Love and Gravity – an Essay, by Paul Curran

Today’s post comes from the one and only Paul-No-Blog, a non blogger who writes bigger, better, and more frequent blog posts than many actual certified bloggers. (We won’t point any fingers here, since it’s rude, and kind of pointless because you can’t really see where exactly I am pointing anyway).

 

Love and Gravity, an Essay

by Paul Curran

Have you ever noticed that in life there seems to be a repetition of concepts within very different applications, across applications and in both macro and micro effects? For instance the best definition I have seen of “love” comes from Plato’s Socrates: “The desire to be one with”. Certainly not complete but definitely targeting the core of the meaning. And yet, in the physical world, gravity is a fundamental force described as: “all mass attracts” – alternately, “desires to be one with”. At first glance this may seem a matter of semantics: concepts that are different at their core but are expressed similarly in words. Deeper inspection though shows that not to be true – in fact the definitions are the same because the central concepts are the same and intrinsic: one application creates the existential integration of living things and the other creates one of the primary forces that allows this physical universe to exist. Both are critical to human existence, they are not at all related and yet at their cores, they are the same concept. This seems very curious to me, given that I warily eye any coincidences. (Yes, real coincidences do seem to happen occasionally but with about the same frequency as UFO sightings turn out to be true.)

Image source http://www.cosmotography.com

So, that being said, the big question is “Why would the same concept drive completely unrelated forces in the world?” After pondering this I have come to a couple of loose conclusions. One of the challenges in discussing this is: “Where to start?” Because the majority of human knowledge is internally consistent (i.e., all linked together) it is theoretically possible to start anywhere and get to the issue at hand – and any other like discussion could, for sure, start elsewhere. It is like driving past a fully mature crop of corn in the field. As the huge stalks of corn rush past the car window, the field appears to be planted randomly. There is no obvious or evident order to the organization of the plants springing from the ground. And still as you watch, the wall of green continually emerges from ahead, flicks past and recedes behind. Then, suddenly, you can see a bit further into the field between the stalks. Then further still, further still and then, as if a switch was flicked, you can see all the way down the row to the far end of the field. For a few seconds (or less) each row marches past with full visibility to the trees on the far side of the acres wide field, like a picture of a railroad track narrowing into the distance. Then the trees disappear and the corridor grows shorter and shorter until apparent randomness reestablishes itself. But now you know it is not random. That narrow space in time when the field’s order, organization and pattern is clear as you race by, introduces you to the farmer’s perspective when he first plowed the field and planted the corn – many months before. How he saw and drove the field when there was no corn – how he planted the individual seeds that grew to be the cornfield. His perspective. And you shared it for a few seconds. Life is like that and it opens an opportunity to explore further the nature of the field.

So, come and join me as we stop where the rows are obvious and walk out into the field, down the line of plantings and think about the perspective of the farmer, a long time ago. The point of this is to communicate that there IS often a discoverable inherent perspective even though it all often appears to be random. Once you know that, it is a simple process to find the perspectives that you can see clearly. Just walk around in your life actually looking, until you come across an area where the rows line up and you can see the organization, et Voilá: there is the perspective.

In logic there is a set of problems called “Wicked Problems”1. They are special because, basically, in order to find the way from the question to the answer, it is necessary to know both the question and the answer before beginning. And then, and only then, can a pathway be found between the two – and that pathway is often not unique. This has always struck me as a metaphor for life – to live a full and fulfilling life, it is necessary to know the meaning of life (i.e. what’s important and why) or, failing that, to assume a meaning. The issue is, of course, that the meaning of life is not likely to become known to an individual until the end (if then), so life is an especially wicked problem. These types of problems have a unique name: super wicked problems2 (I kid you not!). One of the 4 defining characteristics is that the person seeking to solve the problem is a part of the problem (the other 3 characteristics are logical extensions of being human: time is running out, there is no apparent central authority and policies discount the future irrationally [i.e. we can only base beliefs and directions on past experience and that is not necessarily related to the future]).

If life is a super wicked problem, then one of the possible methods of solution is iteration. We assume an answer and then see if the actions we take move us from the question to the assumed answer. Some call this failure when it doesn’t work but I prefer Thomas Edison’s response when he was asked by a reporter how it felt to fail a thousand times in his pursuit of a working filament for the light bulb: “I didn’t fail; I found a thousand ways it didn’t work.” You see each “failure” offers us information, helps us to learn and promotes our growth. This method of iteration is often (in my experience) combined with a second method: risk taking. This is done by getting immersed in the topic that contains the problem, seeking out possible avenues of solution and then committing to one without the assurance that it is indeed the route to solution or even a possible solution. This is more often employed when the “answer” is more ephemeral. For instance, Edison knew the exact physical requirements of his answer – a filament that would emit light for an extended period when charged with electricity. So, iteration. However, in a problem such as “I want to find my soul mate”, the answer is much more elusive, and requires commitment and risk to even test a given candidate. Quite possibly the answer is even going to be partially defined by the candidate (i.e., presented a possible solution that had not been considered) as opposed to just the question asker – an even more complex problem.

