Friday, November 28, 2008

The Real World Order Is Chaotic (Butler Shaffer)

Butler Shaffer thinks it's time for a major paradigm shift in our thinking:

Chaos is found in greatest abundance wherever order is being sought. Chaos always defeats order because it is better organized.

~ Terry Pratchett

My last words on the gallows will be to praise the study of chaos. For the sake of our very survival as a species, the destructive and dysfunctional nature of our highly-structured world may soon force humanity into an outburst of intelligence. Should that occur, an understanding of the creative and orderly processes of chaos may save us from the consequences of our collective hubris.

What can be more insane than mankind’s continuing insistence upon playing out the simple-minded notion that the intricacies and variability of our complex world can be fully comprehended and rendered manageable by wise leaders? In a world caught up in the madness of wars, genocidal campaigns, economic depressions, and the resort – by some – to the despair implicit in suicide bombings, there is no better occasion for us to consider a major paradigm shift in our thinking.

"Desperation" may well be the best word to describe our current responses to the ubiquitous malfunctioning of social systems premised on the necessity for vertically-structured, top-down, command-and-control organizational forms. Western civilization collapses all around us, and yet most of us continue to insist upon a renewed commitment to variations of the Platonic vision of a world made orderly by philosopher-kings.

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