Sunday, December 25, 2016


Design, Design, Design:
 You are amazing; you are a walking miracle.


I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well (Psalm 139:14).

        The Bodies Revealed Exposition at the Bossard Library in Gallipolis, Ohio has only one week left.  If you haven’t seen it yet, GO!  You will receive some wondrous insights…….not only the physiological and anatomical aspects of the dozen systems of the human body, but also the spiritual and the philosophical.

        They utilized a new means of preserving by plastinating human organs, blood vessels, bones, muscles, tendons, etc. that freeze the body into the position desired.  Thus these cadavers, transformed into numerous plastinates, seem to come alive doing athletic poses.  You’ve certainly seen gymnastic events in the Olympics.  How can the human body do that…..the flips, the balancing, the jumping, the climbing, the lifts, the running, etc.?  Despite all of the technological advances we can’t design a single robot to duplicate all of these feats.  Even if we could, how long would the contraption last?  

The human body can go on and on for up to about a hundred years with no replacement by spare parts if we take care of it.  When the body has cuts and bruises, it’s programmed to mend and repair itself.  When the body gets sick, it will usually heal itself.  Thanks to our health professionals for helping that healing process along or helping us to compensate for handicaps.  Can a car repair itself?  How long will your car last even with the periodic replacement of parts, oil changes, and repairs?

        This magnificent creation must start out with the Skeletal System of strong bones……206 of them five times stronger than mild steel.  They meet at over 230 joints where they are hooked up by tendons and muscles.  The muscles of the Muscular System contract or relax to move the skeleton.  

That movement requires energy obtained from nutrients that combine with inhaled oxygen of the red corpuscles, both of which are carried by six quarts of blood through a network of some 100,000 miles of blood vessels (arteries, veins, and capillaries) throughout the body that comprise the Cardiovascular System.  A single blood cell might travel 12,000 miles in a single day with each circuit from the heart taking 20 to 60 seconds.  The ten ounce heart is the strongest organ, pumping three ounces of blood with every beat, 2½ billion of them over 75 years, one million barrels, enough to fill three supertankers.
The products of this form of combustion of nutrients is carbon dioxide that is carried by the blood to the lungs and exhaled as part of the Respiratory System.  The lungs have 300 – 500 million grape like structures called trachea.  The kidneys filter out the other waste products in the blood and eliminate them through the Urinary System.  Go to or, or for more detail on each system.

        The Digestive System, emitting two quarts of gastric juices per day with 5 million glands, processes the food that we eat and the liquids that we drink in a great laboratory to produce the building blocks for our body and the products that provide energy to do physical work and to think.  The small intestine is about ten feet long with a surface area of about 1500 square feet.  

        The large intestine is an additional ten feet in length.  Villi cells absorb the nutrients into the blood.  The waste products in digestion are eliminated through the large intestine.  The body produces a new stomach lining every three or four days. 

        The mouth and its teeth prepare the food for the digestive system to process.  Each tooth has a particular function……to bite, to cut, to crush, to chew, etc.  Our teeth are part of our smiles.  If we take care of them, our teeth can last for a century (if we live that long), contributing to the beauty of our bodies.  The jaw and the teeth can exert a pressure of over 100 lbs/in.    

          The Endocrine System provides the hormones, exquisite chemicals that regulate growth, metabolism, and general body function.  The Immune System helps the other systems fight disease in conjunction with the white corpuscles of the blood.  The Lymphatic System picks up fluids leaked from the capillaries, houses white blood cells, and supports the immune system.

          At this point we’re just ghosts…….walking skeletons with muscles and organs.  We need something to protect these vital organs and systems.  The largest and heaviest organ of the body, the skin does this as part of the Integumentary System as shown below.  The skin synthesizes Vitamin D and is the largest sensory organ, through which we feel external stimuli.  Furthermore, it gives our bodies a great beauty.

          The hypothalamus of the brain acts like a thermostat to maintain the body temperature at 98.6 °F.  When the temperature of the body increases, it signals the skin’s glands.  The evaporating sweat absorbs body heat.  When cold, it sends a signal to the muscles to shiver, thus generating heat.

        The Senses. Even with this new coat of skin we’re not even zombies yet.  We must be able to sense our environment and communicate with others.  We feel through nerves on the skin.  The pupils of the eyes adjust for brightness; and convert reflected light of different frequencies to give color into an image which the lens focuses upon the retina, consisting of about 100 million rods and 7 million cones.  For speech, the vibrations of vocal cords of the communicator in conjunction with air from the lungs and the position of the tongue produce intelligible signals through generated sound waves of different frequency, emphasis, and volume.  The ears transform sound waves with different nuances into electrical signals to the brain of the receiver.  Molecules of different gases affect nerve endings in the nose in a characteristic way which we call smell.

That’s still not enough for any kind of creature.  We need something to coordinate all of these systems of the body; to receive and interpret sensory inputs via the skin; the eyes into a three dimensional image in color; the ears to respond to these sensory inputs with different volumes, pitch, cadence, and emphasis; to think, to reason, to exercise our free will, to write, to communicate, to adapt to new and strange environments, to compose and play music, to invent, to create, to love.
All of this is done through nerve fibers connected to neurons within the magnificent human brain as part of the Nervous System.  The brain is the command center, connected to an immense network of over 60,000 miles of nerve paths through 250 million nerve fibers like a land line telephone network.  Faster than the most powerful supercomputer in many ways, the brain regulates all of the body’s vital functions.  The human brain itself has about 86 billion neurons and 85 billion smaller "nonneuronal" (neuroglial) cells in the human male brain.   
        The greatest unknown frontier in the universe is the human brain.  This three pound supercomputer can store information equivalent to 250 million books.  Even with miniaturization, a huge computer would be necessary.  If one would absorb one byte of information every second 24/7, it would require something like three centuries to fill up the human brain.  Yes, retrieval is often a problem.  When the great genius, Albert Einstein died, they dissected his brain and discovered that he never used most of it.  For more detail go to or or

         The computer is actually extremely stupid, a dumb machine.  The human mind invented it and must program in great detail each step of an operation, line by line.  It can only do what the human mind tells it to do and how, spelling out each step in great detail.  Miss even a comma in the program and the computer responds…….”syntax error” because it doesn’t know what to do.  It cannot create unless told how.  True, once the computer knows what to do, it’s a fabulous tool, faster than any human, but can never replace the human brain.  


