Intent of the Union of the Whys
This initiative responds to an increasing sense of the multiplicity of perspectives perceived as relevant to understanding and navigating the world -- whether as an individual, a group or in terms of governance of the world itself. The challenge is exemplified by:
The challenge can of course be understood as how to unify such matters within a coherently ordered framework, duly discarding that which is judged irrelevant or of inferior quality. The approach here is however to explore how those sensitive to this variety, whatever its quality -- and the complex dynamics associated with it -- might understand their relationship to each other and to any coherence emerging from such appreciation. The focus is therefore on avoiding premature closure on particular patterns of order in response to any particular sense of urgency.
As a methodological device, the challenge is framed in terms of the dynamics amongst the "whys" -- as questions -- rather than amongst the "wise" imbued by such questions in order to provide "answers" and closure.
Hence a concern with the dynamics of some form of Union of the Whys rather than of a Union of the Wise. In a sense the wise may then be understood as driven or ridden by questions such as "why" -- however these are understood as related to other classical questions such as "what", "where", "when", "which", "who" (including "whom" and "whose"), or "how", collectively studied as "WH-questions" (cf Engaging with Questions of Higher Order: cognitive vigilance required for higher degrees of twistedness, 2004; Functional Complementarity of Higher Order Questions: psycho-social sustainability modelled by coordinated movement, 2004 ). Such questions are notably of significance in the design of information search engines.
The assumption is that "why" questions are fruitfully considered as more fundamental than other WH-questions -- or than the answers which they may engender for reframing individual or collective strategy. The issue is the contrast between question-based dialogue and answer-based dialogue -- and the proportion of time devoted to questions and their improvement, as opposed to that devoted to answering questions that are essentially inadequate to the challenge.
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