Mary Luz Robayo, Leo Semashko
Sociological Theory: Rationale of Four-dimensionality of Society as a Prerequisite for Social Harmony Science
This article does not pretend to be academic unlike other articles of the ABC. It is just a very short essay about the essence of the traditional sociology, its destiny and its positive grains that serve as premises for the growth of the new sociology, or, if you will, of the new social philosophy and the groundbreaking sociological worldview and thinking presented in the ABC.
1. Disharmony of industrial sociology. Classic sociology theories – hereinafter called sociology – over the last century and a half, from Carl Marx (1818–1883) and Max Weber (1864–1920) to the theorists of early XXIst century – Anthony Giddens (born – 1938), Pierre Bourdieu (1930–2002) and others, has been an ideology of the industrial society (civilization) at the various stages of its development. Even Marx, rejecting the capital in his theory of communism and its first phase – socialism, only asserted a different type of industrialism – socialism. All types of industrialism are identical in terms of priority of the economy (industry) and economic ownership that even in the form of state property of socialism it ends up being in the hands of ruling bureaucratic class as its private property. And the only demand of this class is the maximization of the profit. Therefore, all these theories were partial, one-dimensional, disharmonious and economic, and they justified the partial nature of industrialism at the same time irreconcilably criticizing each other and aspiring to achieve the absolute truth.
Due to its partial nature and one-dimensionality, the sociological ideology, by definition, was not capable to perceive in a theoretic manner the society as a whole and thus ascend to the level of comprehension of the holistic social harmony. That is the reason why currently there is no corresponding sociological science: among more than 120 branches of sociology there is no place for the sociology of social harmony, moreover, it cannot exist among them. All industrial sociologies remain partial regardless of their political color: white (monarchism), red (communism), yellow (liberalism), brown (national socialism), etc. All of them are ideologies of one particular form of industrialism that criticizes and rejects all the rest. That is why they all remain disharmonious. All sociological theories are sociologies of industrial disharmony with a preponderance and priority given to one or another social particularity. Consequently, they are deprived of the theory of social harmony.
2. Origins of harmonious sociology. The sociological science about the society in its holistic harmony originates under four fundamental tangible circumstances:
À. The industrial disharmonious civilization eliminates itself in all its kinds; it degrades and leads the mankind to its perdition in many partial ways: environmental, financial, military, informational, and psychological (personality degradation and destruction), etc.
B. The traditional disharmonious sociology, helpless in a positive solution of global integral problems of industrialism, proves to be more likely an ideology of its degradation and perdition (in particular, postmodernist sociology) rather than an ideology of crossing to a new stage and of survival, demonstrating its powerlessness.
C. The first tangible sprouts of a new, harmonious civilization are coming to life. Those were briefly defined before and are related first of all to the globalization process that is overcoming the traditional industrial fragmentation.
D. New sociological ideas related to the social integrity and its harmony are emerging, and they help to better understand its fundamental theoretical prerequisites that have been spontaneously evolving within industrial sociology. From a scientific perspective this is its most important positive moment that will be described in details further on.
3. Prerequisites of harmonious sociology. The only social science that is currently aspiring to integral knowledge of the society as a whole and its social harmony is Tetrasociology used a keystone in order to create this ABC of harmony. (In more than 35 years of searches and development of this theory, the analogues for Tetrasociology were not found.) However, this science was created basing on the thorough searches and studies of the required sociological premises, which can be found in tetradic social ideas. Here we would like to mention the most important ones.
The first fundamental sociological idea of Tetrasociology was formulated by young Marx in 1845 within the Introduction into German Ideology where the four spheres of society as production spheres were identified for the first time (in parenthesis – the corresponding terminology of Tetrasociology): material production (Technoecosphere), production of the forms of communication and organization (Orgsphere), spiritual production (Infosphere) and production of a human in two forms: birth and upbringing (Sociosphere). In accordance with them Marx distinguishes four spheres of public life: economic, political, spiritual and social. This first tetradic macrosociological model was reduced subsequently by mature Marx to one-dimensional disharmonious economism or materialistic monism. (All the similar examples are well known, that is why we won't provide any references here in order to not overload our essay with academicism).
Max Weber, an outstanding German sociologist, defined almost the same 4 spheres in the society: economy, politics, religion and upbringing, and also he tried to divide the population according to their occupation in these spheres, which was a new fundamental step. For Tetrasociology this idea has become a basis for the discovery of the spheral harmonious classes of the population. These classes are described in details in this book. He also distinguished the four types of social actions and their motives that are close to the tetradic human structure in Tetrasociology.
Talcott Parsons (1902–1979) – a major American theoretical sociologist. He created a macrosociological model as a system of four fundamental functions and corresponding four societal subsystems (extremely big and universal): economic, political, social and cultural, which remind of four spheres. The four classes of social institutions and four classes of social roles correspond to them.
Alvin Toffler (born 1928) – an American futurologist, who is developing the theory of three civilization waves or civilizations in the human history: agrarian, industrial and informational. The general mechanism of civilization development is a spheral structure of any society including the four spheres: technosphere, sociosphere, the sphere of power and infosphere. These spheres have different resources, which are reproduced by them: things, people, organizations and information. All these ideas are integrated within Tetrasociology and represented in the ABC.
Pierre Bourdieu, an outstanding French sociologist, perceived the society in general as multidimensional space, a structure containing the ensemble of four social fields and practices with corresponding four types of public capital: economic, cultural, social (human) and symbolic (political).
Anthony Giddens – an outstanding English sociologist. He doesn't dwell on the general theory of the society as a whole, but within the analysis of its various historic types he distinguishes four types of stratification, i.e. dividing population, systems: slavery, castes, estates and economic classes. He also distinguishes four kinds of exploitation and four modern classes: top, middle, workers and peasants that are divided basing on their property, not their occupation.
Tetradic sociological ideas have been evolved by other sociologists: Spencer, Pareto, Park, Berger, Sztompka, Castells, etc. [11; 9 etc.]. Synthesizing these ideas, Tetrasociology is being developed with reason.
4. Tetrasociology is harmonious sociology in terms of scientific knowledge of harmonious civilization as a whole. This definition is justified and described in details in the first chapter of the ABC and the corresponding literature [1–15, etc.].
The article basic postulates are expresses in the ABC of harmony model-54 of tetranet thinking.
Mary Luz Robayo, PhD; Sociology Professor, University of Manizales, Columbia.
Leo Semashko, PhD; Philosopher and sociologist; Global Harmony Association (GHA) Founder and President since 2005. Address: Saint-Petersburg, Russia
Web: www.peacefromharmony.orgÅ-mail: leo.semashko_at_gmail.com
Synergetics and Philosophy of Social Harmony
In art developed and evident harmony is presented by the unity of contrast and balance in which these oppositions do not simply coexist but are counterbalanced and given a proportion. In social Synergetics the concept "harmony" gets its further development and generalization in the concept of social self-organization as the unity of social order and social chaos which is close to concept of "unity in diversity". Within its framework the concept "self-organization" is not reduced to "the birth of order from chaos" as it is quite often stated in popular works  and what physical Synergetics (the thermodynamics of open systems) usually emphasizes. It assumes not only the birth of order from chaos but also of chaos from order. The laws of its relations are widely investigated in the recently developed Synergetic Philosophy of history .
The generalized concept of social harmony assumes such an alternation of the conditions of social order and social chaos where these fundamental contrasts appear to be counterbalanced. The Synergetic concept of self-organization develops the classical concept of the development (Hegel, Marx and others). Now the development is understood not only as a transition from more simple forms of order to more complicated ones (traditional understanding of social progress) but also as a transition from chaos to order and from order to chaos. And this transition is caused exclusively by the interior factors which are spontaneous for any system. The self-organization takes place both in the sphere of social institutes (ontological aspect) and in the sphere of social ideals forming the structure and functions of these institutes (gnoseological and axiological aspects).
The most important result of the social Synergetics is the discovery of the law of self-organization of public (inter-subjective) ideals. The spiritual self-organization assumes the periodical differentiation (disintegration) and integration (synthesis) of social ideals: in other words the alternation of tendencies to ideological monism and ideological pluralism. This means the periodical triumph of one kind of ideals and the fall of the other. Social ideals put sense into life and death of any individual, thus an important but a bit paradoxical conclusion follows: the harmonious development of any society assumes both ineradicable tragedy and inevitable comedy of any human activity. And also the combination of tendencies to heroization and gamization ("simulacrisation" according to Baudrillard) of the social life. Self-organization of the social reality equally excludes absolutization of both: ideological monism and ideological pluralism.
