Bare Bones Biology 309 – Not Again!

I am becoming a fan of Sterno©, the heat in a can system that I’ve been packing around in the truck ever since leaving Texas, where I used it while staying at the Annex because I am very fond of something hot or at least warm to drink in the morning and there is no electricity out there. As you know, mostly I cannot use utilities that burn anything because the fumes make me sick.

160418-ChamaSnow-asc_3959RLSs And please don’t tell me I can burn anything because it is “all natural.” In fact, nearly everything that burns IS natural, from wood to oil to gas to candles, except electricity, which actually does its burning somewhere else and thus does not usually make me sick – unless it’s heating up plastic. Of course plastic came out of the same oil well, and nearly all electric heaters are now made of plastic (how dumb is that?) and it’s getting harder and harder and harder and harder – and I’m holding on to my old metal ones as though my life depended on them. Which it might, depending on whether or not our younger generations ever decides to concern themselves with pollution.

 

It’s an interesting event, because it’s above zero degrees F, above freezing in fact (F or C) in the daytime, and I am sitting on the back porch in the swirling snow, drinking a cup of hot coffee courtesy of my little can of Sterno and my friendly neighbor the Chevron station, the only place in town that is open and doing business, because they have a backup generator.

 

I’m watching the birds that were apparently somewhat shocked by the event and are hopping about in the bare spots that I made this morning while shoveling paths through about a foot of the white stuff. So far I see Gray-Headed Juncos, a dove, Stellar’s Jays, Red Shafted Flickers, Magpies, a woodpecker, and the flock of Robins that apparently fly in every year just ahead of the last big storm of the season, according to something I read.

 

It’s warm in the Chevron, and a lot more interesting socially than any local tavern I have known. Which is irrelevant because the local tavern also has no electricity. I really did need a cup of coffee; the Chevron always has coffee, and it’s quit good since the young man is making it now. In fact they always have free coffee, and you can’t top that. The only place open within many miles, working men and travelers need to buy gas, social man-groups collect around the pumps with cups of hot coffee in their cold hands.

 

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My mistake was leaving all my matches in the canyon. I might as well have stayed in the canyon for that matter, I came up for the electricity, but here I am with no electricity, and I doubt anyone is plowing the canyon road today. So after cleaning the entire house looking for them, I decided probably someone at the Chevron© would have some matches, and sure enough they gave me one of those little Bic© lighters to light my Sterno© with.

 

The air is clean today, so I feel right good as long as I sit upwind of the canned heat.

 

Yes, you guessed it, I did it again, and that’s probably what blew out all of the electricity between here and Espanola. I plugged in my electric heater and the whole shebang went down. When I mentioned to one of the man-groups that they would probably have it all fixed by tomorrow, they rolled their eyes at me.

 

So much for independence.

 

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Bare Bones Biology 307 – Evolution

I treasure my culture-shock experiences, my efforts to understand “foreign” cultures, I cherish the wonderful people I met and the many new things they taught me that nourished and expanded my world view. I think of them every day.

 

It has been much more difficult to understand my own country, where the most important words and morés have changed their meanings – evolved of course along with the evolution of the corposystem, our new corporate political social system – so that they no longer make sense in context. “Science,” “energy,” most importantly “evolution” “honor,” “freedom,” “The American Way.”

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When I became a (reluctant) activist I discovered that the word “biologist” also has lost its former meaning. It seems that half of everyone is a biologist now. Many biologists are not scientists, specializing perhaps in what we used to call natural history or nature study, survivalists included, studying nature in situ without the scientific method. This is good, useful, it honors a Higher Power. Some are working beyond the limits of fact-based reality. Most are doing technology (making or using tools) rather than science. This can be useful if guided by a viable world view that uses good science to align our behaviors with requirements for our survival.

 

So who am I, the corposystem asked, that I claim to be a biologist? OK, the name does not change the game or my expertise. I am a geneticist who uses the scientific method to study naturally evolved biological systems.

