if you like this article, you might very well also like some other web-long-standing pages like about: FOUCAULT, JONAS, JUNGK, (in GERMAN) and KNOWMAP`s "Spacial" or Show vs. Schau (in ENGLISH) ...and how we can try to avoid "flat" postmodern nihilism by geting deep and concrete. Pls visit: ENCYCLOPEDIA stuctures to navigate the "deep" or go directly to "deep- & flat-worlds". Are about this article on Gebser as "longsellers", being in the TOP 10 for the last couple of years at http://benking.de


New – updated version for the JEAN GEBSER SOCIETY JOURNAL – version
(rev. May 2002 for the Journal of the Jean Gebser Society)
XXVII Annual Jean Gebser Conference
Worldly Expressions of the Integral

October 18-20, 2001 
Ohio University, Athens, OH


Concreteness in Integral Worlds

Heiner Benking and Sherryl Stalinski


The paper reviews representations and signs that might help us to come to common and shared realization in an integral age. It explores how we can use models and schemas in order to share "common frames of reference." The authors explore possible ways of embodying and linking worlds or realities. These include the construction of a-perspective or extra realities that can help us to jointly create meaning and understanding beyond our directly observable meso-scale and ego-centric "environment/vicinity." We explore ways to merge and morph - know, connect, translate and transform schemas - and overcome the dualisms or schisms in our conceptions and mental models, as this is understood as one criteria in Gebser’s structure of moving from the Rational to the Integral. One step is seen to include and move beyond the physical and visual (perspective) space to shared and combined (merged and morphed spaces), spaces were we can jointly create and move boundaries in our perceived and created worlds using processes of dialogue. The authors suggest this fundamental step in coming to the concretion of shared dimensions in order to avoid the dangers of post-modern vagueness and Beliebigkeit, or the creations of new myths and belief systems, as they would lead us back into former forms of human development. Instead, we strive for a broader basis for imparting and dialogue - which is part the motto of the INTEGRAL STRUCTURE - coming to a broader and shared collective understanding.The authors believe that Gebser shows us a way out of dualistic, anthropocentric thinking that leaves us enslaved by physical space concepts and "boxed" thinking, and provides ways towards sharing not only physical but also mental manifestations and imaginations. Gebser seems to be urging us to look into the inclusion of all layers or structures and not ending only in meditative state, but standing on the ground, surveying the world with our eyes and sharing or imparting concepts of a bigger and shared picture in order to expand our realms of being. 

"The concretion of time

is one of the preconditions
for the integral structure;
only the concrete can be integrated,
never the merely abstract."
--Jean Gebser, The Ever-present Origin, p.99
(emphasis of"one" added by the authors)
words - yes words.
Make them solid
So you can pick them up
and throw them.
That is the problem.
How to make the intangible real, lifelike....
--J. R. Lloyd

The authors endeavor in this effort to rephrase questions such as: Which frames of reference? My frame or world of references - your frame or world? Instead, we ask how to bridge and come to shared meaning and action beyond the island or isolation tendencies in an often overwhelming, antagonizing and confusing world. We ask, how can we perceive multiple frames of reference simultaneously-or more aptly, integrally.We want to show here how to reflect "common frames of references" on a broader basis (Brown 1994) (Benking/Brown 1994), and how to build shared models to better exchange and share ... come to more solid terms for abstract situations beyond our direct access, feel and touch in proportion and consequences beyond just our life (our anthropocentric view). It is an effort that seeks a broader picture for the Planet and aspirations and values as stakeholders for all humanity. It is an effort that seeks to develop further dialogue and co-creation by presenting work done in various fields; jointly transforming and "jumping" between models in order to develop dialogue between the "incompatible," where we need to rely on openness, tolerance and curiosity. 

Awareness and Consciousness 

Astronauts have often spoken about "instant consciousness," something impressing and lasting they experienced the moment they saw the earth as a whole and themselves apart from it. They report that this changed their attitudes and awareness, they "suddenly" became aware about other positions; appreciating the value, fragility and beauty of the planet and their place and duty for safeguarding beyond a personal "vicinity." 

Becoming conscious about an external object, state or fact is in part a process of widening one’s horizons and perspectives and ultimately the sphere of responsibility. When we consult the dictionary we find that "consciousness is the quality or state of being aware especially of something within oneself." But, as we have seen above, we experience and widen our awareness, taking into consideration and experience something from "outside" which we feel has some relevance, proportion and consequence connected to our survival. As awareness widens, (external and internal) consciousness heightens (the integration of internal/external). Survival of a greater whole along and across scales and cultures and times transcends the focus on personal survival. 

Self-reflective consciousness is a unique human capacity. If consciousness is a state of being aware "especially of something within ourselves" that awareness is integrally tied with how we experience the awareness "within" in relation to our experience of how it relates to what we are conscious and aware of outside ourselves as well. Since the dawn of human consciousness, behavior has been guided by what we value, what we determine to be ‘good’ or ‘better’ choices for ourselves individually and collectively. Yet conscious choice, self-reflection and even rational thinking are usually secondary to habitual behavior informed by our personal and cultural experience. It is not only explicit knowledge that shapes us, but the implicit understanding of meaning and context which we each accumulate from personal experience and cultural interaction (Samples, 1981). If we were to consciously reflect and analyze every choice we made, the result would be a sort of paralysis-it simply is not practical. Moreover, much of the knowledge we gain experientially, like "knowing" we are in love, is almost impossible to reflect and analyze in a conscious language. Yet experiential knowledge seems to make up the most permanent and solid bricks in our subconscious foundation for choice. If we experience rejection, then the "truth" of our unworthiness persists in our subconscious, and that belief will influence our decisions and behavior until we consciously reason a new conclusion or until we experience acceptance and feeling worthy (Stalinski, 2001). 

