Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The mysteries of light, or water - or Science?

It's been nine years since John Paul II proposed the Luminous Mysteries for the recitation of the Holy Rosary. I've been saying them rather often, and so I've had an opportunity to consider them - that is, I've not only done the usual meditation which is the point of the Rosary, but I've also done what might be termed "meta-meditation" - I've tried to consider a little about the mysteries themselves, and their arrangement and structure. No, I'm not going to go into this meta-meditation today; there's no space on all the disk drives of Earth that will suffice. I just want to point out something interesting I just noticed.

Other writers have pointed out that these mysteries provide a channel for pondering the Sacraments, and somewhere I mentioned something about how these might also be termed "the Mysteries of Water" because of the significant role water plays in each one. And recently I said how the Rosary might be considered the "hand-held lab" for the Gospels - which might rally begin my suggestion that there is some amazing relation between this prayer and Science.

But it was today's gospel - the story of Zaccheus, which of course falls into that fantastic wild-card msytery, the Third Luminous, "the Proclamation of the Kingdom" - which really underscores the relation of the two. It came, as our priest noted, just after the healing of the blind man yesterday... which I think contains that sad plaint, "kyrie hina blepso = Lord, that I may see!" That was the same motive which made Zaccheus run to find a vantage point, since he was short. (yeah, I said it)

But that is exactly what Science is all about. It is the real reason for experiments. We want to see. We do things with great care, in the most stylized manner, according to rituals far more rigid than any athlete at "play" or any precise society manners consultant - and we do them over and over and over and over; we demand reproducibility from our equipment, our reagent suppliers, from our associates or assistants - or students - whose lab notebooks we inspect or correct; we expect assiduous attention to every possible detail. It is DILIGENCE... it is love, a bring desire for Truth.

Yes, these are the Mysteries of Science... We seek to know more about the One Who said "I am the Truth."

May St. Albert the Great, patron of Science, intercede for us as we work in this field, and may Mary, the Seat of Wisdom, enlighten our eyes to see...


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