Image source: thumbs.dreamstime.com

So, then let’s put all this together and apply what we find to the question of “Why are concepts repeated within different applications, across applications and in macro and micro effects?”

We define “intelligence” as the ability to absorb, process and integrate information and then organize it to produce either knowledge (i.e., links between concepts and a better understanding of existence) or a physical structure or behaviour that is either an improvement or creates efficiencies. Interestingly (and logically) enough, if we walk past a garden in front of a house and see that it is ordered by plant size, type and spacing, weeded, fertilized and contained in a well-marked area, we automatically (and rightly) assume there is an unseen gardener with intelligence who has organized this. And yet we will walk by a field of grass growing apparently randomly, without realizing that each blade of grass is orders of magnitude more complex and organized than anything mankind has ever constructed (even ignoring that fact that the grass is alive and we humans have not [yet] been able to convert inanimate objects to living objects). Why is that? Ha! Not trying to introduce another wicked problem here, rather I intend to suggest an answer that helps with the repeating concept problem – which you may be beginning to be suspicious is actually a super wicked problem. And it is. There is no fixed answer known and no clear way to find a path from the question that may lead to an answer. And the pathway cannot be found until the answer is known. And because the question so obviously involves human interest (i.e. example of love and gravity) it is a super wicked problem.

Here’s an example of a repeating concept that does have an obvious answer as to why it repeats. Humans and a small earth worm (nematode C. Elegans) appear to share about 75% of their genetic material:
“Collins [Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute] said that by understanding what happens in the worm cells, researchers also learn what happens in human cells. Of the 5,000 best-known human genes, 75 percent have matches in the [nematode C. Elegans] worm, Collins said.”3
And the answer is that they came from the same source – just a long while ago:
“According to accepted evolutionary theory, nematodes and humans split more than 600 million years ago.”4

And then another repeating concept that does not appear to have a common source: in both DNA and the nuclear construction of the physical world, the number of unique fundamental components is very small and from that very small group, through combinations and groupings, all living things and all matter is designed. In the physical world there are only 3 fundamental particles – electrons, neutrons and protons. Of these, all atoms are created (a few more than 100) and from atoms all molecules (unnumbered) are created – simply by unique rearrangements of the basic particles. And in DNA, there are only 4 molecules (RNA substitutes a fifth for one of the molecules) and those molecules are combined to construct all DNA and carry all the information to create all living things. Both of these examples have the same central concept – the combination of a very small number of fundamental components creates all that exists and an apparently unlimited top end of how many unique combinations are possible.

Image source: NASA

There appears to be a level of organization and integration (read “intelligence”) in this universe that is many, many orders of magnitude greater than what humans possess. The fact that this level of organization exists implies a higher intelligence – remember the garden and the cornfield? So, let’s take a shot at solving the super wicked problem of why there are so many central concepts that are repeated in completely different applications by proposing a higher intelligence and see if that fits. This certainly works with the beliefs of billions of humans. We need a name for reference and any current name for the higher intelligence comes with a whole culture attached and often exclusivity – but from what we’ve seen above our answer can only be inclusive. So, if we assume that the higher intelligence is an omnipresent, omnipotent deity (if you’re going to assume, then go all the way) then we will abbreviate that with OOD.

Checking OOD first against the definition of a super wicked problem, we find that it makes it go away. It resolves the apparent lack of a central authority; it thereby releases individuals from involvement as responsible for the repeating concepts; it solves time running out because it would imply life after death; and OOD would also imply the ability to include both the past and the future in policy (beliefs) drafting – removing irrationality. So far, so good.

It is common that similar driving concepts often occur when the two applications are from one source, i.e. the nematode vs. human DNA comparison. An OOD would have created the major concepts that drive the universe and in doing so would have repeated the most defining concepts that best worked and best reflected the nature of the OOD. Checking this, it is common belief (in most tracts that discuss OOD) that the central concept behind OOD is unity or Love. That would solve two mysteries: 1) The concept of desire for unity is used in both the existential world (i.e. love) and the physical world (i.e. gravity): both defining applications in our universe and 2) a number of central repeated concepts are based on the building of large complex systems from very simple fundamentals (i.e. molecules, DNA) much as a single unified OOD would produce a wildly diverse universe.

