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Posted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 4:55 pm
by Michael_00005
In all walks of life we will see how the same or similar rules govern an entity at various scales. For example we see an increase from: an individual, to family, community, city, state, country, and finally the entire world. It also might be worth noting, that if the integrity of the family unit is compromised, eventually you see that same crumbling effect in the country and then throughout the world.

Now for a leap; suppose we look at a person’s body in a similar fashion, where a single cell could represent our starting point, and the entire body would represent the entire world. Suppose one cell looks over at another cell and decides that, that cell is a separate unit (individuality is born). Not only is it a separate unit, but it certainly appears to be getting more than its fair share of food, wealth, fame, ect., “what can be done”, the poor cell cry’s!

Now down the rabbit hole; suppose we equate man, animal, fish, or bird, etc. to an individual “cell” and the entire “world” represents our “body”. Maybe man is not an individual body as he assumes but in reality a tiny part of a much larger whole. Where man’s relationship to the entire world might simply represent in single cell’s relationship to the entire human body. It would look something like this:

cell to human body
Man to World

Now suppose, God forbid, a person were to get skin cancer. Skin cancer is simply a deranged cell that no longer works in harmony with the whole, you might say it’s become perverted. So the collective intelligence of the whole looks to resolve the issue, maybe some sort of cream is administered, or it’s burnt off, surgery, radiation, etc.. The simple logic is, that for the good of the whole, the deranged cells have to go!

Now the body is really a remarkable system and will attempt to auto correct any imbalances. For example, one common technique the body uses to fight off a virus is to increase the bodies temperature. The body knows the virus cannot survive the increased heat, and so for the good of the whole (although uncomfortable for all cells) it administers the cure (heat). Now this is simply one of many alternatives the immune system can apply to restore balance in the entire body.

And what if the “world” is simple a single cell within the entire universe and itself is part of a much greater whole. Would we still place so much importance on our tiny existence?

I wonder if looking from this angle would change how we interact with other people, animals, the environment, and the planet as a whole? Would we still behave the same, promoting harmony after-all is enriching the whole, of which we are part.

Re: Scale

Posted: Fri Nov 10, 2017 7:59 am
by vexed87
Truth is, we are simply victims of our own success.

The current dominant story is that man is like god and can consume and produce as much as he needs and wants, and once all has been consumed, much like our finite supplies of wood, coal, oil and gas, we can simply use human ingenuity to fix the problems turn scarcity back to plenty. Thus resources are unlimited, therefore scale doesn't matter. We can just throw more resources (energy) at it.

Changing the stories we tell ourselves can have a marked effect on how much we consume, how we treat each other and organise as a society, this in turn determines our footprint on the the wild and our immediate environment. If you are interested in exploring this, the Dark Mountain Project is essentially a quest to determine which stories we need to tell and hear if we are to protect the planet and it's biodiversity, and thus our own prosperity. ... n-project/

Also, if you are interested reading more about scale and economy within the context of human social organisation:
Small is Beautiful: ... +beautiful
and, Human Scale: ... UTF8&psc=1

Re: Scale

Posted: Thu Mar 22, 2018 6:19 pm
by Michael_00005
Thanks vexed87, I'll browse through some of your links.

Re: Scale

Posted: Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:20 am
by TheProcess
Reminds me of this book I had checked out of the library a couple of months ago (sadly it came due before I could get more than a chapter or two in, but would be a good read for someone who found the OP interesting). What I remember learning from it is that the self-similar nature of natural and human systems come with constraints that predict behavior at various levels of scale.

Geoffrey West, Scale ... 1594205582

And what if the “world” is simple a single cell within the entire universe and itself is part of a much greater whole. Would we still place so much importance on our tiny existence?
Reminds me of this podcast [] with Ezra Klein and Robert Wright in which the latter posits (I think) that the sense of self we all feel to distinguish our personhood from others is an evolutionarily derived mechanism that doesn't necessarily match reality, and that circumventing this mechanism (e.g. via psilocybin or mindfulness meditation) brings you more in line with reality.