March 2014

Irrational Nonsense


‘Irrational’ and ‘real’ are not incompatible in mathematics or life ..and ‘nonsense’ is either merely pejorative or an assertion that a proposition is meaningless as in ‘lightning runs faster than gravity’; most of these theories/beliefs are not meaningless in this sense. Nevertheless an amusing chart and I assume its title is self-referential.

Wittgenstein has some interesting things to say about ‘nonsense’.

In Ludwig Wittgenstein’s writings, the word “nonsense” carries a special technical meaning which differs significantly from the normal use of the word. In this sense, “nonsense” does not refer to meaningless gibberish, but rather to the lack of sense in the context of sense and reference. In this context, logical tautologies, and purely mathematical propositions may be regarded as “nonsense”. For example, “1+1=2” is a nonsensical proposition.

From an article on ‘nonsense’ in Wikipedia

Angels and Devils

This animation of M.C. Escher’s Angel’s and Demons is quite striking. The animation highlights the significance of Escher’s original work showing a metamorphosis from an angelic universe to one in which good and evil are intertwined and in which what we bring to the foreground is a choice. It brought to mind two phrases: “Inner Demons” and “The Better Angels of our Nature”.

Tai Chi in Space

Chinese astronauts aboard the Shenzhou-10 spacecraft demonstrate how to practice Tai Chi in space.

Remarkable. I had not realised that the Chinese space programme was so advanced.



Ask for forgiveness, forgive others, forgive ourselves. Move on. Strive to be better. Failing, forgive again and strive again.

The prayer in the poster is Buddhist but forgiveness is pretty much the essence of Christianity. In the Gospels Jesus drives this message home time after time:

“Forgive us trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.”

“And to him who strikes you on your cheek, offer the other, and from whoever takes away your cloak, withhold not your coat also.”

“Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”

“Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgement ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you.”

“Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.”

Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.