Thursday, August 23, 2007

Wilber on Post-Structuralism

From Excerpt A to Volume 2 Kosmos Trilogy:

Probability Space in the AQAL Matrix

Because "postmodernism" has often meant "post-structuralism," laypeople often misunderstand just what a "structure" is (and is not). Among experts, there is actually a broad and strong agreement as to the meaning of a "structure," which is generally defined--by Sheldrake, Piaget, Habermas, Francisco Varela, Carol Gilligan, Jane Loevinger, etc.--as a "dynamic system of self-organizing processes that maintain themselves as patterns through their dynamic reproduction."8 As dynamic self-maintaining patterns, structures are not fixed and unchanging, but rather are "unstably stable" (or a mixture of "circularity and openness"--i.e., oldness and newness--i.e., karma and creatively--i.e., include and transcend), and thus are capable of flexible adaptation to fluctuations: they evolve through "structural coupling" with enacted environments (we say, "tetra-evolve"). A structure is materially different moment to moment; its pattern or form, however, is unstably stable and endures as a Kosmic habit for as long as that class of holons exists in spacetime (i.e., for as long as it negotiates the selection pressures in the AQAL matrix).

It is common in postmodern forms of "new paradigms" to say that "structure" has been replaced by "process." Actually, of course, structure was always defined as dynamic processes that reproduce themselves. But there are indeed two aspects of structures that researchers keep emphasizing: their capacity for fluid change (e.g., accommodation and adaptation--or adjusting to their communions); and their capacity, if conditions are right, for remaining incredibly stable over long periods of time (e.g., autopoiesis and assimilation--or stable agency).
Deep structures are simply probability waves. Does not cover the great diversity of surface features, expression:

What is required, then, is a way to account for "structure" without falling, shall we say, into structuralism, or a reification of structures as some sort of ontologically existing molds (which is what both the perennial philosophers and the structuralists did, in their own ways, both of which need to be jettisoned in that regard).

We saw that deep features are inherited, not surface features. That is, even though the general patterns (or morphogenetic grooves) of these holons are handed to us by Kosmic karma, all of the actual contents, surface features, and expressions of these habitual patterns are determined by relative, culturally, and personally contingent factors in all four quadrants.

But this is where we start to move beyond any of the typical definitions of "deep structures," "deep features," or "deep patterns": for Integral Post-Metaphysics, a "deep pattern" is not an actually existing form or structure but simply a term that represents the probability of finding a particular type of holon in a particular mode of spacetime.

tags technorati :
tags technorati :


At 4:58 AM, Blogger pelastration said...

The four quadrants are an analytic tool to position processes in a framework, nothing more. The four quadrants are not real energies. "Holons" stay for causality and interconnectivity. Buddhism does not need quantum mechanics and the use of probability waves to explain "deep features". If Integral Post-Metaphysics states that "deep pattern is not an actually existing form or structure but simply a term that represents the probability of finding a particular type of holon in a particular mode of spacetime." it is simply wrong and Ken Wilber guides people in the wrong direction.

To understand holons you need an engineering concept. Wilber stays on the semantic level and seems to need hyped Quantum mechanics concepts as airbag by lack a real engineering picture.

What is the real Holons are multi-layered topological spaces, made from single dynamic spacetime membrane (the Tathagata Womb) which restructures itself locally in billions of multi-layered bell-like baskets (holons). Holons are empty like Buddhism's "empty space-particles". Holons are just restructured membrane which is coupled (knotted) in such a way that these parts of the membrane co-exist. They are joined in a temporal "unity".

Holons have a yang center and a double layered yin cover. This is like the seven koshas (Sthula Sarira, Prana, Vehicle of Prana, Kama Rupa, Mind, Spiritual Soul and Atma) in esoteric Buddhism. These koshas are layered! Are the koshas different form each other? Yes. They keep there proper integrity and thus must be isolated from each other, but they still transfer by surface contact vibrations to each other, and thus influence each other (change properties of the holons or inside holons). The proper unique layer-structure of a holon rules how it can vibrate, like the characteristics of the clapper and the cup of the bell will decide how it sounds.

This means also that the basic membrane (the Tathagata Womb) is indestructible and cannot be cut in pieces. Man can not cut God in pieces. Quantum mechanics cuts God in pieces. Wilber wants to cut God in pieces?

How can the genderless membrane create holons with in-corporated, in-structured ( in-formation = information) properties, have yang and yin co-existing, and being a memory storage system at the same time ? Check: and


At 4:11 PM, Blogger CJ Smith said...


Thanks for the links and the comment. I don't have a lotta time right now, so I'll need some more time to look in what you are describing.

On a first glance, if I understand you rightly, I see a problem of identifying the Womb with a membrane.

Assuming that the single membrane is real, the Womb is that from which the membrane arises.

Tathagata is Suchness. The suchness of both the womb and the holons--again assuming it is as you describe. Otherwise the move from the Womb to holons is a move away from God. There's a danger there of cutting God into pieces as you say. Or rather locating God (cut or uncut) in certain locations and not others.

I don't think Suchness should be identified with any physical concept (however subtle) because its a condition and like all conditions arises and falls.

In general, (again maybe I'm misunderstanding here?), it seems to me you are equating holons solely in 3rd-person physicalist language.

Topological spaces could be extended I suppose to the realms of literature, art, feeling, and awareness.

That aside though I will look into your points about engineering and how holons might form (from the obbjective-it-3rd p. point of view).

But I would say the quadrants are more than positioning "processes" (and I never said they were real "energies"). Energies and processes that on the relative plane have to be balanced, I think, by some sorta self-system (processes/energies of what?). Processes and energies to me is overly objective-physicalist only language. But again maybe you are using the terms differently and I am reading into your words from my background.

Still, the quadrants also for example are a description of forms of human inquiry/study/practice in the world.

Peace. Chris


Post a Comment

<< Home