The Road to Madness

Montréal, December 15, 2000

What is 'holding us up' in the western culture, from transcending the 'mess' we are in, is our failure to acknowledge what is manifestly obvious from our experience; i.e. that our assertive actions reciprocally 'reflect back' in terms of a transformed opportunity space. Meanwhile, all of our management approaches (systems management, business management, governance, law) are based on 'assertive only' considerations. We manage 'actions' but we do not manage the reciprocal transformation of 'actions' induced in our containing space. The 'big story' is the induced transformation story,... it is not what Jesus or Mohammed 'did' in their lives which is the 'big story', it is the transformation it induced and continues to induce. One could say the same with respect meteorite collisions with the earth (inducing climatic change), the principle is a general one, but it is ignored, and ignoring it leads to the 'mess' our culture is in.


The Road to Madness

December 12, 2000

The road to madness, for an individual or for a culture, is paved with dogmatized misperceptions which are embraced as 'reality' and form the basis of inner-outer assertive behaviour engagement with the falsely perceived world.

This is an brief view of 'the road to madness' being walked by our western culture.

Under the influence of Platonic philosophy which referenced to the essences of the assertive agents of reality, the western world came to a major bifurcation point in the 17th century, and took the low road to madness by re-referencing our managing approach from 'intuition' supported by science' to 'science supported by intuition'.

The choice aspect manifests clearly in comparing the science of Kepler with the science of Newton (or rather, the science we took from Newton). A key differentiating characteristic emerges in the realm of 'perception'; ... while the former gives precedence to 'observer-immersing participatory perception', the latter gives precedence to 'observer-excluding voyeur perception'.

1. The science of the western world opted for the precedence of the latter, 'observer-excluding voyeur perception'.

2. As Kepler had pointed out, however, there is some important 'archetypal geometry' regarding perception which we must account for; i.e., we cannot assume the uninvolvement of the observer in what he is observing.

3. For example, an earth observer perceiving the kinetic trajectories of neighbouring planets such as Mars [1] cannot assume that the movement of the object he is looking out at is 'true movement' and use it as a base for calculations and interpretations.

4. The observer could be looking at 'codynamical effects' coming from the 'containing space'. That is, the movement of the observed relative to the observer might be due to NOT to the actions of either one of them or their relationship, but to inductive influence in which they were both immersed. An example would be where the observer and observed were both in canoes being pulled into a vortex. The movement of the outermost boat relative to the innermost boat would then be a function of their positioning relative to the dynamical 'shape' of the vortex.

5. To fail to correct for the 'container-codynamics' and to consider all of the movements of the observed 'neighbours' as if they were 'true movements' would yield an 'observer-dependent' view, and the view of the dynamical system would be different for each observer as a function of his position within the participating containing space.

6. Kepler realized that the in the case of the solar system, the purely relational Sun-observer's view provided the information necessary to reconcile the 'observer-dependent' view from the earth; i.e. in the same manner that an observer at the center of a vortex could advise the two canoe based observers as to how their positioning relative to the 'shape' of their containing space effected their observations.

7. The general principle, then, is that observed kinetics, in the presence of a 'participatory' space, are 'observer-dependent' rather than 'in their own right'; i.e. they are a function of the 'geometrical positioning' of observer-and-observed relative to the 'shape' of the inductive transformation of their containing space. Thus, all observers immersed in a 'participatory' space see 'the same' dynamical systems differently.

8. The question of 'does space participate' becomes critical here, and while Kepler said 'yes', Newton said 'no' and our culture has followed the road chosen by Newton (Relatiivity theory also says 'yes', though many scientists would say that the effects are too small to bother with).

9. Newton's road basically says that 'all motion can be described in terms of the assertive behaviours of things' out of the context of 'the shape of their containing space'. (Actually, that's not what 'he said' but what we 'took away', as 11. shows).

10. But another, more relevant way to look at this same question is; ...'Can the movement of multiple bodies 'coordinate' by referencing to 'the shape of space' rather than to each other? Because 'if' they can, this will give rise to a source of dynamical order which cannot be described in terms of the assertive kinetics of things.

11. Kepler's answer was 'yes' and Newton's was also 'yes' while pointing out that his 'mathematical principles' did not carry that far.

