Damn! Pregnant again!
IDEAS IN EMBRYO
It is the purpose of this page to provide a forum to present, discuss and invite comments about a specific matter of interest to the Center for the Study of Democratic Societies at the time. This specific matter may frequently involve some aspect of Socioeconomic Democracy not sufficiently, or perhaps not yet at all, explored. Occasionally, this page will be employed to invite consideration by the reader of the impact of SeD on some particularly noxious societal problem currently occupying the "top-of-the-hour," "above-the-fold," not to mention "buried on page 19," space in the media. At other times, invitation will be extended to share with all of us some of the readers' thoughts on more promising and positive futures for humanity resulting from the realized potentials of SeD. It is hoped this process will encourage independent thought about and contributions to the further understanding of the ramifications and potentials of SeD. Both "participants" and "lurkers" are welcome to this, as all other, pages at the website of the Center for the Study of Democratic Societies.
The discussions and insights appearing in Ideas in Embryo are intended to help focus attention on some particular matter. This is as opposed to the other page, CC&C, which is open to any and all reasonable subjects related to SeD which are of particular interest to, and are suggested by, the particular reader. Employing Rush's distinctions used on the Excellence in Broadcasting Network, CC&C is like "Open Line Friday!", where the caller gets to pick the subject of discussion, while Ideas in Embryo is much more like Monday thru Thursday, when Rush picks the subjects to be discussed.
Comments regarding the subject(s) of the moment featured on the Ideas in Embryo page may, and can only, be submitted by e-mail. No attached files toe-mails, nor even e-mails with attached files, will be opened. As with the CC&C page, so in this IDEAS IN EMBRYO page, conciseness of comments (as well as civility and lack of rhetorical rendition) will be appreciated and rewarded with increased probability of publication. Contributions to be published will be chosen for their educational and amusement value as well as for general interest. The name and e-mail address of the author of the submitted comments must accompany and will be published with the comments. On this particular page, it is anticipated that responses by the "Management" to the chosen incoming comments will in general be kept to a minimum, though occasional uncontrolled squeals of delight and expressions such as "Of course; Absolutely; I wish I'd have thought of that!" will, no doubt, from time to time, emerge.
Finally, this particular editor is aware of no legitimate reason why a collection of the more articulate, groundbreaking, insightful -- and amusing -- comments on any particular subject considered here at Ideas in Embryo, perhaps later somewhat expanded and developed, could not and should not ultimately be published as informative and well received articles and books exploring and mapping various virgin territories. It is emphasized that comments from all who can read a 20-word sentence, with punctuation, without becoming confused are welcome to submit their ideas. It is the value of the comment, not the credentials of the commenter, that will be honored here. Actually, since SeD is just now being introduced to the planet and (almost) everyone has never heard of it as yet, there are no presently established "credentials" -- or credentialed people -- vis a vis SeD, so that willingness to think seriously about something not yet physically existing, coupled with clarity of thought and articulation would appear to be the only prerequisites to persuasiveness.
The Subject of this inaugural Ideas In Embryo is the interaction between and the impact of Socioeconomic Democracy on human psychology and vice versa. Put another way, what would/might be the coevolutionary developmental trajectories of SeD and human psychology, or, more importantly, SeD and the nature of human nature?
It has elsewhere been suggested that practically the totality of human activity and attitude will in some positive manner be impacted by SeD. One might therefore assume that psychology will be significantly impacted, and in fact fundamentally transformed, at least to the extent of expanding to contain and explain far more fully and fundamentally the psychology of the healthy half of human nature -- not necessarily in spite of though perhaps necessarily because of the present plight of the people of the planet.
The arena for discussion will be inclusively established; SeD's impact on all major aspects of human psychology is welcome and sought. This would include, but not be limited to, areas of spiritual, theoretical, analytical, clinical, educational and experimental psychology and multidisciplinary areas such as social psychology, political psychology, economic psychology, etc., as well as all the psychotherapeutic professions from Freud to the burgeoning new (and ancient) Energy Psychotherapy and Energy Psychology. Strictly as a few benchmarks along one of numerous promising veins to explore, the ideas of Ruth Benedict regarding the necessary design of societal synergy, Erich Fromm's thoughts on the "Psychological Aspects of the Guaranteed Income," Charles Hampden-Turner's pioneering and not yet fully appreciated Radical Man: The Process of Psycho-Social Development, Abraham Maslow's Toward a Psychology of Being and Harvey Mindess' Laughter and Liberation, a simultaneously humorous, serious and informative exeption of the crucial inextricable intertwining of humor and enlightenment, are suggested.
