Learning Philosophy LO14807

Mnr AM de Lange (AMDELANGE@gold.up.ac.za)
Mon, 1 Sep 1997 12:32:22 GMT+2

Replying to LO14785 --

Dear organlearners,

James Carrington wrote:

> It is with this thought that I will dive headlong into At de Langes'
> question in LO14764 "on what is all chaos a development of?"
> Chaos is the perception of an unknown process. It is my
> feeling (faith) that there is in fact no such thing as
> chaos. The more we look at things that we do not
> understand, the more that we realize everything behaves
> predictably based on input from external forces. We look
> at what we originally thought of as chaos, then,
> understanding the process, define its structure-process
> or being-becoming.

James, the above paragraph is so rich that we can spend a month on
disussing it. Thank you very much for your contribution.

One of the things which you do, is to contrast "chaos" with
"unerstanding". I also do it, but I wonder if we do it in the same manner?
Let me explain how I do it. Thus I will either articulate your tacit
knowledge, or you understand it differently and will thus be able to tell
me something new which I have to take into consideration.

We understand by relating our concepts to each other. I do not believe in
importing concepts. Memorising concepts is very different to understanding
concepts. Concepts have to emerge within us by employing previously
emerged concepts. It happnes through a process which I call emergent
learning. The emeregence of a concept requires chaos among some the
already existing concepts within us. This chaos has also been called
brainstorming. The newly emerged concept establishes an ordered structure
among the constituent concepts with the disorganised relations between
them. It is in this sense which I contrast chaos to understanding.

You write that you do feel (believe) that there is such a thing as chaos.
You remind me very much of my own thoughts during the early eighties. I
have disovered in two separate ways how important being-becoming was to
emergences. And I tried to make sense out of chaos and order. My brain-
storming reaching breakpoint. Then "it" emerged. Chaos and order are not
logical individual which thus could be predicated. In fact, they are
predicates of logical individuals. I readily realised that order is a
predicate of being (structure). My whole academical heritage sustained it.
But I realised with a great shock that chaos is a predicate of becoming
(process, function). I suddenly realised that I never really consider
becoming fully complementary to being - and that my whole academical
heritage did not help me at all to do so.

Then came the slow and painful process of rethinking every concept in
terms of the concepts "chaos of becoming" and "order of being". It
clarified many of my concepts, but it also showed me many gaps in my
existing knowledge. One such a gap was the logic of imperatives
(commands). Few of you will realsie it, but when we speak of rational or
logical, we actually imply the logic of declaratives (statements). 99.99%
of all advancements in logic are in declarative logic. It is the logic
which mathematicians and scientists are so fond of using. It is the logic
which has been modelled (machined) into the modern computer. Whereas
declarative logic concerns statements about the present and past,
imperative logic concerns the future and we will create it. It is the kind
of logic which teachers and managers need.

I succeeded in inventing an imperative logic. (It will be reported in
chapter 8 of my book.) However, with this invention, a deeper meaning of
chaos and order emerged within me. I will try to formulate it as follows:
chaos = pattern in the variety of becomings. order = pattern in the
variety of beings. In other words, I am again able to think of chaos and
order as logical entities. Both are predicated by variety. The one differs
form the other in that the variety itself is related to either being or
becoming as two complemented logical individuals.

To illustrate it graphically:
               pattern of variety
                      /  \
   chaos <---------- /    \ ----------> order
                    /      \
                   /        \
                  /          \
              becoming     being

This means that emergences/immergences, i.e. bifurcations are the
remarkable transition from a varietypattern of variety becoming to a
varietypattern of being. When these beings become mature, they cause a
reverse transition, namely varietypattern of being into a varietypattern
of becoming. Thus we get this pendulum swing which Winfired has written

James, is this lattre formulation of chaos not probably what you tacitly
have had in mind?

Here is a sentence very wierd in its meaning: We must be very definite not
to confuse "chaos" with "uncertainty".

The transition form chaos to order is extermely contingent. If we are
ignorant to one or more of the contingencies, then the emergence will
certainly become an uncertain business.

> It is in this thread, human perception, that I would like
> to comment on the following statement from At:
> > To explain an origin, we need a vortex of connected
> > structure-process events which we can trace backwards
> > until we reach the origin. I am not so sure that I can
> > go backwards to the origin of this Creation, but I am
> > definitely sure that I cannot go beyond that origin to
> > the origin of its Creator. The simple reason is that
> > time is part of Creation. As soon as I try to go beyond
> > the origin of this creation, time does not exist any
> > more.
> Time *as we perceive it* may not exist, but still exist
> none the less. However, if what I am saying has any
> validity whatsoever, then there may not _be_ any specific
> origin to your vortex (ala Hofstadters' Little Harmonic
> Labyrinth), therefore, no discontinuation of time, be it
> as we perceive it now or otherwise.
> wow, no origin, no chaos, what's next?

James, if we assume that exists independeant of the rest of the Creator's
Creation, then it is obvious that we will infer that there is no
discontinuity in time. We will even infer that the godhead must be time. I
will not like this because I have obsreved how time has become the fearful
master of many.

No, I am definitely sure that there is an origin. What I meant by the
"origin of structure- process", is how did these two concepts emerged
within us? Were their emergences a pure thing of the abstract, or were
there emergences also related to something we sense outside us? Were their
origin in the Big Bang which is so often mentioned nowadays, or can we
observe this origin even today? Is it possible to admit this "origin"
without the creativity of humankind coming into the picture? Is it
necessary to know how the concepts structure (being) and process
(becoming) have emerged within us, or can we simply go on and use them as
we do with many of our tools? What if "becoming-being" is one of the
contingencies which have to be taken into account for emergences. What if
becoming-being is essential to emergent learning? Will we not remain
ignorant to emergent learning if we remain ignorant to becoming-being?

Best wishes


At de Lange Gold Fields Computer Centre for Education University of Pretoria Pretoria, South Africa email: amdelange@gold.up.ac.za

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