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entropy, chaos, harmony, speculative fiction, literary fiction, theoretical physics

The water blends hot and cold, and wears down the stones to sand, but does this beach look like chaos to you, or a beautiful harmony? When you think of entropy, are you the observer of the beach, or a stone being transformed?

The thought is that you can’t unbreak a vase. The universe tends toward entropy. If you pour a hot glass of water into a cold one, you can’t re-separate them. They become warm. Entropy. People come into life (ideally) in perfect shape, with perfect skin, perfectly aligned bones, cells that reproduce normally. And then they grow, hit a peak, and decay. No one un-dies. (This is debatable for fans of zombie fiction and, well, Jesus, but that’s another topic. Still with me?)

But….

What if the vase breaking redistributes its molecules into the stardust from which it was born? What if hot water and cold water combine to form a harmonious balance? What if we die simply to make room for someone else to take their turn to live and even the stars burning out make room for something else to come? What if the universe tends toward balance? That isn’t chaos. That is a beautiful harmony balanced over time. That’s action creating history. I see harmony in the nature of music, color, the wavelengths of light, the patterns of nature, the movement of the heavenly bodies. What is this entropy? Is it chaos, a tendency toward death and decay? Or are we looking at something from the perspective of things that don’t want to decay and die and so interpret this phenomenon as chaos, when it is in fact a piece of a harmonious whole? What if entropy is a piece of harmony, and it’s a matter of perspective how you view it?

I haven’t been thinking on this long and I’m no theoretical physicist, so maybe I’m missing something, but this makes sense to me, and it certainly leads to interesting trains of thought on the nature and possible purpose of the universe. What do you think? Comments or further thoughts on this strange thing known as entropy?

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