9pm. My portable lantern could not coax me to stay up later, and even if it did, I felt genuinely tired. There was no screen to keep me energized or fluorescent lighting to trick my brain that it was still daytime. It turns out that I’m only a night owl in the modern world, but in a candle-lit world, I’d have no reason to stay up.

4. I spend half of my waking life in front of a computer

I am an extension of the computer; the computer is an extension of me. All that I can contribute to the world is through a computer. The way my faith in God is displayed to others is through a computer. The way I expend my creative energies and stay in touch with friends is through a computer. The computer is like one of my appendages, a third arm that I may even choose above one of my own. As long as I live, the computer will be my partner. We will never separate.

While camping, I easily adapted to not using a computer. I went for walks and read. I wrote using pen and paper. But the first thing I did when going back to the city was get on a computer (smartphone) to check everything I had missed, from text messages to world news. What an immediate feeling of happiness to be connected again, to receive information that, in the end, doesn’t matter an hour—or maybe even a minute—after it is consumed. Camping reminded me to use the computer as a tool for serving my mission from God, instead of me getting used by it.

5. It’s easy to turn nature into a false idol

It’s not hard to make nature into a god. You can master multiple methods of camping, embark on more extreme terrain, climb mountains, challenge yourself with bushcrafting techniques, or become a treehugger activist that attempts to save the forests. The variety that God gives us can easily lead to a deceived state where you put the variety above God.

Camping is one of the most wholesome hobbies you can have, but unless it makes you more humble or directly helps with your spiritual life, it is just another hobby, one that should be moderated and not exceed your love of prayer, church, and scriptural reading. The forest may allow you to feel more “connected” to God, but He demands much more of us than pleasant feelings while being surrounded by beautiful views. He demands that we repent, be baptized, and serve Him and our neighbor with love. Nature itself cannot save, so it must only remain a part of a Christian’s life, not the whole.

6. The natural order was on display without adulteration

I did not see a single living creature, whether animal or plant, going against the nature that God bestowed upon them. There were no homosexual birds or trees with tattoos. I did not hear the squirrels playing hip hop music or encounter a deer that demand I address him as xi/xir/they/them. While the hands of men were visible upon the forest, the vast majority of my sense perceptions of the nature that surrounded me was what I believe God intended. There was a harmony that made sense, both logically and spiritually, and from that I noticed that my basal level of tension and anxiety were reduced.

In the two forests I visited, I saw more abidance to the natural order in a square foot of dirt near my tent than in the entirety of a major American city. You can take your pick of which city—you will not find one that contains a holy patch outside of a church that is more pleasing on our spirit than a section of dirt teeming with visible plants and bugs and unseen bacteria. When I entered the city after camping, I did not feel as if it God was present.

Conclusion

Camping was what I needed after spending most of the year in my mom’s living room. I enjoyed having no worldly cares and being able to read at an accelerated pace. While I did miss my beloved digital screens, I could easily imagine a life where I would have to permanently go without them. If only I can find a middle ground between the city and the forest, to stay within arm’s reach of my neighbor but also worship God surrounded by His natural glory. Maybe one day He will grant me to live in such a place.

Read Next: 11 Things I Learned From Living On The Blue Ridge Mountains For 2 Months

Loading new replies...

Good article. I need to go camping again. I recently used my employer's select-a-gift program to get a new tent, and months later I still haven't used it. Sad.

Reply 2 Likes

Always blows my mind when I'm in the country how my quickly my body adapts to the natural cycle of the day and how little stimulation I need to feel good. It really shows how perverse and dangerous modern city living is, and why the left is so hellbent on ensuring every person needs to live in an ant colony.

Reply 9 Likes

Good article.

I basically live in a National Forest. Go out my backyard, walk by the fence, keep walking, and you'll end up starving to death before you see another soul.

While the silence is wonderful, there is one thing that I don't like.

There is one specific direction in the backyard, I've looked that way a lot times. It "looks" totally 100% normal. I could post a picture of it on here, and you wouldn't think anything is wrong with it. Just more trees, bushes, and everything else you can possibly think of when you think of "nature."

There is something WRONG in that specific direction!

I can never put anything under a microscope or put it in any lab, and say, "Aha! Here's the problem!"

It's just a weird gut-feeling, in one specific direction. When I'm out racking leaves, and I don't want to be close to that spot, I can be out on the deck, and I don't really feel comfortable having my back towards that direction.

I grip my Crucifix around my neck when I really take the time to look in that specific direction. I look to the right of it, I look to the left of it, or any other direction and "nothing." It's perfectly normal. I look in that specific direction, and I want to walk away and not look back. I've never seen anything weird or outlandish in that direction, no ghost, no Bigfoot, no aliens, I just look at it, and I really want to get away.

Reply 12 Likes

click to expand...

There is something WRONG in that specific direction!