From the law of self-organization of social ideals follows the inevitability of humanity aspiration to achieve the condition of absolute harmony for the entire humanity (Synergetic concept of the superattractor). This concept develops and generalizes the concept of noosphere. At the same time it differs essentially from the noosphere first of all because it is not only the perfection limit in the development of social order but is the perfection limit in the process of the synthesis of social order and social chaos.
The Synergetic Philosophy of history opens the deep sense of fight of inter-subjective ideas, because of this fight some general human kernel is "shelled" from the particular human ("relative") ideals. Because of this the fight of ideals is not senseless as it leads to formation and implementation of the absolute ideal. This process is potentially endless and reminds the spiral approach to the so called singular condition.
The all human ideal of social arrangement assumes the establishment of the all human ideal of a human individuality, beyond the framework of which an ideal society can not exist. This ideal is not given in a ready form. Such ideal can not be replaced with different kinds of private human ideals (communist, Christian, Islamic, Buddhist, Nazi and others). Such ideal is the superattractor of the harmonious civilization in which all corresponding human ideals are formed and realized both on level of society and individuality. Here it is impossible to say what is initial here. The ignoring of such interconnection has always differed the utopian approach from the pragmatic one. Both processes proceed simultaneously. Therefore the Synergetics lead us back to the idea of the global progress and its sense consists in the forming and realization of the all human ideal both of any society and individual.
An empirical basis for such conclusion is an observed (beginning approximately from the 70-s of the ÕÕ c.) process of globalization in economical, political, social and cultural spheres of the social life. The globalization is connected with two opposite tendencies in the life of the humanity in the 21st century: 1) the growth of the dependence of an individual on its surrounding society: the growth of orders and programmed individual actions, the limitation of individual freedom, the draught to the totalitarianism; 2) the growth of the society dependence on a freewill of any individual being part of this society: the expansion of scales of the permissiveness and draught of anarchy. Both tendencies proceed at the same time and that is why the so called paradox of Prigozhin appears: "The globalization and the net revolution lead not only to the bigger coherence of people one with another but also to the role increase of any separate individual in the historical process" [62, 156].
The Synergetic Philosophy of history shows how the described paradox can be overcome in the concept of the superattractor. In the practical activity of people the search for the harmony between chaos and order appears in a form of search of harmony between the freedom and the responsibility. Certainly everybody agrees that freedom is better than the absence of freedom and the law ("responsibility") is more preferable than lawlessness. The problem lies not in what is better but in how to combine them because they quite often contradict one to another. Thus Synergetics reveal the connection of the objective harmony between chaos and order and the subjective one between freedom and responsibility.
Thus, the self-organization of the social reality aspires to achieve harmony between chaos and order and therefore it aspires to achieve harmony in human actions between freedom and responsibility and harmony between the rights and the obligations. But harmony does not imply the primacy of any harmonious component. That is why it can not be both the primacy of chaos before order and order before chaos and therefore the question of the primacy of freedom before responsibility or responsibility before freedom is deprived of any sense. It is replaced with the question of only temporal and relative priority of one of it in terms of separate historical stages. The primacy and the priority are essentially different concepts.
Thereby, according to the social Synergetics the highest "ABC of Harmony" consists of the endless approach of humanity to condition of the superattractor of the harmonious civilization. From here it follows that even though in history there is no "preestablished harmony" between order and chaos and therefore between the good and the evil (contrary to Leibnitz) still the self-organizing harmony between the specified factors appears. The practical meaning of the Synergetic approach to the social harmony consists in the search of laws of exit from the modern spiritual chaos which can lead to a humanitarian catastrophe. This exit is carried out by the conscious creation of the harmonious civilization in which an important organizing ideological role belongs to the ABC of Harmony.
Key substantial moments are expressed in the tetranet thinking model-55:
Vladimir Pavlovich Bransky: Professor, Department of Science and Technics Philosophy, Philosophy Faculty, Saint-Petersburg State University. Education: graduated from philosophy and physics faculties of this university; Doctor of Philosophy; about 200 published works, among them 10 monographies.
Address: Saint-Petersburg, 196135, Tipanov St 18 – 83, Russia
Matjaž Mulej and Zdenka Ženko
Harmony as Systems Cybernetic and Holistic Behavior
In centuries after the renaissance and during industrialization and post-industrialization, humans have made enormous progress in knowledge about nature, society and technology. Though, these efforts were attained without enough of interdisciplinary cooperation. Thus, along with crucial insights by many kinds of natural, social, engineering, humanistic sciences etc., all of which have limited their insights to their single selected viewpoints only, crucial oversights have also resulted. Wrong decisions and actions results from this dangerous one-sidedness, all way to illnesses, business bankruptcies, world wars and world economic crises, poisoned nature around us, and the danger that the current human civilization disappears.
In the period around the Second World War Ludwig von Bertalanffy (a philosopher, art historian and theoretical biologist, hence an interdisciplinary personality) created his response to this problem with his General Systems Teaching (General Systems Theory). At the same time Norbert Wiener, a mathematician, worked with biologists and engineers on solving a complex problem for which they used an interdisciplinary approach, under the name of Cybernetics. This word implies impact, too. Bertalanffy states that he has created his General Systems Teaching against over-specialization in order to help humans attain wholeness of insight and action instead of one-sidedness and resulting oversights and failure.
Systems approach enters the scene to build bridges between specializations to come as close to wholeness of outcomes of their common work as possible. Methods of interdisciplinary creative cooperation help specialists to be specialized and to come close enough to wholeness, at the same time. These methods are crucial for the systems approach to be real rather than fictitious, limited to a single viewpoint )
The human need for holism of approach and wholeness of outcomes of work means that every professional, and especially manager, needs a combined capacity:
·Understanding that this profession is necessary, but not enough for the organization / human / society / humankind to solve the holistic issues.
·Capability to listen to each other, as mutually different specialists who are therefore complementary to each other.
·Capability to nurture ethics of interdependence due to mutual differences and resulting complementarity.
·Understanding that the managers create the organization, and their coworkers create its products and services, requiring different professional knowledge.
This combined capacity is the essence of what is called systems approach. This combined capacity of diversity makes also the ground for harmony, which covers wholeness of diversity and vice versa.
Creative interdisciplinary cooperation helps, but it can reach only the 'requisite' holism of approach and the requisite wholeness of outcomes. This means: It is the human role to select and collect the professionals that will cover all, and only, essential and no unessential viewpoints, make them a team with ethics of interdependence due to their complementarity as specialists, and thus to attain the requisite holism and wholeness. This approach leads to harmony, to its cybernetic and holistic thinking/approach/behavior/theory:
·Systems thinking/approach/behavior/theory is crucially different from the position of any other science and practice: it is basis for Cybernetics.
·Systems thinking/approach/behavior/theory is therefore difficult to acquire, because it demands a paradigm shift after so many years of education in a profession with a narrow specialization.
·Systems thinking/approach/behavior/theory and cybernetics is acquired for the interdisciplinary creative cooperation.
This means that the systems thinking/approach/behavior/theory – in its educational – acquirement phase – works on a paradigm shift helping humans become more sensitive to their interdependence with other humans, nature and equipment, and more holistic in their approach and hence able to attain more wholeness in their work outcomes. The paradigm shift is a transition from one-sidedness and narrow specialization to systemic harmonious integrity of diversity in its organic unity.
This paradigm shift supports harmony and benefits from harmony, because it does not involve knowledge of holistic approach and/by interdisciplinary creative cooperation only, but also values, culture, ethics and norms (VCEN) of mutual respect and interdependence that is due to mutual differences. With these differences humans complete each other up. Thus, both specialization and resulting differences, on one hand, and mutual cooperation through holistic approach and by VCEN resulting harmony, on the other hand, are crucial for humankind to survive in the current times.
The model-56 of the article contents:
Matjaž Mulej, Dr. (economics), Dr. (management), Prof. Emeritus (Systems and Innovation Theory). University of Maribor, Faculty of Economics and Business, Maribor, Slovenia; and International Academy for Systems and Cybernetic Sciences (President), Vienna, Austria; and IRDO Institute for Development of Social Responsibility, Maribor. E-mail: mulej_at_uni-mb.si
Address: EPF, P.O.Box 142, Razlagova 14, SI-2001 Maribor, Slovenia
Web: www.irdo.si, www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=64
Zdenka Ženko, Dr. (economics), Ass. Prof. (Systems Theory and Innovation Management), University of Maribor, Faculty of Economics and Business.
