Seeds of Change - Heiner Benking's Blog - quergeist.info
Welcome to the NewsLog or Blog of Heiner Benking. This is a kaleidoscope of insights and impulses collected first in the Seeds of Change Viewsletter in 1995 and continually updated ever since, but now made available for broader distribution and comments - enjoy, and come again !
On International Human Rights Day, 562 authors, including 5 Nobel Prize laureates, from over 80 countries have joined together to launch an appeal in defense of civil liberties against surveillance by corporations and governments. 5 Nobel Prize Winners have signed: Orhan Pamuk, J.M. Coetzee, Elfriede Jelinek, Günter Grass and Tomas Tranströmer. Also among the signatories are Umberto Eco, Margaret Atwood, Don DeLillo, Daniel Kehlmann, Nawal El Saadawi, Arundhati Roy, Henning Mankell, Richard Ford, Javier Marias, Björk, David Grossman, Arnon Grünberg, Angeles Mastretta, Juan Goytisolo, Nuruddin Farah, João Ribeiro, Victor Erofeyev, Liao Yiwu and David Malouf.
The issue is important and very deer to me. We struggeled with a HUMANE INFORMATION SOCIETY in the early 90ies, The World Summit on Information Sciences (UN_WSIS), and many efforts, but nobody had in mind such a stroke on Sept 11. Jerome Glenn form the Millennium Project presented after the SIS Kouvola 2001 in the Finish Foreign Office on Sept 14th that there is no way to fight terrorism, (add slides and details a.s.a.p.)***** I would add now "especially not by "inteligence agencies" investing in dumb data collections". See article just printed on Collecting and Connecting...
Why I am rushing this? I promised some of the initiators and well known writers and Publisists, the PEN CLUB, and many others are involved, an interanet page on "Watching" called: The Spectrum of Meaning as publihed in HUMANKYBERNETIK - grkg in 1985 explaining the meaning of the citation “Big Brother is watching you” depending on the context and agency. Who is watching, with which detail and on what scale, for which purpose, with which proportions and consequences.
I immeditely think about: SAYING NO ! CULTURE OF REFUSAL - KULTUR DER VERWEIGERUNG - DAS KONSTRUKTIVE NEIN. 14 years ago published by Boelau Verlag, Vienna-Weimar. Check the "deadly sins" TODSUENDEN and more: [link]
We see a lot of ignorance and negligence in the public, media, and politics. What we are experiencing is a serious attack on human rights, democracies and constitutions, the way we write and share, hide and ignore. I opt here in teh sense of Herbert Stachowiak to sonsider a spectrum ofg meaning, but also a spectrum of impact along and across scales. I hope it helps if we make such surveillance and data-grabing more concrete by adding the situtation, context, scale, ... in oder to make visible and real what is happening on which scales and which dangers are involved.
7 Dec 2013 @ 20:06
Today all media are full of Nelson Mandela - I feel sadened, haunted, priviledged, at awe ! and very concerned!
We prepared „AFRICA BEYOND POVERTY“ between 1993 and 1995 [link] and Proceedings [link] so I am „all ears“ with all the „view“ and "words" comming in. Where is the difference, where have we been 20 years ago, and where are we today? regarding Africa and the World ?
I feel „we“ fail today and failed bitterly 20 years ago. Have our contributions, even well meaning and with full energies, have provided only little, or even worse, no lasting, even negative results!? Can we „bend the trend?
The ideas and insights were there, but to which ends ! ??, did we communicate well? Is this all our fault !? Or when stepping back, directly after the Wall had come down and the Politics Bureau of China initiated a meeting of UN State-Planners in Beijing in 1992 *** we had all the chances and failed miserably... People later advised the the Chinese gonvernment, but did they learn and appreciate from broader governance schemes ? And other approaches: Yehezkel Dror – ****** Ralph Siu *** ****
I feel today this looks like a global and total failure. Why I we did not speak up and words and documents where not read/received. All my / our failure? (further down I come back to my more reflecting, pondering, desperate mode at the moment)
How do I come to such strong sentiments and questionings?