It is no wonder that Gebser, then calls so strongly for the ‘concrete’-the experiential and tangible in the quest for integral consciousness. The age of reason has diminished the value for tacit knowledge and experiential learning and has relegated value only to that which can be proven rationally, empirically. Given new advances in physics, systems theory and evolutionary theory, even this wouldn’t be so bad except that few bother to learn about these new understandings. Instead, habitual behavior and lives guided by subconscious understanding and meaning of the world and our place in it have taken over, especially in western cultures. And regardless of how embedded we are in a consciousness dominated by the rational, much of our living is based on the subconscious meaning we give to the experiences in our lives. 

If the human tragedies in the United States witnessed around the globe on September 11, 2001 have any positive outcome, it is that many in western societies have been jarred from their comfort and subconscious behaviors. Many are once again reflecting consciously about meaning, values and behavior. While some yearn to return to the comfort and ease of their slumber, many more, now awake, are seeking new ways of understanding and being in the world. While the Internet has done much to ‘globalize’ our awareness, the terrorist attacks of September 11 have done much to "widen our awareness" on a much more tangible and experiential level. This experience has come at an incredibly high price for such and externally induced widening of awareness, a "penalty" for indulging in our sweet isolation and self-righteousness, instead of growing and gardening awareness jointly and on a healthy gradient. 

Humanity has come to realize that we can perceive and share dimensions outside our direct "reach,"- that with the help of technology we can even "immerse" into other realms or worlds, whether they be micro-cosm or macro-cosm, or other times, cultures, and ways to feel and express ourselves. A wide community of concerned generalists has cared to find ways to communicate the new dimensions of Global Change and modern means of transportation and communication, but on the political agenda all to often is the narrow scope of a certain region or narrow time frame. The Club of Rome Report from 1972 (Donella Meadows et. al.) showed so clearly where our focus is and what the span of issues includes, and the early system sciences researchers like Paul Weiss, showed that there is interaction between the levels and scales, and so schemas are needed to include interaction between sections. 

Weiss, Gerard, Rappaport, Laszlo, Koestler, Smuts, Kline, Lorenz/Oser, Taylor, Guilford, Bertalanffy, ...there is an endless list of researchers and system scientists who have been caring about an organismic, comprehensive perspective. Some of them designed comprehensive, holistic, and concrete schemas to put contexts and situations into one coherent framework - A framework which is simple and self-explanatory and at the same time concrete enough to allow new views and practical insights for joint, multi-disciplinary, multi-perspective approaches. Benking (1997) has presented in the Emergence series of the Konrad Lorenz Institute how many unique simple and helpful schemas are around and that a next step is needed to see them in one common frame of references (see above and Brown 1994). The figures of that presentation are available on that web-site, so we kindly ask you to get and consult the picture for further study (Benking 1997)

While the authors have studied extensively the above mentioned scholars and some of their schemas, our hope here is to add some structure, coherence and day-to-day applicability for new empirical understanding by creating a "spacial" model, an immersive model for shared explorations . (For more please see the article in "Knowmap 2001" “Spatial versus Spatial” which outlines the development of the Cognitive Panorama (Benking 1996e) as a meta-paradigm from 1988-2002).

Let us go back to the example above. Will we become more conscious, responsible and caring when going into "orbit" --seeing planet Earth in its beauty? The authors would suggest these "pictures" which we can only see are not tangible and immersive, they are not real and so our "attachment" is fading, especially when we see colourful pictures of the globe now everywhere. We’ve become too accustomed to the visual, not reflecting and wondering any more, nor feeling the "awe as we gaze" as we have lost humility - (free after George Santanya) - after looking at colourful pictures again and again, feeling "dumbed down" (Benking 1998 with reference to the CEC Report: "Towards the Humane Information Society" and Benking 1999 with his “Show or Schau?” reflection of the depth and fideltity of the images and models we use to map our positions and perspectives). 

What we want to explore here is how to make intangibles real (see Lloyd citation above). We want to show in this article that it is not enough to use words and see pictures - even though they might be very appealing and powerful. We need to be "touched” - to develop an externded empathy for the things around us."-We can very well hope that astronauts come back "touched" and transformed by an instant comprehension. See below of seeing one specific "whole" and not just the parts, but we also need to question if this transformation is lasting or not like so many other pictures that become "out of sight - out of mind". The topic of wholeness and healing, feeling part and caring is central here, but in this paper we just want to point for further references to the "Wholeness Seminar" (Mandel, Benking 1994-) .

We need more than words and pictures. We need to experience with all our senses and attach ourselves empirically, rationally and emotionally to new worlds and realities. We need to share and bridge representions (signs), schemas, and models, analogies, metaphors and stories in addition to pictures and words in order to connect us with each other. This bridging of signs in the sense of Peirce is of central concern, as we need to connect the concepts and the contexts (Benking 1996b), the icons and the symbols. C.S. Peirce has introduced the “index” as the third kind of signs, and Benking has shown in (Knowmap 2001) that this index, when seen as part of an underlaying map or model, is able to make “concrete” concepts and impressions across langagues and cultures, at least in an overview or survey mode for knowing.

