Flora in Focus

Orchids  [Flickr page]
Consider the lilies how they grow: They toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
—Jesus of Nazareth, The Gospel of Matthew
Early Autumn Leaf  [Flickr page]
Experiencing the present purely is being emptied and hollow; you catch grace as a man fills his cup under a waterfall.
—Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek
Pandanus on Molokai  [Flickr page]
It is hard work to climb down out of the trees, walk upright, and build a viable global civilization when you start with technology that is made of rocks and sticks and fur.
—Sam Harris, Lecture “Death and the Present Moment
Backlit Bearberry  [Flickr page]
It seemed strangely distinct, this undefiled dawn sun. It had almost a smell, as of warm stone, a sharp dust of photons streaming down through space. Each grass-blade was pearled with vapor. On the slopes above his path the trunks of the ashes and sycamores, a honey gold in the oblique sunlight, erected their dewy green vaults of young leaves; there was something mysteriously religious about them, but of a religion before religion; a druid balm, a green sweetness over all.
—John Fowles, The French Lieutenant’s Woman
Cedar Branch up Close  [Flickr page]
Nature, so far as we can discern, without passion and without intention, forms, transforms, and retransforms forever. She neither weeps nor rejoices. She produces man without purpose, and obliterates him without regret.
—Robert Green Ingersoll, “Lecture on Gods”
Foreground Flowers  [Flickr page]
[T]his terror and darkness of the mind
  Not by the sun’s rays, nor the bright shafts of day,
  Must be dispersed, as is most necessary,
  But by the face of nature and her laws.
—Lucretius, On the Nature of Things, tr. by Ronald Melville
Budding Branch  [Flickr page]
My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land; the fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.
Song of Songs
Reddening Oregon Grape  [Flickr page]
There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.
—Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species
Flowering Plant at Palouse Falls  [Flickr page]
One of the most refreshing ideas to come out of existentialism (perhaps the only one) is that we are free to interpret and reinterpret the meaning of our lives.
—Sam Harris, Free Will
Fern in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park  [Flickr page]
Jesus said the meek inherit the earth, but we haven’t inherited much from them, genetically. Rather, it is the “disproportionate replicators” who left their mark on us, our forebears whose drive and passion got their DNA immortalized into children who would, with enough luck as well as drive and passion of their own, continue down the line. You won’t find many celibate shrinking violets in your ancestry.
—Robert M. Price and Edwin A. Suominen, Evolving out of Eden
A Valiant Attempt  [Flickr page]
If asked the question how the universe came into existence without a creator, I would answer the question by asking another, how did the creator come into existence? And my question would certainly be as difficult of solution as the other.
—E.C., “Why I Am An Infidel” (1903),
reprinted in Thomas Lawson, Letters from an Atheist Nation
See also these blog postings with some of my favorite plant photography: Invocation to Venus and Walking Upright.
Click on individual images to enlarge, or check out my most “interesting” photos on Flickr. All are Copyright © 2013-14 Edwin A. Suominen. You may freely use them for non-commercial purposes, with attribution, under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.