Replying to LO28815 --
John Dicus <email@example.com> writes:
>I want to say something about independence/freedom
>and also something about interdependence.
>The difficulty with this kind of dialogue is that it's difficult
>to know what someone truly means by what they write.
>So I preface my remarks by saying that this posting has
>been catalyzed by what I perceived in your email.
>Everything I say is meant kindly and respectfully.
Greetings dear John,
Your magnificent sentence "Everything I say is meant kindly and
respectfully" is the ROL (Rule Of Law) of all dialogues. Without this ROL
we can forget to learn from any conversation.
You mention a difficulty. I think there are several. One of them is that
the dialogue is considered to be a series of snapshots where each snapshot
has to provide for perfect understanding. I want to suggest that we ought
to think of the dialogue as a movie. If one person do not understand what
another person said, then it is part of the movie to ask that person to
clarify what he/she meant, or to indicate to that person what meaning it
>For sure we need less alienating and less destructive
>governments, societies, and companies. To that end
>interdependence, servant-leadership, and stewardship
>are pathways to more benevolent, nurturing, and
>Yet I do not see these ideals to be in conflict with freedom
>and independence. Nor do I see freedom and independence
>to be alienating and destructive.
When i was still a young man, I was all for freedom and independance,
especially for my own people the Afrikaners. That is why i felt like
having been in the 7th heaven after having read the US Declaration for the
first time. Based on what past leaders told, i thought that freedom and
independance were prerequisite to the advancement of societies, nations
and civilisations. I began collecting constitutions like that of the USA
and the DBR and studying them. And i was amazed that the UK had no
constitution -- only tradition.
Meanwhile i also began to study creativity because i had the gut feeling
that creativity and learning depend deeply on each other. But i never even
gave it a thought that creativity and politics are also closely related.
How wrong i was.
John, you mention above "less alienating and less destructive". For a long
time during my studies of creativity i had the idyllic notion that
creativity had always to do with constructive actions and never with
destructive actions. Today i know why. All the literature which i studied
had that same idyllic notion. But gradually it began to dawn upon me that
creativity had a Janus face, for better or for worse. I began to wonder
what in creativity could be tuned to make it more constructive and thus
also less constructive. But i had no cooking clue what it would be and
nothing in literature gave me even the slightest hint.
Meanwhile i stopped my constitutional studies. The reason was that a
consitution is one thing, but that most politicians are another species.
They will talk "freedom and independance for the nation" to hoard in
supporters, but they will take away most of the "freedom and independance"
of their party members to stay in power. The flag of their ship is always
something constructive, but on board they act destructively. Furthermore,
the constitution is for them a worthless piece of writing since they do
not have the ROL in their hearts to make it a most valuable document.
Then in the middle eighties i discovered the 7Es (seven essentialities of
creativity). I did it by seeking patterns of correspondence between a
material creative system and an abstract creative system. I selected the
chemical system and the mathematicsl system. Finally i ended up with seven
patterns which i had to give names, individually and collectively. That
was quite a task. But as i was doing it, excitement began to grow in me.
Here were the very patterns which enable me to distinguish between
constructive and destructive creativity.
It began to dawn on me that just like a constitution, tradition or
monarchy without the ROL are worthless, "freedom and independance" without
the 7Es are also worthless. Consider, for example, sureness
("identity-context"). The political party winning the election gives
"identity" to the government. But when it takes all the other political
parties little into consideration, claiming for itself independence, it
governs without "context" and thus with little sureness.
Let us think of wholeness ("unity-associativity"). A nation does not
consist of only voters. There are adults who are mentally incapable
of voting. There are also a vast number of children and teenagers
who are too young to vote. How many politicians are you fellow
learners aware of who clearly take these non-voters into account?
In fact, I see the members elected to parliament or congress as the
very "unlomo" (mouth piece) or commuter in the associative pattern
. voters * electorate * non-voters
But since most of these "electorate" trample on the future "freedom
and independance" of those who still have to grow up, the "unity" of
the nation and thus its wholeness get destroyed.
>Independence as a pathway designed to exclude
>interdependence is not the same thing as independence
>as a pathway designed to escape destructive subjugation.
What a sentence! (And i mean it kindly and respectfully ;-) What is this
"independence as a pathway designed to escape destructive subjugation"?
Let me try to say what it means to me. It is for me to have the
never-ending opportunity (right?) to create constructively. Any person
puts me in the jail of "destructive subjugation" when preventing the
growing of any of the 7Es within me.( The 7Es are liveness, sureness,
wholeness, fruitfulness, spareness, otherness and openness.) It is even
worse when that person impairs deliberately any of the 7Es within me
because it is like throwing the keys of the jail away. In other words,
independence for me is to say that I am depending on the 7Es for my well
What is the "Independence as a pathway designed to exclude
interdependence"? For me it not to become subjected to other persons who
believe it is their God given right to decide for me, without even knowing
me, what is good for me. I do not depend on such persons. But i depend
heavily on persons who know how to care for the well becoming of all
people. It is like "interdependence as a pathway designed to exclude
So, what I think your complex sentence says is that the path of
constructive creativity involves more than humans prescribing what it must
>Being fully free and fully equal -- both at once
>-- is the challenge.
Dear John, i do not want to tear your sentence apart. I already teared
your sentence from its context which helps me to understand its meaning.
But the word "equal" in it hinders me much. So i took a stroll through our
campus to see how i will say it to you. The students, the birds and the
trees are different and yet they are united. I do not see any equality
operating, but i see immense similarities (correspondences). When i looked
at the cars and buildings, it was different. Bricks look the same. Windows
look the same. I even saw two cars, same color, same model, only the tyres
and registration plates differing. The students, the trees and the birds
are all living. But the buildings and cars just exist. There may be
equality in existence, but there is no equality in living.
So the challenge is for me something different -- advancing both "living
fully self" and "fully living of all life forms". When i change your
sentence into "Being fully free and fully similar -- both at once -- is
the challenge", it gives a closer rendering of my own thinking. Yet i have
now become deeply under the impression that langauge which suited us so
well in the past cannot tell what I know presently. I wonder whether it is
the same with you.
I love your following description
>When I first traveled to the UK about 15 years ago,
>it was the strangest feeling. The only way I can
>describe it is that I felt like I had just come home.
>The last thing I would want is to be totally independent
>from a place that feels like home.
I felt the same when i traveled the Overijsel region (eastern part of the
I know that i will feel the same when exploring a desert which i have
never explored before. Don Dwiggens with his kindness subscribed me to the
Arizona Highway. Each month i explore its pages eagerly because although
having never been there before, it feels like home for me. What astounds
me often are the many streams in such an arid country. It is so unlike the
deserts of Southern Africa.
For example, i will take you along five hundred kilometers through the
Kalahari with not a drop of water to be seen. Yet in one of the most arid
places, Namgorab (south-western Namibia), i have stumbled by accident in
the Gorab mountains on a tiny permanent stream hidden in a cliff,
trickling perhaps as much as a liter of water per minute. It disappears
again before it even reaches the foot slopes of the mountain. What i saw
there and what i never saw elsewhere, is strikingly similar (but
absolutely unequal ;-) to the pictures unfolding each month in the Arizona
Highways. Thank you Dwig! I can easily make Arizona my home.
With care and best wishes
At de Lange <firstname.lastname@example.org> 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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