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Order Out of Chaos? (Part 1) Emergent Change

SERIES: Order Out of Chaos?
AUTHOR: Jim Schofield


These papers attempt a pair of objectives. First, they see the need to deal with the claims of Mathematical Chaos (and its derivatives and developments) as are now very frequently put forward as THE means of understanding what are termed as Emergences. And second, they must attempt to re-direct our attention away from Randomness (All at once, equally) and Plurality (The Whole and the Part) to a new, more-real and indeed holistic approach, which will give all our scientific attention to a study of the nature and dynamics of the real qualitative changes, that reach positively revolutionary climaxes in actual Emergences – characterised most crucially by the most important one of all, and that which is the true measure of all such Events – the Origin of Life on Earth.

These papers commenced in 2008, and do NOT represent where the author’s current position is, but they were nonetheless an essential preparation for meaningful delivery of subsequent research, and hence an appropriate introduction for those new to these ideas.

The author has recently written a brief introduction to the series along with two addendum papers, which do indicate in which direction this work is now proceeding. The fullest now consists of:-

Order Out of Chaos: Introduction (see Blog)
I Order Out of Chaos: Emergent Change
II Order Out of Chaos: The Elements of Change
III Order Out of Chaos: Addendum
IV Order Out of Chaos: Holistic Change

These will commence in this current issue and continue over the following issues. Thereafter, further Papers on the same topic will regularly follow.

1. Mathematical Chaos is not chaos! It is a purely mathematical form of what would seem to be quite normal deterministic equations, but which, because of their nature produce wholly non-predictable outcomes, when conditions are right.

2. But the origin of this phenomenon did not initially come from Mathematics, but from situations in Reality itself, in cases where behaviour that seemed wholly determined by certain laws actually broke down to deliver what was termed Turbulence.

3. In such natural cases, there is always a strong tendency for such turbulence to subside and more predictable streamline-flow behaviour to re-establish itself. The moving between such stable forms and their chaotic interludes was recurrent and the latter always precipitated by beyond the limit conditions.

4. Now, a maths-only version of such transitions was also discovered, and it was exactly in that area that mathematical researchers expected to find the processes that both occurred in turbulence AND automatically resulted in Emergences. But this proved to be fundamentally mistaken! For though such interludes of Mathematical Chaos always ONLY arose from the old formulae, and happened solely within their aegis, the transformations in an Emergence make such equations incorrect, for a wholly new Level of Reality is involved. You cannot predict the situation following an Emergence from equations prior to that Event!

5. Nevertheless, the temptation to characterise Emergence as “determined” by the old formulae could not be resisted, and to this day this area of Mathematics is studied avidly for clues as to the origins of Life and Consciousness.

6. It is clear that all these phenomena could never cause or precipitate an Emergence. They were entirely constrained within the general prevailing stability, only showing fraying a little at the edges, but incapable of precipitating a revolution to a wholly new Level.

7. Holland and his colleagues and successors at the Santa Fe Institute tried to develop this area of Mathematics into the bridge to an Emergence but predictably failed miserably.

8. Even Chaos is part of the pluralist position in Science and Mathematics, and cannot depart from principles such as Reductionism. True Emergence is NOT caused by Mathematical Chaos.

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