Learning and Partisanship LO22470

J.C. Lelie (janlelie@wxs.nl)
Sat, 21 Aug 1999 22:11:33 +0200

Replying to LO22464 --

Hello At and Aleksander,

At, you answered to Aleksandar Raich stirring posts with, amongst others:

> The most I cannot offer, is:
> Let us have a dialogue on how much we can each
> change ourselves.

I agree, and would like to add:

"Dialogue is not merely a set of techniques for improving organizations,
enhancing communications, building consensus, or solving problems. It is
based on the principle that conception and implementation (of change? -
JCL) are intimately linked, with a core of common meaning." - snipped from
the LO-fieldbook.

Over the years, i've learned that the search for this "core of common
meaning" (tricky word, common, it means the things we share, we have "in
common" and also means simple, the common (wo)man, the common truth - ha!)
is something we all share. Constant graving for the meaning of (our) live.

I think that we've learned a set of strategies to reach this holy grale,
this sacred body of knowledge, this enlightment. I personally think that
life intended itself as reproduction of the best adapted mutation, no
questions asked, no meaning sought. But some wonderful coincedences
triggered a "new way of life", a funny thing happened when this ape
started to look up ... then the bifurcations hit the fan!

1. One of the simplest, one of the easiest and the first strategies we
learn, is forcing people to believe, accept or acknowledge a common
meaning. "Daddy knows best", i tell my children. To which they nowadays
answer: "no way go-se". But, it worked for some time and, i want to
stress, works for finding the common "what-meanings", the simple survival
strategies. And also many, many people seem to be satisfied or have no
other option than these common meanings.

2. Then comes a number of "expert actions": scientifically showing what
the meaning of life is, thinking for yourself, culminating in the
evolution theory, quantum chromodynamics, general cosmology and for
instance the theories on the working of the human mind, currently
emerging. These strategies have been very succesful, look around and see
the common meaning in the form of cars, television, computers, running
water and rockets.

Some of these truths are in conflict with (accidentally wrong, no harm
intended) meanings from the earlier strategies - where not told by Big
Daddy - to which these earlier strategists respond in the only way they
have learned: use of power. So the sun kept revolving around the earth,

Science can and does supply many answers, some truths, noteably the
"how"-meaning, but runs into problems regarding "why"-questions. Some
think that this is reason enough to return to the previous strategies:
tell! Some have come up with new strategies.

3. So a third set of strategies has been developed, invented, found,
reached, strategies that explore the development of common meaning by
sharing problems, experiences, searching for the right questions. It is
this set of strategies that the LO-network uses, sharing experience,
learning from each other, combining mental models, team learning with
system archetypes. It supports the finding of the "why"-meanings, the
questions. These strategies have been build on the foundations laid by the
first two and have to use these for implementing new meanings. So again,
when conflict arises, the two earlier strategies try to take over: selling
and telling.

4. I expect that a next set of strategies has to do with what you call
changing yourself: somehow, somewhere in our queste, when we're lucky,
when we have the opportunity - we're not starved to death, not shot to
death, not crashed in a car accident or nuclear disaster- we have to
search for the processes to find a common meaning within ourself, we
return to the question: who am I?. We start to relate change and growing
with ourselves. I think of this as discovering one's own spirituality and
by doing that, giving meaning to others. Altough there will be no meaning
other than the meaning that already is, we have to discover it. It is
like discovering America - it already is and it is already discovered, and
yet: of we go!

Unfortunately, we live in interesting times: the strategy of using power
to convince people of a common meaning, uses the findings of the newer
strategies, which i think is unfair. New technologies are being used to
force people to accept old ideas and new technologies have given rise to
environmental problems. Elements of the LO-frame work are being used to
stifle learning, control people, get faster, better results. Old habits
are hard te break, old habits have proven their worth and will stay with
us. So, just as wee incorporate them.

The only thing i have to offer is: "do not take it personally, or, to put
it differently: the only choice you have is to choose who you are".


Jan Lelie


Drs J.C. Lelie CPIM (Jan) LOGISENS - Sparring Partner in Logistical Development Mind@Work - est. 1998 - Group Decision Process Support Tel.: (+ 31) (0)70 3243475 or car: (+ 31)(0)65 4685114 http://www.mindatwork.nl and/or taoSystems: + 31 (0)30 6377973 - Mindatwork@taoNet.nl

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