Switzerland

I have visited the Swiss alps on several occasions. Its youthful mountains still preserve their steep slopes, due to inadequate time needed for erosion. This makes them strikingly dramatic with rocky crags amid snowy slopes.  Visiting by car or motorcycle is probably best to experience the mountains.

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Fields near Interlaken

The railways snake along the valleys, which give you amazing pastoral scenery.  But to take to the hills, you’d need. your own wheels.  At the higher elevations glaciers flow gradually down the mountains providing fantastic terrain for hiking.

My brother and I traveled by car to Bern.  This quaint town is famous as being the home of Albert Einstein when he framed the Theory of General Relativity, the equivalence of matter and energy which contributed to the foundations of quantum mechanics and modern cosmology.

It’s fun to walk places, seemingly ordinary, where extraordinary things or thoughts occurred in previous centuries. On the surface, Bern looks very much unchanged by the centuries. By staying neutral during the Second World War, it avoided much of the destruction that forced the rebuilding of much of the old cities of Europe which were marked by war.

Just to the north is the town of Basel, where Carl Jung lost his religion, after a vision he had while looking at the cathedral in Münsterplatz, pictured below.  His vision led him to forsake theology, instead leading him to pioneer a new approach to psychology and, in some respects, a new mysticism.  Subsequently, he became president of the International Psychoanalytical Association, which lay the groundwork for modern psychology.

I didn’t have any spiritual epiphanies there.  But I did think that their depiction of Saint George and the dragon might make parishioners feel sympathetic for the tiny little dragon that George was actively slaying above its entrance.

Basel George

 

Outside of the major Swiss towns, it feels as if the majority of the country is perched on precarious hillsides. When we camped, it seemed we were often at a loss to find flat ground!  But the high mountain roads all led to staggering vistas.

Driving more centrally, we came to the town of Interlaken.  A couple of beautiful lakes surrounded by mountains.  We were able to head up into the hills for some beautiful sunset views on slopes typically frequented by winter skiers.

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Take me home!

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