On Wed, 27 Sep 1995 email@example.com wrote:
[ after comparing 4-year-olds and Stephen Hawking ]
> What strikes me is that there is very little difference between these sets
> of questions. Each asks simple, fundamental things. But in the business
> setting, it seems to be hard to ask such fundamental questions.
I like _very_ much your juxtaposition of the 4-year-old's questions with
those of Stephen Hawking. That's one of those examples that's so
intrinsically provocative it hardly needs any commentary.
Further down, reflecting on that abyss that seems to lie between doing
things (in business) and questioning them (e.g. here), you hit a couple
more threads: language, and that infernal and omnipresent presupposition
-- which Dave had alluded to -- that all questions are ulterior.
I wonder whether, at the _BOTTOM_MOST_ layers of our minds, there isn't
some really animal stuff going on when someone responds only to the
presupposition and not the question itself. In a business, after all,
we're _doing_ things -- good, bad, or indifferent, archaic or modern,
happy or sad, LO or not, we're doing something. Our explicit purpose and
goal can really not be anything else. For example, if we got a big group
together and said our purpose was contemplation, we'd have a church or
temple or monastery but not a business. If, in that same group, we
decided to hold a bake sale to support our contemplation, then -- at least
for as long as the bake sale took to organize and conduct -- we'd have a
I really think this is a _very_ fundamental distinction, and a simple one.
Even my little example has the beginning of complication in it, however.
At any rate, if while we're organizing the bake sale a couple of people
start "asking questions" -- the prevailing mindset, the interpretive
default for these questions, is that they must have something to do with
our bake-sale strategies. Now if they really _don't_ -- if they are
reflective, meditative questions instead -- there's going to be a real
failure of communication.
> Perhaps people's theories and assumptions form a sort of
> territory that fundamental questions challenge. I'd be interested in
> people's thoughts.
I think you're right. And I don't really see how -- at least with regard
to fundamental human nature -- we'll ever change that. It is not possible
for me to ride a bike while I'm seriously thinking out how to ride a bike.
Very much of our reflection, on this thread, has to do with that duality
in us. I don't believe that it is emotional in origin; I don't believe
that it originates in anybody's particular fears of anything: unless,
perhaps, the fear of falling off the bike in consequence of thinking too
hard about NOT falling off the bike.
But then, if this analysis of mine is right, what can we say about those
disciplines such as Aikido? Surely the art they represent is -- precisely
-- some art that overcomes that duality.
What would it be for the _organization_ to practice Aikido?
Might it be -- among other things -- to be able to use reflective,
contemplative, open-ended questions, personal dialog, to arrive at action?
To _be_ the actions arrived at?
-- Regards Jim Michmerhuizen firstname.lastname@example.org web residence at http://world.std.com/~jamzen/ -----------------------------------------------------^--------------------- . . . . . . . . . . Actions speak louder than words . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . but not as clearly . . . . . . . . . .