As an amateur activist, my efforts to contribute from my expertise were most commonly thwarted by the most common question: “But what should we DO?”  So I said what we must do. Simply, we must reduce our population before (or concurrently with, our other primary goals) or we cannot accomplish our other primary goals. We have known this for centuries.

 

And I began to ask my own questions, seeking understanding, and discovered that this, our brave new world is afraid of questions, as of discussion. “What should we do?” is not a request for information. It is a kiss-off “nice” way to dominate the discussion – to win. Winning is one of the imperatives within the corposystem world view.

 

Win what?

I began to study my own culture as a failing, naturally evolved system. I learned that our corposystem ethic seems largely to be based in the mostly false meme “survival of the fittest” (which I am told Darwin never said). I studied physics, communications and information theory, and people, and concluded along the way that evolution mostly is about systems that communicate with each other using their emergent properties, and that the emergent properties of our corposystem are: growth, domination (competition), for gain (mostly money). By using the power of technology to give us anything we want.

 

So the truth, the scientific fact, the answer to the question, is so simple at the level of the science and the Biosystem that we have known it all along. We can’t have everything we want, and now we must choose and we don’t want to. And yet the answer is so complicated at the level of our corposystem, that it is only now, fifteen years later, that I even understand the question. “What should we do?” stripped of the dominance intent, translates to: “What technology or tool can we use to solve our biological problem?”

 

The answer to that question is also simple. There is only one set of technologies that can solve this problem, and those birth control technologies have been available for all of my adult lifetime. We have everything we need to solve the problem, including impressive social tools that we are instead applying to the effort of growth for profit by domination.

 

Without our exponential growth rate and the out-of-balance relationship between available food supplies and the healthy Biosystem’s ability to provide, we would not be asking what can we do. We would be doing it.

Or at least discussing the real problem.

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Bare Bones Biology 307 – I Didn’t Do That

Yesterday was not good for me. First I had two doctors’ appointments; second, they were both 100 miles away; third, I drove from my mountaintop to theirs and back, all in one day, stopping for medication on the way back, and then zonked out under my electric blanket by 6 pm. Just before midnight I woke up, went out to my little travel-trailer workshop, turned on the electric space heater, and all the lights went out in our entire subdivision.

I didn’t do that.
160320-SantaFe-asc_3694RLsDid I?

So, using battery power, I checked my emails, which consisted of about 50 political flyers, one of which I read because it did not have any fantastical, tremendous, horrendous, unbelievable, hyperflagulous words in the title.

While I do not write about politics, I do write about how systems function, and these words from Bernie Sanders could have been me – talking about naturally evolved systems that have nothing to do with politics.: “. . . the American people understand that you cannot change a corrupt political system by taking its money.”

And this is my version of essentially the same reality: “When I say that we may not succeed in implementing your mission, I am not referring to what you can do today to help other people who are caught in the system – what I mean is that what you can do today will not accomplish your long-term heart’s desire and frustration, which I believe is to move up one level of systemic organization — from helping individuals, to changing the system that creates these victims — and in fact what you do today could, unawares, enable the system’s creation of victims. “ Bernie said it better, but that’s the way I talk.

About two hours later, the lights came back on and I went out to the little workspace and turned the heater on again. Nothing bad happened, so I plugged in the DVD player to continued my study of “complex adaptive systems” of which naturally evolved systems are evidently a subset – Subset? That doesn’t make sense. How can a factual natural reality be a subset of a human conceptualization???? Ahhh, I get it. If your head is in the Biosystem world view, the naturally evolved complex adaptive systems are a subset of the Biosystem. On the contrary, if your head is in the corposystem world view, you are required to behave as though all of the natural world is a subset of human conceptualization.

Not long now, we will have to choose sides or lose the field of play.

