Bill Dunson, born in rural Georgia, skipped 12th grade and went directly to Yale. He subsequently received his PhD in Zoology from the University of Michigan. Bill is Professor Emeritus of Pennsylvania State University, thanks to a career spent teaching and researching the physiological ecology and ecotoxicology of reptiles, amphibians and fish. Bill has dedicated his life to learning and sharing his knowledge with others. Join him as he observes our better nature on the Island, his newest home.
Sunday, April 20, 2014
Images of the Crucifix Seen in Nature
Crucifix image on catfish skull
We commonly encounter natural objects which have been interpreted by early Spanish missionaries and even some modern-day observers to resemble the Christian crucifix symbol and associated circumstances.
For example the inside of the skull of a marine catfish bears a striking resemblance to the crucifix.
Crucifix orchid with blue porterweed
The crucifix orchid has even been named for a similar resemblance. The famous passion flowers named for the passion of Christ are unusually shaped and apparently designed for pollination by large bees. But various parts of the flower have been considered symbols of Christian theology; the pointed leaves represented the holy lance, the tendrils of the vines represented the whips used to punish Jesus, the ten petals and sepals represented the ten faithful apostles, the radial filaments represented the crown of thorns, the ovary and receptacle represented the Holy Grail, the three stigmas represented the three nails, the five anthers represented the five wounds, the red flower color represented blood, and blue flower color represented heaven.