Chaos: the science of surprises, of the nonlinear and the unpredictable. It teaches us to expect the unexpected. Chaos is not simply disorder itself, but it also explores the transitions between order and disorder, which often occurs in surprising ways.

Chaos Theory deals with nonlinear things that are effectively impossible to predict or control (the weather, stockmarkets, brainstates etc..) which is what makes it so interesting. We as humans have an innate need to quantify, prophesise, and understand the things around us.

So why do humans feel the need to feel that the future is set, or at the very least predictable? This is because the things frequently around us are not irregular to a significant degree, but instead follow a basic pattern, so we feel as if we should be able to predict the less simple things using the same, just more advanced, methodology. As day follows into night, seasons change, objects at rest stay that way and objects in motions continue to move, we presume that there is a similarly natural order with the more complex.

We have what John Casti describes as ‘structural stability’ - enough constancy to make life possible. We have found that for things to happen, another must come first for it to create a chain of events. This is known as determinism; we do not know the future but it will occur nonetheless, regardless of our ability to perceive or predict it - the mechanisms still bring about occurrences regardless of how well we can follow it.

Observed regularities in life are a catalyst to the belief of an intelligent designer - if the world is organised in such a meaningful way, with fate already written, then there must have been an initial act of creation. If we live within a clockwork universe, then there must be a clockmaker.

Even today, a lot of science works within the presumption that, with more research, more precise measurements, and more concise mathematics, regular and predictable patterns will emerge. Predictive limitations in science can be viewed as data or processing inadequacies, but this may just further link in to our need to understand what we don't - instead of admitting that some things surpass our ability to understand, we blame our methods of knowing.

So why should we care about chaos if it is something that we won't be able to explain? I think it has to do with how we perceive the future. There is a sense that the future is open, that the complex and sensitive conditions, with their circular feedback and systematic relationships, shift from moment to moment - that the future is self-organised, with no particular end or purpose or plan. That there is both more to the future than what we make of it, but also that the futures changes are dependant on the things that we do.

George Carlin is an american comedian and social critic, who was famous for challenging social norms and taboo subjects through stand up.

He said that “no one knows what's next, but everybody does it”.

And as simple as this may seem, it reminds me that the future is not independent, or following a distinguishable straight line; it is created by what we are doing in a mix of social and biological and human happenings that feed back into each. The present is fleeting - what you have just read is in the past - our lived reality exists briefly, and then it becomes a cause, a reason for something happening. What is coming next is inevitable, but it is not predictable.