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It takes the Mariner time to be reborn after his sin against the albatross and thus nature herself. The Mariner needs time to suffer and toil before he can understand the miracle of life. The slimy Sea Snakes would not have made an impression on the Mariner before his offence to the natural world. It is only through his metaphorical death and rebirth that he sees the beauty of the Sea Snakes and all the natural world has to offer.