Yosemite National Park, California // A classic view of one of the most-photographed places on earth.
I know it was a love-it-or-hate-it sort of affair, but when The Tree of Life came out several years ago, I saw it in theaters and, well, loved it. The way it visually tried to work out our own little place in the universe, how our tiny lives can matter in the face of the whole of creation, was very much on the same page with my own way of thinking. But it presented the idea the idea that the Way of Nature is distinct and opposite from the Way of Grace. Whereas the Way of Nature is, as Hobbes put it, brutish, nasty, and short, the way of grace is gentle, loving, and infinite. But I don't know, when I see the interdependence, interconnection, efficiency, and downright beauty of this world on which we live, I feel inclined to disagree. The honey bee pollinates the flower, the flower turns into a fruit that feeds other animals, and at death they donate their remains back to the soil creatures that keep the flower alive. We're a trillion trillion organisms all responsible for keeping each other alive, and, with that thought, it's hard not to think that nature provides about as much Grace as a body could ask for.
An American Basket Flower (Centaurea americana) is a Texas-native plant that's a favorite among pollenators, a fact which can be seen clearly in other images of this flower.