Great Migrations

by misskang

So, I decided to let myself be human for a few days, no CPA studying until Monday.

“It’s remarkable how much we can learn about life by studying nature. For example, scientists can look at the rings of trees and make educated guesses about climate and growing conditions hundreds and even thousands of years ago. One of the things we learn from studying the growth of trees is that during seasons when conditions are ideal, trees grow at a normal rate. However, during seasons when growing conditions are not ideal, trees slow down their growth and devote their energy to the basic elements necessary for survival.

This is a simple but critical lesson to learn. It may seem logical when put in terms of trees or turbulence, but it’s surprising how easy it is to ignore this lesson when it comes to applying these principles in our own daily lives. When stress levels rise, when distress appears, when tragedy strikes, too often we attempt to keep up the same frantic pace or even accelerate, thinking somehow that the more rushed our pace, the better off we will be.

One of the characteristics of modern life seems to be that we are moving at an ever-increasing rate, regardless of turbulence or obstacles.” – President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Of Things that Matter Most

So sort of on par with how President Uchtdorf was saying that we can learn so much from nature – I was reading National Geographic and couldn’t help but absolutely love the article about animal migration and how it parallels our journey on this earth to return back to our heavenly home.

Animal migration is a phenomenon far grander and more patterned than animal movement.  It represents collective travel with long-deferred rewards.  It suggests premeditation and epic willfulness, codified as inherited instinct … They are prolonged movements that carry animals outside familiar habitats; they tend to be linear, not zigzaggy; they involve special behaviors of preparation (such as overfeeding) and arrival; they demand special allocations of energy.  And one more: Migrating animals maintain a fervid attentiveness to the greater mission, which keeps them undistracted by temptations and undeterred by challenges that would turn other animals side.

An arctic tern on its way from Tierra del Fuego to Alaska, for instance, will ignore a nice smelly herring offered from a bird-watcher’s boat in Monterey Bay. Local gulls will dive voraciously for such handouts, while the tern flies on. Why? “Animal migrants do not respond to sensory inputs from resources that would readily elicit responses in other circumstances,” is the dry, careful way Dingle describes it. In plainer words: These critters are hell-for-leather, flat-out just gonna get there.Another way, less scientific, would be to say that the arctic tern resists distraction because it is driven at that moment by an instinctive sense of something we humans find admirable: larger purpose.

The arctic tern senses that it can eat later. It can rest later. It can mate later. Right now its implacable focus is the journey; its undivided intent is arrival. Reaching some gravelly coastline in the Arctic, upon which other arctic terns have converged, will serve its larger purpose, as shaped by evolution: finding a place, a time, and a set of circumstances in which it can successfully hatch and rear offspring.” – David Quammen

And on another note – Alma 30:44

44But Alma said unto him: Thou hast had signs enough; will ye tempt your God? Will ye say, Show unto me a sign, when ye have the testimony of aall these thy brethren, and also all the holy prophets? The scriptures are laid before thee, yea, and all things denote there is a God; yea, even the bearth, and call things that are upon the face of it, yea, and its dmotion, yea, and also all theeplanets which move in their regular form do witness that there is a Supreme Creator.

All things testify of Christ and denote that God exists.  Through our learning process and the things we witness in life, we see the pattern of God.  Per this example, of course, many differences between humans and animals exist and one being our ability to choose.  And because animals are programmed to be the way that they are, we able to observe their patterns and apply them to our lives.  Imagine if we moved linearly towards our goal, and didn’t yield to temptations because we are driven by our larger purpose.  That’s what makes some people so admirable.

For a wise and glorious purpose
Thou hast placed me here on earth
And withheld the recollection
Of my former friends and birth;
Yet ofttimes a secret something
Whispered, “You’re a stranger here,”
And I felt that I had wandered
From a more exalted sphere.

O My Father, Eliza R. Snow

Cheers to great migrations.