Image source: Clipartbest com

One of the hallmarks of highly organized and integrated systems is an eloquence that maximizes efficiency. When coding a computer program a good programmer will write a sub-routine for each regularly used calculation. Whenever the program requires that calculation, it is directed to call the sub-routine. This increases efficiency (i.e. more can be accomplished with less energy and complication) as well reducing errors as the same sub-routine is used in each calculation. It appears as if the universe is built that way with concepts – whenever a particular need demands a particular concept, the same one is reused to maximize efficiency (not likely OOD makes mistakes – that one is for us lowly humans). For instance a maple tree bears an unmistakable resemblance, in shape, to a maple leaf. When the same mathematical concept is repeated on both a micro and macro level (which is a very efficient way to build) we call those fractals. This too is consistent with an OOD.

Maple

So, why is there a non-random amount of concept repetition within very different applications, across applications and in both macro and micro effects? All of the results of our discussion point clearly to the existence of an omnipresent, omnipotent deity. Once we learn to view our world through this lens, the answers to many other questions also come to light. One of the complications of this view is that it raises as many questions as it answers – it is only a beginning.

Love and Gravity – references

1 Wikipedia, Wicked Problem, December 2013, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wicked_problem
2 Ibid
3 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Computer Science Department: http://www.cs.unc.edu/~plaisted/ce/worm.html
4 Ibid

Advertisements

55 thoughts on “Love and Gravity – an Essay, by Paul Curran

  1. Paul

    Thank you very very much for the editing and posting List of X. It is wonderful to have this opportunity thanks to Julie, yourself and Gibber. Truly you guys are a community who cares.

    Liked by 3 people

    Reply
      1. Paul

        Yep Paul, it’s a good thing I got you to talk to, cause we sure are bereft of readers. Shew! 😀

        Note to self: Lay off the Essays 😀

        Like

        Reply
        1. philosophermouseofthehedge

          Oh, it’s just people are busy with the end of school and graduations and summer starting and stuff – lots of bloggers are MIA.
          Don’t be discouraged.
          One thing for sure, there are no mistakes – only alternatives. Something to be gained in different fashion that perhaps expected – and that’s the deal, maybe…who’s moving the parts…the only order is chaos. Best to roll with it.
          Intriguing post

          Liked by 1 person

          Reply
          1. Paul

            Hey Phil! Great to see you here – I am honored. So, you think that chaos rules? I have a hard time with that Phil – I’ve had too many experiences that tell me other wise – a perfect example is the post I did called The Teens – over a Cordelia’s Mom. When there are billions or more possible outcomes and one best outcome – and that one best case outcome becomes reality, then chaos is not the driving force – especially when this happens over and over.The universe is chaotic – I agree – entropy rules, all things tend to disorganization – except life , life is anentropic. Perhaps not on an individual basis, but as a species. I could give examples all day and never run out – I have seen and experienced too much Phil to ever even consider that all that happens here is chaotic. For me the numbers just don’t add up.

            Thanks for the “intriguing” compliment and the kind words. I think about this sort of stuff quite a bit. Logic only will only take the thought process a short distance before it has to be grounded in realty. One, at the very most , two steps. I suspect that is so because although we live in a world of probabilities, where we skate through the valleys of likelihood, there is a hand behind those probabilities that guides the outcomes.

            Thanks again for dropping by, Phil, I treasure your visits. Please come again.

            Liked by 1 person

            Reply
            1. List of X Post author

              Paul, I’m not sure how you can call our world “the best case outcome”, with all the natural disasters, diseases, nuclear weapons, wars, ISIS, and you having an old and crappy computer. It’s just okay enough to survive in and maybe for some to thrive, but calling it “the best case outcome” assumes that this world but without malaria and earthquakes will be somehow worse than it is now.

              Like

              Reply
              1. Paul

                Ha! There is that X. Ha! I was actually thinking about the development of intelligence and the ability to integrate and problem solve and improve. The option of choice. The world is not fair – it is our job to make it fair. How’re we doin’?

                Liked by 1 person

                Reply
                1. List of X Post author

                  So is the world the best possible possible outcome, or is it an assignment for us to make it better?
                  Because if it’s an assignment, would really improve our problem solving skills if, say, the Yellowstone super-volcano exploded, or an asteroid hit the planet, or some pandemic started, or your computer stopped working completely.
                  And if it’s meant to be the best case scenario, then, as I said, I can think of tons of improvements that aren’t supposed to be possible in a best case scenario.