Gebser, in his "The Ever-Present Origin" speaks of the concretion of time as ONE of the preconditions of the integral, stating "only the concrete can be integrated." The authors believe he is suggesting ‘concreteness’ as being more than just having an intuitive “gut” and individual "feeling," or sensitizing oneself to be open for new experiences out of old molds and fixations. Instead, we believe Gebser calls us to experience being and realizations in ways which become sharable, collectively observable and experienced.

Before exploring this further, however, it seems relevant to comment on current "cybermania" trends, and technology-driven hopes that we can somehow achieve something in isolation when entering into synthetic "environments." Current technology seems to enable a very critical possibility of sharing "extra" but virtual realities. Through pictures, maybe even virtual reality, immersive cyberpictures or films, we might easily get seduced to a dreamworld or fear and agony world, but these are not real and concrete, they are fake, illusionary and part of an entertainment or edutainment effort with open or questionable outcomes. If, however, in the sharing of illusion as stories or models, individuals can come together in dialogue that affects the heart and mind and creates new, shared meaning, then cyberspace as co-creative space-scape begins to fulfill part of its potential for serving the evolution of consciousness. Please understand, that we could use the eidetic concept of phantasy and imagination - real to many of us - and wait for the artists and architects within us to build art or artefacts, so we can share “new realities”. Virtual reality and Cyberspace is only an extra means to embody something not “real” or not “given” and in this way it is very overestimated. We can better multiply and share with large numbers of people this new artefacts, but on the cost of restricting to a very few senses, neglecting the full spectrum of making meaningful and in a schared way “sense”.Please see in the field of alternative education (Schärli, Benking 1998). 

A Concrete Motto 

In his synoptic table column 17, Gebser is searching for a Motto for the Integral. He plays with the German "Wahrgeben - Wahrnehmen." "Wahrgeben" means to impart truth, whereas "wahrnehmen" suggests merely imparting what we can see with our eyes and measure. 

To the authors, it seems appropriate to clarify "truth" as encompassing both the relative and the reality. While this paper is not the forum for an in-depth exploration on the nature of "truth," to discuss the concretion of the conceptual and abstract suggests to us the reasonableness of embracing both the relative nature and reality of truth. At once, Wahrgeben connotes to us an embodiment of truth to reality, perhaps a small facet of an ultimately unknowable absolute Truth, which we agree is beyond our ability to define in its entirety (an agreement which can be found in nearly all of the world's spiritual traditions). This embodied reality then, is at once relative and real, posing no real paradox or contradiction, and allows participants in a dialogue to experience a facet or perspective of another with understanding that can lead to creative insight.

The authors would like to explore what this motto could look like and how it could be realized. We might not only look into the concretion of time, but also other and extra "dimensions" which could help us to experience and share "Integral Cultures" by being precise and concrete, embodying meaning instead of merely conceptualizing vague definitions or abstract beliefs or dogma - mental exercises which require constant repetition in order to make us resonate with them. 

How to make the intangible real (concrete)? 

Gregory Bateson wrote that we need to develop an antenna for ecological dimensions, to be more aware about the times and act accordingly. It is not enough to just believe in the beauty of the Creation, we must also have the issues concrete and real so we can adjust to "common frames of references" (as above Brown 1994, Benking 1994).

Stalinski (2001) explores the current obstacles to such an experiential embodiment of imparting truth (Wahrgeben) within the current traditional/modern perspective which relies solely on the empirical (wahrnehmen). Further, she identifies the inability of relativist, postmodern perspectives which remain ultimately abstract and vague to offer authentic ‘reality’ or concreteness within the experiential. Instead she proposes the inclusion and transcendence of both predominant current perspectives in such a way that enables us to see, feel, touch, and even measure when appropriate, various ways of understanding, calling the ability to apply and embody ideas, meaning and facts a key criteria for evaluating the abstract and conceptual. Such integration and transcendence ultimately enable diverse perspectives to share and create joint meaning in such a way that honors and acknowledges the value brought by each person or party to a creative dialogue. In short, the potential synergetic emergent of such dialogue could be a-perspective evolving out of multi-perspective consciousness. (Of course, a multi-perspectivist competence must precede the a-perspective).

Brown and Benking (1994) introduce concrete ways of manifesting such a dialogue through awareness of not only the terms and data we use, but to see them in context and perspective through concept and context mapping. (Benking 1996b and other work in the field of terminology research, meta-databases, and translation/switching systems).

Common threads in Patterns of Order and Ordering Schemas 

There is no presentation which stands out and is "better" than other forms and schemas; that all schemas are created to explain and give meaning, provide connections, and have to obey the laws of being easily memorized (being simple) but at the same time practical, versatile, meaningful and in themselves, logical coherent and complete. We have also shown that different cultures typically favor a certain type of schema, and that they can be easily categorized in Gebser’s structures of the archaic, magic, mythic, and matrix structures in the rational "bracket." We have explored in the article on analogies and metaphors how we need to, and can bridge representation, merge and morph and translate between ways of representation, please see (Benking 1998b) and that we need to develop an share an “Integral Agenda” (1988-2002), that we need to develop a birds eye for coherence and connectedness as concerend generalists and not just specialists, See also “SAYING NO - A culture of Refusal”(Benking 2000b).