Address: Maribor, Slovenia. E-mail: zdenka.zenko_at_uni-mb.si
Psychology of Harmony: Exit to Tetrapsychology
We often use the word "harmony" when talking about the topics of care of emotional balance, reflection about our desires, aspirations, results. Harmony of soul, harmony in nature, harmony of sounds. We come across this word everywhere. The majority of people hears a lot about it but seldom meet it in their own life. So what does this mysterious word "harmony" mean?
If we consult the dictionaries we can find different interpretations of this concept. There is a great number of definitions and all of them are correct in their own way.
To my mind harmony is balance, understanding of the laws of creation and your place in it, whether it is personality characteristics, gender relations, and social interaction. But if we interview people on streets, each person will show their own understanding of the word. For the majority of people high income, material benefits, real estate, stability, family, children are synonyms of the happy life. But as soon as the balance is broken, harmony leaves the life.
Harmony for a child is pleasure, sense of warmth and physical comfort. A loss of this condition signalizes disturbance of the balance. For a teenager this is overcoming of physical discomfort and emotional instability. With development of all functions the habitual harmony is disturbed. As long as all human needs are satisfied, they exist in harmony with themselves and the world.
But a fundamental genetic necessity in development and growth is behind all needs and it is practically impossible to satisfy it. And what is natural for the world of plants and animals, for a human being can be a test and a challenge.
Sometimes we refuse to choose this challenge preffering comfort and stability to it. The need of development is often forgotten in favor of the condition of tranquility, and with all exterior circumstances of wellbeing harmony is broken.
And from the moment of loss of condition of harmony a human turns to such science as psychology, hoping to be healed. That is why from the time of creation the humanity seeks the way to come back to Eden of harmony. Scientists, politicians, philosophers, psychologists and society as a whole follow the path of harmony on touch, putting forward hundreds and thousands of theories. Psychology in its turn suggests its recipes for achievement of this condition.
The harmony is restored when an individual satisfies the need of development. That is why the psychology pays so much attention to the personal, spiritual and psychophysical development.
Being harmonious means not only being yourself that is also not just easy but also following the impulse of your development, your movement according to certain God's plan. Having captured this idea one of the greatest thinkers Lao Tzu said: "Truth is the way". Following the Taoists we are going to search our way because we sank into the philistine comfort.
When we are stuck in physical comfort and forget about our authenticity, selfhood, we lose the sense of harmony. Everyone has their own mission and it is necessary to go all the way starting from purification, through unity and recognition of God the Farther, recognition of our divine manifestations and God through our emanations.
Psychology has two branches:
1. Psychology of adaptation and adjustment.
2. Psychology of development which follows the phenomenological manifestation of existence without fear, with readiness to accept all its manifestations.
That is why only those who are not afraid to lose harmony can truly achieve it. These people are in permanent movement and they follow their heart. And every time the award is the state of harmony, joy and happiness.
Psychology by itself is not an answer to such a question of a human being as "Where harmony is and how it is possible to enter this magical world?" Psychology only provides a way to inner balance. And an individual chooses by themselves to move inside their own world or all their life to aspire to illusory image so tantalizingly attractive. There is the only way to find out how the personal happiness looks like – to pass sorrow and joy, despair and exultation, ups and downs. The science of human psychology answers many of questions. We are different but we are united in that we are human beings and this allows scientists to find regularities in our actions, feelings and conditions and to use them for the benefit. The way to harmony is difficult and versatile. It is an eternal labor, search and work on ourselves.
This way lies through holistic four-dimensional psychological model which got the name Tetrapsychology in the work of L. Semashko (8, 253–259).
The basic ideas of the article are presented in the model-57 of tetranet thinking suggested and developed in the ABC of Harmony:
Mikhail Y. Gurov. Education: graduated from St Petersburg State University, psychology department, specialty – psychologist, lecturer. Place of work: International commonwealth of Creative Coaching "Zeora". Position: coach of educational programs.
Address: St Petersburg, Russia
Web: www.lifecoach.org.ru E-mail: gurovmihail_at_mail.ru
Rio-20: the ABC of Sustainable Development in Harmony
The Call of the Congress on Environment in Rio de Janeiro in 2012
We are not going to talk about the increasing environmental hazards as they have been discussed in the millions of books, articles, declarations, etc.
We are not going to talk about the need for sustainable development, which was recognized globally in Rio-1992 and to which the tens of thousands of publications were dedicated.
We are not going to talk about the need for the new way of thinking which would be relevant in the context of global sustainable development. The hundreds of publications were devoted to this topic as well.
We will only talk about the concrete, harmonious, paradigm of sustainable development, and its advantages over the traditional one. It is this paradigm that promises to redirect all the discussions of sustainable development from intellectual impasse to a constructive way. Assessing the current state of the world community, we can note the lack of significant improvements in environmental issues in the last 20 years. It is recognized that the actions and strategies for sustainable long-term preservation of civilization failed. They were revolving in a vicious circle of traditional thinking that led to the problems it is unable to solve. It was Einstein who formulated the following dependence: the problems that exist in the world today cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them. Let us define the main features of the traditional thinking of sustainable development.
1. It is sectoral, partial, fragmentary, and is not able to embrace global integrity of sustainable development as a single global process. This is an industrial and disharmonious type of thinking and reason, adequate to industrial disharmonious civilization, which is now dying off under increasing pressure of its problems, growing like an avalanche. If humanity is disharmonious, then NO any sustainable development in harmony with nature can be possible.
2. It shows its economism, reducing sustainable development to preservation of the natural component in its economic and environmental form, and thus ignoring its integrity that includes all spheres of humanity, and is not limited by the economy. The main weakness of this sustainable development is its economism that does not limit the consumption of resources.
3. It comes from the priority of profit in sustainable development, which is adequate to the basic principle of profit maximization in industrialism, but is incompatible with sustainability of social development in nature.
4. It tries to solve the problem of sustainable development in constantly and sustainably degrading industrialism (industrial civilization), which is a logical contradiction by its original definition.
5. It lacks not only qualitative but also quantitative, digital holistic thinking. Therefore, sustainable development, with its entire set of sectoral mathematical models has not found a single one that would correspond to its integrity.
All the limitations of industrial thinking and mind mentioned above are eliminated in the paradigm of harmonious thinking and understanding, for the first time systematically presented in the ABC of Harmony in 2012. In this paradigm, thinking of sustainable development has the following fundamental characteristics.
1. It is characterized as cohesive, holistic, integral, and able to capture and express sustainable development as a single global process, being a harmonious way of thinking of harmonious civilization that was born in 2009. The ABC of Harmony defines 20 basic, necessary, sufficient and coherent elements/spheres of social harmony, which are at the same time necessary and sufficient premises for holistic sustainable development from harmony. Only this kind of understanding can resolve the impasse of its thinking and strategies.
2. It is getting free of the particularities of economism, defining the logic of sustainable development at its deepest, spheral level that allows us to recognise it as harmonious sustainable development or sustainable development from/in harmony. Sustainable development is identical to harmonious development and vice versa. They are synonymous. Sustainable development of society in nature is totally dependent on society rather than nature. The Earth is the constant given by God to exist till the time of its pre-defined death comes. Its premature death can occur only from industrial society and his human, unreasonable and irrational in their essence. Only reasonable, harmonious society and homo harmonicus, presented in the ABC, are able to overcome it.
3. It comes from the maximization of harmony, including limitation of consumption, in sustainable development, rather than profit from the exploitation of natural resources.
4. It clearly understands the impossibility of sustainable development of industrialism, recognizing its possibility and feasibility only in global harmonious civilization, which is coming to replace the dying industrialism.
5. Not only has it thinking that is defined by spheres, but it also has digital holistic thinking, which is integrally represented in the global model of SOCIONOME (Social genome) in the ABC.
For Rio-20 to escape the sad fate of the previous Congresses, which had a lot of "vanity, organizations, manifestos, resolutions, authoritative writers, but didn't present any relevant decisions that would solve the problem" and which "could not rise to a fairly high level" (Academician N. Moiseyev),
WE CALL the scientific community of Rio-20 to adopt the intellectual paradigm of harmonious sustainable development, which is presented in detail in the ABC of Harmony created by 76 coauthors-members of GHA from 26 countries. The ABC of Harmony contains the ABC for harmonious sustainable development.
