Preparing to Be Born

Galactic WombIn a mother’s womb were two babies. One asked the other: “Do you believe in life after delivery?”

The other replies, “Why, of course. There has to be something after delivery. Maybe we are here to prepare ourselves for what we will be later.”

“Nonsense,” says the other. “There is no life after delivery. What would that life be?”

“I don’t know, but there will be more light than here. Maybe we will walk with our legs and eat from our mouths.”
Continue reading Preparing to Be Born

On Beauty & Patterns

What is Beauty? They say it’s in the eye of the beholder. Can beauty exist without someone to see it and call it beautiful? I can’t answer that, but while pondering what beauty is as we perceive it, my mind started to link things together that for me was very profound. I don’t for a moment think that I am the first to consider these things in this way, but… Well, I’ll try to explain myself.

First beauty is a pattern. We see something that we recognize as beautiful and it is always going to consist of a pattern of some sort. There’s all kinds of patterns in nature. Look if you want. Here is a full encyclopedia article on just that.

If you look at nature closely enough you’ll find:
Continue reading On Beauty & Patterns

The Great Joke

God is definitely a Joker. Peter Duggan's Artoon: Michelangelo from The Guardian
God is definitely a Joker. Peter Duggan’s Artoon: Michelangelo from The Guardian

“There are certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life when a man takes this whole universe for a vast practical joke, though the wit thereof he but dimly discerns, and more than suspects that the joke is at nobody’s expense but his own. … And as for small difficulties and worryings, prospects of sudden disaster, peril of life and limb; all these, and death itself, seem to him only sly, good-natured hits, and jolly punches in the side bestowed by the unseen and unaccountable old joker.”
Moby Dick, Chapt. 49, by Herman Melville (1859)

I know that Melville here was talking about the effect that those people risking life and limb come to experience in the height of danger; the “free and easy sort of genial, desperado philosophy” that life-threatening experiences engender. But even without physical danger there have been times — often in the midst of psychological or emotional tribulations but sometime even when all is well with the world — that I have had that feeling that the Universe is some Great Joke… And that the joke is on me.

It’s not necessarily a bad feeling. After all, I don’t mind being the butt of a joke… As long as it’s a good one.

But maybe it’s more than that. Maybe those times where you feel that everything is a joke is a faint understanding of how infinitesimally small everything you experience, think, feel and perceive actually matters in the grand scheme of things. That’s not to say that we are unimportant. But when you put our individual lives beside the Universe as a whole, how laughable and ludicrous it is to think that whatever is going on in our lives is the be all, end all of… of anything.

It really is quite funny when you think about it. No, really. Let’s think about it for a moment. Consider the three images I have included in this post’s header image… Continue reading The Great Joke

A Song for World War III and Philosophical Thoughts

I stumbled on this interesting article on a singer / song-writer / comedian / satirist by the name of Tom Lehrer who was active in the 1950’s and ’60’s. He long preceded the likes of “Weird Al” Yankovic but his music, despite it’s age, was right at home on the Dr. Demento radio show of the ’70’s to ’90’s. Besides the pure “cool” factor of the man and his work, his career spurred thoughts in me bordering on the philosophical.

One of the many songs of his that grabbed me is, “So Long, Mom (A Song for World War III)”. Continue reading A Song for World War III and Philosophical Thoughts