The above figures show that representations can hold themselves against structures and forms and that the "experience" and wisdom of cultural traditions must be cherished - not neglected or turned down. The figures further demonstrate many practical insights good for community building and helping to connect with the world around us. 

One final remark is in order. In the "Cartographer of Consciousness" by Brian Van Der Horst, "Ron Siegel probes the hallucinating brain to chart hidden features of our mental landscape" (OMNI Magazine Sept. 1980). The authors use Heinrich Kluvers form constants to present a geometric recursion. For this little journey along maps and representations such presentations and transformations can give us an idea of connectedness of physical and mental realms, and that such reprensentations and co-relations are not new but part of many traditions. (Please see the figures in Benking 1998b).

The obstacles to inclusion and transcendence as proposed above remain our current preoccupation in believing in one 'authoritative' map or matrix, the one and only school or 'dogma.' Our contemporary fixation on outdated mechanistic, industrial-era thought relegates value to ‘knowing’ instead of ‘learning’ and we have been deceived by the proponents of modernistic thought to think in terms of one answer "above" or "better" than another. We have been taught that we must always choose between ideas, and that choosing ideas supported by only the empirical or measurable have value. We habitually choose from "either/or" and instead we must consciously practice ways of choosing "both, and." Through the courage to ‘unknow’ we can begin to re-learn, and create anew shared, lived and embodied realities. It is not by ‘discrediting’ or de-valuing that which is empirical and measurable, but through experienced congruency with the empirical and experiential that imparting truth becomes a way of being with ourselves and each other and not merely a way of knowing or understanding. The “evolution” of the presentation of the chemical elements proved (see again Benking 1998b) that there are many views and schemata possible and even they altogether are just maps, not the territory, as Alfred Korzybski and Gregory Bateson wrote. 

In the figures mentioned above, it is interesting to note not only what different "wheel" or charts" attribute to certain sectors, but how they show a flow of meaning and continuation, showing that states of being and mind are not isolated but evolve and change - even in certain sequences. We are not going here into the eneagram or the astrological charts and how they help to see states and connections, but try to make a tentative next step towards the rational and integral - again - please note - by seeing the connection and merging and morphing between states instead of being "stuck" in one form or schema. 

Are we cognitive flatlanders (Ken Wilber) or by our abstract intellectualism and depraved disembodiment; with a high need to go back to spacial and embodied forms? Benking’s recent “Knowmap”article explores the rational and integral structures, not forgetting the body and direct ecological and social environment. We know that other cultures had a very well developed aesthetical and balanced way to sculpture, paint and live with embodied forms in nature. For most of contemporary our societies however, abstract sciences and writing, in combination with being detached from the practical physical world has deprived us from experiencing and understanding such interconnection and interrelation at a tacit level. The authors suggest a need to re-establish our tactile and sensorial gifts in order to make a possible next step - a step we think Gebser intuited and observed as the "evolution and integration of cultures" in The Ever-Present Origin. He foresaw ways to establish artificial synthetic realities (even though they are mediocre to our imagination potentials) but an interesting approach something which is "not-given" but of relevance for our survival and shared approaches and actions. We as humans are continuously making assumptions and drawing conclusions, often based on metaphoric reasoning and analogies. Building Models (see education section in "Knowmap") is a native skill and we just need to check if we want to build models which can be jointly explored and discussed - build in models and in thinking spacial is according the Architect Alfred Loos a social endeavour, a social task. Models are mediocre when compared to the realities or our imagination, but as physical or virtual models they can be jointly accessed, immersed into in real life or in “cyberspace” (as noted above), and realised wanted or something we should better avoid. It is definitely better to share agreement and not to make all possible models and actions "real." 

Dialogue and Understanding in an a-perspective mode. 

Sharing conceptual positions and perspective in order to "see with other eyes" and thereby developing tolerance and understanding by seeing statements and assumptions in perspective and according to the specific situations, requires to see something not there, not in this space or our present reality, but be able to talk and dialogue about it. We understand here a - perspective as a means to explore and jointly inhabit extra-spaces for allowing us to assume "new" virtual or potential imagery or just abstract conceptual viewpoints, like a "bird’s - eye" or a "long-view" collectively - jointly moving into 4 or more dimensional shared spaces..(as above) (see also “The House of Eyes” Benking, Rose 1998).

Again, a brief sidebar is in order to clarify the authors’ value for understanding through tolerance. An eastern definition of "tolerance" is expressed in the Tibetan term for patience: “sopa,” which means "able to withstand." In the Tibetan tradition, tolerance is not an indifference or an apathy, it is an act of courageous participation and engagement. It is not in the least passive, but is an active response to a situation that would normally give rise to fear or anger. Tolerance, in the eastern tradition is an act of active strength and courage, not one of "putting up with" in a spirit of submission, resignation or withdrawal. (His Holiness the Dalai Lama, 1996)

According to Bohm and Peat (1987) sharp distinctions should be made between dialogue and discussion. In discussions the objective is to present one’s view in order to convince the other. With some luck, this process may result in some sort of compromise, "but it does not give rise to anything creative" (p. 241). At worst, this sort of back-and-forth discourse leads to conflict or even avoidance of the issue. Dialogue, in contrast, is rooted in the Greek word dialogos, literally meaning "through (dia) the word (logos)" (Bohm and Peat, 1987; Pattakos in Banathy, 1996). Pattakos, notes Banathy, further suggests that various interpretations and translations of logos suggest a much richer, deeper meaning than "the word" or "the meaning of the word." Logos, according to Pattakos carries significant spiritual implications, that it can connote "a manifestation of spirit or soul" giving the concept of dialogue a much more meaningful and significant definition. This deeper understanding can be conceptualized then as a spirit which connects the members of a dialogue, creating a collective mindset or ‘collective learning.’ (Pattakos, in Banathy, p. 216). 

