Monday, May 21, 2012

The Edge of Chaos

"Complex systems tend to locate themselves at a place we call "the edge of chaos". We imagine the edge of chaos as a place where there is enough innovation to keep a living system vibrant, and enough stability to keep it from collapsing into anarchy."
-Michael Crichton, The Lost World

So I caught up with a bunch of my former work colleagues over the weekend. It seems that there's another massive wave of attrition going on. Those were good, dependable people, but it's not surprising that what happened finally broke their will after three years worth of keeping up with the crap and hoping for change.

I remember a professor of mine once said something like justice is being given every person what is due to them. If that's the case then people, as a whole, are being severely shortchanged most of the time. It sucks that accomplishments nowadays are only considered useful if there are numbers to back them up. It's sad that nobody really knows or cares about what has been sacrificed to provide those numbers, save for the people at the bottom of the heap.

The thing is that in many cases we lose the balance we have carefully tried to maintain over time. It's difficult to act and make choices when there are so many restrictions in place and so many metrics to fulfill, while at the same time we are asked to provide more and more. These are times when people are forced to place a value on things and more often than not, they have to drop something to keep everything important - their values, their beliefs, their dreams, their responsibilities - in line.

I will forever be a proponent of free will. It feels like the world restricts our choices nowadays, especially in these times when making a living is becoming increasingly difficult. People tend to forget that there is always the option of walking away.

Sometimes it's useful to just lean back so we could see that something will just not work out and hence we should cut our losses. In the long run, it would probably be good for everyone involved. Sometimes it's better to find something else that we know we want to do, instead of giving a half-assed effort on something we hate doing.

They say freedom has its responsibilities. We could probably argue the inverse, that for every responsibility we take on, we should be granted the freedom it entails. After all, wouldn't that be justice?

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