Fundamental Values

Posted on September 14, 2015

I hope in this page, to list the key beliefs and values I hold. So that I have to minimize explaining those to people when I do meet them in the future. Or to portray as an accurate representation of myself as possible.

The Things to do are: the things that need doing, that you see need to be done, and that no one else seems to see need to be done. Then you will conceive your own way of doing that which needs to be done - that no one else has told you to do or how to do it. This will bring out the real you that often gets buried inside a character that has acquired a superficial array of behaviors induced or imposed by others on the individual.

- R.B. Fuller, Letter to "Micheal" (16 February 1970)


It is necessary for me to stay close to the earthiness of real experience. I cannot live my life in abstractions. So real relationships with persons, hands dirtied in the soil, observing the budding of a flower, or viewing the sunset, are necessary to my life. At least one foot must be in the soil of reality. A finely tuned understanding by another individual gives the recipient a sense of personhood, of identity. In the ordinary interactions of life congruence is probably the most important element. Congruence, or genuineness, involves letting the other person know "who you are" emotionally. It may involve confrontation and the straightforward expression of personally owned feelings - both negative and positive.

- Carl Rogers, A Way of Being

From Wikipedia: Rogers identified the "real self" as the aspect of one's being that is founded in the actualizing tendency, follows organismic valuing, needs and receives positive regard and self-regard. It is the "you" that, if all goes well, you will become. On the other hand, to the extent that our society is out of sync with the actualizing tendency, and we are forced to live with conditions of worth that are out of step with organismic valuing, and receive only conditional positive regard and self-regard, we develop instead an "ideal self". By ideal, Rogers is suggesting something not real, something that is always out of our reach, the standard we cannot meet. This gap between the real self and the ideal self, the "I am" and the "I should" is called incongruity.

The image above shows incongruence on the left and congruence on the right. While Rogers identified congruence as one of the fundamental characteristic of healthy people, I think it is particularly critical to understand and be understood in general.

More: (Book)

High-Order Communication // Dynamic Interaction

While I will restrict this paragraph to human-human communication it is not necessarily the case, as it can extend to self-expression or other entities (like pets). I assert that people are unique entities, and thus interact in a unique fashion, each having their own preferences and traits. As such I only allow labels to the extent where they approximate the person behavior. That is when using labels to describe a person the labels are approximate. In other words, I try to fit the words to the person, and not the person to the words. This is an important subtle point that usually people don't tend to do.

Therefore I do not generally treat people into specific social roles, and let things be completely specific to the person. In my communication with the person whatever is agreed upon depends on the mutual respect and tries to maximize the freedom for the person to experience.

That said, communication requires to be open and honest. Open in the term that I expect the person to voice their concerns relating to me to me. And honest, is important for congruent communicate. Since honesty guarantees proper honest feedback for the person to handle it. And it gives the person the responsibility to choose for themselves.

Not for a moment dare we succumb to the illusion that an archetype can be finally explained and disposed of. Even the best attempts at explanation are only more or less successful translations into another metaphorical language. (Indeed, language itself is only an image.) The most we can do is dream the myth onwards and give it a modern dress. And whatever explanation or interpretation does to it, we do to our own souls as well, with corresponding results for our own well-being. The archetype — let us never forget this — is a psychic organ present in all of us. A bad explanation means a correspondingly bad attitude toward this organ, which may thus be injured. But the ultimate sufferer is the bad interpreter himself.

- C.G Jung, The Psychology of the Child Archetype [Das göttliche Kind] (1941), 1963 translation, II, 1 : The Archetype as a Link with the Past; also in Collected Works, Vol. 9, Part I, p. 160

More: (Post)

Synergy // Collaboration over Competition

I will give you one very simple example of synergy. All our metallic alloys are synergetic. We will examine chrome-nickel-steel. The outstanding characteristic of metallic strength is its ability to cohere in one piece. We test the metals tensile strength per square inch of cross section of the tested sample. The very high number of pounds-per-square-inch tensile strength of chrome-nickel-steel has changed our whole economy because it retained its structural integrity at so high a temperature as to make possible the jet engine which has halved the time it takes to fly around the world. The prime constituents are chromium, nickel, and iron. We will take the highest ultimate tensile strength of those three. The iron’s ultimate tensile strength is about 60,000 pounds per square inch. Nickel’s ultimate is about 80,000 p.s.i. Chromium is about 70,000 p.s.i. Ultimate tensile strengths of the other minor constituents: carbon, manganese, et cetera, added together total about 40,000 psi. If we use the same tensile logic as that applied to a chain and say that a chain is no stronger than its weakest link, then we would assume that chrome-nickel-steel would part at between 40,000 and 60,000 p.s.i. But we find experimentally that is not the case. We find by test that chrome-nickel-steel is 350,000 pounds a square inch which is 50 percent stronger than the sum of the strength of all its alloys. To prove so we add 60,000, 70,000 and 80,000 which comes to 210,000. To this we add the 40,000 of minor alloying constituents which brings the sum of the strengths of all its alloying to only 250,000 pounds a square inch. The explanation for this is Newton’s gravitational law which noted the experimentally proven fact that the relative mass attraction of one body for another is proportioned to the second power of the relative proximity of the two bodies as expressed in the relative diameters of the two bodies. If we have two spherical bodies of equal mass at a given distance from each other and insert a third spherical body of the same mass half way between the two we do not double the mass attraction between any two of the three. We increase the attraction by 2 to the second power which is 4. Halving the distance fourfolds the inter-mass attraction. When we bring a galaxy of iron atoms together with the chromium atoms and a galaxy of nickel atoms they all fit neatly between one another and bring about the multifolding of their intercoherency. But there is nothing in one body by itself that says that it will have mass attraction. This can only be discovered by experimenting with two and more bodies. And even then there is no explanation of why there must be mass attraction and why it should increase as the second power of the relative increase of proximity. That is synergy.