                  Like

                2. Paul

                  I’m too little to answer that big a question X. There are more variables in this universe than we have numbers for and each variable has up to infinite possible values (i.e. DNA combinations) and then they interact in manners so complex that I sometimes wonder how we ever actually “know’ anything at all. To determine whether the universe is ‘perfect’ as it is or requires us to be perfect or can never be perfect or perhaps does not bend itself to our categorization, is a determination so far beyond my ability that I have a hard time getting my head around the question, let alone the answer. Which, to me, is just another reason to say; there is organization here that is so far beyond our ken that we can’t even see the question, the alone the answer. and for those problems I rely on the supreme being.

                  Like

            2. philosophermouseofthehedge

              What may appear on the surface as chaos, may actually be quite orderly when viewed over a long period of time. You know how when viewing an impressionist painting up very very close it looks like a mishmash of disorderly colors – yet step back and a precise masterpiece image appears?
              LIfe is most likely like that..how else could anyone explain fractals?
              Love that “where we skate through the valleys of likelihood” phrase. Often (long term and looking back) the only bad decision is to make no decision. That stalls many people in life.
              People are players on a stage without having access to the script. (The directors was sure players understand as the summary was so obvious…but then unexpectedly there are those who prefer not to take direction and have aspirations of managing the sets, players, and stage all by themselves which produces chaos during rehearsals. Sooner or later the production crashes because the original thought/concept was overlaid so many times by those who pretended to know what they were doing/believed they knew/convinced the easily lead to follow them. Resulting in no applause, a firing of problematic cast members, junking elaborate stage settings, and going back to an orderly reading of the script.
              Humans seem to thrive on conflict, being contrary, wanting what is on the other side of the fence – all of which creates chaos and noise in life – despite the framework….Now nature and the animal kingdom – there chaos is treated harshly, quickly and with final firmness.Either animals/nature see a much longer view or they have the script tucked in behind those ears.
              When I read your post, I was really much too tired to seriously respond. Don’t be discouraged about readership. Do tag it “long form” if you didn’t so it gets in front of readers who want to read, think, and respond…not just kitty pictures and silliness…or short rants. It’s summer the blogs always change about now, people are MIA for long periods. Find your niche, dig in and just write (that’s all that matters anyway) PAw waves from the tropics (believe it or not the ground is already cracking from heat.)

              Liked by 1 person

              Reply
    1. Paul

      Bwahaha! I’m not honestly surprised – your avatar looks like a skull and cross bones. Ha! Actually X, I wrote this over a year ago in response to a question that another blogger posed – and I didn’t want to go on for 2k+ words in someone’s comments. I didn’t write it for publication – I wrote it with that one blogger in mind. Gibber was after me for material and I mistakenly said I had this essay that had never been published – I’ll know better next time. I rather like it, and even when I reread it i can’t think of any way to improve it. Be we all have different tastes and I’m fine with the fact that it’s not interesting enough for readers. Lesson learned. Thanks again for editing and posting this X – it looks great.

      Like

      Reply
      1. List of X Post author

        I don’t have a problem with you posting this essay. Just because not many people clicked Like on it, (and maybe because I disagree with your essay:), you should not have to reconsider posting it.
        If you send something like this again, I’ll happily post it, too 🙂
        Although I am hoping you’d take the admin access to the blog and next time post it yourself (I know, I know, old computer…:)

        Like

        Reply
  2. List of X Post author

    But since you probably wanted to provoke a discussion, I can probably give you that. For one, I disagree that life or nature requires an OOD. You assume that if life requires high organization, it so unlikely that it would have been impossible without an OOD, and I think that’s a faulty conclusion. You are looking at the data post-factum and assume that just because the end result (the Universe as we know it) is improbable, it’s not a result of regular random outcomes subject to probability rules and laws of nature.
    To see what I mean, try this experiment: take an empty regular sized room with a running ceiling fan, about 12×12 feet, and draw a grid on the floor of about 1/10 by 1/10 of an inch. You’ll have just a little over 2 million cells. Now take an average grain of sand, close your eyes, and throw it up in the fan, so that it bounces off and falls somewhere on the floor. The grain of sand will land in one of these cells, but the chance it would have ended up in that particular cell is 1 in 2 million! If you repeat the experiment, and throw it again, it would again land in some cell, and again the chance that it would have ended up in this cell in 1 in 2 million. The chance it would end up in the first cell during the first cell, and in the second cell is 1 in 4 Trillion, a much worse chance than winning a lottery jackpot. Repeat it 5-6 times and record your results, and you’ll end up with truly astronomical probabilities, that no way, no how could be possible – except you just did that!

