Dealing with Complexity LO6442

Dr Ilfryn Price (
Fri, 5 Apr 1996 10:46:16 -0500

Replying to LO6398 --


I have followed with interest the dialog between yourself and Manuel Manga
concerning the distinction "natural world" and "human world" [and also
acknowledge Steve Caban L05890].

The distinction is *so obvious* to my own set of biases that it was not
untill I saw you posing the question that I appreciated how others might
see something different. I now see that the distinction may be a
fundamental one to explore on this list. As you put it

>When I say "world" I am talking about about the world in which we live,
>and also the peculiarities of human perception and how we think.

For me [with the gestalt of a geologist if there is such a thing] there is
a natural world that has been doing its thing for 4.5 billion years and
would go on doing it regardless of whether we [the species] were there to
see it or not [which does not mean that what the natural world does in the
future is independent of our arrival]. What and how we perceive this world
as is a matter of our human world and all the stuff of language,
perception and other things we converse about on these lists but we
exagerate our own importance in the scheme of things if we let ourselves
ignore the reality of a world out there in which we just are for the

We have been doing that too long by hundreds, if not thousands, of years
which is one of the reasons why we risk throwing the natural world of
balance. Even there we are not unique. Bacteria did it first 2 billion
years back when they poisoned the atmosphere with oxygen and various other
species have pulled of a similar trick since. We are just about to do it

My plea to, and hope from, the LO movement is that by getting a handle on
the interaction of the evolution of organisations, technologies, belief
systems etc [i.e. Learning] we may avert some of the unintended
consequences. I do see a recognition of the distinction as an important
part of that process and thank you and Manuel again for helping me see
that others may not see the same distinction.

If Price
The Harrow Partnership
Pewley Fort Guildford UK


Dr Ilfryn Price <>

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