Leading you up the garden Path: Flower Portraits. As plentiful as the cosmos

 

 

Over at Jude’s spot, her garden photography theme for September is Flower Portraits.

The Cosmos returns every year and requires no effort on my part.

Self sufficient. I like that a lot.

 

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One of my favorite flowers, and not just mine either!

 

Ark.

Leading you up the garden Path: Flower Portraits. Red-dy or not?

Over at Jude’s spot, her garden photography theme for September is Flower Portraits. Again, with some nifty computer wizardry.

Here’s are some red blooms I am rather fond of.

The Bottle Brush Tree and the Coral Tree and the Geranium.

 

 

 

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Leading you up the garden path. Flower Portraits

Over at Jude’s spot, her garden photography theme for September is Flower Portraits. With a bit of computer wizardry – the computer’s not mine – I made this a bit more literal with the presentation.

Here’s a few of my favourite flowers, Fuchsias, and I even managed to include a bee in one shot.

 

 

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Thanks, as always, to Jude for the challenge. Loads of fun.

Ark.

Leading you up the garden path. Painted Lady

 

Of the 23 species of butterfly I have managed to photograph at our spot, the Painted Lady is probably the most frequent visitor.

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Feeding on a Gazania.

The Painted lady (V. cardui) is a large butterfly (wing span 5–9 cm (2.0–3.5 in)) identified by the black and white corners of its mainly deep orange, black-spotted wings. It has five white spots in the black forewing tips and while the orange areas may be pale here and there, there are no clean white dots in them. The hindwings carry four small submarginal eyespots on dorsal and ventral sides. Those on the dorsal side are black, but in the summer morph sometimes small blue pupils are present in some.

 

Leading you up the garden path. Bee -ing there.

Or … subtitled, thank goodness for digital cameras.

There are five species of bee that visit our spot. Well, five that I know of, and I have managed to photograph  each of them.

The Amegilla bee is known as a Solitary bee, and as its name implies, it spends most of its life alone. They are not aggressive but will sting for defense.

Although they do not produce honey they are important pollinators of plants and crops.

In our garden I have seen them visit the lavender, the plectranthus and the fuchsia.

Here’s an interesting 2 minute read about Solitary bees.

Amegilla bees are, for me, very difficult to photograph as, unlike many other species,they rarely seem to land to feed, and they zip through the plants they visit at a much faster rate than an ordinary Honey bee for example.

Trying to anticipate where they will be next is the key, so while it is buzzing by one flower I try to hold the camera steady next to an adjacent flower. Rarely do I get it right, hence a ten minute session spent squatting by the lavender for example, is more often than not fruitless and produces nothing but a string of blurs or beeless frames, and the bees will eventually leave. But on occasion the bee will oblige, and I’ll get lucky.

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Amegilla Bee at Lavender.

 

Ark

 

 

 

 

Leading you up the garden path. Dropwing.

It’s been close to two years since I first saw the male of this species of dragonfly in the garden. It was perched on a poppy seed pod cooling its wings.

So you can imagine my heart skipped a beat or two when this red flash flew right by me as I was walking by the pond this afternoon.

At first, it perched on an old reed stem in the water; too far away for a decent photograph. But then, as luck would have it, when I threw some food in the water for the fish, it took off, only to land on one of the bamboo canes used to support last seasons tomato crop.

And he seemed not in the least apprehensive as I approached.

Summer is on its way!

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Trithemis kirbyi, also known as the orange-winged dropwing, red-veined dropwing, or Kirby’s dropwing.

Ark.

Why Christians are Christians.

“As I have already stated…God chose me… Eternal life in heaven is the benefit of being graced with salvation…”

“ …the good news is that those who hear and obey the Gospel of Christ, are graced with eternal life in heaven… Yes you must believe with ALL of your heart, mind, and soul…”

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I feel fairly confident that, irrespective how fundamentalist the believer, this is the real prize (sic) for remaining a Christian.

However, I maintain the primary reasons for most people becoming Christian are indoctrination and culture.

Yet the promise of eternal life after death is counterbalanced by the threat of eternal torture for not believing.

