intro’d to Nora here (via John Kellden share):
talking zoom dance ness.. and talking literal dance..
7 min – it’s hard for all of us to hold this conceptual model in mind….my father was good at it.. when he looked at something he saw it in terms of the relationships.. the patterns it was in.. most of us are battling the labels/compartments/et al – we have been trained to do..
8 min – on the question of subjectivity… ie: how do you describe a living system… how do you incorporate the complexity/expectations..
10 min – i tried to do that with gregory… but he’s not here to defend himself.. if he were .. he’d be saying.. don’t box me in.. don’t make me linear.. don’t complete me… because that in fact is death…
not who is gregory bateson.. but who is my gregory bateson.. because that’s the only one i can give you..
what it is to be subjective in a complex system..
what do we have if we don’t have subjectivity
11 min – showing trailer
he was always learning.. from him i learned that learning never stops
challenged us to rethink/stand back and try to perceive in a diff way.. to see how reality is actually happening..
he was interested in larger problems…
the major problems in the world are the result of the diff between how nature works and how people think.. what does it even mean to change the way people think..
he asked the question – what is it about our way of perceiving that makes us not see the delicate interdependencies in an ecological system.. that give it its integrity.. we don’t see them and therefore we break them – m c bateson (sister)
14 min – i hope it may have done something to set you free from thinking in material/logical terms.. when you are thinking about living things..
how do we think about living things..
daughter of gregory bateson
an ecology of mind site
international bateson institute site:
systemic leadership institute site:
Her work asks the question “How we can improve our perception of the complexity we live within, so we may improve our interaction with the world?”.
fb share by Jon:
Nora Bateson on globalization and our continuing predicament:
“”The entire system from education to medical– From business to media, from military to agriculture is entirely baked in.
I have lost faith in just about every human system. Nature remains as the only honest voice…and she’s screaming.
The clock is ticking and still most people just assume that tomorrow will be like today.””
liminal leadership – nov 2017
liminality et al
This kind of leadership cannot be found in individuals; rather, it is found between them. It cannot be found in organizations, nations, religions, or institutions; rather, it is found between them. I have called it Liminal Leadership to highlight these relational characteristics.
Inter-systemic change is at hand. More than change and more than system change, the interdependency between systems of economy, health, politics, ecology, and communication is where the change lies. This is a murky territory of alive in-betweenness.
Needs—like to breathe, eat, love, and make community—are arguably impossible to change, whereas rethinking the structure of society is merely extremely difficult.
Competing for ideas on collaboration is a perfect illustration of why so much change-making today is riddled with toxic fumes of the last century’s hero-envy.
The future lies in the capacity to understand and respond to interdependency..t
So many lines have been drawn between clusters of people now that it is difficult to keep track..t
I am not sure what humanity has hidden in our inner wilderness. I am willing to hold the door open because the alternative is just too dark.
Remember the Nazis at Nuremberg who said, “I was just doing my job.”
This interdependency is what gives every living system its vitality. It is the most ubiquitous experience of every living organism. And yet, it is not mentioned in the UN or the constitution. It does not have a Wikipedia page. It remains, it obtains, and it continues, regardless of not being recognized. The interdepending keeps interdepending just out of our hearing range, just out of our color spectra, just beyond the horizon of our logic.
Making sense is sensorial. Increasing sensitivity is necessary to find new ways through old patterns..t
not yet scrambled ness
Years, decades, and more than a century have passed in which brilliant minds with breaking hearts have tried to create change in the institutions that frame our lives. They tried incrementally changing the system from within. They tried using the legal system to change the laws. They tried becoming politicians, teachers, doctors… but the institutions did not budge. The multifaceted crises the world faces today are proof enough that the establishment is not built to question itself. The pillars of civilization are pinned under the stone slab of the last several centuries of assumptions. Pillars of politics and money, of education and medicine, of psychology and religion. Structure is hard, and hard to change.
I wanted to think that there was a possibility of incremental change, even a little, and that democracy, even though it is not perfect, would be able to improve with the hard work and sparkling minds that have walked through the past decades. However, increasingly, I am seeing that a refocus is needed..t
begs a means 7bn can leap to a nother way
Some patterns don’t change easily, and their unraveling is an incoherent phase on the way to new sense-making. I see confusion as an important theme of 2018. Confusion & care-giving: these are openings to mutual learning, (symmathesy).
I want to honor those already in the throes. Many people are breaking now, emotionally, physically, financially, ecologically and culturally. Like canaries in a coal mine, they are showing us the dis-integration of our current systems.