          The basic building block of it all is the cell, so intricate and complex, so ingenious, different for each system of the body, so small that a microscope is needed to explore its inner parts. According to one estimate, the human body has 3.72 x 1013 or 37 trillion cells.  On top of all that, the body can repair itself by constructing new cells and eliminating the dead ones.  The human body even manufactures its own blood cells.

        We’re still not complete!  At the moment of conception God gave each one of us a soul. The integration of body and soul makes us immortal human beings, created according to the image and likeness of God…… magnificent that our loving, merciful, almighty, awesome Son of God humbly stooped down to became one of us to teach us how to live and save us from our sins.  THAT’S WHAT CHRISTMAS IS ALL ABOUT!  After the fall of man and the loss of paradise, humanity had to wait 4000 years for the Redeemer and now we can receive Him even daily into our hearts in the Holy Eucharist.  After death we, our souls, continue to live.  All that gives every person, rich or poor, educated or illiterate, tremendous dignity.

At the Last Judgment, our souls will be reunited with our bodies restored to youthful vigor that for eternity will never get sick, break down, or wear out.  We’ll all be together again with our deceased loved ones …….free of crippling handicaps, diseases, bad habits, addictions, or emotional and spiritual wounds.  Our eternal state of well-being, ecstasy, or high (for lack of a better way to describe it) will be being with God. All we know is that no eyes have seen or ears has heard what God has in store for those who love Him…….beyond our imaginations.  MAKE SURE THAT YOU GET THERE!!!!
        For the here and now that’s not all!  God allows one man and one woman to become one in a loving mutual self-giving relationship consecrated by marriage and to participate in the creation of another human being created for eternity as the product of that deep love.  Let us not abuse this sacred privilege!  That’s where God utilizes the Reproductive System.  

        A computer programmer would need thousands of lines of code to program a lifeless robot which can only do simple functions.  Infinitely more complex is the magnificent you.  The entire program for creating a human being, equivalent to millions of lines of code, is in the DNA molecule and its hundreds of genes after the union of one tiny ovum and one much tinier sperm. 

By the fifth week of pregnancy the baby’s heart is beating.  By the 11th week all of the major organs are formed, by no means a simple blob of tissue.  By 40 weeks the beautiful baby is fully formed and ready to make his/her grand entrance into our world  We are ingeniously and wondrously made by a great engineer, the master designer, the master programmer, an awesome God according to His image and likeness. 

Yet we destroy His ingeniously marvelous creative work in forms of murder, including abortion, a blatant and very serious if not vicious offense against our creator.  Does the mother and her abortionist really know and understand what they are doing?  May our awesome God have mercy on them! 

How can anyone say that great masterpiece came by random chance?  Let us go to the exhibition with a deep respect for each person who once occupied each human body and glorify God.
        Every organ of the body is ingeniously and wondrously made……so complex that we have doctors who devote their lives specializing in and learning about a single body system or only one or two organs.  They are all beautifully compacted in limited space.  Take the human eye for example…….its physics, chemistry, and biology in the refraction of light through the lens, the differentiation of colors, the adaptation to different amounts of light, seeing in three dimensions, etc.  A good ophthalmologist has to recognize an ingenious design in the eyes alone.  It would take a lot of mental gymnastics to rationalize all of that to millions of years of random selection with no designer or guiding hand.  According to the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, left alone with no guiding hand nature tends to disorder not order. 
        After I first saw Body Worlds as one with an engineering background at the famous Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, all I could think was “design, design, design!”  I left awe-struck, thinking:  “How can anybody say that the human body, so magnificent, came by random chance out of a collection of chemical substances?”  Even the great genius, Albert Einstein recognized a great designer, albeit not a personal one.  Evolution can be compatible with Church teaching if and only if the hand of the great designer is recognized.  Go to “Bodies Revealed” again at the Bossard Library, but with a spiritual perspective.  You’ll come out of there praising God and giving Him glory!
You can see a permanent exhibit of Body Worlds and many other fascinating exhibits at Discovery Times Square; 226 West 44th St. between 7th & 8th Avenues off of Times Square when visiting New York City (  For more information about future exhibitions of “Bodies Revealed”, go to


         For healthy living the secular Body Worlds recommends 1) Exercise; 2) Prayer and Meditation; 3) Proper Food in moderate amounts (80% full) low in meat; 4) Purposeful Life; 5) Use Your Talents; 6) Exercise your Brain; 7) Life Long Learning; 8) Be active; 9) Feel Loved and important in sharing your wisdom.

        Although implied above, I would add to get out of yourself and give of yourself with humility in LOVE…….first a close relationship with God and then serving Him by serving neighbor in whom God is present.  Use your talents for others even if it is a paid  job.  That will lead to a fulfilling and satisfying job.  Success in serving others leads to personal success.

      Body Works adds: “To know how to grow old is the masterwork of wisdom and one of the most difficult chapters in the great art of living.----  Henri Armiel (1821 – 1881), Swiss philosopher, poet, and critic.  An ager is sugar which attaches on to proteins.  Over the age of 30, the body needs 8% less energy every ten years.   

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