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Entropy or No Entropy? That Is The Question.

We believe we live in an open world, one that is filled with all kinds of wonderful possibilities. Throughout our entire lifetime parents, teachers, coaches, ministers and celebrities all espouse the notion that we can do anything, become whatever we want, and go anywhere at any time. The sky is the limit. If you take a closer look at their words of wisdom, anything is possible, and then you will be resolutely slapped on your forehead with a cosmic two by four. Nature and human nature both adhere to the principle of entropy: order always degenerates into chaos. And from chaos, nothing is possible.

Entropy is complex. Historically, the idea of entropy emerged from the second law of thermodynamics. Later, entropy found importance in the study of statistical mechanics. Simply stated, in a closed system, energy can only be transferred from an orderly state to a disorderly state; consequently, the higher the amount of disorder, the lower the availability of the system's energy to do useful work. We can consider that if a closed system has high entropy, it has a high degree of chaos or disorder, and it's highly inefficient. 

Perhaps some of my readers understand entropy. Personally, it took me quite some time to grasp the concept of entropy when I studied thermodynamics in college chemistry. As I unfold in my practice of medicine, I've begun to see all of the trappings of entropy in our daily lives. I've realized that the human biological system and its social system are closed systems, not open. Furthermore, after reviewing thousands of patient's Computerized Regulation Thermographs, I have come to the conclusion that entropy and disease are very closely related.

The second law of thermodynamics also states that heat flows from hot to cold, never the opposite (without work). Illness is the disturbance of the body's intrinsic mechanisms that keep cell functions in order while under stress. It is an uphill battle to keep our cells, organelles, organs, and entire body from unfolding into chaos because our natural tendency is to disorganize and give in to chaos. Only twenty per cent of our body's energy is utilized by some sort of physical exertion. Eighty percent is used up in cellular reactions that maintain our physical health. If people don't replenish cellular fuel by eating properly, our cells will most likely become more inefficient and fatigued. Sleep and hormone disturbances also have a negative effect on cell organization and function. Disease of any kind can ultimately manifest profound fatigue.

In social structures, personal relationships are built on communication. Both verbal and non-verbal communications have a tendency to be inaccurate and misleading. Furthermore, all of our personal relationships are closed systems. The second law of thermodynamics applies here too. Without a great amount of maintenance work, personal relationships will degenerate into chaos. There is no escaping it. Life's unfoldments will even dissolve the strongest personal bonds, if energy isn't dedicated to maintaining one's social structure. Relationships get fatigued, just like individuals. Once fatigue sets in, almost without fail, all is assuredly lost.

Recovering from organic and/or psychological disease is a very costly adventure when one considers the energy expenditures one needs to make in order to begin and maintain the healing process. The physician must first properly identify the disturbance, prescribe the appropriate treatment to stop the progression of the disorder and then, if possible, restore lost function. Even if all is done perfectly, nature's tendency is to degenerate over time, so the disease-free state may not last -- especially if the patient has given up their will to stay focused and mindful of their eating habits, supplement intake and social environment in all of its dimensions.

We all have some degree of entropy, some higher than others. Those who use a lot of energy organizing their life have very little energy left to do the creative work innate in our human existence. Those who spend little energy organizing themselves, spend a lot of unfocused energy starting activities, but never finishing them. It's bad on both extremes, middle ground is the healthiest. The same holds true for cellular function on a single cell level.

I suggest you take a long hot bath once and a while and let the benefits of the second law of thermodynamics enrich your life. Chart a new course in order to increase focus slightly and decrease chaos as much as possible, without losing sight of living.

Nature will make sure you don't get too focused, or you will succumb to the fundamentals of entropy. Rome wasn't built in a day!

Doc

Posted by Megan Denney at 12:06 PM
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