Montréal, September 25, 1999
Emile: Zeus, from now on, ... I'm only going to invest in 'eco-opportunity employers'.
Zeus: I laud your ethic, Emile, ... those companies which do not discriminate when they employ new people deserve our support.
Emile: No, you misunderstand me, ... my ethic is one of discrimination, 'in favor' rather than 'against', and 'eco-opportunity employers' are not companies, ... they are people who employ ecological harmony supporting practices, ... who seek out and exploit ecological opportunity. I intend to discriminate in favor of eco-opportunity employers and, ....
Zeus: ... Don't tell me, ... let me guess, .... you are going to discriminate against 'mecho-opportunity employers', ... right?
Emile: You are right and wrong at the same time, Zeus. You are right in mentioning the 'reciprocal' behavior in terms of 'mecho-opportunity employers', ... but wrong in your use of 'discrimination against'. I only have to discriminate once, in a positive and supportive sense, ... although this tactic if prevalent, could have the effect of starving out the reciprocal 'mecho' behavior.
Zeus: But your the one who's always talking about being non-judgemental and now you're embracing an ethic of discrimination, however you want to fuzzify it, ... you're contradicting yourself, Emile.
Emile: If you think back, ... what I said was that I saw the need to transcend BINARY judgement, ... the abstract, absolutist, non-relativistic judgement which is based on 'mutual exclusion', ... 'true or false', ... 'good or bad', ... and which leads towards the politics of 'purification', euphemistically referred to as 'optimization' and 'progress'. The Heraclitean connotation of 'judgement', which assumes that opposites are enfolded in one another, as in the notion of 'yin-yang' leads to a different type of judgement, ... as Heraclitus said, "The wise is one thing, to be acquainted with true judgement, how all things are steered through all." Anyhow, 'contradicting' is a term which is based on mutual exclusion, a term favored by mecho-opportunity employers. Our language is very deficient in terms which express eco-opportunity notions such as, ... in place of contradiction, ... being discordant against one's own harmonic intent.
Zeus: I see what you mean, ... the reference to the root 'diction' in 'contradiction' implies that one is going against what one previously 'said', which does not necessarily mean going against one's previously felt 'intent'. And besides, ... intent and purpose are much more important concepts that linguistic propositions. As Vygotsky says, ... "To understand another's speech, it is not sufficient to understand his words --- we must understand his thought. But even that is not enough --- we must also know its motivation. No pyschological analysis of an utterance is complete until that plane is reached."
Emile: Yes, eco-opportunity employers do not get stuck on issues of 'contradiction', ... they let go of logical detail, and go for the jugular of motivation and purpose, ... using their relational intelligence to ask themselves, .... is it eco-harmonic or is it not? This higher dimensional sense and respond approach does not fall apart, in such cases as the judging of serial killers, who at one moment are 'good guys' and the next moment 'bad guys'.
Zeus: Wait just a minute Emile, ... this is a new one on me, ... at precisely 'what moment' can you call serial killers 'good guys'.
Emile: When they are dressed in the military uniform of your country and are engaging in a war endorsed by your government. At that point, we want them to be 'mecho-opportunity employers' and just 'follow orders', ... but later, when we lose the war and the winners bring us to trial for 'war crimes', ... we find out that 'following orders' is a lesser thing than 'motivation' and we are suddenly being held responsible for our motivation, ... and if the motivation was deemed 'evil', then 'following orders' is no excuse and our serial killers flip from being 'good guys' to 'bad guys'.
Zeus: What you are saying is that 'good' and 'bad' can be applied on different levels, and the lesson of Nuerenburg was that people need to question their superiors in the control hierarchy rather than simply accepting their marching orders just because of the power of position which accrues to their superiors, ... i.e. that people must assess the motivation of the folks up the hierarchy with respect to their motivations. I'm beginning to take your point Zeus, ... first the serial killer is asked to 'follow orders' and trust in the democratic process, and later, when the initiative fails, he is judged on the basis of the motivation of those who gave him the orders. And if he decides he doesn't like the motivation and 'dodges the draft', so to speak, ... because he wants to shift into the mode of questioning motivation first and accepting orders second, ... he will be judged a criminal by those who put 'rules' in the primacy over 'motivation'.
Emile: You've got the point, ... binary judgement takes an issue out of the context of time and out of the particulars of the containing environment, and is 'mecho-' type of behavior which is exposed to Goedel's theorem, ... the limitations of finite systems of mutually exclusive logic. For example who says that the Neurenberg judges were 'right' in their assessment of 'good' or 'bad'?, ... we would need a higher court to decide that right?, ... and then a higher-high court to judge if the high court judged 'correctly', ... and so on, ... out to ,...
Zeus: ..... Infinity! ... Yes, now I remember, ... Goedel's theorem as expressed in a Russel's paradox form, ... " "the judge who judges all those and only those who do not judge themselves, ...can neither judge himself nor avoid doing so."
Emile: Yes, ... the 'eco-opportunity employer', rather than excluding time from his 'judgement', perceives things in terms of the space-time continuum which more completely characterizes our reality, than does 'the simplest convention' as Poincare referred to it, of 'euclidian space', ... a flat, rectangular space where we conceptualize the world in terms of fixed things out of the context of time, ... and then are forced to add time back in, in the form of a linear sequencing. Of course if you are an astute observer of real life, as Heraclitus was, ... it is obvious that there are no fixed 'things' and as he said; "Upon those that step into the same rivers, different and different waters flow . . . They scatter and . . . gather . . . come together and flow away . . . approach and depart."
Zeus: Yes, ... like a geologist's view of the evolutionary history of the world, ... and with respect to the dimensions of a lifetime, ... like the view from the accused's testifying box in Nuerenberg, ... as he sits there while the prosecution deftly flips from 'rules-over-motivation' to 'motivation-over-rules', depending on 'whose rules' they are. No wonder the Taoists are always saying, ... "maybe yes, ... maybe no". ... But Emile, even though the euclidan notion of a 'fixed thing', ... upon which we build our language and logic, is only an abstract approximation, even down to the level of fundamental particles where, as the Berkeley physicist Henry Stapp puts it, ... "An elementary particle is not an independently existing, unanalyzable entity. It is, in essence, a set of relationships that reach out to other things." .... Even though a 'thing' is our own abstraction which we impose on nature, ... and even though we don't really need the notion of 'thing' for our own cognitive processes, since relational patterns contain the notion of 'thing' as a subsidiary aspect, ... we do need the notion of 'thing', do we not, for compressing and sharing our thoughts?
Emile: That's right, ... but we can never forget that the notion of a 'thing' is a synthetic fabrication of our own making, and while the 'mecho-opportunity employer' or Mecho-OE tends to forgets this, ... the 'eco-opportunity employer' or Eco-OE never has to remember it because he is operating at a higher dimensional level which implicitly includes the notion of 'thing', in an informational sense. In Henri Laborit's 'La Nouvelle Grille' based definition of a 'thing', ... it is no more that a sub-ensemble which we 'abstract' from a larger ensemble, and all sub-ensembles are informationally, part of the whole ensemble. As Laborit says, speaking about 'living things' (and the inanimate may be distinguished simply by slower informational exchanges), ...
"From the atomic level to the social level, in passing by the molecular level, the cellular level, then organ, system etc. each level 'englobes' the sub-jacent and is englobed in the above-jacent. Thus, a molecule which is made of elements that one designates by the word 'atoms', may itself be an element of a cell. And this is not all. These systems find themselves all within an organism, an individual, be it animal or be it human. And this organism, which is itself within an environment, a space, is also included in a social group (familial, professional, syndicate, confessionel, ethnic). which is in turn part of the larger social groups which englobe it. ethnic, national, blocs of nations and finally, from level of organization to level of organzation, one gets to the level of the species on the planet. From bacteria to man, a living organism is distinguished thus by its organization of which the dynamic cannot be understood but by envisaging the relations existing between the levels of organization, that is to say, how each level is going to enter into functional rapport with that which englobes it."