The pain is systemic, making it hard to identify, and to treat with any singular causality or strategy. Nothing fits in the boxes anymore. Those of us that are pulled from our daily tasks to tend to this pain are syncing to another rhythm. Leaving the pattern of 5 year plans and career development is what must be done to nurture, and to mourn, to revive and to reconstruct. The alternative is inhumane. My father used to ask: “What makes a civilization worth saving?”
In coming decades no one will care how much money or fame or bitcoin or social media contacts any of us had… the only thing that will matter is how willing we have been to learn.
Peter Vander Auwera (@petervan) tweeted at 5:58 AM – 3 Jun 2018 :
I’m #reading Small Arcs of Larger Circles by Nora Bateson https://t.co/kDUGU87E1z (http://twitter.com/petervan/status/1003244618492862464?s=17)
poems.. essays.. published 2016
To achieve change, Nora Bateson reminds us that the systems we are seeking to change are not just the sum of their parts but the “parts” are alive, interconnected, co-evolving, and mutually learning new ways to interact in changing contexts https://t.co/PS4h9bHvci
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/jhagel/status/1003599281998028800
“It might be that we are navigating with the wrong map,” Bateson suggests. “There is no language to define the spiraling processes of the vast context we are participants in. We do not have names for the patterns of interdependency.”
Understanding living systems, suggests Bateson, begs for a new language that transcends even our ideas about a “circle” or “web of life.” We are not beads on a string or nodes in a net. We are fully integrated, constantly changing, forever learning, living entities with permeable boundaries.
idio-jargon as language
We are vitae with infinite possibilities of interaction, not parts with functions.For larger living systems, comprised of those interacting vitae, she proposes the word “symmathesy,” from the Greek sym (together) and mathesi (to learn). A forest or a human society is not hard-wired. These are living processes, in which the participants are mutually learning.
Warm data, Bateson explains, is information about relationships.
let’s try self-talk as data..
Physical change, for example – even at a celestial, ecosystem, cellular, atomic, or social level – may involve resonance; the response of one physical part of a system to oscillations or vibrations in another part. However, resonance is not a “thing” that exists in space; resonance implies a relationship.
This is where imagination becomes as important as rigorous science or politics. The creative arts serve as a metaphor for social change because art is not about an explanation, but about play, feeling, and relationships. “Art is relationship,” Bateson observes. Art is where we learn about grace, contradiction, and about the integration of apparent opposites. Art is about pattern.
When a society or an ecosystem change, what changes is not the “parts” but the patterns among the living participants. Understanding ecology is not like understanding how a clock or an algorithm work. Ecology takes us into the realms of shifting patterns, living communication, symbiosis, and mutual learning.
suggested to library for purchase
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 2:16 AM on Sun, Jun 10, 2018:
Here is a little film made about a session I did at Harvard with Gail Taylor and Patricia Shaw on Emergence. They do a nice job of discussing Warm Data & Symmathesy! #WarmData #symmathesy #complexity #emergence
5 min video
self org.. w/o a plan
even when we recognize self org.. our thinking often jumps to how we might control what emerges.. entails of letting go of pre conceived solutoins
hard to grasp the loopiness of emergence
ie: me is composed of not me
when things we like spontaneously sprout up we might call it serendipity in hindsight but in moment we often suppress deviations from the norm before it’s even possible to guess the nature of what is germinating
symmathesy: a living system that forms by contextual mutual learning thru interaction.. can we symmathesize..?
ie: we could convene people that otherwise wouldn’t interact.. use processes that surface many voices..t… and craft spaces..
gathering in a space
zooming in and out.. can help us suspend our pre conceived solutions making it easier to follow the thread of what is unfolding..
a radical rethinking of causality.. .. embracing the messiness of complexity w a sense of curiosity spontaneity and play.. in other words.. engaging emergence..
It takes complexity to perceive complexity.This is what I am working with right now. That means more than one texture of language, & multiple forms of expression describing entirely different contexts of complexity are necessary. Flat monotone jargon is not enough. #WarmData https://t.co/yM4Lem6ci4
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1007983350563397632
perhaps not only is flat monotone jargon not enough.. perhaps it’s getting in the way.. imagine if we let go enough.. to not have to keep universally defining things.. (so many saying we need a new language/verbiage.. ie: symmathesy .. which ends up meaning.. that we defn more words and then think we have to train/teach those words into others.. et al) but maybe what we really need is letting 7bn daily idio-jargons.. be the new (non)language.. to get to the energy we need most (7bn alive people)..simple enough..
