Societies of Glass

Societies of Glass

Critical societies, critical gases, critical pressure, critical tension, critical values, critical conditions and critical points are just few of the examples that we use frequently. These all share the word critical. Is there a way to focus our understanding of what we mean by critical so that we may understand our world better?

Systems that are from equilibrium are in a state of tension. When this tension rises quickly we reach a critical state that may force restructuring of the system and eventually to its disruption. Societies, trees, gases and polymers are examples of systems that may experience a state of severe conditions that put them in critical states. How these systems behave? Are there common threads among them? Can we then derive lessons to understand better the extreme tensions our societies are exposed to and to what would happen to them if these tensions are not removed or reduced.

A gas like carbon dioxide may be subject to extreme conditions of temperatures and pressures that place it in critical conditions. If we study the behavior of the gas we see that it has the following diagram- the phase diagram.

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Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Source- https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4315735

We notice from the diagram that exposing the gas to high temperatures and pressures it turns supercritical fluid. It is a fluid and not a gas anymore. This fluid has exceptional qualities as finds many novel applications as solvent in pharmaceutical, chemical and food industries. The point I wish to highlight here is that being in a far from equilibrium state the gas rearranged to a fluid with some unique qualities. This is the way to respond to critical conditions.

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For explanations see the video below.

We can see from the image and video how a polymer may change its properties under critical condition and either fall below its glass transition temperature or above it with very much different behaviors and properties. The phase diagram is like that we noted above for the phase diagram of carbon dioxide.

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Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Β Source- http://slideplayer.com/slide/9715991/

The logistic equation shows similar behavior.

For example, the rate of population increase may be high enough so that the capacity of land to accommodate all population will reach a critical state. This results in population bifurcating into two values, then between four values and eventually to reach a chaotic state because the capacity of land has become very critical to accommodate all occupants.

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The conclusion is the same as that we arrived for gases or polymers as discussed above. New structures and behaviors result upon exposure to extreme conditions.

What does have all the previous discussions to do with critical societies?

Well, the societal cycles are usually shown in a circular diagram of four phases. The Ideas phase leading to their exploitation by smart investors and then the accumulation of wealth in few hands. This leads to critical societal conditions that may disrupt societies and to allow for the emergence of new societal structures. It occurred to me that it would be better to arrange these phases in a phase diagram like what we discussed above. Here is what I came up with:

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Our societies are rapidly increasing critical states and hopefully not to reach a β€œsocietal” Glass” that is fragile and fall upon stress like fractured glass do. I recall here the comment of Namita Sinha on my previous buzz shared on LinkedIn, in which she wrote β€œthrough self-awareness and conscious intention, we can train our brain to transform our lives. In the intensity of our current tumultuous times, getting a handle on our thoughts might be the very thing needed to deal with the chaos and boost ideation and creativity”. The image shows how ideation and chaos are inter-linked. This resonates well with what Lisa Morganweck wrote on same link β€œOur souls were not meant to be β€œgrafted” together like the splicing of two different species of trees. It is a finite balance of togetherness and separation that keeps the human interest in another and individuality of self in synch. Just my random thoughts mind you”. This ties up beautifully with what Edward Lewellen β€œtogether alone”.

Critical conditions make the muscles of our minds antifragile, or as fragile as glass. It is up to us to choose.




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Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#42
Thank you for your interesting sharing of the buzz Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #32

The discussion of critical points within societies seems to forever go on. @Ali Anani attempts to bring order in discussing the critical attributes of nature and society. Join the discussion as we explore the possibilities.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#40
My dear friend Vincenzo De Florio- you know very well that your opinion and input count heavily for you are an established authority on antifragility. I am pleased to read your comment. What is surprising for me is that your comment arrived concurrently with an idea that I am entertaining now in my mind. The critical conditions of financial markets and how they collapse and relating this to criticality. I envisage a stock market with two investors- one with greed approach and the other with fear and risk-avoiding mentality. The greedy investor is the predator while the fearsome investor is the prey. Now, as more investors join we have more predator and preys. The logistic equation applies similar to that of the well-researched prey-predator system and how the system shows repeating patterns. I am still firming my mind on this idea. Yes, being a critical condition and far from equilibrium the system shall be to reach a yielding point. This is a great point and I thank you immensely for highlighting this . I learn from you my friend.

