The Second Eclectic

Technology changes how we relate to God and each other

Organic Attraction

Hmm. What to tell you today. I wonder if anyone really reads my blog. They really have no reason to, I'm just another anonymous blogger without any really intriguing content. I could be more intentional about the content of my blog, but that seems too artificial.

I've been thinking about the idea of organic v. artificial lately. I think organic developments are much more true and appealing than artificial ones. I think art, cultural trends, products, music, literature, marketing, and other aspects of life are most appealing when they develop organically.

I guess I should define my terms a little bit. Organic means natural or without intent. It grows by not because of growth models or agendas or intended ends. It is not drawn to completion by an idea of the end result but simply by its own existence. The end is not the justification; it is it's own justification simply by what it is in any given moment. Does that make any sense?

Artificial is an antonym. Artificial means predetermined, intended, contrived. The end alone justifies its development. Think of artificial flavors v. non-artificial flavors: the former is made, the latter grows.

I believe that we humans are inclined to prefer the organic over the artificial. We respect those who endeavor to eat organic foods, and we like Herbal Essences because it includes ingredients like aloe, chamomile, and vanilla, as opposed to protholyzine, yellow-5, and ectoplasmic goo. Marketers include words like 'All Natural!' to tap into our organic attraction. I read an article a few years back about the viral (syn: organic) growth of Jones' Soda as a company because of the organic nature of its marketing: word of mouth.

In literature and music, organic will win out much of the time. Literary know-it-alls condemn plot-driven novels and laud character-driven ones. Plot-driven novels have predetermined ends and means for getting there while character-driven works allow the characters to interact and grow and impact the thrust and direction of a story.

Likewise, music that expresses emotion and thought creatively and freshly bodes well, but pre-concieved, formulaic pieces are disdained (although hip-hop is becoming that). Often this means allowing music to inform the lyrics rather than the other way around. But, sometimes an artist can allow both to form a relationship that mutually informs, and beauty results.

Blogs are a good example of organismic products. Who conceives to build a blog that is completely thought out? Who knows their entries before they are written? We are complex humans, and we are able to latch onto complex stories and lives of people quickly. Plot-driven movies do not satisfy because they fail to meet the complexities we experience throughout our lives. Movies are becoming much more nuanced because we are able to discern them.

Look around you and I think you will see more examples of organic attraction v. artificial strategy.