This lecture has been inspired by translating the material found in:
‘A Model for Forming Dynamic Judgements’ – Lex Bos Wialog Working Group for Dynamic Judgements
When human beings speak with one another, one can hear, that they constantly exchange opinions. They have a point of view about everything: whether something ‘works’ or not. Whether something is beautiful or ugly, whether something is ‘good’ or ‘not good’. They proceed to form a judgement about how to proceed solving problems arising out of varied situations.
The ‘reality’ in which we all live emerges from all of these judgements. And also the future world will be defined from these judgements.
Whoever is concerned about the world in which we live, must ask how these judgements, which have been pronounced, have come into being. How consciously and carefully have such judgements been formed? Could it somehow happen in a more careful and conscious way? In order to judge this, must we perhaps understand what a judgement actually is and how it has come into being?
2. The Path of Knowledge and the Path of Active Choice
When a judgement is spoken, it is a question of an inner activity. The speak out a judgement is not a natural happening that occurs outside of oneself, but rather an ability that is brought forth. Therefore it is possible to say that the ability to form a judgement is something that can be learned.
What does a judgement come out of? Out of what grounds does this inner ability arise? Judgements can have a connection to the past or to the future. When I feel the need to formulate what I think of a situation, or if I want to grasp it, then my judgement is connected to the past. My activity is then investigating the situation. I am then on the path of knowledge.
When I feel the need to speak about what must happen in order to
solve a problem, then my judgement concerns the future. My activity is then that of how to take action. I want to change the world. I give my attention then to the path of active choice.
My judgement can also be connected with the present. I then speak about what I experience here and now about a situation.
The path of knowledge and the path active choice – are interconnected; they are necessary for eachother. Conscious judgement making is a synthesis of both paths.
3. The Path of Knowledge: Perceiving andConceiving
What happens when a doctor makes an examination and concludes that the patient has asthma? What happens when a palaeontologist concludes that a certain bone structure is that of a dinosaur? Essentially it is that I express myself about a connection between a perception outside of myself and a conception within myself. Possibly I will conceive new conceptions.
I cannot see conceptions. I can only think them. If in the sense- world an object appears that belongs to a conception, a mental image is formed within myself, which is ‘chair’, ‘sofa’, or whatever it may be. There may exist an inconclusive picture of an illness with conflicting results of the examination. In any case there exists an interconnection between the perceptions and the conceptions arrived at. This phenomenon can be studied in a book by Rudolf Steiner called The Philosophy of Freedom.
A feeling connection can block the ability to arrive at a correct judgement. It can appear as a prejudice: ‘I found that funny, or threatening, etc.’ This may come from personal, subjective experiences.
This feeling–connection may also open up or deepen the knowledge-judgement when the feeling-connection can be objectified both in the sphere of perception and that of conception.
A wider category of conception can contain a more specific formulation: example – ‘The human being is a mammal.’
4. The Path of Active Choice – Goals, Ways and Means
With such and such ways and means, I can achieve this or that goal. The goals fit together with the ways and means; and the ways and means are adequate to meet the goals. The relationship between the two can be varied:
‘I am shooting at flies with cannons’ The ways and means don’t connect with the goals.
‘ I am trying to empty the sea with a spoon’ The goals which are striven for don’t stand a chance of being met, using the ways and means provided.
The ways and means are not worthy to solve or ‘heal’ the problems.
I set ‘goals on the throne’ which do not belong there, in order to
employ certain means ( electronic equipment) to attain them.
If I am seeking the ways and means to reach outer goals, I must look in the world around me to find the people, the laws, etc. to help me along the way to the goals.
When I feel enthusiasm for an ideal, for moral values it is an inner strength. which leads me to the fulfilment of the outer goals arising out of the ideals.
I can have the feeling that such and such a way or means will help attain the goal. This may be a subjective blockade- a kind of prejudgement. If it becomes verified and objectified, it can open up the judgement for choosing ways and means. An intuitive feeling about ways and means must be scrutinised.
5. Foreground and Background
A. The sense ‘I am’; human individuality is striven for in all the human beings involved in group resolution. It is the central requirement that allows a breathing, a possibility to strive for a space of unprejudiced free thinking, involving the potential elements surrounding the judgement.
Path of Knowledge
- Perception: facts, dates, information, experience, happenings, descriptions etc.
- Conceptions: Characteristics, thoughts, theories, hypotheses, concepts, thought models, lawfulness, ideas etc.
Path of Active Choice
D. The Setting of Goals: purposes, wishes, gestures, options,
values, ideals, motives, impulses etc.
E. Ways and Means: procedures, instruments, methods,’ how to’
Even the researcher, who appears to be concerned solely with the path of knowledge, formulates his goals of the research and his methods before he begins. He has certain means: time, money etc. During the time he prepares this research, the path of active choice stands in the foreground and his primary path of knowledge remains in the background.
On he researches; the facts and the thoughts are evoked, until doubt might arise about the correct method or necessary funds, a lack of motivation etc. Then the path of knowledge is again interrupted until these problems are resolved.
Take the example of the entrepreneur. He sets goals, and chooses means to pursue his intentions, and acts; then mental images about the market, politics, sudden decrease in sales etc. , come into play, and must be considered, although the main intention has to do with the path of active choice. Here, there is the same kind of interplay between the foreground and the background.
In the process of forming judgements, both paths and all of the fields are always present at the same time. The process becomes rhythmical and flexibility is required. It occurs in the process of time, as the minutes pass by, new facts and events are happening.
6. Is Judgement Forming: Experienced in Phases or as a Dialog?
Although there can be a consecutive growing experience, which can be logically seen as being built up in existing phases, there is always a dialog back and forth between the paths and a link of dialog between the parts of each path.
