25 February 2009 | Draft
Engaging with Globality through Cognitive Crowns
3rd Dimension: All-encompassing, well-rounded experience
- / -
of a four-fold exploration. Produced on the occasion of the "coronation" of
Barack Obama (as president of the country from which insightful leadership is
expected in response to global problems) and of the "crowning experience"
of the Davos World Economic Forum (for the instigators and observers of the global
credit crisis and its consequences). [Engaging with Globality
; Dimension 2: Cognitive
; Dimension 3: Cognitive
; Dimension 4: Knowing
Overview of Engaging with Globality
1: Cognitive Realignment -- making points and aligning a target
2: Cognitive Circlets -- learning/action cycles
3: Cognitive Crowns -- all-encompassing, well-rounded experience
with globality through "triple crown" cognition?
of "crowning experience"
clues to embodying globality through "crowning
-- Synergetics |
Spherical configuration of categories | Spiral dynamics
-- Infosets |Self-reflexivity
and recursion | Metadialogue
-- "Polyocular stereoscopic engagement"
and the global financial crisis
-- Dynamics and movement | Knowledge gardening
-- Patterns of aesthetic associations
Organization of memory
4: Engaging with Globality through Knowing Thyself
Annex A: Engaging
with Globality through Playful Re-categorizing
Annex B: Global
Governance via a Double-breasted Strange Attractor
Annex C: Engaging
with Globality through Dynamic Complexity
Annex D: Intercourse
with Globality through Enacting a Klein bottle
This develops the argument of Dimension 1 relating primarily to the cognitive
significance of the circlet. Here the focus is on the potentially more cognitively
significant implications of the crown -- as a developed version of the circlet
or a combination of such devices. It might be described as the challenge of achieving
"cognitive traction" in governance.
Together these parts focus on the challenge of
providing succinct integrative vehicles for significance,
notably as this relates to any existential sense of identity. The focus in Dimension
1 and Dimension
on the challenge more conventionally understood in terms of the knowledge management
required by governance and the governors -- on behalf of the governed. Separately
inadequacies and impracticalities of such possibilities, hitherto considered
realistic, are used to reframe the cognitive challenge for any individual obliged
to order cognitive skills and accessible insights -- where such dependence
on external authority is now clearly unrealistic. A summary of the 4-part
argument is provided separately (Metaphorical
Geometry in Quest of Globality, 2009)
For those "crowned", the cognitive challenge might be summarized as one of
achieving a higher degree of "cognitive traction" on reality in some global
sense. This might be exemplified by the complaint of Tony
Benn, newly crowned
as UK Secretary of State for Industry, who indicated that
he had "all the
levers of power arrayed before him" but finally recognized that, although "he
could pull on them at any time", the issue was that "they were not in fact
connected to anything". The term "cognitive tractions" is notably used in
the arts and theology.
A more extensive introduction is provided in Dimension 1.
Understandings of "crowning experience"
This phrase is commonly used in a variety of contexts:
- First, when Ruysbroeck described that union with God "without mean" that
he considered to be the crowning experience that a contemplative could aspire
to (Jess Byron Hollenback, Mysticism:
experience, response, and empowerment, 1996)
- The structure of the Mass prepares people for that crowning experience,
and the experience of forgiveness is a key part of that preparation. (Fraser
N. Watts and Liz Gulliford, Forgiveness
in Context: theology and psychology in creative dialogue, 2004)
- This course is a crowning experience coming at the end of the program with
the specific objective of integrating knowledge, concepts, and skills associated
with an entire sequence of study in the program. (United Arab Emirates University, Academic
Programs and Curricula Catalog)
- By direct contemplation, he realized mind's profound nature and thereby
attained enlightenment. This was his crowning experience. (Luminous
Mind: the Way of the Buddha, 1997)
- The crowning experience of all, for the homecoming man, is the wonderful
feeling that, after all he has suffered, there is nothing he need fear any
more -- except his God. (Viktor E. Frankl, Man's
Search For Meaning -- Experiences in a Concentration Camp)
- A good internship can be the crowning experience of a student's college
Asphalt Pavement Association)
- For the student,
the defense should be a 'crowning experience,' the ultimate opportunity
to demonstrate his or her expertise after years of research, reporting, and
Mathematical Scientists: Doctoral Study and the Postdoctoral Experience in
the United States, 1992)
- Groups can pamper themselves at small day spas or major spa complexes.
Although the sauna to Finns is a part of life, even a matter of fact, for
your group it can be a unique and crowning experience for your event. (Finland
Convention Bureau, Finland
for Meetings, Events and Incentives)
- When the passion is extreme, suffering may actually be gloried in, provided
it be for the ideal cause, death may lose its sting, the grave its victory.
In these states, the ordinary contrast of good and ill seems to be swallowed
up in a higher denomination, an omnipotent excitement which engulfs the evil
, and which the human being welcomes as the crowning experience of
his life. This, he says, is truly to live, and exult in the heroic opportunity
and adventure. (William James, The
Varieties of Religious Experience: a study in human nature, 1902,
- The experience of enlightenment, reported by saints, yogis, and sages,
shows remarkable similarity from one culture to another. Modern consciousness
researchers are increasingly identifying the 'deep structure', or common
features, of the path to enlightenment and the crowning experience itself.
This pattern is echoed in many aspects of life, from the beginning, as we
struggle to be born, and at the end, as we struggle to die. (Martin Borosan, The
Architecture of Enlightenment, Building Material, 8, 2002,
- Everything Plotinus says
-- points to a crowning experience, what he termed 'henosis'
-- realizing a state of 'at-onement.' Hence, any idea of identifying Plotinus
use of the term 'Nous' (translated as 'intellect' in English) with its narrower,
modern equivalent, would be a fatal misunderstanding. Plotinus leaves no
room for distinctions between the knower and the known, presenting a marked
parallel with Buddhist intuitions. Given the extensive influence that Buddhism
has exerted upon western culture in recent years, it would be a crime to
ignore the fruitful parallels afforded by Plotinus. (Review by
Richard Hunn of Plotinus:
The Enneads, 2002)
- Odell had climbed many peaks alone, and witnessed sunsets from not a few,
but this, he says, was the crowning experience of all. (Francis Younghusband, The
Epic of Mount Everest)
Engaging with globality through "triple crown" cognition?
Triple crown significance: Curiously significance continues
variously to be attached to a "triple crown". As noted in Dimension
is a feature of the Papal
Triple Tiara. It also features in the Swedish
coat of arms and in a wide variety of sporting and other awards (including
the 'Triple Crown' of college diplomacy and the Triple Crown
of Acting). The group Global
Knowledge has, for example, received a newly launched Microsoft award
Redmond's Triple Crown, Redmondmag.com, January 2009).
