Simple Complexities: The Diagram

Forgive the conflicting title, but it serves to quantify the use of treating a series of complexities as a unit, a simple whole. And for the sake of this current post, it may as well be laid down as Webster’s own.

Started off the evening with some unexpectedly good film noir; specifically, Behind Green Lights (1946).  As is custom with any noir flick, someone usually gets bumped off. My custom-hypothesis being confirmed, I noticed the way the man met his untimely end involved the constriction of his muscles. With thanks to Conan Doyle, I put my recently acquired Holmesian knowledge to work and quickly declared, from behind the sip of a cup of coffee, “Curare!”. I immediately repented, however, after a pause and research, that I remembered curare is a muscle relaxant, and strychnine the opposite. Quick tip of the hat to Miss Marple, Murder Ahoy (1964), and I was back to my original noir, slightly embarrassed but none-the-less enlightened: avoid rushing to conclusions and run-on sentences.

But in my sedentary effort to reduce the rushing and running that had once plagued my judgement, I discovered something so simple, yet so beautifully complex. The chemical diagram of Adenosine Triphosphate, the “molecular unit of currency” in intercellular energy transfer.


Just look at that. Only made up of four elements. Pattern. Rythym. Relationship.
It was both tinder and fuel for the archi-typing mind. I saw the three groupings as string on the left, triad in the middle, and cloud on the right. Could the center represent the Trinity, the cloud’s nitrogen be angels, the string be the geneology of man? In many ways I abstracted this diagram. Just for fun really. But I saw this complexity in the simple unit of a molecule of ATP.

To me, diagrams are simple maps of symbolic things. Thus allowing the relationship, manner, and order of the things to be understood while allowing the detail of the symbolism to be further expanded/researched at a later time. It saves time like the substituting of variable x for a tri-nomial equation in algebra. Like an equation within an equation (shout-out Inception)…

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