Egon the rabbit and me: Refugees

I: These days, a lot of war refugees are coming.

Egon: If you talk about nothing can help human being, I had enough from you. You could live like rabbits. You could live like clever dolphins.

I: When I think about the cause, yes, nothing can help human being. The people who made the cause don't care at all at far distance. I just think about connection with me.

Egon: You have any connection with refugees?

I: Refugees are enormous chance for this country, at the same time, they are huge danger, too. This country has the aging problem, decreasing population problem. If 800,000 refugees could be the positive power for this country, this country would have huge success. If they join to the industry of this country, contribute to the knowledge, pay tax, pension, medical insurance, ... what a enormous chance. On the other hand, if they became just a burden, that would be a huge problem.

Egon: Human always fail since they are stupid. Even they know it, they will fail.

I: I think this is similar to the child education. Child education is a enormous chance. But if someone did without love, the failure is unavoidable. I teach math to children two hours per week. I hope this helps children. Actually, this helps me a lot. I found it is fun. Taking care of my friend's children is also fun. Although, that might be because it is just a one or two days per month.

Egon: Then, you are now talking with a rabbit. Are you OK? I am afraid that your math students are OK or not.

I: Actually, I like people of this country. Well, probably a specific country doesn't matter. I like people in general.

Egon: You sounds like strange as a human being.

I: I would like to teach math to children of refugees. If my German or English is fine, I would like to teach if there is some demand. I would like to learn their idea.

Egon: Is it your idea? How much you can do? It doesn't make sense if you could not continue for a long time.

I: I think I can do it two hours per week.

Egon: Humm. You sounds like you are a big mouse and do too little.

I: I did teach four hours per week for two years, I still want to teach Berlin kids two hours per week, so maybe two hours per week for refugees is a good amount.

Egon: ...

I: A big chance is simultaneously a big danger. In the case of the child education, you usually have more time. But, I am thinking two years later. In 2017, the people of this country don't like foreign people or not is depends on now.

Egon: What is your expectation?

I: I don't know. One of my friends, who is not a xenophobia, expects the government will fail.

Egon: First of all, a xenophobia cannot be your friend. You don't need explain that. Will you prepare to run away from here?

I: Not really. One man in this country attacked me. But many people accepted me. So I will be a part time fighter.

Egon: Fighter? A part time?

I: A fighter to incomprehension and intolerance. I will fight them by part time, two hours a week, with a weapon called teaching. No military power won incomprehension and intolerance. I believe my part time fight has much more chance.

Egon: You can always win by a military power. Human being has a power to self destruction. Only human being can be incomprehension and intolerance. Think logically, if there is no human being in the world, all the problem will be solved.

I: When all the strange people like me, and everyone becomes normal. The self destruction of human being will be realized. So I just postpone to think about that happens when it happened.

Egon: Then, where do you start.

I: This one. Conversation with you, Egon.

Egon: ...

To the Readers of this blog. When you know something I could do for refugees in Berlin. Please leave it as a comment. Thank you!

Egon the rabbit and me: Inconvenient brain

``If the school year was a month, I would be 25th grade.'', said a eight  years old girl to me. ``Yes, if a month had four weeks, and a week was the school year, what you will be?'' But she has already lost her interest. I usually found her idea interesting.

I: Egon, do you love someone?

Egon: Love? What does it mean?

I: ... It's hard to explain. If I love someone, I care someone, I wish this someone is all right, I wish this someone is happy.

Egon: If that is the love, maybe I love everything.

I: I love someone. But not everyone.

Egon: Why not?

I: I don't know. If I love a woman, I wanted to be with her. But not all women.

Egon: I see you love someone, but why you want to be with her?

I: I don't know why. But usually if I love someone, I want to be with someone.

Egon: Sounds good.

I: I don't know. Actually it's not good in case that someone whom I love doesn't like me. A few women honestly told me that is disgusting and two women made it clear that I am disgusting.

One of Egon's ear is listening to me, but the other ear is pointed to somewhere else. Maybe he is bored talking with me.

I: I like a story. In the story, one man send a flower everyday to a woman. He spends some time with her every day. But the woman is sick or something and may not survive so long. One day, a gray man came to him and said he was wasting his time.

Egon: ...

I: I think he is not wasting time.

