Sunday Thoughts 021

Manichaeism, Dichotomies and the Poverty of 2×2 matrices

Growth vs Fixed (mindsets)
Good vs Evil
Communism vs Capitalism
1s and 0s
Black vs White
Left or Right
Right or Wrong
Collective vs Individual
Democrat vs Republican
National vs Labour
Strengths vs Weaknesses
and so on
and so forth…..

There is a certain irony in Manichaeism being the religion of Ancient Persia (now Iran) and modern Manichaeism being the religion of the US (with us or against us, for example). But I digress….

There is also a poverty of intellect in splitting everything into either-or categories when the richness comes from finding the “spun version” of the negative (thanks to @Matt Church for the framework).

For example:
Stated Negative: Communism
Positive Opposite: Capitalism
Spun Version: Democratic Socialism

Stated Negative: Fixed (mindset)
Positive Opposite: Growth
Spun Version: Ratchet

Stated Negative: Wrong
Positive Opposite: Right
Spun Version: Learning Opportunity

How would your interactions be different if you were to focus on the spun versions of perceived negatives? Might they give an opening for conversation?


Sunday Thoughts is a weekly series of sometimes incomplete thought pieces to stimulate thinking, and possibly annoy you.

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