Thursday, February 12, 2015

Holistic Science (4)

As at the earlier level (Band 3, Level 1) an exciting new phase of holistic scientific discovery, with respect to Level 2, now unfolded over a period of about 5 years (from the early to the mid 80's). This entailed as before an amalgam of  Spirituality, Mathematics, Physics, Philosophy, Psychology, Computer Studies and of course Economics (in which subject I lectured at the Dublin Institute of Technology).

In fact I initially had plans to return to an earlier ambition by seeking approval for a doctorate regarding the application of a new dynamic methodology to the understanding of Economics.

However I quickly discovered what little appetite existed in academic circles for a proposal that was by its very nature of a deeply holistic nature (employing novel new concepts).

In fact, I now find it hard to see how truly original work can properly arise in an academic context, where peer-group approval is vital in terms of achieving recognition .

For, if what one is proposing is indeed of a truly original nature, then, by definition, the relevant peer-group will not exist to properly assess one's offering!

So the accepted academic structure for doctorate proposals is heavily weighted towards topics attempting marginal progress with respect to established conventional wisdom (within increasingly specialised discipline areas).

While accepting the value of such research, as a means of continually extending knowledge - though necessarily in a somewhat fragmented manner - the academic system is far too conservative, as the radical transformations now taking place in society increasingly require a new integral vision.  

Though lecturing within academic institutions for most of my working life, perhaps paradoxically, I have always viewed myself as a considerable outsider with respect to its accepted customs and enclosed mind-set. So, I no longer seek "academic approval" for views but rather attempt to communicate with those that can properly resonate with my distinctive position (and who thereby constitute the appropriate peer-group in this context).

Economics, though an important social science, still operates within a reduced theoretical paradigm, that essentially arose as an extension to Newtonian Physics.

So central to the working of  the "free" market system is the notion of the "price mechanism" which supposedly is designed to bring about equilibrium in every market.

However, because of the linear approach adopted, the true dynamics of market behaviour are considerable misrepresented. Thus the emphasis is heavily weighted towards consideration of the external workings of markets in an impersonal fashion (with the internal personal responsibility of those participants in the markets conveniently overlooked).

Then equally, in terms of the second key polarity set, the emphasis in present Economics is likewise heavily weighted towards the quantitative aspect (in what can be measured). However there is equally a qualitative aspect to all economic decisions that again does not receive corresponding recognition.

Thus the preoccupation for example in maintaining overall growth in (quantitative) GDP has blinded policy makers to the considerable recent worsening in the (qualitative) distribution of this GDP.
Indeed the continual failure to address the qualitative dimensions of economic growth is now threatening serious social and political unrest in many countries!

So, in the 4-dimensional model  that I then proposed, all important economic concepts (e.g. markets and scarcity) would be re-defined in an inherently dynamic manner. Thus from one perspective, the (internal) responsibility of those taking economic decisions would be balanced with the manifest (external) behaviour resulting. Equally from another perspective, the quantitative dimensions of  economic behaviour (e.g. GDP) would be balanced with the qualitative effects resulting (e.g. changing distribution).

Central to maintaining balance as between these four aspects was an explicit moral dimension, which would properly underlie every economic decision.

From this perspective therefore, the present attempt to portray market behaviour as merely the impersonal workings of supply and demand (measured in a quantitative manner) is clearly untenable.

Thus, we are slowly witnessing the breakdown in society of an economic mind-set that is becoming increasingly inadequate with respect to the truly global dimensions of decisions now required.

Satisfactorily addressing these issues will require a developed holistic - rather than mere analytic ability - which amazingly is not yet even recognised in formal scientific terms!

Another key personal  area of interest related to the stages of development.
During this time I became increasingly aware of the important complementary vertical dimensions of psychological development (based on recognition of the second key polarity set of whole and part).

Thus the continual unfolding of "higher" stages of spiritual development, equally requires the continual corresponding return in complementary fashion to "lower" stages, where physical instinctive behaviour (earlier repressed) can now be released.

Failure to properly recognise this return to "earlier" stages, leads to a very unbalanced approach, where the emphasis is primarily on the transcendent aspects of behaviour.
Put another way, it leads to emphasis on the "top-down" approach to psychological integration (where one attempts to integrate all "lower" stages from the perspective of the "higher").

However, for balanced integration, equal emphasis needs to be placed on the immanent - relatively - physical direction.
This then leads to emphasis on the "bottom-up" aspect of integration, where one now attempts to integrate all "higher" stages from the perspective of the uncovered "lower" stage (i.e. where earlier repressed elements are now released).

However, though gradually realising the complementary importance of the immanent direction, during the later stages of the spiritual ascent towards unity, the transcendent direction is likely to remain dominant. This then necessitates the need for a corresponding descent (through the same stages) where the immanent direction is appropriately strengthened (i.e. to fully balance the transcendent).

In relations to Holstic Physics, I made a corresponding linkage (that potentially is of considerable importance).

From this perspective, the sub-atomic levels of matter represent the "lower" stages of physical development. Therefore they are in a complementary relationship with the corresponding "high-level" contemplative experience of macro physical reality (where dualistic divisions between polarities are considerably eroded).

Therefore to understand the dynamic relationship as between (internal) observer and (external) observed  with respect to a sub-atomic particle, we must use the dynamic complementary understanding of polar opposites (that occurs at Band 3, Level 1)

Then to further understand the dynamic behaviour of both the wave and particle aspects of such a particle, we now need the dynamic interpretation of the additional set of whole/ part polarities (that occurs at Band 3 Level 2). Thus from a dynamic perspective, waves and particles are real and imaginary with respect to each other, so that when one aspect (e.g. wave) is manifest in a "real" manner, the corresponding aspect (in this case particle) is now - relatively - "imaginary" in nature.

Thus there is an important vertical complementarity involved linking corresponding "high-level" and "low-level" physical stages.

Thus at the "higher-level" one psychologically interprets macro physical reality in terms of the dynamic interaction of opposite polarities.

Then at the corresponding "low-level" one physically interprets micro physical reality in terms of the dynamic interaction of the same polarities.

Thus the present huge difficulty in appreciating quantum physics in an intuitively accessible manner arises from the fact that interpretation is heavily confined to linear i.e. 1-dimensional, rational interpretation of independently existing phenomena (based on absolute separation of polar opposites).

However, true holistic appreciation (that is thereby seen as intuitively obvious) requires appropriate "higher-dimensional" understanding (i.e. in 2-dimensional and 4-dimensional terms).    

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