160320-SantaFe-asc_3631RLsI did that. One day in 2006 I sat at the end of my driveway in my old white Ford pickup and realized that we cannot solve our human problems from inside our corposystem worldview that created the problems. I decided then and there, ten years ago, that I would approach my life from that time forward trying to think like a system. As though I were a system. And it has been difficult even for me, with all the background that I have in my life as a scientist and a human person, to get my human head around some of the Biosystem needs for its survival.

So it’s hard, but that is an entirely different subject that has nothing to do with the fact that we will soon have to choos. In fact, we are choosing every day — with everything we do. What do we want more – compassionate recognition of the effect our behaviors have on other people and all sentient beings? Or, like a child, do we want what we want — no matter what?

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Bare Bones Biology 306 – Butterflies

I want to explain something in 600 words that may not be possible, and that is a relationship between or among butterflies. These are not real butterflies, but a metaphor that we have been applying to different but interconnected mental constructs.

 

“At the edge of chaos emerges creativity” – emergence, an ugly sort of term that has been shortened and verbified by the corposystem in its never ending effort to make believe that humans control Life rather than the other way around. I keep talking about the corposystem world view because I believe it is the cause of our current malaise and will end in enormous suffering of humans and all other sentient beings. So today I am talking about the metaphor of butterflies that the corposystem world view uses BOTH in trying to describe the creativity at the edge of unstable natural phenomena such as weather (and climate) AND as the emergence of beauty, of Life, from the cocoon of its origins on Earth.

WorldviewAction

 

Like concepts without rationale, these metaphors flutter around our heads as we use them to support whatever we believe – rather than informing their beauty at a higher level by incorporating their source, the amazing reality of Life itself and our part in it, and what I am about to say about these metaphors, in my effort to align them with factual reality rather than with human wish-stories, what I am about to say may also lie at the edge of chaos where naturally evolved systems emerge and where they must inevitably either change, in order to conform with the Law of Life that makes Life of Earth possible –

 

or die.

 

We probably can agree that Life itself was not created by humans and the Laws of Nature that nurture Life were also not created by humans. These facts suggest that we humans (especially the corposystem, as it now contains the most overt human power) that we would all be better off if we were to align our power with the needs of Life rather than continue our historic and unsustainable battle to conquer the Earth and all that lives thereon. No matter who created it.

 

Who created it is not the point of life or death, except that our behaviors are strongly controlled by our worldview (a naturally evolved system).

 

Corposystem Cycle

 

A system that is available to our evolution. A naturally evolving system that we could be using to align ourselves with The Law of Life, but for the most part we are not.

 

I am not now talking about the “bad guys.” I have noticed that the “bad guys” most often know exactly what they are doing. Because they enjoy what they are doing. I am now talking about you and me. The “good guys.” It is time we stop sacrificing ourselves to the corposystem ethic in the belief that we are changing the corposystem ethic. We are not – we are ‘ENABLING” the addictive corposystem ethic that would have long since crashed were it not for our good intentions.

 

 

The corposystem ethic does not solve the problem, either in the hands of the bad guys or in the hands of you and me.

 

So then the question becomes not about behaviors, but about worldviews. How does the butterfly of a biologically rational, sustainable worldview emerge from the corposystem that believes it IS biologically rational, but in reality is just turning the dominance wheel one way (the “good guys”) or the other way (the “bad guys”) neither of which bows to the reality of the Law of Life?

 

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Bare Bones Biology 305 – Survival

As the processes of Life proceed through time, each in intimate relationship with its environments, change happens. Life changes over time. I think you already know this, but that is not the interesting part of the story. It is not the system itself (for example, the Human species as a system, or the power that we humans wield, or even our individual commitment) that generates the change over time inside some specified environment. Rather, the environment imposes change upon the system (for example us). And the result of this “dance among the systems” determines which systems survive. We do not need to fight for survival of our system — we only need to know what is required of us to enhance to coalition of all the naturally evolved systems – and do it.
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However, this is not usually what happens, because naturally evolved systems most often do not change course. They usually become more and more of whatever is their primary specialized attribute, until the system collapses, and some new baby system arises that fits itself neatly into a nurturing niche within Life.

