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Posts Tagged ‘nature’

My wife and I took part recently in an art expo organized locally. The theme we chose was on the bees which we thought were topical. Bees are becoming scarce and there is a proposal by our county to set apart certain meadows for cultivating bees. We exhibited our paintings at home.
Benny

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Recently was the news of a Banksy Art at Sotheby’s fetching a million in price and it shredded itself. Is it art?
Art is nature given a treatment. Without which I would not know where Monet’s waterlilies can be put under. This treatment is the manner the eye has selectively chosen what to take and what to leave out from nature and rearrange them in a canvas or a surface that is restricted. Price of a painting in Van Gogh’s lifetime was almost nil which is not the case now. The same painting but now it’s worth is spoken in terms of millions. How come? Prices follow some economic principle of supply and demand which is outside the realm of art strictly speaking but it is no longer the case. Price of a work of art is beside the point. It does not explain art.

Why speak of art in terms of dollars where the nature itself is priceless? Only a blind can appreciate what a masterpiece he is missing. Nature for a man with normal faculties unimpaired, understanding it in its entirety is a challenge. At visceral level it is an experience and refreshing as well. In familiarity he understands from so many tokens, color, texture and changeability of the visible it is a masterpiece that sprung from the soil. Besides constant renewal taking place beneath the surface calls to account not merely the ground but air, wind and many other influences. A leaf falling for a man whose sensibility is sharpened by it may say, ‘tears of nature wipe away mine own’. It has no meaning outside the nature and the person whose passing mood,- and subjective, can well identify. Art is interaction between two, the object and the eye, and is not relevant to what others may have to say on the matter of falling leaf. It may be autumn for instance. Nevertheless it elicited a response. This art is not what we shall discuss in this essay.

Art of nature is natural but art is not natural instead it must take into account of man’s nature. Where it begins or when it ends is past reckoning. For instance, his inability to take in beauty can explode as violence. One who slashes a masterpiece like Rembrandt’s Night Watch (It happened once) reveals this sad truth. It is like noxious fumes arising from a thermal vent on the ocean floor. It cannot be seen as a rule: his response to beauty is never same. Man can always rely on his rational thinking part when he denudes a rain forest and say,”More grazing fields for my cattle.” It is how man has treated the sylvan beauty which exists not only for its own and for the pleasure and well being of others. Man cannot help but is compelled to react to the beauty. He is before Nature that has come into being without so much as ‘By your leave’ but respond at least by littering in some cases.
For many beauty of nature is beyond his intellect to digest or to recreate, All that he can understand is worth of dollar and cents. So it must be reduced to a level he can find pleasure. No one in right mind will call that is art. Art is for man whose taste (as in the case of nature ability to refine man’s sensibilities) requires effort, It has to do with his study of the world about him and in his ability to isolate everyday objects he comes across, rearrange in order to make a connection is a good place to begin with. Whoever has seen the grid plan of New York with its avenues and streets cannot fail to see in Mondrian’s paintings some familiarity. Such familiarity does not happen in a vacuum. Mind has to be cultivated to leave its natural prejudices out and take a fresh look with open mind. It takes effort.

Man’s outrage against brute Power and its naked aggression can invite an artist to express in canvasses as diverse as from Goya and Picasso. Man’s diversity widens as his experience and his dedication to express in its truthfulness is the religion of artist. He adopts different forms each of which cannot be accidental. It is in holding your emotional reserves and expressing in lines, colors and patterns what holds everything together in a canvas. It is not what nature has to worry over. Art of man is cultivated as Nature is not, in order to impress others to view in a particular manner is art. In this nature is diffuse while man is particular. His limitations impose on him certain restrictions which for the same reason his completed work must be elevated into realm of art. Its specific gravity runs throughout the canvas evenly so examine any part the brushstrokes his choice of color palette or symbols- his vision to give all a common label, it speaks truth. His works can be quantified but the sum of it is far less than it presents. His art is such nature of art allows him to exclude all that is irrelevant from his work, After it is behind him there is nothing further he can do but what the viewer brings makes it come alive. Such incompleteness make art as valid as conversation. It is as intelligent as giving full attention in any conversation to subject matter and the person without letting mind wander.
Benny

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“With the pure thou wilt shew thyself pure; and with the froward thou wilt shew thyself unsavoury (2 S.22:27; Ps.18:26)”. “As for such as turn aside unto their crooked ways, the LORD shall lead them forth with the workers of iniquity:..(Ps.125:5)”.

