Dr. Iiya Prigogine was a chemist back in the 1970 who won a Nobel Prize for something that has been termed as "intelligent optimism".
TIME, STRUCTURE AND FLUCTUATIONS
The problem of time in physics and chemistry is closely related to the formulation
of the second law of thermodynamics. Therefore another possible title
of this lecture could have been: “the macroscopic and microscopic aspects of
the second law of thermodynamics”.
The ideas based around Newton's ideas/laws of entropy seem to take issue with certain observations in nature.
The second law of thermodynamics being active in what we observe with in the realm of our five senses, that is the idea of entropy in nature...you,
yourself being a part of nature, so, in a very real sense, the entropy you observe in your own world, which is uniquely through your own mind, this
tendency of any organized system to eventually breakdown has been said to be the very catalyst of new order.
You do not need to read and understand Dr. Prigogine's wonderful, informative lecture on entropy to come to terms with his ideas as they are
The Buddha says everything passes. And all things are new.
James, the brother of Jesus commented that all flesh is like the grasses in the field, here today...gone tomorrow.
So we can safely say that entropy takes place, and has been observed as Newton observed the laws of entropy.
Lets look at a practical application of entropy.
Which is easier to accomplish with style.
A. Walk through a crowded mall/amusement park with two children in tow.
B. Walk through a crowded mall/amusement park with twenty children in tow.
If you picked case A you are correct as case B is far more entropic.
Ok..breath in and out.
You should have a taste of entropic values without doing all the math.
Yet if we decided to look at this in a very limited math viewpoint you would say that the entropic value of case B with the twenty children in tow is
exponentially greater then case A with two children in tow.
Do you see?
Now lets pretend that we are doing a grand experiment with Newton. Lets say we wanted to find the tipping point.
That is we need to see, given a certain time value as well as a increasing value in the number of kids you could safely take through a amusement
park/shopping mall and come out the other side with everyone in tow...we need to see the tipping point, the point of flame, the point of complete
entropy...the point of complete breakdown.
Do you follow?
At what point would you simply NOT be able to bring the kids safely, all together, to the end of the shopping mall/amusement park.
At which point would it simply melt down into a chaotic entropic out of control mess?
OR would it?
Lets try to bring this down to practical living. At what point does a civilization collapse. At which point does it become so entropic that the
present form of a organization completely breakdown.
This idea can be applied to many aspects of our present Western civilization.
As a Sargent at which point do your grunts become entropic. After the car bomb. Back at base. Back at home where "it is considered" safe.
As a football coach how can you force entropy upon the opposing team and maintain entropy within your team.
So this can be applied at a macro as well as a micro level.
So Dr. Prigogine takes these ideas and shows us that any organized system exists within the boundaries of entropy and neg-entropy. That is between
chaos and information.
How is that?
Lets get on with our little experiment with Newton and examine how we can get more kids through the shopping mall/amusement park.
How can we effect entropy...to be not so quickly entropic.
OF COURSE....we give the kids rules...information.
Two kids...simple rule...stay with me kids...each of you take my hand.
Twenty kids...each kid take each others hands..lets go through the shopping mall.
So our information created tension..positive tension and we can navigate with more grace then just trying to take twenty kids through the amusement
park/shopping mall willynilly.
Simple..offer rules.. information...negates some entropy.
But at which point do the hand holding rules begin to break down.
TEACHER..his HANDS are dirty..says the twentieth kid in the line as she spots that toy she wants...and we now have another entropic value in the
TEACHER...I need to go to the bathroom..so another entropic value..and the list of entropic values coming into our neat little "hold each others
hands rules thingy" and it begins to breakdown.
So very simple right.
Now for the good news.
I will keep it simple and to the point.
Dr. Prigogine shows that as a system grows more complex it becomes increasingly unstable.
Stacking four cards is far more stable then stacking 52...even more so in a natural chaotic/entropic environment such as the environment we all live
Two kids are easier then two hundred.
Yet this natural, organic, God given entropic law which pushes us toward instability is not always negative.
