Fritjof Capra 

Whenever we look at life, we look at networks.

Fritjof Capra, The Systems View of Life: A Unifying Vision


Systems thinking is “contextual,” which is the opposite of analytical thinking. Analysis means taking something apart in order to understand it; systems thinking means putting it into the context of a larger whole.

The Systems View of Life: A Unifying Vision


As the twenty-first century unfolds, it is becoming more and more evident that the major problems of our time – energy, the environment, climate change, food security, financial security – cannot be understood in isolation. They are systemic problems, which means that they are all interconnected and interdependent. Ultimately, these problems must be seen as just different facets of one single crisis, which is largely a crisis of perception. It derives from the fact that most people in our modern society, and especially our large social institutions, subscribe to the concepts of an outdated worldview, a perception of reality inadequate for dealing with our overpopulated, globally interconnected world.

The Systems View of Life: A Unifying Vision


Genuine mental health would involve a balanced interplay of both modes of experience, a way of life in which one’s identification with the ego is playful and tentative rather than absolute and mandatory, while the concern with material possessions is pragmatic rather than obsessive.

 The Turning Point: Science, Society, and the Rising Culture


A person functioning exclusively in the Cartesian mode may be free from manifest symptoms but cannot be considered mentally healthy. Such individuals typically lead ego-centred, competitive, goal-oriented lives. Overpreoccupied with their past and their future, they tend to have a limited awareness of the present and thus a limited ability to derive satisfaction from ordinary activities in everyday life. They concentrate on manipulating the external world and measure their living standard by the quantity of material possessions, while they become ever more alienated from their inner world and unable to appreciate the process of life. For people whose existence is dominated by this mode of experience no level of wealth, power, or fame will bring genuine satisfaction.

The Tao of Physics


There are solutions to the major problems of our time; some of them even simple. But they require a radical shift in our perceptions, our thinking, our values. And, indeed, we are now at the beginning of such a fundamental change of worldview in science and society, a change of paradigms as radical as the Copernican revolution. Unfortunately, this realization has not yet dawned on most of our political leaders, who are unable to “connect the dots,” to use a popular phrase.

The Systems View of Life: A Unifying Vision


This exceptional ability to interconnect observations and ideas from different disciplines lies at the very heart of Leonardo’s approach to learning and research.

The Ecology of Law: Toward a Legal System in Tune with Nature and Community


This state of affairs is not inevitable. Humans were able to employ science and law to transform common holdings into a commodity and then into capital; we also have the ability to reverse this path, transforming some of our now overabundant capital into renewed commons.

The Ecology of Law: Toward a Legal System in Tune with Nature and Community


He had a deep respect for life, a special compassion for animals, and great awe and reverence for nature’s complexity and abundance. While a brilliant inventor and designer himself, he always thought that nature’s ingenuity was vastly superior to human design. He felt that we would be wise to respect nature and learn from her.

The Science of Leonardo: Inside the Mind of the Great Genius of the Renaissance


The double role of living systems as parts and wholes requires the interplay of two opposite tendencies: an integrative tendency to function as part of a larger whole, and a self-assertive, or self-organizing tendency to preserve individual autonomy .

The Systems View of Life: A Unifying Vision


 

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