In it most commonly recognized form, triple crown cognition is a recognition
of excellence (from
the Latin excellentia) in relation to "rising above" the
ability or qualities of others -- offers the intriguing
possibility that ordinary cognition (thereby transcended) might be usefully
indicated by "cellence".
In the light of the limitations of Dimension
2, the cognitive "circlets" might be understood as delimiting
"cells" -- with triple crown cognition emerging
only in 3D. This implies that
"cellence" is an indication of "in-the-box" cognition
-- with out-of-the-box cognition appropriately indicated by ex-cellence and
recognized in terms of a triple crown (award). This offers new implications
for the EU approach to collective
intelligence through its enabling of "networks of excellence"
based on think-tanks (Meta-challenges
of the Future for Networking through Think-tanks, 2005).
Historical significance: In Jewish tradition, Moses is naturally recognized
as having emerged from the shadow of the throne of the Pharaohs to inspire
Jews to move out of their state of bondage. He has been described as having "put
on the triple crown of a prophet, a warrior and a legislator" -- suggesting
quite different modes of cognition, although the "crown" was in
this case virtual. [more]
In the case of the three-crowned Papal Tiara, the first representation is
found in a statue of Benedict XII, who died in 1342. It is not known why a
third crown was added. One interpretation of its Latin name triregnum (meaning
triple rule) suggests that the crowns represented authority over heaven,
earth, and hell.
Curiously although much is made of the double-crowned Pharaohs, reference
to their triple crowning is less common. However one of the earliest feminist
historians, Matilda Joslyn Gage (Woman,
Church and State, 1893) even notes:
Upon the monuments of Egypt... queens alone are found wearing the triple
crown, significant of ecclesiastical, judicial and civil power, thus confirming
the statement of Diodorus that queens were shown greater respect and possessed
more power than kings: the pope alone in modern times claiming the emblematic
The Uraeus, a cobra in
attack position, often formed part of the royal headdress, sometimes as double
or even triple Uraeus crown. It symbolized the sun god's eye.
It is doubtful whether any unusually
enhanced understanding is now held to be associated with a form of crowning
that dates back to ancient Egypt -- whatever faint echoes of such are associated,
through crowning at that time, with an enhanced relationship to the gods.
This situation is however to be contrasted with a masonic ritual asserting:
Man is a god in the making, and as in the mystic myths of Egypt,
on the potter's wheel he is being molded. When his light shines out to lift
and preserve all things, he receives the triple crown of godhood and joins
that throng of Master Masons who, in their robes of Blue and Gold are seeking
to dispel the darkness of night with the triple light of the Masonic Lodge.
(Manly P. Hall, The Lost Keys of Freemasonry, 1976).
In the case of the Rose Croix freemasons, the head of the traditional compass
is surmounted by a triple crown. Given the early association of the USA
with freemasonry through George Washington and others, attention has focused
on United States
presidents who were freemasons, or perceived to be such (Adam Phillips,
US presidents also freemasons, 19 February 2007).
necessarily unsubstantiated, have been made asserting that Barack Obama is
a freemason of high degree. His election as president is all the more significant
given the traditional mutual disregard of black and white masons in the
USA. His references to slavery in his inauguration speech are also significant
as indicative of closure of an historic cycle relating to the darker history
of the American dream -- perhaps to be understood in psychoanalytic terms
as a degree of integration of the "shadow".
Enhanced significance: Irrespective of these considerations,
of interest is any unusual mode of cognition that might be associated with "triple
crowning" or expected
of those crowned in this way. As a person from whom world leadership is expected,
"coronation" might be fruitfully considered as such a triple crowning.
There are expectations amongst his idealistic and enthusiastic supporters
that his cognitive approach should combine those of archetypal philosopher-king-poet.
His rhetorical skills have reinforced such expectations. Commentators on his
inaugural speech were surprised at his avoidance of the poetic style it was
expected he might use -- as he has previously done so successfully.
In a country where faith plays such an important part in politics, and the
perception of politicians, the fact that George W. Bush was recognized as
"born-again" was of considerable significance to his electoral support.
"twice-born" in this way are held to benefit from a form of enhanced
cognition through their relationship to divinity. Many would now argue that
this cognition was seemingly totally inadequate to a presidency that ended
in humiliation -- indicative of a form of cognition from which the world could
ill-afford to benefit again.
The question however is whether more might be understood through this process
and the further enhanced cognition purportedly associated with being "thrice-born"
rather than simply "twice-born". The condition has been variously
recognized as a feature of cultural mytho-poesis as
discussed elsewhere (Web
Resources on Being "Born Again", 2004). It features in:
Norse mythology (Gullveig),
Greek mythology (Dionysos,
Athena), Celtic mythology (Taliesin), Christian references to Hermes
Assyrian mythology (Semiramis), and Wiccan mythology.
Entheogenic implications: Whether or not the pharaohs, as original wearers
of the Triple Crown (notably the triple Atef
crown), are to be considered
as having benefitted thereby from the cognition of the
"thrice-born" (as the masonic tradition would appear to imply),
the unusual nature of such cognition is suggested in a
study by Stephen R. Berlant
entheomycological origin of Egyptian crowns and the esoteric underpinnings
of Egyptian religion, Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 2005).
respect to the design argument here, of particular interest is his presentation
of textual and graphic evidence that the Egyptian White and Triple Crowns
were originally primordia of the entheogenic Psilocybe
Entheogens are psychoactive substances
used in a religious or shamanic context or outside such structures. He
stresses how entheogenic plants can affect the user's
world view and how they have traditionally been used ritualistically to
commune with ancestors who,
in many cases, were deities. He contrasts the regard in which ancients
Egyptians held the effects induced by psychotropic plants with the implicit
tendency of Egyptologists to regard such substances
disdainfully -- thus introducing a cultural
bias in the review of widely available evidence. Berlant argues that:
there are grounds for believing that the Pharaohs - who also served
as high sem, or herbal, priests - were essentially shamanic herbalists,
whose well-documented belief in their own divinity and immortality was induced
by Psilocybe cubensis ingestion, and that these monarchs then paid homage
to the Psilocybe cubensis, first by wearing various stages of it on their
heads and, later, by wearing representations of those stages as crowns.
Cognition appropriate to global challenges: Nothing is however said about
the way in which such substances enabled the pharaohs (as wearers of the
Triple Crown) to be cognitively empowered to see and engage with the world
otherwise -- or any disciplines associated with doing so.