 

This is because a naturally evolved system is set up to protect itself from change. Its prime directive is to perpetuate itself, and all the little bits and interacting pieces of the system do just that. For example, consider the corposystem as a model, because I have already used the giraffe so many times it becomes boring. The corposystem is set up, organized, naturally evolved to perpetuate itself by making money through growth and making growth through dominance. This is what all its bits and pieces (let’s say all the people trained in the American TV dominated educational system) are set up to do.

 

That’s different from giraffes, because it is the genome of the giraffe that is set up to grow a long neck to interact with an environment of treetop browsing. But we are not talking about genetics or giraffes, we are talking about naturally evolved systems, and the corposystem is a naturally evolved social system composed of people in their environment.

 

Because the function of any system is to use its parts to maintain itself, and because of the amazing success of behaviors – therefore it is in large part human behaviors that maintain the corposystem.   And what directs human behaviors? For the most part it is the human world view that directs human behaviors. Humans born, raised and trained within the corposystem educational system maintain the corposystem world view by their behaviors.

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Now along comes a threat to the survival of the corposystem worldview of growth by domination for gain. What is the threat?

 

Overpopulation. Physics. Energy. Growth is impossible beyond the ability of our Bios to feed us. And we cannot change physics or energy. They are what they are.

 

Still, the function of a naturally evolved system is to maintain itself, and the only way it knows how to do this is to use its imprinted (evolved, educated, inherited) worldview.

 

So we try harder and harder to grow – and more violently to dominate – until we are destroying other naturally evolved parts of the Bios — and that changes the Bios from a cornucopia of biological wealth to a dessert of thirst and hunger.

 

And what will happen if you try to have this conversation with a citizen of the corposystem?

 

The function of a biologically evolved system is to maintain ITSELF.   That does not mean to survive. It means to be what it is at any cost, and when the environment in which it can flourish changes, as we have changed it, the cost is, indeed, our survival.

 

Because that is how evolution functions. That is the process by which naturally evolved systems interact with their internal systems and environmental systems to generate viable complexity.   By killing off the parts of the system that do not contribute to the viable complexity of the system.

 

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Bare Bones Biology 304 – The Frame

All of our universe is composed of naturally evolved systems. I am a naturally evolved system; I am one unit of the human species that is also a naturally evolved system that consists of nearly 8 billion units and their environment. The corposystem (a social system) has evolved within the human species and is now our primary paradigm. The corposystem and the human species and I are all part of the naturally evolved Biosystem, which is a much more ancient and powerful naturally evolved system — but the Biosystem is not human. The Biosystem is a highly evolved natural system that consists of many “levels of organization” that all and each are naturally evolved systems.   All of this intricate naturally evolved balancing act involves interactions of many kinds among and between the systems at multiple levels.

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Evolution is not primarily about survival of the fittest, and it is not primarily about objects such as ourselves. Evolution is primarily about energy and information relationships among collaborating systems.

 

“Survival of the fittest” is a pitiful, woefully inaccurate meme that has damaged our creative response to Life as it is, and precluded our insights.

 

We humans are not at the top of that peak or any other, nor can we be. We humans exist at the level of individual organisms. We are composed of naturally evolved systems (example, the nervous system) and the systems are composed of naturally evolved cells.   If cells had not evolved, then a nervous system could not have evolved, and the various species of organisms could not have evolved. Thus the real world of naturally evolved systems is much more complex than four dimensions the physicists work with, or even the multidimensional approach to a mathematical description of the quantum world. It is very difficult to imagine. But it’s more worthwhile and less embarrassing than to use our naturally evolved brain to think in ignorant meme-imposed frames.

 

The real world consists of naturally evolved systems that interact with each other to generate more complex naturally evolved systems. The history of our Creation lies in the ability of these systems to function at all the systemic levels cooperatively so that I am alive because all my cells and organs and organ systems are alive and functioning together cooperatively to generate and maintain me; and my species, Homo sapiens maintains itself as a naturally evolved system so long as it generates (evolves) social systems that are beneficial to us all, and so long as those social systems also benefit the ecosystems of which Homo sapiens is a part.