God prospered Laban, in visible terms, which he could appreciate. ‘For I learned by experience that the Lord hath blessed me for thy sake.’ Wealth is a blessing but Laban did not have the insight to seek it from God of Jacob. Instead he wanted it at his terms and pressing his advantage further. He pressed Jacob, ‘Appoint me thy wages, and I will give it (30:28).’ Behind his professed enthusiasm to pay wages we have on record that he had deceived him and changed his wages ten times. The face of greed has never changed neither then or now. Only that now people like Laban have become organized. When he says, ‘Corporations are people’ what he means is that he shall have the option to change wages and keep profits most unto who he chooses with excuse of bonus for the top management, operational costs, depreciation cost, sundries ad infinitum.

Here we see Jacob bearing witness, “But the God of my Father hath been with me.” How God took away the cattle of Laban and gave to him is a demonstration of the old adage, ‘The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.’

Laban agreed to let Jacob separate speckled and spotted cattle and all the brown cattle among the sheep, and the spotted and specked among the goats for his hire. Laban’s common sense smelled a sure thing. How often do speckled and spotted cattle are seen in nature? They are rare freaks of nature according to his understanding.

‘Jacob took him rods of green poplar hazel and chestnut tree; and pilled white strakes in them, and made the white appear…And the flocks conceived before the rods, and brought forth cattle ring straked, speckled, and spotted (Ge.30:32-42)’. The feebler were Laban’s, and the stronger were Jacob’s (vs.42). When God had decided to turn the tables on him Nature took the cues and made it happen. Palimpsestic memory of Nature works according to divine Plan for His glory. In order to make it simpler, consider our sense of vision: how we look at things and see them are not simple. Eyes see but in order to make sense requires areas in the brain to process the impressions. Laws of Nature know her sovereign Lord. Before I immigrated to Europe I had no inkling what a Citroën would look like from a stream of automobiles in a highway. After buying one and soon I saw only Citroën in tangled rush hour traffic. How come? Memory made it so natural. While we discuss the palimpsestic memory of Nature as indicative of glory of God we need understand Nature always works to glorify God. Man in his conceit often fails to know God in his daily lives and such failure to glorify God on a wider canvas finds substitutes. Status symbols for those who are in a hurry and we see the consequences around us (Ro.1:20-21).

For God’s children even what seems at first disappointments are fitting out wings for closer walk with God.

Benny

 

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The Spirit in emphasizing the sovereignty of God always places Nature as subservient to His Will. Psalmist rightly praises Him clothed with honor and majesty. “Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment”. It is to this the Spirit refers in the second chapter of the Book of Genesis “And they (Adam and Eve) were both naked, the man and his wife and were not ashamed (Ge.2:25).” His creation acquires as it were the glory of God. Such a transfer is scattered throughout the narrative. Before God made a covenant with Abraham God commanded him to offer him a sacrifice and what should be included was given in detail. Abraham after having done accordingly waited. By sundown ‘a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him (Ge.15:12).’ Presence of God renders the place where he stood project supra real emotional intensity and Abraham could feel it, . We see similarly at a time Jacob is fleeing from Esau his elder brother whom he worsted twice unfairly, and at Bethel God revealed a vision to him. He woke up and was certain the Lord was present there. “And he was afraid, and said, “How dreadful is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven (Ge.28:18).”From whence did he acquire this knowledge? Foreknowledge is often transferred, invisible things of God to help us. The Spirit guides us in all truth and it is a gift God has assured us. It is the glory of God that gave the earth a form and to His children serves as guideposts as it were in their ministry. This we see in the Acts of the Apostles St Paul changed his plans since the Spirit had forbidden him to go to Asia. “During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, Come over to Macedonia and help us.(Ac.16:9)”
Natural laws and divine laws run parallel so God’s sovereignty ensures Nature shall manifest His glory whenever it is called upon. This is palimpsestic memory of Nature.

