Monterey Aquarium — Photo by Michael Schär on Unsplash

If you don’t become the ocean you’ll be seasick every day[8]…

20th Century US Theoretical Physicist Richard Feynman[1] once said:

Similarly, David Deutsch in his book The Beginning of Infinity[3] outlines his Theory of Knowledge and how all “knowledge is interconnected”.

To solve the growing imbalances across our society including rising rates of loneliness in our communities, environmental over consumption, increasing social inequality, the growing debt across our global financial system and the challenges emerging across our organisations we need to acknowledge the complexity of the systems we inhabit, our silos of knowledge and the limitations of what we really know.

It’s only through leaning in to the uncertainty, seeking out cognitive diversity, sharing ideas, asking questions, collaborating, problem solving, embracing innovation and entrepreneurship that we have the opportunity to begin addressing the system challenges we face.

A different type of data needs to be embraced, one that begins to connect the What? (big data) with the Why? (thick data).

Deeper meaning and context can only be achieved through beginning to understand our interrelationships and interdependencies.

Systems thinker, writer, and filmmaker Nora Bateson calls this “warm data[4]”.

At the core of this emerging science of complexity is a paradox with stability and instability being prevalent at the same time.

In a recent Esko Kilpi article ”Living with Paradoxes[5]” he presents his perspectives that in a rapidly changing complex world our society needs to shift to a different type of thinking and decision making.

A philosophical shift from Aristotelian formal logic[6] to that of Hegel[7] which recognises complexity and human progress occurs in a dialectic way.

It’s through the debate of competing ideas via a thesis and antithesis that we ultimately arrive at a synthesis.

The article goes on to say…..

A profound paradox exists in this emerging world with our greatest risk being a propensity to avoid any risk given our deep desire for certainty and knowing.

The alternative is for us to be seasick everyday[8]

Photo by Greg Ortega on Unsplash

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