One of my favorite ways to relax and spend time with others is enjoying a good craft beer. Just like some people enjoy the nuances of wine, whiskey or other food or drink, I find a lot of enjoyment sampling different IPAs, pale ales, amber ales, stouts and more. I was thinking this week how learning about and appreciating craft beer is actually a good example of how we might approach learning about and appreciating much of creation.
For one, there is all sorts of biology, chemistry and other science that goes into brewing beer. You can gain appreciation for the end product by diving into the ingredients, the brewing process, the science of tasting, and more. Similarly, increasing our scientific understanding of the natural world can help build our appreciation for it. Ever since learning more about the science of trees this past year, I certainly notice and appreciate them more while on hikes and neighborhood walks.
Then there’s also all the variety of craft beer types – lagers, wheat ales, pale ales, IPAs, amber ales, stouts, porters, sours, etc – and a plethora of aromas and flavors. We can find this sort of variety in the environment if we spend some time exploring it. I am not a bird watcher and have limited bird knowledge at the moment, but I have started trying to notice differences in the birds frequenting the trees and bushes around our home. That’s only a small start to noticing and enjoying the variety in our natural world.
Finally, our appreciation of craft beer (or whatever food or drink you personally enjoy) often increases when we share it with others. The same holds true when we share time with others outdoors, whether it’s in a park, on a hike or another recreational activity.
So, here’s to appreciating craft beer and the world around us – cheers!