The root meaning of conversation, Banathy notes, is "to turn to one another." (p. 219). Systems scholar Alexander Christakis (2000) shared with members of the ISI research community during our annual conference at Asilomar that the Greek word for conversation is syzitisis, which means "to search together" Through such conversation, a demosophia emerges within a group, which is experienced as the "wisdom of the people". Such understandings of the nature of conversation as an integration of generative and strategic dialogue, gives rich context to its meaning and purpose. Indeed, Banathy notes the purpose of giving appropriate time and energy to the generative dialogue within a conversation is to create a shared worldview and shared meaning within and among the group (p. 218). 

These rich concepts of the nature of dialogue and conversation have inspired the research team on the Design of Healthy & Authentic Community at the International Systems Institute to explore possibilities for design conversation which can transcend the idea of ‘searching together’ beyond processes of verbal communication. For two years the team collaborated with the team on Evolutionary Learning Community, and included non-scholars and youth in their inquiry process. Understanding the importance of experience to bring meaning to conceptual, often abstract ideas, the combined teams engaged in various activities in addition to traditional, verbal communication. The teams integrated a variety of supportive experiential conversation "tools" such as co-created art, music, a trip to an equine sanctuary in the exploration of stewardship, and discussed other ways cultures expressed and experienced themselves, including food and meals, dance, and its relationship with the natural world. The contribution of Christakis’ expansion on the definition of ‘conversation’ provides depth and breadth to the idea and its meaning, suggesting that groups can "engage in a conversation-guided process that will seek to experience and convey [a community’s] evolving demosophia through consciously co-created cultural expression" (Stalinski, 2001a). 

It has been said that wisdom is knowledge applied. As humans, we seem to learn best by experience. Although verbal and written communication is a powerful tool for sharing, conceptualising and imagine new perspectives and possibilities, applying those new ideas makes them ‘real’ and gives meaning to information. Anyone who has teenagers knows how exasperating it can be to simply try to convey possible consequences to behaviour. We seem to learn best in "the school of Experience." The experiences we have over our lifetime, as noted earlier, will either reinforce or contradict the values we hold at the time. Considering the impact of experience on our subconscious and consciously-reflected values, and its ability to transform those values and subsequent behaviours and choices, it is surprising how little importance is given to the value of experiential learning. We suggested earlier that new information can be tested against our personal experience congruency in order to evaluate it usefulness. Actually, we’d suggest that we’ll do this anyway, if even at a subconscious level. At least if we make a conscious effort to reflect on this congruency, we can then also question whether our experience has resulted in learning which serves our sense of meaning and purpose as well as the resulting values. Conversation and dialogue engaged in with an emphasis on the experiential seems a healthy environment in which such fundamental perceptions and perspectives can be explored, evaluated and if necessary, re-created. (Stalinski 2001). 

Dialogue in a-perspective mode is dialogue of Wahrgeben. It is a meaningful, shared experience of co-creation and includes the rational, but not at the expense of interactive myth, magic, metaphor, stories, play, artistic expression. 

We called such a participatory peace dialogue at the International Peace University "Magic Round Tables" a place where you jointly embody issues and find ways to include the “missionaries” and "talkers" in a joint and peaceful endeavor you can call generations and intercultural dialogue. See open-forum.de and their the account of experiences doing this process under the title “re-inventing democracy” or “getting along with the “talkers””.

It is hard to get along with people you live with as we all have different experiences, expectations and perspectives. "Others" or "Aliens" are all too often excluded as they do not share the same up-bringing and values. The question is:do we want to have boundaries everywhere, everybody in his "cocoon" hoping to be safe, or do we want to develop jointly towards feeling as a greater "whole"? We feel that Gebser saw a way to expand our horizons, and this not by just going somewhere else but including all the earlier steps of evolution, instead of dismissing indispensable levels of human evolution. What we try in this article is to test extra realms for carefully testing "extra" positions & perspectives in order to see where we agree and disagree and where we stand when looking in certain way, and how we can live with such a disagreement, and how it would be like to step out of the picture, seeing on a higher level the commons, so being able to step back from any fight over details we can not understand or oversee.

The alternative is the fight over belief systems in a foggy and vague continuum, a post-modern indecisiveness full of fear and aggression. See Information War and Cyberculture versus a Humane Information Society? (Benking 1998a) or a Kommunikative Gesellschaft (Benking 2000a). Shared models and metaphors only speak to you when you listen, so we tried dialogue and new stories, new analogies and architectures (Benking 1998d) showing that we belong together and that there are alternatives to clashes. One story is that of an extra skin we need to imagine around Gaia, [see: WOC’99], the other is building an imaginary social design (town" like the story in 1001 with Mamun, the son of Harun al Rashid, see Ethics Summit, 1999 contribution (German) and House of Wisdom) Other stories are told around the campfires, real and virtual ones, visit us at vun.org where we try to stay together because we are different, and the difference is the real beauty, mandatory for respect and tolerance.