More might be expected in this respect from the Pope, wearer of the Triple
Tiara -- although many would argue that, under the papacy,
the Catholic Church has failed (as with George W. Bush) to exhibit a mode
of cognition appropriately responsive to the global challenge. The declarations Urbi
et Orbi are presumably a measure of this.
The binary logic ("you
are either with us or against us"), used to reinforce unfruitful
good/evil polarization and demonization, has undermined the emergence of
new and more appropriate modes of cognition. Given their acknowledged association
with power and finance in a global society, to the extent that freemasons
of high degree are characterized by some form of thrice-born insight (as
seemingly implied above), it is appropriate to ask to what extent such
insights are fruitfully applied in response to the dramatic challenges
of the times, most notably through the influential World Economic Forum
of a Global Misleadership Council: misleading as vital to governance of the
Indigenous insight: With respect to the knowledge derived from entheogens
in a shamanic context, especially valuable is the anthropological work
Cosmic Serpent: DNA and the origins of knowledge, 1999; Intelligence
in Nature: an inquiry into knowledge, 2005). The sense in which DNA
may be understood as a "coiled, coiled, coil" is suggestive of
a higher order of self-reflexivity (discussed below***) that may be associated
with being thrice-born (DNA
Supercoiling as a Pattern for Understanding Psycho-social Twistedness,
Undoubtedly modern explorers of such psychedelic substances would
claim analogous insights, as argued by Myron Stolaroff (Misreported
They mainly function
to open the door to the unconscious mind, which can expose an enormous
range of possible experiences. This includes repressed psychic material
and the release of a wide range of positive functions, including intuition,
creativity, and the crowning experience of directly perceiving the ultimate
nature of reality. It is possible to discover the Divine nature of all
of creation, and even achieve the most cherished experience possible
to mankind, direct union with the Godhead.
However it is not apparent how
these have contributed to more appropriate responses to the emerging challenges
of global governance.
|Knowledge of the "thrice-born"?
The knowledge of God is the wisdom of man
This is the end of Being, wisdom ; this
Of wisdom, action ; and of action, rest ;
And of rest, bliss ; that by experience sage
Of good and ill, the diametric powers
Which thwart the world, the thrice-born might discern
That death divine alone can perfect both,
The mediate and initiate ; that between
The Deity and nothing, nothing is.
(Knowledge, Philip James Bailey, 1816-1902
Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse)
Potential clues to embodying globality through "crowning
Further exploration is necessarily constrained by the concern implied
in the title of a later work by Gregory
Bateson and Mary
Catherine Bateson (Angels Fear: towards
an epistemology of the sacred, 1987). Nevertheless it seems vital -- if
only as an act of imagination -- to explore possible ways of understanding
the mode of cognition that might prove essential to the challenges of governance
at this time. This is especially the case in the light of the recognition
accorded to divinity in any coronation process.
The discussion in Dimension
2 of Enabling designs
of cognitive circlets and crowns provides a range of clues.
However, although helpful in some respects, the suggestions
highlight the need to seek greater understanding of the nature of the "crowning
its articulation, and of how it might be brought into "focus" --
if a visual metaphor is indeed appropriate (Strategic
Challenge of Polysensorial Knowledge: bringing the "elephant" into "focus",
In considering the cognitive and epistemological nature of the challenge,
it would seem to be a fundamental error to neglect
the subtleties, paradoxes and complexity of the most sophisticated conceptualization
that humanity has engendered. If the most complex theories of
physics and cosmology are so vitally significant (primarily as a consequence
of their beauty and elegance) to global comprehension of the universe (a
Theory of Everything),
how is it that they are held to be so irrelevant to comprehension and governance
of the psycho-social universe -- both by those who formulate them and by
those faced with the challenge of global governance? If it does not
have equivalent characteristics, why should it be considered of requisitely
adequate richness to encompass globality or be of appropriate elegance
to be comprehensible, memorable and susceptible to communication?
One important point of departure is the recognition by R.
Buckminster Fuller (Synergetics: explorations
in the geometry of thinking, 1975/1979) that a
minimum of three interlocking circles are necessary to constitute
a system -- whose "global" nature is implicit in the resulting
approximation to a sphere in 3D. In the light of the above, these may be
understood as cycles, possibly represented by circlets of some kind. This
then provides a basic criterion for shifting out of linearity and binary
logic into a mode in which the complementarity of distinct (even incommensurable)
dynamic loops -- of different "orientation" -- is essential to
the sustainability of a system.
For governance, if each government ministry is seen as responsible
for such a cycle or loop, then ensuring they interlock appropriately constitutes
a viable engagement with globality. It is such a configuration that is
a pointer to thrice-born cognition of requisite variety to encompass, engage
and cognitively embody a global system. There is much to be derived from Synergetics of
relevance to cognition. However, despite the subtitle, the cognitive implications
have not been developed -- although much has been articulated that lends
itself to interpretation. Fuller himself also understood synergetics as
a form of self-discipline.
The insights of synergetics with respect to polyhedra, as constituting
and representing systems, lend themselves to representation of possibilities
of polyhedral governance based on a polyhedral configuration of values
responding to the need for psychoactive engagement (Towards
Polyhedral Global Governance: complexifying oversimplistic strategic metaphors,
of Valuing: psychodynamics of collective engagement with polyhedral value
configurations, 2008). Such engagement with a spherical; configuration
of some kind effectively depends on the cognitive topology taking the form
of a crown.
Spherical configuration of categories: Following from
Fuller's arguments (Synergetics, 1975/1979), a sense of the globality
implicit in the cognition of a set of categories could be usefully reinforced
by appropriate representation beyond hierarchical listing or tabular presentation
Configuration of Categories -- to reflect systemic patterns of environmental
checks and balances, 1994). This has implications for the configuration
of web-based fora (Spherical
Configuration of Interlocking Roundtables: Internet enhancement of
global self-organization through patterns of dialogue, 1998).
The adequacy of the conventional spreadsheet presentation of accounting
details, as the basic instrument of strategic management, could similarly
be called into question in favour of a spherical representation (Spherical
Accounting: using geometry to embody developmental integrity,
2004). Curiously recognition of such integrity may imply a relationship
between consciousness of the management concepts of a "bottom line" and
that of being variously "born again" -- given the challenges of the double
bottom line (socially responsible enterprise management) and triple
bottom line (values and criteria for measuring
success in economic, ecological
and social terms). Comprehension of such "bottom lines" may be associated
in practice with the mutual constraints of interlocking cycles essential
to global sustainability. The case made there for a quadruple or fourth
bottom line (Sohail Inayatullah,
as the Fourth Bottom Line, 2003), or a quintuple (fifth) bottom
line, call for exploration in the light of the arguments of Synergetics.
