Friday, October 12, 2012

The Tale of the Spider

This spider has been living with us for several months and it's an extraordinary creature. It can spin the most intricate webs, move with astonishing speed and devour quarry many times its size. The spider is very big in symbolism and of course there's is a Greek myth associated with spiders. Arachne was a mortal Lydian girl who, due to her spinning prowess, ran foul of Goddess Athene by impressing the Gods. Annoyed by the Gods' love for mortal women, Athene struck Lydia with her shuttle and the poor girl tried to hang herself. But Athene saved her by turning her into a spider. In consequence she was condemned to dangle forever at the end of a thread. It demonstrates that you shouldn't challenge the Gods. To do so is to reverse the order of things and the punishment is the endless creation of a facsimile of the Heavens. While I was researching spiders, I came across an odd fact. I had wondered whether spiders' webs were made of fractal patterns and found that they were not. However, I discovered that upon the administration of minute doses of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), spiders can spin a web that includes the repeated detail of fractals! But spiders are often seen negatively, In film noir, the female protagonist is often a spider woman., She portrays a predatory (and duplicitous) image of the female, continually trying to ensnare and devour male prey. And it's something of a pity that come Hallowe'en, spiders will be represented as horrifying. I'll speak up for my spider - she's been performing excellent duties with insects and wasps. She's much admired and in turn shows no fear of me. I guess we agree to co-exist!