By Christian Rohr
Lecture given at Novosibirsk State University (2002)
Introduction: If we try to define “nature” in the medieval sense, we have to consider a much wider sense than “nature” (in English) or “Natur” (in German) means nowadays. As our discussions have shown, the Russian expression ï ðèðî äà is more generally used and therefore more suitable to compare it with medieval “natura” (in Latin).
So, nature is not only the uncultivated part of environment, but also the sum of living behaviours in general, the relationship between god and human beings, the explanations of the universe and of life in particular. In this way, I will not be able to present a full survey on “man and nature”.
In addition to that, this field of research in now growing very quickly, developing also many sub-disciplines. Instead of that I prefer to give you an insight in some of the possible approaches and I mostly want to focus on examples, which I will treat in more detail.