Quantavoluting Fugue, by William C. Mullen

Clockwise from top left: Heraclitus (Raphael - Vatican Stanze) - Nietzsche (author unknown), Stephen Wolfram (Encefalus), Alfred de Grazia.
Go To: Biography of William C. Mullen
See also: William C. Mullen's paper at the 2008 Paris Conference on Quantavolution

Original Cast (in the original languages)

Heraclitus: Stavros Papamarinopoulos
Nietzsche: Gunnar Heinsohn
Al de Grazia: Scott Mainwaring
Stephen Wolfram: Richard Stern
Author's Ensemble Voice: William C. Mullen

Quantavoluting Fugue

1. HerNieDeg               
We approach the real through our senses- by learning to think through them.  As we approach closer, our senses give us more and more evidence of sudden and massive system changes.  Even nearby, in space and time.  One such quantavolution may have been the change that first led us to think.

Heraclitus, DK 55:
Anything seen, heard, learned - that I especially honor.               

Nietzsche, TI "Reason in Philosophy" §3:
Today we possess science precisely to the extent to which we have made the decision for ourselves to accept the witness of the senses - to the extent to which we keep sharpening them, arming them, learning to think them through. Everything else is a miscarriage and a not-yet-science- which is to say, metaphysics, theology, psychology, epistemology.  - Or merely formal science, a semiotic doctrine: logic, for instance, and that applied logic which is called mathematics. Reality is not to be confronted in them at all, not even as a problem - any more than the question of what kind of value in general a semiotic convention such as logic possesses.

De Grazia, QC:
The theory of Quantavolution deals with the behavior of substances of the real world so far as one can sense them.

2. HerDegWol
Thinking learned through the senses loves to predict what the sensed things will do.  And as far into the future as possible.  Sometimes that is not very far.  From even simple things we see every day, and behaving according to simple rules, there can emerge behavior- and sometimes suddenly- so complex we cannot reduce it to a computational formula with predictive power.  Maybe we will be able to later.  In many cases later has never arrived.

Heraclitus, DK 72:
Most people are at odds with what they spend the most time with, and things they comes across every day seem strange to them.

De Grazia, CC 257:
…miracles are everywhere, in a true sense. Before it happens, your next sight- whatever you next see when you lift your eyes- is a miracle. Its every detail could never have been predicted.
Still, surprisingly, after you see it, a full report can demonstrate that the view was no miracle: it was ordinary….  every few moments will bring a miracle; afterwards, every miracle can be told. If it were a miracle, it couldn't be told.

Wolfram, NKS 819:
…most of this book is concerned precisely with all the interesting behavior that can emerge even if one knows the rules for a system.
… if computational irreducibility is present, then.. all sorts of information about the behavior of a system … can only be found from its rules by doing an irreducibly large amount of computational work.

3. WolDegHer
We want, too, to look as far back into the past as possible, and say something real about things we see there.  Sometimes that, too, is not very far.  We want to tell stories about them that give them meaning, to give an account of them that is true.  Always partial meaning and partial truth, since our senses have never arrived at any beginning.

Wolfram, NKS 771:
… there really can… be an almost exponential difference in the amount of computational effort needed to find the behavior of a system with given particular initial conditions, and to solve the inverse problem of determining which if any initial conditions yield particular behavior.               
…even given a particular initial condition it can require an irreducible amount of computational work to find the outcome after a given number of steps of evolution.

De Grazia, DS 134:
The main theories of astronomy are as remote from experience as to be spooky. Astronomers walk on a tightrope between science and religion, depending upon a few principles that are empirically formulated to keep the field aloft as a science. The most that astronomers can say empirically is that much of the universe, including fortunately most of the solar system, exhibits some large uniformities of behavior. As soon as they retroject or project by thousands of years they become vulnerable, that is, unbelievable.

Heraclitus, DK 105:
Homer gave an account of the heavenly bodies.  DK 38: [Thales] was the first to give an account of the heavenly  bodies. 

4. NieHerDeg
We often behave badly when claiming to give a true account of something gravely important about the past or the future.  Make a claim about phenomena at one scale of space or time, and someone else may show it to be false, or trivial, at another scale.  Passions are easily mobilized here- just as we were trying to agree on an account we could hold in common.