Leo M. Semashko, PhD, Philosopher and Sociologist, GHA President.
Address: St. Petersburg, Russia
Web: www.peacefromharmony.org E-mail: leo.semashko_at_gmail.com
Common Good of Humanity through Social Harmony
The concept of 'Common Good of Humanity' means the possibility of production and reproduction of life for humanity on earth, including the capacity of nature to regenerate itself. It includes Aristotle's notion of 'Common Good' from his Politics, who thought that no society could exist unless it shared one of 'common goods'. However it is not only a patrimony common to all, but a state of well-being resulting from the way parameters are combined in order to promote the life of human beings on a living planet. It is conditioned by social harmony.
A new paradigm has to be defined, reconstructing for the present circumstances a holistic vision of the human destiny on earth. We have to elaborate the appropriate visions and practices for the diverse societies of today. This means to rebuild the 'fundamentals' of collective life in the planet, with a different logic than capitalism, which brings humanity and nature to collapse. The ABC offers such logic.
The first one to be redefined is the relation between human beings and nature: to pass from exploitation to respect for it as the source of life. It therefore to consider nature, neither as a planet to be exploited, nor as natural resources that can be reduced to 'commodities', but as the source of life, Its capacity to regenerate itself as such physically and biologically has to be respected. This obviously entails a radical philosophical change. Capitalism considers ecological damages as externalities and develops ecological preoccupations, only when the rate of profit and of accumulation is at stake (green capitalism).
The second 'fundamental' concerns the production of the material base for life (economy). It is necessary to redefine production for life's necessities, prioritizing the use of value over the exchange of values. The present economic system is based on the latter, which is the only 'value'. In contrast, putting the emphasis on usage of value makes the market serve human needs. This means a totally different definition of economy. It would be no longer producing aggregate value for the benefit of the owners of the means of production or of finance capital, but rather a collective activity aimed at ensuring basic needs for the physical, cultural and spiritual life of all humans.
The third axis is the generalizing of democracy, lies not only in the political field, but also in the economic system, in relationships between men and women and in all institutions. In other words, the mere form of democracy, which is often used to establish a fake equality and to perpetuate unacknowledged social inequalities, must be left behind. It is matter of treating every human being as partners in the building of society. This is also a fundamental dimension of social harmony.
The final fundamental aspect of human life in the planet is of cultural character: the reading of reality and the necessary social ethics for self-implication. This is the specificity of human beings. An equal chance of contributing to the Common Good of Humanity has to be given to all cultures, knowledge, philosophies and religions. It cannot be an exclusive role of 'Western civilization', identified by the concept of 'development', and eliminating or marginalizing all other cultures. A revision of the concept of modernity is implied in such a perspective, separating it from capitalism as one of its major expression. However it does not mean falling in a postmodern position negating all forms of structures and of historical dimensions and therefore being the best ideological support of neo-liberalism.
Interculturalism means interaction, exchanges, cultural harmony, in a dynamic perspective, in order to build the Common Good of Humanity. It includes also a spiritual dimension, central in a period when civilization is in crisis. Spirituality is the force that transcends the material world and gives it a meaning. However it presupposes matter that, on the other hand, has no sense without the spirit. It is plural and can be based on various traditions, however always for a common goal: the construction of the Common Good of Humanity.
There may be objections that this is a fanciful utopia. The fact is that human beings need utopias, and capitalism has destroyed utopian thinking, announcing the end of history ('there are no alternatives'). The search for the Common Good of Humanity is indeed a utopia, in the sense of a goal that does not exist today, but that could exist tomorrow. At the same time utopia also has a dynamic dimension: there will always be a tomorrow. Utopia is a call to advance. The existence of thousand of social movements trying to reverse the relation with nature and to establish participative democracy confirms that the utopia is already present.
To change the paradigm of collective life of mankind on earth requires a coherent vision with the aim of building a new civilization able to reverse the dominant contemporary system in all its dimensions, economic, social, cultural and political. It needs a coherent theoretical basis, similar to ABC of Harmony, enabling each social movement to find its place in the edifice as a whole. This cannot be the work of just a few intellectuals, but a collective work. It cannot be one social organization, but rather the one of many forces fighting for the Common Good of Humanity as the new harmonious civilization.
One of the actual suggestions is to propose a Universal Declaration of the Good of Humanity, parallel to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which could serve to organization of the forces of social harmony. The article key content may be presented in the model-58 of coherent harmonious thinking, accepted in the ABC:
François Houtart, born in Brussels in 1925, Dr in sociology and Catholic priest, author of works on Sociology of religion and Sociology of Globalization, professor emeritus of the Catholic University of Louvain. E-mail: houtart_at_hotmail.com
Address: Avenue Sainte Gertrude 5, B-1348, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium
Harmony as Dignity and Protection from Humiliation
Introduction. What is the connection between harmony and dignity? And how can dignity protect from humiliation through harmony? These questions will be discussed from three angles: (1) process, (2) unity in diversity, and (3) globality.
Dignity and humiliation. The first sentence of Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) states, "All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights." In this context, "to be humiliated" is to be demeaned beyond the rightful expectation that basic human rights will be respected. This is historically new. In the English language, it is in the year 1757 that for the first time "to humiliate" appears in the encyclopedia with the meaning "to lower or to depress the dignity or self-respect of someone." Formerly, humiliation was used as pro-social means to "show underlings their due lowly place." This practice is still widely used, but humiliation is increasingly regarded as an anti-social violation of dignity.
Dynamics of humiliation are embedded into relationships and societal structures. They entail actors who inflict acts of humiliation – and sometimes institutional structures inflict systemic humiliation, like in apartheid – and receivers, who feel feelings of humiliation. Humiliation is not always inflicted intentionally. It entails core aspects that are universal and others that are specific to cultural and personal peculiarities. What is universal is that humiliation always is related to feeling "put down" and "held" down. In a human rights based context this is perceived as an illegitimate assault. .
Process. At present, we, the human family on planet Earth, take part in a large-scale historical Zeitgeist shift. It is the transition from unequal to equal worthiness, away from social arrangements where "higher" beings preside over "lesser" beings, toward ranking everybody as equally worthy. This represents also a transition from one definition of harmony to a new definition. Traditionally harmony is being defined as quiet submission of underlings in rigid authoritarian dominator systems (Riane Eisler's coinage). The new definition acknowledges life as being a process, reality as being in flow, and it manifests itself through a never-ending dialogue between equals who nurture relationships of mutual respect and partnership.
Social and psychological dynamics of humiliation can be extremely detrimental to harmony. We can envision a more dignified world, or a decent world, as Avishai Margalit would say, when we undo systemic humiliation and embark on "humanizing globalization with egalization" (Evelin Lindner's coinage) . Realizing the promise of equality in dignity can help improve the human condition at all levels – from micro to meso to macro levels, locally and globally . A decent global society is also a harmonious society or civilization striving for equal worthiness for all. What is needed at the current juncture is global harmony and dignity created in ways that avoid new humiliation.
Unity in diversity. There exist many indigenous approaches to consensus building. These approaches will need to be studied in more depth in the future. Today's mainstream approaches are not yet harmonious enough, including contemporary concepts of democracy. They are still permeated by an excess of rigidity. Asking people to vote "yes" or "no" may lead to the manifestation of dualism where nondualism would be more fitting. In an ever more interdependent world, dependence versus independence are outdated notions. Interdependence connects two entities, ¡ and ¡, in a nondualistic way, ∞.
Leo Semashko proposes his tetradic approach (tetrism) as a way to overcome the indignities of dualism and trialism. He suggests that tetrism creates the universal social space for unity in diversity in its four social and individual dimensions, which he shows in his part of the ABC of harmony in this book.
Globality. Throughout the past millennia, humankind lived in a fragmented, compartmentalized world, where everybody was constantly afraid of their neighbors, since they could quickly turn into enemies. What political scientists call the security dilemma was all-definitorial. Nobody who hoped for peace could escape the need to prepare for war: "Si vis pacem para bellum," The enemy was to be killed, captured, or humiliated into subservience. Humiliating an enemy was seen as a pro-social act.
The more the fact is understood and embraced that we, the human species, are one single human family on a tiny planet which we inherit from our children, the more a window of opportunity opens up to realize the new paradigm of a global harmonious dignity society . The Arab street brought a dignity revolution on its way.
