THE PRIMER PROJECT


An activity of the Primer Group

 

A Special Integration Group (SIG) of the
International Society for the Systems Sciences (ISSS)
originally SGSR, Society for General Systems Research.

and

IISII
INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE
for
SYSTEMIC INQUIRY AND INTEGRATION



Presenting


THE FIRST INTERNATIONAL
ELECTRONIC SEMINAR
ON WHOLENESS


http://www.newciv.org/ISSS_Primer/seminar.html

 



OPENING COMMENTS



Adapted from
THE WHOLENESS PRINCIPLE
Dynamics of Unity Within Science, Religion & Society

By Anna Lemkow

"...an inquiry into the dynamics of wholeness as an all-pervasive principle, by its nature... will demand obtaining as synoptic and inclusive a perspective as possible. one that comprehends to some measure the multi-formed and multi-dimensional nature of existence.

As I see it, we, the human denizens of our planet, are involved in a whole concatenation of mutually-reinforcing developments,. with far-reaching implications for all life on earth as well as for human consciousness. One of these is the unprecedented global interdependendcy of peoples or nations. brought about through modern mass industry, commerce, communications and transpoirt -- developments that were in turn made impossible by modern science and technology. New technology now making its appearence will further intensify societal interconnections. The change that has already been brought is momentous, and its most extraordinay feature is that all the different aspects of societal existence, taken singly and together (including politico-socio-economic conditions, human rights, the quality of the environment, international security and peace), are virtually indivisible. It makes of us our brothers keepers, whether we are ready to be or not.

This globality illustrates remarkably a fundamental proposition of the perennial philosophy. namely that the different dimensions of existence, including the spiritual and moral. the mental, emotional and physical. are inextricably and dynamically interrelated.

As yet the interdependence seem to exacerbate discord, competiveness and conflict among the groups and nations concerned more often than not. Nevertheless. this ubiguitous condition is preceptibly influencing the thinking and behavoir of nations in a positive way as well, if only out of sheer self-interest. The different nations and peoples are increasingly compelled and motivated to support the entire collectivity. In the longer run. unless we annihilate ourselves, the imperatives in our sharing one small planet will serve powerfully, especially in combination with certain other profound trends, to promote and foster a tolerant, broader, more inclusive perspective -- eventually a planetary consciousness...

The other extraordinary and interrelated developments I have in mind are:

+ the present reorientation of science revolving about the probles of wholes and wholeness, whereby science is, for instance increasingly substituting organic models for mechanical models. and shifting from structure-orientated to process-orientated thinking;

+ the way our burgeoning knowledge tends increasingly to coalese;

+ the advent of synoptic studies of world symbology, mythology and religious traditions -- studied that strikingly reveal the transcendent universality of human thought;

+and, in virtue of these various developments the growing perception that religion, philosophy, science, and the arts are mutually harmonious and complementary.

Walt Whitman sang of the Ensemble, not just of the parts, and he sung of all days, not just of a day. In his time, he embraced the Whole -- in his intimitable poet's way -- and looking thus at the objects of the Universe. he found no particle of any but had reference to the soul.

The cosmic process is impartible and mind-prevaded. In our day, science has uncovered this truth ---in its inimitable way. From the cosmos --- the dynamic matrix, the "mind stuff" -- issue alike infinitesimal "particles" and human beings, all capable of intercommunicating, not only locally but also, instantaneously, beyond space/time.

Emanating from and prevaded by boundless Reality, the manifested universe is all of a wholeness, life within life, interpenetrating, impartible. Yet each life is specific and special -- at once unique and reflective of myriad lives.

This is true even here on our tiny planet Earth, swimming in the vastness of space. What are the size and distance when every point of entry can lead to the center here all knowing coverges, where the inner is the outer, and the outer the inner?

Each of us is both unique and a microcosm of the Whole: each is a once scientist/artist/mystic. Hence, each is equipped both to contribute something of value to the co-creation and to unite and be one with the Whole.

Today's emergent but still sorely divided global society obviously stands in urgent need of a common ethic. a universally acceptable ideal and vision by which to live, one that might effectivily foster unity beyond all differences. I believe wholeness is the very idea which fulfills these strigent reuirements -=- that it constitutes the global ethic par excellence. More than that, the notion of wholeness insistently beckons to us, so to speak, from all sides. And inasmuch as wholeness is neither a dogma nor ideology but a living, dynamic, all-prevasive principle, it can be accepted by everyone. That is to say, whereas creeds and ideologies are inherantly controversial, a living principle can never be that; wholeness could not raise objections or offend anyone -- either believers of nonbelievers, scientists are mystics, philosophers or artists. Yet,...this principle-process is profoundly sound on scientific, psychological, moral, philosophical, aesthetic, and spiritual grounds.

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