 

What that means is:

 

1 – the naturally evolved ecosystem is the cutting edge where our species (at present our corposystem) gracefully submits to the needs of Life itself to maintain and support ALL THE LOWER LEVELS OF LIFE that are essential for the survival of ourselves and of the whole Biosystem – or not. Natural selection is the name we have given to that process of success or failure.   Either we fit our behaviors into the requirements for the maintenance of life of our environments — or humans do not survive, nor will any of the naturally evolved systems of which we are composed. This is how systems sustain themselves; if we can’t get with the program, we aren’t welcome in the game.

 

2 – if we succeed in aligning our behaviors with the ecosystem of which we are a part — so that we contribute to the welfare of that ecosystem and the entire Biosystem, then we can survive. If not – not.

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3 – Right now, Homo sapiens is dying because Homo sapiens is an unfit species that is destroying itself by overpopulating. Overpopulation events of any species normally do change the environment of that species. THAT IS HOW SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST PRIMARILY WORKS! The unfit species destroy themselves by their inability to survive within the environmental changes they themselves have generated.

 

4 – If we continue to believe we are in charge of our environment, rather than the other way around, we destroy one huge opportunity — that sublime evolutionary breakthrough, to the next higher level of reality that could lead to a sustainable human future. We cannot do this by telling the ecosystem how it should function within The Life.

 

If we choose a sustainable life style for our grandchildren, we must live within this frame (paradigm/worldview). We could do it tomorrow, if we were willing to face our problems with courage rather than anger, fear and denial — and to inform our human compassion with the wisdom of Life and Death.

 

 

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Definitions and Descriptions (we can probably improve these definitions):

 

Energy is classically defined as the “ability to do work’ using the Laws of Thermodynamics that study work and entropy. Work can be thought of as the cause of change, movement, or organization.   Entropy can be thought of as disorder or disorganization in the states of Energy and of Information.

 

Another modern description of entropy, Seth Lloyd. 2006. Programming the Universe. Alfred Knopf., page 191: “You can think of entropy as consisting of random junky bits and negentropy as consisting or ordered, useful bits.”  

 

Information was described by Claude Shannon as: “Information (theory) . . , though related to the everyday meaning of the word, should not be confused with it.”   And: The fundamental problem of communication is that of reproducing at one point either exactly or approximately a message selected at another point.” (Quoted in The Information, chapter 7, Information Theory, by James Gleick, pub. Pantheon.

 

The word communication, when applied here to naturally evolved systems refers to whatever processes may share information across whatever physical, social or functional boundary may separate the systems, for example the cell membrane, human skin, ecosystem climate zones, tribes, languages, species. These boundaries may be seen to represent the evolutionary history of the entity or organism, as for illuminated by levels of organization, an insight brilliantly proposed by Lynn Margulis in her lifetime, and the prior concept that “ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny.”

 

Naturally evolved systems are self-organized, self-perpetuating units that consist of nodes and processes. Neither the nodes (objects, for example ourselves) nor the processes (any example will do, from gravity to hydroxylation) nor the environment in which the nodes and processes function (the environment is composed of other systems), none of these is paramount, though the environment is the most powerful, and all of these levels of systems are involved in the cyclic language of Life that evolves (adapts) and perpetuates itself by collaboration with other systems as it spirals through time.

 

 

 

 

 

WildEarthMan

I am becoming terminally confused by WordPress.  As they keep changing things around and do not bother to keep me informed, I find I can do less and less with the program, after all these years.  As an interim measure to figuring how to approve this comment, I will post the comment from WildEarthMan, which I think is excellent, along with my responses.

