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A Shrine To A Pioneering Nature Writer

"I wish to meet the facts of life—the vital facts, which are the phenomena or actuality the gods meant to show us—face to face, and so I came down here." So begins one entry in the diaries Henry David Thoreau kept between 1837 and 1861, just before his death. Famous for his two-year self-exile to a cabin outside Concord, Massachusetts, the influential American thinker and environmentalist left behind volumes of reflections and observations of the endlessly fascinating natural world around him. As part of the 200th anniversary of his birth, there's a comprehensive exhibition at NYC's Morgan Library devoted to the journals. Check it out! The show closes (and moves to Concord) September 10.

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The Bajau People of Sulawesi Might Be the Most Aquatic Humans on Earth

No 95

Bajau children learn to swim around the time they take their first steps. The hours they spend underwater serve to strengthen their eye muscles, enabling them to see as well as some marine species do. They don’t use scuba equipment, instead learning to hold their breath for up to five minutes, and to know the relaxed, almost trance-like state that precedes a long...

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