Crystallizing the moment has forever been an obsession of mine. The ambition has seemingly taken on a heightened interest and proximity wth age although I suppose it was no less evident when I was practicing law, calculating the explicit terms of a contract, partnership agreement or an inter vivos trust.
Crystallization is the process by which solid forms, where the atoms or molecules are highly organized into a structure known as a crystal. Some ways by which crystals form are precipitating from a solution, freezing, or more rarely deposition directly from a gas. Attributes of the resulting crystal depend largely on factors such as temperature, air pressure, and in the case of liquid crystals, time of fluid evaporation.
Crystallization occurs in two major steps. The first is nucleation, the appearance of a crystalline phase from either a supercooled liquid or a supersaturated solvent. The second step is known as crystal growth, which is the increase in the size of particles and leads to a crystal state. An important feature of this step is that loose particles form layers at the crystal’s surface and lodge themselves into open inconsistencies such as pores, cracks, etc.
Crystallization is the process of becoming definite and clear; it is a natural appetite. Though I call the exercise a hobby horse of mine, crystals are in fact common. Symmetry for example is a regular, repeated pattern of parts and can be found everywhere in nature. Think of the wings of a butterfly, the seeds and leaves in a sunflower or the pattern of a snowflake. Minerals are no exception. Nor is human behaviour.
The act of crystallizing a moment of whatever expression or medium requires in every instance application and refinement. In the context of human conduct and sensitivity – whether capers, exploits or etiquette – the imperative of intellectual, scientific, natural and psychological ingredients is inescapable. That is, the recipe for crystallization is broad and complicated. Crystallization is not to be undertaken except in a sober state, preferably one in which the chemicals are nourished and well rested. The object is definition and clarity.
Not unlike so many other imponderables of life, the resolution lies not so much in the answer as in the question. Why for example are definition and clarity so important to the interpretation and understanding of life? Why can we not settle instead for simple beguilement of what transpires without the added rarefaction? The answer in my opinion is quite possibly motivated by my personal objective only so I won’t weigh in upon your own discernment. I see the pursuit complicated by two competing resources, not that they are necessarily contradictory but which I feel reasonably impute variance and should therefore be addressed for a more delicate proficiency. The tournament is you and I; that is, what you think and what I think. And how those elements manifest our assimilation and insight. Metaphorically it may be no more extraordinary than the view from without and the view from within (which strangely hearkens back to that fundamental debate about the emanation of knowledge, whether innate or empirical). Either way there is value in seeking an assurance of scholarship which is as widely considered as possible.
There is the threat of merely putting the cap on something in order to dress up a situation without fully addressing the details. Or the absorption may be driven by the simple desire to create the appearance of cleanliness and order. It may too express an exhaustion with more penetrating analysis; or the admitted wish to exclude oneself from the battleground that is sometimes life. In the end however I have discovered that tipping the scales, turning the tables or whatever other mechanism one has for decomposition and restructuring is the most fruitful manner of assuaging any discomfort in the arena of human interaction. Seen in that particular light, the process of crystallization is reduction to elemental features which enable fuller comprehension. I am nonetheless reminded that each of us has a different perspective upon the world; each of us, though looking at the same thing, may see it differently, from a different angle as the saying goes. But this admission does not dilute the strength of the proposition that whatever we may say or think, we’re still looking at the same thing. It is a reduction or abstraction which in my opinion trivializes almost every disparity. I especially like too that the acknowledgement strengthens the acceptability of differences (and not at the expense of disguise).
Elimination however is not to be discounted in the process of crystallization. The creation of these marvellous ways of regarding life, these artistic expositions of symmetry and unquestionable beauty, involve naturally overcoming cracks, pores and other inconsistencies. Crystallization should never be seen as a tactful way of distancing oneself from reality; rather as an intricate and balanced way of regarding it, at times a blending of perceptions to overcome differences.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, a martini and the sonorous compositions of Beegie Adair await in the drawing room!