By the end of his 60 minutes talk, he was not only sure he had primed his audience for their questions; he had also moved from the phenomenon to models and their predictive nature, looping the predictions all the way back to phenomena with the help of the fuzziness of quotations from Archimedes to Asimov.
So what did Arthur begin with? “Only 6 phyla of 21 known to humankind have eyes”. Now, that speaks to something that Nature or ecology represents in evolutionary terms. But it piques our conditioned perceptual anchors to vision and sight. And while our visual cortex are expected to be different from other species, to know that anamorphic art began contemporaneous with understanding of light traveling the shortest distance in a straight line.
Thereon, the evolution of physics itself seems like between the observation of ‘strange’ phenomena, and holding forth models that could predict them. There have been struggles between those who knew math and those who did not even receive formal education. It was news to me that Michael Faraday was a mere book binder who sketched visions of magnetism from reading and reflecting through titles he bound. It took the math from Maxwell to find relevance to Faraday's concepts of magneto-electric fields.
Show me the place, help me roll away the stone
Show me the place, I can't move this thing alone
Show me the place where the word became a man
Show me the place where the suffering began
A thread of light, a particle, a wave
But there were chains, so I hastened to behave
There were chains, so I loved you like a slave”
Show me the place I've forgotten I don't know
Show me the place where my head is bendin' low
Show me the place where you want your slave to go
In my own sharing at the event, I emphasized that Dick’s life was a testimony to knowledge being an embodiment of this integration, as an inward journeying -a spiritual process in itself. In hindsight, and on return from the event, I recalled another expression that Dick often used. “If anyone would ask, what’s the goal of awareness? Nothing”. Pithiness in his wit came through in what one of his oldest students in class had to say. Sr Maria recalled her class in 1977 asking Dick to close with a parting statement. “Chew what you eat” is what he said.
Perhaps, the evidence of clarity comes through most in Sr Cynthia Gonslaves, FMM and one of Dick McHugh's longest collaborators in NLP process work. "Dick had his flaws too, like any other human being. But he was genuinely uplifting and caring. His parting words after any major interaction would be 'All the Best'. " Leo Lobo revealed how he found nature's metaphor from the farms of his childhood near Mangalore come through in the work of Dick. We were all plants whose seeds were sown to be bright and healthy beings with a potency unique and nourishing to be part of our ecosystem.
Unlike Eisenkraft’s light at the end of the tunnel, life’s always strange, and not merely when a scientist stumbles upon a dis-confirming pattern. Or a grammarian’s calling out of a violation of speech in language. Never mind that the mathematicians caught up with the visionaries in the physical and metaphysical worlds.
What an interesting start to 2019. All the very best to you, dear reader.