I can never put anything under a microscope or put it in any lab, and say, "Aha! Here's the problem!"

It's just a weird gut-feeling, in one specific direction. When I'm out racking leaves, and I don't want to be close to that spot, I can be out on the deck, and I don't really feel comfortable having my back towards that direction.

I grip my Crucifix around my neck when I really take the time to look in that specific direction. I look to the right of it, I look to the left of it, or any other direction and "nothing." It's perfectly normal. I look in that specific direction, and I want to walk away and not look back. I've never seen anything weird or outlandish in that direction, no ghost, no Bigfoot, no aliens, I just look at it, and I really want to get away.

Have you checked? Maybe you're facing D.C.

Reply 7 Likes

click to expand...

There were no homosexual birds or trees with tattoos. I did not hear the squirrels playing hip hop music or encounter a deer that demand I address him as xi/xir/they/them.

Made the entire article with those lines. Funny, but so very, very relevant.

Reply 3 Likes

Good article.

I basically live in a National Forest. Go out my backyard, walk by the fence, keep walking, and you'll end up starving to death before you see another soul.

While the silence is wonderful, there is one thing that I don't like.

There is one specific direction in the backyard, I've looked that way a lot times. It "looks" totally 100% normal. I could post a picture of it on here, and you wouldn't think anything is wrong with it. Just more trees, bushes, and everything else you can possibly think of when you think of "nature."

There is something WRONG in that specific direction!

I can never put anything under a microscope or put it in any lab, and say, "Aha! Here's the problem!"

It's just a weird gut-feeling, in one specific direction. When I'm out racking leaves, and I don't want to be close to that spot, I can be out on the deck, and I don't really feel comfortable having my back towards that direction.

I grip my Crucifix around my neck when I really take the time to look in that specific direction. I look to the right of it, I look to the left of it, or any other direction and "nothing." It's perfectly normal. I look in that specific direction, and I want to walk away and not look back. I've never seen anything weird or outlandish in that direction, no ghost, no Bigfoot, no aliens, I just look at it, and I really want to get away.

Have you thought of using your vision and feelings as a radar to hone in on what it is, maybe a dead body or a place where people practiced arcane evil arts at one point? Maybe someone or something was defiled there. It's not a direction, it's you looking at something. I guarantee if you walk past it and look in the same direction you won't feel the negativity. The Lord shall overcome all evil, and you can't let something unknown draw so much ire when your trust in Him is secure.

Reply 4 Likes

click to expand...

A good read, thank you Roosh!

I've been a Christian for about three years, and a catechumen Orthodox for about half a year. Since this time, I have not gone camping alone, though I do go into natural preserves on a regular basis. In my past, I was in areas that were bigger draws for tourists, the redwood forests of California, Big Sur, other parts of the Pacific Northwest, the grand canyon, etc. However, in this time as a Christian, I think I am enjoying nature MORE even though I am just in random parks and preserves that are definitely beautiful, but not nationally renowned. I believe that this is because I am often combining prayer with my time in these preserves, giving respect to God who created them. When I see a tree beautifully in flower, I will say "Glory to God!" and cross myself. When I go by the stream, I will find a nice spot to sit and say the Jesus Prayer for several minutes.

As nice as nature is, if we do not honor the one who created nature, we miss out on something essential. For art and music, though the art can be appreciated by itself, I always found it adds another layer of depth and appreciation to learn about the artist and musicians. However, unlike artists and musicians who are flawed and sinful, God is perfect. Unlike artists and musicians, who did not create their art out of nothing, but simply re-created what was already created, in a unique or beautiful way, with their minds -- God created this all out of nothing, with His Eternal love and wisdom. If we go into nature and do not honor the one who created it, we are seeing a shadow but missing out on the sun which gave birth to that shadow, when combined with the object. This is why I am appreciating nature a lot more as a Christian, than I did when I worshipped nature in-itself as someone more in the Taoist/Zen Buddhist perspective of my past.

Reply 2 Likes

click to expand...

I keep re-reading one and two. So pretty.

Reply Like

I was raised to live of the land, I learned from my father and his father before and so on. When I go to my hunting ground that my family has gone to for over 60 years I feel it. There is an energy that gets into me that is peaceful but powerful and it is refreshing to say the least. Furthermore if you men have never tried hunting big game wow! Let me tell you when you take an animals life to feed upon the feeling you get is out of this world better than any drug or woman. It as if nature injected you with pure adrenaline straight to your heart. Your senses get sharper your heart pounds and this sweet euphoria comes over you. Quite simply you feel alive like few others experience.

Reply Like

click to expand...

Good article.

I basically live in a National Forest. Go out my backyard, walk by the fence, keep walking, and you'll end up starving to death before you see another soul.

While the silence is wonderful, there is one thing that I don't like.