    Like

    Reply
  3. List of X Post author

    As for your sub-routine argument, I don’t buy it either. I use them myself, but the sub-routines create elegance and efficiency only in the way the entire program is written by making fewer lines of code, they don’t necessarily create elegance or efficiency in the way the program actually works, because they may duplicate things that were already done outside of subroutine, and that takes computing time.
    Again, an example/old programmer joke:
    Q: You have an empty pot, faucet, and a stove. How do you boil a pot of water?
    A: Fill the pot with water, put it on the stove, light the stove, wait 30 minutes.
    Q: You have a pot filled with water. How do you boil a pot of water?
    A: Empty the pot then follow the sub-routine above.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  4. Paul

    Well said X. As far as the sub-routines are concerned, They are a tool that can be used to increase the elegance of the program but like all tools they are useless in the hands of idiots. The best hammer in the world won’t build a house unless a smart carpenter uses it.In that I agree. Given a good carpenter he can build better and faster and more accurately with a good hammer.Perhaps marginally but definitely better. So too with subroutines. I honestly haven’t written code for many years X, so I am not able to take this argument much deeper.

    As far as the sand grain argument is concerned, the laws of probability only apply if all outcomes are equally probable – which is your experiment as described. But that’s not so in reality is it? In reality when , as you describe them apparently random outcomes continually benefit us, where billions or trillions of outcomes keep benefiting time after time after time – when only a few out of very many outcomes CAN benefit then it calls the equal probability into question. It’s pretty obvious that we are not controlling these outcomes, but they are exhibiting characteristics of control. How many branches of the evolution tree lead to intelligence? Starting from a singe cell organism how many changes were made to get to us? The answer is a number so big that we don’t have a word for it (or as I say of big numbers – gazillions). You can argue that there is no reason why those “random” events shouldn’t have led to us and yet we are the most intelligent species we know of – meaning the “best” outcome happened . How can that be? That’s like arguing that if you put enough monkeys in front of typewriters they will eventually write the complete works of Shakespeare. It is theoretical possible that is true but you and I know it won’t happen by chance – I’d be willing to bet my life on it.

    Anyway, thanks again for the posting and discussion. I appreciate it sir.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Outlier Babe

      Paul, I believe in God. I do think the monkey/typewriter analogy is a poor one. Evolution is constant. Constant change and constant competition. That, in the work world, would drive what? And thus, we wound up with a wonderfully efficient set of building blocks, leading to others–with exceptions, and apparent exceptions that got worked in somehow and found a use for.

      I think your essay is well-crafted, and carefully-paced. Here is area where I think your argument CAN succeed:

      Aesthetics and affection.

      Why beauty? Why have an understanding of the concept? An ecology of biological beings surely works without it.

      Why a sense of play? Creatures could forrage or hunt and be hunted without it, could they not?

      Why love and affection? Creatures could surely mate and reproduce without it. (Arguments that, without affection, they would all kill each other are idiotic. They would not, because those “they”s wouldn’t evolve.)

      We (or rather, “they”, as in the women and men who learn such things) are finding more and more about the universals of the appeal of play across species.

      Scientists are finally, slowly coming to accept what others have long known: That many more species are capable of, and crave, affection than science had thought (alligators–really?).

      I wonder about the appreciation for beauty in each species. Does a fox, before it goes leaping and playing in the new snow, before it goes hunting through and under it, take a moment while smelling its smells (and isn’t THAT sense part of this gift of beauty from God indeed, Paul–for we don’t only smell things for practical reasons, do we?), to look out and feel THRILLED at the sparkles everywhere?

      Like

      Reply
      1. Paul

        Hi OB! Great to have you join in. You know OB I haven’t even given beauty a thought. Excellent questions. You know when I think of God, I used to think that we were “given” certain qualities and characteristics sort of as building blocks, as you put it. The more I see of life, the more I am starting to think that our characteristics are actually reflective of that of the supreme being. Our as the bible says, we were built in the image of God. Which would imply that God loves beauty and wonder and such, for we have been give those characteristics as well. Including a sense of humor.

        Play is an excellent question. It also applies to many animals. have you ever seen that series of photos where the scientist recorded polar bears playing with sled dogs? Pretty amazing. Google “Pictures of polar bears playing with sled dogs” It blows me away every time i see pictures of this.

        Thanks so much for dropping by for a visit and a a chat. i’m going to have to give beauty some thought – thanks!

        Like

        Reply
        1. Outlier Babe

          Haven’t seen those photos–I’ll google, thanks–but do you know about the alligator that made personal pals with a human, to the extent that they co-swam and played together in the water for years? (yikes)

          I don’t know how reflective our characteristics are of a supreme being–I am a confirmed misanthrope, and think most of us act thoughtlessly or with evil intent much of the time (darn that free will, huh?), so we seem to have a lot of blocks for doing nasty stuff to each other. But we have the gift of the others, is how I see it.

