mathematics is beautiful (#1)

I’ve been asserting that [the field of] statistics is beautiful, in this series of infographics.  Today’s graphic is about the beauty of mathematics and the beauty that can be found therein.  The final quotation comes from this essay, and may be a central idea that guides me over my academic journey. How does one teach from an aesthetic point of view? I can imagine this in a Montessori classroom, but it is harder for me to visualize in a college or university lecture hall.  There is much here for me to reflect on.


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on perfection

If you are one of my non-Christian readers, I recommend that you skip to the More link and go right to the good stuff. I promise that the good stuff is really good, and it is completely neutral, as far as religion–or lack thereof–is concerned.

As in the past, I seem to have picked up a spiritual direction relationship with someone. As in the past, it is completely informal, just happening naturally as the relationship develops. As in the past, my friend is going through a rough patch and needs to know that they are loved and precious and worthy of all that is good.

Recently this… directee? asked if I have any little devotional books on prayer. So over the weekend, I scanned through my library of devotional and spiritual and theological books — and how did I get so many?! — and picked a few titles for them.  One is a particular favorite, Letters of Direction, by Abbé Henri de Tourville. French spirituality at his time was very practical, concerned with living our lives in this world, in our time, to the glory of God.

As I flipped open the book, it landed in the section called Humility, on a page with two short reflections on perfection. I think I needed to read them. And I doubt I’m the only one.

Continue reading “on perfection”

self-giving love

When there is no food, a pelican pierces her own breast to feed her young.
Pelican, from a medieval bestiary; Museum Meermanno, MMW, 10 B 25, Folio 32r. Pelican

At the heart of the Christian faith is the reality that the whole world – human animals, non-human animals, plants, bodies of water – is profoundly rooted in self-giving love.

the Rev. Broderick Greer, in a wonderful reflection on the actions of Kim Davis

A little irony

I was amused to see the topic of today’s Friday Five, because a short time earlier, I had chosen this quotation to print up and post in the office kitchen today:

Looking for and enjoying beauty is a way to nourish the soul.
The universe is in the habit of making beauty.
There are flowers and songs, snowflakes and smiles,
acts of great courage, laughter between friends,
a job well done, the smell of fresh-baked bread.
Beauty is everywhere.
— Matthew Fox
It just sang in my heart this morning. Yesterday’s was a fun one:

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems,
but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.
— Herm Albright (1876 – 1944)

I owe a thank you

… to Katya of Seeking Chivalry for the quotation in my tagline above. She offered several to me, and a link to where I could find more, and this one really sang for me.

Thank you, Katya!