Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Meditation on the Elements (revelatione natura) – 12 July 2011

“Instead of being overwhelmed by the universe, I think that perhaps one of the deepest experiences a scientist can have, almost approaching a religious awakening, is to realize that we are children of the stars, and that our minds are capable of understanding the universal laws that they obey.  The atoms in our bodies were forged on the anvil of nucleo-synthesis within an exploding star aeons before the birth of the solar system.  Our atoms are older than the mountains.  We are literally made of star-dust.  Now these atoms, in turn, have coalesced into intelligent beings capable of understanding the universal laws governing that event.” (333)
                     - Michio Kaku
                       Hyperspace (1994)

Ever since turning to science in the late 90’s as the primary resource and touchstone for a lived spirituality, I’ve sought new meditative foci to orient me to the objective dimensions of reality.  As I moved out of mythology and ancient mystical ideals into an experience of reality infused and informed by the revelations of the modern sciences, I became inspired to meditate on the Periodic Table as a way of reflecting on Nature at a fundamental level; i.e., as a naturalistic form of lectio divina (i.e., the monastic habit of devout reading) ­­– and through it come to a deeper communion with the Earth & Cosmos and ourselves as an expression of the universe.  The “Table of the Elements” has come to replace the “Ancient Four” elements on which I had meditated for 30 years prior to my ‘conversion’ to science from various religious quests.