Transitional Absurdity: Contemporary Craziness and Its Antidote (Or How the Ludicrous Can Co-Exist With Hope)

Creative Systems Theory brings very big-picture, long-term perspective to the human condition. It addresses understanding as a whole, not just particular concerns, and it helps us make sense of the very different ways we have understood ourselves and our worlds … Read More

Rethinking Identity: How the Myth of the Individual Provides Essential Evidence for Cultural Maturity’s Needed “Growing Up” As a Species (and the Critical Importance of a More Complete Picture of Identity Going Forward)

There are few more important human questions than that of identity—just what it means to be a person. We can easily assume that its answer is obvious—I look in the mirror and there I am. But in fact the answer … Read More

Perspective for a Time of Deep Discord: Why We See Things So Differently (and Why Just Trying To Talk About It Is So Often Not Helpful)

In these times of extreme social/political polarization it can be unsettling—indeed frightening—just how differently people with conflicting views can see things. We can legitimately wonder if the discord we encounter today will in time put the whole democratic experiment in … Read More

Culturally Mature Perspective and the Climate Change Debate: How Asking the Wrong Question Results in Actions That Are, in Effect, Suicidal (an Update)

[In response to today’s extreme social/political polarization, I’ll be doing a series of articles that take front-page-news issues and address them from a big-picture, systemic perspective—from above the partisan fray. My intent with this series is not to get people … Read More

Bringing Big-Picture Perspective to the Often Pain-filled Confusions of the Immigration Debate

[In response to today’s extreme social/political polarization, I’ll be writing a series of articles over the next year that take front-page-news issues and address them from a big-picture, systemic perspective—from above the partisan fray. My intent with this series is … Read More

Looking Out Twenty to Fifty Years: An Extended View Helps Put Cultural Maturity’s Challenge in Perspective

In an earlier post that looked at the concept of Cultural Maturity’s big-picture significance, I briefly described a recent recognition that provides insight important to effective culturally mature advocacy. As I’ve finished up my new three book series and begun … Read More

Understanding the Significance of Cultural Maturity and the Ideas of Creative Systems Theory—Current Perspective

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  (This is a lengthy piece. But it is particularly important for the perspective it provides.) I formally introduced the concept of Cultural Maturity and the basic ideas of Creative Systems Theory over forty years ago. In the years since, … Read More

Seven Questions On Which Our Future Depends—Perspective From a Different Kind of Futurist

I approach the future differently than most people whose work addresses what may lie ahead. Most futurists focus on new technologies, or possibly on obstacles that might present themselves in our efforts at technological advancement. I see the questions on … Read More

Making the World Great Again: Bringing Big-Picture Perspective to the American Presidential Election and the Critical Tasks of Leadership Going Forward.

Watching the Republican and Democratic nominating conventions motivates me to step back for some big-picture reflections on the challenges that a next U.S. president must confront. Ultimately my reflections expand to the larger question of how we best think about … Read More

Why Science and Religion Need Not Be At Odds: A Brief Look at How Creative Systems Theory Reconciles this Most Fundamental of Conflicts

[The following reflections are adapted from two of my most recent books: Cultural Maturity: A Guidebook for the Future and Quick and Dirty Answers to the Biggest of Questions.] The concept of Cultural Maturity proposes that the reason many ultimate … Read More

Rethinking Pay Inequality—And other Surprising (and Often Controversial) Implications of Better Understanding the Archetypally Feminine

Early in my writing, I took an important distinction for granted—that between gender and archetypall-masculine or archetypally-feminine qualities. I assumed that the difference between these two kinds of concepts would be obvious. I now recognize that for many people this … Read More

The Future of Morality: Why Moral Decisions in Times Ahead Will Require Skills New to Us as a Species

Addressing future moral challenges will require new human capacities, capacities that before now we could not have fully understood, much less applied. In part this is because we will be confronted by new kinds of moral questions—for example, those that … Read More

Trump, Obama, and Our Modern Crisis of Confidence in Leadership: Making Big-Picture Sense of Unsettling Realities

