A Theory of Churn

When I think ‘what’s the point?’ …about life. Why are we here? What’s our purpose? (And I’ve studied Joe Campbell and comparative religion, as well as basic quantum physics) The thing that makes sense to me is that our purpose is churn – like every other part and particle of the universe. We consume energy in one form, we expel energy in a different form, and the difference comes from churn (for lack of a more complex term).

When I was driving from LA to San Francisco a few weeks ago, I saw a bull mounting a cow as I drove passed the massive cattle heard and stench of Harris Ranch. I’ve recently given up eating meat as an environmental endeavour so I was thinking about how all those cows and the ranch is impacting the climate as I drove – it certainly impacts the smell. In fact, if it hadn’t been for the smell, I probably would've pulled off and snapped a few pictures of the bull and the cows - if only because I thought insemination was done manually.

It got me thinking about how humans have massively accelerated the churn of cow energy – and chicken, and fish, and, and, and – all the energies of the animals we consume. I am not a vegetarian by any stretch of the imagination. Consuming energy of all kinds is a universal process, from stars to plants, animals and humans. I’ve stopped churning meat because of the way it’s farmed, not because I think animals shouldn’t be eaten. I believe that I should be eaten at some point because I am part of that process. I don’t stand outside of it.

But as humans, we have removed ourselves from most of the process of churn, not just in terms of meat but in terms of energy. There are some processes that we can’t interfere with – the churn of oxygen and CO2 possibly being the purest one. What about the energy we release when we run? Or the energy we release when we create? Obviously, these aren’t the same kinds of measurable exchanges like the exchange of gasses, but what if they matter in the same way?

Have we created a huge energy imbalance because we aren’t expelling/releasing energy at the same level as we are consuming energy? We can see that imbalance in the amount of weight the human race is carrying, and we can see it in the waste that consumption generates, but are we blind to the need for accelerated churn output necessary to balance how we have accelerated our energy consumption?

Maybe it’s not just climate change that is affected by how we’ve manipulated churn, maybe there’s more to it than we’ve considered so far. It made me wonder if there’s a way to measure the energy outputs of say a marathon, and if that has any measurable impact on anything. (Nebulous, I know.) I know there is a discernible difference in the energy of a room after we do Suzuki stomping. There is a shift of potential, of capacity, and dare I say gleefulness that is objective and external. The change doesn’t just exist in the subjective perceptions of those of us who stomped. Is it possible that can happen en masse at a marathon where thousands are churning energy for a concentrated amount of time? I understand that this sounds like I’m wondering if 1 + 1 = carrots, but maybe it does.

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