SYNERGETICS:

PLAYING BALL WITH A BUTTERFLY

Desk-top here. Two volumes of Synergetics by R. Buckminster Fuller, my American Heritage dictionary, my typewriter, and my Sony Walkman blaring radio programs into my brain. The FM radio programs are octaphase unzippings of narrative lines which I am able to appreciate when I can differentiate the operative polarities that make the local equatorial peregrinations a systematic unfoldment teaching about what, in pure principle, is the outcome when principled oppositions give rise to human consciousness getting “all out of order” event beads stringing in for brain processing. “We have a story to tell you” the event beads whisper. “We come from far far away, from a galaxy matrix of long ago happenings.” I either settle back for a satisfying and principled Star Wars scenario, or I change channels.

Dr. Fuller would wonder about his readership. He worried about disconnection. Kids won’t read the stuff because, sure, it is thick with principled accountings of “what’s next” given opposing line-ups like you wouldn’t believe. But kids are more interested in sports. Wavilinear corkscrewing of forward moving “pigskin” (an octahedron with a precessed internal member launched for between-systems energy quantum transfer), spherics with yin/yang stitching profiles, touching bases, things like that. A baseball seen from the side looks like a Chinese yin/yang circle. What happens when all American gamesmanship encounters ancient Chinese language games? Synergy, of course.

Separately islanded systems in a tensive medium precess one another. A spinning system does not have to yield ground at 90 degrees by simply “falling in” as when meteors give up the ghost and crash into the Earth’s atmosphere, heating to umpteen degrees, evaporating to become atmosphere. Large spinning axials, when tugged at, tend to yield in some sideways direction. A gyroscope tilts in a plane perpendicular to the line of force. This sidewise yielding is what humans need to learn about when they set out to operationally produce wealth in their local energy harvesting units. Simple tugging does not necessarily yield simple results. All systems are interprecessing. No straight lines. Everything is affected by everything else. Things are normally in motion, accelerating, always.

People want to know: what’s it like to “fall in” to Synergetics? What’s it like in here, looking out through a matrix of criss-crossings, how does it affect my outlook? What do you gain by such a religious, even fanatic, devotion to polyhedrons, glass marbles in closest packing, models of paper, wood, thread? You. I. We relate with systems between us. Yours. Mine. You at your desk. Me at mine. Passing notes. Scribbles. Jungle up front. Sees us from her desk. Loves us both. Strict though. Wouldn’t you say? Jungle boy to Jungle girl. A telegraph. African drums. What does it all mean?

Heartless icosahedrons are lonely islanded stones shedding dragon tears like clock-work. Pure systems thinking has trapped lovable animals inside to create a sorry sad zoo. Cages. In between, the outside of all the insides. Does a liberator walk there, freeing one and then another? Or is the whole scene a silent one, with most creatures not even aware of the prisons, content as they are to exercise their reflexes omni-engaged by reflecting reflections on the 20 in-facing mirrors. These are electronic brains separated by a medium that may actually resist their presence. The zoo creatures were delivered to the wrong planet by mistake. Could happen. No one wants you here. But no escape either. No “outside” to this particular classroom that is a cold and heartless and strangely sinister planet.

In Synergetics, our caged animals are allowed to kiss. The icosa jumps (irrational leap) through VE nothing and lands maybe twisted some other way. That touch was all we needed. The others receive. The medium does not resist. Not really cages after all. Protective skins animated from within but all originally from a sameness in between. At the very heart of the electronics, a sudden flash of outside. It sends a thrill through all the wires. Walt Whitman sings: the Body Electric.

And so the drum beats may convey glad tidings. Not: the religious fanatics are here to imprison us in their dogmatic systems (after which, most of us will be shipped to America and sold into slavery) but: the drums tell stories that set us free inside. The great science teachers (Pythagoras, Heisenberg) were animal lovers too. They spoke to our condition. And their love comes through, loud and clear, when we empty ourselves to become like the isotropic vector matrix. “Become like the VE, grasshopper” counsels the Chinese sage. “Do this, and you will capture butterflies.” Grasshopper gamely sticks the captured system with a pin after gassing it to death in a special chamber. A butterfly collection. Master is appalled. Grasshopper, you see, is from America. Apparently, Americans skewer creatures who might actually be dreaming philosophers. Good thing Grasshopper here was saved in time. But thanks for the inadvertently transmitted intelligence, kid. We’ll have to prepare ourselves for America. Any American tries to stick me with a pin, I’ll kung-fu him to death. Electronic reflexing. Dragon style. Thick descriptions in Synergetics are like thick descriptions in Anthropology, sometimes. Hello, Clifford Geertz.

© 1984, 1988 1997 Global Data

Written by

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store