Nietzsche, TSZ 38:
[The scholars and the scientists] keep a sharp eye on one another, and are not the most trustful of each other. Inventive in little bits of cleverness, they wait for those whose knowledge walks on lame feet.  They wait like spiders.
I saw them all the time preparing poison with precaution; and they were always putting glass gloves on their fingers to do so.
They also know how to play with loaded dice; and I found them playing so eagerly that they broke out in a sweat.

Heraclitus, DK 47:
Let us not make random conjectures about the most important matters.

De Grazia, CC 33:
Everything is connected with everything else: the most ancient people thought so, and modern scientific philosophy agrees….  Yet the mind scuttles for its own hole. It does not want to be part of the infinite interconnected web of reality. It makes isolates of all other persons. It studies the small apart from the large. It stretches out time endlessly so that things do not happen together.

5. DegHerWol
Our thinking so enlists that highest of passions, pride, that we suppose that the universe might just exist for the sake of thinkers like us.  This even though we are always accusing each other of being downright false, or wrong.  Can we really think through all possible kinds of thinking in the universe, and sort them out into true and false, or right and wrong?

De Grazia, QC:
Such a global change of perspective requires a search for new evidence, a reformulation of old evidence, a reconsideration of anomalies, changes in meanings of words and phrases, explorations of etymologies of words and concepts, and a reexamination of assumptions, often when they are so accepted as to be trite and so trite as to be ignored- removed, indeed, from our very cognitive structures.

Heraclitus, DK 18:
If you have no hope, you will not find the unhoped-for, since it is not to be tracked down, and no path leads there.

Wolfram, NKS 1027:
It is sometimes argued that the reason our universe has the characteristics it does is because otherwise an intelligence such as us could not have arisen to observe it. But to apply such an argument one must among other things assume that we can imagine all the ways in which intelligence could conceivably operate.

6. HerWolDeg
Anything out there as complex as our own minds must be, we think, at the very least alive.  Yet even as computers increase exponentially our minds' powers, again and again we come up against systems so complex we cannot reduce them to predictive formulas.  The weather has a mind of is own.  Is the weather alive?  Are our computers alive?

Heraclitus, 67:
God is day and night, winter and summer, war and peace, satiety and famine, and changes like fire, which, when mingled with spices, is named according to the bouquet of each.

Wolfram, NKS 844-5:
…there are certainly many systems in nature whose behavior is complex enough that we often describe it in human terms. And indeed in early human thinking it is very common to encounter the idea of animism: that systems with complex behavior in nature must be driven by the same kind of essential spirit as humans.
But for thousands of years this has been seen as naive and counter to progress in science. Yet now essentially this idea- viewed in computational terms through the discoveries in this book- emerges as crucial…  it is the computational equivalence of us as observers to the systems in nature that we observe that makes these systems seem to us so complex and unpredictable.

De Grazia,  DS 152:
The simplicity and complexity of things are subjectively perceived or operationally invented. Things in themselves cannot be defined as absolutely simple or complex. The same is true of the concepts of space (size), time, past, and future. The same is true of "life" or "animism." It is subjective percept or operational invention, not defined other than by the human mind.

7. DegHerNie
Particularly disturbing is the unpredictable behavior out there that is also sudden and massive.  It reminds us of war, where the role of the uncontrollable, of randomness, is jacked up, and the stakes are great.  But why should every quantavolution be deemed bad in advance?  We certainly deem good the one that first led us to think.

De Grazia, CC 4-5:
Much that we admire and respect in this world, including our very being as humans, must logically be thought of as the "good" side of the catastrophes of which we speak. Humanity, art, institutions and science are products of the most ancient catastrophes. So, again, the words "quantavolution" and "revolution" may be preferable, or at least useful to remember, in connection with the wholly negative word "catastrophe".
Heraclitus, DK 53:
War is father of all and king of all: some he shows as gods, others as men; some he makes slaves, others free.

Nietzsche, TI "Aphorisms and Arrows" §8:
Out of life's school of war: what does not kill me makes me stronger.

8. DegNieHer
The quantavoluting forces that led us to think were no doubt beautiful before they were terrible.  And sometimes, no doubt, while they were terrible.  Like fire.  Or war.  And a terrible thing about beauty is that it can make us wish it to last forever.  Or believe that it must last forever.

De Grazia, CC 258:
The high energy forces that play upon the world collapse the time-scales of natural history and simultaneously withdraw the intellectual need for long draughts of time to explain the world. High energy forces make out of natural history a set of exponential curves resembling very old human theories that universal history runs in cycles.