Zeus: So what Laborit is saying, ... is that we simply 'abstract' the notion of a thing based on its kind-of-fixed material substance, ignoring its informational exchanges which make it inseparable from the whole ensemble.
Emile: Yes, and you can imagine that if you start building a whole system of conception, theory, language and everything, ... upon the abstract and approximate notion of fixed parts, attaching fixed word-labels and all that to them, ... you are going to be ignoring the whole aspect of 'reciprocal disposition' which speaks to the space-time 'shape' of the ensemble, the informational geometry. An 'eco-opportunity employer', meanwhile, is 'coming from' this shape, ... that's where his viewpoint comes from, ... it is implicit in all his reasoning, ... while a 'mecho-opportunity employer' sees the world as a collection of fixed things where the future is fabricated from the mechanical-causal dynamics amongst these things. While the former Eco-OE view accounts for 'opportunity' associated with the 'shape' of space-time, ... the latter Mecho-OE view sees only real, tangible structures, ... and certainly not the 'structures' as defined by Henri Laborit.
Zeus: I'm with you for the most part, ... but I can't get it into my head how one's perceptual viewpoint, .... er, 'viewsource' can 'come from' the 'shape' of space.
Emile: Think back to what Hermann Minkowski, ...the German 'geometer' who taught Einstein at the Zuerich Polytechnic, said, a few years after Poincare and Einstein had formulated special relativity theory. He was the first to put forth the idea of four-dimensional space-time and in a famous lecture in 1908, he asserted; "Henceforth space by itself, and time by itself, are doomed to fade away into mere shadows, and only a kind of unity between the two will preserve an independent reality." Of course, Hermann, being a bit absent-minded, had overlooked the fact that it had taken a couple of centuries to get everyone up to speed on the Copernican system, ... it being proposed over a half-century before Bruno, Kepler and Galileo tried to 'run with it', and ran smack into some fiery resistance amongst the high priests of science and church, ... to get it installed. And think back also to Einstein's discussion of 'Ether and The Theory of Relativity' (1921), ... the part where he is saying that space itself can be thought of as an object which, though incapable of motion, can influence whatever it comes into contact with;
"Generalizing, we may say this: --- There may be supposed to be extended physical objects to which the idea of motion cannot be applied. They may not be thought of as consisting of particles which allow themselves to be separately tracked through time. In Minkowski's idiom this is expressed as follows: ---Not every extended conformation in the four-dimensional world can be regarded as composed of world-threads." ... "... recognition of the fact that "empty space" [as extended physical object] in its physical relation is neither homogeneous nor isotropic ... has I think, finally disposed of the view that space is physically empty. . . . The ether of the general theory of relativity is a medium which is itself devoid of 'all' mechanical and kinematical qualities, but helps to determine mechanical (and electromagnetic) events."
Zeus: ... I understand that space-time or the 'ether' as Einstein continued to call it, ... has 'shape' and that such 'shape' influences the material things immersed within it, ... but what I'm struggling with is this question of allowing one's mind to perceive reality as if 'coming from' the ether, as if 'coming from' the 'container-which-immerses'.
Emile: Don't be discouraged, Zeus, ... after two and a half millenia of being conditioned to think in terms of euclidian space, where all that's real is material things and all else is empty void, ... one has to practice a bit, ... just like the good pool players do, ... to get into the 'immersed' state of mind where they are 'coming from' the 'shape' rather than from the mechanics of the game. As Einstein said in his lecture to the Prussian Academy of Science, on this very issue of 'Geometry and Experience' and the need to visualize relativistic space which interferes with its own contents, .... "My only aim today has been to show that the human faculty of visualisation is by no means bound to capitulate to non-Euclidean geometry.", ... and he also describes the simple process for doing so, ... using our relational, as opposed to rational thinking process, ... the former which contains the latter as a special case, ... but that is another story. What Einstein says in regard to 'seeing' the 'shape' of space, he says in terms of a 'geometrical-physical' theory, as the good pool player has in his head; "A geometrical-physical theory as such is incapable of being directly pictured, being merely a system of concepts. But these concepts serve the purpose of bringing a multiplicity of real or imaginary sensory experiences into connection in the mind. To 'visualise' a theory, or bring it home to one's mind, therefore means to give a representation to that abundance of experiences for which the theory supplies the schematic arrangement. "
Zeus: Ok, ... now I'm beginning to get the picture. Relativistic space is curved and interferes with itself, just like the ensemble of balls in a game of pool, and in order to get a sense of this self-referentiality, the 'shape' of space, one must think in the four-dimensional terms of space-time.
Emile: That's right, ... you can't keep thinking in terms of a causal-mechanical progression as in the non-relativistic euclidian convention, ... or as Minkowski says, ... you can't keep thinking in terms of a structure based on world-threads, ... the 'shape' of the overall space-time configuration is really the reciprocal of that, where the reference is the containing whole rather than a particular 'viewpoint' or perspective. Remember our discussions about the concept of 'reciprocal' and the 'identity element', as in algebra? The dictionary describes 'reciprocal' in terms of; "an element, such as Zero in the set of all integers under addition or One in the set of positive integers under multiplication, that leaves any element of the set to which it belongs unchanged when combined with it by a specified operation.", ... and the sculpture on the top of Mont Royal? ... One can see the shape of the whole pie and the 'piece' if one thinks of the pie with the piece cut out of it. So the view from the 'whole' is kind of like the 'negative space' view of the artist, ... always coming from the 'whole' of what he wants to express and letting his brush strokes be guided firstly by the viewsource of the 'whole', ... of course, he can subsequently focus in on the detail of the 'part' but that is a secondary consideration, ... just as it is secondary to the good pool player, who first focuses on 'shape' and only subsequently focuses in on 'making shots'.
Zeus: I think I'm getting it now, ... and both the pool player and artist strike me as good exemplars of people 'coming from' the viewsource of the containing whole. And thinking in the four-dimensional dynamics of space-time gives you this sense of 'shape' as in impressionist paintings where the artist paints the dynamic of a leaf in the container of atmosphere, .. with respect to its space-time flutter, ... capturing the dynamical shape of the englobing space-time in which the constituent leaf is immersed, as the configuration changes, ... just like painting the whole pie with the piece missing, on the way to getting to the shape of the 'piece' of the pie, ... and I can also see how this relates to Laborit's informational-web view of 'structure', particular where he says; "From bacteria to man, a living organism is distinguished thus by its organization of which the dynamic cannot be understood but by envisaging the relations existing between the levels of organization, that is to say, how each level is going to enter into functional rapport with that which englobes it." Just as in the case of the leaf fluttering on the tree, or should we say the air and leaf 'co-fluttering', ... our 'understanding' of that leaf in the context of the whole, is available to us when we are 'coming from' the viewsource of the containing whole, or nestings of whole-and-part, ... and we will never get to that understanding by rational inquiry, where we 'take the leaf apart' and study all its pieces and their causal mechanical dynamics, .... we need instead to look at the co-informational relationships, ... or 'geometrical-experiential' relationships, as Einstein advised, ... between the 'sub-ensemble' we are abstracting from the whole, ... and the whole. But now that I understand this relativistic four-dimensional view, which is so much richer and more satisfying than the non-relativistic three dimensional view, ... the question comes to me, ... since this stuff was known almost a century ago, ... what is taking it so long to be assimilated into our culture.
