Saturday, June 1, 2013

SOUL Sparkles in You


Julio C. Rivas, CS

There are individuals who express a high dosage of spiritual qualities, and do so even when they are being marginalized by others.  Whether these individuals believe in God or not, they are still expressing SOUL’s spiritual qualities. 

Have you ever heard of the 20th century mathematical genius, Amalie Noether?  Most people haven’t.  She is one of those admirable individuals whose human character expressed so much of SOUL. 

Albert Einstein called her the most “significant” and “creative” female mathematician of all time.  After Einstein published his general theory of relativity in 1915, she invented her own theorem called Noether’s theorem.  It unites symmetry in nature and the universal laws of conservation.  To some physicists and mathematicians today her theorem is as important as Einstein’s general theory.  It underpins a great deal of today’s cutting edge research in physics. 

Lisa Randall, professor of particle physics and cosmology at Harvard says that Noether’s theorem elucidates critical relationships: “… energy, momentum and other quantities we take for granted gain meaning and even greater value when we understand how these quantities follow symmetry in time and space.”  Ranson Stephens, another physicist, says that her theorem “is the backbone on which all of modern physics is built.”

Emmy (as she was called) was persistent, resilient and disciplined.  Although her father was a distinguished math professor at the universities of Erlangen and Heidelberg, she was not allowed to matriculate because of rules barring women.  What did she do?  Emmy audited all the courses at the University of Erlangen and did so well on her final exams that she was granted a bachelor’s degree.  This opened doors for her to do graduate work at the University of Gottingen and later to earn a doctorate (summa cum laude) from the University of Erlangen. 

Emmy’s brilliance and friendly disposition earned her the respect and support of her male peers and superiors.  David Hilbert, a top mathematician of her day, tried to get her hired as a professor at the University of Gottingen but, because of the administration’s biases against women, she was refused.  So Hilbert hired her as one of his staff assistants and she became a permanent “guest lecturer” at the university.  Her relationships with her male peers were so strong that they welcomed her as a fellow swimmer at their male-only pool.

Emmy was devoted to her students and they were devoted to her.  Her students, who were primarily young men, were known at the university as Noether’s boys. 

She loved mathematics and cared nothing for personal possessions.  She often responded to challenges with a sense of humor.  She laughed and smiled often. 

Being a Jew she was fired from her post when Nazism took over in Germany.  But Einstein helped her secure a permanent position at Bryn Mawr College, where she was deeply valued by staff and students. 

Whether someone is religious, or not, SOUL is the delineator of their being, as it is of all being.  We are constructed of SOUL’s spiritual qualities and when we express them we can leap over troubles. 

LOVE-SOUL incites our Christly qualities and might into fructiferous action.  Our Christ-spirit obliterates hateful, ignorant, insidious and obstinate resistance to LOVE-enforced wisdom, health and progress.  Like it has done so always, man’s expression of MIND’s intelligent, valiant and loving ideas – the Christ-spirit -- will consistently produce salubrious and enhancing outcomes. 

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