Such constraints could also be explored in terms of the need for "double
capping" and "triple capping" of behaviours which tend to undermine sustainability.
As noted above, given the fundamental relationship between sphere and
torus, any such investigation could be extended with greater generality
to include the torus (Comprehension
of Requisite Variety for Sustainable Psychosocial Dynamics: transforming
a matrix classification onto intertwined tori, 2006). Links to
related approaches are presented elsewhere (Beyond
the Matrix: becoming other wise, 2007).
As mentioned in Dimension
2, in relation to the AQAL
system of the Integral Movement, its integration
with Spiral Dynamics may
be understood as taking the form of a crown. However the concentric circles
of AQAL are then to be understood as interlinked as a spiral rather than
such as to constitute the basis for a sphere -- as promoted in Synergetics.
There are however interesting transformations between such geometries --
with their cognitive implications.
Infosets: Partially in the light of
the work of Fuller on spherical tensegrity,
management cybernetician Stafford
Beer (Beyond Dispute: the invention of team syntegrity, 1994)
pointed to the possibility of eliciting "infosets"
of "sovereign individuals" (implicitly recognized to be "cognitively
crowned" in their internalization of the pattern of relations with each other
and their preoccupations). He argued :
There are people all over the world, sovereign individuals,
who have ideas and purposes that they wish to share with others. They
do not see themselves as bound by hierarchy (even to their own nation-states)
or committed to the processes (even those called democratic) that demand
the establishment of political parties, dedicated movements, delegations
- or indeed high-profile leadership. These people are the material of
infosets: neighbourhood infosets of thirty local friends, global infosets
of thirty world citizens. Infosets of either kind formulate themselves,
because they constitute potential command posts; they spread epidemically,
demonstrating their redundancy; they interact massively, as is the nature
of shared commitment. It is not a commitment to some shared manifesto,
but a commitment to circumvent folly wherever it is found; it is a commitment
to alleviate suffering; it is a commitment to brotherhood and peace.
This worldwide syntegration does not of course exist. It is a vision.
But although visions may be inspirational, they do nothing much to alleviate
suffering until inspiration is embodied in a plan of action. And if mounting
human misery is the product of a triage machine as I have argued, and
if the triage machine is endemic to the ruling world ideology so that
it cannot be dismantled, then the action plan must circumvent triage
altogether. The aim is ambitions: to start a process that invokes the
redundancy of potential command as the methodology for a new system of
world governance. (World
in Torment: a time whose idea must come, 1992)
This concept has since been extrensively explored by Markus Schwaninger
(Intelligent Organizations: powerful models for systemic
Self-reflexivity and recursion: Hilary
Lawson (Reflexivity: the post-modern predicament, 1986) has
clarified the dilemmas reflexivity implies
for the future, notably in relation to the closure associated with the
sense of globality explored here (Closure:
a story of everything,
2001). Its importance have been
noted in relation to administration (Ann L.Cunliffe and Jong
S. Jun, The
Need for Reflexivity in Public Administration, Administration and Society,
2005, 37: 225-242). Self-reference or
self-reflexivity had been given a particular focus through the work of Douglas
Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid: a metaphorical fugue on minds and
machines in the spirit of Lewis Carroll, 1979).
Elsewhere, as Recursion
and self-reflexivity, it has been discussed in relation
to complexity and autopoiesis,
namely as the process of auto (self) creation that is presumably at the
core of any adaptive reorganization in response to the challenges of the
Self-reflexive Global Initiatives: Renaissance zones, complex adaptive systems,
and third order organizations, 2007; Engendering
the Future through Self-reflexive Group Initiatives, 2008).
A cognitive circlet or torque exemplifies this notion of closure -- especially
as traditionally symbolized by the Ouroboros.
Clearly a higher degree of closure and self-reflexivity is implied by interlocking
circlets forming a cognitive crown. A contrast may then be drawn between
the degree of self-reflexivity of a single circlet and that associated
with their interlocking.
The question is explored as metacognition,
namely in thinking about thinking, considered one of the most important
developments in the contemporary study of cognition (Maxwell J. Roberts
and George Erdos, Strategy
Selection and Metacognition, Educational
Psychology, 13, 3 and 4, 1993, pp. 259-266). Metacognition
is then knowledge (as awareness) of one's cognitive processes and the efficient
use of this self-awareness to self-regulate these cognitive processes.
As a field of psychology of importance to learning processes, it is the
focus of the
Association for Metacognition. It is traditionally defined
as the knowledge and experiences that people have (or are able to develop)
about their own cognitive processes and as such -- beyond the preoccupations
of psychology -- is a focus of many spiritual disciplines in the East (yoga)
and West which would have different terms to describe it (commonly associated
with the injunction Know Thyself). Metacomprehension is a form of metacognition
that involves knowledge and consciousness of strategies employed by a learner
to comprehend information while receiving it. Metamemory is a feature of
metacognition concerned with the process of deciding about the adequacy
of information acquisition and retention.
The recursive dimension is evident in references in the literature to
"meta-metacognition" (cf Christopher Andersen, A
Theoretical framework for examining peer collaboration in preservice teacher
education, 2000). As argued by Stephanie
Pieschl, most theoretical
models of epistemological beliefs (namely beliefs about the nature
of knowledge and knowing) agree that they are related to metacognitive
processes, that they are probably even 'meta-metacognition',
but very little is known about the exact processes of how epistemological
beliefs might influence metacognition or self-regulated learning. Curiously,
in the light of the circlet focus of this exploration, the newly launched
Centre for Innovation and Research in Cognition, Learning, and Teaching
is known by its acronym CIRCLETS.
Sphereland cognition?: With respect to Dimension
2, the crown re-cognition of this Dimension 3
might be understood as offering a global sense of the strategic perspective
of the systemic articulations of the "planar world" -- especially as "plans".
Although not in strategic terms, or with any reference to globality, the
interface between Dimension 2 and Dimension 3 has been extensively explored
in several well-known works and/or films by mathematicians (Edwin Abbott
Abbott, Flatland: a
romance of many dimensions, 1884; Charles Howard Hinton, An
Episode on Flatland: or how a plain folk discovered the third dimension,
1907; Dionys Burger, Sphereland,
1965); A. K. Dewdney, The
Planiverse, 1984; Ian
2001). In Irresponsible
Dependence on a Flat Earth Mentality -- in response to global governance
the strategic significance of Dimension 3 has been contrasted elsewhere with
the "flatland" understanding of globality of Thomas
L. Friedman (The
World Is Flat, 2005).