Emile: Pheeeuuuuuhhhhhhwww. That's a large sized question, Zeus, ... and one which requires a four-dimensional answer which is beyond the capability of explicit words, ... but if we follow the advice of Einstein, and look for the understanding in terms of 'bringing a multitude of real and imaginary experiences into our mind, we can note a few of those relevant experiences and then soak on them for a minute and let them 'come into confluence' in our minds and thus form the four-dimensional 'implicit' understanding we are looking for, ... right? .... .... you ready?, .... here goes;
1. Kepler was coming from 'shape', ... from the container of space, and observed that the most important thing about planetary movement was its SIMULTANEOUS harmony of whole-and-part. This meant, as Kepler pointed out, that something 'bigger' than the sum of the parts, ... the containing space, the 'universe' had to be inducing the harmony. Galileo, Descartes and Newton, meanwhile, regressed to non-relativistic 'perspective' and dropped that notion, ... so we ended up with gravity being seen as innate in material things, ... rather than being firstly and simultaneously a property of space, as Einstein would have it, ... just like electromagnetism. We put the 'parts' in the primacy over the 'container', and this reinforced the Aristotelian notion of the primacy of matter and the euclidian notion that space was empty.
2. Denis Gabor, the discoverer of holography, in his quantum physics compliant 'Theory of Communications', ... noticed that the basic units of information, to be quantum reality compliant, had to be 'complex' and have imaginary as well as real components. What this did was to flip the notion of the information signal as 'coming from' a particular perspective, ... to the signal as coming from its own 'containing space', ... the 'field' which contained the tangible parts. In other words, information doesn't have much meaning if it comes without surrounding context, ... like, .. 'tonights hockey scores are 3-2, 5-1, and 7-4'. We need, as well, some englobing, sense-giving context to deal with informational issues like 'what's hockey?', 'what's a score?', 'who's playing ?' That's like sending out a bit stream without any supporting 'story' to it, where the sense-giving perspective remains unstated and all you have is information on 'what is'. You can see here, if you think about Laborit's 'structure model' and Goedel's theorem, ... that there will never be any finite end to containing context, ... nor can we exclude it at the most fundamental level, if we want to preserve the informational connections which our experience tells us are there. So where Gabor's complex units 'come from', is from the shape of space-time which contains the 'what is', from the rotational field which envelopes the 'what is' informational tangibles. The basic information unit is thus in little packets of 'container-content-coresonance' as opposed to an inert bit which assumes it needs no contextual space to be contained in.
3. Philosophically, our western culture has been mired down in 'materialism', where material things and tangible or 'factual' information is valued more than the qualitative 'shape' of nature and the artist and more than the intangible myth which captures the implicit understanding of the ages, ... of our ancestors. This inverted valuing of material structure over immaterial 'space-time shape', ... the 'space-time-shape' of Kepler and Laborit, ... Minkowski and Einstein, ... is backwards with respect to the depth, or 'dimensionality' of information and understanding which can be conveyed by these two modes of perceiving, ... so it becomes an inhibitor to its own 'updating'. That is, the purely material structural view needs to 'swallow itself' and be reborn into a higher dimensional mode which can look out over itself, .. but of course, the mode of 'materialism' aka 'rationality' is not 'big enough' in a dimensional sense (remember Russell's paradox), to accomplish its own self-swallowing, .. one needs a self-referential cognitive capability for this, ... which is indeed the nature of our basic relational intelligence which boots up every morning and which contains our rationality as a subsidiary mode. But we have deified rationality to the point that we are frightened to leave it long enough to update our rational axioms, and flip them from 'matter-over-space' to 'space-over-matter'. It's like a tortoise going into the shell-repair shop, and having the clerk tell him, ... 'we'll need a few days to do this', ... you can pick it up on Friday'. If the tortoise agrees, ...when he comes back, ... he's unlikely to have any fingernails left.
We in the west have embraced the dominator, win/lose myth of Heracles where winning is everything and the 'space outside of winning' is barren and void, ... where the sense of whole-and-part coresonance is just not on. The western myth of Psyche and Eros, ... which speaks to the co-resonance of immaterial container and material constituent, has been eclipsed by the Heraclean myth, ... remember when the 'voices from space-time' compared the myth of Psyche and Eros to the Inuit story of 'skeleton lady'?  The bottom line was, that in order to make the paradigm updating transformation, one had to reference oneself fully to the 'tower of jupiter', ... the center of one's relational or intuitive intellect and go against all the rational advice, in order to get to the 'wings you were flying with' and update one's rational axioms, ... replacing those ten pound axioms which we keep building twenty pound theorems on for some heavy duty 'container-over-constituents' models. For the 'eco-opportunity employer', ... this means balancing on a floor of pure whole-and-part harmony and riding it out for awhile.
4. Entrenched belief in 'constituents over container' in the western psyche is not the only impediment which resists change, however, ... as there is a 'gatekeeping' gauntlet to be run for any new axioms, ... particular for an axiom as basic as the inverting of the polarity of 'constituent over container' back to 'container over constituent', ... and a gatekeeping force similar to the 'good doctors of the church' who protected the Aristotelian perception, ... as complained about so vigourously be Kepler;
"So much for the authority of Holy Scripture. Now as regards the opinions of the saints about these matters of nature, I answer in one word, that in theology the weight of Authority, but in philosophy the weight of Reason alone is valid. Therefore a saint was Lanctantius, who denied the earth's rotundity; a saint was Augustine, who admitted the rotundity, but denied that antipodes exist. Sacred is the Holy Office of our day, which admits the smallness of the earth but denies its motion: but to me more sacred than all these is Truth, when I, with all respect for the doctors of the Church, demonstrate from philosophy that the earth is round, circumhabited by antipodes, of a most insignificant smallness, and a swift wanderer among the stars."
It must not be forgotten that the high priests of science are for the most part 'elected' on the basis of their 'rational inquiry' abilities, since mainstream science is all about 'rational inquiry' and it is the minority group who are struggling with 'relational inquiry' needed to handle the primacy of 'space-time shape' over 'material contents'. Henri Laborit eschewed doing research within a discipline, for this reason, and he also eschewed being funded by commercial interests which were similarly infused with 'materialist prejudice' and so he financed his own research center, 'L'Hopital Boucicault' with money from his patents. Henri has this to say about the gatekeeping of new ideas which 'come from' the view of the whole, rather than from the perspective of the part;
Note that in his book 'La Nouvelle Grille', Laborit uses the term 'grille' to refer to the conceptual viewframing, both in the sense of prison bars which kept us caged in, and also in the sense of the 'Lucinda'  imposed over the true image of his subject by the artist, and he points out that each 'new grill' must swallow up and contain the old grill, ... but there is a problem with the high priests of the disciplines as this 'new grill' which is now transdisciplinary, tries to invert the primacy of the 'containing whole' over the 'constituent parts'. There is also a problem on this with the general public which explains why the 'new grill' does not, as Laborit notes, become 'trendy subjects which the press rejoices about', ... or 'the current topic of dining room conversation';
"But they [the 'new grills'] are generally approached in a parcelled out (partitioned and wrapped up into neat parcels or packets) manner, for only the specialist has impact on opinion. He is worthy of belief for his exposee presents itself forcefully, in a simplified form, that of his discipline. Syntheses [whole-over-part] are more complex to expose, demanding on the part of the reader, even when they have been simplified, a major attentive effort, a spectrum of more extended understandings. Their dissemination, as a consequence, proves to be more difficult. Their conclusions are also profoundly different.
And then especially when a synthesis is not easily integrated into known cultural schemas, when it doesn't reinforce an already existing current opinion, a political ideology or a social idealogy currently in vogue, it has little chance of finding an immediate echo. It is unable to be taken seriously. The person who expresses it is not seen to demonstrate a humanism of real worth, ... this humanism which doesn't disturb anything, which calls out to the great forerunners, of the 'culture' in place, that is to say to the suite of prejudices and common linkages of a society and an epoch.
But there is so much joy in establishing a new structure for which such approvals are neither necessary nor sufficient, although nice to have, in its motivation."
... by the way, ... the joy was articulated in 1974, and I have the impression that Henri was pretty pissed, by the lack of takeup, by 1995, when he died.
.... so, Zeus, ... in an attempt to answer your large size question, ... there are four items which fall into the category of 'real and imaginary experiences' to be brought into connection in your mind, ... how's it coming?
