Full Disclosure (part 1)
It’s come to my attention that there is something I need to make sure everyone knows incase it’s thought I’m misleading anyone.
I recently received an email from a friend that asked for help with a child’s maths homework. It made me want to make sure everyone knows this. Read very carefully: I am not very good at maths.
Does running a website about geometry in nature mean that everyone thinks I’m good at maths?
I’m telling you now that I AM NOT.
I’m not a whizz with algebra or decimals or fractions. I achieved a minimal pass in the teenage GCSE exam then I got out of there as fast as I could. That was the end of my official maths journey. And it’s all long forgotten. But…
What I am really good at is PATTERN.
I see pattern in lots of things. Patterns in 2D, patterns in 3D and patterns in time and space, patterns in nature.
Full Disclosure (part 2)
Full Disclosure (pt 2): To follow is another fact I need you to know, this is the bit to you need to remember.
Pattern is how numbers relate to each other, it’s how they talk, how they interact.
Being good at patterns makes me good at seeing how a number presents itself within another. That is the type of number I am good at. Whether you consider this maths or not is for you to decide.
Full Disclosure on the Numbers I am good at.
I am good at number as Shape and Pattern. (Not so good at number as values or number as measurements)
Pattern is where number presents itself in its purest form. It’s how numbers fit together.
And what we have come to call ‘geometry’ is the manner by which we move these numbers around. Through a series of rotations, translations or reflections and we have another number in front of us.
Full Disclosure on Patterns in Nature.
Now for the Nature part of the Full Disclosure, which is the next bit to remember.
The pattern that we see in a shell is a clue to the animal’s rules of growthIan Stewart The Beauty of Numbers in Nature
For more on shell making and the laws that govern growth have a read of Dr. Helen Scales article ” Searching for Nature’s Spirals” she wrote for the Smart Happy Project magazine.
Seeing the pattern means we can begin to understand the laws that brought it into existence. It is an insight into why we are here. It prompts us to question our very existence and to see how we fit into the natural world as part of a whole.
“Fit into the whole?! “
Did I skip too far ahead there? Stick with me here. We need this. Now is the time to journey into an understanding of how we fit into nature’s larger picture. We fit into this pattern in nature so very perfectly we just need to re-awaken our awareness of it. It is in our consciousness, if we look anew we will to be able to see it.
If you are a fan of Fibonacci but not a fan of numbers then it’s easier to think of the Fibonacci sequence as a pattern. The numbers of the sequence as shapes present to us a pattern of a spiral that is found so many places in the natural world. Patterns in nature will lead us to understand so many of the relationships we see in the natural world.
As an aside to the current theme of this article, just take a minute for me here and follow this thought….a number exists yet we have many different ways to express it: ‘5’; ‘five’; a set of apples that number five in total; a shape with 5 sides all the same length; the roman numeral V; five lines that all conjoin at the same point….. I could go on. Can you see what I’m getting at? the number exists, we just have different ways to express it. We just live in an age where numbers are seen as a huge deal and so maybe we put too much emphasis on the digit itself and could think more along lines of expression of a number.
To summarise my Full Disclosure on numbers and patterns in nature:
I can show you how to ‘see’ the great patterns that we fit into. This is why we look for numbers in nature. I can show you how these appear in your life everyday. Through understanding this you may very well become better at the number problems you came looking to solve, or at the very least you will have a better relationship with those problems.
I can make you better at understanding the qualities of number and the beauty and simplicity of how they fit together as shapes . I can teach you a language. The language of shape and number and how they talk through patterns in nature. But it’s all a journey – it’s for you to decide if you want to come along.
That is what I am good at.
So if you want to see the patterns in nature, stick with me.