[-empyre-] [Fwd: Re: mindful inquiry]

magnus at ditch.org.uk magnus at ditch.org.uk
Mon Aug 1 01:43:46 EST 2011

Michel, Many thanks for these further thoughts:

---------------------------- Original Message ----------------------------
Subject: Re: mindful inquiry
From:    "Michel Bauwens" <michel at p2pfoundation.net>
Date:    Sun, July 31, 2011 4:28 pm
To:      magnus at ditch.org.uk
Cc:      s.biggs at eca.ac.uk

On Sun, Jul 31, 2011 at 8:32 PM, <magnus at ditch.org.uk> wrote:

> http://books.google.com/books/about/Mindful_inquiry_in_social_research.html?id=AF6WWgtNshoC
> http://adhi301126117.wordpress.com/2010/06/28/mindful-inquiry-and-action-research/
> With these I am just wondering in (a very unresolved way) about the
> ideosphere and the "bridging" you mention...

Magnus asked me what I thought of 'mindful inquiry' ... I was not familiar
with this particular tradition, but I'm quite fond of the model of
cooperative inquiry by John Heron, really one of my intellectual heroes,

(more at http://p2pfoundation.net/P2P_Public_Intellectuals,
http://p2pfoundation.net/Commons-Oriented_Economists, and

who gives an explicitely p2p formulation of research: (more at

"A radical peer-to-peer research method, also called collaborative inquiry,
originated by John Heron between 1968 and 1981, and now regarded as one of
the most well-developed of the family of action research approaches. It has
been applied in a wide range of contexts: in medical practice, nursing,
midwifery, social work, management, organizational development, community
development, adult and continuing education, living together, human
spirituality, co-counselling, obesity, diabetes, racism, gender, women in
mid-life, social justice leadership, and more.

In traditional research on people, the roles of researcher and subject are
mutually exclusive. The researcher only contributes the thinking that goes
into the project, and the subjects only contribute the action to be studied.
In co-operative inquiry these exclusive roles are replaced by a co-operative
relationship of bilateral initiative and control, so that all those involved
work together as co-researchers and as co-subjects. They both design, manage
and draw conclusions from the inquiry, and undergo the experience and action
that is being explored. This is not research on people, but research with

My hunch is that a distinct p2p approach would combine a strong dose of
object-orientation (http://p2pfoundation.net/Social_Object, i.e. the object,
not the discipline determines the research approach), which automatically
means transdisciplinarity, http://p2pfoundation.net/Transdisciplinarity,
coupled with both individual and collective self-reflexivity).

Here is a nice rundown of the 'evolution' towards transdisciplinarity:

Of course, I didn't spend nearly enough time in academia to make any strong
claims in this field, but this is how I pretty intuitively wrote a small
introduction to an association of p2p researchers we would like to create:

"The idea is to create a research group centering around understanding the
'object' of emerging peer to peer dynamics, and more particularly the
emerging forms of peer production, governance and property, and the
associated paradigms of openness, participation, and commons-orientation.

The idea is to combine academic standards and the best of the academic
tradition, but to combine it with a few augmentations:

   - opening up to the participation of non-academics as long as academic
   standards can be observed
   - opening up to more participatory or inclusive forms of peer review
   - commitment to publishing in open access formats wherever possible
   - commitment to human emancipation, i.e. the research is combined with a
   positive charge of achieving a more just society, broadly defined as a
   society that allows more free interactions between its members
   - to be independent but also aligned with the p2p knowledge commons of
   the P2P Foundation
   - to be a group which aims for the mutual support of p2p researchers,
   including aiming at the 'sustainability' of such research
   - to promote the diffusion of knowledge of p2p dynamics, particularly the
   research from its own members"

I'm very strong on the intuitive idea that we all shine a partial light on
any object, and that we need each other to approach the truth.

I do not discount materialist objectivity at all, but don't see how it can
be divorced from epistemological self-reflexivity in order to understand
what it is we are willing to see, or not.

Ken Wilber once made a difference between the eye of the flesh (mind seeing
matter, needing objectivity), the eye of the mind (mind's seeing each other,
needing some form of hermeneutics) and the eye of the spirit (the no-mind
seeing the mind, as it 'witnessing meditation' etc.., needs intersubjective
validation of the experience with the numinous). I think a combination of
the three is necessary, though I doubt anyone is ready for the third step
(and most people adept at the latter, are  steeped in magical-mythical
traditions, so they need each other). The third is necessary to achieve a
'moment' that is beyond language and concepts, but of course, we must
always  return to the eye of the mind to communicate about it.

Most integral traditions acknowledge the above three spheres, just one
example from one of the founders of transdisciplinarity, Basarab Nicolsescu:

"Nicolescu distinguishes:

Objective nature: the natural characteristics of the Transdisciplinary
Object, approachable through 'subjective objectivity'

Subjective nature: the natural characteristics of the Transdisciplinary
Subject, approachable through 'objective subjectivity'

Trans-Nature: similarity and communion between the Transdisciplinary Objects
and Subjects"

This essay by Zachary Stein has great graphics showing the evolution of
post-disciplinary forms of research,

Hope that makes at least 'some' sense,


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