Zeus: It's coming well, in terms of my personal comprehension, that is. So much seems to have hinged on the historical fact that the notion of gravity put 'things' in a primacy over 'space'.
Emile: yes indeed, ... unlike the situation with electromagnetism wherein Faraday made sure  that we retained the primacy of 'space-over-matter'. Kepler's most emphatic point  about simultaneous harmonies, ... about the fact that the pattern of spatially coherent coresonance which the universe 'adorned' its immersed 'planetary constituents' with, was more dimensionally comprehensive than could be explained 'bottom-up' from the causal mechanics of the planets themselves, ... this key point of Kepler's, ... was totally thrown out by this historic development; i.e. Newton's 'matter-over-space'  formulation of the universal law of gravitation. More than that, so did we ignore his point  about 'not throwing out the baby with the bathwater' in the case of astrology, ... wherein he pointed out that it was obvious that we were being influenced by the skies which contained us, in a way which we could not get to by 'bottom-up' causal reasoning.
Zeus: ... Hmmm, ... and against that backdrop, ... it's getting much easier to describe the difference in the sense-and-respond characteristics of an 'eco-opportunity employer' versus a 'mecho-opportunity' employer'.
Emile: Yes, the Eco-OE is 'coming from' the view of the primacy of container-over-constituents, like the good pool player. He has subordinated the win-lose myth of Heracles where all is void and null if you don't win, ... to the myth of Eros and Psyche where there is a 'sacred marriage' in which the yin of implicit experience englobes the yang of explicit knowledge, ... where the reciprocal 'whole' of the container englobes the material 'constituents'. This fits with the view of Bohr and Heisenberg, that implicit experience is in the primacy over our explicit knowledge . As a result, the Eco-OE is always tuning to simultaneous harmony opportunities as indeed makes sense if one models reality in terms similar to Laborit's informational 'web of life' and/or natural ecologies. In all cases, the Eco-OE's 'coming from' the primacy of container-over-constituent gives him access to both the relational implicit and the rational explicit at the same time, .... just as in the case of the pool player, ... so he doesn't have to abandon 'binary judgement' and causality, ... he just uses them as support tools rather than the primary means of regulating his behavior, ... which he instead bases on 'tuning in' to evolutionary consequences in terms of 'space-time shape'. The Eco-OE, like Ongwehonweh, learns how to be 'coming from' 'who he is', ... from his own authentic ontogenetic 'self'.
Zeus: ... and the mecho-opportunity employer, he is faced with this problem of judging everything out of the context of space-time, ... and following the rule hierarchies and judgements made by his superiors in the control structure, never knowing when the 'musical chairs' antics up the ladder will trigger those trap doors and changeout the command again, so that his yesterdays 'good' judgements suddenly invert to become 'bad' judgements in retrospect, ... or whether he will be living in St. Petersburg or Leningrad. The mecho-OE will be infused with the myth of Heracles, and will set out to 'dominate' and control his competition, rather than looking for simultaneous co-resonances, ... he will be the poor player who tries to make every shot opportunity he has, and sees the game as being described through explicit causal dynamics, ... totally ignoring the overriding influence of 'space-time shape' or 'reciprocal disposition' within which he is presented with, and makes, his shots.
Emile: ... Unfortunately yes, ... and not only will he be seeing things in these stark and skeletal terms on the pool table in front of him, he will likely be seeing his whole life in the same way, ... in terms of a spindley tree of causal dynamics, .... and never stopping to appreciate the rich confluence of his container within which he is an immersed constituent. He is thus exposed to discovering late in the game, as John Lennon says; that his life 'is something that happened while he was busy 'making other plans', ... focusing on causal dynamics. And saddest of all, ... he will allow his life activity and 'who he is' to be retro-defined by statistical averages and hierarchical rule structures and political correctness expectations which he accepts as givens, ... but which are nothing more than the abstract, synthetic fabrications of a rationalist collective.
Zeus: ...It is clear to me that there is some eco-OE and some mecho-OE in each of us, ... but it seems to me that the mecho-OE has been generally rising into dominance, of late, with myth and imagination deprivation being the result, ... the fading away of our Camelotian aspirations where we saw 'community' as being something more than bricks, timbers and mortar, ... and where we saw a 'nation' as being a nation of people instead of a surveyed piece of sovereign territory policed by fences and checkpoints. It seems that we are drifting into allowing ourselves to become 'politically correct machines' and our youth, as Ernest Becker says , tortured by not being allowed to 'be who they are', .... tortured by being snookered by a society obsessed with mechanical dynamics to the point of ignoring the deterioration of 'space-time-shape', are undergoing a 'crisis of heroism' which is tending to breed anti-heroes. Meanwhile, the gatekeepers and the media continue to protect the 'lock-in' of the 'mecho-opportunity' way of life. We seem to be caught in a 'catch 22' situation where we need to use our imagination and face the skeleton lady in the closet, so that we can be reborn into a larger story, ... but have run out of imagination and courage to do so.
Emile: ... Space-time will tell, Zeus, ... meanwhile, ... we need to become a lot more discriminatory, ... not 'against' anything in the old Heraclean dominator sense, ... but in the sense of reinforcing eco-opportunity employers.
Zeus: Your words certainly coresonant in my container, Emile.
* * *
 Notion of 'structure' as introduced in Laborit's 'La Nouvelle Grille' (1974), ... following text captured from his later presentation of the notion in "Les Bases Biologiques du Comportements Sociaux" (1991);
"Man can only apprehend 'ensembles' (sets) and an ensemble, represented here by the large circle, is constituted from elements which are represented by small circles, as this Venn diagram illustrates. these elements are not randomly placed, they have relationships among themselves which are very precise that are represented by the arrows. The ensemble of these relationships which permits 'form', .. the shaping of the ensemble, is called the Structure, with a capital 'S'. But it is impossible, and i won't go into detail, to know the 'Structure', that is to say all the relations existing between the elements of an ensemble. Physics, .. the physicists,will explain to you why. In short, we apprehend, we abstract from an ensemble what is called a sub-ensemble, a part of the ensemble of relations. That is to say a 'structure' but not with a capital 'S' this time, a small structure which isn't the total structure. And the first notion which it is necessary to well understand, it is that the 'ideology' (what i call the ideology, the ideologies) consists in believing that the sub-ensemble constitutes the ensemble of relations, the ensemble Structure with a capital 'S', in two words, truth and objectivity. But consider a traffic accident: everyone sees it objectively, but no-one will describe it to you in the same way simply because they have abstracted from the ensemble, the car accident which they have witnessed, a sub-ensemble which was not the ensemble of the existing relations. One understands, from there, that this sub-structure , this sub-ensemble of relations, depends on the observer who has done the abstracting. The notion of structure is therefore important in the methodology for inquiry into the living world, and i have elsewhere written booklet on the subject in 1968. But in what way is it important?
The term structure implies some relations between the material and energy-giving elements which constitute living beings. It is moreover this particular shaping of materials which distinguishes living material from the inanimate.material, since both are composed of the same atomic materials. What does this mean?
The characteristic of the structure of living beings resides in the fact that it organizes itself by levels which maintain close informational liaisons. From the atomic level to the social level, in passing by the molecular level, the cellular level, then organ, system etc. each level 'englobes' the sub-jacent and is englobed in the above-jacent. Thus, a molecule which is made of elements that one designates by the word 'atoms', may itself be an element of a cell (there again, i go rapidly for between the molecule and the cell there are a lot of things which happen reported on from the other elements within the cell) and this, element of an organ, the organ, the element of a system, (cardiovascular, endocrine, digestive, nervous etc.). An this is not all. These systems find themselves all within an organism, an individual, be it animal or be it human. And this organism, which is itself within an environment, a space, is also included in a social group (familial, professional, syndicate, confessionel, ethnic). which is in turn part of the larger social groups which englobe it. ethnic, national, blocs of nations and finally, from level of organization to level of organzation, one gets to the level of the species on the planet.