Such memory establishes the blessing of God over man whom He chooses as instrument regardless of his merit, and it works for the greater glory of God. Nature acknowledges the glory of God as His due. Let us consider an example to illustrate palimpsestic memory. The Children of Israel under the leading of Moses complained of not having water to drink. We have a commentary from St Paul and  “and drank the same spiritual drink; for they (the children of Israel) drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ (1 Cor.10:4-NIV). We are examining the second instance when God commanded Moses to speak to the rock. But he smote it instead, therefore not honoring Him before Israel. The rock did as was in the earlier instance. The rock gushed forth since palimpsestic memory of the rock acknowledged what significance it held. It was the Spiritual rock that accompanied them. Christ was that rock.

Here is another instance. What was the miracle of the withered fig tree? It failed to recognize the Son of man was exempt from the curse of God. When Adam and Eve disobeyed God he told Adam thus: “Cursed is the ground for thy sake (Ge,3:12)”. When Jesus approached the tree and found nothing thereon, but leaves only he cursed it and it was thus withered away directly.(Mt.21:19-20).

Benny

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This is a poem written by my grand daughter

“You are a force of nature,
a child of the universe”
But so are natural disasters
and I can safely say
that I am more of an earthquake
than a light summer rain.

Emma-Lidwij

You can follow her poems on Instagram.
under her name: emmalidewij.

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Is Trump in office

synonym for disasters?

Flood, Fire,Blood make news

Benny

 

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Muhammad Shaheer Niazi 17 managed to produce an electric honeycomb: physicists have known the phenomenon of electric honeycomb for decades. It occurs when a layer of oil is placed in an electric field between a pointy electrode and a flat one – and the instability caused by the build up of ions applies pressure to the surface of the oil – creating a beautiful pattern that looks like a honeycomb, or a stained glass window.

The high school student from Pakistan’s city of Lahore managed to photograph the movement of ions that forms the honeycomb besides recording the heat found on the surface of oil. No one has done this before. According to Niazi, “Electric honeycomb perfectly demonstrates how everything in this universe is seeking equilibrium. Its hexagonal shape is the most stable structure.”

In this case, he says, two electrodes are used; a pointy needle on top of a flat surface with a thin layer of oil on it. High voltage from the needle makes ions bombard the surface of oil, on their way to meet the ground electrode.

“It is just like lightning striking the surface of earth,” he says. But oil is a non-conductor. The ions start accumulating on the surface of oil. As the pressure increases, they create a depression and manage to meet the ground electrode.

In the process the surface of oil loses its shape, something it does not want. So within no time, honeycomb-like hexagonal structures appear on the surface of oil.

“The amount of energy that goes in equals the energy that comes out and thus the flow of electricity is efficient. This way equilibrium is restored,”

What is the order? Nature has laws and these are established so each entity has a role and several interactions simultaneously taking place between atmosphere ocean and land create a system, carbon or oxygen cycle for example. Such equilibrium however is temporary. Exchange of energy from one medium to other similarly points out to something else.  Conservation of energy owes to the nature of energy that cannot be destroyed  or created. Thus when we speak of Order and nature serving it by so many laws we need understand there is a moral imperative implied. So many wars each waged to redress some perceived injustice  is how we explain the rationale of war. Even so the Order restoring justice in calling every individual to account is quite natural.(Ack: 

benny

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