Our Job

Midwifing the Birth of the Next Culture

There are clear signs that ‘we are now pregnant with the next culture’ and since midwives are needed to help with the delivery, there is now plenty of opportunity to participate in that role.

The details are as follows;


The currently dominant western culture is based on the notion of ‘unidirectional innovation’.  This is the familiar ‘causal model’ wherein we assume that the dynamics we see in the world are ‘caused’ by the actions/interactions of local objects/organisms/organisations/systems etc.   This is woven into the fabric of our everyday lives via our methods of organisation, in particular, which are most often based on causal visions, missions, values, strategies, goals and objectives.

This current culture’s view of dynamics is one in which ‘space’ is NOT a participant.  In our current view, space is, implicitly, an infinite empty container (vacuum filled) which does not impede the dynamics of the planets or any other local objects ‘within it’.

If we put a factory in our home town, there will be people who know all about it in terms of ‘what it does’ in a causal sense; how it acquires, transports  and assembles the materials it needs, how the production process works and how the necessary skills are developed to support and maintain it, how the products are marketed, sold, distributed, and all of the associated financial and service and support needs.   All of this knowledge is in terms of unidirectional innovation or ‘what things do’ in a forward sense.  We could inventory thousands of such forward processes in a community and there would be no doubt about our understanding of them all.   But what sort of ‘understanding’ is this?   As McLuhan pointed out, this sort of understanding is all related to ‘content’ and it doesn’t deal with the ‘medium’ within which these ‘content-dynamics’ are taking place.

“In terms of the ways in which the machine altered our relations to one another and to ourselves, it mattered not in the least whether it turned out cornflakes or Cadillacs.”

An ‘understanding’ that is constrained to ‘content-dynamics’ and which does not comprehend how the spatial world we live in is being transformed around us as we keep our focus on ‘what we do’ and ‘what things do’ is a very limited kind of ‘understanding’.  In fact, we could call it a ‘mythology’ rather than understanding.   Because, by focusing on ‘what we are doing’, and by ‘making plans to achieve desired results in terms of ‘doing’, we feel as if we are ‘in control’.  But we are certainly NOT in control of bringing about a desired future state and what we are doing in that regard matters ‘not in the least’ as Mcluhan says, as regards how the space we are in is being transformed.  We can produce the planned measures of cornflake and Cadillacs, and we can use our engineering skills to achieve our planned production of genetically modified food crops, but this will not inform us as to how space we live in is being transformed.   Our forward construction projects could be likened to the project of that group of cells in a developing embryo which is charged with making a gill-like structure.  We may want to believe that our behaviour starts with us and that we are in charge of this explicit mission, but the embryo doesn’t grow by way of the growth of its parts, and the included parts and their relationships are continually undergoing transformation that operates from the outside in on the space they are included in.  While it is convenient to believe that we are in control and that our behaviour originates within us, we are included in spatial-relational transformation that does not depend on any ‘parts’, including us.

We initiates of our current culture are uncomfortable with the notion that innovation is also, and more importantly, being sourced out of the space we are included in, as in the embryo analogy.  But the transforming environment induces transformation in the organisations that inhabit it and entire departments must dissolve and participants assume new identites.  While the ‘fireman’ on a locomotive was the key ‘causal agent’ keeping thing moving forward, the diesel-electric changed that.   The discomfort in conceding that one is oneself included in outside-in innovation is highlighted by the fact that the position ‘fireman’ (which no longer existed in fact) was retained in the diesel electric era.  It is not possible to hold on to this notion of unidirectional innovation when we who pretend that we are in charge of it (that it ‘starts from our notional ‘local agency”) are ourselves subject to innovation [re-definition] from the dynamic space we are included in (both by bio-environmental dynamics and by socio-environmental dynamics)

However, we have found it convenient to ‘see thngs’ in the simplified terms of ‘unidirectional innovation’ and to depict ourselves and our friends and colleagues as ‘local organisms with our own local agency’ (it does good things for our ego to conceive of innovation, and the future we desire, as being sourced from out of the centre of ourselves).  Nevertheless, it is a case of “choosing not that which is most true but that which is most easy”.   To confuse the limited understanding constituted by ‘unidirectional innovation’ for reality is illusion, thus we may better call this current culture world view a convenient mythology’ rather than an ‘understanding.’.