Nietzsche, TSZ 3.16:
Oh, how could I not lust after Eternity? Lust for the marriage-ring of rings, - the ring of recurrence?

Heraclitus, DK 30:  This cosmos, one and the same for all, no god nor man made, but it always was, and is, and will be, an ever-living fire, measured in its self-kindling and measured in its self-extinguishing. 

9. WolHerDeg
This terrible beauty, this beautiful terror, can blaze forth suddenly, then start to recede, or hide.  Suddenly, or slowly.  Fortunately for us, but also frustratingly.  How is it possible we could lose knowledge of something so gravely beautiful at the very heart of nature?

Wolfram, NKS 1196:
The Principle of Computational Equivalence has implications for many issues long discussed in the field of philosophy. Most important are probably those in epistemology (theory of knowledge). In the past, it has usually been assumed that if we could only build up in our minds an adequate model of the world, then we would immediately know whatever we want about the world. But the Principle of Computational Equivalence now implies that even given a model it may be irreducibly difficult to work out its consequences. In effect, computational irreducibility introduces a new kind of limit to knowledge.

Heraclitus, DK 123:
Nature loves to hide.

De Grazia, CC 29:
"Nature" likes ambiguity. The historical record of nature is dim, irregular, and requires assumptions that are logically vulnerable in interpreting it. The parties might be forced to come to terms if "nature" offered itself as arbitrator. But time after time, it refuses to arbitrate.

10. WolDegNie
We want the beauty at the heart of nature to consist of laws that govern an order in it.  And we want to give an account of those laws.  And we want the account to be simple.  These are the desires of a lover.  A lover does not always get what he wants.

Wolfram, NKS 828:
…one of the main discoveries of this book is that in fact great complexity can arise even in systems with extremely simple underlying rules…
… the question then remains why when human intelligence is involved it tends to create artifacts that look much simpler than objects that just appear in nature. And I believe the basic answer to this has to do with the fact that when we as humans set up artifacts we usually need to be able to foresee what they will do- for otherwise we have no way to tell whether they will achieve the purposes we want.
Yet nature presumably operates under no such constraint.

De Grazia, HS I 80:
The phrase: "To illustrate the presence and wisdom of God in the natural and moral world" meant to the naturalist, he [Goldschmidt the geneticist] declared, "the demonstration of law and order in his chosen field." This view is a common amnesiac sublimation of the characters of the gods Yahweh, Shiva, Zeus, and Jupiter, spreaders of chaos and lightning-like destroyers of the order of Mother Earth and Mother Nature.

Nietzsche, BGE 1.22:
You physicists speak so proudly…  "Hurrah for natural law!" - is it not so? … that is interpretation, not text; and somebody might come along, who, with opposite intentions and interpretative skills, could read out of the same "Nature," and considering the same phenomena, precisely the tyrannically reckless and relentless enforcement of the claims of power-an interpreter who should so place the unexceptionalness and unconditionalness of all "Will to Power" before your eyes, that almost every word, even the word "tyranny", would eventually seem inappropriate, or seem like a weakening and cushioning metaphor-would seem too human; and who should, nevertheless, end by asserting the same about this world as you do, namely, that it has a "necessary" and "calculable" course, not, however, because laws govern it, but because they are absolutely lacking, and because every power effects its ultimate consequences every instant.               

11. HerDegNie
Frustrated love can drive a man mad.  As can fear, or frustrated sex.  Will the madman go on a rampage, or fall into a frenzy?  Construct meticulous rules for a private rite?  Long to die, or take his own life?  What will a madman end up worshipping?  We are this frustrated madman.  These grave questions are about us.

Heraclitus, DK15:
If it were not in honor of Dionysus that they walk in procession and sing a hymn to the shameful genitals,  they would be acting most shamelessly. Death and Dionysus are one- the god for whom they act like madmen, and celebrate festivals of frenzy.

De Grazia, HS I 72:
Notable, too, is the association of fear, aggressiveness, and sexuality in variations of the endocrinal system. It is then reasonable to suppose, for instance, that sexuality is determined more by the stresses of the quantavolutionary period than by the aboriginal oedipal complex or simple sexual drives…. The types of social imprinting imposed upon the first generations of mankind and all generations since then were, so far as we can tell, the same; delusory, symbolic, obsessional, and aggressive; these are typical products of endocrinal excesses.

