Monday, May 18, 2009

SOHOLUTION: Skill-up & Power-down

(What Exactly is SOHOLUTION?)(Everything & everyone are skilling up and powering down. Are you?)

Everything skills up and powers down, eventually. There seems to be no exception. Not even the Universe, perhaps. This is the direct result of the Thermodynamics of Self-Organization: operation of the Self-Organizing Holarchi Open (SOHO) system.

To understand SOHOLUTION (SOHO Evolution), we need first to know more about Dissipative Structures and Holarchy.

Prof. Ilya Prigogine (Nobel Laureate) showed that, when dealing open systems with an enduring flow of Exergy (useable quality Energy, such as sun-light), spontaneous emergence of coherent behavior and organization can occur to dissipate or degrade the Exergy (Exergy Degradation Principle). More Exergy is applied (within limits or the “window of vitality”), more organizations emerge, as the systems attempt to dissipate or degrade the externally applied gradients. Such systems are therefore known as Dissipative Structures.

The term Dissipative Structures take on a new meaning. No longer is the emergence of self-organizing structure a surprise, but rather it is an expected response of a system as it attempts to dissipate the externally applied gradients. Therefore, given enough time, there are things rather than “no-things”, and there is life rather than no life.

Furthermore, the levels of organizations constitute a Holarchy which is a generalized version of the traditional hierarchy, with reciprocal power relationships between levels rather than a preponderance of power from the top downward. A particular system of this type is termed “holon” because it occurs in a contextually nested or holarchic reality with mutual causality guiding reciprocal interactions between a holon and proximate contiguous holons of different scales …. “always partial, already whole” kind of situation.

In other words, things “skill-up” or get better organized. Things become more complex, within the allowable limits. We (you and me and everyone else alive today) are all Dissipative Structures and Holons, the roles we should all value and treasure. Otherwise we will be morons instead!

Then, there is the power-down aspect. In thermodynamic terms, things always get back to their equilibrium positions or maximum entropy (“diffused” or “disordered”). In a close system, power down would be the only end result possible. The Universe, taken as a whole, could be a close system, thus leading to eventual heat death. Likewise, the Earth itself is a close system, unless maximum efforts are put to “green” it so that the photosynthesis (the original solar power) could continue to serve the Earth as long as the Sun lasts.

With the convergence of the crisis Food / Fuel / Finance etc facing mankind, we are fast becoming the Generation-E (Environment, Energy, Equity, Enterprise and E-commerce) in human history. Power-down (slow-down and scale-down, "Small Is Beautiful", "Minus Is Plus", "Slow Food Movement", Permaculture etc. etc.), might well be the only wise move for us, while still making life worthwhile, meaningful and fun in an entirely different way.

So, it really looks like Life is Skill-up and Power-down journey. This is SOHOLUTION (SOHO Evolution). Perhaps, it is also the SOLUTION we are looking for. Perhaps, the Social-Environmental Entrepreneurship (SEE) approach might be just right for you.

Check out more on Your Personal Plan for Skill-up & Power-down in Year 2009.

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