Egon: Wasting time or not is just a perception.

I: A gray man's point is he could find other woman who could spend more time with him. One point in the future, he lost her and it would be hard for him.

Egon: Every second there is a chance to lose something. A long life is not necessary good.

I felt a cool wind, I felt gentle sunshine. I heard Egon is eating leaves.

I: Are you happy, Egon?

Egon: I don't know what your question is. Why you asked me?

I: I use to think happiness is important. But, I am now not sure of that. When I see you, I think that thinking happiness sometimes causes me unhappy.

Egon: But you cannot stop thinking, can you?

I: I cannot.

Egon: You were also once like that eight years old girl. She told me you look sometimes sad.

I: I am not sure I am sad or not. But I better consider her intuition.

Egon: It seems you know what your heart talk, but you cannot follow that. I found your brain is inconvenient. You can think, you can feel, that makes you sad.

An inconvenient brain. Too much is too less. If I could think more, that makes me sad. If I could feel joy more, I can also feel more pain. The gray man also represents so called reasonable idea. What did Bernard Shaw say about a reasonable person...

By the way, 100th grade is the answer of the early question. You would say that I only have a lot of stupid answers, but I don't have any important answer, Egon.


I thank to I.M.R. who told me a grade could be just an arbitrary number.


Egon the rabbit and me: The wonder of finding an invisible planet (3)

Part 3

I: We could continue the story about cage. I actually think thorough it. However, I haven't had a clear idea on it yet. I would like to back to the story about finding invisible planet. How the wonder changes to a great thing.

Egon: ...

I: A person found the ``Things fall down'' and ``how the planets move'' are based on the same rule. People calculate the orbit of planets, they found every planet follows the rule. Someone found a new dwarf planet by a telescope, it also followed the rule. At least people could not find a planet that doesn't follow the rule in the solar system. When a better telescope was created, the telescope found a new planet, still the planet follows the rule. People started believing ``Things fall down in the universe.''

Egon: You, or human being observes the universe and found the same rule many times. No exception could be found.

I: Actually they found an exception. One planet doesn't follow the rule exactly. Its orbit was only slightly differs from the expected orbit, but still unexpected. People had two opinions for this. The first idea is the rule, the law of gravity, has something wrong. It maybe a good approximation, but not exactly correct.

Egon: ...

I: The second idea is we have an invisible planet somewhere, that causes this unexpected movement. The second idea still believes the law of gravity is correct, just we don't have enough knowledge of the solar system yet.

Egon: You believe the ``Things fall down'' rule, and tend to have the second idea. When everything is expected, you think your knowledge of the solar system is completed.

I: Yes. Maybe that is the reason I don't feel this is a magic. If we could not find the invisible planet as we computed, this is more big problem for me. Since the law of gravity doesn't work, ``Things doesn't fall down there.'' Things doesn't fall at somewhere, I could not believe that. So I rather believe there is an invisible planet. Then, people found the planet as they computed, this is no magic, but it is a great things. We maybe have some understanding of part of the universe. I still have a consistent world. That could be the foundation of the next understanding. Isn't it a great thing?

Egon: I'm not sure. You told me you don't know the origin of the gravity. You only know how it behave as a law. Your law of gravity could be a special case of more large law.  Then your friend may think, there could be a planet that doesn't follow the law of gravity. Because it is just a special case. It's great if you can fly around without wings. ``Things fall'' can be wrong at somewhere in the universe.

I: I cannot against that idea. I only know the law. It's like when I try to fix my program, I only know when I push this button, then the program crashes. But I don't know why, what did I wrong. I only know the push-this-button-crash-the-program as a law.  You might be right. But, the physicists observe the universe quite a lot and they now believe ``Things fall down in the universe.'' I also believe it. The law of preservation of energy, the law of inertial, and so on, are basically the same. Ultimately, we don't know why, but the observation are the same all the time, therefore, we call them ``a law.''  It is always so, I don't feel it's a magic.

Egon: Your friend might be a genus. Since she might think it is a magic.

I: By the way, one of my physics teacher asked me at one exam, ``Why the things fall?'' I answer, ``I don't know.'' The teacher said, ``Because there is the law of gravity.'' So, I understood this teacher doesn't know what the law of gravity means.