Nietzsche, BGE 3. 55:
…during the moral epoch of mankind, one sacrificed to one's god the strongest instincts one possessed, one's "nature".  This festal joy shines in the cruel glances of the ascetic, of the fanatically "anti-natural". Finally, what was there left to sacrifice? Didn't one in the end, for once, have to sacrifice everything comforting, holy, healing, all hope, all faith in hidden harmony, in future blessedness and justice? Didn't one have to sacrifice God himself, and, out of cruelty to oneself, to worship stone, stupidity, gravity, fate, nothingness?

12. DegHerNie
We are mad, or foolish, or perhaps just neotenous- we never grow up.  A child's will to play a game whose rules he has made up can be nasty to behold.  Or enchanting.  Jack the Ripper.  Or Mozart.

De Grazia, HS:
The world is as will…  It is a delusional creation of man's poly-ego confederation playing with its kaleidoscope. This game, with its dexterity and intensity, put all other animals to shame. And individual men came to be distinguished infinitely, in their applications of will, by the way their particular minds shook their kaleidoscopes. So that one man's iron will was to win a battle, another's to win a certain mate, another's to gather money, another's to die, another's to conquer will itself by willing nothingness.

Heraclitus,  52:
Time is a child playing backgammon.  The sovereignty is a child's.

Nietzsche, TSZ 1.1:
The child is innocence, and oblivion, a new beginning, a game, a wheel that rolls on its own, a first movement, a holy Yes.
Yes, for the game of creating, my brothers, it takes a holy Yes: its own will is what the mind now wills, its own world is what the man lost to the world wins.

13. HerNieDeg
At least in his little game the child is in control.  He controls the terrible things he does not want to remember but had better not forget.  One day, he invites others to play with him, say, play ball with him.  Or bullies them into it.  Soon he is popular or powerful.  His ball game takes over a whole culture.  It can end in decapitation, or in the innocent and happy roar of the summer crowd.

Heraclitus, DK 14:
As for the secret rites men deem traditional- abominable is the manner in which they are initiated into the secrets.

Nietzsche, GM, Second Essay §3:
One burns something in so that it stays in the memory. Only something which never ceases to cause pain stays in the memory"- that is a leading principle of the most ancient (and unhappily the longest-standing) psychology on earth…. When man considered it necessary to make a memory for himself, he could never do without blood, martyrs, sacrifices- the most terrible sacrifices and pledges (among them the sacrifice of the first born), the most repulsive mutilations (for example, castration), the cruelest forms of ritual in all the religious cults (and all religions are in their deepest foundations systems of cruelty).  All such things originate in the instinct which discovered in pain the most powerful means of helping mnemonics.

De Grazia, HS I 99:
The shocks are so traumatic that the victims adopt response behaviors that become patterned as the essence of human nature. The traumatized catastrophical survivors retain the memories, but distort and use them in ways that are typically human. Most importantly, they devise in the very process of their own creation the social means of perpetuating their own changed mentalities and behavior… The memorial generations transmit and adapt new traumatic and 'normal' tribulations to the fixated human nature.

14. DegNieHer
Along with the ball game will come a story- about something that we may not want to remember but that we must not forget.  And the story can always be lightened up, as the neotenous tend to do.  Just as in dreams sometimes.  Tonalities, affects, can shift inside us at night, like bits of glass in a kaleidoscope.  The god slew the comet in the sky.  The hero slew the dragon on the ground.  The hero killed some other man who challenged him on the field.  The boys played ball.

De Grazia, HS I 116:
In the public language that ultimately developed were contained clusters of words that grew into creation stories, which purport to describe the days of creation of the world and of humanity. We expect the stories to be heavily veiled accounts of a true history, much like dreams that are internally distorted and censored but nevertheless lend themselves to scientific interpretation up to a degree….          the stories diverge. Running them together is like reciting a stream of dreams, all apparently referring to a single theme. This earliest extant public language is just what we would expect it to be, and what dreams are like, too, and what the world often appears like to persons suffering from mental illness. They hold a truth which can be deciphered.
Nietzsche, BGE 193:
Quidquid luce fuit, tenebris agit : but also the other way round. What we experience in dreams, provided we experience it often, belongs, finally, just as much to the general economy of our soul as anything "actually" experienced.  On account of it we are richer or poorer, we have one need more or less, and in the end, in broad daylight, and even in the cheeriest moments of our waking life, we are ruled to some degree by the habits of our dreams.

