The Service of Dissipation : LUSENET : Daily Tales : One Thread

Hi there;

I'm almost done with a busy day. It's just after 7:30 pm. I took a bit of a writing break - you give me a good excuse to do so. In fact, you make me a very naughty girl, and you're getting to see the Cosmic Shirker inside of me that dodges out to the cafe for a bit of java and philosophy every chance I get.

I look forward to that time when you venture into a bit of the same - I think it was back in December that you thought you might write a bit to me about one of your days sometime. They do fly by, don't they?


This missive is written in the very pre-dawn of my understanding of this Complexity thing, fresh and fast on the heels of my awareness (finally!) that it has a specific lexicon, a precise language that I strongly need.

I'm just now embarking on a very unexpected brief(?) tangent into formal Complexity through a school I found in a warehouse near my store - The school, newly begun by Alder Stone Fuller, offers three main 8-week classes: an Introduction, Complexity Biology and Complexity Mathematics (I'm addressing some gaps in my Discrete Math brain cells to nudge them out of IRS/Grocer mode).

I want these language tools to take my arts to the next appropriate level. I think that my music and my story will be dramatically affected by a more solid grounding in the formal Complexity Theory. I'm ready to get the terminology right, since Gaia Theory is suffering some mighty distortion at the hands of we Inspireds, and I seem to have planned to write a whole tome based on my misapplied inspiration. I don't want to do the New Edge any more disservice than I already have. I should be finished with the classes by the end of July.

You told me that side road would find me. It did. It wasn't really the one I had at the rim of my mind, but it seems to be the one I'm on.

>> Portland I understood (finally, and once again) how war is a dissipative >> structure, and dance is a dissipative structure, and love is a dissipative >> structure. >

On 4/15/2002 9:59AM, John Perry Barlow wrote:

> I wonder. I tend to think that love is anti-entropic, since it lies > at the heart of life,

Yes, love must be exactly anti-entropic, its order an energy sink for our acts of generation.

> and life is marvelously capable of > concentrating little zones of increased order and energy. Dance may > be dissipative but it serves love and life so succinctly... >

Yes! The service factor in dissipation is entirely the point.

(If you'll permit me to speak from a place of brashly enthusiastic assertion, emboldened primarily by ignorance of all but tiny shreds of Classical Thermodynamics (CT) and wisps of Complexity, but foolish enough to proceed as if I *know*.)

This particular dissipation I speak of is one of energy *into* structure. In CT, increased energy leads to an increase in disorder (entropy). Nodes of pattern/order are eventual steps along the energy gradient into which the increased energy dissipates. (The energy of what? heat in the classical model; oomph for the rest of us? soft kisses for you and me? Good question...)

The accumulation of increasing energy in a system is periodically transformed (and *not* along a bell curve) into structures. The ordering of each structure (an intent to love - the manifestation of love, perhaps?) and the resonance throughout the ordered structure (the kindling of love, the burning in love, the endurance of love, the faith in love) *is* the dissipation, the Dissipative Structure.

Sustained order can eventually, with grace and other still unknown inputs, become an emergent property of the structure, the auto-poiesis, the self-speaking self-organizing process that seems to define the endurance of a thing - a process so poorly understood, but named anyway, with barely the name to hold it...

Energy is dissipated into order by the work of ordering, of making order.

These little zones that you speak of - these moments that you and I sometimes inhabit, for example; the stuff we share that we can call "ours" - are lovely resonant nodes that have popped into view/being suddenly, just as dissipative structures are wont to do.

You and I were nicely plodding along for a number of years on our linear low-slope curve of very occasional e-mails and then, suddenly, Novelty struck. A vortex of unpredicted efforts from numerous autonomous parties culminated in a moment of physical proximity for us.

Sensory input was added - That Proximity Effect Thing - Energy. The look of me. The look of you. We shared cells. Breath. Lips. Your hand, your sound touched me. My hand, my sound touched you. Energy increased.

And then what I believe is called a "bifurcation" took place. A pattern, an order, emerged. I call it "love" (but a very new thing from what I've previously known as such). Post-bifurcation, nothing was the same. And some things were radically different. We could have just called it a spike on an otherwise predictable curve. We could have gone our own ways and ignored the data, calling it an anomaly and throwing it out in the interest of the Norm.

But we don't work well that way, do we?


Along the Gradient of increasing energy, the work of discerning the ranges in which orders appear, and then learning to sustain those ranges as desired, is some of what knowledge must be. Sustaining structures that serve growing systems of order - especially living ones - with an aesthetic sensitivity is some of what I think the art of good work - knowledge applied well, with style - must be.

But moving *through* current structures by increasing the energetic input - and risking the loss of order - taking the risk of falling out of, or beyond, the known order for the express purpose of participating in more complex (implicate?) orders, or to simply sustain the ordered progression of the energy increase itself (for somewhere it must just go up) - well, I think that is some of what faith must be.

The chain of being is a constant unfolding of these sweet vocabularies of order's self-referencing sequence. This Chain of Being, and of Being In love, is one poetry of that immense vocabulary. And I do so love being in love...

...Thus I play with this language while striving to learn and use it well, for Alder promised me rigor since I warned him about the liberties I tend to take with concepts that dance too close to me.

> I wanted to call you last night, but I was ass-deep in > administratrivie all evening. When I looked up from the paper pile, > it was 2:30 am. Too late to call. In any case, I'm sorry for my > recent silence.

You know, I'm not doing the Poor Me thing too much. I accept it. Walt's the same way. Most of the fellows I've cared for are. We're all busy, but it's still sad that this business of busyness - non-trivial, vital, necessary, required - keeps us from the love and nurture of an Other who would lovingly sustain us, help us, share the loads and take advantage of the little moments between the tasks that hugs and eyes and lips were made for. I don't know how to find that place from here. It's hard to think I may have passed those times, but now I often think I have, and so I'm glad for the company of my heart and my mind. Without my self I sure would feel mighty alone.

>I've been dealing with a lot of difficult stuff, like > having my middle daughter kicked out of school and trying to find her > another one.

She doesn't like her school, eh? I remember *that* feeling. I was informally emancipated when I was 15 and had a pretty sketchy educational odyssey that turned out all right in the end. At least, I like to think so. The second child often needs a LOT of both support and space to individuate, and by that I mean the help of being in a structure that celebrates and magnifies uniqueness, creating a springboard very different from the family ground.

I was a first child who became a second child. That was interesting.

There are some very wonderful schools throughout our world. Is Anna looking for one, too, or is that your job? What does she want to do?

> >> >> But, sadly, you and I ain't gonna play next week. >

> Rats.

Rats back. If I'd known you were thinking about it I might have tried harder to get the paperwork done. Last word I had from you on hanging out together was "Nice idea, but I don't think so." I still think you ought to practice saying what you want loudly enough so that I can hear it once in awhile. Maybe I should push more. I don't know. I just figure I'm pretty low on the list in the Barlow Meatspace Index and accept my role up here in the aether as some light creature you love but can't get too close to.

And besides, like I think I've mentioned in the past, I work to show my respect for you by assuming that you know what you want, you know what you can do, and you don't need nor deserve the disrespect of me demanding your attention.

I have a sense that others aren't quite so inclined, and that probably in your world the squeaky wheel gets the grease. But I also figure that's something for you to work on (or not - you could be fine and dandy with everything just as it is). In any event, it all sorts itself out as time wears on.

>I was so looking forward to that walk in tall timber...

Me, too. I still am. But I think you get to schedule the next one.

so, much love and kiss and touch and hum,


PLUR. Remember PLUR



-- Anonymous, April 16, 2002

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