As we hit the breaking point and become entropic Dr. Prigogine shows us the evolutionary value of instability in his idea of "dissipative
Dissipative structure is what appears to be chaos becomes a new order.
In alchemy what seems to be a chaotic mixture of chemicals becomes beautiful crystals.
Dissipative structure...evolving entropic structure organically takes on new order rather then complete destruction.
True Free Masonary.
In fact without dissipative structure we humans would not be able to evolve. We would be stuck.
A dissipative structure, such as what we face now as a society, is highly complex and therefore highly unstable.
A modern example would be the Soviet Union. It caught everybody by surprise yet the dissipative structure turned into a catalyst for freedom.
Germany was united peacefully. Poland had a velvet revolution. We somehow muddled the dissipative structure into a new paradigm for the former
Soviet Block nations and NEW structure took place.
Of course nothing is perfect but the bottom line is the world gained more wealth the illth.
No nukes went off...just rock concerts. JFK smiled. lol
So a dissipative structure is highly unstable, the more complex it is, the less stable.
All dissipative structures are teetering perpetually upon self destruction and re-organization.
The more complex the structure, the more likely it is to reform on a higher level of information or coherence.
Social evolution with Newton and Prigogine. lol
It sounds base but it really is not. Think of the complex chemistry needed to produce simple crystals.
The entropic state of a mixture of chemicals in the earth produces beautiful precious stones. Inorganic chem.
So back to the point.
The point is our society seems to be entering into a climate of change.
And believe it or not we all...or most humans have the same goal in mind.
Survival and wealth.
Yes it is true.
And Dr. Prigogine proved that more complex structures are mathematically more likely to dissipate into higher coherence then into self destruction.
This is why he is a Nobel Prize winner.
A Utopian viewpoint is more likely to evolve then a Dystopian viewpoint according to Dr. Prigogine in our adaptation of his idea.
Furthermore it takes about 60 years for many seeds of discovery to bear full fruition.
Have hope...video killed the radio star but hey we all have notebook pcs out of the deal. lol
Prigogine is the mathematical viewpoint of McLuhan's ideas that what many view as breakdown are actually omens of breakthrough.
The famous futurist Issac Asimov observed the 60 year cycle in his book Genetic Code.
Dr. Isaac Asimov notes1 in his Genetic Code that there seems
to be a 60-year cycle between the first understanding of a new
scientific principle and the transformation of the world by that
For instance, Oersted discovered electromagnetic equivalence—
the fact that electricity can be converted to magnetism,
and magnetism to electricity—in 1820. Sixty years later, in 1880,
electrical generators were in wide use and the Industrial Revolution
had peaked; the telegraph and telephone were already
invented, and our age of Mass Communication was dawning.
Similarly, in 1883, Thomas Edison first noted the so-called
"Edison effect"—the key to electronic, as distinct from electrical,
engineering. 60 years later, in 1943, electronic technology
was appearing everywhere; its primitive form in the entertainment
sphere, radio, had enjoyed a 20-year triumph and was about
to be phased out by television.
In 1896, Becquerel noted the radioactivity of uranium. Sixty
years later, two cities had been destroyed by atomic bombs and
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nuclear plants were beginning to be built. (This was a contribution
to illth, not wealth.)
In 1903, the Wright Brothers got their monoplane off the
ground for a few minutes. Sixty years later, in 1963, jetliners
carrying over 100 passengers were normal.
Assuming, gambling, guesstimating that this 60-year cycle is
normal, we can predict:
Shannon and Weiner created the mathematical foundations of
cybernetics in 1948. Sixty years later, in 2008, cybernetization of
the world, as complete as the electrification of the 19th Century,
will have jumped us to a new energy-level, a new social reality,
as Toffler predicts.
Hoffman discovered '___' and the chemical control of consciousness
in 1943. Sixty years later, in 2003, every alteration in
consciousness imaginable will be possible by ingesting the
McKay had the first success in expanding life-span of laboratory
rats in 1938. Sixty years later, in 1998, longevity pills may
be routinely available in all drugstores.
DNA was identified in 1944. Sixty years later, in 2004, every
type of genetic engineering should be as routine as electronic