Such imaginative explorations might well offer insights on the cognitive
inadequacies of current global change initiatives designed in terms of
Metadialogue: As a development of
the argument for argument mapping (made in Dimension
1), this has been
variously described by the following:
- On the basis of recent developments in constructivism and social constructionism, Jürgen
Hargens and Uwe Grau (Meta-dialogue, Contemporary
Family Therapy, 16, 6, December, 1994, pp. 451-462) describe
the structure of meta-dialogue in detail. They propose an
approach that takes self-recursiveness seriously. Meta-dialogue is understood
as an extension of reflecting teams and reflecting positions. Therapists
are seen as experts in interviewing (questioning, asking, and reflecting)
and clients as experts for their different domains (their lives).
- For J. G. Burgoyne. Learning
from experience: from individual discovery to meta-dialogue via the
evolution of transitional myths, Personnel
24, 6, 1995, pp. 61-72(12)) learning from experience assumes
particular importance at times of fundamental transition because inherited
learning becomes irrelevant or misleading. The current fundamental transition
is seen as being from work for the production of knowledge to work for
the production of identify/meaning (mentofacture to spiroculture). The
accompanying transition in terms of learning from experience is then
from individual discovery of personal and environmental realities to
collective meaning making. A process of meta-dialogue is proposed as
an approach to facilitating learning from experience in a way appropriate
to the times. Meta-dialogue then involves sharing and reaching an understanding
of the ways in which beliefs under discussion in dialogue can be believed
to be true or useful.
- For the American Philosophical Practitioners Association (Group
Facilitation, 1999) the facilitator plays a role in third-order
meta-dialogue. This may be may be requested at any time by participants
who seeks clarification about a rule or any other matter governing
the dialogue as a whole. The facilitator is then responsible for
answering meta-dialogical questions but may also initiate a meta-dialogue
at any time, if in his judgement some procedural point requires clarification.
Thus the facilitator of a Socratic dialogue is then to be understood
as like the conductor of an orchestra: he has no explicit voice in
the score, but has a meta-voice in conducting the performance.
- Maurice A. Finocchiaro (Arguments,
Meta-arguments, and Metadialogues: A Reconstruction of Krabbe, Govier,
and Woods. Argumentation,
21, 3, September 2007, pp. 253-268) responds to presentations (notably
by Erik C. W. Krabbe) at the Fifth Conference of the International
Society for the Study of Argumentation (2002) defining a metadialogue
as a dialogue about one or more dialogues, and a ground-level dialogue
as a dialogue that is not a metadialogue. He defines a meta-argument
as an argument about one or more arguments, and a ground-level argument
as one which is not a meta-argument. Presentations at the Third ISSA
Conference on Argumentation (2002)
showed that fallacy criticism consists of metadialogues, and
that such metadialogues can be profiled in ways that lead to their
proper termination or resolution. Finocchiaro describes
five types of meta-arguments and considers the possibility of others.
- In the light of the set of dialectical
rules for opening and closing metadialogues, proposed by Krabbe (2003),
in which the permissibility of moves in a ground level dialogue is being
Albert van Laar (T
he Dialectial Approach to Argument and Argument Criticism,
2003) discusses the possibility of starting a metadialogue at a level
n -- and a metametadialogue at level n+1.
Such a dialogue forms a discussion that corresponds with ideal discussion
behaviour as the discussants themselves view it: it does not contain
any violation of a discussion rule, or so the parties themselves think.
These dialogues are regulated by the rules for (complex) persuasion
dialogue. However, different rules must regulate the discussion that
contains the possibly inadmissible moves and the metadiscussions about
potentially inadmissible moves
- Peter Houtlosser1 and Jan Albert van Laar1. Metadialogues:
Immanent Dialectic Argumentation,
21, 3, September, 2007, pp. 205-208
The emphases of behavioural psychology in exploring these issues contrast
radically with those of spiritual disciplines. A more recent study of Douglas
Am a Strange Loop, 2007) might be understood as an intermediary
perspective. Of particular relevance to global governance are the collective
challenges of any form of metacognition, notably in relation to collective
Learning and the Erosion of Collective Memory, 1980; Pointers
to the Pathology of Collective Memory, 1980). The issues may be
explored from the perspective of the adequacy of futures
Challenges of Integrative Futures, 2008).
The question regarding any wearer of the cognitive Triple Crown, faced
with the leadership challenge of global governance, is the degree to which
the quality of their awareness of their own awareness is vital to a viable
integrative approach. To what extent does Barack Obama need to be a "strange
loop" in Hofstadter's terms?
The strategic challenge of such cognition, of the unknown knowns and the
known unknowns (famously publicized by Donald
Rumsfeld) has been explored
Undoing: challenge of incomprehensibility of systemic neglect,
2008). This suggests the possibility of a three-fold mode of knowing, doing
and feeling that may be articulated into a rich and integrated array of
"Polyocular stereoscopic engagement": The interlocking
circlets which it is suggested here are the basis for Triple Crown cognition
may be fruitfully understood as functioning as metaphorical "eyes".
This follows from the need for such an integrative combination of complementary
approaches as argued by Magoroh Maruyama (Polyocular Vision or Subunderstanding, Organization
The contrasting geometry of this configuration of circlets
is reminiscent of the four (or five) socio-cultural/epistemological mindscape
distinctions described earlier (Magoroh Maruyma, Mindscapes,
social patterns and future development of scientific theory types.
Cybernetica, 1980), notably as extensively
explicated by David M. Boje (2006)
and Michael Caley (Mindscapes: the epistemology of Magoroh Maruyama,
1994) in terms of :
- H-mindscape (homogenistic, hierarchical, classificational):
Parts are subordinated to the whole, with subcategories neatly grouped
into supercategories. The strongest, or the majority, dominate at the
expense of the weak (whether values, policies, problems, priorities,
etc). Logic is deductive and axiomatic demanding sequential reasoning.
Cause-effect relations may be deterministic or probabilistic.
- I-mindscape (heterogenistic, individualistic, random):
Only individuals are real, even when aggregated into society. Emphasis
on self-sufficiency, independence and individual values. Design favours
the random, the capricious and the unexpected. Scheduling and planning
are to be avoided. Non-random events are improbable. Each question has
its own answer; there are no universal principles.
- S-mindscape (heterogenistic, interactive, homeostatic):
Society consists of heterogeneous individuals who interact non-hierarchically
to mutual advantages. Mutual dependency. Differences are desirable and
contribute to the harmony of the whole. Maintenance of the natural equilibrium.
Values are interrelated and cannot be rank-ordered. Avoidance of repetition.