We need a movement that works for long-term social and ecological sustainability on our planet. Equal dignity for all and respect for our natural habitat must be placed before interests that create fragmentation, such as national and profit interests. For this, the author, together with a team of like-minded people, has founded the Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies network (www.humiliationstudies.org), and launched the World Dignity University initiative. For this, Leo Semashko created the Global Harmony Association in 2005, with his mission to pave a conscious way for a harmonious and dignified world.
The content of this article has been translated by Leo Semashko and the author together in the following model-59 of tetranet thinking, as proposed in the ABC:
Evelin G. Lindner, MD, PhDs (Dr. med. and Dr. psychol.), Transdisciplinary Scholar in Social Sciences and Humanities. Founding President of Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies (HumanDHS). Address: World citizen from Norway.
Web: www.humiliationstudies.org, www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=74
The Harmony of Love
The journey of life takes a new direction when we become aware of the unconditional love  residing within our heart every moment. This awareness begins a fresh approach to life that leads to personal peace, sustained natural harmony and genuine inner wealth. It also changes the very fabric of society as we begin to consciously express this unlimited love. Everything and everyone is noticeably affected by its energy as we move through our daily life with each step and encounter.
Being conscious of love ignites the spark that makes all things new and restores the wholeness where we once thought we were incomplete. This is the energy  and wisdom that bridges all the diverse worlds, thoughts and perspectives and restores our innate connection to all things. Love, and more appropriately, unconditional love, is that which brings serenity and understanding within where a moment before it seemed nonexistent and perhaps even impossible.
So how does one realize this simple change of attitude? It begins with a desire to know who we are as a being upon this earthly plane. It is a shift in perspective from seeking in desperation outside ourselves for fulfillment to turning our attention within. By beginning the process of conscious awakening, we start to notice and observe who we are in relation to who we think we are. This subtle shift brings enormous change in personal understanding. We see with new eyes, hear with new ears and perceive a parallel world that always existed yet was blocked out of our consciousness by our own limiting beliefs.
I am often asked, "How do we begin this process?" My response is that to ask this question means it has already started. Such is the nature of self conscious realization – we begin to ask new questions about life  since we are no longer interested in the old habits we have been experiencing. For me, this is not necessarily a spiritual or philosophical journey; rather I liken it to a practical approach of common sense and deliberate effort to "know thyself" and with ever increasing self acceptance, to also "love thyself and all others without condition or limitation".
Each of us is a potent source of love when we allow this energy to express naturally. There is nothing we have to ultimately do, rather we allow ourselves to feel and be love. It is that simple. However, for so many, love is hidden under layers of hurt, trauma, drama, pain and suffering. Emotional memories, unspoken doubt, fear, resentment and a multitude of old beliefs often keep us from realizing that these thoughts and feelings have no real power over us. These notions literally disrupt our inherent sense of harmony. We give them power by living in the past and being afraid of the future. We continually ignore the love that is present every moment by embracing limitation. It is time to change that. It is time to release ourselves from our own self created bondage. When we accept ourselves just for who we are, we transform the moment into peace, wellbeing, harmony, joy and love. This process begins with releasing our limiting beliefs, past mistakes, lack of self worth, pride and ego, through the conscious act of forgiveness. It is up to us as individuals to undertake this journey of healing and conscious awareness.
As we come to know who we are and why we act and react the way we do, we start to see ourselves in the faces of humanity. The reflection of hurt is our hurt, their pain is our pain, and another's anger is our anger, just as laughter and delight reflect our own heart . It is seen in the face of nature too. Her destruction is our destruction, her beauty is our beauty. Equally in our children we see our potential and in their smile we see our joy. These seemingly random expressions are our past thoughts seeking manifestation. It is our reminder: love is the answer and the question.
Being ever aware of love, we readily sustain our harmony under all circumstances. This is the key to effectively navigating through life. By remaining calm and composed in each moment, we keep life in perspective. We are able to connect with the bigger picture of potential while sorting out appropriate courses of action to address any situation before us. We easily release our attachments and reactions knowing that they are only a small part of the experience.
When we remain harmonious our wisdom flows in from the heart and dispels any doubt or fear. This allows us to come up with creative solutions and imaginative ways to expand beyond the perceived problem by embracing each opportunity with love. We give ourselves the chance to change our limited perspective and find new ways to express our unlimited potential. Harmony in our feelings and thoughts is an alignment with the essence of unconditional love .
To see love in others, we must first know it in ourselves. We build a new reality in this present moment when we let go. We change the world when we change our personal perspective. When we choose love over fear, kindness over hate, integration over separation, and peace over war, we bring a new reflection of harmony to humanity… our loving selves.
Unconditional love is powerful energy building of a new, harmonious civilization and a new human – homo harmonicus on the long way of conscious evolution.
The article postulates as a whole is expressed in the model-60 of tetranet harmonious thinking, representing the ABC philosophy of social harmony:
Harold W. Becker is the Founder and President of the internationally recognized nonprofit, The Love Foundation, Inc. and conceived the annual celebration of humanity known as Global Love Day each May 1st.
Address: Florida, USA.
Web: www.thelovefoundation.com, www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=100
Leonid Timoshenko, Star Maestro
Harmony of Music and Music of Harmony
The purpose of our live is to gain knowledge through Creation of the best human values: Beauty, Goodness, Love, Truth, Joy and Happiness.A man devoid of mercy, compassion, honesty and conscience can become an antipode and a destroyer.
The new stage of history in the 21 century signifies first of all the birth of the new Creative Man, Harmonious Man with pure mind, open heart, broad knowledge, philosophical attitude of mind, global coverage of vital interests, love of nature, human, art.A certain kind of ideology of the life of Harmonious man is being formed: the joy of creativity, the discovery of their own talents as well as talents of others and a participation in the general programs of the global system of the creative occupation.Harmonious Man is an individual of the highest rank.
There are no "mediocre people", i.e. people of no talent, because man was created by God in his own image.God is CREATION – Creator of Nature.Only through Creation of any kind it is possible to uncover a gift in any area of human activity. Human talent is the main prerogative of humanity that distinguishes it from the entire living world of the planet.
There are general Laws of Creation which determine the structure of our World.And Music, being a Harmony of Sounds, is the link between Harmony of Men and Harmony of Creation.It is not without reason that Pythagoras created an image of the sounding symphony of the celestial spheres of macro Cosmos, which gives a tune to the micro Cosmos of man and with which it resonates!
Music possesses information and codes, creating the complex multi-dimensional spatial matrix.Through the sound and information wave this matrix is being delivered to the listener, affecting primarily their brain.Certain musical works "reveal" hidden areas of the brain and thereby increase the amount of bonding lines in the perception of the world. The sequence of the activation of the certain areas of the brain also indicates a large amount of information perceived through music.During the process of transition from a purely consumer society to a mixed type of society, i.e. one with a high percentage of involvement in creative processes, humans would need to change their ways of thinking for the modern evolutionary process of human development.
The brain of a composer is the overactive system of perception of external information and radiation of internal information.A large number of active spots in the brain of a composer enables them to write music, connecting to the figurative information fields.Music composition gets a start in thin structures (mental and astral fields), creating a sort of digital audio recording.Organized information carrier is getting discarded into the corresponding active regions of the brain.A playback of a composed musical piece activates the motility of fingers according to the program of the ready-made information matrix and transfers it to the listeners by means of radiation through the active points of the brain of a composer-performer.
Harmonious Music has some interesting features which uncover themselves in many aspects of the impact they have on living organisms and the environment.In particular, this music has an ability to improve human health, and provides listeners with a powerful positive life attitude, opens creativity in adults and children, makes us think in multi-dimensional categories, improves mood, relieves symptoms of apathy and discontent, provides us with the psychological support in the complex dynamic world of modern civilization.
Harmonious music plays an important role in perception, understanding and application of the ABC of Harmony in the era of conscious construction of global Harmonious Civilization and Enlightenment, which the modern society has just entered.
The key ideas of the article are presented in the model-61 of tetranet harmonious thinking, which is developed in the ABC of Harmony as philosophy of social harmony:
Leonid Timoshenko: composer, scientist astrophysicist with a degree. He took an individual conservatory course in composition.He has recorded 178 audio albums. The author of 6 books, and soundtracks to 7 movies and 5 plays.President of the Festival "Talents Unite the World", winner of the arts festivals, award winner of the Guinness Book Record and Guinness Book of Russia. The music tours of the composer have a great success throughout Europe. The GHA Vice-president.
