"How Many Even Notice The Clouds Or The Ripples In The Water?"
Excerpt from Ecology Awareness on the Uman Pilgrimage:
Many of us walk around with spiritual blinders on, totally oblivious to G-d's creations, even when we are out in the woods or the fields. How many of us stop along the road, to hear a bird or see a butterfly? How many even notice the clouds or the ripples in the water? In so many ways, the animals, trees, and rivers have become strangers to us. We often see them as mere physical objects, not living, breathing things containing sparks of G-d's Holy Light.
This lack of understanding about nature is a serious defect in our perception of the world -- a defect that Rebbe Nachman is teaching us how to repair. There are any number of reasons why he told us to make our hisboddidus in the fields and forests. One reason might be, that he recognized the need for Jews to re-connect with living things in nature.