"I wish we could derive the rest of the phaenomena of nature by the same

kind of reasoning from mechanical principles ; for I am induced by many

reasons to suspect that they may all depend on certain forces by which the

particles of bodies, by some causes hitherto unknown, are either mutually

impelled towards each other, and cohere in regular figures, or are repelled

and recede from each other ;" which forces being unknown, philosophers have

hitherto attempted the search of nature in vain; but I hope the principles

here laid down will afford some light either to this or some truer method of

philosophy." . . . Isaac Newton ('Authors Preface' to 'Principia')

12. What is at stake here is an understanding of the way Nature 'orders itself'. The two 'roads' we could have taken are the 'Keplerian road not taken' (at least not by the social mainstream) which says that 'space' is responsible for harmonic ordering and the road taken, which is not truly 'Newton's road' but a road which is characterized by the belief that 'assertive behaviours' without the participation of space are sufficient for describing the ordering methods of Nature.

13. If we have chosen wisely in deciding to ignore the participation of space, our independent observations based on the assertive behaviours of things will not be exposed to 'observer-dependency'. If we have chosen unwisely, and our observations are dependent, in a non-negligible way, upon the geometry of space (i.e. wherein the order we see in space is influenced by the 'shape of space'), then we shall have the 'observer-dependent perception' case and can expect endless quarrels over what is actually going on in the world; i.e. we will have put ourselves on 'the road to madness'.

14. There are many examples in nature which suggest we have chosen unwisely and are indeed on 'the road to madness'. The 'chemical clocks' of Prigogine are examples, at the micro level, of order which is coming from the 'shape of space'. A similar example exists at the macro level wherein an aerobatics team of four aircraft reference their actions to their own joint 'sculpting of space-time'; i.e. three of the team fly together in a common geometric plane and form the base of a triangular pyramid while a fourth 'apex of the pyramid' team-member, flies at a right angle to the plane and penetrates the triangle at the last possible moment before it gets too small and the three aircraft which form it veer away to avoid collision.

15. The effective author of the motion in the examples in 14. is 'space itself' and the motion is characterized by 'simultaneous unity and plurality'. The team 'inductively' opens up opportunity for itself and 'asserts itself' into that opportunity in a cooperative manner based on a shared vision. The same configuration could occur randomly and there is no way of 'determining', by theory based on assertive action, whether it occurred purposively or randomly. If the same geometry were in the domain of business and the team of four were friends, three of the members might contrive to open up an opportunity which was timed and shaped to perfectly accommodate the fourth. Theory based on assertive action is innately incapable of dealing with such situations because they 'look random' (the order is emanating from the 'dynamically transforming shape of space' rather than from structural transactions.).

16. If 'space is not empty' but is a 'participating player' in physical phenomena, then groups of constituents can 'use space' to coordinate their actions, as in the examples above. In a positive sense, multiple constituents can bypass assertive behaviour theory (action management) to achieve a shared vision specified in purely geometric terms (harmony of whole and part etc.). In a negative sense, coordination by a group of players for devious ends can be 'laundered' by using 'the shape of space'. Space-sourced coordination can also occur on a nested basis, as in the case of the development of an embryo (from cells to organism).

17. At the macro level of society, this says that the management of order based on 'assertive behaviours' (i.e. 'action management') can either be turbo-charged or sabotaged by 'inductive behaviours' (i.e. 'opportunity management'), the latter being volumetric and simultaneous and thus transcending the curvilinear and sequential nature of the former. Where the order in the system is 'turbo-charged', it will go unrewarded if the reward schema is based on assertive behaviour, and where the order in the system is 'sabotaged', it will equally go 'unrewarded'.

18. What is going on here is that our consciousness is capable of recognizing geometric space-time archetypes such as the inverting pyramid and we can cooperatively use these space-time archetypes in our relational codynamics to cultivate and exploit opportunity. Prigogine's 'chemical clocks' likely do the same thing on the molecular scale and the capability seems to be general in nature. The EFFECTIVE consciousness of the constituents, of the shape of dynamic opportunity space they are jointly inducing, and their ability to respond in a coordinated manner to this shaping, means that space is a participant in physical phenomena IN A WAY WHICH TRANSCENDS ASSERTIVE BEHAVIOURS since space then becomes the reference ground for assertive behaviours.