- R.B. Fuller

Are you spontaneously enthusiastic about everyone having everything you can have?

- R.B. Fuller

More: (Preface: Synergetics)

Comprehensive Anticipatory Design Science

A concept best explained by Fuller:

I am enthusiastic over humanity’s extraordinary and sometimes very timely ingenuity. If you are in a shipwreck and all the boats are gone, a piano top buoyant enough to keep you afloat that comes along makes a fortuitous life preserver. But this is not to say that the best way to design a life preserver is in the form of a piano top. I think that we are clinging to a great many piano tops in accepting yesterday’s fortuitous contrivings as constituting the only means for solving a given problem

The function of what I call design science is to solve problems by introducing into the environment new artifacts, the availability of which will induce their spontaneous employment by humans and thus, coincidentally, cause humans to abandon their previous problem-producing behaviors and devices. For example, when humans have a vital need to cross the roaring rapids of a river, as a design scientist I would design them a bridge, causing them, I am sure, to abandon spontaneously and forever the risking of their lives by trying to swim to the other shore.

We must do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.

The politicians, having an automatic bias, were committed to defend and advantage only their own side. Each assumed the validity of the Malthusian-Darwin-you-or-me-to-the-death struggle. Because of the working concept that there was not enough to go around, the most aggressive political leaders exercised their political leadership by heading their countries into war to overcome the rest of the world, thus to dispose of the unsupportable excess population through decimation and starvation-the age-old, lethal formula of ignorant men. Thus we had all our world society specializing, whether under fascism, communism, or capitalism. All the great ideological groups assumed Armageddon.

Getting ready for the assumed inexorable Armageddon, each applied science and all of the great scientific specialization capabilities only toward weaponry, thus developing the ability to destroy themselves totally with no comprehensively organized oppositional thinking capability and initiative powerful enough to co-ordinate and prevent it. Thus by 1946, we were on the swift way to extinction despite the inauguration of the United Nations, to which none of the exclusive sovereign prerogatives were surrendered. Suddenly, all unrecognized as such by society, the evolutionary antibody to the extinction of humanity through specialization appeared in the form of the computer and its comprehensively commanded automation which made man obsolete as a physical production and control specialist-and just in time.

See: Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth. Pages 1-14: The Great Pirates and Overspecialization

Low Effort - High Impact // Ephemeralization

Do more and more with less and less until eventually you can do everything with nothing.

I generally seek to try to always make that little extra effort if needed. Sometimes the smallest acts yield a heavy impact. This is particularly both valid for people and as a general principle.

With people little acts could often go a long way. Since it frustrates me that most people are mostly passive, I try as much as I can to remain proactive. The simplest act can make someone's day or evening.

As a general principle low effort high impact systems yield high efficiency and are generally favorable. Though the concept is most closely associated with Ephemeralization.

A cool example about this is Tansegrity.

Views on Education

This is our mission: to cast a ray of light and pass on. I compare the effects of these first lessons the impressions of a solitary wanderer who is walking serene and happy in a shady grove, meditating; that is leaving his inner thought free to wander. Suddenly a church bell pealing out nearby recalls to himself; then he feels more keenly that peaceful bliss which had already been born, though dormant, within him. To stimulate life, leaving it free, however, to unfold itself, that is the first duty of the educator. For such a delicate mission great art is required to suggest the right moment and to limit intervention, last one should disturb or lead astray rather than help the soul which is coming to life and which will live by virtue of it's own efforts. This art must accompany the scientific method, because the simplicity of our lessons bears a great resemblance to experiments in experimental psychology.

Maria Montessori


Fundamentally, I don't tend to argue any point with anybody. This general default mood is mainly because people often do not ascribe to the laws of proper argumentation. Therefore I am either making sarcastic interjections, or generally just poking fun at people. It is important to note, that I am usually willing to defend both ends of an argument quite vehemently.

I firmly support people's thinking pattern and reasoning, and not the beliefs and/or ideas they hold true to their heart. That is regardless of whether person X beleives in Y, I am more interested to know why and how, and not whether or not they do so. I strongly hate the "herd" instinct groups tend to follow, by herding their members to whether or not belief in {a, b, c, etc} is there.

For example, I would fancy Kierkegaard over any Atheist and Theist alike when arguing.

I distinguish between things, personal preference and an argument. The former is not something that is up for argumentation, unlike the latter. Personal preference is usually non-arguable, that is I cannot argue why person X likes strawberry ice-cream instead of chocolate ice-cream. Voicing your preferences is always welcome, in fact quite interesting at times. However presenting an argument using a personal preference will most likely guarantee I dismiss it. Both are different things.

Generally I am not up for defending my values, unless in very specific circumstances where I feel like it. And if you feel like presenting a refutation, it is more than welcome. However remember that the Burden of Proof to refute lies on you, not me.