Between the path of knowledge and the path of active choice, one can experience three types of dialogs:
— A dialog exists, which is within the path of knowledge and its inner quality of picture-making out of the facts: it grows out of perception into conception, and is replenished and quickened by new facts and, sometimes new concepts.
–Between the picture of the problem, for example and finding the ways and means to the goal, a dialog builds up. Question and answer may be used appropriately. New diagnostic questions can be born.
–And, finally there ensues the link between the knowledge arrived at and the quantum jump to the plan of action or the altering of the whole plan because of a new fact occurring. The latter requires a courageous openness sometimes, to admit that the new knowledge may change the whole adaptation.
It seems to me that the Steiner’s path of the Six Basic Exercises might be transformed to proceed with a healthy problem solving technique.
1) Clear thinking – finding and differentiating the facts. (Control of Thought)
2) the will to change them into a new picture of the composite knowledge, – like a blueprint. This means letting go of one picture – point blank, if it is no longer appropriate It calls up the faculties gained in the Control of Will exercise, (where an action is done apparently arbitrarily to build up faculties)
3) the weighing of intuitive feelings and finding their validity or lack of validity, overcoming prejudice ( Faculties from Control of Feeling- Sympathy/Antipathy.)
4) the positive application of ways and means to the goal. (Positivity of Attitude)
5) the willingness to be open, to alter what needs to be altered to remain true to the whole undertaking. To admit that years of work may have taken the wrong turn because of one mistaken fact. Or to realise that the picture created was missing one element to fulfil its purpose. Open to totally unexpected turns. (Openness as a faculty)
6) Then to continue applying all the exercises, as needed, creating a healthy approach to the forming of judgements to help solve even the most consternating problems.
Fruits of the Scientific Method help the spirit to ascend again consciously out of the depths of our earthly dilemmas, and thus to bring the physical back into connection with the spiritual world.
I believe that Dynamic Judgement – Forming in Groups is a new social-scientific art. As an art, it stands principally in the sphere of Spirit Life, closely surrounded by its implications for the Rights sphere and the Economic sphere.
A look at the 4th Seal meditation from the Munich Conference brings us close to the universal wellsprings of wisdom out of which this judgement-forming may be seen to emerge.
In pure thought do you find the self that holds you strong.
Change your thoughts into pictures; so, you experience creative wisdom.
Transform your feelings into light; so, you manifest the forming forces.
Forge your will into being; so, you are creating a world being.
There is an intrinsic breathing process involved in the interrelationships of this meditation. (See the representation.)
The Central Position of the Question
Lex Bos delineates the application of motive, process and result. Behind the knowledge question there stands the feeling of wonder, Behind the question of active choice, there stands responsibility. These virtues lie in seeking the motive.
In the process one feels qualities,( as in the colour world qualities appears between light and darkness.) Giving name to these qualities involving judgement forming is a consciousness- soul process.
Does it feel chaotic?
Is there stagnation?
Is there healing where the difficulties become resolved. Our feelings become conscious.
In the result, there is an overview needed One might hear,
‘I have the feeling that a certain number of facts are not yet clear;
I have the feeling that we will not reach our goals with such and such ways and means.
Have you the feeling that the ways of handling this situation, which we pictured in the path of knowledge have been sufficiently considered?
7. Judgement–Forming and the Building Blocks in Group Work
- Objective interest and readiness for mutual acceptance and feelings of responsibility.
- Are the feelings involving sympathy and antipathy being purified?
- Subjective judgements – become examined and possibly used for deepening the process.
- Constantly building an overview to prevent one field of activity from taking over or falling out of the breathing dynamic.
At the end of the lecture, the picture of a seed is given by Lex Bos. The seed is laid in the grounds of the group. The question lives as a potential resulting answer. Facts and the fantasy involved in finding the ways and means become sufficiently interrelated. Clear thoughts are studied and enthusiastic goals are maintained. The potential answer that slumbers in the seed question can flourish and finally become harvested.
Katherine Rudolph ( Melbourne 2013)
From : ‘Heal Yourself – Spiritual Science and Plants’
Condensed thought of the twenty selected anthroposophic scientists about plant-life
The plant is a threefold organism developing from a creative central point of growth toward two opposite extremes: the form-giving, framework-building root pole, and the fruit–and-blossom metabolic pole.
Tracing these same elements in human beings, we come upon a similar threefold structure. In Man, the form pole is the head. No other part of the body can equal it in hardness and individuality of form. It is the source of all the formative tendencies that shape the organism, with the brain and nerve-strands radiating from it playing a very important role.
( The roots of the plant are comparable to the Rights pole in the Threefold Social Order.)
The metabolic life – unlike in the plant – is the lower one, in the human being, and it is literally what the word means, transformer of substances. Where the plant transforms substances in the blossom area as a result of macrocosmic influences, the microcosmic human metabolism takes up and works upon a nutritive stream, transforming it into blood. In both cases, warmth is the agent of this transformation.
( The blossoms are comparable to the Economic Pole in the Threefold Social Order)
The middle-zone in man, where breathing and blood-circulation are situated, corresponds to the leafy area in plants, the difference being that the human rhythmic functions have a far more comprehensive job to do than the foliage. Their main responsibility is that of harmonizing the two poles of form (head) and substance (the metabolism).
(The leaves are comparable to the Spirit Life in the Threefold Social Order)
Roots Nerve-sense system Brain
Foliage Rhythmic system Lungs
Blossom Metabolism and excretion Kidneys
Fruit Circulatory system Blood
Seed Organ formation Heart