Address: Moscow, Russia.
Web: www.maestrotimoshenko.ru , www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=476
Rationality of Harmony and Responsibility
The knowledge of harmony basis, its ABC, one way or another takes form of competence in life, ability for rational thoughts and actions.
Two types of rationality. Knowledge is one of means of activity justification. only when being correlated with the context of specific needs, hopes, possibilities, it becomes an idea, that is a program of actions, around which communities and collectives are being organized.
The quality of knowledge is the basis of its rationality as well as of rationality associated with activity in the corresponding area.
Rationality in its traditional understanding takes start from the antique idea of "techne" – a skillful transformation of reality. Rationality coincides with the idea of efficiency as accordance of goals with needs and result with goals.
"Technical" rationality discards the category of responsibility as irrational (and ideas of conscience, repentance and etc. associated with it) or treats it as responsibility for realization of rational (=effective) idea. The consequence of absolutization of such rationality is immorality, negative aspects of scientific and technological progress nourishing misology, antiscientism and totalitarianism.
Nowadays it is becoming clear that "technical" rationality depends on more fundamental rationality rising to the antique idea of "cosmos" as harmonious world wholeness, or probably to the idea of "Dao" as the one corresponding to this wholeness. "Cosmic" rationality does not deny "technical" one but includes it as means of reflection and responsibility. Rationality and responsibility change places – responsibility becomes priority in relation to rationality and the latter (as the mind as a whole) – means of awareness of the depth of original responsibility for harmonious wholeness.
Rationality as competence. Knowledge, rationality arms in the sense of making us competent. This is social "training" that is provided informally by family education and circle of contacts and also by an entire system of education, state and culture. It helps personality adapt to the environment and makes them competent and free in it.
A special role in life competence and violence prevention is played by logic which is the core of not only intellectual culture but also of responsibility. It is not by chance that the Stoics brought together logic and ethics. Logical and moral cultures are two sides of unity of human freedom and responsibility.
Harmony and nonviolence. A free person treats another person as equally free one considering their interests and enters into a dialogue and responsible relations. They need logic. Whereas logic is not necessary for an incompetent person and therefore a person deprived of freedom. Their will is not limited (not determined) by competence and therefore by freedom. That is why they are intolerant. Their freedom of the will is a will of captivity, and they act basing on principle "who is not with us is against us". Others for them are like themselves and therefore there is no need to listen to them, to talk to them. The only argument and means is violence.
Elimination of violence can be associated only with elimination of powerlessness, incompetence and "lack of ability". This requires knowledge of social harmony, competence in it, i.e. knowledge and training in distribution of public resources, force, power and responsibility.
The culture of rationality, fostered in subculture of scientific societies, nowadays has moved to other levels of social life: political democracy, constitutional state and civil society. It is paradoxically that the complete general civilizational victory of rationality hit the science itself in unexpected and paradoxical ways. In postmodernist society the science appeared to be one of equally probable and normative systems deprived of the halo of special "advancement" and the right for arbitration. Furthermore, Logos was identified with violence and the grounds for that can be founded in industrial militarized society.
However, I think that current rumors about the crisis of logocentrism and rationalism in modern culture are greatly exaggerated. The rationality is so deep and refined that is capable not only to take a form of a new simulacrum and other "cool" virtuality but also to shift to a brand new level. Searches in this direction are not so popular but are noticeable in many areas of knowledge, especially in social sphere as a response to crises of traditional, "technical" rationality that turned out to be deadlocked by crises insoluble for it and global problems and scale of irresponsibility growing from its powerlessness.
The world continues to be harmoniously holistic but the level of its rational comprehension is hopelessly behind its modern and global quality which requires new competence and person training. This requires fundamental rational knowledge of social harmony, and its new logical expression was attempted here in its ABC. It embodies at the same time the supreme rationality of harmony and the core responsibility for the future of harmonious civilization.
The logic of this article is rationally expressed in the following model-62:
Grigory Lvovich Tulchinsky – Honored Scientist of Russia, Doctor of Philosophy, Professor SRI Higher Economics School (SPb).
Web: www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=ru_c&key=72 E-mail: gtul_at_mail.ru
Mathematical Art Studies and Harmony of Two Cultures
Mathematical Art Studies is an interdisciplinary scientific field which has emerged at the interface of mathematics and art, and currently occupies a key position in the structure of interdisciplinary connections in science .
Figuratively speaking, Mathematical Art Studies is a two-way highway. The researchers in this field are represented by art historians and mathematicians, who have different approaches and scientific interests. This issue has already been discussed a lot.The result of numerous philosophical discussions is expressed in the idea that the reality can be perceived in two ways – artistic and logical, that is, on the one hand, based on emotional and sensual, and on the other hand on intellectual and analytical abilities of human. There has been an opinion established that it is impossible to reach the understanding between the representatives of the two camps, as they see the world differently and "are on a different wavelength" .
The famous British scientist Charles Snow in 1957 defined a threatening rupture between these forms of thinking as the emergence of "two cultures" , opposing one another and constantly moving away from each other.The deepening of this rupture is a typical and dangerous phenomenon of degradation of industrial civilization, which is powerless in face of it.Obviously, it is possible to overcome the gap but not on the level of partial, fragmented and broken consciousness of industrialism, but on the level of holistic harmonious thinking. one of its variants based on tetrasociology is adopted and successfully developed, in particular, in the ABC.Humanitarian and scientific thinking is integral and harmonious as within the framework of multidimensional worldview in general areas of nature, society and man.
All of the above makes the problem of relations between mathematics and art one that is of the great peculiarity. Consequently, the natural question arises whether there is any sense in interaction of these areas, given that there is an impassable barrier of misunderstanding between them.
Without any doubt it does.First of all, from the point of the need to find the ways of mutual understanding. This issue has become highly relevant in the context of the increasing trend of branching and separation of sciences. At the same time the work of philosophical thought remains a necessary and important factor of success of integration process, which is most effectively carried out in Mathematical Art Studies.
One of the most important and required tasks of Mathematical Art Studies is seen in participation in the philosophical process, aimed at promotion of integrative consciousness and establishment of understanding polysyllabic pattern of scientific and artistic display of the world as an integral and coherent system. Approaches and philosophical experience of mathematicians (scientists) as well as those of artists (humanists) are equally valuable.Each party contributes to the idea of harmonious unity of the world their own "branch" criteria and views that are complementary.
Representatives of both mathematics and art are united in understanding of the need for the creation and expansion of the commonly understood theory of harmony in the field of science . It is known that the idea of harmony is deeply rooted in the history of human culture.Given the history it is impossible (maybe even has no sense) to point out whether these are representatives of mathematics or art who are to a greater extent involved in formation and development of the ideology of harmony.Today, when humanity is experiencing a global crisis in relationships with nature, when these relationships clearly demonstrate a negative influence of the factor of "intrascientific misunderstandings," the issue of harmonious development, and therefore, the issue of functional recovery of the ideology of harmony in the scientific and public consciousness, appears to be a relevantproblem of modern science as a whole.This question fully applies to Mathematical Art Studies.
Today Mathematical Art Studies has formed into a sustainable interdisciplinary science field, which examines all the current issues of general cognitive and applied value.Assessment of its prospects is associated primarily with the success in methodological enrichment of artistic process and development of artistic culture of society.
At the same time Mathematical Art Studies remains an important area in general scientific process of forming a new philosophical doctrine of society – the theory of the harmonious development in tetrasociology.Thus, mathematical art studies stands among the number of the most advanced areas of modern science. .
The basic postulates of this article are represented in the model-63 of harmonious tetranet thinking proposed and developed in the ABC of Harmony.
Oleg Bodnar – Architect, Doctor of Arts, Professor, Head of the Department of Arts in Lviv National Academy of Arts and author of over 100 works, including three monographs.
Adress: Lviv, Ukraine
The Secrets and Principles of Harmony: My Grail Quest
Born in a heavy-industrial urban slum, but raised in a nearby semi-rural, coal-mining village, as a, now retired organic, ecological horticulturalist and wild-flora and fauna conservationist, I see the creation of a harmonious civilization, in harmony with the whole of the natural, sacred Creation, as being like the creation of an ecological, all bio-diverse garden, in which there is a fine balance between setting down a formal ground plan and letting Nature evolve, flexibly, in its own way. By way of explanation, I have chosen the above title due to my fascination, since childhood, with the historic, British "Holy Grail" sagas of the Arthurian legends (of my Welsh ancestors) as if one might say that this "Holy Grail" has become the "Harmonious Civilization" of our aspirations, the question How does one best arrive at a full understanding of the guiding secrets and laws of harmony? How does one comprehend clearly the complex whole of which all are parts?
