The trouble with disengaged tribes

The trouble with disengaged tribes is not how ineffective they are at relating to other tribes or governmental institutions in the nation-states where they reside. The trouble is not the injustices they fuel by their honor codes or self justifying stances against outsiders. The trouble is not the trouble they make for themselves by failing to communicate and make themselves understood effectively. The trouble is what's missing.

When the trouble with anything is what's missing, it goes widely unrecognized. How can "what's not showing up" appear on anyone's radar? How can the lack of evidence provide objective measurement of a condition? How can "no sign" be a sign of something? How can we already know what we don't yet comprehend?

What's missing becomes obvious when we can perceive patterns and processes in the obvious evidence. We understand more than what happens and what is connected on the surface. We get the bigger picture of how things drop out of the mix, get overlooked in a frenzy, appear inconceivable to "business as usual" or go into denial to protect addictions. We comprehend how minds go to extremes to maintain their current patterns, predictions and processes. We expect problems to result from what's missing, from errors of omission and from "too little - too late".

When a problem is created by what's missing, it changes everything to provide what's missing. The self perpetuating system cannot come up with it on its own or even recognize what's missing. Yet the slight addition of what's missing yields more than a slight change for the better. It gets off the merry-go round of chronic oscillations. It introduces a second order change. It transforms how things appear, what they mean and what now seems possible.

Here's four patterns I'm seeing that reveal what may be actually missing:
  • When we simply speak of tribes in general, we're missing the complications discerned by recognizing four kinds of tribes. We make tribes seem different from other forms of governance, but not differentiated among the single form they share in common.
  • When we form abstract opinions about tribes, we're missing how they are right in their own minds and on their own terms. We make ourselves right, but not include all four ways of being right.
  • When we predict the trouble that tribes will cause others, we're missing what they are predicting for themselves. We validate our own predictions without extending permission for them to persist with their own predictions for a time.
  • When we do battle with tribes who oppose us, we're missing out on vanish their adversity. We're reacting to their reactions to our reactions inside a vicious cycle, instead of inducing their self restraint by indulging their over-zealousness.

Of course this is an example of a larger pattern than the trouble with tribes. This is also the trouble with bureaucratic stagnation and failed initiatives to improve the service from public servants. It's the trouble with the chronic opposition to health care revisions, educational reforms and peer 2 peer governance, production and property. In every instance, what's missing is making the trouble that appears to be with whatever is obviously happening.

No comments:

Post a Comment