Forest Beyond Faith

There’s something about Religion that likes to cut down whole forests to show faith (think of holy books, crosses, icons, churches, theological libraries and other distractive attractions).  I suppose for some it’s ok to destroy the natural world because they believe the Super-natural world is better.

Those of us who leave faith discover much more “abundant life”  in the beauty of living woods.

Warming Up

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Big Creek. Smoky Mountains

In the cold of Winter. . .images like this may help.

And it looks like people are “warming” to both Non-Believers and Muslims according to a new survey by Pew Research.

“Muslims and atheists — who have long been targets of prejudice in the United States — received substantially warmer ratings on the scale than they did in a survey in 2014: Muslims rose to 48 percent from 40, and atheists to 50 percent from 41.”

And this may be the main take-a-way:

“But in every case, people felt more warmly toward religious groups when they personally knew someone in that group. Compared with 2014, the percentage of Americans who said they personally knew a Muslim had increased to 45 from 38, the highest increase in personal contact for any religious group.”

Beauty Beyond the Gods

saturn-rings-nasa

NASA launched the Cassini spacecraft in 1997.  It’s been orbiting Saturn since 2004.  Now we have amazing closeup photos of the rings. . .only 746 million miles away.

“The second largest planet in our solar system, adorned with thousands of beautiful ringlets, Saturn is unique among the planets. It is not the only planet to have rings — made of chunks of ice and rock — but none are as spectacular or as complicated as Saturn’s. Like fellow gas giant Jupiter, Saturn is a massive ball of mostly hydrogen and helium.

Surrounding by 53 confirmed and nine provisional moons, Saturn is home to some of the most fascinating landscapes in our solar system. From the jets of Enceladus to the methane lakes on smoggy Titan, the Saturn system is a rich source of scientific discovery and still holds many mysteries.

The farthest planet from Earth observable by the unaided human eye, Saturn has been known since ancient times and is named for the Roman god of agriculture and wealth. The Greek equivalent was Cronos, the father of Zeus/Jupiter.” NASA