A Darwinian miracle!

Well, if they can have Mother Teresa in a bun, or Jesus in a tortilla, we can have an image of Charles Darwin in a tree.


I fear it might be a case of mistaken identity, though—it looks more like Karl Marx to me.


  1. says

    The grudge match begins…

    In one corner, the Darwin stump, the other glass window Jesus. In just seconds Darwin stump smashes through glass window Jesus. The horror! But what’s this Virgin Mary toast and Mother Teresa bagel have flown into the ring. No worries, Darwin stump steam rolls them with ease.

    Final Count:
    Figment of the imagination based on reality – 3
    Figment of the imagination based on figments of the imagination – 0
    (The MT I keep hearing abot is more myth than anything.)

  2. Paul G. Brown says

    I’m with Blake.

    But then, I’ve not paid much attention to this kind of thing since a friend of mine told me he saw Our Lady of Guadalupe in a Hustler photo spread.

  3. says

    Looks more like Dennett to me, although I can also discern a small bear’s head, a deer’s head in profile, the first two strokes of Zorro’s mark, and a series of Martian canals.

  4. ctenotrish, FCD, PhD says

    I see a urochordate (siphons are at upper left) with the not-yet-resorbed tail (darker patch of wood) at bottom.

  5. says

    I’ve not paid much attention to this kind of thing since a friend of mine told me he saw Our Lady of Guadalupe in a Hustler photo spread.
    Posted by: Paul G. Brown

    Huh. I’d’ve figured she’d be a little old for a Hustler centerfold.

    I guess some men will fantasize about any old virgin…

  6. Jeff says

    Chopra takes on Dawkins!

    The God Delusion? Part 1

    Deepak Chopra says:

    Dawkins has written extensively on evolution, holds a chair at Oxford University, and speaks out loudly against any possibility that God is real. He makes many points to support his claim that religion is nonsense and that there isn’t the slightest shred of rational proof for God, miracles, the soul, etc. Since this is such an important issue, I want to argue against him point by point in some detail.

    1. Science is the only valid way to gain knowledge. Nothing about God is needed to explain the world. Eventually science will uncover all mysteries. Those that it can’t explain don’t exist.

    @#@#$@#%@#%@#%$@#$%#%@%@#$!Blah blah blah ba…..

    This is only the outline of an argument against science as the only valid route to knowledge. Before going on to Dawkins’ other points, let’s see what responders have to say.



  7. Matt T. says

    I thought it looked like the profile of an Imperial Stormtrooper Helmet upon first glance. I have absolutely no idea why, though.

  8. lo says

    hmm looks like a trunk in the wood to me; clearly cut with a chainsaw. I could do some fancy forestry forensics – that is if i would actually know anything about it ;)

    But its interesting to see our human pattern/shape recognition at its finest. Imagine the same task being carried out by a computer program.

  9. lo says

    @Matt T.: Heck yeah, i saw that as well, along with a slight fracture!!! The power of the brain amazes me each time! I mean judging by the mere informational data that is passed along there is almost nothing to go with.
    This should serve as a new test for artificial intelligence :D

  10. stogoe says

    I’m seeing some trendy costumed superhero, myself, tilted at about 30 degrees counterclockwise. I just can’t make myself see the stormtrooper or darwin..

  11. says

    I don’t why I bother PZ. I go to all the trouble of trying to make my drawings actually look like something, and people see a dog’s butt or a water stain or a tree trunk like this and it seems to look like Darwin or Jesus or Mary to them? All those wasted years when I could have been just doodling or pissing in the snow for fun and profit!

  12. says

    It’s Santa. And, of course, that reminds me of the Steven Wright question: “What did Jesus ever do for Santa Claus on his birthday?”

  13. KC says

    I’m with Introbang, except I don’t see a seal, I see a rhesus monkey hunched over hugging something, perhaps a delicious banana, rather tight. Sadly, the deity responsible for this manifestation is a crummy artist.

  14. llewelly says

    Uh… I see a bald hominid with an unusually large cranium, a disturbingly skull-like visage, a very large and strangely placed ear, and an amazingly long tongue emerging from its nose. I am confident that natural selection, sexual selection, and so forth are somehow able to explain the evolution of this bizarre creature, but I do not understand how at this time.