Causal loops. Categories not mutually exclusive. Objectivity is less
useful than "cross-subjectivity" or multiple viewpoints. Meaning is context
- G-mindscape (heterogenistic, interactive, morphogenetic):
Heterogeneous individuals interact non-hierarchically for mutual benefit,
generating new patterns and harmony. Nature in continually changing requiring
allowance for change. Values interact to generate new values and meanings.
Values of deliberate (anticipatory) incompleteness. Causal loops. Multiple
The relation of this approach to that of the Myers-Briggs
MBTI typology is the subject of a detailed comment by David M. Boje
Theory and the Myers-Briggs, 2006).
But whereas Maruyama is relying on a vision-based metaphor, consistent
with most strategic thinking, the argument can be fruitfully extended
through a polysensorial metaphor consistent with human reliance on a set
of distinct senses. In strategic articulation there is then a need
to combine appropriately the cognitive approaches of those distinct senses,
if only metaphorically, as argued elsewhere (Strategic
Challenge of Polysensorial Knowledge: bringing the "elephant" into "focus",
2008). It is this integration that transcends the dysfunctional
disassociation of "cognition" and "manipulation" regretted by George Soros (above) and is
perhaps usefully to be understood in terms of "operacy" as defined by Edward
The idiom of education is that it is enough to build
up the information base and that action is then easy. It is not. The
skills of action are every bit as important as the skills of knowledge.
That this is not recognised in education is a tragedy. For convenience
I have coined the term 'operacy',
which is derived from 'operate' and 'operational' and thus indicates 'the
skill needed for doing'. I believe that operacy should
rank alongside literacy and numeracy as a major aim of education.
In cognitive terms, there is widespread appreciation of stereoscopic
effects to achieve 3D perception in depth and a sense of perspective
-- forming an image in 3D by this means. However, despite reliance on
the vision metaphor, there is indeed a strategic assumption that any vision
is somehow single-eyed or "cyclopean" (Cyclopean
Vision vs Poly-sensual Engagement, 2006). The conventional political
distinction between "right" and "left" seldom implies the need for the
stereoscopic effect derived from the integration of the contrasting "visions"
obtained through those perspectives -- although supposedly it is the essential
merit of democratic debate and of bipartisan initiatives in response
to crisis. A related case has been made from a theological perspective
(John A T Robinson, Truth
is Two-eyed, 1979). A more realistic
sense of the need to integrate multiple perspectives is associated in practice
with processes to interrelate the contrasting claims of stakeholders.
Transcending the perspectives of right and left in this way recalls the
mythological importance of the "third
eye" -- the Eye
of Horus in the ancient Egyptian symbolism of royal power. It
is this third eye, as with the interlocking provided by a third circlet,
that then effectively provides the cognitive integration basic to any crowning
experience assumed to be associated with such royalty. In some Eastern
and Western spiritual traditions this third (or inner) eye is related to
chakra -- leading to the kinds of higher consciousness that is framed
here as such a crowning experience. Curiously, whereas future strategy
development is universally based on the vision metaphor, any recognized
capacity to use a third eye is typically attributed to "seers".
Within the Hindu tradition however, a "crown
chakra" (sahasrara) is actually
recognized above the ajna chakra. Within the agni yoga tradition,
as the Brahmarandhra, it is often referred to as "the bell".
However, as noted above, the more fundamental challenge of cognitive
engagement is implied by associating Maruyama's epistemological mindscapes
(or the MBTI cognitive modalities) with circlets -- moving beyond reliance
on the vision metaphor (Stepping
into, or through, the Mirror: embodying alternative scenario patterns,
2008). The capacity of the contrasting sensing circlets is then better
understood through the dynamic implied by each as a cycle -- perhaps in
the terms developed with respect to the process
philosophy of Alfred
North Whitehead (Process
an essay in cosmology, 1929) and others including Nicholas
Rescher (Process Philosophy: a survey of basic issues,
2000). Whitehead articulated his understanding in mereotopology,
a mathematical formalism combining mereological and topological notions.
It would be useful to explore the cognitive intersections between the associated
geometry of Whitehead and the articulation of R. Buckminster
Fuller (Synergetics: explorations in the geometry
of thinking, 1975/1979).
Reflexivity and the global financial
That the issue of reflexivity is more than
an academic indulgence is remarkably illustrated by George
Soros (The New Paradigm for Financial Markets: the credit crisis
of 2008 and what it means, 2008) for whom a Theory
of Reflexivity is "indispensable" to an understanding
of the financial crisis. He argues that:
People are participants, not just observers, and the knowledge they
can acquire is not sufficient to guide them in their actions. They cannot
base their decisions on knowledge alone. That is the condition I describe
by the word "fallibility". Without fallibility there would
be no reflexivity...People's understanding is inherently imperfect because
they are part of reality and a part cannot fully comprehend the whole...
Logic and mathematics are more precise and objective, but they are of
limited use in coping with life. Ideas expressed in ordinary language
do not constitute an exact representation of an underlying reality. They
compound the complexity of the reality with which people have to cope
in the course of their lives.
Soros indicates that in endeavouring to define and explain reflexivity,
despite the advances of the cognitive sciences, he encountered enormous
difficulties. He points to:
- his efforts to distinguish between thinking and reality,
"whereas what I wanted to say was that thinking is part of reality"
"left out a two-way connection between the thinking of various participants"
- the consequent need to "distinguish between objective and subjective
aspects of reality"
- followed by a need to "distinguish between reflexive processes
and reflexive statements" with the latter belonging to "the
realm of direct interpersonal relations, and those relations are more
likely to be reflexive than the course of events."
Are these to be variously understood as manifestations of dynamics within
circlets, perhaps operating in "AC"
rather than "DC" mode?
Soros argues for a Human Uncertainty Principle given that :
- in the case of reflexive processes "the indeterminacy is introduced
by a lack of correspondence between objective and subjective aspects
of a situation".
