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Some quotes from the past month. I didn’t find much time to write myself:

From Schumacher college in Devon where I followed a course given by Fritjof Capra my old time hero (his book: The Tao of Physics) and Stephan Harding who I will meet again later this month with our CEO circle on nature, technology and humanity:

‘When you haven’t seen a good friend for 10 years, all her body cells will be replaced by new ones. But you will recognise her immediately. It’s all about patterns,’ Fritjof Capra.

‘All life is non-linear. Let’s imagine kicking a stone. It will go in a certain direction that you can predict more or less by applying the laws of physics. But how about kicking a dog? You will disturb him for sure but don’t know what will happen next. The behaviour of a living organism is determined by its own structure rather than by outside forces. The behaviour of a living organism is both determined and free,’ Capra again. So is the implication that in organisational change we only can disturb the (living) system?

‘Technology is a reflection of who we are,’ so if we manipulate each other in a capitalist system, tech will support us doing an even better job in manipulating each other.

‘Our spiritual moments are those moments when we feel most alive. We experience a profound sense of oneness with all.’

‘We withdrew ourselves from nature and treated the outside as machines’

‘Deep experiences are leading to deep questioning leading to deep commitment leading to deep experiences again’

While sailing in Trieste, Italy I heard myself say: ‘We can sail another race, but we won’t improve much. This is where we belong at the moment.’ It felt very real without much emotion. A 28th place in a 65 boat fleet is not something to name in my resume but it felt pretty okay. In the top 20 would have been really good. But we didn’t belong there. I felt at peace with myself.

 

Pretty busy at the moment with the long term strategy of a health insurance provider, coaching a team in the financial sector, in the consultancy business and in the hotel (social) business. Next to that I’m wondering if I should organise a meeting called: leading into the unknown. I was keen to do so but I am more and more convinced that the future isn’t that unknown. Harari is too pessimistic, singularity guys too optimistic about AI and nature (life) is way too complex for us or our machines to understand.

Wozniak co-founder Apple: ‘Artificial Intelligence is mainly artificial. It’s the most hyped domain in tech. I don’t believe in it anymore. People like to believe in machines as Gods who can lead us to unknown horizons.’ From an interview in de Tijd, he continues:  ‘It’s the same with image recognition. Google builds an algorithm and with the help of 10.000 pictures, the machine can recognise a dog. But if you show a dog to a toddler it not only recognises it, the toddler knows how the dog smells, moves and feels. Tech is far away from all that knowledge.’

Otto Scharmer has written ‘The essentials of Theory U.’ It’s considerably fewer pages than the original book, not much new content (and that’s a missed opportunity, I think there is more to say about the right side of the U, about Art and about Tech) but a good and easier read. I always tell clients just to read chapter 21 of the original book but this new version is a good alternative.

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