Bill Stankiewicz, 🐝 Brand Ambassador

Great πŸ‘

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

Thank you Renoy George for sharing the buzz. I appreciate it.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#29
Renoy George- Complexity started from observations in climatic changes biology and other sciences. We then tried to apply the concept on human organizations. We learnt self-organizing from ants behavior, to give one example. You are spot on to say that we need to get stronger in times of tension. In sports they use Tension Training to make the muscles stronger without outside effects. I concur completely with your comment.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#28
Zacharias \ud83d\udc1d Voulgaris- You used a term that sparked many thoughts in my mind. I refer to "excessive fluidity of our environments". Superfluidity is the characteristic property of a fluid with zero viscosity which therefore flows without loss of kinetic energy. When stirred, a superfluid forms cellular vortices that continue to rotate indefinitely (Wikipedia). This is a self-sustaining of indefinite rotation. So, as you quite observed, these prevailing climates require the build of antifragility to cope with.

Zacharias 🐝 Voulgaris

Perhaps this excessive fluidity of our environments is a sign of our times, which are plagued with this disordered change process, spinning out of control. Yet, as you very well stated, times like these are a great opportunity to develop anti-fragility and learn to transform this chaos into strength.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#26
Thank you @Mason Carl

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#24
Well-said and nobody likes to be led unconsciously. Wakening up to this makes people feel cheated, utilized, and this may even lead to an increased level of tension. Manufactured tension is going against nature, while natural tension goes with nature.

CityVP Manjit

CityVP Manjit

3 years ago #23

#23
The important aspect here is that human beings if they are conditioned with this manufactured tension, have the opportunity to learn and then adapt back to the natural tension of nature. This has profound consequence because our fight and flight system is conditioned to natural tension that exists in nature, but we react to artificial stimulus, which is directly from conditioned response. We begin to alleviate many stresses and psychic disorder causes when we realize how led we really are, rather than leading. I agree that human beings do seek tension but if that is conditioned rather than a choice then the benefit of insight is at hand - at least for the few, liberated by such tension.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#22
"Manufactured tension"- what a great expression this is CityVP \ud83d\udc1d Manjit! We may generalize this to manufactured emotions or manufactured conditioning of human beings. This is a crime that is not considered a crime. Yes, I fully agree with you that there are natural tensions and there are imposed tension. As if the natural tension isn't enough and adding to it manufactured tension. Yes, there is a distinct boundary between the two, but greed make them appear as one. However; I must add that humans seek tension> People would rush to watch a movie full of manufactured tension because they have been conditioned to do so.

CityVP Manjit

CityVP Manjit

3 years ago #21

Much of what we refer to as orderly society contain manufactured tension. it is not the tension of nature, it is not even dog eat dog but marketer dining on superficial tension - a tension we have been conditioned to accept and using Debasish Majumder poem as an inspiration - a tension that is a melodrama. This tension means we eat when we are full, we do not starve when we do not work, we have our food supply catered for simple purchase, we have fridges and taps that give us easy access to liquid replenishment. Then we turn on the news and we see the extremes in the world projected on our benign conditioning and we see where tension equates with nature - real tension rather than manufactured tension. The more freedom a society has, our media projects as violent and in chaotic condition and there exists the paradox of tension - where the very news we are receiving of a chaotic state such as certain areas of the Middle East (like Gaza) are shown as massive points of tension. Yet the news is not educating us to alleviate that tension but manufacture more tension by reframing what is actually creating that tension and so tension where we view it, from our privileged positions in "orderly society" is formed not of natures law but from human melodrama - a mythic, irrational and conditioned power-play that provides us freedom as a paradox - and the tension we express is far removed from the tension we would actually experience if we were unprotected from nature. Today we exist with this unnatural product called fake news - and so should we not spend more time focused on the creation of fake tension?

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#19
This is a great observation Bill King. The rate of flow is a critical factor in changing the direction of the flow of rivers. The rate of population growth is also a determining factor in reaching a critical state after which they self-organize or end up in total chaos. Many compounds show different behaviors if heated or cooled fast than if they were heated/cooled gradually. So, the flow of information has indeed a role in making it behave like a super-fluid. Like supercritical fluid, the viscosity and surface tension disappear and so they flow freely. Information flow is indeed like what you describe in your supercritical comment.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#18
Thank you Jerry Fletcher for sharing your views. We are chemical molecules and our body communication depend on transferring waves to information. This is not my main focus today. So, in response to your mind-stretching comment I say the following. The buzz is an attempt to show where systems experience high tension they tend to adapt by many ways and including restructuring. The point here is to learn from tangible results how systems respond to critical conditions. Humans need to restructure to become antifragile. We have turned or attempting to emulate systems and the way they respond to complexity. Self-organizing teams is just one example. Molecules self-organize, birds and fish self-organize, ants and bees self-organize. We borrow the concept, but its adaptation to people is where we need lots of creativity.

