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Complexification of Integration


Complexification of Integration
7.2 Cognitive systematization
7.3 Wholeness and the implicate order
7.4 Health and space-time
7.5. Dissonant harmony and holistic resonance

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Part 7 of Development through Alternation. Augmented version of a paper originally prepared for Integrative Working Group B of the Goals, Processes and Indicators of Development (GPID) project of the Human and Social Development Programme of the United Nations University (UNU). This document was originally distributed as a separate monograph in 1983. The paper provides a structure linking reviews of alternation as it emerges in studies from a wide range of sources. The paper is in 9 separate parts [searchable PDF version]

0. Introduction / Abstract

1. Monopolarization
1.1. Questionable answers
1.2. Forms of truth
1.3. Accumulative answers
1.4. Developing a new "meta-answer"
1.5. Decodification of analyses of capital accumulation
1.6. "New International Conceptual Order"
1.7. Accumulation and development
1.8. Development of accumulation
1.9. Domains of significance

2. Antagonistic dualities: polarization and paradox
2.1. Oppositional logic
2.2. Polarity
2.3. Paradoxes and antinomies

3. A third perspective
3.1. Beyond method
3.2. Constraints on a meta-answer
3.3. Meta-answer patterning
3.4. Containing discontinuity through aesthetics
3.5. Observer entrapment and micro-macro complementarity
3.6. Order through fluctuation: dissipative structures
3.7. Opening and closing: alternation for discontinuous learning
3.8. Third-perspective "containers": patterns of alternation
3.9. Revolutionary cycles of alternation
3.10. Trialectics: a logic of the whole

4. Threshold of comprehenisibility: a fourfold minimal container?
4.1. Omnitriangulation: interlocking cycles
4.2. Number and time
4.3. Logos and lemma for interparadigmatic dialogue
4.4. Epistemological mindscapes
4.5. Complementary languages
4.6. Nonlinear cybernetics
4.7. Modes of managing

5. Further constraints on conceptual container design
5.1. Cyclic self-organization requirements
5.2. Encompassing system dynamics
5.3. Encompassing varieties of form

6. Comprehension and learning
6.1. Non-comprehension "holes"
6.2. Discontinuity: comprehension and internalization
6.3. Pattern accumulation in a learning society

7. Complexification of integration
7.1. General systems and holonomy
7.2. Cognitive systematization
7.3. Wholeness and the implicate order
7.4. Health and space-time
7.5. Dissonant harmony and holistic resonance

8. Development of comprehension and compehension of development
8.1. Interwoven alternatives: organizational tensegrity and resonance hybrids
8.2. Non-comprehension as a structuring characteristic of a learning society
8.3. Learning cycles
8.4. Patterns of alternation: a musical key from a political philosopher
8.5. Patterns of alternation: an agricultural key from crop rotation
8.6. The entropic crisis and the learning response
8.7. Alternation between energetic expansion and mentalistic reduction
8.8. Uncertainty: the source of meaning
8.9. Morphic resonance
8.10. Toward an enantiomorphic policy
8.11. Game comprehension and identity transformation
8.12. Ecodynamics and societal evolution
8.13. Language of probabilistic vision of the world

9. Implications
9.1. Implications for agreement and consensus
9.2. Implications for action formulation
9.3. Implications for values and norms
9.4. Implications for organizations
9.5. Implications for unemployment
9.6. Implications for the developmental responsibility of answer domains
9.7. Implications for forms of presentation
9.8. Implications for information processing
9.9. Implications for the human self-image

10. Conclusions


7.1 General systems and holonomy

The most deliberate effort to clarify the nature and possibilities of integration has been made through general systems research (84, 85). This has of necessity involved the perspectives of many disciplines. Efforts, such as those of J G Miller (86), have brought a very extensive range of phenomena within the same framework. General systems has not however been very successful in bringing its insights to bear upon the world problematique, despite deliberate efforts to do so (87, 88). Part of the problem seems to lie in the esentially left-hemisphere approach to describing, explaining, and classifying systems. This has not met the needs of those participating in systems, however valuable it has been to those observing such systems.

It is therefore interesting to note the recent effort by J S Stamps to "marry" the insights of general systems research with those of humanistic psychology, as an "integration of conscious systems with concrete systems", in which mind and system are perceived as complementary (89). Stamps interrelates general systems taxonomies of recent decades to provide a "multi-dimensional elaboration of the fundamental principles of complementary process and level structure" which indicates the "limits of integration and transformation" at each level. The final design of Stamps heuristic taxonomy arises from the combination of two ideas which he believes have not previously been related:

"Namely, that the complementarity between awareness and organization can be applied to the distinction between abstracted and concrete systems and theories. A taxonomy with this feature becomes a potential "Rosetta stone" for translating abstracted scientific language into conrete scientific language...(And secondly) is the suggestion that the form and processes of both individuality and collectivity evolve. To the conventional notion that phylogeny evolves and ontogeny develops, I have added the idea that phylogeny also develops and ontogeny also evolves. The importance of being able to make an argument such as this is enormous, for it places the human individual into a context of onthological equality with the many layers and types of human and social organization." (89, p.204)

Stamps makes a deliberate attempt to move beyond Cartesian dualism, especially in the light of research on the bicameral mind. The limitation of this approach, as discussed elsewhere (26) lies in his implication that a heuristic taxonomy does not contain inherent limitations in a society which is increasingly resistant to such hierarchical orderings, whether conceptual or otherwise. Some of these limitations emerge in the work of Rescher, discussed in the next section, where such orderings are contrasted with a "network" organization of knowledge. Ironically, Stamps subsequently co-authored a book on "networking" for practitioners, which emphasizes this other perspective (1).

Stamps uses Arthur Koestler's term "holon" as referring to complex entities, particularly organisms and people, which are simultaneously whole individuals and participating parts of more encompassing wholes (90). From it he names his approach "holonomy" as being a systems theory which acknowledges the place of the human individual. This new term has also been recently used by Bohm in a rather different sense, as noted below.

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