2010.07.05 01:00 - Symbiosis

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    The Guardian for this meeting was Darren Islar. The comments are by Darren Islar.

    Darren Islar: hey Cal :)
    Calvino Rabeni: Darren, Hello :)
    Calvino Rabeni: Hello Jaime
    Calvino Rabeni: This place is the PlayAsBeing pavilion
    Jaime Kungfu: Hello
    Calvino Rabeni: There are 4 meetings here per day
    Jaime Kungfu: What are you guys talking about?
    Calvino Rabeni: Nothing yet
    Jaime Kungfu: When does the meeting start?
    Calvino Rabeni: I had a regular session earlier - I host a slot from 7pm Sunday
    Calvino Rabeni: THis one started at 1AM
    Jaime Kungfu: ok
    Calvino Rabeni: but no one showed yet
    Jaime Kungfu: It's 4:30AM my time
    Jaime Kungfu: cool
    Calvino Rabeni: Did I ever show you around this sim, Jaime?
    Jaime Kungfu: Maybe, but not for a long time
    Calvino Rabeni: One thing to know - visitors here
    Calvino Rabeni: informed that the chat is recorded and published on our web site
    Calvino Rabeni: kind of like live-blogging
    Jaime Kungfu: good to know, thanks
    Calvino Rabeni: so the procedure is to ask for informed consent
    Jaime Kungfu: ok, my consent is informed
    Calvino Rabeni: and if it isn't given, we strike out their name from the session log
    Calvino Rabeni: OK, thanks
    Darren Islar: hi Zal
    Zaldaan Sirnah: :}
    Darren Islar: Jamie if you would like to sit down.......
    Jaime Kungfu: thank you
    Darren Islar: Jaime is there something you would like to talk about
    Darren Islar: or maybe you have questios
    Jaime Kungfu: well, since I'm a newcomer, what are the usual topics?
    Calvino Rabeni: Hmm, well ... the idea is that we do a short awareness meditation every 15 minutes for 90 seconds here
    Calvino Rabeni: that establishes a container of sorts
    Calvino Rabeni: but the *content* is open-ended
    Darren Islar: a lot of topics go
    Jaime Kungfu: ok
    Calvino Rabeni: That said, there are a lot of topics about "what to do with awareness"
    Calvino Rabeni: or maybe some kind of way of lifting various spiritual or philosophical topics outside their traditional contexts
    Jaime Kungfu: I'm aware that it's beginning to get light outside
    Darren Islar: or 'how to drop'
    Calvino Rabeni: into the one of - normal life
    Jaime Kungfu: being aware of the dawn is a great experience, but one that I don't usually do
    Calvino Rabeni: same with me,
    Calvino Rabeni: The birds do a certain routine about at that time
    Calvino Rabeni: then they settle down
    Jaime Kungfu: the dawn chorus, oh yes
    Calvino Rabeni: maybe they talk while it is still too dark to go to work
    Calvino Rabeni: Have you ever read essays by the science writer Lynn Margulis?
    Jaime Kungfu: Yes, the five kingdoms
    Jaime Kungfu: I read that book a while ago
    Calvino Rabeni: I'd heard of her work, but only recently learned that she'd been married to Carl Sagan
    Jaime Kungfu: huh, I didn't realize that
    Jaime Kungfu: she was very influential
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes, and they have a scientist son also
    Calvino Rabeni: Very influential in evolutionary genetics
    Jaime Kungfu: back to the sixties, I think
    Calvino Rabeni: and in a view of life that treats symbiosis as a main idea
    Jaime Kungfu: one of those ideas that seems obvious now, but was no doubt a real accomplishment to articulate
    Calvino Rabeni: She originated the theory that the eukariotic cell originated as a symbiotic combination of simpler microbes
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes, it was against the grain
    Calvino Rabeni: I think that's an accepted theory now
    Jaime Kungfu: right, the idea that mitchondria were originally separate organisms
    Jaime Kungfu: and chloroplasts
    Calvino Rabeni: Her currently unaccepted theory, says the same thing, about the wiggly tail of many microbes
    Calvino Rabeni: that the tail itself, was a separate organism
    Jaime Kungfu: makes sense to me
    Calvino Rabeni: It is a very unusual joint - kind of a rotating motor
    Calvino Rabeni: the only such structure in nature
    Jaime Kungfu: pretty cool
    Calvino Rabeni: So if you have a theory of nature that gives symbiosis and communication a foundational place
    Calvino Rabeni: then you get essentially the same results, but with a whole different background attitude
    Calvino Rabeni: with many side effects as a paradigm
    Calvino Rabeni: such as - maybe humans didn't "invent" language
    Calvino Rabeni: and maybe language isn't intrinsically constituted by "words" and concepts
    Calvino Rabeni: Jaime, have you run into Sandy Pentland at MIT by any chance?
    Jaime Kungfu: as a matter of fact, yes
    Calvino Rabeni: recently?
    Jaime Kungfu: I met him last summer at a conference at the Berkman Center
    Calvino Rabeni: Ah, right, it seems like he would have been there
    Jaime Kungfu: John C likes him
    Calvino Rabeni: Looking back at that 2005 essay in edge.org, he was promoting some of his work in human dynamics
    Calvino Rabeni: with the idea - maybe we can start looking at humans has having two minds, an individual one, and a tribal or social mind, that work together
    Calvino Rabeni: Then developing a research programme to start to make that idea seem concrete
    Calvino Rabeni: I think it would in a way, link up to the kind of attitude one may take studying animal communication
    Jaime Kungfu: I've got to get going. I'm sorry I can't continues this conversation at the moment. Good bye.
    Darren Islar: bye Jamie
    Zaldaan Sirnah: It's an interesting conversation.
    Calvino Rabeni: Bye Jaime
    Darren Islar: it is
    Calvino Rabeni: That area between Harvard U and MIT is a kind of research / think tank part of the world - a lot of intellectual innovation happen there
    Calvino Rabeni: Also the state - Massachusetts - is one of the more politically progressive of the United States
    Darren Islar: brb
    Calvino Rabeni: Shall we call it a day / night?
    Darren Islar: yes
    Calvino Rabeni: OK, take care, be well (please!) Darren and Zal
    Darren Islar: see you Cal :)
    Calvino Rabeni: Bye

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