Sorry if this is in the wrong category. If so, maybe the mods could move it for me? Anyway, like my chili recipe, this was originally posted on the other forum, so some of you might have seen it before. I was trying to bring a little "culture" to the survival community. After all, we're not animals, right? Without any further ado, here is my art lesson for the day: ********** Thomas Cole is one of my favorite artists. This is from his Wikipedia page (Thomas Cole - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia): "Thomas Cole (February 1, 1801 – February 11, 1848) was an English-born American artist. He is regarded as the founder of the Hudson River School, an American art movement that flourished in the mid-19th century. Cole's Hudson River School, as well as his own work, was known for its realistic and detailed portrayal of American landscape and wilderness, which feature themes of romanticism and naturalism." I stumbled across a some of his paintings a couple of years ago and have been a fan ever since. In 1836 he painted a series called "The Course of Empire", which portrays an empire progressing from its very beginning until its end. There are five paintings in the series. The first one is called "The Savage State", and shows a wilderness before civilization has been built up. I think of the American wilderness that existed for thousands of years before man had ever set foot on it. Cole Thomas - The Course of the Empire - The Savage State - 1836 The second in the series is called "The Arcadian or Pastoral State". It portrays a simple life. The people in this time are shepherds and farmers. This is the beginning of a society. I liken this to the time from when the Pilgrims first set foot on Plymouth Rock, up until about the end of the 18th century. Thomas Cole - The Course of the Empire - The Arcadian or Pastoral State - 1836 The third painting is titled "The Consummation". The society has reached its pinnacle of its influence. In our American society, I would calculate that we were in this stage from about 1900 until about 1960. During the 1800's we were on our way to this stage, but we had not reached it yet. Thomas Cole - The Course of the Empire - The Consummation - 1836 The fourth painting shows a civilization near the end of its life. The people had become used to a lavish lifestyle that their society could no longer afford. It probably took many years to reach this point. The woman at the lower center of the picture is dressed in her fine white gown. She was probably going about her daily routine as if nothing was wrong. Without warning, their enemies attacked and completely destroyed everything she knew. I believe we have been on a downward slide for several decades now, and are close to that point. Thomas Cole - The Course of the Empire - Destruction - 1836 The final painting in the series is called "Desolation". It shows the ruins of a once-great society whose excesses were its own undoing. This may be a representation of the PAW that we are all preparing for. Thomas Cole - The Course of the Empire - Desolation - 1836 This concludes today's art lesson. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed bringing it to you.