Maturana - Epistomolgy LO12922

Mnr AM de Lange (
Tue, 18 Mar 1997 14:45:01 GMT+2

Rick Karash wrote in LO12909
Replying to John Fullerton in LO12908 --
> > How do we live and observe? Decent philosophical or scientific question, I
> > guess. To consider the question, one does not have to assume or accept
> > that there is no objective reality. To say that there is no objective
> > reality, is to make an apparently objective statement about what is real,
> > and that's not fair.
> This is a very subtle point... Is there a reality? Maturana says no.
> What's subtle is exactly what he means by this. The point is one that I
> have trouble with, and the people attending the seminar had trouble with
> it as well.
> I asked him about this at lunch. He said, "Whatever it might be, we can't
> talk about it." That is, I think, we cannot make statements about what it
> is like to observe reality.

Rick, it was good to read how you experienced Maturana. I have no doubts
Maturana is a creative thinker. By studying what each creative thinker has
to say, helps me to develop my own "lateral thinking" (to use the famous
term of Edward De Bono - another creative thinker.)

I believe that I am determined in being and becoming by my commutation
with reality. I will be completely surprised is it is any different with
somebody else.

What can I tell about my commutation with reality?

I was very fortunate to have discovered the seven essentialities of
creativity. I can use all of them to unfold my mechanical viewpoint on
reality. (It has a dual viewpoint which I think of as the dynamical
viewpoint). Each essentiality opens up a new viewing angle on reality.

Consider, for example, the essentiality wholeness or monadicity. I think
of reality as one (monad), i.e. reality is all inclusive so that nothing
is excluded. For example, each thought of mine is real, whether it be fact
or fiction, tacit or worded, valuable or trivial, good or bad, etc. I
cannot think of anything which is not real. I cannot commute mentally with
anything which is not real. Similarly, I cannot sense anything which is
not real. Even those things outside me with which my senses cannot commute
directly, but which commute through whatever chains finally with my
senses, are real.

I consider reality to be Creator and Creation. The most remarkable
property of (all) Creation is its creativity. This creativity mirrors the
Creator in Creation. The primordial, immanent cause of creativity is the
creation of entropy. Each amount of entropy which has been created, has
also to be manifested in all of creation so long as time goes by.

Just as compelling as the duality Creator and Creation, is the duality
creature and creator. I am a creature and a creator. The more I commute
with the Creator and Creation, the more I become a creator and thus
discover me as creature.

I live in a most exciting slice of time. In the former part of my
life I firmly believed that the greatest accomplishment by humans
is the invention of language. In that part of my life I was not
so careful of arrogance. Now, in the latter part of my life, I
firmly believe that the greatest accomplishment by humans is the
discovery of creativity, es[ecially that it is the most important
property of Creation. I can clearly see three steps in human
Step 1: creating tacitly,
Step 2: creating language (from about 4000BC up to now 2000AC),
Step 3: creating commutation Creation to discover the
"universe of languages".

What do I mean by the "universe of languages"? Well, through chemistry,
for example, we are discovering an extraordinary chemical language between
living organisms. Just think of hormones (language in an organism) or
pheromones (language betwwen organisms). Plants, once thought to be brain
dead, indeed communicate with each other: "A predator is eating me -
become bitter so that you do not also have to perish". Through physics,
for example, we are disovering an extraordinary bit language between
digital circuits. "My hand shake is like this - do you accept it?" And so
I can go on and on, including artists like musicians and painters. I am
quite sure that the basic grammer of this "universe of languages" is
nothing else but commutation.

What I have written above is crystal clear to me. But as Rick has noted
about Maturana, it will not be so crystal clear to anybody else. This
confusion or chaos of becoming is also part of reality, namely its
dynamics. It will become more and more and thus drive itself to a
bifurcation. For some the bifurcation will result in an emergence, but for
others it will become an immergence. Although immergences are part of
reality, they make me very sad when I think about humanity.

Maturana said, according to Rick, that whatever reality might be, we can't
talk about it. I fear that I already have said too much about it.

Best wishes
-- -

At de Lange
Gold Fields Computer Centre for Education
University of Pretoria
Pretoria, South Africa


"Mnr AM de Lange" <>

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