  15. says

    it looks more like Karl Marx to me.

    Phil Plait, the Bad Astronomer, has already reported seeing Lenin on his shower curtain. The communists have already had their apparition, so this must be Darwin.

  16. says

    What always amazes me is how many of these people think they know what Jesus or Mary looked like. Dennett or Darwin or Whitman – we know what they looked like. Jesus or Mary – no.

    It’s like this asparagus root – everyone is saying “Jesus!!!!” but it’s so obviously Hemingway.

  17. Fred says

    I guess my eyes are failing with age (or perhaps I need a better monitor to view it). To me, it more closely resembles a martian volcano viewed from orbit. If viewed up-side-down, though, it looks a bit like a chimp with chocolate stains on it’s mouth.

  18. Crudely Wrott says

    It took a couple of long looks, but there can be no doubt. It’s Bosco. He was a wino in the small Wyoming town where my father lived. I saw him pissing off a bridge in the middle of town when I was seven or eight. Yep. No doubt about it. Bosco.

  19. Carlie says

    I finally see it! Although to me, if it’s Darwin, it’s Darwin a few decades after death, because it looks a lot like a beard on a bare skull to me. Might be more meaningful that way, though…

  20. Kurt says

    I see a light bulb with a broken stem and a stick, stuck through the stem hole, wielded by the single arm of a cephalopod. The light bulb is also in the process of being shattered by a bullet.

  21. anomalous4 says

    Paul Bunyan’s ghost. The trees finally got disgusted with him chopping them down, ganged up on him, and sealed him up in one, like Merlin.

    It’s not nice to mess with Mother Nature.

  22. Observer says

    All I see is a tiny polar bear cub.

    Posted by: craig | November 15, 2006 09:24 PM

    That’s what I saw, but he has a gash running from his nose to over his eye. It’s a sign from the tree that global warming is killing off the polar bears. Who says you can’t have environmental pareidolia?

  23. Jeebus says

    It probably is Darwin, but the real question is:

    Whose is the head growing out the top/left-hand part of Darwin’s head?

    Is it a mugshot of our other great leader, George W. Bush?


  24. jeanine marie says

    I saw Frida Kahlo in a tortlla once. nah, this one is trixie, mom’s dog,
    communicating from the great beyond.

  25. David Marjanović says

    Can’t see it either. I only see the Lenin on the curtain (though something’s wrong with the beard…).

    But then, I’ve not paid much attention to this kind of thing since a friend of mine told me he saw Our Lady of Guadalupe in a Hustler photo spread.

    Tonantzin? You know, the Aztec flower goddess?

  26. Buckley says

    This must be taken as definitive proof that Charles Darwin shares a connection to the Holy Trinity (noodles, pirates, and midgets) on par with the Virgin (yeah, right) Mary.
    So, since Mary was the mother of Jesus and wife of God (and Joseph, that slutty lil’ minx), this must make Charles Darwin kind of a brother-in-law to God. Which obviously explains why beards are so popular in some of the older tribes (eg, orthodox Jews, Muslims, ugly law professors), and why Catholics do not like beagles.
    (Hey, this logic is as good as any you will find in an ID handbook. Point your flame somewhere else.)

  27. JONBOY says

    I was taking a shower last night when I looked in the mirror and I almost fainted.My penis looked like St Peter
    the resemblance was amazing.I was thinking about contacting
    the media and and seeing if they wanted to do a cover story.Just think my penis on national TV or I could sell
    it on E Bay

  28. says

    I can almost NEVER see pareidolia, except when someone helpfully posts a picture of what it is supposed to be right next to the shower curtain or whatever. So I don’t see anything but a blob. I think there’s something wrong with my brain. I also think that ultrasounds are a scam — it’s clearly just a lot of black and white blobby things that could be ANYthing. The doctors just tell you it’s really your baby or your thyroid or your knee so they can make money off you. Yeah.

  29. Umilik says

    Looks like a bald guy to me… If so, it’s definitely NOT old Charlie. If nothing else, those old German socialists had hair.