Science Needs a New Ritual
And so transcendence can take the form of blindness to differences between people and to our own biases. We assume scientists all think and believe the same things, even beyond the unequivocal data. We are all equal as scientists if we all value the same principles. And what we value comes almost entirely from Enlightenment-era Europe. This is a troubling state of affairs if we claim to strive for all humanity.
The Tribal Rite of the Strombergs (SLNewYorker)
Greg Marinovich is well known as a member of the Bang Bang Club, winning the Pulitzer Prize for photography for his work during the death throes of apartheid in South Africa. Less known are the unique (and often difficult to obtain) images documenting the often secret rituals amongst the diverse peoples of his homeland. As he writes in a recent column remembering Mandela, making the right choice can often be a difficult one.
Mandela's release in 1990 was a pretty surreal series of events for me. As a fledgling photographer I was thrilled when a British agency asked me to cover it. It was a great chance to make a break into the business, but I was conflicted. I had also managed to gain access to an otherwise secretive ceremony in the far north of the country, scheduled for the same day. The distance between Pollsmoor Prison, where the news crews of the world were camped out, and the mysterious stockade of the Modjadji was some two thousand kilometres. I had to choose between two competing once-in-a-lifetime shoots.Here is a showcase of the works he has made publicly available as prints as well as collections from his close colleague, Joao Silva*. [more inside]
Our wonderful nature is a hilarious 5-minute animation about the mating rituals of the water shrew. The action starts at around 1:30. Other gems found at the bitfilm 08 Digital Film Festival include "The post-it note prison".
Some dolphins are easy and some are murderous rapists, but all of them are into the nookie. Amazon River Dolphins are the casanovas of the cetacean order, practised in selecting the finest mud glops or algae for that special cow.
"My humble efforts to assist in the elucidation of the social condition of a distant and comparatively unknown race."
"The story of the Passion is the story of a human sacrifice, done unknowingly, and yet according to Roman ritual sacrifice structure."
Tea. More than a beverage served hot or cold, for some it is a way of life. The British are renowned for their love of tea, so it comes as no surprise that The Tea Home Page is a vast compendium of tea knowledge, games, quizzes and leaf reading. Not so trite is the Japanese tea ceremony. This site is beautiful in its calm approach to not only tea, but the digital world itself. Be sure to read A Brief History of Chanoyu. You've heard of green and black teas, but what about white tea? Lastly, I introduce you to Yogi Tea, a company that is more than a tea seller. Do yourself a favour and have a cup today.