From bacteria to man, a living organism is distinguished thus by its organization of which the dynamic cannot be understood but by envisaging the relations existing between the levels of organization, that is to say, how each level is going to enter into functional rapport with that which englobes it."
 Albert Einstein, excerpt from 'Geometry and Experience', an Address to the Prussian Academy of Sciences in Berlin on January 27, 1921.
"Can we picture to ourselves a three-dimensional universe which is finite, yet unbounded?
The usual answer to this question is ``No,'' but that is not the right answer. The purpose of the following remarks is to show that the answer should be ``Yes.'' I want to show that without any extraordinary difficulty we can illustrate the theory of a finite universe by means of a mental image to which, with some practice, we shall soon grow accustomed.
First of all, an observation of epistemological nature. A geometrical-physical theory as such is incapable of being directly pictured, being merely a system of concepts. But these concepts serve the purpose of bringing a multiplicity of real or imaginary sensory experiences into connection in the mind. To 'visualise' a theory, or bring it home to one's mind, therefore means to give a representation to that abundance of experiences for which the theory supplies the schematic arrangement. In the present case we have to ask ourselves how we can represent that relation of solid bodies with respect to their reciprocal disposition (contact) which corresponds to the theory of a finite universe. There is really nothing new in what I have to say about this; but innumerable questions addressed to me prove that the requirements of those who thirst for knowledge of these matters have not yet been completely satisfied. So, will the initiated please pardon me, if part of what I shall bring forward has long been known? "
 Excerpt from 'Pow wow on Ile Bonsecours: Voices from Space-Time at http://rampages.onramp.net/~emlumley/powwow.htm
" ... After the chanting, drumming, dancing and singing had prepared him, he let himself submerge down into the depths of the ancient stories, ... stories which seemed amazingly consistent amongst ancient cultures in their space-time topology, ... amongst eastern cultures as well as aboriginal and Celt, mythopoeic predecessors to the western rationalist culture. It seemed more amazing to Emile, that the white man's culture continued to ignore these stories, ... and even to repress them.
He listened on, ... When the story came to where the 'skeleton' lady was accidently reclaimed from the deep by the hunter-fisherman who had been expecting a big fat fish, ... and it had terrified him so that he ran from her but could not escape, ... the voices started to become active again;
..."He is being awakened from his sleep, ... the sleep which has him go through his life indifferent to what he is doing to himself, ... indifferent to his own possibilities, ... to his potential to 'plunge into' his own authentic life. We who live in the eastern mediterranean have this myth too, ... it is the forgotten myth, ... displaced by the control and domination myth of Heracles, ... it is the myth of Psyche and Eros, ..."
Emile got hold of his mind and re-tuned in to this strange imagery in the Inuit myth, ...of the hunter-fisherman flying back to the refuge of his ice house, ... the skeleton-lady, unknown to him, still strung up in his fishing gear and dragging along behind him. Finally he reached his home and dove into through the small tunnel entrance into the darkness of his unlit igloo, ... finally he could rest and relax and feel safe again. He lit his oil lamp and as the light filled his igloo, ... to his great shock he saw skeleton-lady's twisted and contorted form lying on the furs which lined the floor of his home, ... one leg over a shoulder, ... another lodged within her rib cage, ... armbones akimbo. Skeleton lady could do nothing about her state of disarray, having lain for so many years beneath the sea, ... sacrificed by her own parents in their desire to escape from the storm which they blamed her for. Her rounded beauty and fleshy hands taken from her too soon by the creatures of the sea, and her teeth and bones now mottled and encrusted by barnacles and sea-growth, stared vacantly out at hunter-fisherman. Strangely, he felt a caring begin to glow in his heart and he responded to it by going over to her and straightening out her limbs, ... then he slept, ... and he dreamt. And in his dream, ... one of those dreams where great emotions are stirred, ... a tear came to his eye. Skeleton lady saw the tear beginning to form, and the thirst of her long exile at the bottom of the sea rose up like a passion within her. She moved towards the sleeping hunter-fisherman and began to drink of the tear, ... and as she drank, the flow began to grow, rapidly becoming a torrent which commenced to fill and replenish her. Soon she had fresh young skin again, .... and rounded breasts, ... and the fleshiness of the divine divide between her thighs swelled and opened with her desire. She climbed under the furs with the sleeping hunter-fisherman, ... took off his clothes and he awoke in the passionate warmth of their love-making.
.... "Psyche has returned from her trip to the underworld, her descent into Hades, ... and Psyche and Eros are now united in sacred marriage", ... the voice said.
Emile looked around for the source of the voice again, ... but all he could see was the Inuit elder who played and softly chanted into a large circular hand drum, to accompany the Inuit woman as she told her skeleton-lady story, ...
... "The watchtower of Jupiter, the sun, radiant center of the world, whose doctrine, misshapen by the forgetfulness of the ages, once again informs. Is it any wonder, when youth is told, instead, that the world is fragmented into unnumerable centers, the centers of detached things, .... the perspectival centers of a voyeur viewing of the world, ... that our children are confused and depressed?"
This time Emile recognized the words as those of Johannes Kepler, ... speaking of the 'simultaneous unity and plurality' of the system of sun and planets, ... and the simple intellect which comes to us all from the center of intuitive intellection, ... a simple intellect needed to give us story, ... to make sense of all our mechanical ratiocinations.
Emile recognized the difficult journey into the underground that faced everyone, ... a journey which transcended rationality, ... in which the watchtower of Jupiter, the center of intuitive intellection, could be the only guide. Just as the hunter-fisherman had had to abandon and go against all conventional wisdom in facing the skeleton-lady, ... to descend through the layers of cultural convention to get to a deeper, truer story, ... so, it seems, must we all today. For the aboriginal, orphaned for hundreds of years from his authentic place in the world, ... for the western whiteman, orphaned for thousands of years from his authentic place in the world, ... it had become exceeding difficult to run against entrenched cultural tides, ... to go with the wind of nature and against the flow of affection from those who would keep you on the hollow path, ... to put the Containor, ... the simultaneous unity and plurality of the mythopoeic peoples and modern physics in a primacy over the 'sequential unity and plurality' of the western world. It was formidably difficult to look into the face of your own death and not turn away, .... to recover your true potentiality from its deep burial beneath the bad advice of those who insist they need you and give their love as proof, ... to turn your back on the powerful forces of co-optation which plead with you to live someone else's life and betray your authentic self.
It was 2:00 a.m. Monday morning now, ... and Emile had finished his typing of "Pow Wow on Ile Bonsecours" He didn't know when or if the sacred marriage would come in him, ... but his heart felt full at the moment and he was at least temporarily reconciled with the fact that one 'could not rush love'. He went over to the CD player and punched a few buttons, ... waiting for the now familiar voice of Eliza Beth Hill to fill the room, ...
"I am Ongwehonweh, I am Annishnawbek
I am who I am, you are who you are
Call out my name and my spirit will answer
I am Ongwehonweh, be who you are"
 Donald Kunze, Associate Professor of Architecture & Integrative Arts, PennState
http://wgn111.ce.psu.edu/representation/representation.html . See also http://http://art3idea.ce.psu.edu/yale/default.html for a mathematical treatment and literature based modelling of the subject-object boundary problem.
As Henry Stapp, physicist at Berkeley says in this regard, ... in a discussion entitled Quantum Mind vs Classicism and The Observer;
"That [i.e. the quantum view in that our experiences are the basic realities... and that we must simply accept the deliverances of consciousness as the place to start in consciousness studies] was precisely the key move of Bohr and Heisenberg et. al., namely to recognize that science was actually about our knowledge, which is imbedded in our experience, and hence that the correct way to formulate physical theory was as a useful tool for making predictions about our experiences."
