Posts Tagged ‘yang’

Q27- Combining Megatrends #1 and #2: the Next Societal Innovations?

May 18, 2009

I introduced trans-societal Megatrend #1 in an earlier blog (“Q14- Naming Trans-Societal Megatrend #1: towards Yin?”). I summarized Megatrend #1 (see blog “KM and trans-societal megatrend #1”) as:


Trans-societal Megatrend #2 (introduced in blog Q26- Information: another Force for Democratization) can be summarized as:

Megatrend #2

If we combine these two megatrends and again use Ken Wilber’s framework, we have a new way of characterizing major societal innovations and anticipating where the next major societal innovations would be emerging:

Combining 2 megatrends

Do you agree with the following observations?

  1. The combined trend is towards the lower left or indigo-colored Quadrant 4 in the figure above. Using simplistic language, the trend is towards the democratization of religions (Quadrant 1 to 4) and the spiritualization of democracy, free markets and science (Quadrant 3 to 4).
  2. There is a mega-tension between Quadrants 1 and 3 which can be seen in the conflict between Western democratic values versus Islamic fundamentalism and theocracy (which underlies the events in Iraq and Afghanistan, terrorist attacks in Europe and North America, and tension between European cultures and cultures of Muslim immigrants in Europe), the conflict between scientific empiricism and religious faith (seen in Matthew Fox’s creation spirituality versus traditional Catholic doctrines, Darwinian evolution versus creationism from Genesis), and the conflict between laissez faire capitalism and various economic models that emphasize the humanistic, psychological and spiritual dimensions (such as “Small is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered” by Schumacher, Bhutan King Jigme Singye Wangchuck’s “Gross National Happiness”).
  3. Regressive forces are represented by those groups which aim to maintain or go back to communism, dictatorship, theocracy, monopolistic control of national economies, etc.
  4. New practices are emerging in Quadrant 4, which I call “indigo practices.” I will write about this in another blog. The interactive practice in double-loop learning that I am proposing in the last blog (An Invitation to Interactive Practice of Double-Loop Learning) is an indigo practice.
  5. A most interesting convergence between Quadrants 1 and 3 is happening between Tibetan Buddhism and modern science: the Mind and Life Institute. Tibetan Buddhism comes from centuries of learning, experiential studies and applying consensual corroboration in the inner worlds; while modern sciences comes from centuries of learning, empirical studies and applying consensual corroboration in the outer worlds.

interesting convergence

I introduced the ideas in this blog in an earlier paper on “Information Technology and Security in the 21st Century” which I read at the Asia-Pacific Security Forum Conference in Taipei, Taiwan in December 1999.

Please tell us what you think about these.

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KM and Trans-Societal Megatrend #1

May 5, 2009

Trans-societal Megatrend #1 (see Q14- Naming trans-societal Megatrend #1: “towards yin”?) can be viewed from Ken Wilber’s framework, as in the following diagram.


When we were looking at “Tacit-Group Processes in KM” and “Gaia Consciousness”, we were in fact using Ken Wilber’s framework:

Expanded KM framework at the planetary level

When we were examining the global balance sheet of tangible and intangible assets (see “Towards a Global Balance Sheet”), we were also using Ken Wilber’s framework:


In fact, the expanded KM framework (see “Practical Exercise: Ingredients of Effective Group Action #15”) emerged from the simple observation that answers to “What are the ingredients of effective group action?” can be grouped in a way from where the commonly-accepted categories of intellectual capital or knowledge assets naturally emerge! Surprisingly, the grouping is consistent with Ken Wilber’s framework.


Which falls neatly into the categories of intellectual capital:


Now, what we are observing (see Q14- Naming trans-societal Megatrend #1: “towards yin”?) is that there is a global megatrend running across many sectors of society: corporate wealth creation, global economy, community development, educational psychology, national development, national security, attitudes to environment, psychology, international conflicts, religion and organizational dynamics. In other words, the megatrend is trans-societal. It can be summarized as:


What do you think?

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Q14- Naming Trans-Societal Megatrend #1: “Towards Yin”?

February 13, 2009

Let us practice discerning patterns or sensing the emergent. In simple words, let us practice “connecting the dots.”

What seems to be the common or underlying thread across the following trends?

Corporate wealth: intangible assets, and no longer tangible assets, constitute most of market value of corporations. Intangible assets include human and relationship capital. Most of organizational knowledge is in the form of tacit knowledge instead of explicit knowledge.

Global economy: In most national economies, more GDP is being created from services (human knowledge) than from industry (processing of resources).

Community development: successful anti-poverty projects are those that leverage on a community’s intangible assets (and not on its tangible assets).

Educational psychology: Intelligence was believed by psychologists to be basically only twofold: mathematical and linguistic. Now, multiple intelligence is recognized, which also includes emotional, spatial, inter-personal and intra-personal intelligence. Many researchers found that EQ is the more important determinant of success at work and in life than IQ. A “spiritual quotient” was also proposed.

National development: Before, development was viewed in largely economic terms (measured in GNP or GDP); now the prevailing goal is sustainable development which also includes the socio-cultural and ecological dimensions. UNDP developed the Human Development Index to complement GDP and other material measures. Gender equality is becoming a global norm.

Security: Before, security was viewed from statist and military terms. Now there are terms used in the United Nations discourses such as “food security”, “ecological security” and “human security”.

Attitude to environment: A shift is taking place from control perspective to harmony perspective and from man-nature dichotomy to man-as-part-of-nature or organic thinking.

Psychology: Empirical-clinical psychology is now complemented by paranormal psychology, transpersonal psychology and phenomenological research.

International conflicts: Root-causes of conflicts before were largely ideological and territorial; now conflicts are also non-military and due to trade, technological, religious and ethnic-cultural causes.

Religion: Beliefs in a male or transcendent God are now complemented by beliefs in a female or immanent God; in Christianity, creation spirituality is an alternative to fall-redemption spirituality. In Catholicism, Vatican II shifted towards priesthood of the laity.

Organizational dynamics: A shift is going on from hierarchical or vertical dynamics to more flat or network dynamics; from a Taylorist and mechanic view of organizations to a Senge and learning-growing or gardener view of organizations.

What is happening? Can you connect the dots? The connection seems to be cutting across various disciplines and sectors: it is trans-societal. It is a trend across many trends: it is a mega-trend

What qualities seem to be emerging?



How do we name this trans-societal mega-trend? After I presented the above ideas in a conference in Taipeh in 1999, a Singaporean professor suggested that the above changes can be described, using the Yin-Yang Chinese cosmology, as a movement towards Yin. [Thank you to Catherine Auman who suggested that we are not replacing Yang with Yin but we are moving towards a world where both are equally valued.]

Do you agree? What do you think?

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