Egon: People tend to think if there is a name, they think they know it. First time we met, you ask to kids, ``What is this?'' ``It's  Egon the rabbit.'' ``I see.'' What did you see, really? What did you know about me?

I: I just know you have a name. I know nothing about you, of course. I lived in not my born place. Some people asked me, ``Where are you come from?'' I answered my born country's name. It is nice if the conversation expands, but, some people behave as they understand my personality and everything because where I was born. I know that's impossible. When I know you are a rabbit, how I could understand any of your personality? I know I just know you are a rabbit whose name is Egon.

Egon: OK.

I: ... I feel no magic on some preservation law. For me, something is gone, it means someone took it. Things don't magically disappear. If I keep some cookies at my home and one point they disappear, at that time, one of my friend visited my place. I don't eat that cookies, then?

Egon: You don't think your cookies walk away. You think your friend ate them.

I: Yes. There is the preservation law of cookies. The amount of cookies in my home are preserved unless someone ate them. I believe the preservation law of cookies. If I cannot see them, someone ate them. Even I didn't see who ate them, I believe someone must ate them. It's the same that a visible planet moves unexpected way, there must be an invisible planet.

Egon: You are old, you just forget you ate them. ``Things fall down.'' Your cookies may fall down under the table.

I: If I forget, well, still someone (which is me) ate them. So the cookies preservation law still hold. Under my table is still in my room. The cookies preservation law holds, either. This comes from Feynman 's ``Dennis the Menace'' story. This story is fantastic and ...

Egon: You believe in your small world. It sounds like against your learning story.

I: If I just believe it, I stay in my world. But, I will see outside based on my belief, and this is a difference from just staying my world. I always look outside based on my belief to expand my ``consistent'' world. I am standing inside my world, but, look at outside.

Egon: ...

I: When I found a case that doesn't hold the preservation law, I know I am on the edge of my world and I am facing the outside of my world. If I could not find my cookies, I could not find it in my room, friends were there but they didn't take them, I haven't eaten them either... But I found my room has more carbon dioxide than before and increasing the temperature a bit. Maybe my friend burned my cookies whatever the reason. These cookies are still in the room by the form of carbon dioxide gas. I need to expand my cookie preservation law. It looks no more cookies, but atoms are preserved. This is how science progress. To make my own world larger, I always need to find something wonder. When we understand them, we lost a wonder, but still we have a new great thing. This is one of my favorite part of science.

Egon: Then, you still believe the cookie preservation law holds in other houses on the earth. It's like a religion that you ``believe'' it.

I: I think science is a kind of religion. The dogma is ``human being can correctly understand a part of universe.'' But, we need facts that can be measured by machines. Someone said this is right doesn't matter in the science, we always need to reproduce the law independently. There is a small difference from many other religions.

He seems to lost the interest of the conversation with me. I explained the Feynman's ``Dennis the Menace'' story to him. But, Egon continues to eat leaves of carrots without any words.


Thanks for H.H. to give me the hint of this story. Thanks for my friends who discuss about the wonder with me. Thanks to my small students and also my small teachers who always gave me hints to re-think myself. I hope R.M. enjoy this story who inspire me a lot.


Egon the rabbit and me: The wonder of finding an invisible planet (2)

Part 2

I: Something rings a bell. Why I don't feel wonder for finding an invisible planet by the law of gravity. One reason may be because my world has been a little bit expanded. However, I don't think that is enough large. I feel there still is a huge world that I don't know yet. So I hope I am not such arrogant that I think I know everything and thus I don't feel wonder anymore. I think I learn a little bit, so the wonders became knowledge. Some wonder and magic has changed to some great things, knowledge.

Egon: ...

I: I didn't find these knowledge by myself, I just learned. I hope I understand them, not just memorized them.

Egon: ...

I: It's not exactly accurate words, but the law of gravity is all about ``Things fall down''. Human being observed the universe for a long time, literally a few thousand years. And people found ``Things fall down'' in many places in the universe.

Egon: Human being accumulate such knowledge for a long time.

I: We don't know the reason of gravity. Recently, there is some progress about Higgs boson, thus, our knowledge is a bit expanded about the gravity. But, I think we still don't understand the origin of the gravity. Nevertheless, we always see the ``things fall down''.  I throw a stone, it falls down. Someone throws a ball, it falls down. If I jump, I fall down to the earth. If you jump, you will fall down to the earth.