Heraclitus, DK 26:
A man in the night kindles a light for himself because his sight has been extinguished.  And in his living, he kindles the dead when he sleeps, and when awake he kindles the sleeping.

15. HerDegNie
And yes, lest we forget that it is all very serious, some blood needs to be shed from time to time.  Blood that will silence the victims as it ebbs out at the sacrifice, and leave the rest a little clearer, for the moment, about who they are talking to.  To the deity, of course, and to each other.  Not just to the mud in the field where each of them keeps slipping up.

Nietzsche, GM, Second Essay §6:
It is in the laws of obligation that the world of the moral concepts "guilt," "conscience," "duty," and "sanctity of duty" has its origin-its beginning, like the beginning of everything great on earth, was soaked, thoroughly and for a long time, with blood.

Heraclitus, DK 5:
Defiled by blood, they purify themselves with blood- as if when you stepped into mud you were to wash yourself with mud.  A man would be thought mad if anyone were to see him doing that. And they pray to these statues of theirs, like someone talking to houses- clueless as to who these gods and heroes really are.

De Grazia, HS I 104:
The alter-egos displace terror onto other people and the threatening natural forces. The primordial being does not know whether he is "talking to himself" or "talking to others." Self-punishment and self-mutilation are found to be ineffective but persist in efforts "to unite the soul."

16. NieHerDeg
One man will stand up in his mud and subjugate it.  He will call the field a kingdom, and say it is ruled by a god.  And he will believe it, and others will come to believe it- by force, or charm.  "If the king wants to be a god, why let him be a god."  And field after field, and kingdom after kingdom, must fall to him.  Until he falls.

Nietzsche, BGE 156:
Madness in individuals is rare - but in groups, parties, nations, and epochs it is the rule.

Heraclitus, DK 2:
One must follow the public language that is held in common; but although the account of the universe is common to all, most people live as if they had a private understanding of their own.

De Grazia, HS I 178:
The schizoids, and especially certain schizophrenes, are religiously and politically dominant. With their obsessions, suspicious hyperawareness, penchant for symbolism, and their megalomania they control the world. That is, they try to control it; but the world is, by their own definition, uncontrollable. Homo sapiens schizotypus defines 'control, ' and is insatiably anxious for control.

17. HerDegNie
Surely mankind is not to be stuck in its mud forever.  Surely we can hope for something higher than this version of man we have seen so far.  What is to prevent us from hoping for such a thing?  From willing it?  From turning towards something more admirable, more divine, than we have yet guessed at?

Heraclitus, DK 18:
If you have no hope you will not find the unhoped-for, since it is not to be tracked down, and no path leads there.

De Grazia, DS 1:
Religion is ultimately hope, and humans live on hope. So goes, in other words, much of my story. But to my surprise, I have discovered that there is really something to hope for. The two parts of my book, going from theomachy to theotropy, pursue a way from despair to new hope.

Nietzsche, TSZ 10:_
Let your love for live be love for your highest hope:  and your highest hope be the highest thought of life!
But as for your highest thought, you shall let it come as a command from me- and it is this:  man is something that shall be surpassed.

18. DegHerNie
Naturally our language is not yet adequate to such hopes and guesses.  Shall we call them gods, or supermen, or angels?  Or just leave it to them to teach us their names?

De Grazia, DS 153:
There should exist planets or complexes where beings of much greater intelligence and competence than ourselves exist. There must be a range of such superior intelligences from superman to gods.

Heraclitus, DK 83:
The wisest of men appears like an ape in comparison with a god. 

Nietzsche,  TSZ 22:
"All the gods are dead: now it is our will that the superman live."- At the great noon let this be the last thing we will! -
Thus spoke Zarathustra.

19. WolHerDeg
Who knows how much they have accomplished so far?  Who knows how promising they deem us- or would, if they knew us?  Suppose they are as swift as thought, and limitless as intelligence.  And suppose they are sociable.

Wolfram, NKS 1191:
From the point of view of traditional thinking about intelligence in the universe it might seem like an extremely bizarre possibility that perhaps intelligence could exist at a very small scale, and in effect have spread throughout the universe, building as an artifact everything we see. But at least with a broad interpretation of intelligence this is at some level exactly what the Principle of Computational Equivalence suggests has actually happened. For it implies that even at the smallest scales the laws of physics will show the same computational sophistication that we normally associate with intelligence. So in some sense this supports the theological notion that there might be a kind of intelligence that permeates our universe.

