O Books, 2011, 176 pp
ISBN 978-1-84694-401-7

Reviewed by Marian Van Eyk McCain


The old mechanistic paradigm under which most of us grew up has trained our thought habits so thoroughly that those of us struggling to express an ecocentric worldview often find ourselves literally at a loss for words. For example, we hear ourselves using phrases like ‘walking outside in Nature,’ even though we know that Nature includes us also, whether outdoors or in. We talk about ‘caring for the planet’ as though it were a thing and separate from ourselves. And if finding a vocabulary for ecocentrism is hard,  how much harder is it to live it?

Stephanie Sorrell’s new book, Nature as Mirror is a great step in that direction. As she points out, “Natural cycles and processes profoundly shape and transform our lives just like the currents shape the rock at the bottom of the river.” By reminding us, page after page, of how our inner and outer worlds are mirrors of each other, Sorrell invites us into a deep, cellular awareness of who we really are.

I am reminded of Christ’s words as reported in the Gospel of Thomas: “When you make the inner as the outer and the outer as the inner and the above as the below…then shall you enter the Kingdom.”