Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Integral Studies (3)

Yesterday, I talked briefly about the 2-dimensional approach to interpretation based on the dynamic (bi-directional) complementarity of external and internal polarities.

This leads to the direct realisation that both the physical and psychological aspects of reality are likewise complementary. Therefore a new psychological stage of reality necessarily entails a corresponding new interpretation of physical - indeed ultimately of mathematical - reality.

So rather than just one accepted form of science (and mathematics) interpreted in a somewhat absolute fashion, properly speaking a whole range (or spectrum) of possible sciences exist (of a dynamic relative nature), which are intimately related to corresponding major stages of development.

It was a strong contention of mine that the unquestioned acceptance of present conventional mathematical and scientific interpretation itself acts as a major barrier against the possible emergence in development of the "higher" contemplative stages (with remarkably few in our culture experiencing them to any substantial degree).

In other words through conventional science - and especially conventional mathematics - we are trained to look at reality in an unquestioned dualistic fashion. And such dualistic thinking then tends to dominate our thinking on all issues!

The 2-dimensional approach is in turn associated with - what I refer to as - horizontal integration.

In other words at each stage, balanced development requires the two-way integration of both external and internal polarities, reflecting again both individual psychological growth and a new relationship with physical (and social) reality.

However to properly deal with the relationship as between wholes and parts, an even more refined 4-dimensional approach - in holistic mathematical terms - is required.

Now the 4 roots of 1 - serving as the indirect linear analytic interpretation of these dimensions - are

+ 1, – 1, + i and – i respectively. So we now have four polar reference frames, two of which are real and two of which are imaginary (with real and imaginary having positive and negative aspects respectively).

Real in a holistic context relates to actual understanding that is directly conscious in nature; however imaginary relates more properly to potential understanding that is directly expressive of the unconscious.

In truth, because understanding entails the interaction of both conscious and unconscious, this entails that we properly inhabit a complex world with all transformation in experience reflecting this interaction of real (actual) and imaginary (potential) aspects.

Again conventional science breeds the considerable illusion that we can deal with a "real" world in a merely conscious manner. It then breeds the further illusion that this world can then be investigated with respect to its - mere - external aspect. So once again this represents the linear (1-dimensional) rational approach.

However we have now moved on to a much more refined 4-dimensional interpretation in holistic mathematical terms, where the world is viewed in complex terms with real (conscious) and imaginary (unconscious) aspects, with both possessing positive (external) and negative (internal) directions.

From a phenomenal perspective, the unconscious is strictly ineffable. However indirectly it expresses itself through projections and symbols that signify a holistic - rather than analytic - meaning.

So there we have it! Whereas in holistic terms the "real" aspect relates to the analytic, the "imaginary" by contrast relates to the holistic aspect of meaning. And both aspects necessarily interact in all experience.

In conventional scientific interpretation - and in discourse generally - wholes and parts are given a merely reduced analytic interpretation (i.e. as "real" phenomena).

However the very transition from whole to part (and part to whole) recognition would not indeed be possible without the intervention of the unconscious (in "imaginary" terms).

Ultimately, the pure recognition of the relationship as between part and whole (and whole and part) is of a highly transparent spiritual nature where each part reflects in a unique manner spirit and where in reverse, the whole is seen to collectively reflect its parts (again in a spiritual manner). In this way spirit becomes fully immanent in each part while also fully transcending each whole.

Probably the single greatest and most damaging form of understanding in our culture is the gross manner in which whole/part reductionism dominates both mathematical and scientific interpretation.

So properly the relationship as between whole and part (and part and whole) in any context is as real to imaginary.

Therefore this relationship cannot be properly understood in a merely reduced analytic (i.e. real) manner but properly requires both analytic (real) and holistic (imaginary) aspects. And as we have seen both of these aspects are defined in both positive and negative directions (which are external and internal with respect to each other).

Such 4-dimensional appreciation was then to form the basis of a much more comprehensive form of integration which I will return to in the next blog entry.

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