Of all the many books of theology and philosophy that I have read and reflected on, perhaps, the most influential have been, in my early twenties The Way of Zen by the '60's Californian poet, Alan Watts  and The Way and its Power, the Tao-Te-Ching of Lao Tzu (by Arthur Waley) , the verses of Taoist Chinese Philosophy. The intuitive method of Zen Buddhism is the very anti-thesis of the Western intellectual approach of analyzing & arguing. Zen offers the secret of how to extract a lasting Wisdom of what brings harmony (equals shared happiness) and what does not from this slip-stream of endless data. The Taoist message is very simple, like "Mother (Nature) knows best". on our higher spheres of being & living, we need, likewise, to cultivate a social, economic, ethical and spiritual ecology/harmony. one, very early, observes, as a child, that sharing one's toys in friendship is far more conducive to good, harmonious relations than fighting over them; this is so self-evident that all too many adults overlook it, the result being all the unharmonious relationships that plague us with so much war & suffering! The golden key through all my life way was the Hellenic ideal of seeking The Golden Mean that brought balance and harmony between all experienced and perceived extremes. Now, with an emerging global consciousness, and so much free-flow of data, is not this the current state of humanity as a whole? I had, in a long poem of my late teens, sought to resolve the secrets of harmony, by imagining being a truth seeker conjuring up all the ancient Greek philosophers who had contradicted each other about the secret of happiness, such as, juxtaposed, Diogenes, Zeno & Epicurus . This craving to find "truth" had arisen from my teenage loss of faith in the Christian religion of my childhood and early youth, which I had assumed to be "the truth" & the guaranteed way to harmony 'according to the Laws of God & Jesus'. Too much questioning analysis dismantles the whole: but how to put the fragments back together?
From this "whirlpool" or "crucible" (my favorite metaphor, being born of the iron & steel city of Sheffield) however, had emerged "a golden thread through this labyrinth" in the form of the philosophy of existentialism.
While rich in life-experience that taught much Wisdom, this was not conducive to happiness, in fact, almost the reverse till it was, after another bout of existential & emotional despair, that I went into retreat, in the country, with a rescuing poet friend who introduced me to his practice of meditation in the tradition of Zen-Buddhism and Taoism as a way of clarifying the chaos of ideas and emotions hitherto embraced, "as in the still pool where turbulent waters become clear and one sees both the parts and the whole clearly.
For this reason, I would recommend, "seekers of harmony" in either human civilisation or the Planetary Creation as a whole (the two are intertwined and inseparable) to balance up seeking "truth" intellectually in books (the "thesis") with such intuitive retreats "to find one's true self and God" apart (the "antithesis") so as to finally arrive at the synthesis of concepts of harmony that are not imposed, as dogmas, but, in tune with the laws and nature of the greater creation which one learns by dogma-free observation.
The key "existentialist" questions, here, of all things observed or experienced (as of the lesson of the child with his or her toys) are "Is this way of living or going about things conducive to the happiness and well-being of both oneself and all with whom we are involved collectively? And is only individual or private family happiness/harmony possible, in isolation, or is it possible for the greater collective of all?"
At 26, I had not yet reached the stage of going beyond personal to general harmony (even though the two are inseparable all being interconnected & mutually dependent), but came to the basic conclusion (applicable to both) that, to paraphrase Buddhist teachings, one cannot have right feeling, thought and a action, without right life-style and right livelihood, hence my taking up an ecological career on the land. At first, I tried to formulate the "perfect plan or blue-print" to impose on lived reality: but while, on the whole, sounder and more harmonious, in body, soul, mind and spirit, this "blue print" came to grief on the unexpected reefs of our flawed humanity. In our microcosm, at one with Creation, by ensuring an inner peace, harmony and control, despite the distressing disharmony, conflict and suffering in so much of the world around us. The dream of a totally harmonious world for all remains to be fulfilled which is what has driven my dedication to the work of our Vision Quester News Agency since 1991 and our Universal Alliance since 1993.
I still continue to observe all things, situations and experiences, in a non-judgmental and reflective way, so as to see what further lessons and Wisdom can be learnt, expressed, often as philosophical poetry, (as guidance in place of all imposed, traditional dogmatic & authoritarian "systems", "isms" & "laws"), in ready response to whatever or whoever comes along and comes to pass, on the fundamental bases of the teachings of Jesus Christ in his Sermon on the Mount. I would suggest that this balance between "deliberate classical composition" (based on the Ancient Hellenic ideals of Harmony) and the flexible "play it by ear" Taoist jazz of ongoing lessons, observations of specific problem areas, is the best way forward to the success of "Peace from Harmony" world-wide for all humans & creation. one of our personal primary life-style pre-conditions for the harmony & spiritual peace we have created in the woodland wild flora & fauna sanctuary, here, is total non-violence towards all life-forms.
In conclusion, I think that my life way of the search of harmony in myself and in a world that has for me the key meaning, may be useful to other people, especially young humans during the transition era to a harmonious civilization.
The article basic postulates are expressed in the model-64 of tetranet harmonious thinking, proposed and developed in the ABC of Harmony:
David Allen Stringer, poet, painter & playwright, born August 1944 in the Northern Industrial town of Rotherham near Sheffield, educated at Woodhouse Grammar School, Sheffield, then Fowey Grammar School, Cornwall, UK. Following a 1960'/70's career as a jazz, blues, folk & rock singer/song-writer, became, finally, an organic horticulturalist and wild-flora and fauna ecologist & consultant/agricultural contractor/small farmer, now retired. A life-long networker.
Address: Sea Dragon 8 Place Road, Fowey, Cornwall PL23 1DR United Kingdom
Web: www.universalalliance.org.uk, www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=250
My Children's Perception of The ABC of Harmony
Early in 1999 my father published his first textbook of The ABC of Harmony under the intricate title "Sociology for Pragmatists" . Later on I understood why father chose this title at a time when ten-year "gangster" capitalism in Russia ended – he wanted it to be opposed by the practical harmonism of his tetrasociological theory.
I started to read this book, which he had presented to me with a touching inscription, when I was 15 years old and I didn't understand a thing in it – everything was so unusual in this textbook that was meant for the students of the universities where father was teaching at that time. Then, a year later, when he came to my school (academic year 2000/2001 – I was 16 years old) to teach social science by his textbook, I started to penetrate into its pages.
At this time the picture-image of the tetrasociological ABC in the form of a spherical planet covered with the ocean which I named "Pluralism" (see below) was born in my imagination. This ocean is a boundless primary space of social diversity (pluralism) as a source and ground for harmony. In fact, it is the firstborn ocean of social harmony which is impossible without the infinite pluralism of different waves, currents and winds. Four continents (spheres) of diversity as the eternal piers of harmony constantly concentrate, condense and crystallize in it. These integrated continents/spheres form four necessary and sufficient resources for any society: People, Information, Organization, Things (PIOT). They embody the largest and the most fundamental parts of the Social Ocean of diversity as a whole. Harmony of Social Ocean as a whole depends on their harmony.
Each of the PIOT-continents generates its end product as a resource for the consumption on all continents which distribute these resources among themselves and exchange them transporting them by ships. That's the only reason why each of the continents lives and prospers. It means that each of them feeds everyone with its product. It makes the stable foundation of eternal and universal social harmony, which was unknown before tetrasociology. When everyone cares about everyone else and feeds them with their own product – this is eternal love. It grows from harmony and is identical to it. The ocean of pluralism and harmony is the ocean of love in which evil comes only from ignorance of continents of harmony.
The ocean of diversity is located between poles of Spheral Informational-Statistic Technology (SIST) which provides the continents with the tools of practical achievement and maintenance of social harmony.
At the same time, in 2001, I drew this picture-image with my additional childish fantasies and presented it to father. He was delighted with it, he hung it up on the wall and put under the glass of his desk.
Of course, the deeper understanding of my drawing came to me later. And only now I understand that there was no other school where something of the kind would have been taught. In the mean time this ABC of harmony is so necessary for schools and universities! I think that in this context the first visual image of the ABC created by my childish sociological imagination gets special significance. Therefore, I'll attach that very picture that was drawn by me 10 years ago.
