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Expanding Our Now by Harrison H. Owen

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Chapter VChaos and Order

When James Gleick published Chaos (Viking-Penguin, 1987), a number of people, myself included, said, “Wow!” Suddenly a world that defied rational description became describable. Chaotic forces and events, which seem to lie beyond any comprehensible pattern, could be appreciated in their random multiplicity and simultaneously as part of the created order.

Gleick’s narrative of the emergence of chaos theory relates closely to the work of Ilya Prigogene on dissipative structures and self-organizing systems, although curiously enough, Gleick doesn’t seem to recognize the affinity. In any event, Gleick and Prigogene, representing a host of others, firmly placed the notions of chaos/complexity theory and self-organizing ...

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