But we are the ones that support and sustain this mythological world view through the culture, treating it as if it were ‘reality’.  Culture  is our way of seeing things and doing things, all of which rests dependently upon our basic assumptions about the dynamics of space and time, the source of our ‘representations’ of the world.

In the western culture ‘innovation’ is seen as starting from within local objects/organisms systems, as in ‘Darwinian evolution’ where the ‘gene’ or ‘cell’ or ‘organism’ is seen as ‘the unit source’ of innovation.   This is key to our manner of thinking, and of understanding the world dynamic.

Just as we believe that we can mechanically modify genes in such a manner that they will construct a revised, more desirable result or product (‘genetic engineering’), we believe that as individuals, we too are like ‘genes’ in that we can mechanically organise ourselves so as to construct a revised, more desirable result or product.

Our science is all about making such ‘unidirectional innovation’-hypotheses and confirming them with experiment.  For example, starting with the configuration of genes in corn, we can modify them so that they will be resistant to herbicides such as ‘round-up’.  Since plants are in general, killed by round-up, when round-up is sprayed on the typical mixture of plants in a field of corn, the only thing that will be left living will be ‘round-up-ready’ corn.

We are that culture that has become expert at unidirectional innovation, creating the results that we desire.

The problem is that space is not an empty vacuum and that nature’s dynamic is better represented as an interdependent web than as a collection of particular things.   Thus, our unidirectional innovating, successful though it may be in its own limited context, in the larger picture is changing a strand in the interdependent web (without our having explored and understood the interdependencies).

The relation between the web and the strand is in other words the relation between the habitat and the inhabitant and/or ‘space’ and ‘matter’ and Mach’s principle captures it thus; “the dynamics of the web condition the dynamics of the strands at the same time as the dynamics of the strands are conditioning the dynamics of the web.”.

This is the ‘bidirectional innovation’ that is the foundational assumption of the incoming new culture.

It is more consistent with our real life experiencing of nature’s dynamics.  That is, while our science of ‘unidirectional innovation’ is good at designing and implementing desired physical structures, it does so in ignorance of the habitat-inhabitant interdependencies involved.   Genetically modified corn has been found to kill the caterpillar phase of monarch butterflies and GM sugar beets remove the weedy fields that have been the nesting ground of skylarks.

Biodiversity suffers from this imposed unidirectional innovation, implying that, in nature, innovation is bidirectional and that the species within the interdependent ‘web’ of the ecosystem is the RESULT of ecosystem innovation rather than the CAUSE of it. (Mach’s principle captures the ‘conjugate’ [simultaneous-bidirectional] relationship of ecosystem-habitat to ecosystem-inhabitant).

Science has limited its inquiry to unidirectional innovation and since scientific experiment is designed to validate or refute a hypothesis, if the hypothesis is formulated in a unidirectional innovation context; e.g. ‘hypothesis: – ‘Genes can be modified to produce wheat that is resistant to herbicides such as ‘round-up’’, then the only thing that is being confirmed by the scientific theory and its experimental validation, is the hypothesis; i.e. a hypothesis based on unidirectional innovation.   This says nothing about the impact on biodiversity and the health of the ecosystem; i.e. it recalls Marshall McLuhan’s observation that what matters is not ‘what we do’ but how our relations with one another and the habitat are transforming.

Meanwhile, within scientific fields of investigation, there has been a rising awareness of the limitations of the unidirectional-innovation paradigm.   In a communication from Douglas Caldwell (author of ‘Do Bacterial Communities Transcend Darwinism) whose experiments have confirmed the prevalence of bidirectional innovation in evolving multispecies microbial communities, he notes that;

“Barry Commoner first realized the importance of the idea that innovation flows not just from DNA to cells but in the other direction as well.” and also that;

“Lamarck’s theory of evolution [bidirectional-innovation-based as contrasted with Darwin’s unidirectional innovation-based theory] has become part of mainstream science.  Check out “The Ghost in Your Genes” (Nova – 2007).  This work resulted (in part) from research on human beings (through the multigenerational effect of starvation as well as from the study of genetic disease occurring in only one of two identical twins).”

Caldwell’s own work extends the application of bidirectional innovation to ‘information flow’ so as to open the way to a more general model that encompasses,  in a self-consistent manner, ‘life universal’; “the nested proliferation of all physical, chemical, and biological objects – including thought, language, and mathematics.”

