219 – A Magnificent Order …

Although capable, the human mind has not been trained to see the most beautiful aspect of its existence, the Universal Order of which it is a manifestation – how, for instance, trillions of cells of different types and properties, bond together to generate a mind that not only can wonder about the wonder of itself, but about the world from which it comes into existence.

This magnificent Order is evident in instances like:

  • – the Periodic Table, which shows the frugal order of the chemical composition of our Universe (118 elements have been discovered or synthesized so far; 94 occur naturally and the rest are synthesized in laboratories or nuclear reactors).
  • – the hydrogen atom, the most abundant element, which encompasses the Universe from one end to the other with one electron and a proton in its nucleus.
  • – the incontestable progression toward complexity and order of a universal evolutionary process.
  • – the organization of most of the ~2 trillion galaxies that make up our Universe with a preference for spiral and globular shapes.
  • – the bonding of 30-37 trillion cells in a mature human body, which, notwithstanding their many types and specialties nor the changes in internal and external environments, carry the same information as in any other human being for building and maintaining an organism.
  • – E=mc2 “Energy equals mass times the speed of light squared (the speed of Light is 186,000 m/s or 300,000 km/s), which in Einstein’s own words – the mass of a body is a measure of its energy content” – embodies the fundamental core of existence: Order cannot arise without Equilibrium, nor Equilibrium without Self-reflection, nor Self-reflection without Order.

As a mathematical equivalence, e=mc2 is difficult to conceptualize by the non-scientific mind, but we can try by visualizing the proportions of the atomic world. And in the 1990 movie “Mindwalk” I found a great example to do just that:

Let’s imagine blowing up an orange to the size of the Earth – in an orange the size of the entire planet, an atom is the size of a little cherry you can hold in the palm of your hand; that’s how small atoms are. Therefore, when we bring the orange back to its normal size atoms are invisible to us, and we need powerful microscopes to see them. With our naked eyes we only see the patterns and structures they create (the seeds, the skin, the sections full of citrus, etc.).

Now let’s imagine blowing up a hydrogen atom to the size of the Pentagon building in Washington – in an atom the size of the entire building, the nucleus (the proton) is a tiny pebble in the center, the electron is a grain of sand orbiting the pebble in the outer edges of the building. These two components comprise the entire mass content of the atom (the building in our example), the rest is energy. And to calculate the energy content, we take the total mass content of the pebble and the grain of sand and multiply it by the speed of Light, squared. It is now easy to see that, regardless of the true size of an atom, their energy, especially when myriads are bonded together, is monumental. And whether it is a hydrogen atom with one electron or a gold atom with 79, the equal sign in e=mc2 mandates that, for them to be viable, each of its contents must remain an equivalent measure of to the other.

Although these examples are simplistic, they provide us with a glimpse at two important aspects of e=mc2 1 – the power contained within an atom is monumental; as incredibly small as they are, when bonded together they can be as destructive as an atomic bomb or as creative as an iPhone. And 2 – to be viable through internal and external changes, atoms must measure their contents and keep them in relative equilibrium, and this is not possible without a degree of self-reflection.

Take a deep breath – as you inhale you are taking air from the environment – your body, along with the foods you consume, distributes the oxygen to every cell, generating the power that allows you to work, move around, think – as you exhale you are breathing out carbon dioxide which is a source of energy for other organisms. You are a symbiont: by absorbing, synthesizing, and releasing energy sources, you create a presence in the world with the capacity to mold and be molded by environments.

This process is mostly instinctive; your body innately knows how to balance the intake and release of energy sources to give you power. But after a day’s work, energy is spent – you are tired, you are hungry, you must recharge – you eat, rest, sleep. This is instinctive self-reflection – the essence of the equal sign in e=mc2, you cannot exist without it.

At the most basic level, we are made out of atoms. Therefore, it follows that the power of 30-37 trillion cells bonded together into what we are is monumental. Alexander, Hitler, became consciously aware of this power and concentrated it into moving multitudes; Einstein, Darwin, into having a glimpse at the Universal Order; Pythagoras, Rilke, Rumi, into understanding our deep connection with It.

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.

Be Sociable, Share!

Leave a Reply