Here are two things we clearly agree upon: We are living in an Old Story that is destroying the world, leaving us with an urgent need for a New Story, and; we are deep into population overshoot, and, since we are a biological species, Nature is going to deal with us just like she does with any other species that (temporarily) exceeds the Earth’s sustainable carrying capacity. I am sure we have other points of agreement, but from the way you present your belief system, I am uncertain where these are.

 

I am quite sure that we agree about almost everything, but we use different words and frames (I woke up in mid-night to write about frames today, now tired) to express them. That is why I am interested in our conversation. I am looking for solutions.

 

I think we went off to the side of the direct subject in this discussion, and for my part one of my premises is that the best and only way to understand big holistic realities is to look for commonalities in the ways that we express our perceptions of the one reality.
I like your book and I am excited that you are writing it. We all live in the same reality that we try to explain through our various paradigms, and it is important that we communicate the SIMILARITIES (especially the similarities) among these paradigms, because the more common observations we have made along the path, the more likely those common. Observations are to lead us along a path that approaches the reality. I comment on your observations not because any kind of relationship between us, but in hopes that we both can have a closer relationship with whatever that reality is.   I do not think you should see what I see or write about it. I do think it is a bit of a miracle that we both see nearly the same, even though we use different words.

 
I must confess, Lynn, that I am made uncomfortable by the way you throw around the concept of emergence. I do not deny that emergence can be a factor in the way the world orders itself. I think of a coral reef as an excellent example of an emergent structure which serves a number of important ecological functions, but as far as we know, there is no coral director directing each individual coral to contribute its share to the architectural marvel that is a coral reef. But I see this word, emergence, used by scientists and others as a way of explaining something that we just don’t understand, but leaving the impression that there is no mystery here; emergence explains it all.

 

If you choose to figure out my mental system (paradigm, after your book is completed) you will probably appreciate that I don’t throw around that term (or any term). The reason it sounds odd is because – within the corpospeak paradigm – it doesn’t make sense like it does within my paradigm. The function of a system is to perpetuate itself. The corposystem today has taken control of the information, and perpetuates itself, or recreates and exaggerates itself in every generation) mostly by defining the words and paradigms that we are permitted to use and/or understand. And then it requires us to simplify and provide cutsy coropsystem stories or examples, metaphors or some other device from within the corposystem world view in order to explain our thoughts. Which of course, said thoughts, when they come from outside the corposystem world view, are hard to understand for people who live inside the corposystem paradigm. So the English teachers  (not really, it’s the media mostly) give us an F and we learn to se only corpospeak.

 

I have given up on corpospeak. I also do not like the corposystem usage of the term emergent properties, and have spent about five years looking for a better word, but unfortunately it means what it means, and if I try a different word, then NOBODY will know what I mean. (I tried.) I am also able to switch definitions. If you have definitions I can use yours when talking to you, and in fact I think that may be the only way to bridge the information barrier that stands between the corposystem and other naturally evolved systems.

 
I don’t believe you can get something out of nothing. I don’t believe life can come from non-life; that intelligence can come from non-intelligence; that consciousness can come from non-consciousness. Materialists, who claim that the Universe consists of nothing more than inert matter operating according to nothing more than random chance and linear mechanics, try to “explain” life, consciousness, and intelligence using the magic wand of emergence–But I don’t buy it. What makes more sense to me is that the Universe itself is conscious, intelligent, and therefore alive, and must always have been so. To me, this is not an abstruse philosophical point, but vital to our very survival.

 

This could work up into another definition problem, depending on how we define life (or Life, as I refer to Lift itself to be more clear). However, I think of it more as the God question, which for me is not a problem, because I am so deeply embedded in my science that I have learned not to be bothered by things I can’t explain, except to push back at those that are harmful to the people. That is why I stress facts and non-facts so much. The facts are few, but they are incredibly important to our survival. If we know a fact, then we can evaluate the probable long-term results of our behaviors.   I can also discuss non-facts, including the God question, using other people’s definitions and belief systems or my own. Karen Armstrong, not a scientist, is also good at this. I think it’s a good thing, so long as we recognize that the human paradigms can’t change nonhuman realities.   This kind of question should definitely be discussed relative to human world views and behaviors and needs. It’s not my question because I am trying to explain a different and more useful (less harmful to the people) world view than the corposystem world view.
Maybe you can grant me the point that the people of our culture are living in wrong relationship to the natural world.