I presently hear in our German National TV Nelson Mandela being quoted: Your playing small does not serve the world. - DICH SELBST KLEIN ZU HALTEN, DIENT NICHT DER WELT. taken from 'A Return To Love' (1992) by Marianne Williamson [link] This are NOT ! his original words but telling a lot and making me think..
The issue is close to what I am fumbling here tonight and for years.
1. “There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living…”
This is close, but not quite what is presented in the media and cited everywhere.
It leaves me with the question "When should we think and play big? and how can we serve best: Playing small does not serve the „World
Immediately, Mahelia Jackson is humming in my mind: If you go it, flaunt it but who is to speak up and when and on what subject? and who will listen when every word raised is under suspicion of self-service and fundamentalism, as wise people are silent !
Citation "Be Silent" and "Shut Up" as I learend from Anthony JUDGE. Please read his piece: The Deafening Silence of Those Who Know Nothing[link] which ends and starts with:
In one form or another, the most enlightened traditions enjoin people: To Dare, To Know, and To Be Silent We had much exchange about this being enlightened or not ! by "being Silent" and I qoted for him WISSEN _ WOLLEN _ WAGEN - (The full text below). So is it right to be silent ? or to speak up at the right time, on the right subject, to the right audience in the right situation, terse and inviting/empowering. Issues that matter to make a difference! You see me getting toughed, as this is my conern since long, as covered in [link] with our Magic Roundtables, and on the [link] website, which is focussing more on deliberation, dialog-design, and peace-making, as the next step, after lesrningbto listen, subsume, resonnate, and speak up!!
Bertrand Russell wrote, "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts." "Why should the wise people of the world doubt themselves and the fools revel in their own idiocy?" I recommend: [link]
Nelson Mandela and Bertrand Russel where deep into peace-making and so it makes much sense to dig here a little deeper, and the roots cause of the SDP Peace Processes comes up: "identifying "Religious fundamentalism" as the Root-Cause of the Problematique.": check slide 34-35 in this presentation [link] For more about Structured Dialogig Design (SDP) and Multi-Track Diplomacy and Peacemaking here: [link]
People like Bishop Desmond Tutu or Charles François with their deepness, attentiveness, and as a world of insights and friendliness have left a strong mark and provided raw-models - so attitude, ability and availability are top to judge a person or mission/scope. I often cite Charles François with his "Doing what matters most towards mount awareness. Check: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Fran%C3%A7ois_(systems_scientist) and this presentation he gave: [link] As you see I still advocate appropriate not oversimplsitic and undercomplex approaches, ways which go beyond linear, in the box, and only with one way to present and display conplex issues. See his Encyclopedia, and maybe the terms he like to include which say a little more about what I mean: [link]
Work in Progress - check - Wissen_Wollen_Wagen and Bishop Tutu, Africa and Asia, ... More >
29 Nov 2013 @ 19:42
Climate Change / Sustainability and Cognitive Overload, SCIENCE RESPONSIBILITY and the SUSTAINABILTY JAM
I could not mingle this year at the COP 19 even when so easy to reach from Berlin, and besides I have never ever made it to Warsaw. I did not attend not because the outcomes were obvious and only few had illusions about the capacity to come to grips with the Climate Challenges. I had my learnings at the , Climate Summit in Berlin 1995 and in my eyes even the COPENVEGAN - Copenhagen Climate Summit activities we did were helpful and brought lasting results not only in the SURVIVAL ACADEMY !
How can we come to grips with the Problematique? I always cite Yehudi Menuhin at this point, as he presented us the Seven Deadly Sins in his forword of the book: Culture of Refusal, Saying No ! It was published in 1999 as KULTUR DER VERWEIGERUNG, Das konstruktive Nein ! - but the translation is still „in progress“... This only to assure you that we do not believe that there is PANACEA, a quick-fix, a unique, universal methods, which helps us to solve the dilemata. (some people react like this when I highlight, introduce the SDP – see interview I did for Europe'sWorlds: 40 years Problematique or a recent contribution like: „Collecting, Connecting,... (PDF) S or check the 21stCentury Agora website:
I believe instead in view of the nightmare of predictable results in Warsaw, it is time to halt, „subsume and resonnate“ as I learned from Ralph G.H. Siu see the PANETICS Speakers Corner!
