Archive for October, 2017

183 – E=mc2 and Me …

Sunday, October 15th, 2017

I have never been good at mathematics. I didn’t even try when I was in school. Although I can understand their allure, numbers and equations always seemed not just beyond me, but beyond the capacity to explain what is truly important to me: the emergence of conscious self-reflection in Life. Fortunately, I am good at seeing patterns and their logic, and so I was able to survive my tenure in the financial industry while sifting for meaning through mostly mathematical theories.

My early realization, and total acceptance, of the Facts that I am a universal component and not very good at mathematics, brought me to the conclusion that the only way for me to begin to understand what I am in the scheme of the Universe, was by applying to my own body, to my own life, to my own experience, the philosophic knowledge we already possess of the physical theories; in other words, making myself an experimental tool.

My interest in Relativity started with Einstein’s ideas and the impact they made, and continue to make in the way we understand our Universe. He fascinated me for the immensity of his insight … a mind able to envision a fundamental property of Nature, E=mc2 … and so, without previous education in these matters, I embarked on a quest to try to understand the meaning of the famous equation. Most books on the subject were prominently mathematic, but I persisted, trying to find between the equations the meaning of Einstein’s insight. And after many, many years of study, and guided mainly by his own description of the equation on the paper he published in 1905: “The mass of a body is a measure of its energy content”, I begun to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

The mass of a body is a measure of its energy content. And my body was my tool to try to understand this.

I know that at the most basic level my body is made of atoms. I also know that atoms are fundamentally small concentrations of mass and immense reservoirs of energy. Therefore, I fundamentally am a concentration of mass and an immense reservoir of energy.

The mass of my body was easy to figure out: It is what has grown out of two cells into a 5.10” tall, 150 lb. organism; it is what I can touch, what I can weigh, what I can measure, what I can play with; it is what breathes and eats, it is what consumes and dissipates; it is what I direct to sit down or walk; it is what hurts and makes me uncomfortable when I injure myself or get sick.

The energy was more elusive. Where, What was that immense portion of me, the measure of which is equivalent to the content of my mass times the speed of Light squared?

I started comprehending what this immense energy is, when I realized that what I’ve been taught to be subjective, immaterial … mind, thought, ingenuity, curiosity, focus, persistence, imagination … is actually physical energy; energy that I can almost touch, it is so real, so perceptible. I am not only the energy I metabolize and transform into the physical acts of motion, action and reaction; I am also the physical energy of thinking, imagining, focusing, calculating, learning, making decisions that can change the direction of my life, and decisions that sometimes can change the lives of others; I am the physical energy of a mind that is practically boundless, immeasurable, yet endowed with a physical, tangible power to make an impact on my own development and, sometimes, on the development of the world in which I exist.

There is, for me, no clearer example of the power contained in a human mind, than Einstein’s encapsulation of one of the properties of our Universe in e=mc2 . But what the meaning, the true essence of the equation is, I’ll try to explain on my next post.

Note: New posts are usually published on the 1st and 15th of the month. To subscribe to the Blog, click on the RSS feeder (orange icon) on the left column of the Home page, down below the Archives.

182 – Destiny …

Sunday, October 1st, 2017

The greatest challenge of my life is to try to answer the question What is Life, because even if I know that I am one of its manifestations, and that it is manifested all around me and far away from me, I don’t seem to be capable to fully know what Life is. But there are things I do know about Life: 1 – Life has a purpose, which is to recreate itself with a degree of freedom and inexhaustible ingenuity into higher and higher manifestations of complexity and beauty, and 2 – within my monumental limitations, I am one of the lucky ones able to give my life a direction towards a destination, and to strive to reach that destination.

One of the incredible things about my childhood is that from the constant oppression of Deceit, Poverty, Cruelty, Hunger Ignorance, Hate, Fear, a curiosity to find Beauty, Knowledge, Happiness, Tolerance, Truth, somehow emerged in me with a force that overtook my life. What is this formidable force? What is this part of Life urging me to do something with my life? What is this captivating curiosity to find out what Life is, what I am? Is this what we call Destiny?

There are two definitions for Destiny in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary: 1 – something to which a person or thing is destined, and 2 – a predetermined course of events often held to be an irresistible power or agency. *

There is no question in my mind that everything in Nature is destined with innate degrees of curiosity … it is the key for adaptation and survival … it is how flowers come up with amazing designs to attract pollinators; it is how molecules have come to build the complexity of the double helix; it is how language has attained such a high degree of sophistication; it is how a newborn baby learns to manipulate, to adapt, and to be manipulated by its world; it is how my brain, my organic brain, has come to develop a subjective mind irrepressibly curious about my capacity to reflect upon myself, about what my future … my destiny! … will be.

There is no question in my mind that Life is pre-determined by a relative course of events … the environment in which I was born, the sources of Life from which I was engendered, the forces that have shaped and continue to shape my perception … and that this pre-determined course of events is always accompanied, if encouraged to thrive, by the irresistible power of a degree of curiosity that oftentimes leads us to alter our Destiny.

*Highlights are mine

Note: New posts are usually published on the 1st and 15th of the month. To subscribe to the Blog, click on the RSS feeder (orange icon) on the left column of the Home page, down below the Archives.