The Garden of Cosmic Speculation


In an attempt to shake off a major case of cabin fever, I went to my local botanic gardens to take a walk. In their exhibition building was a pictoral showing of “The Garden of Cosmic Speculation” created by renown architect Charles Jencks and his late wife Maggie. This is an amazing piece of work and I was blown away with it’s concept and design.

“This book tells the story of one of the most original and important gardens of the 21st century, created by the internationally celebrated architectural critic and designer Charles Jencks. He and his late wife started working on a landscape, that, after her death in 1995, continued to grow into a larger project, an ongoing speculation on the basic elements of nature. Covering thirty acres in the Borders area of Scotland, the Garden of Cosmic Speculation is conceived as a place to explore certain fundamental aspects of the universe.

What are atoms made of and how should we conceive of them? How does DNA make up a living organism and why is it essential to celebrate it in a garden? In dialogue with eminent physicists, cosmologists, and biologists, including Paul Davies, Lee Smolin, and Steven Rose, Charles Jencks has created a series of new, expansive, visual metaphors that challenge misleading and frequently misunderstood concepts, such as the ‘Big Bang’ and the ‘Selfish Gene.’

(Preview of the book “The Garden of Cosmic Speculation” via Google Books)

(Charles Jencks website. Article on “The Garden of Cosmic Speculation” via Recreating Eden)

From Pagan Deity to Modern Sex Symbol – Snegurochka Revealed

“The Snow Maiden, or Snegurochka, is a core part of winter celebrations in Russia. She partners Russia’s Santa – Father Frost – helping him with his New Year duties. Her image is familiar to everyone across the country. But her origins remain shrouded in mystery, even to Russians. The character of Snegurochka actually dates back to pagan Slavic religion. She symbolised the change of seasons, the transition from winter to spring.”

(via Russia Today)

(More links about The Snow Maiden here, here and here)

Seismic Symphony

Due to his failing sight, Western Washington geology professor David Engebretson is teaching a class he developed pioneering the study of earth science in a unique manner – using sound. He has also created audio that is analogous to the history of Earth’s magnetic field reversals. Take a listen to the short clip NPR. He talks through it, but makes insightful points about what musical patterns he can hear, and what that may mean in terms of our geological history.


Amputee Sleipnir Lamb born in modern Midgard

From WFTV Florida’s “Strange News Photos”, check out this picture of a seven-legged lamb. The lamb was born on a farm in Metheven, on the South Island of New Zealand, where the most recent silver-screen incarnation of The Lord of the Rings was filmed after Peter Jackson decided it was the best location to emulate his vision of J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic Middle Earth. Gandalf/ Odin was quoted as saying, “The only thing worse than the stretch is the title.”

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