Re: Essence LO135

Tobin Quereau (
Thu, 16 Feb 1995 08:55:36 -0600 (CST)

Replying to LO125:

I like the thread of discussion here concerning energy, organization, and
systems. As I read some of the comments, they are leading me--organizing
me?--to another level of consideration. Perhaps it is not the energy that
organizes _or_ the information, but the "consciousness" (for lack of a
better word) within the "system" which responds to both.

I realize that the notion of consciousness is applied only to humans in
many people's perspective. The thought that it might be present in some
form throughout the whole of the cosmos usually doesn't show up except in
religious or spiritual contexts. I just know, however, that energy itself
can impact the "system" I call my "office", but rarely introduces
"organization" (in fact, most often the reverse!) and information itself
manages only to pile up with amazing rapidity into random stacks of
processed wood pulp and dust. Such organization as does occur comes only
with the _awareness_ that I can no longer function under the circumstances
and simply must begin once again to re-organize the mess.

I know this facetious example does not account for the fact that the
"mess" is just another form of organization, or that the information I
receive from such places as people, books, and listservs does help me to
come to the conclusions that it is time to get "organized" again. The
essential presence of the "consciousness", however, is what impacts the
process most, neither the energy or the information alone will produce the
increase of complexity and learning which drives the system to continue
and to grow.

Are we really looking at the continuing flow of "consciousness" as
suggested in ancient spiritual traditions and modern philosophers,
theologians, and scientists such as Teilhard de Chardin, Rupert Sheldrake,
David Bohm, and others when we address the issue of learning
organizations? I like to think that we are. If the "learning" that takes
place in a tropical rain forest, on a city playground, and in a global
network of electronic signals is all connected, then maybe there is hope
that the whole process will continue in spite of our meager abilities to
understand it. (It also makes my 7+ years spent as a pre-school teacher as
relevent to my current job as they seem to be to me!)

I know this has meandered far afield from the thread to date, but I'd like
to know if there are others who find these speculations of some value at
least. I know it makes my life more rewarding to play with such notions.

Tobin Quereau
Austin Community College

On Tue, 14 Feb 1995, Michael McMaster wrote:

> Reply to: LO90
> My response to "energy flowing through a system tends to organise it" is
> that energy flows don't organise anything. In my very limited
> understanding, energy flows are also subject to entropy. What isn't
> subject to entropy, what creates neg-entropy, is information. Information
> is what organises.
> --
> Michael McMaster
> From: (Michael McMaster)