@NoraBateson i think it takes simplicity to transcend complexity .. the simple unity of consciousness, the simple unity of nature .. complexity is an aberration of intellect, simplicity is the wisdom of unity
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/gregorylent/status/1007984861938761729
perhaps in an undisturbed ecosystem.. complexity and simplicity are one in the same
@monk51295 @gregorylent the opposite of complexity is reductionism… not simplicity. :-)
simplicity is complexity with grace.
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1007996728388341760
complexity w grace.. sounds like an undisturbed ecosystem..
@gregorylent @monk51295 I would say complexity is another word for life. It is the ‘being’ processes of several variables in relationship, and interdependency form contexts. Responding to responses to responses…
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1008701755713114113
so the grace.. (letting go ness ie:undisturbed ecosystem).. to trust the being..
@gregorylent @monk51295 haha… well for me it is an adventure into the many multitudes of differences interacting. That is why i say that complexity and simplicity are the same… but redutionism… now that’s a problem. When contexts are broken that which gave them life is obscured.
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1008732132242534400
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 3:04 PM on Tue, Jun 19, 2018:
The #BBCClickRadio program today did a great little segment on #WarmData — and on the use of it to address #immigration less binary description and more complexity. I am so pleased. @GBoddington and @GarethM Thank you! Perfect! here is more on Warm Data: https://t.co/w20o8khWOc
Warm Data” can be defined as: Transcontextual information about the interrelationships that integrate a complex system.
I was not clear what it was yet, I was only certain of one thing: that a new kind of information was needed to balance the information produced by research that decontextualized its subjects of inquiry. In short, the way in which we make sense of the world has everything to do with the way we behave in it, so I saw a need for another sense-making as a necessary component of shifting behavior. Five years later the International Bateson Institute is now utilizing “Warm Data” in our research and findings on addiction, how systems learn, health and ecology.
self-talk as data
How has it come to this? And how can new patterns of interaction in our societies be encouraged to emerge?
The observer matters, and teams of observers matter. Since data are always derived through the particular lens of the researchers, descriptions of their filters of perception are vital information and must not be sterilized out of findings.
actually.. what matters more is that we get the whales out of sea world..
Nora responds to someone on twitter asking about warm data:
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 1:24 PM on Sat, Aug 04, 2018:
Here you go… enjoy! https://t.co/w20o8khWOc https://t.co/5iV4A1uZ5s
on entropy ness from small arcs of larger circles
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 11:07 PM on Mon, Jun 25, 2018:
Thank you. https://t.co/7OsWaiBS8v
“Mutual learning happens in the entropy; we need the confusion to release the new.”
@NoraBateson #sustainability #leadership
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 4:34 AM – 14 Jul 2018 :
It may turn out to be much easier to work on systems change than to try and separate each crisis into a silo of responses. Complex interdependence is a cental characteristic of all of the critical issues we face now. #food #climate #WealthGap #Refugees #exploitation #Mindset (http://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1018081212366295041?s=17)
indeed.. begs we go deep enough
beyond words ness
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 5:59 AM on Fri, Jul 27, 2018:
Possibilities of communication are limited by context. Communication therefore is not what is or is not said. Rather, it is what is possible to say. The vitriol that has become normal is a violence to the context of public communication. Speak to mutual learning & dignity. #meta
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 4:32 AM – 7 Aug 2018 :
“All the world is a stage.”
Change the play.
#systemschange #WarmData #climatechange #ecology #symmathesy #art (http://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1026778157842616320?s=17)
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 6:13 AM on Mon, Nov 05, 2018:
The distraction of fighting for the meager leftovers after the wealthy corporate robbery of life, future, human rights and ecology while trillions in off shore accounts could be used for building a new way of life: #Refugees #permaculture #ecology #education #health #cleanenergy
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 3:48 PM – 31 Oct 2018 :
May each person be seen in their complexity. Reductionsim isn’t useful for discussing people. This is a great act of revolutionary love, to allow yourself and others to be complex. It is very simple really. #complexity #identity #transcontextuality (http://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1057751252518481920?s=17)
on fb thread michel posted about jp nora closes a comment with:
The question for me is not how to go backward… but how to be in relationship to each other and our planet and not fall prey to the old scripts of exploitation.
yeah.. we’ve got to get the whales out of sea world first..
