Paradigm Shift

I explained the concept of ‘Brave Thinking’ last week before I posed some question to which you and I might apply this technique or discipline.
Alongside and closely associated with Brave Thinking is the idea of ‘Paradigm Shift’ which Bob Proctor champions.
In essence, the ‘future’ – individual future, community future and global future, will come about through you and I and others using brave thinking to shift the paradigms that currently control everything we are and everything we do.
A paradigm can be summed up as a ‘way of thinking’ or a framework that we live by but it’s rather more than that.
Our paradigms, and we have many of them, include our core values, our patterns of belief and faith, and what we know and understand.
Many of these paradigms have developed quite recently by which I mean over the last couple of hundred years and many over the last 70 years and 20 years.
We seem to be creating paradigms like wildfire with little or no thought about what they mean in terms of the impact they have on us as individuals and as communities.
Now is the time to examine some of these paradigms to see how well they serve us in the light of the changing world in which we live.
(As I write I’m listening – in the background – to The Scorpions ‘Wind of Change’ from just over 30 years ago – which seems very apt right now!)
So where to start?
I’m beginning to wonder if I’ve bitten off a bit more than I can chew here because the more I think about it the more this topic expands. I started off with half a dozen key paradigms but now it’s expanded like the Universe!
So much so that there could well be a whole book coming out of this (or books if I stick to ‘Peter’s Rules’!)
I can’t help thinking there’s going to be a connection here with the Laws of the Universe/Laws of Physics which I’ve referred to before but I’m not going to make that connection today.
I pointed a few areas up in the questions I asked last time, but I’ll just outline the way I’m thinking at the moment, bearing in mind that this is very much a ‘work in progress’.
Let’s start with that one – the Work Paradigm – the idea that we have to be continually ‘working’ towards something, making ‘progress’ towards something.
And I don’t mean in terms of self-development or learning, I’ll come to that later, I mean about ‘production’ – producing stuff, whether that be works of art or the ubiquitous ‘widgets’. It might be about plants or even ‘growing’ – a ‘business’ (a sub-paradigm in itself).
The end result of this progress, achieved through ‘work’ is some sort of tangible outcome that we have grown, created or manufactured which becomes part of, on a national scale, the Gross National Product or an ‘achievement’ on a more local or personal scale.
The work paradigm is about constantly putting effort into achieving more; but there’s another part to it.
The idea of working to achieve something, to produce something isn’t enough for this paradigm because it also includes the sub-paradigm that ‘work’ requires a reward.
You see, the achievement of producing or growing something isn’t enough, the work paradigm includes the concept of receiving ‘pieces of silver’ – money – for what we do.
The work paradigm frames the successful outcome of work not as the achievement, although that is part of it, but as the payment we receive for doing the work.
I could go on to explain why we’re ‘stuck’ in this paradigm, maybe another time, but we really should start thinking about changing this one because it’s doing just that – keeping us ‘stuck’ where we are. This paradigm may ‘work’ (excuse the pun) but we have to seriously question whether or not it still serves us or needs to be changed.
The second paradigm out of I don’t know how many, is the Knowledge Paradigm.
This is related to and perhaps driven to some extent by the Curiosity Paradigm which I’ll talk about another time as it’s a more fundamental part of our make up than those I’m discussing today.
The Knowledge Paradigm could be summarised as ‘the need to know’.
The need to know how things work, which goes with the corollary that if we don’t know how something works than it doesn’t, and the results it can be seen to produce are some sort of ‘luck’ or ‘magic’.
If there is no ‘proven scientific basis’ to something then it’s simply dismissed as ‘mumbo jumbo’ or an ‘old wives’ tale’.
This paradigm has now effectively ‘stolen’ the idea of Education from the Curiosity Paradigm. Children and adults are taught what is ‘known’, what has been proved, and discouraged from looking at anything that hasn’t.
You’ve heard my views (as a scientist) on ‘science’ where ‘researchers’ are paid to find and ‘prove’ a specific theory or result. The problem with knowledge is that some is ‘approved’ and some isn’t.
Further, knowledge is treated in a rather cavalier fashion. Bob Proctor says that most people have a lot of knowledge but only a few have any understanding of it, what it means, what it does, or what impact it might have when applied.
Come to that many people who have knowledge, even when they do understand it, have no idea at all how to apply it. I learnt that from years of tutoring MBA students.
The knowledge paradigm is that we must have as much approved knowledge ‘in the bank’ as possible, discarding or ignoring what has not been ‘proven’.
Just like the Money Paradigm it’s not about using that knowledge, or even understanding it; it’s just about accumulation, and much of the knowledge you and I are given to ‘educate’ us is not a lot of practical use anyway!
Once again, is this paradigm really serving our greater good? Do we need to change it?
More next time – I have Government, Belief, Life and Dimension to discuss, among others!