The word “super/natural” proves that scientific fact is stranger than fiction

The word “super/natural” proves that scientific fact is stranger than fiction

Nature is wonderful and wonderful, and at times maybe a little scary. The unique ways in which different organisms and organisms have evolved, and the amazing – albeit sometimes very strange – adaptations that they have evolved to allow them to function and thrive in their environments is astonishing.


Nat Geo reveals some special abilities of several creatures in a new series called “Super/Natural”. The series – produced by James Cameron and narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch – combines the latest filmmaking technology with the latest scientific innovations to unveil the supernatural senses and “secret powers” of extraordinary creatures.

I spoke with Tom Hugh Jones, the executive producer of “Super/Natural,” and asked him to explain the motivation behind the series, and what he hopes audiences will get from watching it. Hugh Jones explained, “If you’re going into a forest or wherever it is in the natural world, there are all kinds of things you don’t appreciate. I think it’s easy to dismiss animals and plants as kind of primitive or basic, but the more you look at them, you realize that they have a kind of Quasi-Alien intelligence – they have these abilities that are far superior to that.”

He continued, “We wanted to show people things that they wouldn’t be able to immediately see or understand and kind of drive and look at these superpowers – these subtle powers of animals.”

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The title of the series is a play on the word “supernatural”. The word is used to describe things like ghosts or sensory perception and many use it to mean something that defies or transcends the laws of nature.

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In my opinion, the practical part of the word “supernatural” is the “natural” part. I do not suppose that seemingly supernatural things have defied or violated natural laws. Occam’s code would suggest that these phenomena may, in fact, be part of the natural order and operate within the confines of the laws of natureβ€”but they are simply beyond our limited understanding of those laws.

I have always been fascinated by the diversity of beings and organisms in nature and the ways in which life evolves to adapt traits and abilities uniquely suited to survival. For many, the coincidence of these unique features indicates a certain level of intent for a higher being – intelligent design.

Best explained by Stephen Hawking in The Big Design. I’m paraphrasing, but it basically boils down to evolution and natural selection being all the explanation you need. The reason we find amazing beings with amazing, unique abilities and adaptations isn’t because someone or something designed them that way – but because it’s the only way they can be and continue to survive and thrive as a species.

No matter what you think or why, I think most people will agree that these creatures and their abilities are awesome. Nat Geo does an impressive job – as always – capturing nature in film and telling it in a compelling and engaging way. You can check out “Super/Natural” on Disney+.

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