Tuesday, June 27, 2017

The Other Point of View

"Science is a second-order expression [of the world]. Science has not and never will have by its nature the same significance qua form of being as the world which we perceive, for the simple reason that it is a rationale or explanation of the world.... Scientific points of view according to which my existence is a moment of the world's are always both naive and at the same time dishonest, because they take for granted without explicitly mentioning it, the other point of view, namely that of consciousness, through which from the outset a world forms itself round me and exists for me. To return to things themselves is to return to that world which precedes knowledge, of which knowledge always speaks and in relation to which every scientific schematization is an abstract and derivative sign language, as in geography in relation to the countryside in which we have learnt beforehand what a forest, a prairie and a river is."

- Maurice Merleau-Ponty (1908 - 1961)

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

A Tiny Little Database

"The beauty in the genome is of course that it's so small. The human genome is only on the order of a gigabyte of data...which is a tiny little database. If you take the entire living biosphere, that's the assemblage of 20 million species or so that constitute all the living creatures on the planet, and you have a genome for every species the total is still about one petabyte, that's a million gigabytes - that's still very small compared with Google or the Wikipedia and it's a database that you can easily put in a small room, easily transmit from one place to another. And somehow mother nature manages to create this incredible biosphere, to create this incredibly rich environment of animals and plants with this amazingly small amount of data."

- Freeman Dyson (1923 - )

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Eerie Order

"It turns out that
an eerie type of chaos
can lurk just behind
a facade of order;
and yet, deep inside the chaos
lurks an even eerier type of order."

 -  Douglas R. Hofstadter (1945 - )

Saturday, May 20, 2017


"When the first encounter with some object surprises us... this makes us wonder and be astonished... And since this can happen before we know in the least whether this object is suitable to us or not, it seems to to me that Wonder is the first of all the passions. It has no opposite, because if the object presented has nothing in it that surprises us, we are not in the least moved by it and regard it without passion."

- Rene Descartes (1596 - 1650)

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Unbroken Movement

"There is a universal flux that cannot be defined explicitly but which can be known only implicitly, as indicated by the explicitly definable forms and shapes, some stable and some unstable, that can be abstracted from the universal flux. In this flow, mind and matter are not separate substances. Rather, they are different aspects of our whole and unbroken movement."

- David Bohm (1917 - 1992)

Tuesday, May 09, 2017


"Allow the heart to
empty itself of all turmoil!
Retrieve the utter tranquility
of the mind from which you issued.

Although all forms are dynamic,
and we all grow and transform,
each of us is compelled
to return to our root.
Our root is quietude."

Monday, May 08, 2017

The Sentinel

"Think of such civilizations, far back in time against the fading afterglow of creation, masters of a universe so young that life as yet had come only to a handful of worlds. Theirs would have been a loneliness of gods looking out across infinity and finding none to share their thoughts."

Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)