An ode to order

In the Hindu pantheon of 330 million gods, the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva tower over the rest. Brahma is the creator and Shiva is the destroyer. And Vishnu? He merely maintains order.

The laws of thermodynamics tells us that the entropy of the universe is constantly increasing. In other words, the default nature of the universe is to lapse into disorder – our homes accumulate dust, the wind strews leaves and dust around, water degrades dams, floods fields and erodes everything it encounters.

However, the very essence of staying alive is to bring order to the world around. Beavers build dams, bees gather honey, trees combine minerals, sunlight and water to produce fruits with kernels that can turn once again into trees. As living beings, we strive to reduce entropy. Once we are dead, our bodies disintegrate and we join the rest of the universe in its unrelenting march towards higher degrees of disorder.

Preserving order is central to leading a more meaningful life. Both a monk seated deep in meditation and the CEO of a multinational firm direct their effort and conscious energy towards preserving order amidst ever increasing complexity.

Chaos is the default state. Chaos happens, while order needs to be maintained – a role important enough to merit a place even if you had to choose 3 among 330 million supernatural beings.

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