Mental Models and Change LO29602

From: Heidi and Dan Chay (
Date: 11/28/02

Replying to Mental Models and Change LO29597

At wrote:


I agree with you that many sectors of humankind have overdone the
accelerating phase of "entropy production" by far, especially the past
fifty years. Any further overdoing it will have catastrophic consequences
- -- in the physical dimension like poverty, famine and incurable diseases
while in the spiritual dimension like illiteracy, crime and complacency.
Few people may understand anything at all of the "accelerating phase of
entropy production". But many people are well aware of "increasing the
change" like "higher productivity", "higher living standard" and
"increased national growth". This Mental Model of "increasing the change"
is ridiculous in the light of the future catastrophes it will cause. It is
tragic in the light of the already splitting of the world in the few
"haves" and the many "have nots".

Other Mental Models may inhibit change, but this Mental Model of change
itself is already doing humankind as well as the ecology of our planet
unprecedented harm. Who will put a stop to it?


I suppose if we aren't able to come together toward mutual deceleration
sufficiently quickly "we" will "put a stop to it" systemically and
indirectly via "limits to growth" and "tragedy of the commons" in a
pattern of three primary variables: increasing scarcity of high quality
material resource primary inputs like clean fresh water, fertile soils,
oil, and natural gas; direct and indirect impacts from entropic outputs
including various forms of pollution, dispersion of toxic chemicals,
destruction of ecosystems, greenhouse gasses, intensification of the
hydrologic cycle, etc.; and war -- all of which combine in destructive
amplifying loop patterns.

At this point, as far as I can see, for any number of reasons the topic
remains largely unspeakable (including with small circles), which I see as
a curious challenge. I have found that there is a pattern that happens
very quickly in our culture if a person introduces a picture of such a
dismal scenario, even if merely for dialogue purposes: multiple defensive
routines of labeling, stereotyping, politicizing, minimization, denial,
defeatism, and non-participation emerge to reject the thread.

By the way, At, I enjoyed "The Great Story" at , and after modifying the timeline here in
there with our own colored beads (as people are invited to do), we'll
begin using it as a stimulus for dialogue during some family dinners. I
also think I'll share it with my nieces and nephews as a holiday gift.


Dan Chay


"Heidi and Dan Chay" <>

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