The Darkest Timeline

Ultraculture’s Jason Louv has described the Trump election outcome as like living in “the darkest timeline.”

 

I had similar feelings after watching the 2000 dotcom crisis unfold in real-time; after Bush v Gore in 2000; and after the September 11 terrorist attacks. I spent much of 2002-04 in the Strategic Foresight program at Swinburne University writing retrospectives and looking for sources of hope.

 

The best way to deal with “the darkest timeline” scenario is to create a focal point and attempt to move to adjacent possibility-spaces. This requires an internal locus of control, creativity, and being able to identify causal pathways: necessary and sufficient conditions. Yet it is difficult in the face of chaotic events or overwhelming structural forces. A candle in the dark will eventually dim and burn itself out.

14th February 2012: Chaos Theory

 

Chaos theory and the complexity sciences have come up in several recent discussions. In one exchange, I found Peter J. Carroll‘s writings to be ill-defined and unclear. In another exchange, different underlying epistemologies were discussed. Richard Metzger and Jason Louv were influenced by contemporary chaos magic: to do rituals and to create sigils in the tradition of Austin Osman Spare. I went in a different direction: studying chaos theory (James Gleick; Edward Lorenz; Benoit Mandelbrot; and others); then reading about how such models can affect your life (e.g. Steven Strogatz’s Sync or Albert-László Barabási’s Linked); and more recently, looking at dynamical systems, mathematics and simulation modelling in the context of financial markets. For me, contemporary chaos magic is but a shadow of the scientific vistas of chaos theory and the complexity sciences.