I wonder if its possible now days to find anyone who could honestly depreciate the interconnectedness between invisible and visible?
This question came to me as I was watching a video from one of the dialogue sessions hosted by His Holiness The Dalai Lama and other Tibetan Scholars, together with many Science Experts from all around the world (Mind and Life XXVI). This video is one of the many resources available in this intersection of spirit and science.
Each time I cross with this kind of initiatives, studies and publications promoting the evidence of this intersection I think about how several multidisciplinary approaches are gaining presence in our world today. Thankfully!
But as I was celebrating this fact I was also visited by some kind of anxiety about how can we gain velocity in spreading this multidimensional perspective across our many societal structures, which we are so much in need to update.
We already have a large volume of evidences contributing to the collapse of many of our ideas of separation. Such evidences are spread among different human disciplines and sub-disciplines, but we continue to operate from models that ignore those evidences.
Recalling that change is a process, which actions should we take to bring it forward?
Maybe our best efforts should be placed in sharing and inviting exploratory journeys to this new levels of understanding about who we are in this world. And we need time and space to run this actualisation.
I bring an invitation to explore some knowledge that may help to stop this conflict between the ethereal and matter. I do this by sharing my delve on how to practice this knowledge.
One of my burning questions on this topic is about which structures could we offer to host the integrative practice and turn us more skilful in this level of understanding of our world. How do we invite people to be fully present in these spaces where invisible and visible meet?
My last 7 years have been dedicated to find possible ways to enable this integration into our work and personal daily life, particularly in organisations, where people spend most of their time. One decisive moment was when I started to study and apply systemic constellations practice in organisations (2010). This inicial step led me to other related transformative methodologies, such as Presencing, Authentic Leadership, Art of Hosting and Theory U, to mention the main structures and practices that support my life and work, all backed by the principle that we are all part of one big living system.
Here are a few findings about 3 important knowledge and modes of knowing offered to me along this path:
1 – A lot of our difficulties on integrating visible and invisible comes from our informative concepts of time and structure. Few explore the formative dimension of these concepts.
We inhabit structures and as elements (content) we are also structures( explore this assumption in this post); structures act like containers made of rules, properties and relationships. Structure influences behaviours , so if we wanna change results we should look at our structures that shape the behaviours producing non wished results. I get the sense most our collective effort is done trying to influence behaviours, which may have its worth, but its not suffice. Plus it can bring more damages since its kind of trying to heal through the symptom without knowing the real source of the disease. Having a fever only tells me my body is fighting something in some place. So both as individual and as a collective we should regularly explore our structures and its composition.
– Time is structure
Most people consider it as a resource to produce what we value. We become so obsessed towards that valuable goal and ignore that as everything in Life we have to balance polarities, so we should not use time only towards productive action. One prevailing idea is that “time is money”, but if we take time as structure we become more open to inquiry which other outcomes could be produced from the use of time. One important use is to update our “software” that runs our productive action. Time is also a structure for pause and reflection.
2 – It really helps a lot to take a systemic view of what surrounds.
This should go much more beyond theory and concepts. This should become an embodied practice, as it extends the perception of what is our mind (1). Phenomenology and embodied cognition practices help us to perceived, observe and make understanding our systems (2) – as we can sense the “set of interacting or interdependent components forming the integrated whole” (system definition) that surround us.
3 – We need to gain the courage to cope with our nature in the larger system that is Life, and learn to nurture it.
This require us to acknowledge and deal properly with these very important aspects:
– We influence and are influenced, constantly.
– Being human is carrying polarities, the strongest and the most vulnerable states live inside of us as one.
– We operate from models or representations of the larger system, and we suffer from cognitive bias ( read “58 Cognitive Biases That Screw Up Everything We Do”)
From my experience working with these 3 aspects is a crucial step to perceive our gaps in making sense of our reality. It sure helps me to create the necessary openness to build spaces and hold time to tap into these deeper levels of thought and knowledge, where invisible and visible are perceived as one. Only from this openness (authenticity) can we shift paradigms that hold us trapped in ways of operating that no longer serve us collectively.
“As the old saying goes, in the expert’s mind there are few possibilities, but for one with the beginner’s mind the world is wide open.” Garr Reynolds
If you had the chance to help foster more beginner’s mind would you do it? If so, you may find one solution path to support it through open dialogue and listening sessions.
(1) Extended Mind Thesis- https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/extended-mind; https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/feeling-extended
(2) Phenomenological Knowledge ( text, understanding and being) – http://www.phenomenologyonline.com/inquiry/epistemology-of-practice/)