Of course, many of the important psychological implications of SeD are implicit and everywhere to be found in the discussion of SeD on this site and in all our writing. The changed economic incentives and hence behavioral changes (assuming neoclassical conceits) resulting from each of the two democratically decided economic boundaries of SeD will be experienced more or less by all participants of the democratic society (depending upon the particular democratically established socioeconomic system parameter settings). The numerous effects will be simultaneously everywhere and multidimensional.
On the other hand, there is little explicit discussion of human psychology, obviously an important and indeed crucial matter, in this writer's description of SeD so far. An initial and very limited forage in this direction is presented as one of many justifications for SeD contained in chapter 6 of our (still forthcoming) book. Nevertheless, systematic thinking about the full implications of an SeD-encouraged evolution in human psychology -- especially its relatively unexplored and underdeveloped healthy half -- remains to be performed.
Only for example, consider Depression, a most useful and productive concept. Could it be that, as Thoreau essentially responded to Emerson: "Why are you not in jail?", so a healthy human psychology might, after surveying the current human condition, logically ask humanity: "Why are your not depressed?" Could there be any sense in which a healthy human psychology, individually and societally, might naturally and beneficially become healthily "depressed" when becoming aware of what humanity has done and continues to do? Of course, the response to this "depression" could be basically either healthy (work to resolve the cause(s) of the problem(s) creating the depression) or unhealthy (ignore, not resolve, the causes of depression and watch the problem grow). While a shortage of Serotonin and receptor sites may help explain "unhealthy" depression, could the state of society and reaction to its shortcomings help explain "healthy depression"? The multidimensional impact of SeD on conventional, classical, "unhealthy" depression certainly should also be examined.
This "healthy depression" can lead to inter alia creative depressed genius. But for the majority of mankind, and going in a different direction, it leads to consideration of effective, lasting and relative inexpensive psychotherapeutic procedures and protocols to reduce the action-inhibiting trauma and resultant depression that can be experienced when individuals and societies become increasingly aware, for the first time, of the extent of the human horror and chaos -- be it from natural or more frequently man-made disasters. It would appear that Energy Psychotherapy might be able to make a major contribution here. But Depression is only one of many possible productive paths to follow through the thicket toward a healthy human psychology. The relationship of all this to SeD is here assumed obvious -- or an assigned homework problem.
While all insightful comment and description of the impact of SeD on human psychology is sought with this inaugural subject, it is also acknowledged that the psychology of one specific demographic group is of particular interest at the moment. That is, we are particularly interested in the evolving psychology of the newly and already far more healthily aging citizens of (some) societies. The reasons for this interest include the fact that these people (say, somewhat arbitrarily, fifty-five years and older) compose the last generation of people who will in general not live out most of their lives benefiting from some form of Socioeconomic Democracy. Nevertheless, they will be a large part of the generation which first establishes some form of SeD. Further, the relatively rapidly increasing proportion and absolute numbers of people entering this physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually active aging process guarantees that the transitional wave will be sizeable. It will also be wired -- or unwired, as technology develops. The numerous and major psychological transformations to be experienced by this large and thoughtful group of society, as it creates and lives through the realization of a democratic socioeconomic system, should provide much rich insight into inter alia increasing human consciousness in general and healthy human psychology in particular.
It is suspected that sexual attitudes and activities, both in general and specifically within the growing actively aging group, will evolve somewhat, if only as a result of all the other positive ramifications of SeD manifesting themselves. (One obvious and immediate ramification of SeD is the elimination of, or at least dramatic decrease in, the occurrence or possibility of involuntary prostitution, child or adult, female or male, legal or illegal.) Considering that sex is ubiquitous and everywhere profitable, and sexual attitudes, appropriate limits and boundaries of behavior are no longer clear to either the professional or the layperson but sometimes appear to be as fluid as the latest fad or popular psychological TV sitcoms centrally or significantly focusing on the celebration of all kinds of fun and inviting sexual activity, with, without or independent of other extended commitment, with varying numbers of pleasuring and pleasured participants and all possible combinations and permutations of gender, sexual preference(s), age, race, profession and socioeconomic status, it is clear that modern society is deeply, if so far only partially successfully, searching for a more satisfying and fulfilling sexuality. Society appears surrounded by a Smorgasbord of Sex. The choices are so confusing. Obsessed by this all-surrounding, screaming, streaming, steaming, sophisticated, subtle, smack-in-your-face, silly, safe, secret, sequential, simultaneous, scholarly as well as sacrilegious, spiritual and sacred sex, some individuals of society struggle with what really to think, want or do, while others think, want or do seemingly anything. At a minimum, profoundly important unresolved issues about human sexuality obviously remain. To this may be added any revolutionary effects on the future of human sexuality caused by a progressive politicosocioeconomic system. What might be the direct and indirect implications and ramifications of SeD specifically for the healthy evolution of a healthy human psychology of a healthy human sexuality?
Come share with everyone your well conceived Ideas in Embryo.
Coming soon, so start thinking!