Science for me is nature – the beauty, the power, the magnificence, the grandeur, the intricacy, the delicacy of the natural world.
I have always loved this natural world.
I did not love human beings much (including myself!) when I was younger, but I always loved nature.
When I lost my way, nature would always bring me back.
I would love to walk on the beach, and feel the rhythmic power of the ocean, and the tenderness with which the waves kissed the shore.
I loved the ebb and flow, the constancy and ever-changingness, the play of light on water, the sights and sounds of the beach.
I loved to watch the stars at night and see the sphere of the heavens and the arc of its movement.
I would love to feel my place in the universe – small but central! – and I would love the fact that any personal problems I was struggling with would pale into insignificance in the face of this grand beauty. If I focused on myself, I took up my whole universe. I could not see anything else and my problems seemed immense and unique to me. When I saw myself as part of a grand whole, I felt like I belonged. I did not feel alone, and my problems seemed small and surmountable, and the same as everyone else’s.
I loved the shapes and forms of nature – the spiral of shells, the delicate tracery of leaves, the shapes, colours and fragrances of flowers. I loved the patterns, the geometry, the natural perfection.
I could see that anything of beauty that we created – in terms of buildings, art, sculpture – was inspired by the form and proportions of the beauty of nature.
I love mathematics that is inspired by nature, like the Fibonacci spiral.
The Fibonacci sequence is a series of numbers, made by adding the last two numbers together, to make the next one, like this:
0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34…
When you make squares with sides that are the length of these numbers, they fit neatly together, and if you draw arcs joining the corners of the squares, you get a lovely shape, called the Fibonacci spiral, which looks like one of the most beautiful things in nature: a Nautilus shell.
I loved the science of biology, that explored the wonder of living things, the inter-connected-ness within each organism, the balance and harmony of homeostasis, the amazing way in which it all worked together, as one.
And I came to love the human form, and the being that lives within it, through deepening my connection with nature, the divinity in it, and the divinity within me.
Everything wonderful that we as human beings have created has been inspired by nature, and the glory of God we find reflected there.
God is not some nebulous construction of our minds, but the very practical, tangible power of the natural world, the energy that is in everything, that is reflected to us every day in the beauty, wonder, order and magnificence that we live in and that lives all around us.
What I love about science is God.