Seeking Tolerance Resources LO27303

From: AM de Lange (
Date: 09/27/01

Replying to LO27298 --

Dear Organlearners,

Richard Karash <> writes

>A friend asks:
>>I have been asked by more than one person if I
>>have resources to help with issues of Tolerance.
>>It goes beyond the traditional diversity discussion
>>and is focused on religious tolerance.

Greetings dear Rick,

I do not want to give your friend resources. I rather want to to give him
something to contemplate with "enquiring thoughts". His phrase "It goes
beyond the traditional diversity discussion ..." compels me to follow this

Let us assume that the 7Es (seven essentialities of creativity) are unknown
to your friend. Let us then introduced them to your friend by their nominal
. liveness, sureness, wholeness, fruifulness, spareness,
. otherness and openness.
Let us ask her/him to associate "diversity" with anyone of these seven
I would be surprised if she/he does not select "otherness".

So, if wants she/he wants to go beyond diversity, should she/he not
consider finding out what the other six names mean? Furthermore, should
she/he not question why these seven names are associated with creativity?
And why are they called "essentialities" and not merely essences?

I suspect that your friend is not a blind person living in the land of the
blind. Thus I think it is reasonable to assume that she/he has already
thought about wholeness. I wonder whether she/he have ever sought for
patterns with which wholeness can be characterised? I suspect that she/he
already knows tacitly one such pattern which can be articulated by words
like "unity" and "together".

I have found that most people who are conscious to wholeness respond to it
in a simplistic manner. Surprisingly few people are conscious of the
complexity of wholeness, or the complexity of diversity (otherness) or the
complexity of each of the other five 7Es. Thus I suspect that your friend
has not searched diligently for other patterns besides the "unity" pattern
in wholeness.

Let me introduce to your friend another pattern which I have found in
wholeness. It is the pattern "associativity" which can be symbolised by
. X * Y * Z
It has two ends X and Z linked by a the "mouthpiece" Y. These X and Z
"commute" with each other through the "mouthpiece" Y.

For example, consider that I am X and that your friend is Z so that the
"moutpiece" Y involves at least two things -- internet (hardware and
software) and language (English). Internet is complex as many a fellow
learner discover from time to time. And English? English is not my mother
tongue so that I have to struggle daily with the complexity of English.
Hence I think your friend will appreciate just how complex Y is.

What about the complexity of X (me) and Z (your friend)? Should we expect
two simple X and Z entities connected by a complex entity Y (internet and
language)? Is it not perhaps the other way around, namely that X and Z are
far more complex than Y? How did Internet and English emerged? They were
created by humans like X and Z.

I do hope your friend already had some thoughts on paradigms and
the shift from one to another. The paradigm of simplicity has an
immense influence on how people think about creativity. For example,
they will think that whatever humans created together, is more complex
than any of the humans self who created it. Consequently they perceive
the associativity pattern:
. humanX * Internet&English * humanZ
as two simple ends joined by a complex "mouthpiece".

However, should they explore carefully this associativity pattern from
the paradigm of complexity, would they not discover two very complex
ends humanX and humanZ joined by a less complex "mouthpiece"? I
did it and the conviction grew in me that it is indeed a pattern with nature
. more-complex * less-complex * more-complex
rather with nature
. simple * complex * simple
as perceived from the paradigm of simplicity.

I think that the perception or even mental model of an association
. simple * complex * simple
rather than a well formed awareness of the associativity pattern
. more-complex * less-complex * more-complex
is responsible for much of the intolerance between people whenever the
"mouthpiece" involves a diverse entity of whole societies like religion,
economics, politics, ethics or art.

The big question now is "How do we become conscious of the complexity
within any human?". I think we each have to begin with ourselves and ask
what, for example, wholeness would mean to each of us. For example,
using the associativity pattern, I would suggest to your friend to fill in
the centre "mouthpiece" in the pattern
. your-friend * ....... * resources.
Think of all the possibilities and then weed them out one by one until you
have honed in on the one fitting the best.

Why do your friend want these resources? Is there not perhaps a missing
link (the "mouthpiece") between your friend as he/she is now and these
resources? Should your friend not increase in wholeness by searching for
this "mouthpiece". Assume it is the case and your friend has found the
missing link "......". What will you friend then be, the same friend with
"..... "
as an extra or a complexer friend with "......" as an integral part of
or your-friend&"......"-complexer

I have written on a lot of "trees", so much so that your friend might not
see the "forest" among them. But I had to paint so many trees otherwise a
forest cannot be seen. The forest of this reply to her/him is that the
more complex the "creative spirituality" of a person becomes, the more
that person is tolerant to other humans despite their impairment in the
7Es or the ways in which they employ them.

Just yesterday afternoon I studied the lives and works of two persons of
some centuries ago -- the great jurist Hugo Grotius and the great
translator Desire Erasmus of classical works. Their tolerance for other
people with different world conceptions was most extraodinary for their
times. Even more astounding is how they wanted to act as mediators
("mouthpieces") between these people so as to promote tolerance between
them. (In those days it was intolerances between Catholics and

But sadly, both suffered immensely as a result of this mediation. The other
people were not aware to the most complex personalities of these two
persons. In other words, they suffered because of the perception
. simple* complex * simple
of the other people where the ends have to be simple humans while the
"mouthpiece" cannot ever be a complex human.

As I prepared for a meeting at church I wondered when these thoughts would
be needed again. This morning when I read your friends request and her/him
writing "OD professionals and managers are directly faced with this NOW" I
realised just how soon. Unfortunately, I have to warn your friend that a
complex creative spirituality does not come quickly by absorbing what
appropiate resources might tell. Rote learning may produce fast results,
but it cannot produce complex results like authentic learning.

With care and best wishes


At de Lange <> Snailmail: A M de Lange Gold Fields Computer Centre Faculty of Science - University of Pretoria Pretoria 0001 - Rep of South Africa

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