For House of Wisdom above see also Oikos, Ecumene, Ecudomy


References and Literature:

Banathy, B. H. (1996). Designing social systems in a changing world. New York: Plenum 

Benking. H.: (1990) Global Change exhibition, System Earth, http://benking.de/Global-Change/

Benking, H. Harmonization and Access and Assililation, GeoJournal 23.3 249-255, 1991 (Mar) and GeoJournal 26.3 323-334, 1992 (March) GeoJournal Kluwers Academic Publishers, http://www.benking.de/ceptualinstitute/harmonization.htm

-/- (1993) "Proposing a New World View - Our View-of-Life is too flat" WFSF, Turku, Finland, http://www.ceptualinstitute.com/genre/benking/edu/education.htm

Benking, H, Schwitte, Josef (1993) Integrale Unweltwissenschaften, Hans Jonas 90th Birthday Symposium, Hofgeismar http://benking.de/jonas1993.html

-/-, on belaf of Brown, N (1994) Proposing a ConceptualSuperstructure, Work-Report of a Vision to explore issue-scapes like virtual landscapes by making use of Surveyors' abilities and Views, FIG XX, Melbourne, 1994, http://www.ceptualinstitute.com/genre/benking/melbourne.htm

-/-, Judge A.J.N. (1994) Design Considerations for Spatial Metaphors - reflections on the evolution of of viewpoint transporttion systems- ECHT 94 Workshop on Spatial metaphors, Edinburg, http://www.lcc.gatech.edu and http://benking.de/ECHT94.html

-/- (1995) "Optics and Ethics” and “Robust Paths to Global Stabiltiy”, WFSF, Nairobi Kenia, http://benking.de/wfsf1995.html

-/- (1996a) Embodying Synthetic Spacial Meanings and Situations: Challenges to Appresentation and Apprehension, Sustainable Peace in the World System, and the next Evolution of Human Consciousness, Fortiest Annual Meeting, ISSS, Budapest, September 17-20, 1996, http://benking.de/isss1996.html

-/- (1996b) Concept and Context Mapping - Towards common frames of references, TKE 96, Wien, http://benking.de/TKE96.html

-/- (1996c) A Metapardigm or Shareable Framework” and “A Paradigm Shift? - Orchestrating Representations...”; Conference On a New Space for Culture and Society - New Ideas for Science and Arts, Council of Europe, Prag 1996, http://benking.de/meta-paradigm.htm

-/- (1997) Altenberg Workshops , Austria, Worldview Compositions and Cognitive Spaces a necessary evolutionary step, Altenberg Workshops, Seminar 1996/97, 30. January 1997 , EMERGENZ UND DIE PSYCHOLOGIE DES MENSCHEN, http://benking.de/worldview-compositions.html

-/- (1998a) A Humane Information Society or Information War?, see Ref 2, European Union ACTS Programme USINACTS Project at: http://benking.de/information-society-1998.htm

-/-. (1998b) Sharing and Changing Realities, Computation for Metaphors, Analogy, Agents, Aizu-Wakamatsu- City, Japan, http://www.ceptualinstitute.com/genre/benking/landscape.htm

-/- (1998c) Switching Systems, TKE 98, Innsbruck, http://benking.de/TKE-99.html

-/- (1998d)Now Horizons and Orientation Thanks to a New Mental Architecture, International Design Forum (IFG) Ulm- Internationales Forum für Gestaltung,http://benking.de/IFGestaltung_Ulm.html

-/-, Rose, J (1998): A HOUSE OF HORIZONS AND PERSPECTIVES A cognitive deep open-space for positioning, comparing, merging and morphing our metaphors, models, maps and views, ISSS_ISIS, Atlanta http://www.ceptualinstitute.com/uiu_plus/isss98/house-of-eyes.htm

-/- (1999) Sharing an Extra Skin, WOC 99, Toronto, http://benking.de/extra_skin.html

-/- (1999-2000) Show or Schau? Round-Table Comments for Caldwell’s "Is Humanity Destined to Self-Destruct?" http://www.benking.de/show-schau.htm

-/- (2000a) Kommunikative Gesellschaft, Studium Generale, Humboldt Univestity Berlin, http://benking.de/Kommunikative_Gesellschaft.html

-/- (2000b) “SAYING NO - A Culture of Refusal” "Ohne Zusammenhang kein Zusammenhalt" http://www.benking.de/verweigerung.html

-/- (2000c) Auf dem Weg zu einer individuellen und kollektiven Ethik,  einer Ethik für erweiterte Kontexte mit Hand, Herz und Kopf,NEUE WERTE FÜR DAS 21. JAHRHUNDERT , Transdisziplinäres Kolloquium Ehics Summit, Kühlungsborn, http://benking.de/ethikgipfel.html

-/- (2001) Spacial versus Spatial: Knowmap:Knowledge Magazine: http://benking.de/benking_mapping.htm and: http://benking.de/Global-Change/spatial-spacial.html

