Think like nature acts

The World is Fantastically Complicated
Natural and Human Systems Manifest as Inter-Active Networks
Constellating Their Interdependent Relationships Radically
Reconfigures Understanding of 'How Things Happen'

Trying to Tell How It Actually Happens
Seeking a 'Whole Story' from 'Real Life' to Literature,
Myth, Psychology, and Complexity Science - then back again.

Life always seemed more complex to me than anyone admitted—including myself. My experiences in the ‘real world’ of society, business, and agriculture confirmed this sense of relentless reduction and pervasive over-simplification. My desire to ‘tell it like it really is’ led to explorations of literature, creative writing, performance, and art, then studies of myth, depth psychology, and postmodern philosophy. From these investigations emerged an encounter with complexity science as the most holistic philosophy of ‘how things are the ways they are.’ Here I encountered a scientific logic that validates our experiences of fantastically convoluted and mysteriously emergent phenomena. This science does not ‘tell reality’ by predictably defining exactly what happens. Instead, it defines how things happen unpredictably—how reality’s order is actually disorderly.

The scientific fact that life is not, after all, a ‘tale that can be made straight,’ brings me great personal relief.  Suddenly my conflicts and confusions appear not merely as faults and fractures but as essential parts of the diversity that generates my mind’s “self-organization” as a “complex adaptive system.” This scientific affirmation of chaotic interactivity’s principle role in psyche and society brought me back to where I had started. It confirmed my sense of how art, literature, and myth are essential methods for ‘knowing realistically’: metaphorical representation ‘imagines’ the interactive realities of dynamic complexity as ‘nonlinear symbols.’ This conjunction between complexity science and imaginal art helped me correlate similar logics in other disciplines of knowledge, as well as among diverse cultural wisdom traditions. And that connection ‘made sense’ of my disparate interests and studies.

Each approach to elaborating interactivity I encountered showed me how my own reductive thinking and expectations were obscuring aspects of ‘the real.’ Then I noticed that these  different approaches to elaborating complexity all ‘think in clusters’ or seeming contradictions, rather than ‘along consistent sequences.’  From complexity science to poetry, fairy tales to Zen, their perspective is ‘constellative.’ It is this ‘every-which-way view’ that reveals the strange causal traits of interactive reality—the ones that mechanistic modeling ‘misses.’ This notion of ‘constellating variably interactive clusters’ provided me with the dynamical metaphor around which to formulate the principles and practices of Dynamic Constellation—as a therapeutic response to reduction’s inevitably delusional effects.

My early studies were in literature, theater, and creative writing. My PhD is in mythology and depth psychology. Correlating that background with concepts from complexity science I demonstrate how the latter has restored the psychological role of mythical thinking as an essential method for making nonlinear dynamics and emergent self-organization tangible. This conjunction of science and myth can approach our strange and confounding experiences (from dreams to marriage, popular culture, and climate change) as ‘encounters with reality’s extra-ordinary dynamics.’ Combining this association with similarly constellative perspectives from other disciplines of study, as well as insights from diverse cultural traditions, I assist you to ‘tell what happens’ in your self and the world more inclusively. This increases realistic understanding of your contexts and opens a deeper sense of their meaning—leading you to know more about what you already know. That does not necessarily make life easier. But it does tend to make it more interesting.

"I have been complelled to confront the disorderly conflict, contradiction, and turbulence of order."

We cannot ‘act’ realistically if we do not know ‘inter-actively’

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Think More Realistically—Constellate Your Consciousness

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© Leslie Emery 2010. All Rights Reserved

'There is no end to the telling
the Story of The World'

For further detail on constellation see the More Info Page
Psyche and world are mirrors of each other’s turbulent interactivity