Regardless of the details of the emerging ‘theory’, there is an increasing incidence of examples that signal the arrival of ‘the next culture’ where there is general acknowledgement of the inadequacy of the (mythological) ‘understanding’ based on unidirectional innovation (‘causal constructions’ etc.) and the greater adequacy of understanding based on ‘bidirectional innovation’.

Since we are the developers and sustainers of ‘culture’, we have the opportunity to get off our butts and participate in the ‘midwifing’ of the new culture.

What we have to remind ourselves of, is this; what we normally think of as being the cause of a spatial dynamic, is instead the result of the spatial dynamic.  I say ‘remind ourselves of’, since it is not coming from ‘belief in a new theory’ but from our real-life experience that we have been ‘over-riding’ (suppressing) with our over-simplified unidirectional innovation-based theory.

For example, think of a situation in which you cracked a joke that caused an outbreak of laughter.   If we ‘zoom out’ and take another look, we can see that you were included in a social dynamic and that you were very aware of being included in that dynamic and that you felt the opportunity to trigger the release of latent energy potentials in the group.   In this sense, your action (cracking the joke) was the RESULT of the dynamic, not the CAUSE of it.  But it is ‘simple’ and ‘convenient’, to start our inquiry from you (the notional ‘local organism’) and what seeming to originate from within you (your own locally originating [internal-purpose-driven] behaviour).

However, you can see something going on here that relates to the notion of ‘The Ghost in Your Genes’ in the Nova production; i.e. there is something that you are included in that ‘comes before’ your notional internal purpose, so that one can’t really assume that the starting influence of your joke-cracking action lies inside of you.   If the buildup of potential energy was not there in the spatial relations in which you were included, you would not have been induced to crack the joke.  One would not try to ignite a fire by throwing a match into the environment unless there were dry combustibles in the environment loaded with potential energy that was ‘ready to go’ (to be released as kinetic energy).

In this context, we can say that the tossing of the match or the cracking of the joke on the part of the ‘inhabitant’ is the RESULT of  the habitat dynamic rather than the cause of it.

There you are and you can feel the buildup of tensions in the social space that you are included in and you just know that with a few words, you can trigger an explosive release of those tensions.  When you do, the group will erupt in laughter so that it appears as if you ‘caused the outbreak of laughter’ but really, the social dynamic in which you were included is ongoing so that your action (cracking the joke) was the result of the dynamic rather than the cause of it.  Those tensions were the spatial-possibility niche that opened up providing a shaping receptacle for the blossoming of creative/assertive potentiality as became manifest in the telling of the joke.   The joke was not a unidirectional innovation born of  ‘first cause’ in the interior of the joke-teller.  This bidirectional innovation scenario is what Heraclitus referred to as ‘the backstretched connexion’ (a conjugate relation in which one conjugate is invisible).  As he said;

‘The unity of things lies beneath the surface; it depends upon a balanced reaction between opposites’ [bidirectional innovation]

‘An unapparent connexion is stronger than an apparent one.’

‘The real constitution is accustomed to hide itself’

‘They do not apprehend how being at variance it agrees with itself [literally: how being brought apart it is brought together with itself] : there is a back-stretched connexion, as in the bow and the lyre.’

The told-joke is the RESULT, not the CAUSE of the group dynamic

The told-joke is the RESULT, not the CAUSE of the group dynamic


The ‘jig is up’ and the unidirectional-innovation that has been foundational to ‘how we see things’  in western Enlightenment society (the prevailing culture) is giving way to ‘bidirectional-innovation’ (as described above).

We are the ones who are the midwives of the new culture.  We can sit back silently and watch it happen, by saying nothing as the unidirectional-innovation precepts of the old culture continue to be used to formulate plans that we will be obliged to work within, or we can be outspoken about the inadequacy of such plans and point to the greater adequacy of understanding based on bidirectional innovation.   The system does not have to be actually demolished and a new one built in its place.   Through our new culture awareness we can evolve in the manner of ‘to every thing there is a season and a time to every purpose’; i.e. the new garden can rise up out of the old garden without uprooting everything.

