It used to be the case that you could head out into territories nobody had been before, and experience the beauty and harshness of nature as if nobody had gone before you.
It wasn’t that nobody else had beaten you to a location; it was that they hadn’t dominated it, and bent it to the service of humanity. Seeing a world unshaped by humanity is impossible for many people because of where they live. What we call wilderness now is often just a ‘wild area’ or ‘park’ and unless you live in a very limited set of locations, it could be wild but it isn’t unshaped.
A popular saying is that we know more about the surface of the moon than we do the seabed. Strangely this is true, as we have been so busy reaching out, we ignored 70% of the planet…except for when it could offer us something.
For divers, that 70% is our last great wilderness. Sure humans have left their impression, largely in negative ways, but they haven’t humanised, sanitized and idiot proofed it. There are not only still places underwater that nobody has explored, there are many of them.
There are species and vistas that nobody has seen, and more importantly, nobody has shaped. There are still mysteries to solve. Whole cities have been swallowed by the oceans, and they wait for whoever stumbles across them.
Currently people are mystified about an object in the Baltic Sea. 210 feet down they discovered something 70 feet long, that looked like the Millennium Falcon. It was assumed this must just be a weird rock formation until samples showed unnatural metals that must have been manufactured. What it is, currently is a mystery. Whether it ends up being an ancient monument that sank beneath the waves, something natural we’ve never seen before, or even a forgotten WW2 experiment, it’s very existence highlights just how little we know about what is down there.
And for many this is why diving is a fabulous lifestyle. Not because they want to discover these things personally, but because they want to adjust their mental trim, equalise their minds, and they need that natural environment. To say, “Yay for humanity and civilization…but let’s just leave it over there for a while so we can recharge in a natural environment in peace.”
Your experience could be completely different, and maybe it is different for everyone, but that’s my take on it.
Why not check out the home page while you’re here, and see what We Dive Too is all about?
Colin is an inventor, author, guitar player, amateur scientist and steampunk enthusiast. During his years as a ships navigator his luck was so consistently bad that he was briefly known as ‘Jonah’, presumed cursed, and subsequently barred from setting foot on any boat docked in Ireland. Due to his misadventures he spent more time underwater than most divers will achieve in a lifetime. Not deliberately, but he was still down there!