Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Study The Fox



virginia said...

most of us are so removed from nature, and the hunt for food.

that was a 59 second thrill.

Dr. Mel said...

Wow, such care. I wonder if its "tiny prey" can also hear the fox above. If so, they probably hold very still.

Bix said...

So raw and beautiful and devastating.

I bet humans were capable of this, something like this, at some point in their evolutionary past.

Anonymous said...

what an amazing and thrilling vision

Ben P. DaSalt said...

Brings to mind a few choice quotes:

"The total amount of suffering per year in the natural world is beyond all decent contemplation. During the minute that it takes me to compose this sentence, thousands of animals are being eaten alive, many others are running for their lives, whimpering with fear, others are slowly being devoured from within by rasping parasites, thousands of all kinds are dying of starvation, thirst, and disease. It must be so. If there ever is a time of plenty, this very fact will automatically lead to an increase in the population until the natural state of starvation and misery is restored.”

— Richard Dawkins (River Out of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life)

“Darwin recognized the total horror of the suffering in nature. It was one of the things that actually made him lose his faith. But he also released that it’s not just a fact that it happens it’s intrinsic to natural selection that it must happen. When you look at a beautiful animal like a cheetah that appears to be beautifully designed for something, like a cheetah is amazingly well-designed apparently for catching gazelles and gazelles are amazingly well-designed for escaping from cheetahs. But they are the end products of a sort of evolutionary arms race in which thousands — millions — of animals have died.”

“The shaping, the carving of the shape of a cheetah or a gazelle has come about through millions of unsuccessful gazelles being caught and the successful ones making it through, only to be caught later probably but after reproducing and passing on the genes that helped them to escape, so the sheer numbers of deaths that lie behind the sculpting of these beautiful creatures is horrifying and at the same time has a sort of savage beauty.”

— Richard Dawkins (Q&A at book lecture replayed on Radiolab: An Equation for Good, first 3 minutes, covers both quotations. Also further examines ideas of cruelty and kindness in nature.)

“Nature here is vile and base. I wouldn't see anything erotical here. I would see fornication and asphyxiation and choking and fighting for survival and. growing and just rotting away. Of course, there's a lot of misery. But it is the same misery that is all around us. The trees here are in misery, and the birds are in misery. I don't think they sing. They just screech in pain.

“It's a land that God, if he exists has created in anger. It's the only land where creation is unfinished yet. Taking a close look at what's around us there is some sort of a harmony. It is the harmony of overwhelming and collective murder. And we in comparison to the articulate vileness and baseness and obscenity of all this jungle, we in comparison to that enormous articulation - we only sound and look like badly pronounced and half-finished sentences out of a stupid suburban novel, a cheap novel. We have to become humble in front of this overwhelming misery and overwhelming fornication, overwhelming growth and overwhelming lack of order. Even the stars up here in the sky look like a mess. There is no harmony in the universe. We have to get acquainted to this idea that there is no real harmony as we have conceived it. But when I say this, I say this all full of admiration for the jungle. It is not that I hate it, I love it. I love it very much. But I love it against my better judgment.”

— Werner Herzog (Burden of Dreams, the accent and intonation really makes the difference.)

Bix said...

I just watched the Herzog clip. You're right, it was worth a watch for his intonation. He's dark, but I agree with much he says ... about the jungleness of the universe. Still, I do see harmony, in addition to the "mess." And although he says, "There is no harmony in the universe," he also says, "Taking a close look at what's around us there is some sort of a harmony."