When we become complacent, we stagnate.
In Mind Over Matter, science writer K.C. Cole expands on the theme of complacency by drawing on biology. The books is a collection of themes for the Los Angeles Times and collected in a book through loosely joined threads. Of biology, Cole says:
The only way to stay in place in the universe is to keep moving. You are always in movement relative to something, whether you can sense it or not. Equilibrium is always dynamic.
In biological systems, neutrality is death. An organism that doesn't constantly put energy into fighting disintegration dies.
“In the end, the biggest risk is not to take any risks at all. In science we find that:
- The opposite of a deep truth can also be true: waves can also be particles, and energy is another form of matter; two mutually exclusive things can be part of the same larger reality
- Every action has a reaction
- Everything is connected
- Things look different in different reference frames
- Rules change in unfamiliar terrain, often in counter-intuitive ways”
Themes include uncertainty, the limitations of measure, fragility, illusion, humility before nature, complacency. I've been long interested in the intersection points between biology and humanism, with the modern equivalent in technology and business.
Mind Over Matter is full of useful morsels and a delightful reading for people who are curious about science and are looking for accessible material.