19. Referring back to Kepler and the solar system example, what we have here are 'container-constituent-codynamics' as in the case of the solar system, so that observed movement is no longer 'innate' but is correlated to the observer (observer-dependent) in a manner which depends upon space-time geometry. In the general case, there may be many nested levels of correlation between assertive behaviours and the 'shape of space' so that there is no 'special observer location' (corresponding to the Sun-observer view) which sees things 'truely', but the principle remains that viewing things from the 'eyes of the inductive source' will provide a reconciliatory view. This leads to 'holography' theory of Gabor and to the 'sharing circles' of the native tradition.

20. While the perceptual differences associated with the 'road to madness' can be transcended with approaches such as holography and 'sharing circles', management approaches based on assertive behaviours will still be 'blind' to the 'turbo-charging' and 'sabotage'. The solution is to switch to the 'bigger story' of 'managing the shape of space' instead of managing 'actions'. Since 'the shape of space' constitutes the source of 'opportunity' which enables 'assertive behaviours', this amounts to 'opportunity management'.


In summary, as a culture, we are putting ourselves 'on the road to madness' by ignoring the participation of space in the kinetic behaviours we observe, and by 'managing action' instead of 'managing opportunity'. Meanwhile, there is no reason why we need to remain on that road, since we are free to switch to perceptual approaches which take into account the 'shape of space' (e.g. sharing circles) and to 'manage opportunity' rather than 'managing action' (as exception teams and natural ecologies do).


[1] Diagram of (container-constituent-codynamic) distorted observation of Mars orbit

[2] Email Sent: Tuesday, December 12, 2000 1:00 AM

Subject: the common geometric issue in philosophy, science and darwinism

dear all,

what is coming clear to me is the common geometry issues in philosophy, science and darwinist evolutionary theory. it seems pretty simple (after the fact).

the basic geometry issue is that philosophy, mainstream science and darwinian theory searches for the essences of things and what they do. post-heraclitean greek philosophy believed that knowledge could only come from thought and while observation was useful, it was an inferior and misleading way of understanding the world and the place of humans within it. this primacy of abstraction over observations is in full evidence today, ... it is evident in scientific minded people rejecting the obvious observational fact that the movement of things transforms their containing space in a manner which impacts the movement of things. the 'feminine' notion of the inductive influence and 'participation' of space was not embraced.

heraclitus, on the other hand, believed that 'everything is in flux' with the 'aither' being the medium and orchestrating agent, ... everything is 'process' and all views are observer-relative (e.g. the weight is heavy for the ordinary man but light for the weight lifter). that is, he put experience and observation into the primacy over abstract thought with the proviso that the 'big story' of the world was about the invisible processes rather than the secondary tangible manifestations (e.g. even mountains are like waterfalls in slow motion). thus the search for relationships (how all things are steered through all) is where it's at rather than the futile search for essences, and our 'inclusion' or 'immersion' in the aither ('heraclitean field theory?') was a good place to start.

so we have two philosophical views, the heraclitean view of mountains as waterfalls wherein things are 'included in the harmony-inducing fieldflow' versus the platonic view of essence of things and how they assert themselves.

because our western culture does not think in terms of 'immersion' or 'inclusion', the primacy of 'inductive influence' doesn't make much sense. even where harmony-inducing influences are manifest, they are spoken about in such terms as, for example, adam smith's 'the invisible hand' (the invisible assertive force); "Smith demonstrated that a country does not need an overall national plan enforced upon people in order to achieve social harmony. This is not to say that a peaceful, orderly society comes about by accident, or as the result of doing nothing. Certain requirements must be met if people are to live at peace with their neighbors. it is required, first of all, that there be widespread obedience to the moral commandments which forbid murder, theft, misrepresentation, and covetousness. The second requirement is for a legal system which secures equal justice before the law for every person. When these moral and legal requirements are met, then the people will be led into a system of social cooperation under the division of labor "as if by an invisible hand."

