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Antagonistic Dualities: Polarization and Paradox

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Antagonistic Dualities: Polarization and Paradox
2.2 Polarity
2.3. Paradoxes and antinomies

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Part 2 of Development through Alternation. Augmented version of a paper originally prepared for Integrative Working Group B of the Goals, Processes and Indicators of Development (GPID) project of the Human and Social Development Programme of the United Nations University (UNU). This document was originally distributed as a separate monograph in 1983. The paper provides a structure linking reviews of alternation as it emerges in studies from a wide range of sources. The paper is in 9 separate parts [searchable PDF version]

0. Introduction / Abstract

1. Monopolarization
1.1. Questionable answers
1.2. Forms of truth
1.3. Accumulative answers
1.4. Developing a new "meta-answer"
1.5. Decodification of analyses of capital accumulation
1.6. "New International Conceptual Order"
1.7. Accumulation and development
1.8. Development of accumulation
1.9. Domains of significance

2. Antagonistic dualities: polarization and paradox
2.1. Oppositional logic
2.2. Polarity
2.3. Paradoxes and antinomies

3. A third perspective
3.1. Beyond method
3.2. Constraints on a meta-answer
3.3. Meta-answer patterning
3.4. Containing discontinuity through aesthetics
3.5. Observer entrapment and micro-macro complementarity
3.6. Order through fluctuation: dissipative structures
3.7. Opening and closing: alternation for discontinuous learning
3.8. Third-perspective "containers": patterns of alternation
3.9. Revolutionary cycles of alternation
3.10. Trialectics: a logic of the whole

4. Threshold of comprehenisibility: a fourfold minimal container?
4.1. Omnitriangulation: interlocking cycles
4.2. Number and time
4.3. Logos and lemma for interparadigmatic dialogue
4.4. Epistemological mindscapes
4.5. Complementary languages
4.6. Nonlinear cybernetics
4.7. Modes of managing

5. Further constraints on conceptual container design
5.1. Cyclic self-organization requirements
5.2. Encompassing system dynamics
5.3. Encompassing varieties of form

6. Comprehension and learning
6.1. Non-comprehension "holes"
6.2. Discontinuity: comprehension and internalization
6.3. Pattern accumulation in a learning society

7. Complexification of integration
7.1. General systems and holonomy
7.2. Cognitive systematization
7.3. Wholeness and the implicate order
7.4. Health and space-time
7.5. Dissonant harmony and holistic resonance

8. Development of comprehension and compehension of development
8.1. Interwoven alternatives: organizational tensegrity and resonance hybrids
8.2. Non-comprehension as a structuring characteristic of a learning society
8.3. Learning cycles
8.4. Patterns of alternation: a musical key from a political philosopher
8.5. Patterns of alternation: an agricultural key from crop rotation
8.6. The entropic crisis and the learning response
8.7. Alternation between energetic expansion and mentalistic reduction
8.8. Uncertainty: the source of meaning
8.9. Morphic resonance
8.10. Toward an enantiomorphic policy
8.11. Game comprehension and identity transformation
8.12. Ecodynamics and societal evolution
8.13. Language of probabilistic vision of the world

9. Implications
9.1. Implications for agreement and consensus
9.2. Implications for action formulation
9.3. Implications for values and norms
9.4. Implications for organizations
9.5. Implications for unemployment
9.6. Implications for the developmental responsibility of answer domains
9.7. Implications for forms of presentation
9.8. Implications for information processing
9.9. Implications for the human self-image

10. Conclusions

Notes
References


2.1. Oppositional logic

The philosopher Stephane Lupasco has explored the nature of antagonistic dualities (147). He shows that knowing is intimately associated with such duality and takes place by actualizing one of the terms of the duality and virtualizing the contradictory one. In this way only a monism is knowable, especially in science, even though it is the dualism which is the "motor" for this process. That by which we know illuminates a contradictory order whose contradictory nature is not apparent. In this way the proper object of scientific knowledge can only be extension - affirmation, permanence, conservation, and identity. The knowledge is brought about by the negation of intensity - which is forced out of the cognitive domain (147, p. 16). Furthermore:

"Devant un champ conscientiel et cognitif de plus en plus riche d'identites exteriorisees, tout ce qui releve de la negation sera rapporte au sujet connaissant, lequel se connait de moins en moins au fur et a mesure qu'il connait davantage, puisque precisement il n'apercoit plus que ce sur quoi il opere, que ce qu'il refoule, nie." (147, p. 15)

For Lupasco all human cognitive and practical efforts oscillate between extension and intensity:

"De par leur contradiction dynamique constitutive, il y aura toujours conflit et tentative...de suppression de ce conflit, et, done, choix de 1'un au detriment de 1'autre, alternativement" (1 47, p. 1 7, emphasis added).

For the human being, extension is that which one knows more than one feels, whereas intensity is that which one feels more than one knows (147, p. 22). The characteristics of each (147, p. 30) recall recent work on right and left hemispheres of the brain (discussed below).

For Lupasco any emergent third perspective can itself be resolved into mutually contradictory terms involving an oscillation between identity and non-identity. This "prison" is the essence of our knowledge (1 47, p. 61) although:

"L'esprit humain fuit ce qui lui est revele le plus infailliblement, 1'opposition pure, 1'oscillation continuelle des contraires" (147, p. 60).

Although his exploration is very valuable in understanding how energy is engendered by such dualities, it is less useful in understanding how such energy is to be contained in support of human and social development.


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