Dazzled by nature's beauty

By | Thursday, July 21, 2011 Leave a Comment


I was making a pot of coffee this morning when I was stopped in my tracks by the view out my window.

I am always fascinated by the fact that humans find things in nature beautiful - even when those things have forms and functions entirely unrelated to us. A spider makes a web to catch insects, not to please people with its geometry. Dew forms on the web because of the laws of chemistry and physics. Sunlight sparkles off the dewdrops, again due to physics, not through a desire to dazzle the human eye.

Enjoying the flowers of a newly developed rose or a tulip straight from Holland is no great surprise. Horticulturalists worked hard to hybridize those flowers to appeal to us. That we find beauty in the unadorned natural world is less clear - though it too makes perfect sense. Assuming that you believe the theory of evolution (which is a safe assumption, given that 100% of credible evidence supports it,) it is clear that everything that has made the natural world what it is, has also made us what we are. The forces that created nature also created homo-sapiens. Form and function, symmetry, color, the signals of ripeness and poison, the scents that attract or repel - all of these things are built in to every living thing on earth.

So really, it is no great surprise to be dazzled by dewdrops on a spider's web in the morning. Still, it is no less a delight.
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