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 2:15 PM on Fri, Jan 04, 2019:
The thing about systems-change is that it’s: deeper, messier, more indirect, more interdependent, more invisible, more surprising, more beautiful, more painful, more difficult, *but simultaneously easier than is predictable. Let me repeat that it is indirect. #complexity #culture
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 6:23 AM – 27 Feb 2019 :
Here is the film the quote is from. https://t.co/hEetEcQ7Q6https://t.co/4nbxIG2LJW (http://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1100748359462150144?s=17)
what languages are you fluent in
3 min – the thing is.. we do measure people and in doing so.. erase them..t
what is it in the world that has not been described/perceived.. what tenderness has been invisible that now the common sense is aching for.. are there new textures of being yet unfound
6 min – that is where art lives.. in the possible
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 7:45 AM on Sat, Jun 15, 2019:
For those working toward addressing the collection of crises in today’s world such as: climate, racism, wealth gap, mental & physical health, justice, species decline.A shift in approach to research & discourse is needed to reflect the deep entanglement of all of these issues.
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 4:04 AM on Mon, Jun 17, 2019:
It may be tempting to measure happiness… But measuring becomes managing which contribute to the conditions of control that produce unhappiness, anxiety, anger, & depression. Is there something real to be tended that is safely outside the reach of measurement? Please. #WarmData
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 6:08 AM – 27 Jun 2019 :
2. And all of this requires a cultural epistemological shift to a kind of living that is premised upon interdependence to each other and the biosphere. It’s not really about making rules,they will just be broken. It’s about wanting something different, non material, non monetary. (http://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1144215881821622272?s=17)
mufleh humanity law: we have seen advances in every aspect of our lives except our humanity– Luma Mufleh
Culture that celebrates the cunning & cleverness of people who win at being predators shouldn’t be surprised they occupy pinnacle positions.Justifying exploitation as normal or necessary was a dead-end game.The future is in the integrity of recognizing interdepedence. #GameB
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1173121694879404032
George Pór (@technoshaman) tweeted at 1:45 AM on Tue, Oct 01, 2019:
@NoraBateson, in response @jhagel’s tweet, could this be a good “warm data” question:
What can education/workplaces be, in a changing world, which wouldn’t destroy the creative genius of the child within each of us? https://t.co/hp9C8F4HRq
@jhagel: Our natural creative genius is stifled from the time we are born, but especially once we go to school. We need to find the five-year old within us again. That capability that we as a five-year-old possessed, never goes away bit.ly/2E2gSSG
ie: cure ios city
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 9:45 PM on Thu, Oct 10, 2019:
The time it takes for change to occur can be quick, and the time it takes for the condions of change to ripen & become ready is a variable. It’s X + 1 minute. You just never know where you are in the time line of X. Sometimes it’s closer than you think. #complexity #SystemChange
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 2:49 AM on Tue, Oct 15, 2019:
Beyond the boundaries, separations, and compartments there is a vista from which the interdependency of life is more vital than the drill down on fragmentations. Zooming in and out simulateously… Context heals.
I want to first make sure people are covered, cared for and know they are not forgotten. Then take out the businesses that are destroying the planet, with working people on board. In the meantime it’s probs best to pack up the CEOs and 1% to their luxe Mars adventure asap.
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1186937922483838976
but we need all of us.. no?
begs a means (tech as it could be) to listen to (aka: free) everyone at the same time
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 11:54 PM on Thu, Oct 24, 2019:
This era is one in which old structures are essentially liquifying. As political ideas, socio-economic forms, gender assumptions & cultural habits turn to goo, the impulse is to put new structures in place.But this is not that moment, this is the liquid liminal time. Solids melt.
@clayforsberg: We must evolve from a culture of static planning and structural reliance to one of learning to appreciate the messiness of uncertainty and contextual interconnectedness. Our mission can’t be control – but rather the nurture of ever-changing relationships.
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 4:13 AM on Sun, Oct 27, 2019:
Catching new light,finding new gestures,fumbling into senses yet unmade. One small rip in the matrix at a time– & some sudden big rips– buzzing doorbells of learning. Unexpected arrivals connect new patterns–sizzle the frame. #sensemaking #SystemChange #WarmData #symmathesy
idio-jargon et al
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 1:30 AM on Tue, Dec 10, 2019:
Here the thing about system change: relationships are upstream of structures. If the structures are changed before the relationships change – – the pull of relational habit will morph structural change to serve those relational processes. #WarmDataLab
unless we have a means to leap and detox simultaneously.. (assuming the relational habits that would pull against the infra are habits of ie: whales in sea world.. that we’re wanting to detox)
@NoraBateson: If you think of structure as a consequence of relationship you are thinking like co-evolution. If you think of relationship as, a consequence of stru ture you are more in mechanistic, industrial thinking. It works for machines but not culture.
would also work for whales in sea world..