- a situation may be reflexive "even if the the cognitive and manipulative
functions operate sequentially and not simultaneously"
- changes occur "as a result of some misconception or misinterpretation
by the participants introducing an element of genuine indeterminacy into
the course of events"
He recognizes the crudeness of the distinction between cognition
of reality and manipulation of it but suggests that nevertheless
... pinpoints a distortion in the way philosophers and scientists
tend to look at the world. Their primary concern is the cognitive function;
insofar as the manipulative function interferes with the proper functioning
of cognition, they are inclined to ignore it or to deliberately eliminate
it from consideration. Economic theory proves the best example...That
is how the assumption of perfect knowledge morphed into the theory
of rational expectations -- a make-believe world that bears no resemblance
to reality. [emphasis added]
Perhaps it is indeed the understanding of George Soros -- as a "strange
loop" in his own right -- that is indicative of the nature of crowning
experience of strategic relevance.
use is made of notions such as "union", "unified", "integrated" and
the like. A set of 633 such concepts was the focus of the Integrative
Knowledge Project. Understandings of them feature notably with regard
to knowledge, to institutional structures, and to strategies in response
to global problems. Curiously the complex of problems -- the world problematique
in the Club of Rome's terms -- is seldom understood as integrated in this
way (although this was a focus of the World
Problems Project). A form of such understanding is implicit in the
globality of an emergent global
a Global Brain: using networks of international organizations, world problems,
strategies, and values,
Design Metaphors: enabling strategic comprehension of the global brain,
In relation to global governance, reference is increasingly made to "global
consciousness" or to "planetary
consciousness" (notably as promoted by the Club of Budapest and the
World Wisdom Council) -- possibly associated with understandings
of a global brain. In November 2008, Global
MindShift made a presentation
to Google on how technology could help accelerate the shift to a global
consciousness. It is however very unfortunate how easily the capacity to
communicate (irrespective of content) is dissociated from the subtleties
potentially associated with the insights which may be so readily communicated.
It is quite unclear at this time how "wisdom" may be fruitfully communicated,
integrated and comprehended with the benefit of such technology -- as discussed
Static Websites into Mobile "Wizdomes":
enabling change through intertwining dynamic and configurative metaphors,
2007). This is especially the case in endeavouring to interrelate the plethora
of strategic proposals purportedly relevant to governance of the globe
-- as explored through the Global
It is curious that understandings of "global consciousness" would seem
to be failing to distinguish itself significantly from swarm consciousness,
as manifested in the often beautiful collective behaviour of large shoals
of fish, flocks of birds and insects. This is successfully simulated in
artificial agents as swarm
intelligence. It has for example been argued that witnessing
the construction of a painting by autonomous robots represents for the
human viewer an experience of global consciousness. Nor is it clear how
either is to be associated with the collective
intelligence inferred from
the collaboration and competition of many individuals whether bacteria,
animals, humans, or computers. Indeed in all such cases it is the emergent
global order resulting from local decision-making that is associated with
The challenge of reframing understanding of "union", in ways relevant
to global governance, has been explored elsewhere (Dynamic
Reframing of "Union": implications for the coherence of knowledge,
social organization and personal identity, 2007; In
Further Quest of "Meta-Union"? Interplay of generic dimensions
of any "union of international associations", 2007).
Such reframing is presumably relevant to whatever may be understood
by the crowning experience appropriate to such governance.
Of particular interest, in terms of the arguments regarding self-reflexivity,
is a more radical appreciation of the "questions" to which governance is
conventionally expected to provide "answers". Given the complexity and
subtlety of the challenge, are there questions of "higher order" as explored
with Questions of Higher Order: cognitive vigilance required for higher
degrees of twistedness, 2004)? Are they interrelated in unusually
significant ways (Functional
Complementarity of Higher Order Questions: psycho-social sustainability
modelled by coordinated movement, 2004)? Such considerations
are especially relevant given the strategic proclivity framed by Myron
Tribus as "There is a simple answer to every question and it
is usually wrong" or as variously attributed to Will
Rogers and H
L Mencken 'There is a simple solution to every problem - and
it is always wrong". This has in turn been variously paraphrased,
for example: "For every human problem there is a solution that is
quick, simple, inexpensive -- and wrong".
If there might be an unusual dynamic to the relation between questions
and to transcending the question-answer dynamic currently so fundamental
to the dilemmas of global governance, this would indeed appear to be relevant
to any crowning experience (Comprehending
Questing in the Union of the Whys: "beyond why", "prior
to why" and
the "end of questions", 2007).
Dynamics and movement: It has been suggested at several
points above that any cognitive circlets are best understood in dynamic
terms, whether as feedback loops or learning/action cycles, and possibly
as basic to a sense of identity. Emphasis has also been placed on the manner
in which cognition of reality is integrated with manipulation of reality
-- necessitating movement. Elsewhere the ways in which it might be possible
to move and navigate within alternative realities and paradigms was explored
-- if they can be identified beyond the metaphoric frameworks in which
people may unknowingly be trapped (Navigating
Alternative Conceptual Realities: clues to the dynamics of enacting new
paradigms through movement, 2002). That study identified
useful clues and guidelines to such movement, notably from a number of
spiritual traditions but also from disciplines of the body that are assiduously
and popularly practiced by many possessing a high degree of kinetic
In particular the study focused on the the possibility of "re-reading"
the clues from spiritual traditions in the light of the disciplines of
movement. As guidelines these may well be vital to what might be understood
as "attitude control" and coordination -- within any crowning experience.
They may also be usefully understood as prerequisites to any process
of shifting attitude into subtler perceptions -- described metaphorically
through somewhat misleading terms such as "ascent" or "escape".
The distinction between attitude control and ascent for an individual (possibly
in a position of power) may then be compared with the various highly elaborated
challenges of launching any vehicle into planetary orbit as explored elsewhere
Alternative Realities -- Astronautics vs Noonautics: isomorphism between
launching aerospace vehicles and launching vehicles of awareness,
2002). Are the challenges of cognitive launching into the "stable orbit"
of a crowning experience to be so compared? (Noonautics
Four modes of travelling and navigating the knowledge "universe"? 2004).
Does the ultimate challenge of global governance involve embodying experiential
cycles in some unforeseen manner, as explored elsewhere (Psychology
of Sustainability: embodying cyclic environmental processes, 2002; Emergence
of Cyclical Psycho-social Identity Sustainability -- as "psyclically" defined,
2007)? In the light of the traditional symbolisation of integrated governance
and the arguments of Buckminster Fuller regarding polyhedra, does the requisite
crowning experience involve what might be termed a dodecameral cognition
reflecting distinct epistemologies -- engagement with some form of dodekatheon (Union
of Intelligible Associations: remembering dynamic identity through
a dodecameral mind, 2005)?
Knowledge gardening: The interlocking
pathways through which any ecosystem is sustained offers a powerful modle
of the integrative possibility of a future cognitive ecosystem as explored
Gardening through Music: patterns of coherence for future African management
as an alternative to Project Logic, 2000). The implications may
be explored through the recognition of philosophers and others that the
ultimate secret of wisdom was to cultivate one's own mind, as noted by
Pierre Ryckmans (The
View from the Edge: aspects of culture, 1996). He remarks that
it is not by chance that we use the same word when we speak both of cultivating
our gardens and of cultivating
As a garden world, Bali may offer special insight through the interlocking
and interweaving of its complex
of calendar cycles -- but especially in
the light of individual cognitive engagement with their integration.