the demand (inductive) - supply (assertive) dipolar force seems to want to bring everything into a harmonic balance. but if were not 'immersed participants' we have to think of 'induction' in terms of some 'bizarre' assertiveness of some type or other, such as a ghostly version of the assertive, ... 'the invisible hand'.

in religious metaphors for life, the notion of assertive kinetic trajectory 'in a fragile bark over life's tempestuous sea' is a common one. there is no sense of 'immersion' and without it no sense of 'inductive pull'. the student faced with describing how a sailboat works thinks in the assertive force of the wind on the boat and is stymied when asked to explain why it is that the boat can quarter into the wind at close to the same speed it quarters with the wind. bernouilli's law runs counter to culturally conditioned assertive thinking, .. i.e. that the side of the sail that the wind does not assert into is the over-riding (inductive) force

inductive force comes in association with 'dynamic opportunity space', space which in which each constituent is uniquely positioned, and thus the bringing into equilibrium or into harmony associates with immersed induction. meanwhile models of pure assertiveness can say very little about harmony except in terms of individual sequential harmony. assertive forces 'push on things' regardless of the shape of dynamic opportunity space available to those things, whereas inductive forces pull things into corridors of opportunity.

the omission of immersion-induction in the purely assertive worldview of greek philosophy, mainstream science and darwinian evolutionary theory has no justification in experience as the following indicates, ... thus the failure to take into account the methods of nature in bringing order (harmony sustainable equilibrium) is strictly the product of our western 'abstraction- over experience' 'Platonic heritage', ...

1. there are two ways of perceiving motion, as observer-immersed volumetric transformation, examples of which are pool and the aerobatics 'inverting pyramid', and, ... the observer-excluding (voyeur) curvilinear trajectories of material kinetics.

2. the 'ordering' of the organisation in the immersed case is oriented to a simultaneous response of the team-members to 'the shape of space'; i.e. the 'center' of the configuration is unoccupied but everything is converging around it so as to give it a center (as in the inductive center of a vortex). the 'ordering' of the organization in the voyeur case is oriented to the 'teamwork' of the constituency; i.e. their ability to 'work together' in a 'sequential sense'.

3. imagine we are voyeur observers looking in on the pyramidical clock of the four member aerobatic teams. imagine also that there are many other dynamical objects around and that WE ARE NOT AWARE OF THE PYRAMIDAL FORM. now, when the fourth member of the team 'threads the needle' formed by the other three, how will we know that the agent threading the needle had the same shared vision of the shape of space as the other three? from a purely kinetic point of view, the action looks chaotic.

4. the general problem is this; ... the voyeur view, by excluding the observer, excludes the possibility that the observer, rather than being in a neutral position or 'at the center', is as he looks out, participating in an inductive flow and thus formulates a perspective of the motion of things which is distorted by the assumption that he, the observer, is 'at the center' (rather than being pulled in a flow). this is done by the referencing of movement of 'things out there' to an inertial euclidian reference frame animated on the basis of globally synchronous time.

this is the same distorted view as the geocentric view, which eliminates from one's understanding, the whole and part transformation of space that the observer may be involved in.


that is, if one is caught in a vortical flow, as one looks outward 'to the north', one sees features moving from west to east (i.e. if the vortex is counter-clockwise, then the outer, slower particles will move, relatively, from left to right) and if one looks inward 'to the south', one sees features moving from east to west. in the case of the solar system, the Sun may be taken to be the 'eye' of the vortex which is pulling all of the planets.

the 'copernican revolution' is thus far from over. the entire theory of assertive behaviour OF BOTH WESTERN PHILOSOPHICAL TRADITION AND WESTERN MAINSTREAM SCIENCE is based on the unquestioned assumption that we do not have to account for ourself, the observer, being carried within participating in) a vortical or space-transforming flow; i.e. ... the unquestioned assumption that we can exclude the observer and assume that what we see 'out there' is an 'objective reality'. but all of the motion of 'things' we see, due to our not accounting for the codynamical observer-observed effects, will be distorted by the observer's unaccounted-for participation in coordinated rhythms of the aerobatics team type. in particular, if the observer is participating in several such inductive space-transforming phenomena, his voyeur viewing of an 'objective world out there' DENIES INVOLVEMENT IN INDUCTIVE FLOW PATTERNS. thus, the voyeur 'geocentric' view of the orbit of mars was grossly distorted and was corrected by acknowledgeing that the observer was being carried along, together with the other planets, in a space-warping vortex with the Sun at the 'eye' (vortical center).