Egon: No rabbit can be kept in the air. Some might say.

I: You might think it is normal. But ``normal'' is how I or you ``feel'', usually it is a fact that is familiar with me. However, familiar fact is not necessary to be a universal fact. It is just ``that was always true in my town.'' This is not necessary true in other towns.  We see ``things fall down'' on the earth all the time. But is it general in the universe?  How is it at 1000 light years away? How can you think the law of gravity is the same to on the earth at such far distance? If we visit to the moon, our weight becomes lighter. Do you still think the law of gravity is the same everywhere in the universe? (Though, the law of gravity on the moon is actually the same to the earth.)

Egon: Something is normal on the earth doesn't necessary true somewhere in the universe. Sounds reasonable.

I: I always see ``things fall down.'' Sometimes I think I found exceptions. For example, a bird flies, or a fire balloon floats, but if I think them more deeply, I always found they are not exceptions. A fire balloon falls down when it lost the heat, a bird cannot fly forever.  I don't know why, but ``Things always fall down.'' Physics can only describes how that force behaves, not why: Between two objects, there is a pulling force each other. That force is proportional to each mass, reciprocal to the square of the distance, and it is proportional to a constant.

Egon: That is just a detail.

I: We can write it as F = GMm/r^2. This is independent from some natural language, for instance, English, Japanese, German. And there is less ambiguity. So I found it useful, but, the meaning should be the same in any languages, English, German, Japanese, or math. One of the meaning of this is ``Things fall down.''

Egon: ...

I: ``Feeling normal'' is a kind of easy. But if I stay always in a certain normal situation, I could not expand my world. I could stay there. But, the world catches me at some point. Because the world is always changing. If I would like to live in the changing world, I need to update my world, too, I would like to expand my world bit by bit. I think this is learning. I am an software engineer. If I stop learning, I will be useless at some point. Because the technology is always evolving. I constantly need to expand my world, the world here is my knowledge and skills. I am in my knowledge world, that is easy since I already understand them. But, I cannot stand still if I work on this world. I need to study, confuse, make mistakes to understand the new area. That is a quite cumbersome work.

Egon: You made your cage and became familiar with that. But when you don't satisfied it anymore, you need to update it. Or the cage doesn't work at some point. On the other hand, your cage gives you some safety and comfort. You don't know whether your new cage will be comfortable and safe.

I: Any cage became old and I cannot live in it forever. Either I need to update my cage continuously or I need to build again when the cage collapsed. I rather try to update it continuously rather than experiencing a disaster. Most of catastrophe can be avoided if you respond early. I want to learn from other catastrophe.

Egon: You may need courage. You can ignore the outside of your world. You can hate the change and new things. You could hope you can still hide your mother's behind.  ``Please don't open the door. Let me alone. I love now, I familiar with it. Stop the world.'' This could be one way to live.

I: That's a choice. What is important is the issue. Any animal that has no interesting to the outside of the world, they usually tend to extinct. So the extinction is not an issue, such life is fine.

Egon: Even one is protected by a cage?

I: No cage can be perfect. It will break one day. I am just talking about the nature. If a group stays only one small place and never go outside of the region, they are in danger. For instance, natural disaster can destroy them. An outbreak can destroy them.  But this group is interested in outside the world, they will spread. Even one part of the group eliminated by a natural disaster or a disease outbreak, spread group has more chance to survive.  It is just a risk management. Don't put all one's eggs in one basket. Children are usually curious for many things. Because they need to adapt to the surrounding world. A life form has more chance to survive if it constantly breaks the own cage, expand to larger world, adapt to the world. Because the risk is distributed. I think it is wisdom to survive that people encourage to curious to other world. It is a kind of investment. There is a risk to expand, however, no investment means no success. Moreover, we have children. Children are new of the group. If you want to have nothing new, children are harmful for that idea. But, I think if we don't refuse existence of children, I don't see the future.

Egon: Future may be overrated. Some might welcome extinction. How you are so sure that having a future is good thing. Or you can be one of domestic animal. Someone else takes care of your cage. That would be one way to live.

I: I am not attracted those ideas.