Patterns of aesthetic associations: Reference was made
2 to a "circle of aesthetic associations". Of greater potential
interest is the interlocking of such circles -- possibly to be understood
as the essence of a "well-rounded" aesthetic sense, perhaps the
subject of the allusive references in The
Glass Bead Game (1943) of Hermann
Hesse. The interlocking might be imagined in terms of interference
effects between 3-dimensional Chladni
Cognitively, interlocking aesthetic associations are of course a primary
feature of poetry and other forms of art. Of interest for the crowned is
then the manner in which such "beautiful" patterns may "engage" with any
oppositional "beast" -- understood as an alternative aesthetic style (Poetic
Engagement with Afghanistan, Caucasus and Iran: an unexplored strategic
opportunity? 2009; Ensuring
Strategic Resilience through Haiku Patterns: reframing the scope of the "martial
response to strategic threats, 2006; Poetry-making
and Policy-making: arranging a marriage between Beauty and the Beast,
of Governance in the Year 2490, 1990).
Such possibilities acquire greater credibility in the light of a remarkable
classic definition of poetry from an Islamic perspective by Ibn Qutaiba ('Uyun
al-akhbar, 1964, vol. 11, p. 185):
Poetry is the mine of knowledge of the Arabs and the book of their wisdom,
the archives of their hisotry, the reservoir of their epic days, the
wall that defends their exploits, the impassable trench that preserves
their glories, the impartial witness for the day of judgment. Whoever
cannot offer even a single verse in defense of his honor and the noble
virtues and praiseworthy actions that he claims for his ancestry will
exert himself in vain, even if they were gigantic. But he who bound them
together with the rhyme of a poem, reinforced them with its rhythm, and
made them famous with a rare verse, a popular proverb, and a fine concept,
delivered them from unbelief, and put them above the deceptions of enemies
and made the envious lower his eyes in shame.
However, more intriguing is to imagine such associations
using sound as the basic metaphor. A cognitive "crown" might
then be understood as a bell -- in terms of the cognitive vibrations that
enabled a well-tuned bell to resonate, and from which reverberations may
emerge and by which any overtones may
be sustained. It is possible that this is a feature of the dynamics of
the Sun. It is interestijng, as noted above, that within the agni yoga
tradition, the crown chakra is often referred
to as "the
This metaphor suggests interesting possibilities for reflection
on the function of any "global
especially in the light of the Yellow
in classical China (Simulating
a Global Brain -- using networks of international organizations, world
problems, strategies, and values, 2001).
Organization of memory
The possibilities above all suggest implications for the organization
of memory, whether individual or collective. Whilst shorter-term collective
memory is seemingly increasingly well served by internet facilities, it
is not clear to what extent this is responding to the needs of longer-term
Learning and the Erosion of Collective Memory: a critique of the Club of
Rome Report: No Limits to Learning, 1980; Engaging
Macrohistory through the Present Moment, 2004).
Sets of insights: In Dimension
2, the role of circlets of beads was noted as a traditional mnemotechnical
device. Here in Dimension 3 the theme has been the possibility of reinforcing
such a cycle of memories through interlocking several of them. Arguably
some traditional sets of stories might be understood, and remembered,
in this way (eg Jataka
Tales, Panchatantra, Aesops's
tales). Kinship networks, with
their generational intersections, may well be remembered by such means.
More generally the challenge is how sets of potentially vital insights
are rendered comprehensible and memorable as an integrated whole (Patterns
of Conceptual Integration, 1984).
Technology: The question is whether new technology can reinforce memory
capacity to a greater degree through enabling more complex approaches to
memory architecture. Here the argument would be that what has been externalized
in the past as "memory
palaces" or "memory gardens" might be internalized
through the multi-media reinforcement of intersecting memory pathways.
Furthermore, with respect to the architecture of such "palaces",
it is possible that the application of modern architectural solutions to
traditional challenges of balancing stresses and loads might, by analogy,
enable larger and more memory-efficient structures.
Such possibilities are to be contrasted with governance as it emerges
in hemicycle debating
chambers -- a semicircular, or horseshoe-shaped, debating chamber where
delegates sit, the circular shape being designed to
encourage consensus rather than confrontation, This organization fails
to address the issue of how essential disagreement is to be appropriately
integrated to enrich the outcome, despite the possibilities of any complementary
virtual organization. The implications of circular organization were
discussed in Dimension
Polyhedra: Possibilities with great potential in this respect are those
based on polyhedra, now that there is sophisticated software to manipulate
them and associate text with them (Polyhedral
Pattern Language: software facilitation of emergence, representation and
transformation of psycho-social organization,
2008). The computer application Stella:
Polyhedron Navigator offers numerous interactive possibilities.
The challenge now is to explore means of rendering such structures psychoactive
of Valuing: psychodynamics of collective engagement with polyhedral value
configurations, 2008). Of closely related interest are the spherical
tensional integrity (tensegrity) structures that are based on polyhedral
forms -- especially in terms of their use of complementary compression
and tension elements that could prove vital to ensuring the coherence of
global memory structures of considerable scope (Implementing
Principles by Balancing Configurations of Functions: a tensegrity organization
Geodesic oranization: Such possibilities suggest a form of "geodesic
memory organization" as
the larger form which individual memory might take supported by technology
Static Websites into Mobile "Wizdomes": enabling change through
intertwining dynamic and configurative metaphors, 2007). This
would be consistent with the unexplored implication of the subtitle of
the exploration of such forms by R. Buckminster Fuller (Synergetics:
explorations in the geometry of thinking, 1975/1979). There may be
insights to be obtained from the polyhedral organization of computer memory.
This continues to be explored as a means of increasing computational efficiency.
A geodesic grid, for example, has particular advantages when it comes to
the decomposition of the computational tasks for modern, highly parallel
computer systems -- notably as required for the complexities of global
climate modelling (K. McGuffie and Ann Henderson-Sellers, A
Climate Modelling Primer, 2005).
There is of course the ironic possibility -- with an aging population,
challenged by increasingly severe problems of memory -- that mnemotechnical
innovations of this nature may become ever more essential. Such "cognitive
be as important to an individual in retaining a sense of coherence
and "globality" as to those specially selected for "coronation".
Given the plethora of wise sayings and insights, more fundamentally there
is the issue of how collective wisdom is to be wisely organized for the
benefit of global governance. Indeed, when will global governance gatherings
be recognizable as giving form to cognitive "crowns" -- configuring "jewels
of insight" such as to bring into focus more integrative modes of understanding?