Some traditions teach that to be able to solve a problem requires to take a certain, typical the personal viewpoint out. So what is the viewpoint of all this Climate Negotiators? Can they consider co-existent positions and perspectives? We tried to outline what I mean here: various models: [link] and WeTurn: [link] and different perspectives or "Eyes": Landscape of Eyes and House of Eyes
Maybe these people consider climate as the Center of the Universe. Climate Change is very central and critical, but maybe we need to see it in perspective and context to be really able to address it. We can not predict weather nor climate, a look into historic records shows us that climate was unstable even when no Humans were around ! And that might the only thing we can say: Tipping Point with feed-back loops in highly complex, dynamic, even dissipative environments can go off like a loose canon. It might get very very cold, when all predictions tell us it will be getting hot and hotter. It all depends where you are, if you think episodic or epochal, wether you consider Ethics and Responsibiltiy with Space and Time Horizon, check Hans Jonas - Principle Responsibility - with Space and Time Horizon !! and Alfred Wegener Foundation at geotechnica 1991 and his hall-mark contribution: Charles Francois and his Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics and the PDF: article (PDF)
SORRY - my mother is in hospital - undergoing another operation - so no updates for some time... More >
22 Nov 2013 @ 15:05
Again a great event - I had to attend ! - as we were preparing for months a 3-day course of "LIVING DEMOCRACY" to take place next week, Nov 25-27 in Berlin. But unfortunately it got postponed last week !!! ... No comment on my part at this point !! I will make some hints further down... so please check out: Chances and Risks of Social Participation and HIIG and see the outline and programme:(PDF)
Maybe check my profile with Future Worlds, and there the links about dialogue and deliberation, contributions about Dialogue and Conversations, how we discussed Living versus Liquid Democracy years ago, or how we presented at the Brandenburg Gate in teh Speakers Corner (YouTube Video), or the broader topic of MULTI-TRACK DIPLOMACY and PEACE MAKING Come back for the prepared but unfortunately cancelled (Nov. 2013) 3-days event"LIVING DEMOCRACY"(programme PDF) oder Portal IdeenGeschichte (PDF) and [More].... (below) More >
?.... you can discover more about the German-British citizen and European, Lord Dahrendorf, his life between politics and academia, as well as the intellectual inheritance of his research. Get to know the concepts behind the Symposium which serve as its intellectual starting point...
Lord Dahrendorf’s Legacy Dahrendorf forcefully and repeatedly warned against taking seemingly comfortable policy frames and political positions for granted. He urged academics to question the status quo, and to challenge the political Zeitgeist. ... .
So let us this as raw-model and icon can be brought life to tackle the challenges "debated".
WORK IN PROGRESS PLEASE COME BACK - CHECK THE LINKS AND LIFESTREAM mentioned below:
I AM THRILLED, a high calibre gathering, check the stream and programme. Start here: [link]-@Dahrendorf_Sym - #DSym2013
I am making notes, but its so deep and challenges, that I want to think twice, mingle, and only present synthesis and ways and means towards shared positive action, capacity building, reaching mount awareness by doing what matters most and makes positive differences.
Notes and "FOOD FOR THOUGHT & ACTION": (a report and summary will come soon)
I was alerted in late August by Marcus Hedahls, London School of Economics (LSE) article: [link] and had provided Craig CALHOUN with our recent GLOBAL AGORAs publication: [I hope Craig has found the time to put some of the materials, I asked him to share, on the desk of researchers in his new function in the reknown LSE.
Check this and the new publications: [link] Strategic Articulation of Actions to Cope with the Huge Challenges or Our World - A Platform for Reflection. as published in this series as Volume One. A SOCIAL SYSTEMS APPROACH FOR GLOBAL PROBLEMS, 21st Century Agoras Monograph Series. I have written a little comment:
A Mission Impossible or The Needed Critical Piece of the Puzzle? Maybe you like it and I should share the list of content before you order!?