Egon: I can imagine, a lot of people will take one month food for freedom and life.

I: ...

Egon: You once told me the difference between human and animal is human can see the future and make a plan for it, animal is otherwise. The world of rabbit and the world of human, which has more future?

I: ... ``If the bee extincted, all the life on the earth would die. If the human extincted, all other life would be flourish.''...

Egon: ...

The discussion goes to a bit different direction. I thought the feeling of wonder is needed for expanding my own world and break my cage. If I don't feel the wonder anymore, and I stop looking outside of the world, that day my mind and my possibility would die. It is hard to keep up the world. Sometimes I just wanted to stop looking around. Rejecting new idea and people sounds easy. I could stop learning something new. The problem is the time doesn't stand still. At this moment, someone new is born, someone find a new idea. The world is always changing. The old would die soon or later. Will I die together with them, or will I create the new world?  This is my decision. If a system harm us, will I die together, or will I create a new better system with some cost? I was thinking these ideas next to Egon.

(To be continued)


Egon the rabbit and me: The wonder of finding an invisible planet (1)

Part 1

I feel peace when I sit beside Egon. He is just eating leaves of carrot. I talk with him. In reality, I may just talk with myself. Still I feel there is a conversation with him.

I: One of my friends told me, ``It's a wonder that mathematics and physics find an invisible planet by computing something. It's like a magic.''

Egon: ...

I: Actually I don't feel wonder. It's great we can find a planet, but I don't feel it as a magic.

Egon: ...

Egon usually doesn't answer a topic which he is not interested in. I thought he was not interested in this topic, but, actually not.

Egon: Thinking something wonder, it is great, I presume.

I: Humm, well, there is the law of gravity, and if you think it is real, finding an invisible planet is not a magic. It is a great thing, but not a magic.

Egon: Not that. The greatness of thinking wonder. I think you saw a lot of wonder or magics in the world when you are a child.

I: ...

Egon: If you lost your sense of wonder, I recommend that you think about it. Why you had a lot of wonder.

I: Why I had a sense of wonder. I still feel wonder, it is just different from before.

Egon: You are sure? I feel wonder when I couldn't find it in my world. I never saw something like that.

I: My world has expanded. So I lost the wonder?

Egon: The world, or the universe is huge. I don't know how large your world is. But, I bet your world is less than half of the universe.

I: ...

Egon: What do you say if I said, ``I am a rabbit, so I know everything about rabbit.''

I: I believe you don't know something about rabbit.

Egon: You gave me a mushroom yesterday. It was delicious. That was my first time of eating mushroom. It was a new discovery. I suppose there are more food in the world which I don't know yet.

I: Do you suggest that I don't look outside anymore because I am satisfied current my world?

Egon: Your friend is not a scientist, and not a child, isn't she?

I: No, she isn't.

Egon: That friend said, ``It's a wonder that mathematics and physics find an invisible planet by computing something. It's like a magic.'' How nice it is.

I: Someone who don't see the outside their world doesn't feel any wonder. Because everything around is familiar. Do you think I am in that situation?

Egon: Maybe.

I: I need to think what I still feel wonder.

Egon: Sounds good.

I try to remember when I had a lot of sense of wonder. Most of everything was magic. At that time, touching new knowledge was fun.  My family had a series of encyclopedia. I spend a lot of time for reading them: World climate, world map, history, plants, insects, fish, human body, and so on. I still remember the illustration of inside the earth, explanation of plate tectonics and the mechanism of earthquake. It also shows how the plates organized and the distribution of earthquake points and volcanoes, they match. It shows how we understand the relationship between earthquake and volcanoes. I just realized, my parents gave me some milestones here and there, even they didn't understand what is in the encyclopedia.

I and Egon had no words for a while. Because I was thinking about the wonder. I don't know why Egon was silent. Maybe he just didn't have a thing to talk. I wonder: Did I become arrogant? Did I think my world is enough large? Is that the reason I lost the sense of wonder?... Maybe I became arrogant, at least partially. But I think I am not yet completely arrogant. Some wonder might diminished because I could understand some of them now. I became familiar with my world. But I still have a huge unknown world beyond the edge of my small world. Expanding my world a bit, that might be a leaning. Therefore, my wonder thing became a great thing. I slowly started talking again.

(To be continued)


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