Have you ever noticed that Nature’s God abhors straight lines? Just look around you at Nature, and you will see that there are no straight lines in nature. Everything in the natural world is curved. Straight lines belong to items of human manufacture. When explorers and archaeologists are searching for signs of human habitation, from an airplane or on the ground, they seek out straight lines, like city walls, house outlines, or streets. Anything in a straight line signals human origins. Years ago, Rabbi Daniel Lapin brought to our attention the contrast between bricks (building materials with straight lines), and pebbles (natural rocks with curves). He told us that God’s creatures, humans, are pebbles-no two are alike, and they do not fit closely together like bricks; and cautioned us never to think of any person as a brick, which could be substituted for any other brick in a wall, but to think of every person as an individual, with his own set of curves.
So, Nature’s Curves first. In my own back yard, I have some Japanese Maple trees, and they are still without leaves. You can see easily that there are no really straight lines in all the tree branches!
Have you ever seen a cloud with straight lines? Nope! They are all sorts of curves. These are two views of clouds, from the ground, and from above
And speaking of those pebbles, near Tumwater Falls on the Deschutes River in Olympia, Washington, I found a round hole, filled with water-tumbled pebbles. No two pebbles are alike, and no straight lines there. The hole, on the other hand, was drilled by men, and probably held supports for the long-gone power plant that was along the river in the 19th century.
Plants, of course, are all cures. Especially these water-lilies. Tessellating the plane with curves, though not perfectly.
I have always been very fond of the shrub-steppe terrain around the Columbia and Yakima Rivers in Central Washington State. The roads were built to follow the curves of the rolling hills.
That road is so much fun to drive!
Now, for some man-made curves. At a local store, we discovered a full line of bottled cocktails that are actually very good. I was taken with this colorful display, with all the bottles lined up on the shelf.
And back in my backyard, the float in the round birdbath, with the reflections of the trees just over the (straight-line) fence.
And the Great Wheel on the Seattle waterfront.
Of course, I find all sorts of curves in the factory where I work, both raw materials and components.
The cutting heads that generate all those shavings are straight lines, but the shavings have such pleasing curves!
Finally, back to my yard. My little hydrangea is showing some spring growth. See how the stems are curved!
Last year, the flower heads grew too heavy for the stems, so this year I added some stakes. I may have to strengthen those stakes soon.
Here’s the link to Tina’s original post.
2 thoughts on “Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #191: Curves”
Wonderful examples of course, but most of all I loved the Rabbi’s story – I’ll definitely keep that one in my heart.
Tyrants treat their subjects as bricks.