He could do nothing but stare at the paper. Then he re-checked it and checked it again. He was trembling. I mean really shaking. The way you dreamed of something really good happening and then it does, and it never feels real.
He had woken with the numbers in his head – not that he remembered going to sleep with a problem that needed solving. They were just there in the morning like a mathematical hard-on.
He’d need to talk to one of the guys up at the library, they’d know if he had just dreamed up some nonsense or if these numbers – he wanted to call them the Greenock Sequence after the place he had been born – were the real thing.
Try as he might, he couldn’t find fault with any of it. But the most important thing was what the sequence meant, to him, to everyone, to the world.
He’d only been trying to solve one of the oldest mathematical quandaries when he’d tripped over this sequence. Perhaps it was meant, the next stage in evolution, the next stage in man’s development. Hey, he was getting a bit ahead of himself. Time to stop shaking, calm down and take stock of what he thought he had on this piece of paper.
If he was correct (and he was starting to think that he was), then the Greenock Sequence proved without a shadow of doubt that God had to exist to make the universe work. It explained much about dark energy and dark matter, it explained the whole show. It explained this thing called life and he’d accidentally found it while looking for something else.
What do you do with something as explosive as these numbers? God existed, there was no doubt about that, so what next?
Had he been chosen? What if he was wrong and he was so desperate to be known for something that he was getting it all wrong? He re-wrote the numbers and the sequence. There wasn’t a doubt, the sequence was correct – God Existed.
Perhaps it would stop wars, stop people doubting. He scored through the word ‘Greenock’ and put in the word ‘God’ – seemed fitting somehow. I mean it was his/her numbers after all. ‘The God Sequence’.
He decided to sleep on it one more night and then he’d take the numbers to someone. The funny thing was, he prayed that night. Since there wasn’t any doubt about the existence, why not have a chat with the deity? For the first time in years he got down on his knees.
“I just wanted to say thanks for this. I mean, thank you from the bottom of my heart. I just wanted to know what I should do next. Amen.”
He felt that had said it all and went to sleep with a lighter heart.
In the morning, which was a glorious one, he had breakfast, got dressed in his best suit and headed off to the local church. He smiled and thought, God knows how to put on a morning. He whistled all the way to the car.
He stopped the car outside the nearest church, got out and knocked the door. A foreign looking woman told him that the Holy Father was out back.The priest was out in his garden tending to his roses and as he stood there watching the man of God, he didn’t know whether to shout, hug the man or just cough to let the priest know he was there. He chose the latter.
“Oh there you are, would you like a cup of tea?” Said the elderly priest, who then handed some of his cuttings to him.
“Throw them on the fire, there’s a good man. Now is it a death or a birth? Lovely day for either,” laughed the old man.
He cleared his throat then said. “It’s about God. I can prove he exists.”
“Well would you credit that now,” said the priest, and he thought the priest was referring to his revelation, but the old man was looking at the roots of his roses and noticing he had a rot problem.
“Sorry what did you say?”
“I said, I can prove that God exists.”
“Of course He exists, so why would you want to prove something that’s staring you right in the face. Never heard such daft talk.”
“You don’t understand, I can actually prove with a sequence of numbers that God needs to exist to make the universe work.”
The priest was getting a little red in the face. “I don’t mean to be unkind, but aren’t you just stating the bleeding obvious?”
“No, I’m proving to you that God exists.”
“Why would I need proof?” Asked the old man. “After all, I talk to the Big Man, every day. Are you saying, I’m some sort of eejit?
Because if you are, you can leave my garden right this minute and good day to you young man.”
“What I’m saying is that I can help the non-believers, the atheists, the agnostics to see that there is a deity.”
The old man just smiled. “Don’t you see? If we could prove that God exists there would be no need for faith, and if there was no need for faith, there would be no need for the Church. And if there was no need for the Church, I would be out of a job. So be very careful with what you’ve got there. It could harm a lot of people.”
The old man looked at him and said: “Have you got the proof with you?”
He nodded and took the paper from his pocket.
“Am I the only one you’ve shown it to?”
Again, he nodded.
“Let me see it, this blasted thing.”
He handed the paper to the priest who tut-ted and said things like ‘would you look at that now’.
The old priest lifted his eyes, looked at him, and then the priest smiled, throwing the paper on to the garden fire.
“Trust me, you’d better off forgetting all about this nonsense. The world will be a better place with doubt as its driving force.”
He knew he could re-create the numbers again, that wasn’t a problem. He just hadn’t been ready for the way the priest had re-acted. Surely he wasn’t typical of the church?
He said a subdued goodbye and as he walked out of the garden, he decided he’d contact the national newspapers and see what they would do with the information. I mean, what trouble could it cause?
bobby stevenson 2018