 As Michael Gorman says in his book on discovery, ... Kepler would never have bought into Newton's making gravity a property of 'things', and when the same idea started to be applied to electricity, ... since attraction and repulsion also followed an inverse square law, Faraday went against the popular view and came out on the side of the 'container';
"This viewpoint [attraction being a property of matter] had its critics, among them Michael Faraday, who rejected both the primacy of matter and the notion that electricity operated 'at a distance'. The examples of Faraday's problem-solving processes described in this section are distilled from detailed, fine-grained cognitive studies by Tweney (Tweney, 1989a) and Gooding (Gooding, 1990a). "For him [Faraday], fields of force were the primary reality, and 'matter' a secondary or derived phenomenon. To understand his creative life, then, we must acknowledge his position as a revolutionary, as someone who demonstrates the practicality of a world view completely different from the prevailing one, and who does this, not by metaphysical argument, but by a series of compelling experimental demonstrations of such conceptual force that they could not be ignored" (Tweney, 1989a, pp. 94-5).
On August 29, 1831, Faraday found that a transient current was generated in one coil of wire wound around an iron ring when a battery was connected to, or disconnected from, a second coil wound around the same ring. This experiment did not appear 'out of the blue'. Faraday was engaged in a variety of experiments directed at transient effects. Faraday's electromagnetic experiments were part of a larger 'network of enterprises', a term coined by Howard Gruber (Gruber, 1981) to explain the way in which Darwin's diverse research interests connected, and also the motivations for his work. Darwin's work on topics like barnacles and pigeon breeding facilitated the development of his theory of evolution. Similarly, Faraday's efforts to take a variety of transient effects and make them visible were all part of his network of enterprises.
.... James Clerk Maxwell referred to Faraday as a "mathematician of a very high order" (Gooding, 1994, p. 4), even though Faraday rarely used equations. But Faraday did use what he called a 'rough geometrical method', a kind of mental modeling. . . . As Maxwell noted, Faraday provided "a method of building up an exact mental image of the thing we are reasoning about" (Gooding, 1994, p. 21). Kepler provided us with an example of a scientist who translated the results of his own mental modeling into equations. In Faraday's case, the equations were developed by James Clerk Maxwell, whose mathematical discovery played a critical role in the development of Einstein's theory of special relativity. "
 Excerpt from a discussion on Kepler, including a quote from Kepler's original summary of his work, here translated into english at University of Karlsruhe website;
"Kepler had accepted, that he was unable to convincingly prove his harmony theory, but he continued to hold firmly to it. His findings were proof to him, of his theory. It's true that he was unable to calculate the harmonies perfectly, but the values which he had, showed approximatively, his 'mindbroadening relationships'. Thus he wrote the following in his sum-up: "Now, the 'harmony-of-the-whole of all the planets contributes more to the perfection of the world than the single harmonies by twos and the pairs of harmonies by the twos of neighbouring planets. For harmony is, so to speak, a volume of unity. A deeper unity yet is presented, when all the planets form a harmony with each another, as when just two at a time harmonize in a doubled manner. In the conflict of these harmonies deriving from the dual harmonic line-ups, which the pairs of planets form with each another, the one or the other must capitulate, so that the harmony-of-the-whole can prevail." .... One day, perhaps, his theory of the harmonies of the world might still be proven unequivocally."
 As Newton said in a letter to Bentley;
"It is inconceivable, that inanimate brute matter should, without the mediation of something else, which is not material, operate upon, and affect other matter without mutual contact; as it must do, if gravitation, in the sense of Epicurus, be essential and inherent in it. And this is one reason, why I desired you would not ascribe innate gravity to me. That gravity should be innate, inherent, and essential to matter, so that one body may act upon another, at a distance through a vacuum, without the mediation of anything else, by and through which their action and force may be conveyed from one to another, is to me so great an absurdity, that I believe no man who has in philosophical matters a competent faculty of thinking, can ever fall into it."
But Newton had looked at the three body problem in his 'mathematical principles' LVI, LVII and had said; "An exact solution for three bodies, exceeds, if I am not mistaken, the force of any human mind". Of course, when Newton thought of 'human mind' in this context, he was very likely thinking in terms of 'rational function'.
 From Arthur Koestler's 'The Sleepwalkers' citing Kepler in regard to Kepler wanting to retain 'sky influence' in a scientific sense, rather than in the 'astrology' manner it was and is presented to us today; ... "... a warning to certain Theologians, Physicians, and Philosophers . . . that, while justly rejecting the stargazer's superstitions, they should not throw out the child with the bathwater. For 'nothing exists nor happens in the visible sky that is not sensed in some hidden manner by the faculties of Earth and Nature: [so that] these faculties of the spirit here on earth are as much affected as the sky itself. And again: 'That the sky does something to man is obvious enough: but what it does specifically remains hidden. . . . The belief in the effect of the constellations derives in the first place from EXPERIENCE, which is so convincing that it can be denied only by people who have not examined it.""
 Ernest Becker, 'The Denial of Death' "The crisis of modern society is precisely that the youth no longer feel heroic in the plan for action that their culture has set up. They don't believe it is empirically true to the problems of their lives and times. We are living a crisis of heroism that reaches into every aspect of our social life: the dropouts of university heroism; the rise of the anti-heroes, those who would be heroic each in his own way or like Charles Manson with his special 'family', those whose tormented heroics lash out at the system that itself has ceased to represent agreed heroism. The great perplexity of our time, the churning of our age, is that the youth have sensed --- for better or for worse --- a great social-historical truth: that just as there are useless self-sacrifices in unjust wars, so too is there an ignoble heroics of whole societies; it can be the viciously destructive heroics of Hitler's Germany or the plain debasing and silly heroics of the acquisition and display of consumer goods, the piling up of money and privileges that now characterizes whole ways of life, capitalist and Soviet."
Montréal, September 26, 1999
It's a beautiful, sunny, late September Sunday here in Montreal, ... and as I went out to get my baguette and replenish my supply of 'Paradiso Noir' coffee beans, ... I was struck once again, by the diversity in which I was immersed, ... in which the world immerses us. The variety of ethnicities and attitudes seeming to blossom out more fully and more colorfully, in the fall sunshine, ... enriched by the general sights, sounds, taste, touch and feel of the vibrant environment, ... by the giggling good humor of the serveuse, ... on her first day on the job, ... as I guided her to the beans, ... and coached her in the use of the scales and utensils.
Is it really possible to truly understand something out of the context of the immersing environment? It seems to me that that's the essential question for civilization today. Because as we mire down more and more in complexity, ... we seem to grasp more desperately at the straw of rational inquiry in a frantic attempt to understand what's going on, so that we can at last pull out of our dive and rise up and out of our 'troubles'.
But 'rational inquiry', as it has been developed and perfected by western civilization, ... has a fundamental dependency on our ability to make sense out of things by 'abstracting' subsets of the immersing whole, ... and by first understanding these subsets, on the way to understanding the whole, ... of how the world works.
If I shared with you that I was having my breakfast of bacon and eggs in my undershorts, ... this abstracted vignette from my life would appear to be 'understandable in its own right, yes? But if I added that the table I was seated at was in the center court of a Mosque, ... such 'englobing context' would profoundly change the 'sense' of the initial interpretation, ... and if I then said that the Mosque was a set for a film being made here in Montreal, for which I had succeeded in getting a job as an 'extra', ... this further-englobing context would profoundly change the 'sense' of all which had been understood before. When we abstract a subset for rational inquiry, ... what do we do about the never-ending nest of englobing context which profoundly effects the 'sense' of our interpretion, ... of our understanding?
When rational inquiry, western style, ... abstracts a 'problem' subset of reality and lifts it out of the 'whole', ... the immersing unity of nature, ... at the same time, it lifts and detaches the observer from the whole, as well. Where are they then, ... the voyeur observer and the 'objective subset of reality' he is observing? There has to be some reference context for what exists 'out there' in order to study and play with it, ... or we would have no means to describe its movement and behavior. When we took away all the complications of the englobing environment, ... so as to rationally inquire into our subset of interest, ... what did we replace that complex environment with, ... what simplified container does our objective subset now sit within?
