"NATURE! We are surrounded and embraced by her: powerless to separate ourselves from her, and powerless to penetrate beyond her.
Without asking, or warning, she snatches us up into her circling dance, and whirls us on until we are tired, and drop from her arms.
She is shaping new forms: what is, has never yet been; what has been, comes not again. Everything is new, and yet nought but the old.
We live in her midst and know her not. She is incessantly speaking to us, but betrays not her secret. We constantly act upon her, and yet have no power over her.
The one thing she seems to aim at is Individuality; yet she cares nothing for individuals. She is always building up and destroying; but her workshop is inaccessible.
Her life is her children; but where is the mother? She is the only artist; working-up the most uniform material into utter opposites; arriving, without a trace of effort, at perfection, at the most exact precision, though always veiled under a certain softness."
from Nature: Aphorisms by Goethe, as quoted by T. H. Huxley, Nature, Vol 1, 1869