Saturday, April 25, 2015

Law of natural selection: the evolution of matter from lower to higher form

* Hindi ako sigurado kung saan ko ito napulot. Ngayon ko lang ulit nakita sa computer ko.

Electrons and protons never thought that when they interact through some mechanisms they eventually form hydrogen atoms. Neither do more atoms plus some more electrons and protons thought that heavier atoms and molecules would form when they interact with each other. The amazing thing about how matter evolve to increasingly more complex forms is that these processes happen without the interacting components thinking about whether to form this or that physical structure. These happen spontaneously as if nature is doing one big experiment with different combinations of processes and components.

Photo from here
By the law of natural selection, the stable structures survive while the unstable ones go extinct. The surviving structures continue to participate in another round of interactions with other existing structures both advanced or backward evolutionarily speaking. For example, a methane molecule (advanced structure) can bump into a hydrogen molecule (backward relative to methane) and produce another structure which may be stable or unstable. New kind of structures may emerged out of several existing ones. As an example, consider the formation of cell membranes out of lipids; cell membranes have functions and properties which cannot be found in any single lipid molecules. The entire development of matter in the universe is governed by the laws of matter, many of which still remain to be discovered and understood.

This is also true even for human interactions and the development of societies. Societies are not just collections of individual human beings. As soon as social classes emerged, societies ceased to be just a collection of individuals and begin to be governed by the laws of social classes wherein one ruling class dominates over the rest. When one speaks of a class, one is not referring to certain individuals although for some time there are individuals who play specific roles within a social class. A social class, therefore, is an emergent structure and thus have functions and properties that are not possessed by individuals comprising them.

In a society, organizations are formed, exist for some time, grow big, lead to new organizations, or die. Even an extinct organization can still influence the formation of future organizations in terms of lessons on why it went extinct. Failed organizations therefore are important in that respect, which brings us to the point of constantly assessing the weaknesses and strengths of an organization.

Going back to how higher structures are made, it happens not because the interacting elements specifically aimed at making them but because of a continuous experimentation in forming something out of all possible interactions. When something stable emerged, it will exist forever or until newly-formed structures later in the experiment make it unstable. In the same vein, a program for a social movement is just a program, a subjective one and can never be expected to be realized exactly. They must undergo the cycle of implementation, assessment, and adjustment. There is no such thing as an ideal program or an ideal society.

There is however a higher form of society, the exact structure of which can never be determined but can only exist after several attempts of social reorganization. It is the people who will collectively decide what that society will be. We are all in the middle of this process of collectively deciding what kind of society will be formed to replace what we have right now. Do we want this society to remain or do we want a new one to replace it? Certain social classes would opt the former while others the latter. We are in the middle of this whole evolution of matter, even this article is part of this process.


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