Why So Complicated?

greenplanet

Try, fail and try again. Trial and error is the basis of evolution. But is the concept limited to biological workings? I want to divulge my own perspective on evolution and its siblings, who as a family relentlessly brings the world into states of greater complexity.

To do this, I reuse the term evolution and let this new evolution have two characteristics

  1. For each version of evolution, there is a group of subjects that manifest and disappear (live and die).
  2. Transcending those lives, is a concept which is made more complex by this process.

The eternal evolution

Take stars, for instance. Brown dwarves live long lives, blue giants short lives. They all explode eventually and spread dense matter that ends up in other solar systems. That is their interaction. The concept that evolves, is the distribution of elements. Our solar system is of the third generation, which means the elements we are made out of, have been involved with two stars before. Otherwise, there’d only be hydrogen and helium. This evolution of matter made life possible.

On our own planet, then, you eventually got the biological evolution, the prime example. It started out as evolution of structures: inevitably, only the stable ones remained. Then, when life was truly starting to form, producing bodies and movement, competition took over. The changes that evolution made on its subjects, varied greatly as the complexity rose. At first, you would see genes multiplying, forming two body parts where there used to be one. In time, the genetic “programming language” was extended, and changes could happen in more ways. More interestingly, they could surface as preferences, desires, feelings, things that were previously unknown and irrelevant for early evolution. Continue reading »

Here and There

DSC05408_wpapAt times, I fear for my existence. In several situations, my judgment has been guided by the fear of losing what I truly am. Such a threat, real or imaginary, can approach me from many borders, and each of them has its own defender in the court of my judgment. In conversation with the other parties of the court — the selfless and the neutral — they make up the actions and choices I am able to make. I want to talk about one of these borders and its defender. It is the story of one of the pieces of me, its nature and its threatened existence.

Only the present exists.” Believing it is one of the best ways to move on after a painful memory. It is true, but from a certain perspective. All the truths about life cannot be seen in a single perspective. The full picture is arranged like in a kaleidoscope. That’s because we are arranged like kaleidoscopes. So I’m not saying you ought to pick out the pieces you like best and stitch them together into a patchwork of the world you’d like to see. No truths change, but some are true only to parts of you.

There may be universal truths as well, I suppose, but they don’t tell us what we need to live. Perhaps we’re all based on the principles of science, both those we have and those haven’t figured out yet. I don’t think so, but even if we are, we are simultaneously unable to process those truths into something with the insight and humanity of simple common sense. And even in the most concrete science, complex phenomenons need their own explanations different from the basics. Everything has its scope. That is why the apparent ambiguity of truths about life never troubles me. We are glued together by so many different complex workings, their scopes will not overlap, and they cannot understand eachother. But we can understand all of them and act on each of them where it is valid.

So, only the present exists, but here’s another turn of the kaleidoscope that makes the next point clearer. This turn resonates deeply with other actors in the great scheme of my being, and it says: “only through the past do we exist.

470147_kaleidoscope_1

The point is about growth. I came into this world with some parts and a machinery ready. Then I grew and became what I am through interacting with my surroundings. I involved myself, dealt myself out; I spread my roots, and they brought back nutrition. On that, I grew, reshaped, created myself. I still do.

Inevitably, I became what I fostered on. I didn’t just take and exploit wherever I went; where my roots are, I am. This is how nature designed me on many levels. In the vast principles of nature, giving is taking, living is dying, and growing is shrinking. We are allotted no more than what is, and so is everyone else, before, during and after us.

I am what I am. But not all I’ve fostered on, is physically present. My roots go further than this world, because this world wasn’t the only one I grew in. Effectively, I’m not entirely of this world. My roots cannot be denied. If it wasn’t for the vitality and life that definitely courses through me, some parts of me would be just as real as the stories they were created in. This has provided me with a unique insider perspective.

Aren’t stories real as well? Their conflict with our science is irrelevant, for the value of a story lies in the emotions it brings. All that stories are, all the wonder we envisage through them, is concieved right here, in ourselves. So perhaps the only difference between wondrous stories and real life, is that real life happens to have chosen a seemingly boring configuration. We’re able to be so much else, we can life and feel in so many other ways. Without the stories, I might not have been able to know that. Knowing the stories, having the imagination, I life with the frustration of what is and what isn’t real. My own extended existence, incompatible with the confines of our concrete cave.

I despair because I’m a dreamer trapped among scientists and businessmen. But in moments of clarity, when I can break free, I realize that stories have seldom been so prominent, so numerous. I’m definitely not the only one existing around here. Many of us know what we are deep inside, and how much more that is than what we have been able to be in real life. That is the very reason we have stories in the first place.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9juntKKY0kY

I will always have one foot in other worlds. It’s what makes me, me. These worlds, and the past, is one and the same. For all the stories I have grown in, I found in the past, and the past is also but an imagination, now that it has gone. It might not exist physically any longer, but mentally, the past is a very real place, where we find many of the things that define us. Whatever we are.

The Zealotry of Emotions

DSC02243Having seen the lack of magic in science, I round up my investigation by looking at the tragic application of science where it should have no power: humanity. Scientism appears as a minimum, a reduced world that nobody can dispute. But how can you live your life believing that you hardly even exist?

(Follow-up to The Infancy of Science.)

Some people chase extraordinary meaning in the world around them, just to end up lost and come back disappointed. Meanwhile, those who consider themselves down-to-earth sit contently and preach about the lack of inherent value in the world. We simply need to acknowledge this lack, to stop looking and be happy with what is, and all will be better.

So what is? Who can tell us; what instance has the authority to set the standards for what we can allow ourselves to believe in? Well, if we have been let down by spirituality and religion, is seems only fit to turn to science as the supreme authority of answer-providing. I don’t know about you, but I have a problem with this solution. A big problem.

When running from a liar, is it more fitting to move in with a psychopath?

Continue reading »

The Infancy of Science

47279_89791

In this entry and the next, I look at the relationship between science, magic… and what we think they are. First, I reveal the ignorance of science as it does not care about first-hand knowledge and emotional experience, but only theory and description. Are not our very emotions a result of these processes which we treat with such logical indifference?

Different humans can have very different perspectives on things. In many conflicts, it’s never enough to just point out the facts and agree upon them. That’s not what those conflicts are about, and yet some people just won’t understand that. Why?

Well… fact, or information, is power. This has — naturally — given much power to information. And what is information all about? I’ll tell you. It’s about 0 and 1. Black and white. North and south. Jedi and Sith. All information is either valid or invalid. Information, the great power of our time, doesn’t care about anything else.

Continue reading »

Beyond the Origin: An Earthy Perspective

The modern opinion is cynical towards the world, expecting to recieve no compassion or meaning — because after all, the universe is a faceless machine, its gears the cold logic of physics and probability. I battle this opinion under its own terms, showing that emotions like love cannot merely be explained by their apparent purposes, but must have been present since the conception of this world.

Humanity. We live and we persist because it is inevitable. In this world of change and peril, only that which persists, lives.

Our highly developed consciousness, our imagination, made us persist. Our hope in better days, in great wonder, made us persist. Because of them, we still exist to this day.

And because they made us persist, these parts have persisted in us. That is the only reason we have them. If the world had challenged us in different ways, we would have developed different abilities. In another world, we might be unable to learn to swim, climb trees… or feel happy.

Continue reading »