From Sunday Syntropy August 8th
If a friend of yours looks at a photo of you taken when you were six, can they see you they know now in the photo, even though every cell of your biology is different?
When we walk beside our local river, do we know the river, even though every drop of water is not the same drop as was there yesterday?
When we observe a daffodil, do we know the flower, even if it is not the same flower like the one we had in our vase last week?
There is a pattern to existence of all things. My mentor Buckminster Fuller called this the Pattern Integrity.
The Pattern Integrity of you. Of our local river. Of the daffodil. Everything that makes up each is changing in every moment, but the Pattern Integrity remains evident.
(You might also call the Pattern Integrity the Tao, from Tao de Ching. The Tao that can be spoken of is not the Tao. The name that can be named is not the constant name.)
Ideas also have a Pattern Integrity at the moment of their inception. As an idea, they are ephemeral, weightless.
Any idea requires the cooperation and collaboration of a myriad of things to come from idea to form. This includes people, technologies, knowledge, flows, networks, connections, emotions, energy…
Without these an idea stays formless, a thought that flicked across the steady flow of a million thoughts had in a day.
If we are the steward of the idea, we can choose the form we want to impose on the ephemeral idea to bring it to life.
An idea to end slavery can be manifest in an infinite number of forms. We chose the form we want it to take. Educating girls, building a sustainable denim company, working to change large-scale economic systems…not one right or wrong, all forms to achieve ending slavery.
In a Syntropic World, we hold the idea as sacred, especially if the idea is big and bold enough to get us up and moving every day, day in, day out, even when the going gets hard.
We as the stewards of the idea are not its owners, rather we are its partner stewards. Our job is to create the ecology in which the idea might come fully to life.
The moment we impose our desired form on the idea, without regard to its unique Pattern Integrity, we are doing exactly as we have been trained to do by business-as-usual. Exploit the idea. Colonise the idea. Or extract the life out of the idea.
The Pattern Integrity of the idea is essential to its healthy existence and endurance.
Let’s make this personal.
When you were born you arrived with your own unique Pattern Integrity. You might have been naturally an adventurer, open to speak to pretty much anyone, always willing to play with others. Life conditions may have raised excesses of caution in some of these natural elements. You may have had to build walls of defense. But the Pattern Integrity is still there.
As parents of children or domestic pets, our role is to create the ecology in which our charges thrive. An ecology where their Pattern Integrity becomes fully alive.
The ecology is not a fixed state. It flows with change as the world and conditions around us change.
The parent needs to be in constant attunement to the child, the environment, the changes, adapting the ecology as needed. Introducing new things, removing old things, adding considered obstacles and polarities. Not just ALL NICE, ALL SOFT, but including challenges, knee-grazing, heartbroken moments. Stewarded with love and infinite consideration. Tracking the maturity of the child in multiple dimensions and domains, from emotional, intellectual, cognitive, physical, empathetic, moral…and adapting to create a flow towards the higher-order expression of the Pattern Integrity.
We know we desire this type of ecology for ourselves. Not one that is cushioned from life, too easy, too entitled. Rather one that has the framework that allows both growth and expression. Where we are held to our better, best; not given permission to get away with our own BS and smallness.
As stewards of an idea to create an enterprise, our role is similar. How do we create the ecology for the idea to begin to take form? What does this idea need from us? Specifically?
This question rather than what we want the idea to look like..which is akin to saying you want your child to be a football player, no matter what, completely divorced from what the child wants or needs; is a question that needs to be repeated every day.
To steward an idea and its Pattern Integrity from idea to form is a constant dance of attention and emergence.
It is not a linear process. Nor is it going to obey human timelines. It will be ready for the next step when the circumstances and conditions in which the idea is becoming manifest are ripe. It will wither on the vine if we impose our wants and needs onto it…becoming a distorted, stunted image of the potential that lived with the original idea and its Pattern Integrity.
Included in our role as stewards of the idea is to know the Pattern Integrity intimately.
Not this. Not that. This.
And to become fierce protectors, against every obstacle that seeks to dilute or contaminate the Pattern Integrity of the idea.
We know when we come across an enterprise with its Pattern Integrity intact. Patagonia, the outdoor clothing company, is an example. The work of artists like Marina Abramovic, Banksy or Freddie Mercury clearly demonstrates their Pattern Integrity.
To know our Pattern Integrity, which can include emotions – dark and light, skills acquired, certain archetypal patterns, as well as the ideal ecology to bring out the full magnificence of our Pattern Integrity, is to create the field in which we might bring our best to life.
As steward leaders of a Source Idea, our role is to do the same…what does this idea need now. Then now? Then now? How do we create the ecology for flourishing? The enterprise architecture, what we in Syntropic World call the Trust Manifesto, enable a boundary and container in which we can steward the ecology for the idea to come fully to life.
This type of stewarding lives in a constant inquiry, a constant recalibration and adaptation. Dancing between the poles to keep the shape. Partnering with the idea as a living entity, not as some dead, separate thing.
It is a completely different way to lead, to give birth to ideas that become enterprises that serve earth and all her creatures.
It is beautiful, inviting flow, cycles, autopoietic processes, and partnering with.
**For more, please download the ebook, How to Start a Syntropic Enterprise.