I hope you also like our connecting dots and spaces with Christakis, Laouris, Treviño, Kakoulaki and fearturing also work of Wasilewski, Jones and many other SDP practitionieers I came across over the years, trying to get some overview and insights into the "Problematique" and looking back onto Otlet, Judge and how work on a solution space is as old as the UIA ! Due in June - maybe ask for a preliminary pdf or LoC! Pls. see also the SAPREJ-12 bar below and maybe ask also for the slides of our presentation with Reynaldo and Bethania.
The conference proceedings with the new title: Collecting, Framing, Negotiating, and Connecting in Times of a GLocal “Problematique” - A HOLISTIC APPROACH TO COPE WITH GLOBAL CHALLENGES will be published by Cambridge Scholar Publishing 2013.
so I feel this is a very hot issue, talking with leading policy and industry people about central societal and futuristic matters,functions, features, benefits, impacts and proportions and consequences GLocally. *******
Very busy as always in November, so please check the links, check the videos, and maybe come back.
The whole theme is like a deja vue for me. Meta-Data and Information, Applications, Noise and Volumes were on my desk for 30+years, so was the need to visualize and participate, deliberate, negotiate, decide, ....
I feel that the paper adressing massive problems and dialog and decision making issues, a paper we did with Reynaldo and Bethania has been just hitting the streets, so check it out: [link]
Cambridge Scholar Publishing, available at the OAC. Check: ISBN: 978-960 86383-8-9
Collecting, Framing, Negotiating, and Connecting in Times of a GLocal (1) “Problematique” (2).
A HOLISTIC APPROACH TO COPE WITH GLOBAL CHALLENGES (3)
Heiner Benking, Reynaldo Treviño Cisneros, Bethania Arango Hisijara More >
8 Nov 2013 @ 16:36
Thrilling - awesome, I am with the coders/decoders/ "non-coder" world-makers of cultural expressions looking for fair and bottom-up and top-down harmonious approaches within 3 days. I REALLY REALLY LIKE IT. Great People. Please go to: How can Pirates & Capitalists, Hackers & Journalists, Amateurs & Pros work together? '''COMPLICITY | Berliner Gazette Conference 2013''' | #bgcon13 November 7th-9th at SUPERMARKT | [link]
Join in at the public event tomorrow and follow the [link] and see the public streaming tomorrow around and after "high noon" on Saturday.
As promised to some participants some notes and links below at More >
5 Nov 2013 @ 09:32
I was extremely busy, a lot of milestones and treshholds have been crossed and lots of activities should be reported here below.
Presently we are gearing for the Warsaw Climate Change Conference - November 2013
[link] but as a collegue is doing the "recording" I might even be not there this time...
I will briefly record later main activities and outcomes:
* Entrepreneuship Summit: Magic Roundtable
* Innovators Club Rundgespraech
* Global Soil Summit
* Anna Lindh Salon
4 Jul 2013 @ 10:05
you can learn more about EarthShips around the d.people d.collective https://www.facebook.com/d.collective.space/ which celebrate their first year in New Collogne. I recommend this very special group of d_school alumni and other young "live designers and livers"
pls also check: prinzessinnengarten.net
[link] and the neighboring Betahouse and Modulo also in the place of the Design Academy at Moritzplatz. This is one of the places where Berlin thrives.
This is my News Log, a public diary presenting events, symposia and happenings in Berlin and elsewhere, my farings, focus, and concerns.
The Log links in to my work and interests and presents issues and special concern of maybe a very small group of "concerned, engaged generalist" - a Global Interest Group (GIG). This needs to be seen in contrast to the ubiquitous Specialized Interest Groups (SIGs), the "scientific" approach to organize subject areas and specialisation and standardisation of means, nomenclatures, and modes of thinking. One of my favourite stories is "Longing for Unified Knowledge" where such a "specialist" runs into the founding session of the early general systems associations, mumbling "this is not my field" (as reported by Ivan M. Havel in our ISSS Wholeness Seminar).
As a starter I also recommend to check my MINDPRINT site, where we add the need for HANDPRINTS and MINDPRINTS, as FOOTPRINTS are good to visualize and communicate numbers, densities or consumption per area, but not sufficient across domains and communicate gains in different cultures, technologies, times,... in short: incompatible but relevant information and our work on dialog, peace, policy-making, and multi-modal, facetted issues and consequences.