Re: Individuals & Systems Thinking LO1272
Wed, 17 May 1995 14:13:41 -0400

Once the individual understands the system (s)he can make an intervention
to jog it onto a more constructive path or vice versa. Of course that
understanding is not absolutely necessary either because the individual
can change the system inadvertently.

Does the husband drink because the wife nags, or does the wife nag because
the husband drinks? And where as the therapist do you change this system?
Is this a moral and ethical issue or is this a mechanical and systemic

Just when I decide what to do, I find out that the wife's mother also is a
shrew married to her alcoholic father and then to what extent is the wife
mirroring her family of origin? I decide that this in some ways is a
transgenerational phenomenon.

Do individuals have choices and responsibilities or are they the victims
of the systems in which they find themselves?

In the sixties we used to say, "If you are not part of the solution, you
are part of the problem." This was said in response to people bitching
about "the system". Socrates also said that an unexamined life is not
worth living and how many people live examined lives?

I think Senge covered this in this model in The Fifth Discipline as
Personal Mastery.

Best wishes,

David Markham