Now that 10 years have passed, I understand that having leant the four fundamental resources of society PIOT (defining role of which in tetrasociology is formulated in the ABC's axiom) I have not understood their indissoluble connection. I divided them into isolated continents. But actually none of these resources exists separately from others, which is now well illustrated by the "socionome" in The ABC. I began to understand this "higher algebra of harmony" later. At that time, on the level of its arithmetics, I couldn't concieve it along with the depth of the historical premises of The ABC and the power of its logic and social consequences discovered in it now.
Now I understand: this ABC of Harmony should be studied in schools along with the regular alphabet. It is essential for all the children of Earth because harmony and its ABC are global.
The main content of my article is expressed in tetranet thinking by initial model of four resources PIOT. This model is presented in the first cluster of The ABC of Harmony.
Andrey L. Semashko, 1984 born, high education, technician, married, daughter 5 years. St. Petersburg, Russia. E-mail: andrsemashko_at_yandex.ru
Ananta Kumar Giri
Introduction: Harmony and Disharmony. Harmony is part of life as there is an existence and yearning for harmony in self, society, Nature and Divine, which, at the same time, struggles with disharmony, chaos, disorder, disjunction and domination. As Semashko writes: "Harmony is inseparable from disharmony" [3, 50]. This is an important insight but little developed and attended with care by our co-travelers in Global Harmony Association whose euphoric enthusiasm for harmony is understandable but needs to be accompanied by critical thinking about the very terms of conversations such as harmony and disharmony. In Semashko and GHA, harmony is a positive value but he and all of us here do not always realize that both the discourse and social system of harmony can manifest and hide a condition of indignity, domination and annihilation of potential of self and society. In this context, Andre Beteille's reflections on "Harmonic and Disharmonic Social Systems" are helpful . While harmony is a positive value in the discourse of harmonious civilization, in Beteille's articulation of harmonic and disharmonic systems it is much more complicated:
A harmonic system is one in which there is consistency between the normative order and existential order: society is divided into groups which are placed high and low, and their ordering is considered as right, as part of the natural scheme of things. A disharmonic system by contrast shows a lack of consistency between the existential and normative orders: the norm of equality is contradicted by the inequality [132:54]
As examples of harmonic social systems, Beteille tells us about caste society in ancient and medieval India and feudal society in medieval Europe. In these societies and histories discourse and social organization of harmony manifested through hierarchy. For Beteille [132, 57], "The hierarchical order of traditional Indian society was embodied in the institution of caste which has had a commanding position in it for two thousand years." Beteille continues: "European civilization before modern times had also a hierarchical character, although the hierarchy was less complete, less elaborate and less stable in the Indian case." [132, 64]. In both Europe and India in such conditions, "There was harmony between the external conditions of life and socially accepted ideals of life" [132, 75]. Modernity with its discourse and pursuit of equality in place of hierarchy disrupted this harmony which, for Beteille, gave rise to disharmonic social systems. But the discourse and practice of equality did not and do not totally transform conditions of inequality and hierarchy. Beteille here draws our attention to class structure of modern Western societies. For Beteille, "Despite the idealization of equality, the class structure continues to be an important part of Western social reality, some would say its most important part. [..] only this structure is no longer a structure of privileges and disabilities, but one of unequal life chances"[132, 76].
But the harmony between the "external conditions of life and socially accepted ideals of life" was fractured and challenged in pre-modern world in both discourses and practices. Not only the so-called harmonic system was based upon disharmony but it was challenged by many movements and mobilizations in discourses and practices which later on gave birth to modernities in different parts of the world. While in ancient India social harmony in the name of caste hierarchy was challenged by Buddhism as well as Upanishadic movements, in medieval India this was challenged by Bhatki and Sufi movements. In medieval Europe hierarchy was also challenged by various socio-religious and socio-political movements. And in modern conditions of lack of fit between ideals of equality and pervasive fact of inequality which Beteille terms disharmonic there are also challenges to such conditions. There are various efforts to overcome the "crisis of class legitimation" in modern societies to which we must also add the crisis of gender and caste legitimation. At the same time, in these so-called disharmonic social systems, disharmony is not a priority value; rather it is order. Modern society and state, as much of modern social theory, is preoccupied with order which many a time, like earlier discourse of hierarchy, uses the language of harmony but is based upon social relations of disharmony in the way it perpetuates existing logic of state, class, caste, gender domination and annihilation of soul.
Thus construction of typologies of harmonic and disharmonic social systems is challenged with the above mentioned problems as the discourse of harmonious civilization is faced with the challenge of not taking disharmony seriously. No system is entirely harmonic or disharmonic as no civilization is entirely harmonious. Rather, it is helpful to talk of and explore harmonious streams in civilizations as harmonic and disharmonic dimensions in social systems. Harmony exists in many ways in the midst of and along with disharmonies of many kinds. Both harmonies and disharmonies are dynamic caused by both structural conditions such as social domination and conditions of self and soul such as readiness or lack of it for overcoming one's annihilating ego-centeredness and embracing the other. A social discourse of harmony perpetuates domination and inequality and kills both self and society.
Chitta Ranjan Das (1923–2011), a creative thinker and experimenter from India, calls this demonic harmony . Demonic harmony believes in easy and uncontested conformity from members because society as well as individuals treat each other as demons. It does not believe that either of them has a conscience. This is close to conventional harmony in society where to live in harmony is to live within the lines and limits drawn by society. Building upon Sri Aurobindo, Das characterizes such harmony as "typal-conventional" which is in need of post-conventional critique, interrogation and transformations, to put it in the words of Jurgen Habermas . In this context, we need to realize harmony of a different kind as transformative one.
Transformative harmony transforms the status quo and domineering legitimation of harmony and struggles for transformation of self, society and the world. For Das, this is a harmony arising out of critiques and movements: "harmony in movements and establishment of harmony in movements… Continuous climbing is the movement and is the mediating law of harmony" [133, 153]. Das calls this spiritual harmony.
Transformative harmony is not based upon an absolute distinction between harmony and disharmony as it realizes that there is need for moves to disturb existing harmony of domination which may be perceived as disharmonic. Transformative harmony can build on the perspective of dynamic harmony presented by Robert Bellah . It is the work of "harmony in tension" . But in many discourses of harmony, such views of dynamic harmony and harmony in tension may not be attended to cultivated. Confucianism also speaks about harmony but many a time in history this has been used to legitimize domination rather than seeking a life of beauty, dignity and dialogue for all. Contemporary Chinese Government also talks about harmonious development as its official goal but this challenges us to think about it critically and transformationally and ask the question whether it is a vision and practice of transformative harmony. Such a critical interrogation is missing in Semashko and GHA's celebration of the official declaration of harmony by the Governments of China, Singapore and etc.
Transformative Harmony: Compassion and Confrontation. Transformative harmony involves both compassion and confrontation. Compassion means to share in the suffering and joy of others. It is only with compassion – with sharing in joys and suffering of and with others – that we can realize transformative harmony. Confrontation means to challenge and transform parts of self and society which do not help us to blossom and realize our potential. It can be violent as well as non-violent. Human histories and societies have gone through both violent and non-violent confrontations; Gandhi and Martin Luther King being the inspiring exemplars of non-violent confrontation in our recent past. Their confrontation was not only non-violent but also compassionate as they sought to understand the oppressors and systems of oppression compassionately. Compassionate conformation is an epochal evolutionary challenge now. Transformative harmony is accompanied by the work of compassionate confrontation. The key ideas in this article are expressed in the model-65:
Ananta Kumar Giri, PhD in sociology. He is with the Madras Institute of Development Studies, Chennai, India. GHA Vice-President on sociology.
E-mail: aumkrishna_at_yahoo.com, aumkrishna_at_gmail.com
Web: www.mids.ac.in/ananta.htm, www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=26
Leo Semashko's comment. Unfortunately, the criticism of harmonious systems in author and Beteille's form is devoid of any scientific test: caste, class antagonism and the crimes are estimated as harmony. on what basis? Using the language of harmony in the disharmonious systems also does not make them harmonious and that language is no responsibility for the crimes of disharmony. Therefore, the accusations of harmony in crimes are baseless. They are born of ignorance of its deep structure. on this basis, we also emphasized the limitations of Chinese harmony, its dynamism and evolution. But we share the idea of transformative harmony as a compassionate confrontation, although it requires a lot of research.