* * *


  • ellocogringo (14 years)

    have you re-written your midwife essay?  I’ve got the original somewhere, I’ll have to go check.  You’re using the word mythological in the urban sense of the word, where logic and rational (top down) are viewed as the “right” way to see things, and irrational and mythical (bottom up) are the wrong way.  The derivation of rational, by the way, means subject to ratios. and irrational means not subject to ratios.  This is why plato omitted the most obvious of the solids, the sphere, (it didn’t have any straight lines)  The words illogical and mythical have so infused our culture that they are seen as the “wrong” way to see things.  (The Aristotelian brain fart)
    I googled logos mythos and came up with this.
    “We humans beings have used both mythical thinking and logical thinking to explain the world around us.”
    “mythology is derived from both Greek words mythos and logos.” 
    This implies centering or balance between the two views mythos and logos. I don’t think that’s really what you’re trying to say. A mythological (balanced) view is the desired. – walt
    It looks to be worth exploring when I have time.  Randy is not an idiot.  Actually I prefer the word centered but it has spiritual overtones I don’t want to convey.  perhaps balanced (between logos and mythos) instead of non-idiot.

    Allowing for that, I think you have an overly optimistic view of the situation. I have a more gothic view. Civilizations collapse, always have, always will. It’s not a gradual upward trend, but a sawtooth, which collapses when resources are exausted. This ALWAYS happens because society is organized for optimization of wealth for the hyper-males rather than a more holistic, all encompassing view of the world. (a mythological/balanced view). Our technology has allowed us to stripmine the earth in a manner such that survival may be at stake for man. When this one collapses, the resources will not be available for another industrial society (or maybe even an aboriginal existance) until the tectonic plates recycle. (that’s a long time)

    The baby the midwife is to deliver may be stillborn.


  • ted lumley (14 years)


    you bring up some interesting points in regard to the word ‘mythology’. i was using the word ‘mythological’ in the sense that ancient civilizations used to explain things in terms of what might be called a ‘Soap Opera of the Gods’. that is, the cause of whatever unfolded could be explained by making up a story in which the gods (as many as needed, families of gods, sons and lovers etc) were the causal agents. what we have done is to notionally infuse god-like powers into ourselves (man) so that our world view is mythology.

    we (mainstream science) impute a god-like (absolute) source of creative origination of ideas and behaviours to the interior of each of us. we call it ‘life’ and we say that this absolute (‘first-cause’) creative power resides within a local centre (of regulation of the internals and intention of engaging with the external world). if the dynamics do not unfold as the complement to our assertive intention-driven actions, we ‘blame’ this on ‘random chance’. this is the ‘guts’ of darwinism, and it is also the guts of our mainstream scientific understanding of dynamics (i say mainstream since relativity subsumes this local material object based view of dynamics).

    newtonian physics starts with ‘local material objects/organisms/systems’ and explains dynamics in terms of externally applied ‘forces’ and/or internally sourced (e.g. biochemical) inside-outward forces. the key point here is that ‘dynamics’ in this view can be ‘traced back’ to the movement of local, independently existing material objects.

    this provides a scientific basis for our ‘mythological view’ of the dynamics we ‘see out there’. it is like the ‘creation myth’ of many ancient cultures except we modern westerners have ‘moved the Gods from the heavens into the interior of ‘local material systems’.

    note that the more fundamental sourcing from ‘field’ (energy-charged space in continual transformation; i.e. the source of continual ‘becoming’) is ‘not needed’ when we build our world view from ‘local material systems’ and their actions/interactions in an implicit absolute fixed and empty euclidian space (when one imputes local material existence, one imputes at the same time, absolute space).

    so, that is what i intend by ‘mythological’; – the notion that the sourcing of dynamics can originate within a local material system, such as the west characterizes human ‘beings’, so that we then have to re-render the dynamics we see in terms of a ‘soap opera of the local-system-gods’. in so doing, we deny that the deeper sourcing is from resonant-energy charged spatial flow (‘field’), the stuff that is the mother of the transient energy concentrations (standing wave flow-features) we call ‘matter’.

    so, we take the ‘great mysterious source’ of all dynamics out of space (the continuously unfolding energy-flow) and we notionally re-install it inside of visible flow-features which we declare to be absolutely locally existing material systems.