-/- (2001) An Integral Agenda for Coping with Globalisation and Cyberculture - A Report and Reflections and about sharing extra dimensions and modern (communication) technologies, Sustainable infomation Society - Values and Everyday Life, Kouvola, Sept 2001, http://www.kouvola.fi/SIS-Kouvola, http://benking.de/sis2001.htm

Heiner Benking (2001) Towards A General Theory of Systems and Congruence? Spacial and embodied mapping and modeling of Autonmy, Wholeness, and Congruency, Unity in Diversity, Ludwig von Bertalanffy, 100th Anniversary Conference, University of Vienna, November 1-4, 2001, Vienna, Austria, http://benking.de/systems_and_congruence.html(final version under prepartion)

Benking, H., Stalinski, S. (2001a) Dialogue toward Unity in Diversity, Unity in Diversity, Ludwig von Bertalanffy, 100th Anniversary Conference, University of Vienna, November 1-4, 2001, Vienna, Austria, http://benking.de/Dialogue_toward_Unity_in_Diversity.html

-/- (2002) Linguistic vs.Iconic Turn?, EC-MEDICI CeBIT Hannover presentation: http://benking.de/medici2002.htm

Benking, H., Martin, Meurs M.v. (1997) History, Concepts and Potentials of Holism,Holistic Aspects in Systems Research, InterSymp ‘97, Baden-Baden, http://www.ceptualinstitute.com/genre/benking/holismsmuts.htm

Bohm D. and Peat D. (1987) Science, Order & Creativity. NY: Bantam

Brown, N Jahre alt. (March 1994) AGENDA 21: Blueprint for Global Sustainability, New Opportunities for Earth Systems Management, 7th Remote Systems Conference, Melbourne, Australia IN: FIG XX, Melbourne: Proposing a Conceptual Superstructure, http://benking.de/Global-Change/FIGXX-Melbourne-1994.htm

CENTER LEO APOSTEL (1994 ) VU-Brussels, World Views: from fragmentation to integration, http://www.vub.ac.be/CLEA/pub/books/worldviews.html

Council of Europe: New Ideas in Science and Art, New Sspaces for Culture and Society, see here also Benking "Cognitve Panorama 3Space/Time" http://benking.de/meta-paradigm.htm

Christakis, A. (2001) “The Dialogue Game.” Paoll, PA: CWA Ltd. http://www.cwaltd.com/

Dalai Lama, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, (1996), "The Good Heart" Boston: Wisdom Publications

Ethics Summit: Individual and Collective Ethics, an Ethics with hand, Heart, and Mind, http://www.benking.de/ethikgipfel.html

Francois, Charles: (1997) International Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics, KG Sauer, München

Gebser, J. (1984) EVER – PRESENT ORIGIN see for the original and details: http://www.integraleweltsicht.de/Gebser_Texte/gebser_texte.html http://www.integraleweltsicht.de/Gebser_Texte/U_G_Konkretion/body_u_g_konkretion.htmOriginal Ursprung und Gegenwart 1954 

Guilford, J. P., The Nature of Human Intelligence, New York: McGraw Hill, 1967. Structure of Intellect. Cf. the work of Kim Veltman and Heiner Benking on culture navigation, see: Veltman and http://benking.de/avi.htm

“Integral Agenda” (1988-2002) http://www.benking.de/Global-Change/global-integral-agenda.html

Járos, György (2001): Smuts' Holism: 75 years in the wilderness, Ludwig von Bertalanffy, 100th Anniversary Conference, University of Vienna, November 1-4, 2001, Vienna, Austria, http://bertalanffy.iguw.tuwien.ac.at/sym2_1.html

Judge, J.N.: Navigating Alternative Conceptual Realities - clues to the dynamics of enacting new paradigms through movement, UIA, Brussels,http://www.uia.org/uiadocs/detach.htm

Judge, J.N.: Patterning Archetypal Templates of Emergent Order - implications of diamond faceting for enlightening dialogue, UIA, Brussels,http://www.uia.org/uiadocs/diamond.htm

Judge, J.N.: Research on Transdisciplinarity: Knowledge Representation and Conceptual Integration, UIA, Brussels,http://www.uia.org/uiares/resknow.htm

Kline, S. J. (1996) The powers and limitations of reductionism and synoptism: Programme in Science, Technology and Society Report CF1, Stanford University

KNOWMAP e-Magazine: http://www.knowmap.org - http://benking.de/benking_mapping.htm

Koestler, A. (1968) Das Gespenst in der Maschine, Molden, München

Koestler, A. (1979) Janus: A summing up, Hutchinson, London 

Krippner, S., Powers S.M. (1997) (eds), Broken Images, Broken Selves: Dissociative Narratives in Clinical Practice, Brunner/Mazel Publishers

Laszlo. E., Artigani, R., Combs, A., Csanyi, V.: (1996) human cognitive maps: past, present, future, Praeger studies on the 21st Century 

Lenser, F., Benking, H.: Cultivating Dialogue with Magic Round Tables, input paper for: New Agoras for the 21st Century:Conscious Self-Guided Evolution, Fuschl 2002, http://open-forum.de/AGORA-Fuschl2002-lenser-benking.htm

Mandel, T.; Benking, H. (eds): (1994 -) ONE_WHOLE (electronic)Wholeness Seminar, ISSS Primer, http://www.newciv.org/ISSS_Primer/seminar.html

