The Heart of the Matter LO20464

Artur F. Silva (
Sat, 23 Jan 1999 00:17:13 +0000

Replying to LO20424 ( was Our Founding Discipline)

I am proposing a new thread to try to relate comments made in different
threads (some of which are still ongoing). I will begin with At's reply to
a mail from Fred Nickols (I hope Fred will not mind to the fact that I
have used his words to name this thread; and I hope some of you will find
this interesting).

At 11:14 19-01-1999 +0200, At wrote:

>But I actually wanted to get to your second observation which concerns
>"the heart of the matter". You write that "If you can get to the heart of
>the matter, without being sidetracked by all the surrounding complexity,
>many problems can be resolved without the aid of a tool like system
>dynamics". It means that knowing the heart of the matter does not require
>system dynamics. In other words, system dynamics is incomplete with
>respect to problem solving. It is incomplete because specifically it does
>not explain "the heart of the matter". Furthermore, it does not explain
>why, when knowing "the heart of the matter", the solver will not be side
>tracked by all the surrounding complexity.

Reading this I made a quick connection(*) between this and:

(1) A mail from David Birren about the relations between the unconscious
and the conscious mind, namely about right brain, and left brain;

(2) the discussion about the "magic moment" in collective sports (like
basketball) that we have undertaken in "Sports analogies";

(3) the question of "Emotional Intelligence";

(4) the notion of "intuition" that is a recurrent subject;

(5) the revision of the "metanoia" concept, I have proposed some days ago;

(6) the dialogue on Tacit Knowledge, etc.

Do you also think there is a "pattern" underlying all these topics? If
you answer is yes, I will not need to go further - you understood already
the "heart of the matter" (as I see it...)

Would you agree that the "feelings" that one feels when he discovers that
he has arrived to the "heart of the matter" are similar to the ones that a
player feels when is team is playing in a "magic moment"?

Would you agree that this is similar to the feelings a manager, or a
consultant, has when the organisation is beginning the "metanoia" process
that will conduct to a radical change, the emergence of something new?

Would you agree that to feel this type of moment one makes use mainly of
the right brain, of an intuition process?

If this is the case, what is the role of "Systems Thinking" ( or Systems
Dynamics)? It is a very relevant role, I think: as we don't know exactly
how our intuition work, how to communicate with our right brain, Systems
Thinking is a powerful tool that one can use to "process" the information
logically, and allow for the (individual and/or collective) right brain
to make the rest. It is also a powerful tool to "explain" afterwards what
comes out from the right brain. But is not of much help in the

Does this make any sense to some of you?



(*) a "right brain" connection, of course...


"Artur F. Silva" <>

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