    what this does, is to give us a system of understanding which is architected to explain visible observations, but it is a system which fails to acknowledge the deeper, ‘more primary’ role of energy flow. thus, when four hurricanes emerge in the atlantic/carribean, even though they are inherently the offspring of nonlocal, non-material, invisible energy transformation (solar irradiance bringing the atmosphere towards the ‘boil’ and thus inducing thermal-energy-balance-seeking ‘cells’), we apply our ‘calculus’ of ‘differentiation’ and describe them in such terms as if they were ‘local, material systems’ that exist and move about ‘in-their-own-right’, … leaving behind the ‘truly natural’ (nonlocal, non-material, non-visible) sourcing that, as Emerson observes in ‘The Method of Nature’, not only inhabits them (and animates them) but creates them.

    now, it is my impression that a good mathematician could make the mapping between what i am saying here and the comments you brought up about the rational/irrational and Plato going with cubes and linear structure and giving short shrift to the sphere (e.g. lines have ‘slope’ in euclidian space (which is ‘rectangular’) but the slope of the space on the surface of a sphere (the tangent to the sphere) is everywhere different; i.e. it is elusive and only has meaning ‘at infinity’ but not in the ‘real world’ of our experience. spherical space (i.e. ‘curved space’ which has no persisting slope/ratio) is, of course, needed to convey relativity, the ‘non-absoluteness’ that characterizes the natural world we live in.

    so, to build our world view on a foundation of ‘local material objects/organisms/systems’ would appear to ‘equivalence’ to making ‘lines’ (rational elements) foundational, rather than acknowledging the natural primacy of the ‘irrational’ (non-ratio-able habitat), as in ‘relativity’. as mathematicians note, rectangular space is a ‘special case’ of curved space, so that acknowledging the primacy of the ‘irrational’ does not ‘exclude’ the ‘rational’ but instead ‘includes the rational’ as a special (degenerate, in mathematical jargon) case. however, when we start from ‘rational’ and make it foundational to our world view, then we exclude from our understanding, the ‘truly natural’ foundation, otherwise known as ‘the irrational’.

    there is a correspondence here with ‘matter’ (local, independently-existing material bodies) and ‘space’ (energy-field-flow). i.e. if we assume that energy-field-flow is primary and that ‘local material systems’ are a special (degenerate) case, then we can understand that the visible movements of things are a secondary phenomena, but if we assume that ‘matter’ (locally existing material systems/organisms/objects) are ‘primary/foundational’, then we are screwed because we can no longer explain stuff like spatially-extended harmonies or ‘interdependence at a distance’ as is implied in ‘gravity’ which is ‘everywhere at the same time’ (Newton said of those harmonies in the celestial dynamic, that they came straight from God’s hand).

    so, my use of ‘mythology’ is where we impute god-like powers to a centre of intention that we notionally impute to reside within the ‘local, independently-existing material system’, be it the corporation or whatever. in the corporation, we call it ‘the CEO’ and we ante up based on our mythological belief by paying the bastard a thousand times what the average worker gets because, we say, ‘he is where the buck starts/stops’; i.e. if the corporation makes a huge profit, he gets credit for it. is this not a ‘mythology’ of the same time as the ancients used to explain the unfolding world dynamic? there is no mention here of the swirling flowing spatial-relational dynamics, that open up spatial possibility that sucks the products out of his factories, … the fluid social dynamic in which the very notion of his business was once just a twinkle in the eye of society and which pulled his business into existence and which continues to inhabit it. as Ackoff has said, the university was a system spawned by the suprasystem of the social dynamic and to understand it, one cannot simply regard it as a ‘local system’ but one must understand it as ‘flow-feature’ in the fluid-suprasystem-dynamic (the continuously innovatively unfolding social/environmental dynamic. but once one describes a university in terms of its apparently ‘local’ physical/material structures (buildings, grounds) and its departments and faculties and processes etc., (applies differential calculus) and then integrates the processes and how they relate to explain it as some kind of local organisation, then one forgets that this whole differential/integrative analysis is a mere subsystem in something inherently ‘larger’ which is in a condition of ‘continual becoming’ so that there are no measuring/reference sticks to be found there, yet it is the parenting flow of the university. the expedient reference frame that we typically use for the differential/integrative inquiry into the university-as-a-local-system is, IMPLICITLY, ‘absolute fixed and empty euclidian space’. this gives us the impression that the university president is ‘where the buck starts/stops’ while the reality is that the university is like the sand-rose that forms in the desert, as grains shift/flow in the confluence of wind, gravity and e/m fields.

    the mythology arises when we start believing that that the university president, the nation’s president, the corporate CEO, the human self-CEO, is ‘where the buck starts/stops’, so that we build a ‘soap opera of the local powerboating selves’ and get rid of the mysterious field-substrate as the parenting source of dynamics.


