My mind tends to look for systems in the workings of the world. Over the years, the work of many individuals have caught my attention.

Buckminster Fuller explored the geometry of structure and found ways to apply his discoveries productively.

Stafford Beer explored a layered model of viable systems. A viable system in his model had five layers, the lowest of which was a population of component viable systems organized together by the current system. His layers attenuate information. A higher-level system would only get pinged by lower-level systems when things weren’t working “as usual.” He worked closely with Salvador Allende to use this model to connect efforts across Chile. However, Allende was brutally overthrown by US-backed Pinochet before the model could be tested.

Stafford Beer now does work using Buckminster Fuller-inspired structures in organizing gatherings in which dozens of individuals hold sequential conversations to intermix their ideas.

John Godolphin (J. G.) Bennett was an explorer. He served in some British foreign service capacity in Turkey¬† (if I recall correctly). He was one of few who learned the local languages and interacted with the local cultures. He met Gurdjieff, who became a strong influence in Bennett’s life. Bennett had other influences later in his life including Subud and Sivapuri Baba. Bennett developed Systematics, a study of systems. He posited that each level of complexity (monads – systems with but one component, dyads, triads, etc.) had intrinsic characteristics, which he attempted to describe.

His ideas have been productively applied in some corners of the corporate world that encourage long-range thinking informing the activities of a corporate entity. One vein was work done by Charles Krone through Krone Associates, which had many corporate clients, including DuPont, my father’s long-time employer. My father was in the part of the organization charged with to implanting Systematics into the DuPont organization.

Richard Knowles (once manager for a DuPont Plant in Appalachia) has found that his “Process Enneagram” can be a powerful and useful tool, when applied with ongoing focus, toward keeping an organization on track across a wide range of considerations. In this way an organization can be more nimble in that it is open to a greater variety of ways of taking on what comes its way.

Shyam Bhatnagar and Harish Johari.¬† Summarizing part of blog posting : In “Chakra Psychology”, each 6 or 7 years of our life serves as ground for one of our chakras to be in the forefront of our development. Tantra, Ayurveda and other traditions offer many valuable tools to conscious development.

Kabir & Camille Helminski are Mevlevi Sufis. They organized summertime retreats primarily for a community that had a base in SE Vermont at the time. The retreats were held at Burke Academy, when its skiing school was inactive. I met a community working together in spirit. My wife tells me I came back from time with the Sufis open to her in ways she valued.

Others – to be continued …

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