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Dialogue #55

Prosperity (Feng)

Metaphors: Abundance / Fullness / Profusion


Social Because of the probability of subsequent decline, only a dialogue that acts optimistically without regret can effectively sustain a time of general prosperity. In so doing careful attention should be paid to the enforcement of agreed rules.

Sub-conditions:

1. To engender prosperity through a relationship with those in power, the dialogue needs to temper the qualities of wisdom with those of energetic action for an adequate period, in order to achieve an acknowledged influence. (Resulting in: Conscientiousness).

2. If the dialogue undertakes initiatives, when its relationship with those in power has been distorted by mistrust due to usurpers, action becomes impossible; it is then preferable for it to uphold its principles as an indirect influence that can ultimately have the necessary effect. (Resulting in: Power).

3. When in a role as immediate assistant to those in power, the dialogue does not merit censure if usurpers prevent it from acting. (Resulting in: Crisis preparedness).

4. The dialogue can expect success when it is able to temper the qualities of energy with those of wisdom in a favourable relationship with those in power. (Resulting in: Decline).

5. If in a position of power the dialogue is open to counsel from those of ability, it will accumulate useful proposals resulting in benefit to all. (Resulting in: Revolution).

6. The dialogue may achieve a position of power and affluence for itself, but only at the cost of alienating all those depending on it. (Resulting in: Normative constraint).

Transformation sequence When prosperity declines from its own excesses, estrangement and marginality result from the destruction of relationships. (Resulting in: Marginality).


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Earlier version in 2nd edition of Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential (1986).

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