Vantages for Advantage

Every new lens on the world
seems to share a process…
as I discover it, an evolution.

A phase of disenchantment,
then an aha that breaks through, and
next a matrix-like revelation.
Really seeing that pattern
or narrative in all sorts of manifestations,
fractals of the form everywhere…
and later, a sort of denouement,
where I add it to my collection,
as a lens to be used when appropriate.

If only I could sell some off in a yard sale.

One Method to Rule Them All: A Single Story

What I see all too often is a “seller” or proponent of one method sharing their method, which produces some amount of insight, and then decision-makers try to act on the new information.

What I see wise decision-makers doing, in my opinion, is looking at many methods, many lenses of how to see the world, discerning which are helpful, and then acting from a composite of those perceptions. Wise ones know the danger of living in a single story (thank you Chimamanda Adichie).

Multiple Vantages

So, in my fantasy time, I am picturing a method of taking any given event or decision and working it through at least 5 different lenses, say: politics, economics, sociology or org dev, anthropology or cultural theory, and history . They all overlap, but each gives a different view, at least if we also consider the schools of thought, as those often cross the boundaries of a discipline.

What does seeing it from many different perspectives look like? David Harvey demonstrates in an RSA animate.

But you are probably not a marxist, so you don’t see the world the way David Harvey does. That is fine. If you are a pragmatist, you are probably still interested in what David Harvey sees and notices and what actions he takes, even if you think his view is different than your own.

I am not yet sure which story lines and approaches to be taking from, in the hundreds of options, but I am sure that pulling from opposing stories and from vastly different fields, gets us a richer and more useful view of the whole. I would love your suggestions on which might make a nice set of dynamic perspectives to view the world through.

What lenses are productive for you?

I am also sure that we are each coming to these perspectives with a ton of hidden assumptions which will keep giving us the same answers to all questions until we deeply question them.

What assumptions should we be wary of?