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Thursday, 16 June 2016

Not all Fun for the Dung Fly

Fascinating piece by Phil Gates in the Guardian on the dung fly.

The first thing that took me was the description of the fly eating hoverflies "like hotdogs". I presume therefore that there is a really posh species in the Cotswolds that eats hoverflies with a knife and fork.

Then the other thing is the way  fungus takes over the dung fly and turns it into a light-seekingg robot, climbing up to the top of grass stems to attract other flies to the same fungusy fate. Nasty.

This is a strange and wonderful world. Where  the wonders are not always of the fluffy bunny or beautiful sunset kind. Darwin said he thought the ichneumon wasp was a challenge to the concept of a good creator. But then animals getting munched on by other animals was nothing new, even in Darwin's day.

For me, the rationality of the universe reflects that of its creator. I don't need fairies at the bottom of the garden - though they would be nice - or miracles happening all around - though that would be fun. Just one big miracle is enough to convince me that that God also walked this earth - and scattered a few smaller ones in his wake.

And in seeing God in nature and revelation, I can see God as bigger, stranger and weirder than the image we sometimes try to put  frame on. Come siblings, let us like fungus-infected dung flies ever climb towards the light.

You know, I may not use that as a sermon illustration. I think it might be Pelagian.

1 comment :

  1. I think perhaps I should get out more. I initially read 'agape' in this sentence from Phil Gates' piece as the NT Greek word for love, and was a bit confused!

    "Ahead of us swallows were already skimming the grass, mouths agape, taking their fill of flies that rose from the cowpats and nettles."

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