Why I Want to Write

Contemporary Chinese Thought 30 (3):41-46 (1999)

Someone asks a climber why he wants to climb a mountain—everyone knows that climbing is dangerous and is of no practical advantage—and he replies, "Because it is there." I like this answer because it shows a sense of humor—it is quite clear that it is because he wants to climb it, but he tries to trick us by saying that it is because the mountain is there that he is itching to get at it. Apart from this, I also like what the climber does, scaling sheer cliffs for no good reason. It may cause aching muscles, and there is a risk you might knock your brains out, so the average person does all he can to avoid climbing mountains. From the point of view of thermodynamics, this is the very rarely seen phenomenon of negative entropy. Because human beings always tend toward what is beneficial and avoid what is harmful, and in thermodynamics spontaneous phenomena are known as entropy-increasing phenomena, anything that tends toward the harmful and avoids the beneficial must be negative entropy
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DOI 10.2753/CSP1097-1467300341
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