Heraclitus, DK 32:
One Being alone is wise, and is willing and unwilling to be called by the name of Zeus.

De Grazia, DS 158-9:
But how have we defined a god that gods should be so numerous? By god is meant a coordinated divine activity such that 1) it can endure or reproduce or replicate itself indefinitely under highly varying ambient conditions, that 2) it can act so as to expand communication pathways and thus its influence at an exponentially increasing rate, that 3) its proven scope and domain of intervention is extensive  within  a galaxy or is multigalactic, and contains no inherent limits, that 4) it provably (in human terms) acts so as to increase the aptitude and appropriate behaviors of the most promising existences (including humans) with the end in mind of reducing entropy and establishing theotropy as the dominating principle of the universe.

20. WolHerDeg
Suppose, still, these beings are intelligent in ways we cannot yet recognize.  And suppose there are unlimited forms of intelligence- no computational formula ever arrives to determine a limit.  Why should that put a stop to the growing joy of seeing more and more kinds of intelligence in more and more parts of the universe?

Heraclitus, DK 107:
Eyes and ears are bad witnesses for people who have minds that do not know the language.

De Grazia, DS 162-3:
The entropy and theotropy can co-exist: they do so under our eyes. It may appear that the theotropic is declining, but this may be false. Our narrow perspective may be giving false measures, and we are better conditioned to detect entropy than theotropy. Especially with our present confidence in materialism, that is, our indifference to theotropy and our desire to emulate the ideal instinctive animal, we may be today underestimating theotropy.

Wolfram, NKS 1027:
It is sometimes argued that the reason our universe has the characteristics it does is because otherwise an intelligence such as us could not have arisen to observe it. But to apply such an argument one must among other things assume that we can imagine all the ways in which intelligence could conceivably operate.

21. DegHerNie
We seem to be surrounded by a tragic universe, entropic, and to be standing on a tragic earth, vulnerable.  And yet at this very moment our intelligence, merged with our computers, is expanding exponentially.  This is a joyous feeling of heightened life.  Why should it not want to go on and on forever?

De Grazia, DS 161-2:
Let us look once again at the traits of the divine bodies. They excel in expansiveness, in sensitivity to domains of potential theotropic existence, and in promoting theotropism (countering entropy). It is this last that determines outcomes. The theotropism or divinity that competes most effectively to eliminate entropy will merge with other divinities to the degree that they operate in the same way. It is to their interest to behave in this way. In the end it will be the constructive principle of the universe that will influence and absorb all potential theotropy in the universe. Creation will triumph over destruction. This is the aim of the universe, the greatest of natural laws, and is the ultimate good.

Heraclitus, DK 41:
There is one wisdom, to understand how a single thought steers everything through everything.               

Nietzsche, TSZ 59:
The world is deep,
And deeper than the day had thought.
Deep is its grief.
Joy- deeper than heart's pain.
Grief says: Pass away!
But all joy wants eternity-,                               
Wants deep, deep eternity.

22. DegHerWol
If change is everywhere, then so too is growing complexity.  Is the universe growing more complex?  Will that question ever be formally decidable?  And don't these uncertainties suggest a kind of freedom?  Suppose the motions of our minds are completely determined, and yet in so complex a fashion that the day never arrives when we feel anything other than free.  And if we rejoice in our own freedom, then why not in that of other systems at least as complex as we are- equivalently determined, and equivalently free?

De Grazia, DS 36:
…it may be of the nature of the world to extend itself indefinitely in an infinity of forms occupying time and space or a presently unimaginable dimension. Hence the gods as creators are unnecessary. One may slide into a counter-assertion to prove their existence: that the gods are in the principle of change, there being no ultimate reason for change other than the will of a demiurge, who may be Aristotle's "unmoved mover," or Heraclitus' inherent changefulness of all things.

Heraclitus,  DK 12:
Over those who step into the same rivers, perpetually different waters flow.