 

ABSOLUTELY. It’s all I talk about.

 

I trace this back thousands of years, beyond the axial age, to the beginnings of agriculture and private property, to what I call the Big Lie. If you believe that you and your people are separate from, and superior to, Mother Earth and the Community of Life, the psychological way is paved to treat the Earth as a dead storehouse of resources for human use as well as a garbage dump for all the toxic junk that remains after those resources have been exploited. If, on the other hand, you believe that the human is an integral part of the Community of Life, and that the Earth and all Life are sacred, you are likely to live in better relationship to the natural world you recognize as part of yourself—because everything is connected to everything else.

 

Yes, the question then becomes how to get other people to believe in a viable, fact-based reality so that we can begin to live it. These are questions about the relationships between humans and the biosystem, and the answers must be based in the facts – since we mostly now do know the facts that need to be addressed.

 

 

A corollary of the Big Lie is the narcissistic anthropocentrism that characterizes the people of our culture. We see ourselves as exceptional beings who can make our rules, while ignoring the laws of Life, including the law of reciprocity. We have given ourselves permission to take and take and never give anything back. This, too, is part of our pathological culture. And this is the root we need to dig down to.

 

This, in my opinion is a problem within the human social system (rather than specifically a problem in a relationship between a human social system and the Biosystem).   In this case we do have a naturally evolved set of instincts that can be thought of as part of our world-views. And then we have an ocean of opinions, most of which are excuses to participate in the narcissistic anthropocentrism. That is a human/human problem and may or may not be directly related to the human/other situation. The two situations differ (partly because of the emergent properties that separate systems from each other that I am not going to talk about until I can explain in context). Yes – the Big Lie is a human God question from several points of view, the most important being we are not God
I have a lifelong interest in science, but my academic training has been as a generalist—with a major in English, but with an abiding interest in history, philosophy, anthropology, and a bunch of other disciplines, too. I find all academic departments to be far too narrow in scope to get anywhere close to the realities of life—which does not divide itself into discreet departments. I see the world in holistic terms, and favor the Big Picture and the long lens of history, believing that you best understand something if you perceive it in context.

 

As a society we need to acknowledge the big picture and the details. We make bad mistakes when we ignore either or argue over facts – especially those that exist at different levels.

 

 

I took a fair amount of science classes as an undergraduate, including genetics and evolution, but I was intuitively resistant to the usual dogmas that always seem to go along with the standard scientific education–and that few science majors ever get around to questioning. As I have said, I find many of these taken-for-granted doctrines to be a poor explanation of the world we live in, and this worldview is frequently used to further our wrong relationship with the natural world.   For people whose paradigm is the corposystem I would say it is ALWAYS used to further our wrong relationship with the natural world. People who are living in the corposystem paradigm can’t even see the natural world, though they believe that they do.

 

In my would-be book I go into quite a bit of detail about this, linking scientific materialism with the Old Story that is bringing the world down around us. Nor am I confusing science with technology in this regard. Both science and technology have their own particular subcultures, and both partake of our larger deep culture, including our endemic anthropocentrism (humans above all) and our investment in the Big Lie of separation. As for what used to be called “pure science,” capitalism has made sure that almost no one can afford to study life and the world just for the joy of seeing it whole and clear.

 

Then the Big Lie qualifies as one of the common subjects that can be recognized from the viewpoint of nearly any paradigm and it therefore requires to be discussed in detail and from various viewpoints. I look forward to reading it. I haven’t been on line for a while so am behind.

 

Lynn

 

Oh yes, I think you would like “The Information” by James Gleick if you haven’t read it. I don’t care for his style, but he brings facts and ideas together better than most. Excellent on history of science.

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