[Synapse elist] vitalism

roger malina roger.malina at oamp.fr
Tue Mar 18 18:14:14 CST 2008


George

Coming back to the vitalism discussion, and the Lovelock
prognostication. it seems to me one of the issues is how we
build cultural visions of the future where as climate changes,
we do indeed avoid the catastrophic scenario of reduction
of world population to 1 billion on a short timescale.

The issue then becomes one of planetary systems management ( i have
a parrallel discussion going with ian clothier on this) and one of
the questions then becomes what configuration of life forms
on the planet is desirable as an outcome for planetary systems
management. Is the status quo the desirable outcome in terms
of the web of life that say existed 500 years ago as baseline ?
Or is the outçome that is desired an evolution of the web of life
that is responsive to the new climate situation, but avoiding
catastrophic change via famines plagues etc

The issue of planetary systems management then foregrounds
our ability to intentionally intervene in natural selection processes
( which human society has been doing unintentionally).

There is also some discussion going on with Ranulph Granville
about the 60th anniversary of Weiners cybernetics book, the
work of Heiz von Foerster who argued for In v the "cybernetics of observing
systems".

So is there an equivalent concept to vitalism, that creates a
non materialistic but value embedded framework for "graceful
evolution of a self observing system". Or maybe this is all hubris and
Lovelock is right=
the system is going to re adjust itself to the new constraints.

Cultural visions and the work of artists in these areas I think
are important. If Cynernetics Serendipity were restaged today,
bio art and bio cybernetics would be part of the agenda.

roger

sorry i am out of phase with the exhibiting topic
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