KZ: Currently timespans ranging from a few months to a few years determine most formal planning and decision-making – by corporations, governments, non-governmental organizations and international bodies. Quarterly reporting by companies; electoral cycles of 18 months to seven years; planning horizons of one to five years: these are the usual temporal boundaries of our hot, crowded, and flattened little world. In the 1980s, this myopic vision found a name: short-termism. Short-termism has no defenders. Everyone seems to be against it, and yet proponents of alternatives are also in short supply. This is surprising. Everyone involved in any aspect of the humanities but particularly historians should have been opposed strongly to short-termism. The mission of the humanities is to transmit questions about value – and to question values – by testing traditions that build up over centuries and millennia. And within the humanities, it is the discipline of history that provides an antidote to short-termism, by giving pointers to the long future derived from knowledge of the deep past. Yet from the 1970s forward, most professional historians conducted most of their research on timescales of between five and 50 years. Large stories, told across long sweeps of time, became both unfashionable and unfeasible, at least for anyone claiming professional competence as a historian. Short-termism became accepted as usual and normal because the humanities, and particularly historians failed to do their job. Set loose short-termism in business and economics merely followed the path laid out for them by the failure of humanities and historians.
Me: Short-termism only is the antithesis of Wisdom. When you integrate the truths/insights/advantages/strategies to be derived from both the short term and the long term…you’ve plopped your mind down in the deeper insight of Wisdom and the cosmic code:
[ (short term x long term) –> Wisdom ]
KZ: That was not my intent, Craig. The long-term and short-term make human history. History is the sight of the creation of human cultures. These cultures are crippled without both parts of human history. Which, I guess translates to human history, complete being the source of the grace you mention.
Me: Ken, Pardon, my response was not intended to be contrary to what you said actually, only to re-affirm the integrative nature of wisdom and its process.
To me grace is really synonymous with consciousness full or otherwise. IMO the original paradigm change was the human species awakening to consciousness. And the final one will be their realization that on an elemental and yet imminently experiential level the basic nature of the cosmos is that very same “thing”.
KZ: Craig, I think it’s the way you use language to express these beliefs that throws me off. My perspective tends not to use such grandiose words as grace and cosmos. The non-specificity of such terms leads me to look at them as ways to impede clear understanding.
Me: Yes I understand that words/concepts like grace and cosmos are traditionally religious and/or holistic. But that’s why I keep capitalizing the adjectives NATURAL and PHILOSOPHICAL before the word grace. Minds run entirely too much in single and exclusionary modes. Concepts like grace and cosmos are polar opposites to the mindset of science which is unfortunately solely empirical, mentally fragmenting and objectifying and last but not least entirely too culturally habituated.
What?….am I against science? NO! I’m 100% for science itself….just not science as an orthodoxy, as an incomplete and hamstrung mental discipline….especially when Wisdom includes the scientific method.
The sages of the world’s major wisdom traditions were the scientists of their age, and their lore and mental techniques are proof of how disciplined and honest they were…and with a much trickier subject matter than the physical universe.
Viz economics (and I’m not trying to be exclusionary here and recognize that others here have criticized mere mathematical and axiomatic techniques) who is actually advocating a more empirical approach to investigating our economic problems those who are off in some mathematical/abstract quasi-fugue ….or me who wants economists and pundits to look at and analyze the exquisitely empirical tool of double entry bookkeeping so as to decipher its digital nature and what I refer to as its “Triple Power Point” of retail sale in order to see that a digital monetary policy at that point effects every signature of a paradigm change???
Integrate opposite perspectives/tools/mindsets/truths and you’ll be able to see and accomplish an actual thirdness greater oneness that transcends dualistic orthodoxies.