Re: MD Undeniable Facts

From: Elizaphanian (
Date: Thu Apr 24 2003 - 15:30:51 BST

  • Next message: Wim Nusselder: "Re: MD What is a living being?"

    Hi Platt,

    > Not sure what you're driving at, but if you mean the levels are relative
    > one another, yes, I agree.

    That's not quite what I meant. I mean that any given SQ structure can be
    seen as organised around certain absolutes, or fundamental givens, which
    operate for as long as that structure continues. A DQ innovation can improve
    that structure in such a way that what had previously been seen as absolute
    is now seen as 'absolute until then'. An example follows

    > But the static patterns at the inorganic and
    > biological levels are absolute in that they no longer can be affected by
    > DQ. Pirsig makes the point that now only living beings (referring to
    > humans) can respond to DQ. Cockroaches have reached the end of
    > their evolutionary chain.

    I don't agree with this. It rules out (for example) some future catastrophe
    which will open up new possibilities of cockroach evolution. What Pirsig
    says is true for as long as our present system obtains - ie, as long as the
    present system is taken as the absolute boundary. If that is changed, then
    the situation changes, and the evolutionary potential changes. How do you
    understand genetic enhancement? Is that not a DQ innovation in the
    biological realm, albeit one driven by level 3 and 4 motivations?

    >With humans in "control" of the social and
    > intellectual patterns, those patterns are more subject to change as a
    > result of the influence of human responses to DQ, although the social is
    > very hardened compared to intellect. Since the intellectual patten is
    > most open to DQ and even seeks it out (if you're pursuing beauty in
    > whatever you do), that level is, as you say, "to be preferred."

    Fine with that.

    > I'd rather fetishise DQ than SQ. But there's always the danger in doing
    > so to forget our dependence on SQ, like the Hippies in the 60's did.
    > Push the envelope towards greater harmony and beauty, but never
    > destroy the envelope in the effort. How does that strike you as a general
    > principle?

    That strikes a good note. Anything which emphasises the interdependence of
    SQ and DQ I would be happy with (ie which makes Quality more important than
    the subsequent division into Static and Dynamic). There was a Wilber quote
    (something about greatest depth and greatest span) which said something
    similar, wasn't there? (Although I prefer your envelope language. I speak
    only from the second hand knowledge gleaned from this list, but Wilber
    strikes me as something of a windbag....)


    "Even to have expressed a false thought boldly and clearly is already to
    have gained a great deal." Wittgenstein, 1948

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