Jerry Fletcher

Jerry Fletcher

3 years ago #18

Dr. Anani, Once again you have stretched my limited mental resources well beyond their normal stamping grounds. I'm not so sure that our minds work like the gas to supercritical fluid example. If there were outcomes to scientific experiments that are not replicable we might believe in magic or at least question the experiment. But when it comes to minds and particularly groups of minds the phrase that most often comes to minds is "It depends." I believe that individuals, groups and societies are nowhere near as predictable as chemistry or physics. Moreover, I would be extremely concerned if that were the case.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#16
I am happy to read a comment by you Cyndi wilkins. If the fractal brain like yours would experience meltdown it shall give running stream of good ideas. Not all brains are fractal

Cyndi wilkins

Cyndi wilkins

3 years ago #16

Ali \ud83d\udc1d Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee....According to this, getting a handle on our thoughts and acknowledging the power contained within them is the ONLY thing we can do to ensure survival during such tumultuous times...Thank you for piquing my awareness back to the self before the impending meltdown of my brain;-)

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#14
I wonder sometimes why you don't study philosophy of science in human societies. You are aware of this topic and it occupies your mind dear Debasish Majumder

Debasish Majumder

Debasish Majumder

3 years ago #14

#13
i am amazed how in a difficult situation too a tree exist and precisely how in the trunk of a tree water being transported to the upper surface and i wonder, water being di-electric, whether light possess the speed of quasar, making an amazing impact, enabling photosynthesis to take place! however, intriguing proposition indeed that individuals choice plays a major role! thank you very much sir Ali \ud83d\udc1d Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee for sharing such enriching vision.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#10
Thank you dear Debasish Majumder for sharing your critical thoughts and sharing the buzz. The theme of the buzz is that when we put a system in a critical state it either collapses (like a pile of sand), or it re-organize itself. Yes, external factors put us in critical situations and we have the choice of falling like a pile of sand or self-organize to have more agility to adapt to changes. Self-organizing helps in adapting to those critical conditions. Look at tree and how they behave in critical conditions such as in deserts and forests with very heavy rain and snow. They restructure and organize to adapt. This is the reasonable approach to take.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#9
I believe my previous comment is in complete alignment with your comment here. Your comment clarifies the way on how to approach strategic thinking. I believe you helped in redefining strategic thinking and how to train people to think strategically. Bravo:)))

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#8
I believe you are describing a reiteration process. We change B hoping that c would be the outcome, except that we may be surprised that either we failed or something else emerged. Our focus will now fluctuate between understanding what emerged and changing our assumptions and test them again hoping that we get C. I want to reconfigure your simple, but thought-provoking equation. If we add a constant A to a variable B we end up with a variable C. Likewise; if we add a finite A to an infinite B the result is infinite C. Without freedom of the individuals to change assumptions and try again and then taking the output as an input for the next trial we end up fighting a losing battle. Great thoughts

Debasish Majumder

Debasish Majumder

3 years ago #10

i wonder whether do we really have a choice to sustain ourselves in a certain state if the external factors are so intense to determine our very existence? liked the changing state as fluid owing to heat and pressure and tension. if Oxygen can react with nitrogen and form nitrous oxide in high temperature, causing acid rain, will we consider that state as mere disruption and avoid our responsibility, if our disruptive technology is the reason? though i cannot rule out nature alone can cause such disruption and disruption is a natural phenomena too! however, lovely buzz sir Ali \ud83d\udc1d Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee! enjoyed read and shared. thank you for the buzz sir.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #9

#7
Your thoughts describe the miracle. Humans have managed to survive themselves for an epoch. But what is/was this weak force that held humanity back from the brink of self destruction. Humanity made choices where they preferred death rather than our world become something unlivable. So this eliminates self preservation. C=A+B. Sated this way can now contain our chaos within the realm of possibilities. When C is eliminated or kept out of reach then A&B become free radicals that enter into a chaotic state. Order can not be achieved unless the freedom to choose C makes sense when aligned to A&B. Humanity must always side with the opportunity for the formula to work itself out. We can enhance specific groups opportunity but we cant decide or measure C outside the individual. We can educate towards the selection of the best B and we can subsidise the A to make C reachable. But we can not select the C and then provide the A&B for the individual. Consciousness is a tool that dulls over time if not engaged in C. My high thoughts of you are surrounding this simple fact. You may have retired from the time/value market but you are still in pursuit of C. Bravo:)

