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Pagan News Beagle: Earthy Thursday, June 4

Who says humanity and the natural world can't get along? We talk a lot in our culture about "man vs. nature (sic)" but how true is that really? Today's stories for Earthy Thursday take a look at the ways in which humanity is either teaming up with nature or finding ways to welcome it into our backyards. Read about using plants to send messages, the surprising greenery of London, and giant rats who help save human lives. All this and more in the Pagan News Beagle!

You may be familiar with the idea that flowers can be used as symbols, but how much of that secret language do you understand? This article from treehugger talks about the many different plants that have been used in the past to render symbolic messages, from common flowers like daisies to more exotic plants like nasturtium.

What do you imagine Cuban wilderness looks like? Wonder no longer, for Lithuanian photographer Marius Jovaiša has provided the International Business Times with an inside look at Cuba after receiving unprecedented access by the Cuban government. Take a look!

Iron's an element we often think of in the context of machinery or other non-living organisms, but it also plays a vital role in our own biology. A relatively common ailment is anemia or a decrease in the circulatory system's ability to carry oxygen, which is often related to a deficiency in iron. It might be heartening to hear then that a Canadian science graduate in Cambodia has devised, with the help of locals, a convenient and easy way to boost one's iron efficiency: by cooking up soup with a special iron token shaped like a lucky fish.

Are cities, as they say, concrete jungles? Well, jungles perhaps but not so concrete as you might think. This piece from io9 takes a look at the land use in London and shows how a surprisingly large amount of it is devoted to greenery.

Rats. Usually we don't want them around (unless they're pets) but in some cases they can actually be vitally useful. This article from The New York Times explains how giant rats in Angola are being used to clear dangerous minefields.

Top image by WPPilot.

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Aryós Héngwis (or the more modest Héngwis for short) is a native of the Pontic-Caspian steppe, born some 5000 years ago, near the village of Dereivka. In his youth he stood out from the other snakes for his love of learning and culture, eventually coming into the service of the local reǵs before moving westward toward Europe. Most recently, Aryós Héngwis left his home to pursue a new life in America, where he has come under the employ of BBI Media as an internet watchdog (or watchsnake, if you will), ever poised to strike the unwary troll.


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