  • ellocogringo (14 years)

    My dear Mr Ted

    We’re about to cage this particular cat. Hold your ground, don’t let it get away.
    Mythology ain’t real. The ether is real. (That’s what Plato called the great mysterious). IE neither mythos nor logos is the ether, but merely shadows of the ether. I got in this same argument with Bro. Max in high school. He thought I was crazy too, talking about two minds. Using Plato’s model, inside the skull we have a logos mind and a mythos mind, outside the skull is the ether. (or plug in whatever bipolar model you prefer). There is no notationally infusing, or ascribing to or anything of that nature. THAT IS JUST THE WAY THE MINDS WORK. It’s as simple as that. Just the system we evolved to deal with the great mysterious, or ether, or big hoochie koochie, or cosmic standing wave, or God whatever. We developed two cognizant minds working in tandem, one fast and precise, the other slow and thorough. Whether you choose logos/mythos, Yang/yin, top down/bottom up, serial/parallel, father eagle/mother earth, binary/boolean is TOTALLY dependent on your worldview (imprinting plus what you learn that doesn’t conflict with imprinting.) It’s all the same thing.
    There’s a lot less cats than is apparent. walt

  • ted lumley (14 years)


    you hold your models very confidently and that’s great. the (bipolar) stuff in the middle is all up for grabs as far as i can see, so i wouldn’t quibble about the middle stuff, if there is scope for us to come to the same understanding.

    the triadic relation, we have in common, and i don’t ‘mind’ how you are describing it, although your use of ‘mind’ seems somewhat ambiguous. i would use ‘awareness’ for the whole ball of wax and that would go deeper than our ‘conscious thought’ (e.g. as when we sleep and dream etc.).

    i agree that ‘thought’ comes in two flavours which seem to be in opposition, and that our inclusion in the ether is ‘more primary’ than either of the two forms of thought. in my view, these two forms of thought differ by the positioning of the virtual ‘centre of intention’ that directs behaviour. we can put it in ‘the whole mess’ as in the Gaia hypothesis (holism) or we can put it in ‘the local organism’ (parts-based logic). similarly we can put it in the genes inside of cells or we can put it in the collective of cells we call the organism (leading to ambiguity whether the selfish genes are the primary driver or the selfish organism is the primary driver). socialism corresponds to the gaia hypothesis (the self-interest of the whole collective is seen as naturally prevailing. while capitalism corresponds to seeing the self-interest of the individual member of the collective as naturally prevailing). these two views set up opposition between their respective (socialist, capitalist) advocacy groups.

    a storm-cell collective gives some insight into the three views. if there are multiple storm-cells ‘visible’, then we could invert our view of the dynamics and start with the notion that the storm-cell is a local system with its own local agency (capitalism) and it is the actions/interactions of such storm-cells (stronger and weaker ones) that produces the overall dynamic (the still spaces in the atmosphere appear passive and neutral and ‘pushed around’ by the active storm-cells. the socialists have this intuition that everything is related so that the strong drain energy from the weak and the weak can be strengthened when they are supported by the strong, so that the health of the whole collective should be the starting/primary orientation. the capitalists have the darwinist view which says that the strong should survive and we should ‘let go of’ the weak, as it would be against nature’s way (evolution) to artificially support the weak.

    the socialist will say that the weak ‘are that way’ because they have been ‘disopportunized’ while the capitalists claim that the strong ‘make their own opportunities’.

    it is clear that without space as the primary medium, there is no way to refute the capitalist argument, so that the socialist argument is supported only by arm-waving and the socialists will support the weak even if the weak take advantage of this support; e.g. the weak may have a chip on their shoulder whereby they believe that it is ‘their turn’ to live off the labour of others. that is, if there are only ‘causal agents’ in the world view, then these are the only options; i.e. that some people are doing all the work while others are doing less, and that the ‘strong’ get there because they cheat while the weak have to work for pittance while the strong amass all the riches and live like kings.

    this is the way to explain the visual appeareances without having ‘space’ as the parenting medium in the model.