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #8

#6
A is finite while B is infinite and C is the variable in which we constantly monitor for changes to A. The point of contention is that B is infinite. Choosing a paradigm to act on will set the course for many aspects of life. We may fluctuate in intensity between A and B but C will always be the reason we base our decisions that cause the fluctuation. The polymers are reflecting the choices made in A, which predict/discover C. Within humanity we we should choose C then select the B that we sense will achieve the goal with the least amount of A. If B requires more than the A we have then we have to reselect while holding C as the goal. This formula only works if there is enough freedom within the system at each input/outcome. If i were to limit the amount of heat that can be applied to water to 211 degrees then steam would be more costly to produce. Humanity requires the broadest self determination that can be afforded within opportunity that does not infringe on the individual's ability to explore this paradigm. The complexity arises when we attempt to manage the outcomes via equity, in lieu of opportunity. This seems irrational when we consider "A" How can unequal inputs equal the same "C"?

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#5
When pendulums synchronized their movement in a church Newton was inspired with many laws. Sometimes because systems in nature behave without being conscious and repeat their behavior help us humans to learn and build on consciously. What happens later we take what we achieved for granted and develop unconscious habits of doing things. This resulted in the behaviors that your friend noticed. In humans, there is no consciousness without "hidden" unconsciousness as there is no order without disorder. So much to digest from your comments Harvey Lloyd

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#4
Harvey Lloyd- a confession first as I was swinging between two choices: to write this buzz first or another buzz. Guess what? The buzz based on your comment on my previous post in which you wrote "How to Remove Barnacles. If you're the owner of a boat, it's very likely that you've encountered the problem of barnacles adhering to the hull of your ship". I decided on writing this buzz first because your comment will be explained better if I publish this one first. Now, in this comment you prove me right in making this decision. Your comment is a matter of selecting one choice out of two. The right brain, or the left brain to give one more example. Your point the choice between family and work interests, which could be contradicting sometimes. I love the way you expressed this. I believe we need to fluctuate between the two as conditions demand. Or, have them meet in one single point. Polymers have a choice between being rigid and strong, or being glassy with mobility, resilience, but with lowered strength. The issue becomes much harder to deal with when the rate of swinging becomes so fast and hardly any time to think about what choice to make. This leads to increased confusion and less stability. So much to consider and think about before writing a post on this comment. It is so deep.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #5

Consciousness is what separates us from the natural physics we understand. Amazingly if we exert the same energy on a physical element we can measure and get the same results each time. However with consciousness within humanity these results are never the same. Although we exert energy into the humanity it doesn't behave as one would expect. What is seemingly a benevolent act can become poisonous to the community. A friend who is employed by the Railroad described a study that showed accidents at crossings increased because signals were installed. Drivers apparently became focused on beating the signal and didn't look for trains coming. Instead of self reliance it became mechanical reliance. This is but one example of millions where we have installed things that stopped us from being aware. Thanks for your thought provoking post as always.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #4

If A is the energy acting on B, the society, gas, solid or liquid then the = would be C the outcome of positive/negative value. A&B is what we explore in our universe for the value of knowledge, wealth or humanity. The value of A is directly correlated with the value of C. It would be foolish to insert 10 units of A for an outcome of 5 units of C. This is a general perspective not a scientific understanding. All of the conditions of B have direct impact on the humanity and its existence. Either enhancing or debilitating the condition. We have two points of interest in this equation. 1.Mankind's search for truth and value and then at the personal level; 2. My commitment to A and selection of B to act on. Somehow 1&2 have merged to form up an equity statement of outcome. I made some pretty harsh choices early in life. Family was my B. Work and effort, A was for this purpose. I passed on many opportunities because they put B at risk i couldn't live with. This was my choice. Someone who puts wealth as their B and expresses A with vigilance achieves their C. Should we compare these C outcomes as being equal? Keeping in mind that C is about A being sustained for period of time. The opportunity for me to choose the level of A and the B to act on, is a freedom we should not have mandated by the equity comparison.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

David Navarro L\u00f3pez- may be you find the material of this buzz relevant to the book you are writing. My best wishes for you

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

Dear Drs. Vincenzo De Florio- if your time would ever allow you for feedback I would be very grateful. I think the post is relevant to what you research on.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

namita sinha- you are mentioned in this buzz

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