None of this is breaking news to the non-believer, but it is the first time on my blog that a Christian has openly acknowledged that they believe because they expect eternal life. ( and no doubt (?) maintain a fear of eternal torture.)

The insidiousness of this belief aptly demonstrates why indoctrination is crucial; if there were any truth to the former – eternal life and the supposed wonderful benefits of this option – then the heinous threat of eternal  torture would not be necessary.  Logic tells us that the fabulous benefits of committed belief would be enough  of an incentive without the need to threaten an individual for non – belief.

No person responds in a truly positive manner when the threat of violence hangs over their head, and the continual reinforcement of how worthless they are, neither child nor adult, and  there are more than enough examples of the damage this does, to individuals, families, communities and whole societies.

Of course, none of this even touches on the confirmed evidence that refutes almost all of the bible, demonstrates its fraudulent nature and the revelation that much of it is little more than geopolitical myth.

But at least we have it in black and white  from a Christian the core reason why they willingly accept Christianity; why they have been convinced or convinced themselves.

As none were ever reasoned into belief it is unlikely they will be reasoned out of belief.

But maybe if one or two just pause to consider?

 

Ark

 

 

Leading you up the garden path: Out of Moth Balls?

Blog Pal, Pete Hillman, who lives over in the UK, which is my old stomping ground, is a photographer, and a darn good one to boot.

He has a post up of a moth this morning, so I thought …. anything you can do, I can at least have a go at!

This little beauty is called a Spoladea recurvalis.

They are quite common and widespread but this was the first time I had encountered this species. It was fluttering dangerously close to a web on a glass panel of a door so I gently cupped it in my hand then, with camera in the other opened my hand slowly and clicked away.

Afterwards, I took the moth outside and allowed it to crawl onto a tree branch.

I managed a couple more shots and then it flew away.

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Oh, and here’s a shot of that spotless Ladybird I mentioned.

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Ark.

Open Question to All Christians

There are a thousand and one books, arguments, debates, philosophies on  Jesus of Nazareth. Seemingly endless debates about  God, Hell,morals, doctrines, Church, religious history, archaeology and evolution.

Most, if not all, end in frustration with little or no apparent resolution.

But one question seems never to be asked directly of Christians.

And I want to ask it now.

 

Why Are You A Christian?

 

Open Challenge to any former -Christian.

Okay, I did state on my previous Challenge to Christians post that if no satisfactory answer to the two questions below was forthcoming – and there most certainly was not a satisfactory answer – then I would open up the challenge.

I would like to invite former Christians to please explain the following:

The Trinity

&

How Jesus of Nazareth is understood to be the creator of the universe.

You are to consider you are explaining to someone who has only a basic understanding of the Christian religion, ie, me, and I am aware of what the Trinity is claimed to be and who Jesus of Nazareth was.

Furthermore, the explanations have to be in a straightforward manner that not only demonstrates you have a comprehensive grasp of both concepts and also that anyone reading your explanation would be able to grasp the concepts immediately.

There are no prizes only a grudging admiration if I consider you have pulled it off.

Also, if you feel more comfortable , write explanations on your own blogs and post a link.

 

Ark.

And to put you in the right frame of mind …

 

Best of luck!

Paula’s Thursday’s Special. Pick a Word.

Paula offers the choice of five words for which participants must supply a photographic interpretation.

As Paula posted a photograph for each word, so I thought I would at least try four out of the five.

 

Here we go …

bells

Companionable:  friendly and sociable.

”Ring me when you get a bit older, okay?”

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Clandestine: secret, covert, furtive.

Marmalade trying to organize a fish supper.

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Time Sensitive: Ludwig van after a night on the tiles in Portugal.

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Burgeoning: Another word for burgeoning is (to) mushroom. I could only find a toadstool.

Ark

Check out Paula’s blog and some of her great photos at Lost in Translation.

What’s another name for a schizophrenic? Answer: Jesus of Nazareth

And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.” John 11:41-42

 

So if he was the god, Yahweh, who the hell was he praying to?