    but, if we make space ‘primary’; i.e. if we make the opening of spatial possibility primary, then the blossoming of assertive potentials (in storm-cells or men) is conjugate to the opening of spatial-possibility (this is how it must be within a ‘fluid’ [energy-flow] dynamic). instead of the strong ones become strong from something ‘internal’ (their ‘genes’ or their inherent ‘moxie’ etc.), they become strong because of their unique situational inclusion in the unfolding spatial-relational dynamic whereby spatial possibility opens up for them (e.g. as when they move from an amsterdam ghetto to rich open fertile plains in california).

    the head-butting conflict/paradox between socialism and capitalism ‘dissolves’ when we allow space to be primary in our modeling. in the storm-cell model we can see that the flow is primary and that the multiple flow-forms, strong and weak, are secondary and that they are features within the flow, thus they are inherently ‘interdependent’ via the dynamics of the medium. Ernst Mach captured this for all space and matter in his principle of space-matter relativity which can be paraphrased; “the dynamics of the habitat (space, atmosphere)condition the dynamics of the inhabitants (material bodies, storm-cells) at the same time as the dynamics of the inhabitants (material bodies, storm-cells) are conditioning the dynamics of the habitat (space, atmosphere)”.

    if we have this view, it follows that we suspend the notion of ‘i’ and replace it with ‘we’ as in the amerindian understanding; i.e. we think of ourself as a strand in the web-of-life or as a ‘storm-cell’ in the flow of the atmosphere wherein we are included in the overall dynamic as the overall dynamic is included in us.

    how should we then ‘behave’? we would not behave as a capitalist, pursuing our own self-interest as if were were all ‘local independent productive agents’ act/interacting on our own in an empty (except for the full collection of local independent agents) operating theatre. and, we would not behave as a socialist, re-allocating strength from strong to weak as if the source of the dynamic originated fully and solely from the collective and its members.

    we should behave like the wildgeese who realize that there are resonances in the conjugate habitat-inhabitant dynamic relation that can be cultivated and sustained, and which allow everyone to ‘fly farther and faster for less expenditure of energy than flying solo’. this approach shifts the ‘direction’ of behaviour away from both ‘the individual’ as in capitalism and away from ‘the collective’ as in socialism, by acknowledging that we are all ‘included’ in something that is ‘more primary’ than either us as individuals or we as a collective.

    that is, the capitalist will elogize the goose at the head of the ‘V’ claiming that this strong goose is the natural leader whose ground-breaking drive opens the way for weaker followers. the socialist will argue that cooperation amongst all of the members is what is responsible for the success of the geese, and that everyone has leadership qualities within them that can be brought out if they are given an ‘opportunity’.

    in other words, neither the socialist nor the capitalist brings the fluid-dynamic the collective is included in, into the picture. all results are invested in the local causal agents, one way or another; i.e. by the leaders and followers (strong and weak) view of the capitalists and/or by the cooperative teamwork view of the socialists. in both of these cases, the causal agents are viewed as ‘driving through’ whatever they are included in; i.e. they are active agents while the environment is something the resists their passage, that they must push their way through.

    both of these opposing views are euclidian space based views.

    these are what i would call ‘top-down’, the strongest to weakest performer/producer hierarchical view of the capitalist, and ‘bottom-up’, the whole collective or whole interdependent ecosystem-as-producer view of the socialist. the socialist view seeks to answer the issue of ‘interdependence’ while constraining the model to ‘local agents’ (without acknowledging that space is primary and matter secondary).

    if you like to model this using the terms ‘logos’ where i am using ‘capitalist’ (differentiation) and ‘mythos’ where i am using ‘socialist’ (integration), i have no problem, and as you too say; “plug in whatever bipolar model you prefer”.

    meanwhile, where you say that this dual mode ‘mind’ is; “just the system we evolved to deal with the great mysterious” (ether), i don’t believe that ‘man evolved’ (rather, ‘space evolves’) since he, like the storm-cell (where we make the same mistake and say that ‘the storm evolves’), continues to be in conjugate relation with the unfolding habitat and thus we revert to using a ‘short cut’ to speak of the individual as having evolved something (his own local dual processing thinking system).

    notwithstanding our different habits of switching from short-cuts to full context, it seems that we are pretty much in agreement.


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