Friday, April 13, 2007

The Stuff of the World is Mind-Stuff

The stuff of the world is mind-stuff.
— Sir Arthur Eddington
The reality of the world is not what it really seems to the naked eye. Those things which seem so solid to us, when viewed at the atomic and subatomic level, are actually the whirling of tiny charged particles — energy. The amazing relationship between energy and matter was discovered by Albert Einstein and stated in his famous formula E=mc2. Arthur Eddington, an astrophysicist of the early twentieth century, was instrumental in announcing Einstein’s general theory of relativity to the English-speaking world.

Recognizing that the same human mind that perceives the concreteness of material things can also understand the abstractness of physical reality at the subatomic level, that can comprehend the world in mathematical equations such as Einstein’s, Eddington came to the conclusion that “the stuff of the world is mind-stuff.”

Sir James Jeans, a contemporary of Eddington, basically agreed with him, except he thought that this mind-stuff was more mathematical in nature. He concluded that the universe is “the thought of a mathematical thinker.”

We live in a world of “mind-stuff” that can be understood by language and logic, and has such mathematical elegance that it points us to a world created by a mind — the Mind of God.

In biology, we are learning more and more that DNA really is a genetic code, a language that conveys information and lays out the blueprint for every form of life, even down to the tiniest micro-organism. The information stored in your DNA is so rich and vast, if it could be transcribed in book form, it would fill up many, many volumes. And that DNA instructs each cell in your body, guiding its construction and regulating its function. Truly, it is mind-stuff.

The stuff of the world is mind-stuff. The author of the book of Hebrews understood this almost two thousand years ago when he said, “By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible” (Hebrews 11:3).