Monday, March 29, 2010
God peeks out from behind the wing of a dragonfly
Now, I am not a math person, and I am really not terribly up on the whole Intelligent Design theories, but I know that the universe is made of math.
Quite a few years ago now I signed up for a summer course in mathematics designed to help life-long math-handicapped people like me get past the elementary level and upgrade to the point where they could make a start in sciences. I then followed up with a course in basic geometry, since I had found that part of the first course so very interesting. Some years after that, I read about Euclid and bought a school-boy's version of his book and started working my way through it.
What my geometry experiment taught me is that, just as it is logically indisputable that God exists, it is geometically indisputable that there is design in the universe. Reality is mathematically explicable.
Some years after my math flirtation, I had one of the most memorable walks I have ever taken. It was after a Sunday Mass, and John Muggeridge and another friend of ours took a long walk through High Park. Our friend, who is a math teacher and a brilliant amateur woodworker, told us all about these mathematical ideas like the Fibonacci series, spirals and Golden Angles and all the mystical things of math that were known by the ancients and rediscovered by the Renaissance geniuses, that explain the orderliness of the universe and why modern art and architecture have been such flops.
Later, Fr. Martin Hilbert of the Toronto Oratory (another ridiculously smart math-person) gave a talk all about the design that is evident is the flagellum of microscopic creatures. I was again mesmerised.
Today, I am beginning a course in drawing. Instruction will be given in the classical methods that were taught to all the great artists of Europe until the Asteroid that Destroyed Everything Good Holy and True. I will be studying three hours a week at first, and I hope there will be no end.
I hope that it will move from the classical drawing and painting techniques, to a deeper study of the observable universe. I have no idea if I have any sort of talent for two-D art, and I don't care. There is something, something about these lost secrets of our Western Tradition, that have whispered to me all my life. There is order in the universe, and it can be comprehended. God speaks through creation.