There were four stages in the development of his love of the outer world. In the first stag, “his love of nature was simply a healthy boy’s delight in freedom and the open air.”
Then followed a period of the senses. He loved nature for her sensuous beauty. This stage of “dizzy joys” and “aching raptures” came to an end with his experience of human sorrow and suffering in France. He had kept watch over “human mortality” and in his eyes nature now took on a “sober coloring.”Love of nature now fused with the love of Man.
But this stage of “human-heartedness” was a transitory one. It was soon followed by the last and the most important stage – the stage of the spiritual and mystical interpretation of Nature. He now imparted a separate life and soul to nature; henceforth he had apprehensions of transcendental presence in the external world.