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 3:29 AM on Sun, Dec 15, 2019:
What would you really want someone to promise you?
True love forever? No.
Ever increasing wealth & comfort? No.
Those rigid promises require compromising other contexts of life.
-that they would respond to life’s twists & turns with all of the integrity they could muster. Yes.
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 6:03 AM – 20 Dec 2019 :
Time brings a way through the impossible
But it oozes, slimey
By the twisty
The tangents, detours,
The curly pockets of crud and life.
“Hindsight” by Nora Bateson https://t.co/8ERNVfE9p8 (http://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1208010131100749824?s=17)
1 min read – poem
The clear path is itself a warning.
— trimmed and tucked by Procrustian impulses of industrial habit.
Weird dreams, untidied
sing the airy maps
So they will not be found …
By the ones looking for management.
And numbers will mock their lovers.. t
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 11:50 AM on Wed, Jan 01, 2020:
New Years reflections…
#complexity #sensemaking #future
“Hindsight is 20/20” by Nora Bateson https://t.co/Gex0riCahE
I have benefitted from the exploitation of others and the natural world. Sick but true. There is nothing to gain by justifying or denying that fact. My comfort has been made possible by the suffering of others. There are generations of pain, trauma, and confusion that have been produced by the systems that give me my food, clothing, transportation, banking, and everything else in my world. No point in pretending that is not true. Even though my family has been advocating for the interdependency of life across many fields for at least three generations, I am still dressed in blood.
One thing I am starting to get the hang of is igniting suspicion toward those impulsive solutions that appear at first to make the most logical and rational sense, recognizing that they are probably informed by the same systems that created the problems to begin with.
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 1:31 AM on Fri, Jan 17, 2020:
The funding world is a mess. It needs a complete restructure to deal w complex problems facing communities now. Focus is misplaced on KPIs & impact metrics instead of social connective tissue. Dangling small pots of money in front of fragmennted communities makes angry rivalry.
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 3:29 PM on Fri, Mar 06, 2020:
If changemaking is for the changemakers is anything changing?Who are the conferences for? Who are the books for? Who are the tweets for?You already know I am w you.I am most useful now when I go where the lingo is jargon free, where people arent trying to pull swords from stones.
idio-jargon.. as jargon approaching the limit of infinity.. as jargon free
equitable access to communication.. et al
Word to consider:
A tiny little concept that unravels the fragility of the entire socio-cultural-economics of the last century (and those before).
What is essential?
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1239614443203543040
maté basic needs: authenticity and attachment
let’s re\set around that
A lot of imagination & swift systemic thinking is needed now.The issue isn’t just the virus -it’s the virus landing in a stew of fragile systems: health economy, education, politics, culture, tech. Current institutions cant hold.
No one will develop immunity to systems crash.
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/NoraBateson/status/1239841878004117505
nora bateson (@NoraBateson) tweeted at 2:48 AM on Fri, Mar 20, 2020:
Education is stalled, & there is a moment to make significant inputs into the possibilities of education for the future. Every move now matters. Rapid systems change is on. Every small move is part of every long term possibility.
I published this piece in September 2018 in the World Academy of Arts and Sciences Journal special issue on education. As we enter this confusing moment of Covid-19 isolation and systems change, it seems to me to be a moment to rethink most of the ossified patterns of the last centuries, and break free. Education is certainly at the core of this change. This is a long read, but maybe you have time…
Starting Monday March 23rd, will be doing a series of calls online for parents interested in mutual learning with their kids in discovery of complexity…Since the schools are closed anyway, we might as well completely rethink what education can be.
Putting the world back together now from the fragmented, decontextualized and silo-ed bits it has been broken into is a challenge that rests on the possibility of intergenerational collaborative exploration. To form and find interconnections will require humility and a new kind of attention to interdependent processes in complex systems. New sensitivity will be needed, new perception, new language, new ideas.
ai humanity needs: augmenting interconnectedness
To discuss changes in the education system so that it might better serve the citizens of tomorrow is to discuss system change across multiple sectors, nothing else will do.. The generations need each other, if there is any hope at all it is the relationship between generations, cultures, classes, and even species.
Education change is system change.
if equity is everyone getting a go every day.. redefining public education becomes revolution of everyday life.. aka: global equity
adding page here: nora on ed change