As a student of religions and ecology, the times I’ve spent in the tropics have afforded me a special affection for these places. While my own affections cannot compare to those of someone tied to a place by blood or birth, I’ve come to deeply appreciate the tropics for their role in ecology, religion, and culture – but also for their own rhythms and energies. As a Northeasterner used to extremes of light and dark, heat and cold, humid and dry, I love the sense of balance found in the tropics: the even day length, temperature, and flourishing of plant life that satisfies man and beast alike. Yet while I may find solace in stability, nature reminds me that no place is free from change.

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