There is one specific direction in the backyard, I've looked that way a lot times. It "looks" totally 100% normal. I could post a picture of it on here, and you wouldn't think anything is wrong with it. Just more trees, bushes, and everything else you can possibly think of when you think of "nature."

There is something WRONG in that specific direction!

I can never put anything under a microscope or put it in any lab, and say, "Aha! Here's the problem!"

It's just a weird gut-feeling, in one specific direction. When I'm out racking leaves, and I don't want to be close to that spot, I can be out on the deck, and I don't really feel comfortable having my back towards that direction.

I grip my Crucifix around my neck when I really take the time to look in that specific direction. I look to the right of it, I look to the left of it, or any other direction and "nothing." It's perfectly normal. I look in that specific direction, and I want to walk away and not look back. I've never seen anything weird or outlandish in that direction, no ghost, no Bigfoot, no aliens, I just look at it, and I really want to get away.

There's plenty of youtube channels with people that describe a similar feeling.

There's also a really interesting one that discusses people vanishing in national parks which might interest you, or add to your concern... ha ha. Truly bizarre and unexplained scenarios. The comments on these videos are quite telling and share some truth I think, alongside what you're feeling. Perhaps it's native american land. Here in NZ native burial sites have that same feel.

Really enjoyed the article, Roosh. Indeed boredom is a choice. I need to remember that.

Reply 3 Likes

click to expand...

I still go to bed rather late, around 1am, lured by low-grade internet content, but while camping, I was ready for bed at 9pm.

Lights, especially Fluorescent lights and blue light, have a profound effect on melatonin production. That's why 9pm is often referred to as "hiker's midnight" since it is usually a couple hours or so past sundown.

Reply Like

Good article.

I basically live in a National Forest. Go out my backyard, walk by the fence, keep walking, and you'll end up starving to death before you see another soul.

While the silence is wonderful, there is one thing that I don't like.

There is one specific direction in the backyard, I've looked that way a lot times. It "looks" totally 100% normal. I could post a picture of it on here, and you wouldn't think anything is wrong with it. Just more trees, bushes, and everything else you can possibly think of when you think of "nature."

There is something WRONG in that specific direction!

I can never put anything under a microscope or put it in any lab, and say, "Aha! Here's the problem!"

It's just a weird gut-feeling, in one specific direction. When I'm out racking leaves, and I don't want to be close to that spot, I can be out on the deck, and I don't really feel comfortable having my back towards that direction.

I grip my Crucifix around my neck when I really take the time to look in that specific direction. I look to the right of it, I look to the left of it, or any other direction and "nothing." It's perfectly normal. I look in that specific direction, and I want to walk away and not look back. I've never seen anything weird or outlandish in that direction, no ghost, no Bigfoot, no aliens, I just look at it, and I really want to get away.

You should get in contact with trained Exorcists who know the Craft. I bet that area featured demonic rituals or some other influence of Demons.

That area needs Exorcism. And I know Jesus Christ is stronger than the Demons.

Reply 1 Like

click to expand...

So it's official, Roosh is a twitcher:)

Reply Like

click to expand...

God made the species perfect, they are programmed without instructions. Humans need direction. Some, unfortunately, take direction from Satan.

Reply Like

Good article.

I basically live in a National Forest. Go out my backyard, walk by the fence, keep walking, and you'll end up starving to death before you see another soul.

While the silence is wonderful, there is one thing that I don't like.

There is one specific direction in the backyard, I've looked that way a lot times. It "looks" totally 100% normal. I could post a picture of it on here, and you wouldn't think anything is wrong with it. Just more trees, bushes, and everything else you can possibly think of when you think of "nature."

There is something WRONG in that specific direction!

I can never put anything under a microscope or put it in any lab, and say, "Aha! Here's the problem!"

It's just a weird gut-feeling, in one specific direction. When I'm out racking leaves, and I don't want to be close to that spot, I can be out on the deck, and I don't really feel comfortable having my back towards that direction.

I grip my Crucifix around my neck when I really take the time to look in that specific direction. I look to the right of it, I look to the left of it, or any other direction and "nothing." It's perfectly normal. I look in that specific direction, and I want to walk away and not look back. I've never seen anything weird or outlandish in that direction, no ghost, no Bigfoot, no aliens, I just look at it, and I really want to get away.

For whatever reason, I fall asleep to old reruns of Art Bell. Coincidentally he was discussing dark spooky woods last night. Art said if you are unsure of the woods that you should send a young, voluptuous woman with a low cut top into the woods. If she returns, and if after say a 30 day or so inspection of her behavior, appearance and demeanor you should be able to tell if the woods are safe from demonic spirits.

Reply Like

click to expand...

So basically 8/10 crosses WWA (would worship again): minus one cross for satanic night time and minus one for possible nature idolatry.

Wow, RooshV forum sure has changed a lot!

Reply Like