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SolSeed < Chaos


Chaos is inevitable.
Chaos is frequently harmful to Life.
And yet, Chaos is necessary to allow Change from one equilibrium to the next.
SelfLove sometimes leads people to create Chaos for their own benefit,
while Empathy might lead us to try to stamp out Chaos,
but Wisdom teaches that neither course can work.
Chaos cannot be controlled, only prepared for.

A victim of God may,
Through learning adaption,
Become a partner of God.
A victim of God may,
Through forethought and planning,
Become a shaper of God.
Or a victim of God may,
Through shortsightedness and fear,
Remain God's victim,
God's plaything,
God's prey.

-Octavia Butler, Parable of the Sower

The quote above could apply just as well to a god of Chaos as to one of Change. The SolSeed Creation Story is that of Life arising on a dead world, four billion years ago--rising from chaos using the energy of Sol, shaping a chaotic world to produce local order in the first primitive cells. Somehow, through processes of synergy and feedback that we don't yet fully understand, these young proto-bacteria began to join together and form the emergent being we call Gaia, which shapes the chaos of the whole planetary environment to maintain life.

Life is a master of Chaos, but it obeys the iron law that the Chaos of the Universe as a whole must always increase, ending with the SolSeed destruction myth: the heat death of the Universe, when entropy (the physical measure of Chaos) reaches a maximum.

Chaos and Recycling

In his first book, Gaia: A new look at life on Earth, James Lovelock observes: "Pollution is not, as we are so often told, a product of moral turpitude. It is an inevitable consequence of life at work. The second law of thermodynamics clearly states that the low-entropy and intricate, dynamic organization of a living system can only function through the excretion of low-grade [high-entropy] products and low-grade energy to the environment. Criticism is only justified if we fail to find neat and satisfactory solutions which eliminate the problem while turning it to advantage. To grass, beetles, and even farmers, the cow's dung is not pollution but a valued gift. In a sensible world, industrial waste would not be banned but put to good use."

I would add that the only reason the raw materials of life can be endlessly recycled in this fashion is that their chemical potential can always be recharged with energy from Sol or from the internal heat of Terra.

Chaos and TheDestiny

A little more than 7.5 billion years from now, when the Sun collapses into a white dwarf, life will no longer be able to hold on in this solar system unless an alternate energy source can be provided. Of course, by then it is quite possible that either humanity or some other intelligent species will have found a way to carry life to other stars, thus fulfilling TheDestiny.

Even at present, no matter how hard life tries, large-scale chaos is always breaking out in the form of wildfires, hurricanes, meteor impacts, and other natural disasters. Any plan aimed at sustaining a biosphere, whether on Earth or elsewhere, must include extensive contingency planning to ensure that it will be flexible enough to recover from such events.

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