          Liked by 1 person

          Reply
  5. insanitybytes22

    I love it, Paul! Love and gravity, great title. I suppose we could say both are really just theories, although I wouldn’t recommend trying to tangle with either one 😉

    It’s a very complex post, lots of food for thought there. Wicked problems,indeed. Not only do we share a bulk of our DNA with a worm, we also share it with a potato. That’s humbling and does explain the behavior of some people quite well. Spuds, I tell you. Your corn field analogy is very good. I also tend to think of potatoes because they’re underground, you can’t see them. Above ground you’ve simply got these rather useless and somewhat poisonous leaves. Someone unfamiliar with potatoes could easily conclude that a farmer was a moron for planting something that toxic that serves no purpose. What we see at first is not always the truth however. Sometimes you have to look at what lies beneath the surface to get the whole picture.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply
    1. Paul

      Thanks so much for the visit and compliment – I am honored. **bows in thanks** Your analogy with the potatoes is excellent -I like it , do you mind if I use it?

      Thank you for enjoying the post – that makes a total of one , besides me. 😀 The original question posed was why are so many concepts repeated in unrelated subjects? Anyway, The answer to me is obvious: It is because there is God. As you can see from my logic IB, I can’t see any other way the universe could be constructed. To me every where I look I see God’s hand. You know I had colon cancer (it was over 10 years now and I’m clean) and there was serious damage done inside from the radiation treatment. It turns out that my cells are sensitive to radiation. It zapped the tumor out of existence even when they only intended to shrink it. Anyway, there was an insidious side effect (amongst many) that occurred that had very little effect on me because I had a colostomy. A short time later my Dad passed away with that very same condition at 75 years of age. If I had not had the colostomy – that genetic condition would have killed me too. So, in a way the cancer saved my life because I have a colostomy and am not susceptible to the condition (a passage opens between the bladder and the colon -causing septicemia and other issues – deadly)

      Anyway I could go on for ever > I just can’t see this universe being anything but part of God.

      Thanks so much for visiting and your compliment IB – I treasure it.

      Liked by 2 people

      Reply
      1. insanitybytes22

        Ahh, thank you Paul, how sweet. Of course you may use the potatoes.

        I really do enjoy hearing your story and the way you perceive God and the universe. I have heard some amazing stories, one guy I know got hit on the head with a baseball. If he hadn’t had a concussion, they never would have found the tumor that was killing him. That was 15 years ago and he’s still going strong. Another guy I know, in his 40’s, had a heart attack. What makes him interesting is that to this day he says it was the most beautiful experience of his life because he feels as if he got a glimpse of the other side. Indescribable longing he calls it, like going home where you belong.

        Like

        Reply
        1. Paul

          I can sure relate to that. When they found the tumor by doing a colonoscopy I asked to watch. I don’t know if you’ve ever had one done. but the video output is shown on a big screen. The doctor operates the probe and a specialized nurse takes care of the controls such as air blasts (to get around corners), water blasts (clean off tissue to see better) etc. When they did this I was fascinated – the structures in there, never seen by any eyes before and seeing light for the first time in their existence. Anyway we came across the tumor and it was gorgeous IB. Unbelievable. It was shaped like a prism and was bright red (like fresh blood – which tumors eat). My colon had been emptied for the test, but there is always fluid in there – our gastrointestinal track uses/ produces about 8 liters per day. Coming off the tumor at the edges were these feather like structures and they were swaying as if they were in a light breeze. They were an iridescent white and sparkled in the light. It was mesmerizing. How a thing of such beauty could be so destructive is beyond me. The Lord works in mysterious ways. Anyway, I was never concerned that I would die – and I didn’t.

          Destructive or not, the beauty alone made it clear that there is a higher intelligence. Definitely thought provoking.

          Liked by 2 people

          Reply
  6. Trent Lewin

    Paul! Good to see you, man, and putting out something of this thoughtfulness and quality (as always, actually).

    Listen, the only thing I know is that I am not sufficiently intelligent to understand the magnitude of everything I don’t know. I get hints of it on the periphery at times, outside under the stars, plugging back a double of scotch, getting an unexpected hug from the little ‘uns in the morning… and then I think, well, how could something so simple be so complex, and how come I don’t anything about how it all got here? If I were an enlightened soul, I’d pursue that question, but you know – as much as I don’t do it often anymore – I’d rather hang out in the blogosphere and chat with my friends and enjoy the munificence of all the little and big bits and pieces that led from nothing to me being here. What a journey, eh. Here I am, some kind of endpoint in a story I don’t know. Maybe that’s why I tell stories. Maybe that’s why we all do.