Wolfram, NKS 752:
…it has always seemed quite implausible that any real unpredictability could arise in a system that just follows definite underlying rules.
And so to explain the behavior that we as humans exhibit it has often been assumed that there must be something fundamentally more going on- and perhaps something unique to humans.
In the past the most common belief has been that there must be some form of external influence from fate- associated perhaps with the intervention of a supernatural being or perhaps with configurations of celestial bodies. And in more recent times sensitivity to initial conditions and quantum randomness have been proposed as more appropriate scientific explanations.
…nothing like this is actually needed. For as we have seen many times in this book even systems with quite simple and definite underlying rules can produce behavior so complex that it seems free of obvious rules.

23. NieDegHer
Let us learn to dance around the fire on the tragic earth- a dance free of the old gods of fear.  It will be a dance that stands open to new gods.  And whatever else they may be, they will not be such as to make us afraid.

Nietzsche, TSZ 3:
Alas, my brothers, that god I made was man's work and man's madness, like all the gods!
He was a man, and only a poor fragment of a man and an 'I'. Out of my own ashes and glow it came unto me, this ghost.  It certainly did not come to me from the beyond!
What happened, my brothers? I surpassed myself, the man of sorrows, I carried my own ashes to the mountain, I found myself a brighter flame.  And look!  The ghost retreated from me!

De Grazia, CC258:
…natural history may have a direction, rather than simply repeating itself. By direction is meant that the periods of the history, besides their obvious unique and eccentric qualities, may be stages of a process with an end. What is left now, as an inheritance, of a cosmic system, of the air, of the land, and of mind, may be all that we shall have to work with for a long time to come.
Humankind has not tested its inheritance fully, yet. It does not know yet what it is capable of becoming. So we are learning to dance upon the hot coals of history, daring that the coals will not flare up before the dance is learned.

Heraclitus, DK 90:
All things are exchangeable for fire, and fire for all things, as goods are for gold, and gold for goods.

24. DegNieHer
It will be a dance of minds freed from fear of the lightning that brought fire to the earth.  A dance of hearts that swell as intelligence expands.  Lightning and earth and mind are united in this dance.  Hearts lift and swell.

De Grazia, DS 99:
[Another] cause of theotropy is the human's need to expand his sphere of inquiry.  One cannot rest where one is; one most forever seek to expand-in effect, then, to divinize oneself.  No ending in defeat is allowable, no surrender to entropy.  Theotropy, as much or more than entropy, is the rule of the universe.

Nietzsche, TSZ Prologue 3:
But where is the lightning to lick you with its tongue? Where is the frenzy with which you have to be inoculated?
Look, I teach you the superman: he is this lightning, he is this frenzy!

Heraclitus,  DK 45:
  You would not find the boundaries of mind even if, as you proceeded, you went down every path - so deep is the measure, so endless the story of it.

Code Letters and Bibliography

At the end of each bibliographical entry is a URL for a website at which the complete text in the original language can be found.

                H = Heraclitus

DK  Diels, Hermann, and Kranz, Walther.  1952.  Die Fragmente der Vorsokratiker, 6th                ed.  Berlin.  Numbers following DK are entries under "Heraclitus b: ipsissima                verba, 'exact words', sometimes also termed 'fragments'".  For an online                text following the Diels-Kranz numbering, in Greek with translations into French and English, go to

                N = Nietzsche

TSZ                Nietzsche, Friedrich. 1883-1891.  Also sprach Zarathustra.  [Thus Spoke Zarathustra].

BGE                Nietzsche, Friedrich.  1886.  Jenseits von Gut und Böse [Beyond Good and Evil].

GM                Nietzsche, Friedrich.  1887.  Zur Genealogie der Moral [On the Genealogy of                Morals].

TI                Nietzsche, Friedrich.  1896.  Götzendämmerung [Twilight of the Idols, written                1888].

                D = deGrazia

CC                  DeGrazia, Alfred.  1981.  Chaos and Creation: An Introduction to Quantavolution in Human and Natural History.  Metron Publications.

HS I DeGrazia, Alfred.  1983a.  Homo Schizo I: Human and Cultural Hologensis.                Metron Publications.

DS                DeGrazia, Alfred.  1983b.  The Divine Succession: A Science of Gods Old and                New.  Metron Publications.

                Online only:
QC                De Grazia. QUANTAVOLUTION AND CATASTROPHE: Introduction to the Series. 

                W = Wolfram, Stephen

NKS  Wolfram, Stephen.  2002.  A New Kind of Science.  Wolfram Media, Inc.
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