Meurs, Martin v.(1997) J.C. Smuts, Staatsman, Holist, Generaal, SAI-Reeks, No.7, Suis-Afrikaanse Instituut - Amsterdam

Neisser, U. (1976) Cognition and Reality: W.H. Freeman, San Francisco

Metzinger T. (1993) Subjekt und Selbstmodell: Die Perspektivität phänomenalen Bewußtseins vor dem Hintergrund einer naturalistischen Theorie mentaler Repräsentationen, Paderborn

Mandel, T., Benking, H. (1994-2001) Wholeness Seminar, ISSS Primer group: See here also Panorama of Understanding: http://benking.de/ISSS-Primer-wholeness.html

Meurs, MIT. (1997) J.C. Smuts, Staatsman, Holist, Generaal, SAI-Reeks, No.7, Suis-Afrikaanse Instituut - Amsterdam

Odera Oruka, H. (1994) (eds) Philosophy, humanity and Ecology Vol.1, Philosophy of Nature and Environemtnal Ethics, ACTS, Press, African Academy of Sciences, Nairobi

Odum, E.P. (1953) Fundamentals of Ecology, German Grundlage der Ökologie, Thieme, Stuttgart (1983)

Oeser, E.: (1988) Das Abenteuer der kollektiven Vernunft - Evolution und Involution in der Wissenschaft, Parey, Hamburg

Oeser; E., Seitelberger; F. (1988) Gehirn, Bewußtsein, Erkenntnis, Dimensionen der modernen Biologie 2), Wiss. Buchges., Darmstadt

Orth, E.W.: (1995) Zur Medialität menschlicher Orientierung, Bausteine zur Philosophie, Bd 10 (eds. Breuninger, R. Giel, K.) Humboldt Studienzentrum, Ulm

Open Forum, see http://open-forum.de/and the DAVID BOHM Dialogues: http://ciiiweb.ijs.si/dialogues/page1.htmfor the broader context and relation to System Sciences see also: http://benking.de/IFSRnov98pp.htm and Culture of Peace: http://benking.de/Culture_of_Peace.htm

Pattakos, A., (1995). Searching for the Soul in Government, in Rediscovering the Soul of Business, Sterling & Stone, Inc., San Francisco, pp.313-326. 

Plessner, H. (1920) Arbeiten zur Urteilkraft bei Kant,

Plessner, H. (1923) Aesthesiologie des Geistes,

Plessner, H. (1928) Die Stufen des Organischen und der Mensch, Suhrkamp Frankfurt 1981, 455psee also : Exzentrische Positionalität -"Eccentric positionality" see more at: http://benking.de/zeiten-welten-wende.htmland "termiology" and knowledge patterns"http://www.ceptualinstitute.com/genre/benking/term/terminology.htm

Rose J. N.(1995) "Understanding the Integral Universe". http://www.ceptualinstitute.com/uiu_plus/UIUcomplete11-99.htmSection 17.http://www.ceptualinstitute.com/uiu_plus/uiuenvelopment.htm

Rossmann, P: THE FUTURE OF HIGHER EDUCATION: For All Worldwide, a Holistic View, Volume I - The Future of Higher Education and Virtual Space, Volume II - Research On Global Crises, Still Primitive?, Volume III - Future Learning and Teaching http://ecolecon.missouri.edu/globalresearch/index.html, I specially refer to: DEVELOPING THE WHOLE PERSON, Increasing Brain Power, Intelligence, Creativity, Imagination: http://ecolecon.missouri.edu/globalresearch/chapters/3-05.html

Samples, B. (1981) Mind of our mother: Toward holonomy and planetary consciousness. Addison-Wesley

Schärli, O. Magisches und Mythisches im ganzheitlichen Wahrnehmen von Mensch und Architektur, Beiträge zur Integralen Weltsicht,Jahrbuch der Jean Gebser Gesellschaft, Vol. XII (1997)ISBN3-907 160-15-0

Schärli, O., Benking, H. (1998) Durch die Sinne zum Sinn - von Kultur zu Cybeculture? Effe-Symposium, Humboldt University, Berlin English Version http://benking.de/effe1998.html

Schwarzkopf, F. (1995) The Metamorphosis of the Given : Toward an Ecology of Consciousness, Peter Lang Series: Revisioning Philosophy 20, ISBN 0-8204-2585-0

Smuts, J.C.: (1926) Holism and Evolution, http://www.isss.org/primer/smuts.htm

Smuts, J.C.: (1938) Die Holistische Welt, Berlin

Stalinski, S. (2001a) International Systems Institute Conversations Newsletter. Team Announcement, June 2001. 

Stalinski, S. (2001b) Creating futures: A systems view of transformation for our organizations, communities and world. Tucson, AZ: Aurora Now Foundation

Veltman, K (2000) Augmented Books, Knowledge, and Culture, INET 2000, http://www.isoc.org/inet2000/cdproceedings/6d/6d_1.htm

Weiss, P (1968) Interactive relations among hierarchically ordered subsystems, of an organism, Inscribed Domains, In: Beyond reductionism, Alpbach, also in: http://benking.de/worldview-compositions.html

Wilber, K: Eye to Eye, The Quest for a new Paradigm, Anchor Press / Doubleday, New York

WOC 99: World Order Conference: Heiner Benking Sharing an Extra Skin, Toronto, http://benking.de/extra_skin.html