Introduction to the ‘Complex Self’
The ‘Complex Self' represents a fully contextualized understanding of ‘self-identity’, based on ‘inclusional logic’ (as distinct from conventional rationalistic ‘impositional’ or ‘box’ logic), which reciprocally couples distinct but not discrete inner (local) and outer (non-local) spatial aspects through an INTERMEDIARY domain or ‘dynamic self boundary’. Our cultural denial of this ‘triple-aspect Self’ through our conventional rationalistic focus on ‘discrete individuals’ as ‘contents abstracted from context’, is, I suspect, the source of profoundly damaging and abusive internal and external conflicts, including those that induce human beings to indulge in going to war and to punish others who do not share their beliefs and values. In sensitive people, these conflicts manifest in various kinds of ‘escape mechanisms’, including addictions and psychoses, and are at the root of the epidemic of ‘stress in the workplace’.
Our current environmental and social crises and associated need to develop ‘sustainable ways of living together’ cannot be resolved governmentally without a radical shift from the logical premise of discreteness and consequent independence of material contents (‘objects’ or ‘things’) from their spatial context that has led to these crises. Inclusional logic provides a basis for this necessary shift in understanding, whilst being fully grounded in current knowledge. Here, rather than being an external ‘absence of presence’ that can safely be disregarded, space is regarded as a vital, inductive ‘presence of absence’ or ‘dynamic attractor’, and boundaries are regarded as pivotal intermediary domains through which inner and outer spatial domains of different intensity (curvature) are both distinguished and coupled together. Correspondingly, we perceive the world and Universe about us in terms of dynamic, space-incorporating, uniquely situated, relational places, nested over all scales from microcosmic to macrocosmic, rather than disjunctive objects that can only be moved by external force.
The implications of this shift are profound for all fields of human understanding concerned with evolutionary (irreversible) processes, and the need to explore these implications more fully, alongside practical efforts to transform the way we relate with one another and our living space, is urgent. Through this shift, it is possible to reverse the culturally damaging priority that has emerged from conventional impositional logic of profits before people before living space. We can recognize that our local human identities are expressions of energy-space; like all other natural forms, from quarks to galaxies, we are relational products and participants, not primary producers or ingredients of our dynamic context. Two guiding principles emerge from this recognition:
(1) Love and Respect Other as the Distinct, but not Discrete, Outer Aspect of Your Complex Self
(2) Give Primacy to Your Living Space, which permeates Everywhere, within, through and around Every uniquely situated Place.
Do these seem familiar?