Archive for June, 2011

33 – We have the Power to transform the energy we consume into Power …

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

It is self-evident that we – the human species – have evolved within a favorable environment into the most dominant species on Earth.

It is self-evident that as individuals and as a species, we are totally dependent on the environment for the energy sources we need to exist and fuel our development. Yet we are overwhelming this same environment with our exponential growth and levels of consumption.

It is self-evident that an economic culture dominated by the profiteering of corporations leads us into constant conflict, divisiveness, injustice, inequality, destruction, pollution, greed, and horrendous levels of poverty and ignorance. And although devoid of humanitarian or environmental concerns yet blessed by economists, politicians and religious leaders, global corporations are making the decisions critical for the survival of Humanity.

This is the reason why educational systems have prostituted themselves into promoting a destructive economic system, while knowledge about the enormous power each one of us has to affect change is obliterated. This is the reason why most of Humanity is unable to conceptualize the empirical fact that all the cells engendered by the fusion of the ovum and the sperm, inherit the primal instincts  to give us power to function as a dynamic and cohesive unit, to find the best way to adapt and survive, to give direction to our lives; or the fact that in order to have a continuous form of existence, we are innately born with the knowledge to balance our intake and release of energy sources so we can craft the progressive sequence of states of equilibrium that give us relative stability; or the fact that although we are totally dependent on the consumption of energy sources for our survival, we possess the inherent capacity to transform that energy into the power of motion, action, ideas, transformation.

So, no matter how the corporate media conceals self-evident truths with banality and misinformation; no matter how educational systems prostitute themselves to promote an unsustainable economic system; no matter how global corporations plunder the environment and try to tyrannize the human spirit, sooner or later we’ll induce the emergence of a new world order where we come to accept as common knowledge the obvious fact that we exist only because we live within a Universe that gives us substance and power to affect not only our own development, but the development of the world in which we exist.

“And what would the world be like, when you venture out? Quite unlike the way it looks now”. Rimbaud

Share the knowledge.

Revised March 2018

Note: New posts are usually published on the 1st and 15th of the month. To subscribe to the Blog, click on the RSS feeder (orange icon) on the left column of the Home page, down below the Archives.

32 – On Dissipative Structures (Part I) …

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011

We do not think about our bodies, the human body, as a synthesizer of energy, but this is fundamentally what we are. We consume different forms of energy from our environment through our nose, mouth, skin, eyes, then synthesize and release this energy into motion, action, emotion, reproduction, vision, ideas, waste.

In 1977, the Belgian Physicist and Chemist Ilya Prigogine was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for a theory he called Dissipative Structures (from the Latin dissipatus: to scatter) that explains how, in a profoundly symbiotic relationship with environments, open systems* … like you, and me, and molecules, and cells, and planets, and galaxies … fuel their development through a constant yet balanced intake and release of energy sources. The theory also explains how this process can be the catalyst for transformation into higher levels of complexity as systems adapt to changing environments.

Dissipative Structures are open systems that unfold naturally into relatively pre-determined designs … a seed of an oak tree into an oak tree, a human baby into an adult human being, a cloud of interstellar dust into a solar system, a congregation of stars into a galaxy, billions of human beings into the species we call Humanity.

As the open system develops, self-organizes, stabilizes, and attains structural and functional continuity, it innately learns to manipulate its intake and release of energy sources into relative states of equilibrium. But disturbances in its equilibrium inevitably result as environments and resources change and fluctuate. If the disturbance is minor, the system can dampen it and preserve its structural integrity. But if the disturbance reaches a critical size, a part, or the entire system is disturbed; the system is shaken up and novel interactions are introduced to cope with the disturbance. The old set of connections and the elements of old patterns of organization interact with each other in novel ways to adapt to the new environmental demands. If the system is successful in re-organizing, it is then transformed either into a more complex or a simpler structure with new energy demands, which then may make it more vulnerable to environmental fluctuations. But on the other hand, if the system fails to re-organize, it will begin to disintegrate and ultimately dissipate back into the environment from which it initially came from.

Humankind is facing such disturbance: As an open system, the species has reached a critical point where our numbers and levels of energy consumption are not only overwhelming resources but altering the chemical equilibrium of the environment in which our lives depend. If we are unable to re-organize into a new order in which we are in equilibrium with the environment, we might end up joining the list of extinct species.

The solution is clear: Worldwide acknowledgment and acceptance of responsibility for the damaging impact on the relative stability of the environment of our exponential growth and rapacious consumption.

But most of our leadership … political, economic, religious … with no vision for the future of Humankind other than unlimited growth and satiation of their selfish interests, are oblivious to the impending environmental disturbances being created by the unsustainable and destructive economic system they are bent on perpetuating.

It is up to us to spread the knowledge: Humankind is out of equilibrium. We are synthesizers of energy, and the levels of energy we consume and release through our exponential growth are disturbing the chemical balance of the environment that gives us life. We can not continue to exist as we have in the past without the environment we are plundering.

*Open systems come into existence through primal evolutionary processes and interact freely with environments, as opposed to ‘closed systems’ which are generally man-made to fit specific expectations.

Reviewed March 2018

Note: New posts are usually published on the 1st and 15th of the month. To subscribe to the Blog, click on the RSS feeder (orange icon) on the left column of the Home page, down below the Archives.