What are the building blocks of the universe? Are they symmetrical, or chaotic? For how long can the material world last if it’s built with streams of chaotic particles? Why is the phi symbol so important to our world? Why do natural forms built with the golden mean incorporated into their structure seem generally pleasing to the human eye?
Chef Marco Pierre White has said that nature is the true artist, and that a chef should let nature show herself off instead of forcing the ingredients into an unnatural or counter-intuitive presentation.
What gives pleasure and exalts the mind and spirit, then, is nature in all its varied moods. As a painter I strive to capture scenes where light is focused in a particularly moody way: a sunset, a cloudy Northwest day on Rattlesnake Ridge, a turbulent sea.
I never know what the hour will be when I emerge out of the deep recesses of my mind and return to the ‘real’ world. Sometimes only an hour has passed and I have composed a thousand words; other times I emerge to find myself in the mid-afternoon with three or four thousand words on the page.
I was lying peacefully in bed this morning, in love with the world, and this life. A feeling of gentle peace had swept over me, even though I heard the rain beginning to fall outside. More rain? Kate says the climate has changed, we now live in a newly tropical rainfall region, and I should just get used to it.
Perhaps it is best to approach beauty with humility. (I say this even while having to admit that beauty often catches us unawares, as when I first heard Mahler’s Eighth Symphony or, as one who had never been an admirer of tapestries, came upon some by William Morris on display at the Cincinnati Art Museum one afternoon and was reduced to tears.) Great works of art can surprise us in this way.