Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Sir Isaac Newton and Lorenz's Butterfly

Oh the wonders of Morris Dancing. I came to a deeper understanding of one of our dances over the last week. The dance is known as Lorenz's Butterfly. I actually find it one of our most beautiful dances, this is due to its dynamic flow and simplicity.  It is also the only dance I know how to call. Here is a version danced by Bogart's Breakfast;

What gave me a deeper understanding was initiated by my watching this outstanding BBC production titled; Complexity - Secret Life of Chaos, and the reading of some amazing scientific minds;

    So what really got me thinking about how all this fits together is how the dance has four dancers ganging up on one dancer, dressed as the devil. I see the four dancers being Alan Turing, Edward Lorenz, Boris Belousov and Robert May all beating up on Sir Issac Newton signifying the death of the Newtonian scientific view. And therefore giving birth to a new science that includes Chaos Theory... The dance has the following moves which signify the following themes;
    1. Opening - ganging up on Newton.
    2. Chorus - exchange of ideas.
    3. Round the gardener - scientific inquiry within a focused area of study.
    4. Chorus - further exchange of ideas.
    5. Flutter - the birth of a new theory.
    6. Chorus - further exchange of ideas.
    7. Lines - the communication of a new theory.
    8. Chorus - further exchange of ideas.
    9. Exit - the setting free of the new theory.
    So there you have it. A Morris dance interpreted as scientific discovery or is that scientific discovery interpreted as a Morris dance, or is that a small jig that sets off the wonders of a whole chaotic Ale... Oh the magic of it all.