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Hi

I'm trying to undertsand the meaning of some words from the passage below:

In the words of geneticist David Suzuki, our sense of separation from nature enables us to “act on it, abstract from it, use it, take it apart; we can wreck it, because it is another, it is alien.”

--- Can you tell me what the author means by "act on it", "abstract from it" (I think it means become different than it), and "take it apart"?

How do you understand these three in this context?

Thanks
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My take:

act on it -- do things to nature (plough, harvest, build dams)

abstract from it -- think of it abstractly; analyze it (research, experiment)

take it apart -- change it, destroy it (cut down all the trees, etc)
Comments  
Hi

As for "abstract from it" I've found it could also mean "considered apart from concrete existence", so maybe "separate/alienated from it"?