Hi Tom,

I read the communication below and your own description at the site
http://www.newciv.org/ISSS_Primer/asem26tm.html. I would like to point
out that I completely agree with your approach. As far as I can see by
now, it is in congruence with what I have written. (I will send that to
you as soon as possible.) The only difference is that I make my
statements with lots of examples, which is more attractive to readers
from the social sciences and the humanities, who are very often lay
people concerning formalization.

There is a similar notational apprach that was published in 1965 by the
renowned Polish mathematician and economist Oskar Lange ("Wholes and
Parts - A General Theory of System Behaviour", Pergamon Press, Oxford,
England, 74 pages; original Polish edition of 1962). That book was one
of my gateways to systems thinking.

My question as to such notational approaches is: Should they REPLACE the
disciplinary scientific conceptual systems OR merely COMPLEMENT them ? 
I advocate the latter, but some colleagues argued for the former.

The two ways of presenting basics of systemics could very well be
integrated parallel, for different readerships, in a revised Primer.

With best wishes

Eberhard

Eberhard Umbach

apl.Prof., Dr.phil., Dipl.-Volkswirt
Institute of Environmental Systems Research
University of Osnabrueck
D-49069 Osnabrueck, Germany
Tel. ++49/541/969-2511 Fax: -2770
E-mail: umbach@uos.de
Internet homepage: http://www.usf.uos.de/~eberhard

============================================
Thommandel@aol.com wrote:

> http://www.newciv.org/ISSS_Primer/asem26tm.html

> *Nothing is impossible; there are ways that lead to
> everything, and if we had sufficient will we should
> always have sufficient means. It is often merely for
> an excuse that we say things are impossible.
>
> La Rochefoucauld (1613-1680)*
> **
> **

> In a message dated 6/29/2004 9:53:35 PM Central Daylight Time,
> kauffman@uic.edu writes:
>
>     June 29, 2004
>     Department of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science
>     University of Illinois at Chicago
>     Chicago, Illinois 60607-7045
>     <kauffman@uic.edu>
>
>     To Whom It May Concern:
>     I am writing this letter in behalf of Tom Mandel and his work
>     on an insight of startling simplicity, and the notational model
>     that he
>     developed from this insight. I shall describe in my own terms the
>     structure of this insight, but the reader of this letter is
>     encouraged to
>     look directly at Tom Mandel's constructions and to encourage him to
>     communicate concerning them.
>
>     The question is the nature of a system, or a description in the widest
>     possible sense. We find "things" in the world and are most
>     concerned with
>     how those "things" are related to one another. Tom's favorite
>     example is
>     the two sides of a coin, separate and yet related (and brought into
>     existence) by the body of the coin itself. Any two apparently separate
>     things are related, but the story can become quite complex.
>     Contemplate
>     the relationship between the pen and one's ability to write, or the
>     relationship between the electron and the operations of the internet.
>     A fundamental notation would be one that leaves room, given two
>     entities, for the relationship that goes between them. This
>     relationship
>     can seem to arise from the individuals (as a conversation arises
>     among its
>     discussants), or it can appear that the individuals arise from the
>     relationship itself (as electron and positron arise from
>     space/energy/photon, or as world and observer arise from awareness).
>
>     One should make one's own notations. Each such notation is itself
>     an instance of the ideal of relationship in one its many
>     manifestations.
>     Tom uses
>
>     A____
>              |
>           R |----------C
>     B____|
>
>
>     or algebraically
>     (A,B)R=C.
>
>     where C stands for the (whole) dividing/ arising from A and B, and
>     R the connection/relation of A and B.
>
>     Such notation is simple, yet
>     insistent, calling for the articulation of unity  C, the relation
>     R and the
>     "parts" A and B.
>
>     Why is this important?  The answer is: Because such notation and the
>     attitude behind it continually call the question of relationship
>     and the
>     nature of relationship. All descriptions, all systems, are built
>     this way.
>     But we keep forgetting the glue and putting it into the
>     background. Here
>     all three fundamentals in any distinction are brought into the
>     foreground,
>     and we want to know them and their dialogue. (Powerful Guru, Da
>     Free John,
>     lead his students again and again with the question "Avoiding
>     Relationship?". There is no place to hide.)
>
>     There is an important symmetery here. If we bring forth the
>     relationship, then we can ask both how the parts create the whole,
>     and how the whole comes to be divided into parts.
>
>     We are all too familiar with
>     myriad ways of building from parts, but it is all too easy to lose
>     sight
>     of the whole. To turn around into the whole, to ask how does this
>     unity
>     become a multiplicity, is the essential question of science. It is the
>     question that leads to theory, understanding, unification,
>     clarification
>     and practical understanding. Without the question of the whole, we
>     have
>     only recipes for the building of structures from known parts.
>
>     The essential insight that we all have and lose, again and again,
>     is that
>     sense of the whole and an intuition of how the multiplicity arises.
>     There is no multiplictity!
>     In relationship, all parts cohere into the whole.
>     There is a multiplicity!!
>     It is obtained by ignoring the relationships the
>     return to the whole.
>
>     To the degree that systems are seen as evocations of
>     a whole or larger structure, there is an opening for plasticity,
>     creativity and new knowledge.
>
>     Having found this insight and his notation, where will Mandel go from
>     here?  Really, the question is, where will we go in our
>     relationship to
>     him and to each other in this quest for unity in multiplicity?
>
>     Yours truly,
>
>     Lou Kauffman
>
>     P.S. There are many existing and possible mathematical, scientific and
>     philosophical continuations of this discussion. Prominent among
>     them, for
>     me, is "Laws of Form" by G. Spencer-Brown, a book with a notation and
>     insight very close to the above remarks and to Tom's essential
>     notions.
>     Ludwig Wittgenstein said "The limits of my language are the limits
>     of my
>     world."
>

>
>     We have the opportunity to expand our language, to expand
>     beyond imagination our world. Mathematics is all about
>     relationship, and the formal images of its patterns. Graph theory in
>     particular is concerned about the diagramming of entities in such
>     a way
>     that significant relationships are indicated. Topology is the
>     attempt to
>     formulate the notion of a continuous whole (a topological space)
>     and to
>     find the appropriate ways of dividing the space into parts that
>     reveal its
>     global strucuture. The themes are always there: mathematics,
>     logic, music,
>     biology, physics, astronomy/cosmology, linguistics, philosophy, ...
>
>     All reflections of
>     the possibility
>     of saying anything at all
>     to anyone,
>     about the
>     Universe.
>