    Like

    Reply
    1. Paul

      Cool comment Trent! Thank you so much for the compliment. 😀 There is a lot to be said for just doing what feels right. In the long run it is mostly what we should do anyway, in my mind. That being said I have been presented with choices where there are equally right choices – and I can only pick one. In those cases I need to know where I am going – what my destination is – in order to pick.And there are times when i know the dark horse – the least probable option – is the best, again because i have a sense of what the end result is supposed to be. I had a very beautiful female prof once at Queen’s and she strongly believed that the pursuit of happiness was the meaning of life. that is not uncommon and yet it has always left me feeling vaguely uncomfortable. i know in my life some of the best and hardest choices I made that i know were right, made me the most unhappy (of the options). Sometimes it is very simple things , like; i came upon a head on collision in the wee hours of the morning, where one crushed car was left steaming with all the glass fractured, in the middle of the road. I was the only one there – I had to go and check to see if i could offer help. I could have kept going, saying i was going to get help, or i could have directed any cars that came by to get help. that would have made me happier. But i didn’t because i know we are all in this together and taking care of my neighbor is my responsibility (within reason) so i trudged over to the car with flashlight in hand and saw the driver’s side window was blown out so i could see what was happening within. This will be a post some day, so i’ll leave you in suspense. The point is that choice was not the one that made me happy.

      Happiness is an outcome, a result, it is not a direction or a target. I personally think that doing the right thing is the target – fulfillment. It too often is not the happy choice or sometimes even the logical choice, but it is the right choice. Again, most choices are simple and doing what feels right and makes you happy works. Then there are the big ones where we need some direction to choose correctly.

      Anyway Trent , great to see you hanging around the blogosphere occasionally. You now how things tend to get out of control when you’re not here. Please drop by again my friend when you have a chance. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      1. Trent Lewin

        Well, I think you have said that perfectly. I too believe that the pursuit of happiness is not the endgoal – it is important, but not the goal. I do think we should strive for happiness! Because the alternative is a little bleak. But let us do the right thing, because inherently we seem to know what the right thing is (the reasons for this, of course, can vary based on opinion).

        Look Paul, if Art is going a bit nuts while I’m not around, you just let me know and I will try to set him straight.

        Liked by 1 person

        Reply
        1. Paul

          The squirrels keep getting loose Trent – and you know how that goes; he is inconsolable until we have rounded them all back up again. Sigh, too bad his brilliance is so linked to those squirrels. 😀

          Like

          Reply
          1. Trent Lewin

            Seldom do the words “brilliant” and “squirrels” appear in the same context, but in this case we must hand it to our friend Art, who literally does rip his guts out for our entertainment. I wish the squirrels well! However, if I ever catch one, I’m eating the beast.

            Liked by 2 people

            Reply
  7. Exile on Pain Street

    Wow. That was different. I’m going to double-back and read it again, but first I’ll need to smoke a big fatty and crank up the old lava lamp. What have you done with Paul? If you’ve hurt him I’ll find you and make you pay. So, are you calling me a small earthworm? I’ve been called much worse. Put em’ up.

    I don’t know if I agree with the concept of the desire for unity. Is that really true? People like chaos, even though they don’t like to admit it. People routinely get in trouble when there’s too much unity in their lives and they go out looking for some chaos.

    Like

    Reply
    1. Paul

      Hi Mark! Thanks so much for dropping by for a read and comment. I am honored good sir. It is an interesting point that you bring up about unity. In retail, the trick is to provide some basic products that never change and some that change constantly. This mix is what attracts customers. Every business does this to a greater or lesser extent. Life is like that as well (see – a repeated pattern 🙂 ) That said, we use the chaos for purposes of sampling new and different options looking for further unity. Just as we peruse new products at the store looking for something different that we can use or enjoy – so too we employ chaos in life as a means of discovering unity. So, the end game is unity – we employ chaos to find unity.

      Ha! Yes this is a bit different from my usual stuff. This is what goes on under the surface while I’m busy trucking or whatever. This is kind of the quantum mechanics of my life that underpins the daily activities. Normally I wouldn’t think of publishing this but there is always a first time. Ha!

