Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Biological Clock, Happiness and Nations

I have been trying to construct the complete picture since my last post. I think I'll just put down what I have so far, particularly encouraged by the comments on my previous post.

Happiness describes a personal experience; the perception and even the observation of an event varies among individuals. However, the fact that we all use the same word(happiness) to describe something means that there's something that we feel like expressing, and the reason that would happen is because we believe that others would have the same response (would like to feel happy) and we want others to know about it. This then requires that there is something fundamental that is common amongst individuals and I feel that this common element could be the effect of the circadian clock on our existence. The state that is described by being happy actually allows us to ignore the dictates of the 'clock', which is most probably controlled by the chemical processes of life.

Now, I have argued in a previous post that machines and thus the industrial revolution signifies the beginning of our attempts to control physical time and that we have not yet evolved enough to adapt with this socially. Incidentally, the 10-12 yr kids that I find in the various talent competitions in Indian television are clearly much better adapted than me. Adapting to machines also defines what is developed and what's not. Then, if we consider what it takes to adapt to instruments that gives us control over physical time, I see it as being able to think in the positive direction of the time axis. Incidentally, thinking about history is slow, thinking about the future doesn't have a speed limit. Science fictions are invariably thrilling although they may have many other negative aspects; to watch a period drama on the other hand you (atleast I do) need to create the right ambiance. Therefore, being able to predict the future is not necessary. What counts is, are we spending our time analyzing our history and trying to understand our present or are we trying to look into the future? If I have the fundamentals of my sustenance available I can afford to spend my time to look at the future, which may or may not even be relevant to my own life. If not, I'm forced to dwell on my history and understand my present.

These are characteristics of individuals. In the context of the collective behavior of citizens, leaders have historically played decisive roles, which is quite intuitive. In our modern policy making system, we still need the right people at the top. A much more striking realization is that you can't create a 'flat organization' anyrandomwhere; the organization needs to be comprised of multi-skilled people, for it to work.

I guess we need to define what comprises the positive axis of time to be able to establish that cure and prevention are actually relative terms, which I have to do in another post. But what I meant while writing it in the previous post was the existence of the knowledge of what comprises a prevention in the population; then if we inquire as to who knows about the prevention, we will find atleast one mind that has been thinking ahead, relative to the rest in the population. But everyday life in India is not made so exciting (becasue I'm not in a mood to use negatives today) by subtleties like this. We have localities comprising of people who will give you several flavors of possible preventions within a city.

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