I have put off commenting about presidential election politics in the U.S. both because the topic already consumes too much air time and because the larger portion of supposed debate has been trivial, and often simply ludicrous. But if what … Read More

What Cultural Maturity is Not #1: Techno-Utopian Delusions

In my recent book, Cultural Maturity: A Guidebook for the Future, I divide the most commonly encountered views of the future into five “scenarios” (to use the language of futurists): We’ve Arrived Scenarios, We’ve Gone Astray Scenarios, Postindustrial/Information Age Scenarios, Postmodern/Constructivist Scenarios, and Transformational/New … Read More

What Cultural Maturity is Not #2: Postmodern Pseudo-Significance

In my recent book, Cultural Maturity: A Guidebook for the Future, I divide the most commonly encountered views of the future into five “scenarios” (to use the language of futurists): We’ve Arrived Scenarios, We’ve Gone Astray Scenarios, Postindustrial/Information Age Scenarios, Postmodern/Constructivist Scenarios, and Transformational/New … Read More

What Cultural Maturity is Not #3: Confusing Spiritual Ideology With the Future’s Needed “Growing Up”

In my recent book, Cultural Maturity: A Guidebook for the Future, I divide the most commonly encountered views of the future into five “scenarios” (to use the language of futurists): We’ve Arrived Scenarios, We’ve Gone Astray Scenarios, Postindustrial/Information Age Scenarios, Postmodern/Constructivist Scenarios, and Transformational/New … Read More

Creative Systems Theory—Addressing the Challenge of Culturally Mature Conception (An Introductory Overview— long form)

Creative Systems Theory presents a comprehensive framework for understanding purpose, change, and interrelationship in human systems. It is radically significant both for the practical usefulness of its ideas and for the fact that it represents the kind of conceptual perspective … Read More

Integrative Meta-perspective: Understanding the Cognitive Underpinnings of Cultural Maturity (Long Form)

Cultural Maturity is much more than a metaphor for what the future asks of us. It reflects critical changes not just in what we think, but how we think, a necessary—and developmentally predicted—cognitive reordering. Creative Systems Theory calls the new … Read More

The Future of Morality: Why Moral Decisions in Times Ahead Will Require Skills New to Us as a Species (Long Form)

The moral dimension today presents a startling—and easily unsettling— circumstance. Effectively addressing moral challenges is requiring new human capacities, capacities that before now we could not have fully understood, much less applied. In part this is because we confront new … Read More

Beyond “Chosen People” and “Evil Others”—An End to War as We’ve Known It and Other Not Insignificant Consequences—Long Form (With Commentary Pertinent to the Recent U.S. Presidential Election)

The best argument for the concept of Cultural Maturity’s importance is the most basic: not only our future well-being, but perhaps our survival, will depend on changes it describes. As far as survival-related consequences, the most immediate concerns whether we … Read More

The Radical Implications of a New Maturity in Our Relationship With Death — Long Form

One of the most significant new capacities that accompanies Cultural Maturity changes is the ability to engage limits in more sophisticated ways. Of particular importance, we become better able to recognize that some limits are inviolable. Nothing more defined the … Read More

Our Modern Crisis of Purpose—and How Humanity’s Needed “Growing Up” Becomes the Only Option Going Forward ( Long Form)

Modern realities frequently leave people feeling at best confused, at worst cynical and hopeless. In part, this is a reaction to specific concerns—job loss with globalization, terrorism, nuclear proliferation, climate change, and the erosion of familiar moral assumptions to name … Read More

The Radical Implications of a New Maturity in Our Relationship to Death

A new, more mature relationship to limits represents one of Cultural Maturity’s defining characteristics. In my writings, I’ve given special attention to one particularly ultimate example: our human relationship to death. Never in the history of the species has looking … Read More

The Crisis of Gun Violence: Mature, Big-Picture Perspective

The kind of big-picture/long-term vantage provided by culturally mature perspective stretches usual understanding in a couple of key ways. First, it commonly requires that we take into account multiple, interwoven causal factors (it challenges simple “silver bullet” solutions). Second, it … Read More

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