Towards A Science Of Life As Creative Organisms ~ Norm Hirst June 1, 2008
Read Norm Hirsts paper published in Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy  Click Here

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New mind for New Government By and For the People

New mind for New Government By and For the People

What is happening and how?

Winning, at all costs, to what end?  What mediates such excess, and drive?  The answer is lots of people who care about something other than JUST winning.  When there are people with lots of money who want more of lots of money, when the ends justify the means, we get a fools game like we’ve witnessed in the US Congress.  We can point to that set of events and say how is this happening? 

A world breaking down

Constellations of events have converged to create a world that doesn’t work, a world that breaks down trust, hope, morale and ethics agreements of centuries in the making. For example; rule of law, checks and balances between branches of government, rules against nepotism, no conflict of interest in leadership roles, regulation where the masses are protected against the control of the few (monopolies) control of public air ways (FCC), and communication rights (TV, Radio, Cable and now Internet), Protection of Environment for all (EPA) to name but a few.

Totalitarianism in the making

When there is no one to do the protecting, when the police and military become those in charge with no counter balance of justice or consequence, when leadership is singularly driven by acts of self-aggrandizement, using money, legal minds who can work around the laws, and psychological trickery to manipulate people vulnerable to advertizing, persuasion by distractions, anxieties and fears, then you have what we have today, a totalitarianism in the making.  The people who are participating unwittingly in this making are like fools in play land; US Congressional players with their hands in the pot grabbing what greed wants as the system falls apart.

Becoming a counter balance

Maybe a new idea is to wake up, to re-member – by being an active counter balance, an antidote, to provide energy for new direction, actually, with renewed capacity, to be a government by the people, and for the people.  Can there exist a government such as this?  Even if the American ideal was just that, an experiment in the making, can what was put in place by founding fathers be re-invented with new minds that have deeper understanding of how life works, how consciousness creates structures from spirit of intention, from highest values of inclusion, valuing life-itself as highest value, (inalienable rights)?  To make choices that are life-giving, that grow, not kill, that support, not constrain, that free, not entrap, that create hope, trust, and working together towards what works for the whole good of life-itself in which we all share. 

Growing a New Mind

How this can occur, many here know already, is best exemplified by Open Space Technology.

Harrison Owen put a name to this living process he describes as Open Space Technology. Over twenty years ago, he began to talk of this universal process that goes on in nature, plays out over and over again when certain conditions arrise. People closest to the work to be done, people most impacted by what needs to change, come together, sit in a circle, listen to their own passions and knowing and find ways to act with new awareness. Through listening, being responsible for what needs to happen, plans for actions emerge. Often action begins immediately in times of crisis. Leaders emerge around projects and work to be done. Hearts and minds are changed with new ways of knowing the situation at hand reveal.  Movement towards harmonization happens with no controllers, no force required.

This is a dynamic inherent in life where people are driven by intentions for life, liberty, and freedom to pursue one’s happiness, to follow one’s “self-law” (acts of autonomy,) while doing so in collaboration with others doing the same, like cells in our bodies.   

I like how In Open Space Technology we can re-member and experience the process of growing this new mind for government for the people, and by the people every time we participate in it. 

There are a few things to point out here that seem to occur naturally, obvious, as they may be to many reading this.

1) There is passion around an issue that draws people together in physical or digital space and time. 

2) An urgency to action exists.

3) An invitation is extended to all those stakeholders who have a stake in that passion and that urgency.  

4) People sit in a circle, metaphorically or in real space-time reality, take time to pause, reflect on reason for coming together, what brought each to this moment and time. 

5) The circle is open for people to begin their quest to find questions, answers, and debate, resolve, and emerge with insights, actions for dealing with the situation at hand. 

Self-knowing actions

With minimum structure, no controls other than “self-knowing, self-law actions” work gets done, plans made, spirits lifted, collaborations generated, teams organized, leaders show up, a swell of possibility or confrontation with “oh shit we don’t have a clue, but we will have a clue” together this day, this time, this now as we truly “get” what power lives in this process.

Reminding people of their own power

Folks are invited to use their own discernment of where and when to engage, to take responsibility for getting what they need, and contributing, as they feel drawn to do.  This is fondly called using Law of two feet.  If you are not feeling engaged, neither contributing, nor learning, then take yourself to where you are.   

Whoever comes are the people meant to be in that circle because they are the ones whose passion caused them to act, to show up.  The rest takes care of itself, by folks following their own self-law to make it happen.

We have all what is needed to act – now

Our natural human capacities have only marginally been accessed, I believe.  We need to work with deeper understanding of this capacity that each living human being possesses right now.  We don’t need to take a course, study how to do it, or have some “smart” person tell us how it works.  All human beings are already equipped with everything needed to act with collective intelligence.  It’s just that we need to be reminded, and called into circle to live the experience of it, some for the first time, some re-newing their knowledge.

How many circles can we open in the next few weeks?  I’ve been sensing that the Open Space community has been readying for this moment.  Our role as a community, with the collective experience and courage of this community is to lead, encourage, free and provide the ground swell to remind every single human being of the inherent collective intelligence they were born with to act, to be this new government by and for the people - Now. 

In support of the up-coming Peace and Peak Performance weekend in NYC, I encourage all who can to bring their passions, their sense of urgency and join with others ready to do this work.  I resolve for 2018 a renewed commitment to this amazing living process called Open Space Technology.  Bring your passion and let’s meet up now. 

Skye Hirst, This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

About the author: Skye Hirst is one of the founders of the Autognomics Institute Inc. She brings her empirical experience from coaching, organzational consulting, inquiry circles, healing and working with people up close and personal for 39 years


Recent Papers

Value-Intelligence In All Creative Organisms ~ Skye Hirst with Assistance from Norm Hirst. August 2010

Robert Hartman discovered a value intelligence inherent in all life as early as the 1950's but he was ahead of his time.  Now learn how this value lens is formed within and how we can access it using the HVP.

Using the Hartman Value Profile as used in coaching by Hirst she discovers the absolutely unique inner landscape within that each individual has developed, we discover the world of values and value dynamics/intelligence from which we human beings and perhaps all organisms find effective action for life and living.
Published in The Robert S. Hartman Institute Annual Journal CLICK HERE

What People Are Saying

 What I Learned from Norm and Sky Hirst And How It Changed My Life
by Rodney Plimpton

Before I met Norm and Skye I had a pretty good handle on how Life worked, or so I thought.  I had a PhD in Social Psychology from Stanford, had studied Human Potential for Five years with Jean Houston, knew all about stimulus-response and something about cybernetics.  I didn’t consciously realize how much my model of life was based on a popular concoction Darwinism, materialism, elitism, and computer science.

Medicine in a New Key

Conventional medicine is dying ultimately because it is based on an obsolete dominant mechanistic model that does not recognize the coherence of the organism

Dr. Mae-Wan Ho explores how a science of the organism could underpin a new organic medicine that would best serve the nation.

Visit to learn more.

New organic Way for Medicine

The philosophy of Hans Jonas inform this paper by Schwartz and Wiggins to surmount the mind-body dualism plaguing Western thought. They show us the ways of organism; the difference between inorganic and organic reality and how each being must begin from its own direct experience of life in self and in others; and then how the two meet in the living being.  Since life is ultimately one reality, their theory presents the polarities that must be reintegrated by psyche with soma such that no component of the whole is short-changed, neither the objective nor the subjective.  Here they define the polarities within living beings and the requirements of organisms to live and thrive.



"From the organizing principles of life we can learn better choices for acting, both individually and for social policy." ~ Quote from Life As Creative Organisms by Norm Hirst