THE VOYEUR VIEW DENIES THE PRIME SOURCE OF ORDERING IN NATURE, THE INDUCTIVE-ASSERTIVE TRANSFORMATION OF THE SHAPE OF SPACE, as in the aerobatics example where multiple participants simultaneously 'shape' space according to a shared vision and a shared sense of timing of opportunity relative to purpose.

the kinetic laws of motion of newtonian science are innately incapable of speaking to the issue of inductive transformation of the shape of space, as newton himself made clear in the 'author's introduction' and summarizing 'scholium' to the principia. nevertheless, the inductive transformation of the shape of space is THE PRIMARY ORDERING FORCE IN NATURE with its relativistic self-referencing of individual to group and to natural timing coming from the interpenetration of assertive-purpose and inductive opportunity emerging from the 'shape of space'.

5. denial of the natural inductive ordering in the world as is evident in the implicit 'observer-centricity' or 'observer-neutrality' (non-participation) of the voyeur view, leads one to the false view (cognitive illusion) that there is no ordering in the world other than assertive ordering CAUSED by the application of force/s and this COGNITIVE ILLUSION leads in turn to the development of philosophies on how man should assertively order the world, by what laws of governance and what ethics? again, this view comes from his denial of participation in inductive flow (i.e. as implied by john lennon's 'Life is something that happens while one is busy making other plans' and the ojibway 'all the time i was worrying about myself, i was being blown across the sky by a great wind').

6. returning to the humbler view of being participants in nature, ... i.e. participants in the inductive transformation of the shape of space, gives us an awareness of the need to take into account that our perception of the world 'out there' cannot be interpreted in terms of purely assertive kinetics and must be interpreted instead by taking into account our participantion in multiple inductive flows of the 'aerobatic team' type. this is what underpins the 'sharing circles' of the native tradition, and this awareness is what is glaringly missing in 'plato's republic' and platonic philosophy which is built upon the assumption of a world of purely assertive things, ... a philosophical base which persists to this day, in spite of the ideas of philosophers such as kepler, poincaré and emerson.

meanwhile, man and nature are inseparably bound and thus one cannot begin with a 'theory of man' which is what western philosophy basically is; i.e. 'metaphysics', 'ontology', 'logic', 'ethics', 'aesthetics', 'anthropology', 'epistemology' and 'science', 'language', 'history', 'religion', 'society' and 'politics'; i.e. all of these subjects 'start from' the notion that one can safely 'build' upon the unquestioned implicit assumption that man's perception of the world being an assertive world of things is 'the way it is'. meanwhile, the assumption is not a good one, and where man is humbler, as in the native traditions, he takes it for granted that he is being swept about in the flow and that he cannot regard his view of the world as being one from some 'absolute rock' which does not participate in the flow.

thus, western philosophy suffers from the same assertive-only illusion that darwin's theory of natural selection does; i.e. the dominant role of the (dipolar) inductive influence of space is denied in both of these theories; i.e. both 'man' and 'organism' are inseparable from the inductive flow of space-time; i.e. they are content-ual assertions in response to contextual induction, ... creatures of opportunity which cannot be viewed 'in their own right' out of the context of the inductive opportunity which gives them life.

7. in summary, the relativistic ordering of nature, of the chemical clock and aerobatic team type, is 'inductive-assertive' and does not 'start from' the pure assertiveness of the constituents of space. it is ordering which comes from the constituents having a common 'sense' of the 'dynamic shape of opportunity space' and the capacity to 'tune in' to the natural timing of the interpenetration of purpose and opportunity. the denial of this most basic of ordering principles and the imposing of hierarchical control based order, as in plato's republic and the various forms which persist today, emanates from the 'cognitive illusion' that what we see 'out there' is an objective reality 'in its own right', a denial of the fact that our view is not an 'absolute view' but a view which is RELATIVE to our own unique participation in the inductive transformative flows of space-time.