"Zen teaches nothing; it merely enables us to wake up and become aware. It does not teach, it points." ~D.T. Suzuki

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Genesis: Adam, Eve & The Tree of Innovation

or How A Local Family Business is Now Branching Out Into A Family Global Economy
The biggest problem in the world
 - we draw the circle of our family too small. 
We need to draw it larger every day.
 ~ Mother Teresa
In a previous post I wondered whether the Internet hadn't become the global campfire we now sit around.
An article on Steve Jobs, Zen and Innovation made me think further of how the economy may now become a human(e) global business. Sure more may be sometimes better, but in the spirit of Thoreau, I believe success in life depends and is based not only on the quantity of things but most importantly on its Quality.

This is a story of a Mom & Pop business that used disruptive innovation and sustaining to grow into a global economy. It was done the way business was done originally from the beginning. Based not only on "truth" and "knowledge" but wisdom.

Early groups encountered others, not in hostility but in openess and curiosity. Connecting, getting to learn about each other, finding new useful innovations and exchanging value for value in an atmosphere of trust. This innovation, communication, may very well have helped our survival during disruptive times and sustained our expansion and growth throughout the world. I believe it is this "Law of the Jungle" innovation that is more co-operative than aggressive, that grew a healthy commerce in the world. What innovation made them so successful? I would say, Excellence. The Sophists taught arête (Greek: ἀρετή, quality, excellence) as the highest value, and the determinant of one's actions in life. The Sophists taught artistic quality in oratory (motivation via speech) as a manner of demonstrating one's arête. Oratory was taught as an art form, used to please and to influence other people via excellent speech; nonetheless, the Sophists taught the pupil to seek arête in all endeavours, not solely in oratory. (Wikipedia) 

Can we keep this branch of the tree alive?
Can we keep up to the challenges of continuing this family business into the future?

It will take the courage of innovation and wise decisions, but our family has shown no lack of that.
No-Thing is Permanent
All There Is, Is Change
Rational mathematical models of the economy
are about people as predictable numbers

We live in times where we will have to adapt or die
in how we make our living as a species
but it's always been like that in this world

The economy is what it's always really been about,
relationships between people...
from the earliest days its about
connecting together and trust
Do you think complex social changes
come with disruptive innovations?
Yes. I think so.
And Evolutionary Economics is about
complex relationships. Hmm...
Shocking Facts You Didn't Know A Minute Ago

This clip is only a couple of years old
and it's already dated

The pace of science and technological change
used to double every few thousand years,
then hundred,
then five,
What time is it?

As shown in patents and academic publication, 
human knowledge doubles at different rates.
For example,
 ranging from 2 years for nanotechnology
 to 21 years for other sectors.

But the growth of 
Asian knowledge engines hasn't yet 
replaced the flattening of the growth curve
in the developed world.
So there is uneven growth
in sectors like nanotechnology,
growth is very rapid.
In other areas, 
such as Alzheimer's Disease,
it is not as rapid as one would think.
A warm shout-out of respect to all my relatives.

Hey, That's YOU!

Family Reunion
-We share close to 98% of the our DNA
with chimpanzees...
we are "apes" or they are "human" ?
-We are even more closely related to gorillas
-There is more variation between individuals in a population than there is between populations
-All current non-African humans
 have a small % of Neanderthal DNA in them
Charles Darwin's sketch from 1837

His first diagram of an evolutionary tree from his

Interpretation of the handwriting: 

"I think case must be that one generation should have as many living as now. To do this and to have as many species in same genus (as is) requires extinction . Thus between A + B the immense gap of relation. C + B the finest gradation. B+D rather greater distinction. Thus genera would be formed. Bearing relation to ancient types with several extinct forms".
The Population of Shanghai 
(You have relatives there)
In the future...
We will have to be innovative
 To feed, clothe, shelter and educate our family,
 The World, that's 7 Billion PEOPLE and counting.
Disruptive Innovation in the public sector
Zero-Point Mind

Good friends, our essence of mind (literally, self-nature) which is the seed or kernel of enlightenment (bodhi) is pure by nature, and by making use of this mind alone we can reach buddhahood directly. Now let me tell you something about my own life and how I came into possession of the esoteric teaching of the dhyana 
(or the Zen) school...

All the Buddhas
 of the past present and future, 
and all the Sutras 
belonging to the twelve divisions
 are in the self-nature of each individual, 
where they were from the first.

If one's self-nature is understood, 
one's satori is enough to make one rise
to a state of Buddhahood... 
A man knows by himself
 what his original mind is,
which is no more than emancipation.
When emancipation is obtained, 
it is the Prajna-samadhi, and 
when this Prajna-samadhi is understood, 
there is realized a state of mu-en,

Hon rai mu ishi motsu
From the first, no-thing is
The Sixth and Last Patriarch of
the Southern School of Zen Buddhism
Disruptive Zennovation
Hui-neng on the other hand
 is the champion of the Abrupt School.

That the process of enlightenment is abrupt means that there is a leap, logical and pyschological, in the Buddhist experience...

The teaching of abrupt satori is then fundamental in the Southern School of Hui-neng. And we must remember that abruptness or leaping is not only pyschological, but dialectical.

Prajna is really a dialectical term denoting that this special process of knowing, known as "abrupt seeing", or 'seeing at once", does not follow general laws of logic; for when Prajna functions one finds oneself all of a sudden, as if bt a miracle, facing Sunyata, the emptiness of all things. This does not take place as the result of reasoning, but when reasoning has been abandoned as futile, and pyschologiaclly when the will-power is brought to a finish.

The Use of Prajna contradicts everything that we may conceive of things wordly; it is altogether of another order than our usual life. But this does not mean that Pranja is something altogether disconnected with our life and thought, something that is to be given to us by a miracle from some unknown and unknowable source. if this were the case, Prajna would be of no possible use to us, and there would be no emancipation for us. It is true that the functioning of Prajna is discrete, and interrupting to the progress of logical reasoning, but all the time it underlies it, and without Prajna we cannot have any reasoning whatever. Prajna is at once above and in the process of reasoning. This is a contradiction, formally considered, but in truth this contradiction itself is made possible because of Prajna.

We Are Family
Hon rai mu ishi motsu
© 2012 "μ" -Peter Shimon

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