On the flight from Amsterdam to Cape Town, my seat assignment was changed, so instead of an incredible view out my window,
I saw the middle of a huge wing for eleven hours. So disappointing! Thankfully, there were some good films available. My favorite was a new release from April, 2016:
The Man Who Knew Infinity, starring Dev Patel and Jeremy Irons.This poignant biography recounts the life of Srinivasa Ramanujan,
a brilliant but unschooled clerk from the slums of Madras, India.In 1913, Srinivasa wrote to the famous mathematician, Professor G.H. Hardy, who was teaching at Cambridge University. He asked Professor Hardy’s opinion on several ideas about mathematics. Hardy, recognizing the Indian man’s genius, arranged to have him come to Trinity College in Cambridge to study and collaborate with him.
The movie is based on Robert Kanigel’s 1991 book about Srinivasa Ramanujan, and it provides evocative insights into the relationship between Ramanujan, a devout Indian Hindu “Prince of Intuition,” and his mentor, Dr. Hardy, who was an eccentric and emotionally withdrawn “Apostle of Proof.” As comes out in the story, Ramanujan worked tirelessly, but to his own detriment, ignoring signs of developing tuberculosis until it was too late. He died at only thirty-two, but he left behind a legacy of mathematical theory that is still being probed today. Srinivasa Ramanujan seemed like such an admirable person that I couldn’t help but feel our world really lost a lot in losing him. It made me think of other geniuses who died young: John Keats, Emily Bronte, Percy Shelley, Alexander the Great, Mozart, Schubert, Van Gogh, Jeanne d’Arc, Saint Thérèse of Lisieux…the list goes on! How would our world be enriched if these brilliant people had lived longer lives? On the other hand, what about Jesus, who died at thirty-three? His dying wasn’t a great loss, though; it was a great gain! His death and resurrection provided forgiveness for our sins, and because of his sacrifice we are offered regeneration and resurrection life! Jesus knows not only infinity, but beyond!
Thank you, Jesus, for laying down your life for our sakes.
The world will continue to plumb the depths of your love forever!
“And can it be that I should gain
An interest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain—
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?”
(Charles Wesley, 1738)