Archive for the ‘Consciousness’ Category

Conscious Capitalism

December 20, 2018

Conscious Capitalism is a philosophy of business and also a corporation that tries to promote better social practices than ordinary (predatory) capitalism. Or perhaps it is mainly intended to make you (either as consumer or producer) think that capitalism can be kinder and gentler.

Conscious Capitalism consists of four principles:

  • Conscious Leadership
  • Higher Purpose
  • Conscious Culture
  • Stakeholder integration

John Mackey one of the authors for a book about Conscious Capitalism, and is well-known as being a co-founder of Whole Foods, the grocery store chain that Amazon bought in 2017. Mackey has been in the news over the years as being against the Affordable Care Act, anti-union, and even skeptical about human-caused climate change. I’m not sure how he stands on these issues now.

From the Conscious Capitalist Credo on their web site:

“We believe that business is good because it creates value, it is ethical because it is based on voluntary exchange, it is noble because it can elevate our existence and it is heroic because it lifts people out of poverty and creates prosperity. Free enterprise capitalism is the most powerful system for social cooperation and human progress ever conceived. It is one of the most compelling ideas we humans have ever had. But we can aspire to even more.”

So it is basically capitalism with a conscious. Don’t get me wrong, if their corporation can make a difference in the way that capitalism is usually practiced then I’m all for it. But it is likely too little, too late.

Further Reading:

https://www.consciouscapitalism.org/

John Mackey and Rajendra Sisodia / Conscious Capitalism: liberating the heroic spirit of business (2013)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Mackey_(businessman)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whole_Foods_Market

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conscious_business

[*11.19]

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Analogical Thinking

January 20, 2017

sq_analogicalIs analogy or metaphor the root of thinking? Some thinkers think so. But what exactly is analogy?

Looking at various lists of analogies of the A:B::C:D motif, I have distilled them into four groups: Relational, Hierarchical, Linguistical, and Mathematical. Are there analogies that don’t fit this scheme?

Relational

Object / characteristic
Order, sequence
Transformation
Agent / object, action
Function, purpose
Cause / effect
Source / product

Hierarchical

Classification, category, type, membership
Whole / part
General / specific

Linguistical

Meaning, definition
Synonym, antonym
Contrast, degree, intensity
Word parts
Expressions

Mathematical

Equivalence
Multiples
Negation
Patterns, geometries
Number
Size, magnitude
Direction, vectors
Spacial, temporal
Ratio, proportion

References:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Analogy

http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/book-review/surfaces-and-essences-analogy-fuel-and-fire-thinking

View story at Medium.com

Currently Reading:

George Lakoff, Mark Johnson / Metaphors We Live By

To Read:

Douglas Hofstadter, Emmanuel Sander / Surfaces and Essences: analogy as the fuel and fire of thinking, Basic Books (2013)

Noah Roderick / The Being of Analogy, Open Humanities Press (2016)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Functor

[*9.140, *9.141, *9.178]

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The Four Transcendental Imperatives of Bernard Lonergan

December 9, 2015

sq_lonerganJesuit and theologian Bernard Lonergan had a worthy goal: to generalize the successful methods of science to all facets of human inquiry. Most particularly, he sought to consider not only exterior data from sensation but interior data from consciousness. He presented four epistemological precepts of ‘being’ that transcended cultural norms, to inform all domains of human knowing and knowledge:

Being Attentive
in Experience

Being Intelligent
in Understanding

Being Reasonable
in Judgment

Being Responsible
in Deciding

In addition, his Generalized Empirical Method (GEM) had four facets, and four methodological questions:

Cognitional
What do I do when I know?

Epistemological
Why is doing that knowing?

Metaphysical
What do I know when I do it?

Methodological
What therefore should we do?

These are certainly worthy precepts, domains, facets, and questions. How well have his techniques worked? At one time, Lonergan was said to be considered by many to be one of the finest thinkers of the 20th century.

The summary of the article on Lonergan at the IEP states:

A generalized empirical method in ethics clarifies the subject’s operations regarding values. The effort relies on a personal appropriation of what occurs when making value judgments, on a discovery of innate moral norms, and on a grasp of the meaning of moral objectivity. These innate methods of moral consciousness are expressed in explanatory categories, to be used both for conceptualizing for oneself what occurs regarding value judgments and for expressing to others the actual grounds for one’s value positions.

GEM is based on a gamble that the odds of genuine moral development are best when the players lay these intellectual, moral and affective cards on the table. Concretely, this implies a duty to acknowledge the historicity of one’s moral views as well as a readiness to admit oversights in one’s self-knowledge. Moreover, given the proliferation of moral issues that affect confronting cultures with different histories today, it also implies a duty to meet the stranger in a place where this openness can occur.

Lonergan’s imperatives are also somewhat similar to Kolb’s Learning Cycle and the Scientific Method. In both of those fourfolds, observation (sensation) occurs both before (but also cyclically after) experimentation (action). Could this be because these are methods for inquiry as opposed to one of making? Some think there is no distinction, that discovery is always socially constructed anyway, but I disagree.

References:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Lonergan

http://www.iep.utm.edu/lonergan/

http://tipphilosophy.weebly.com/heaps-essay.html

http://lonergan.concordia.ca/reprints/grace-method.htm

http://www.metanexus.net/essay/learning-be-reflections-bernard-lonergans-transcendental-philosophy-education-towards-integral

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Being

http://www.bernardlonergan.com/

Notes:

A good discussion and comparison of learning and inquiry at the Tetrast:

http://tetrast2.blogspot.com/2013/04/methods-of-learning.html

Books:

Bernard Lonergan / Insight: A Study of Human Understanding

Bernard Lonergen / Method in Theology

[*3.122, *3.124, *9.70, *9.72]

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