.... it sits within an imagined 'space', right?, .... aye, ... there's the rub, ... for in this choice of space what dreams might come? Shall we choose 'euclidian space', ... the 'space of material things removed from the evolutionary force of time', ... 'the most simple of space conventions', as Henri Poincare says, ... or shall we choose the 'curved space-time continuum' of Minkowski and Einstein? In the former, what exists materially within the space and causal actions are all that matter. It is a space wherein direct physical contact is the only mechanism which contributes to shaping the future.
In the latter choice, however, our every move simultaneously effects the geometry of the whole, as in the movement of a ball in the game of pool. Without any physical contact occurring, ... the system is still materially changed because its geometric 'shape' changes and changes in 'shape' effect forward opportunity for all constituents within the whole, ... the choices are no longer the same. The meteor which comes into a synchronous orbit with the earth and permanently eclipses the sun for us on earth, ... doesn't have to touch anything to change our forward opportunity. The photons of light which it is monopolizing are massless, ... pure geometric energy.
Western philosophy and mainstream science has opted for the former, euclidian, causal or 'Aristotelian' view, ... in which there is an implicit belief that we can 'understand the way the world works', ... come to 'wisdom' in Heraclitus' terms, ... through rational, causal inquiry. But there seems to a remarkable shortage of wisdom in the world today, in spite of a thriving science based on rational inquiry. That was the implicit theme underlying Emile and Zeus' dialogue in 'Eco-opportunity and Discrimination', and that the shortage of wisdom was due to the inverted practice of putting rational inquiry in an unnatural primacy over relational inquiry.
Several scientists in the sixteenth century came along and said that the Aristotelian way of understanding how the world works was bullshit. Giordano Bruno was burned at the stake four hundred years ago, in 1600, for insisting on the incompleteness of Aristotelian inquiry. According to religious scholars and Vatican records, the heresy he was convicted of included; "... his belief in the immanence of God in nature; his rejection of all fixed value systems and his advocation of the relativity of ethics; his belief that no object, relation, or event could be absolutely good or absolutely evil, and similarly that no thought or action could be absolutely right or absolutely wrong; and his belief that there are no real separations (only logical distinctions) within the harmony and unity of dynamic nature."
In 1619, Kepler voiced several of the same complaints about the Aristotelian way, ... of rational, causal inquiry, which sought to build up understanding from abstracted sub-ensembles of reality, ... from 'the sum of the behaviors of the parts'. And in condemning the often manipulative interpretations of astrological 'stargazers', he warned against, in his words, 'throwing out the baby with the bath water', ... i.e. ignoring the fact that the container of 'sky' has a profound effect on the sublunary realm of earth and on all of its creatures. An observation which is so apparent as to be almost trivial, ... but which cannot be accounted for in rational-causal inquiry. Yet we know things in the forest are different in the light of full moon, ... when even man can navigate well along normally darkened paths, catching game that he might not otherwise have caught, ... effecting the whole scheme of things, ... of the evolution of things. Can one understand man out of the context of his englobing container of environment, of sky?
Rational inquiry says decisively [and insanely] 'YES', ... since it deals only in real material structures and causal dynamics. It does not deal with interference effects between container and constituent. Rational inquiry does not deal with the obvious fact that behaviors are influenced by information coming from the englobing container which translate into behaviors which lead on to real, tangible physical changes, ... in other words, that real tangible physical changes are 'sourced' by the intangible AS WELL AS by the tangible.
The pressures of 'political correctness' today which protect the primacy of Aristotelian rational-causal inquiry are very powerful. The world is dominated by 'control hierarchies', ... that is the western way, and it falls directly out of this same Aristotelian mold, ... out of the primacy of rational inquiry over relational inquiry. Control hierarchies and rational inquiry are a matched set, ... one sustains the other, ... and in this sustaining of rational over relational, ... the supply of wisdom, .. of understanding the way the world works, ... spirals into deeper decline.
For the stragglers, like a Bruno or Kepler or Darwin or Henri Laborit, who opt not to make their fortunes by pleasing the forces of political correctness and entrenched Aristotelian ways, ... they must nevertheless have their ideas interpreted by 'the good doctors of the church' or the 'high priests of contemporary science', .... and then be judged by the masses after the masses have listened to the euclidian interpretations emanating from the 'good doctors' and the 'high priests', .... doctors and priests whose very identities and power-of-position are heavily invested in the rationalist status quo.
Bruno commented that; "It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people", ... and Bruno's statement is all fine and well (although judgemental in itself), ... but it doesn't get us out of the rationalist 'hole' and put us back into harmony with the relational 'whole'.
From my experience, .... the forces of change, ... for inverting the unnatural primacy of rational inquiry over relational inquiry, ... are, within the western culture, far too dilute [among the adult population who in turn force youth to comply] to accomplish the needed self-swallowing and rebirth into a new larger story, involved in the inversion. One path of optimism which I see, in addition to certain segments of resisting youth, is with the aboriginals, ... the native north americans who haven't entirely lost the tradition of 'relational-over-rational' inquiry, ... who see us and all creatures as being immersed within the container of sky, and co-evolving with our surrounding context, ... rather than as the mechanical product of Dawkinsian 'genes', ... reified notions of life seen as 'bottom-up' machinery, a rationalist view which, though useful as a subordinate tool for understanding, ... in no way give us an understanding of the way the world works.
The aboriginal starts and ends every meeting with an invocation to our environment, ... to all those things which our 'container' supplies which enrich our lives and enable the fullness of our living, ... to the 'web of life' within which we coresonate and coevolve. In so doing, he inverts the sense of every statement he makes during such sharing sessions, ... the 'I' in statements no longer reflects a detached solitary 'existence in one's own right' in empty euclidian space, ... instead, his 'I' statements reflect an understanding that each of us is just one strand in the interconnecting web of life and that what we say and what we do must spring forth from the context of the whole, ... must comprehend the simultaneous evolving actions of the whole, .. and seek to sustain the harmonies of whole-and-part, ... to 'jam' with our enwebbed fellow constituents immersed with us, within the sky-container, ... to 'tune in' to the whole which immerses us and become 'eco-opportunity employers'.
What kind of evolutionary trip are we co-evolving, with the helm manned as it is by the so-called' 'dominator culture' of the west?
It seems that even visualizing this trip is open to the same choices discussed in the essay, ... on the one hand, seeing the trip as a linear progression of stopovers out of the context of the volumetric space-time container we will be travelling within, .... or in the context of immersion in the rich confluence of an englobing, living nature.
There is nothing in Darwin's 'Origin of the Species' which supports the narrow rationalist interpretations which have been made from it, ... such as 'the selfish gene', ...bottom-up mechanical interpretations which consider only causal interactions between the evolving 'thing' and its environment, .... which see evolution in the sole terms of 'survival of the fittest' interpreted as Heraclean win/lose competition, ... and which ignores the ability of all life, including inanimate life, to be influenced by interference patterns emanating from the configurations of 'opportunity' in the surroundings. The co-resonant beckoning of opportunity niches, ... the river beckoning ocean basins, ... the winged creature beckoning south-receding sun, ... the worm-beckoning safe and nourishing refuge or soft, organic earth.
The notion of the geometrical shape of space relative to constituent coevolution is totally ignored in rationalist 'survival of the fittest' models which see only 'things' battling it out causally within the shapeless and inert void of euclidian space, ... and what goes down the tube in our embrace of this sterilizing visualization is the eco-opportunity to 'tune' our authentic self to coresonant opportunity inherent in the shape of our containing space-time, ...to put 'being who we are' in a primacy over issues of contention and conflict with the fellow constituents in our sky-container.
What did Darwin say about the relative primacy of 'rational' and 'relational' inquiry, anyhow? .... with respect to 'understanding the way the world works?'