      You old worm you! Great to hear from you again – read on. 😀

      Like

      Reply
  8. MamaMickTerry

    MIND BLOWN!
    Holy cow, Paul. The depth and breadth of your knowlege never ceases to amaze me. You are full of stories and insights and I learn more every time I’m with you. I’m probably not sophisticated to make the right leap, but I have to say that this essay makes me think about the non-randomness of flower petals. We might see flowers are random tufts of color tucked in among everything else. But, if you look closer, you’ll see the uniformity, the patterns and the very non-randomness to their existence. You captured that perfectly in this essay and made me think beyond those simple petals. I’m amazed – how do you even get something like this down on paper???

    Like

    Reply
    1. Paul

      Hi Mama! It’s an honor to have you drop by – Thank you. I used to do a lot of thinking when I was driving. It’s sort of Zen-like when you get used to it – highway driving that is. Indeed, I suspect that flower petals are non-random and further more that the pattern is comforting to us because we can relate. No doubt that same pattern likely appears elsewhere and at the same time plays numerous roles in the efficiency of the plant.

      It is all so interlinked Mama that when you look close, it is mind blowing for sure. We just take so much for granted without stopping to really consider. The complexities and intricacies are astounding. It reaches a point where you realize that there is no way possible that this happened randomly. I studied statistics and probabilities and although it is true that almost anything can happen randomly, the continual best-case outcome time after time indicates strongly that those probabilities are being directed.

      Thanks so much for the read and I am pleased that you enjoyed it. It’s wonderful to see you around. You are always so upbeat that it is a joy to read your comments. Please drop by again Mama. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
        1. Paul

          There’s a couple of stories previous on this site: a reblog of mine called “Elizabeth and Ute” and then “The Medical Situation”

          Like

          Reply
  9. willowdot21

    Great essay Paul , while have you you captive I have nominated you for the Three Day Quote Challenge
    The rules of the challenge:
    Post your favorite quotes or your own quotes for 3 days in a row.
    Thank the person who nominated you
    Pass it on to 3 other bloggers. XXXX

    Like

    Reply
  10. Paul

    Hey Hook! Awesome to see you here. Thanks so much for dropping by and for the compliment. X is the best for sure.:D Please drop by to see us again.

    Like

    Reply
  11. beeholdn

    Well, I really need to spend some time with this . . . Meantime, is there any chance you could post an Official Condensed Version? Or a Summary of Main Points? My mind is easily boggled, you see; sigh.

    Like

    Reply
    1. Paul

      Just drawing up a contract with Cole’s Notes as we speak. Ha! Thanks or dropping by for a read beeholdn. The short version can be put into two words: God exists. All the rest is a result of that. Sort of a plug and play exercise -God exists which is why all things come back to one, which is why there are repeating concepts across applications and up and down applications, which is why we exist, which is why….ad infinitum.

      Thanks so much for the read and comment. I am honored that you dropped by. Please come again. 😀

      Like

      Reply
      1. beeholdn

        Thank-you, Paul! Reminds me of a quote from Maritain I encountered recently, to the effect that just as we trust physicists and other scientists for our knowledge of and faith in the material world, so we may / must trust the experiences and expressed realities of the mystics and prophets for our understanding of spiritual realities. (The actual quote contained many fewer words and made a much stronger impact, I assure you, lol. A reason we need poets!)
        Be well 🙂

        Like

        Reply
        1. Paul

          Thanks beholden! You know scientists will always lean on “proof”. They require proof to believe. They get very upset when it is pointed out to them that all of our “scientific” knowledge is actually based on assumptions – none of it is provable. For instance Euclidean Geometry – the basis of much of our math – is a collection of assumptions that have never been proven, much to the chagrin of the scientific absolutists. That said, our science can be accepted because it is internally consistent and reproducible. Given that criteria of proof, then it becomes apparent that the existence of God is equally provable.

          Glad you dropped by for a read and a comment. Please come by again.

          Like

          Reply
          1. beeholdn

            Thanks, Paul. I’d be interested in checking out some of those Euclidean assumptions; we take them for granted, I suppose. (Can you recommend a place online to explore these?)
            Ultimately, though, I suspect that belief is one thing and knowledge is another . . . Was it Carl Jung who said that he didn’t ‘believe’ God exists, he ‘knew’ it. The only necessary criterion for this kind of conviction is personal experience. But this is something you can’t ‘prove’, and really, you feel no need to even defend. The assumption involved is simply that your own experience is real . . . as ‘real’ as your life itself.
            I wish you a grace-full day 🙂

            Like

            Reply
    1. Paul

      Ha! Are you implying that this essay is overdue? Ha! Perhaps, but bear in mind it was written for one person – as you may have noticed in the previous comments. Ha! 😛 Great to see ya here GG! I know you’re busy but we miss you.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

Pressure the Non Bloggers to get a Blog!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s