Once again I am kicking myself for not having read something many years ago and just getting around to it today. This time I'm speaking of Issac Asimov's Foundation.
It is particularly poignant reading the book at this moment as I am becoming the asshole Hari Seldon must have seemed in the story. I don't sense ultimate collapse. Well, let me qualify this all out for those of you who are like I was a week ago - ignorant of the Foundation.
Asimov starts with a principle I too subscribe to which is that small things are unpredictable and large things have more momentum and are thus more predictable. I think of this in terms of mass, energy and information. They all have inertia. Based on this principle, the smartest man of his generation, Hari Selden predicts that all of human civilization, starting with its central imperial planet will inevitably collapse into utter destruction in 500 years. He thus, with his great intuitive and mathematical skills, engineers a scheme to save humanity from itself in the the form of sending 30,000 men of science and their families to a distant world on the edge of the galaxy. This is the Foundation Project. The story moves on from there.
Thus far in the first book of this famous trilogy I am seeing how clever Asimov is in moving his story along the course of the inevitable crises picked by Selden as the large possibilities reduce the options of all protagonists to zero. No matter what the individual actors do, the large events have a certain scientific predestination. And yes he actually invokes matters of science as religion (which I have called 'scientism' here at Cobb) and all of the gnarley implications of predestination.
As part of my own Stoicism and what has been revealed to me through my Peasant Theory, I find myself uniquely aligned with what Asimov was on about. (and I continue) especially as I am becoming the asshole Hari Seldon must have seemed in the story- in particular because I am completely without tears and exclamations at the recent murders in Connecticut. What seems funny to me at the moment is to juxtapose this madness with the madness of Benghazi. Perhaps the perpetrator was outraged at some tasteless parody video on YouTube. I have gotten on the nerves of several associates online because I don't believe that anything should be attempted on matters of gun control and in fact believe that nothing will be done, because to be outraged at the death of these children in particular and consequently impelled to action implies precisely the lack of depth and perception required to undertake such a task.
People don't suddenly become intelligent and capable of proper judgment when it comes to these matters, there's too much inertia. To attach emotionally to the subject (misperceived as one of gun control) is to implicate oneself as incompetent.
At any rate, that's my cold-eyed analysis for today, and I'll be damned for it.