The opening introduction in his book 'The Origin of Species', give us some clear insights into this;
"When on board the H.M.S. 'Beagle', as a naturalist, I was much struck with certain facts in the distribution of organic beings inhabiting South America, and in the geological relations of the present to the past inhabitants of that continent. These facts, as will be seen in the latter chapters of this volume, seemed to throw some light on the origin of species --- that mystery of mysteries, as it has been called by one of our greatest philosophers. On my return home, IT OCCURRED TO ME, IN 1837, THAT SOMETHING MIGHT PERHAPS BE MADE OUT ON THIS QUESTION BY PATIENTLY ACCUMULATING AND REFLECTING ON ALL SORTS OF FACTS WHICH COULD POSSIBLY HAVE ANY BEARING ON IT. After five years' work I allowed myself to speculate on the subject, and draw up some short notes; these I enlarged in 1844 into a sketch of the conclusions, which then seemed to me probable: from that period to the present day I have steadily pursued the same object. I hope that I may give them to show that I have not been hasty in coming to a decision."
Far from adopting a 'rational inquiry' approach, Darwin is describing the relational 'bootstrapping' approach to inquiry which he has chosen as the means of 'understanding the way the world works'.
When Darwin embraces the notion that; "... something might perhaps be made out on this question by patiently accumulating and reflecting on all sorts of facts which could possibly have any bearing on it", ... he is choosing the same path that Einstein chose to discover the theory of relativity and to visualize curved space-time,.... "bringing an abundance of real and imaginary experiences into connection in the mind".
As Michael Gorman says in his book "Transforming Nature" ; "As Maxwell noted, Faraday provided "a method of building up an exact mental image of the thing we are reasoning about" (Gooding, 1994, p. 21). Kepler provided us with an example of a scientist who translated the results of his own mental modeling into equations. In Faraday's case, the equations were developed by James Clerk Maxwell, whose mathematical discovery played a critical role in the development of Einstein's theory of special relativity. An account of the interplay of visualization and formal mathematics in these discoveries lies beyond the scope of this book (Nersessian, 1984). . . . Faraday's electromagnetic experiments were part of a larger 'network of enterprises', a term coined by Howard Gruber (Gruber, 1981) to explain the way in which Darwin's diverse research interests connected, and also the motivations for his work. Darwin's work on topics like barnacles and pigeon breeding facilitated the development of his theory of evolution. Similarly, Faraday's efforts to take a variety of transient effects and make them visible were all part of his network of enterprises."
'Rationalist translators of Darwin, such as Dawkins, who fail to appreciate the bootstrapping power of 'networking ideas', miss the mark. Darwin did not see evolution as a 'bottom-up' euclidian logical-causal process which ignored container-constituent-coevolution. Dawkins, in his notions of 'selfish gene' and 'blind watchmaker' is giving us the 'poor pool player' accounting of the game of evolution, ... the accounting which deals with the protagonists' properties and behaviors out of the context of the 'shape of space-time' in which they are immersed, ... the resonating shape, which when tuned against their own authentic makeup, ... determines the spectrum of mutual 'eco-opportunities' simultaneously available to the both of them, ... container and constituent in the inclusionary ensemble of whole-and-part.
We can always fit our observations within the poor pool player 'rational accounting', because it is a contained subsidiary aspect, ... an incomplete viewing, ... of the full curved space-time coevolutionary process. But instead of giving us an 'understanding of the way the world works', ... it gives us 'analytical backfill', .. the story of the subsystem in itself, ... lifted out of the context of the eco-opportunity afforded by the 'shape' of space-time in which it has been immersed.
Darwin made additional revealing comments on his manner of thinking in the 'Historical Sketch' written as a forward to his second edition on January 7, 1860 (the first edition was November 24, 1859), ...as he reviews the incoming opinion on the first publishing of 'Origin of the Species', in the context of the work of others. Within his comments on a number of other research offerings, Darwin quotes from "an admirable paper on the Origin of Species" in 1852 by M. Naudin, a distinguished botanist; "... who believes that species, when nascent, were more plastic than at present. He lays weight on what he calls the principle of finality, "puissance mysterieuse, indeterminee, fatalite pour les uns; pour les autres, volonte providentielle, dont l'action incessante sur les etres vivants determine, a toutes les epoques de l'existence du monde, la forme, le volume, et la duree de chacun d'eux, en raison de sa destinee dans l'ordre de choses dont il fait partie. C'est cette puissance qui harmonise chaque membre a l'ensemble, en l'appropriant a la fonction qu'il doit remplir dans l'organisme general de la nature, fonction qui est pour lui sa raison d'etre."
In english, the principle of finality in Naudin's 'admirable paper on 'Origin of the Species' goes something like; .... "a mysterious power, indeterminate in [inducing, leading to] fatality in some; for others, a providential will, in which the incessant action on living things determines, across all epochs in the world's existence, the form, the volume and the duration of each one of them, according to its destiny in the order of things in which it plays a part. It is this power which harmonizes each member to the ensemble, in adapting it to the function which it must fill in the general organism of nature, .. the function which for it, is its own 'raison d'etre'.
What Darwin is embraces here, and which fits with his container- content- coevolutional approach to understanding [i.e. his relational building of an implicit mental model or 'understanding', ... by bringing into connection in his mind a multitude of knowledge parcels or 'facts'], ... is a vision of the simultaneous unity and plurality of nature (the general organism of nature which is in simultaneous harmony with its constituents), ... brought about by the will to power ['der wille zur macht of Nietzsche'] within each constituent, ... the will to realize one's unique ontogeny harmoniously within the particular context in which one is immersed, ... the same sort of environmentally coresonant power one can feel flowing through native song such as 'Original People' by ElizaBeth Hill;
"I am Ongwehonweh, I am Annishnawbek
I am who I am, you are who you are
Call out my name and my spirit will answer
I am Ongwehonweh, be who you are"
If we are honest, ... we must admit that there is no way to 'understand the way the world works' by means of western style rational inquiry. It is a great tool for mechanical applications, ... but it can never be more than a subsidiary tool with respect to our relational intelligence, ... our basic and simple 'intuitive' intellect which bootstraps our consciousness, our 'container' for thoughts, into place each morning, and which allows us to understand the non-mechanical, self-referential complexities of life.
It's not possible to become one's authentic self by following rational rules, ... by 'controlling ourselves and others', for in the process of controlling, we enslave ourselves. It is by the very process of 'serving others' in a mutually resonant way, ... by serving our fellow immersed constituents of our living container, nature, ... serving them and ourselves simultaneously in a multi-harmonic ecological sense, ... that opens the door to our becoming free and authentic.
We can of course persist, like the poor pool player, in describing 'the game' in terms of the causal dynamics, out of the context of the complex co-influence of the containing environment, ... we can say that we are winning the game because of our superior capabilities in their own right, ... out of the context of having monopolized all of the earth's resources and simultaneously removing opportunity for others. That's the rational causal way to look at it, ... and we seem to like the rational way, perhaps because, by ignoring container-constituent-coevolutionary effects, it allows us to predict things. Clearly, the prediction enabled by rational inquiry is troubled if we immerse the same experiment in another context, ... if we immerse the experiment of our own life in the context of being born and growing up in Rwanda, for example. If we want predictability, we cannot open the door to consideration of the influence of the container on its constituents, ...and tha's perhaps why the 'winners' keep that door closed.
Understanding how the world works is about understanding 'shape', ... the shape of 'space-time', ... of the relationships between container and constituent, .... the shape of eco-opportunity.
When we re-focus on 'shape', it becomes apparent that, ... 'there's no sense in running if you're on the wrong road', and it then becomes imperative, as ElizaBeth Hill says, to; "Look to the sky, ... look to the light in your own eye, ... reflections of, ... affections of, .... directions of, ... 'creation'.
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 'Transforming Nature' (A book in progress by Michael Gorman) at http://repo-nt.tcc.virginia.edu/book/chap1/chapter1.htm
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