Building Blocks & Paradox

Epistemology Jan 14, 2021

Naturally chaotic patterns!

Inquiring into this vivid reality, one finds chaotic natural patterns omnipresent from sea to sky; constituting themselves in the formation and growth of trees, plants, crystals and snowflakes. They are an abundance of integrated systems instrumental in the shaping of lightning, galaxies, rivers, mountains and even our own circulatory systems.

The term applicable to these patterns is “fractal”; usually taken to mean “non-regular geometric constructs that exhibit the same degree of non-regularity at all scales” — for a visual example, just reference the above picture.

Observing such, we can see that on one hand fractals probabilistically conform to a larger pattern, while at more granular levels they exhibit seemingly radical levels of non-conformity between each-other — just like grains of sand!

Meta Patterns

As building blocks of practically everything maybe we can consider fractals as a biomimetic meta-pattern:

  • Linguistically trying to define them, a phenomena of repeating paradox occurs! Assign a descriptor to one of their displayed attributes (like the “finite” equation below) and the antonym can usually also be applied (as in the “infinite” animation).
  • As fractals are everywhere; contradiction and paradox are thus also present in everything. They are ordered yet chaotic, static yet transformative; a stable open system. Here's a picture based example and more attributes for the same thing:
  • Perhaps then reality is an integrala singularity or “whole system” — our experience of separateness is thus potentially an illusory derivative. Taking opposites and appreciating both sides we generate a win-win pluralistic integration, not a zero-sum competition.
  • Attention to quality and quality of attention. Another frame is that we live in an age of digital abundance yet our attention is limited; we should curate how we spend our time — every tangent is a potential vacuum and decisions are fractal chains of causality. Make good decisions - getting closer to nature is about being present while developing a sense of aesthetics in the infinite.
“Everything in moderation, including moderation!”
Oscar Wilde

Practical applications

Yin Yang, One Two, Subjective Objective; a complete Gestalt when integrated.

A paradoxical statement gifted to me while on my travels was:

“stay with the group on your own trip”.

An integrative scenario that says a lot. Most endeavors are just “trip” or general abstraction. Since we have everything we need right here, perhaps we should just coordinate, trust and educate each other!

Personal, local, global

Giving up command and control power structures means to reintegrate at the personal level — ourselves, the grass roots — while recognising chains of causality that we are affected by, and put into effect.

Individuals form the primitives of the larger group who change and are changed by their context personally, locally and globally — balance in the individual is then probably a first principal towards unlocking scale-free potential. Intentional communities grow through necessary and sufficient action undertaken by the parties involved; without this we get the emergence of interference patterns — by which I mean people and communications start to phase, cancel out and dissipate 😔.

This is why attention to quality and quality of attention is important; which essentially translates to creativity so the first script we should be writing is our own — on an iterative cycle! Any pattern we recognise ourselves repeating should be empirically tested for validity — the interoceptive definition of “skin in the game”.

So the personal level is an intentionally iterative practice at “being human” while integrating a paradox of “holding the tension” into our lives… the difference between where we are and where we want to be. The difference between whats necessary and sufficient. Delta.

Local then represents a place of contextual immediacy exterior to ourselves — where we are, and the company we are keeping. Raising a forest of knowledge is probably the fastest route towards regenerative change — patterns ripple outward casually which warp the shape of our shared reality. Let’s teach, learn and share!

The global scale seems driven by memetic function — ideas are the seeds we propagate into tools and software. Stories and shared knowledge create and coordinate — currency and companies are simply memetic units of account. Bitcoin is a meme. So what other kind of stories should we appreciate?

“From little things big things grow”
Paul Kelly
An iteration of the original song ;)

Thanks to this crew for review; Micheal, Maija, Dani and Kai for reviewing and commenting on various iterations of this document.


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