18th February 2011: A Short Reading List

A short reading list:

Hofstadter, Douglas (2007). I Am A Strange Loop , Basic Books, New York. (TS-4). A guidebook to the self-referential ‘I’ through philosophy, consciousness research, mathematics, topology and feedback experiments.

Kekes, John (2005). The Roots of Evil , Cornell University Press, Ithaca. What connects Charles Manson, the Albigensian Crusade and Argentina’s ‘dirty war’? Through seven detailed case studies, Kekes evaluates how evil manifests in the world, from a ‘fatal fusion’ to ‘wickedness in high places’. Kekes argues that active cultivation of ‘moral imagination’ is vital.

Mau, Bruce (2004). Massive Change , Phaidon Press, London. (TS-1). Mau and colleagues at the Institute Without Boundaries provide a provocative overview of the global trends and design challenges which may shape the 21st century. Features commentary by 34 experts in the tradition of Buckminster Fuller.

Shattuck, Roger. (1996). Forbidden Knowledge: From Prometheus to Pornography , St. Martin’s Press, New York. (TS-3). (OTR-4). Shattuck discusses the axiology of ‘forbidden knowledge’ in art, literature and history. His ‘six categories of forbidden knowledge’ is extremely useful for metaphysical research.

Shirley, John. Gurdjieff: An Introduction to His Life and Ideas , Jeremy P. Tarcher, New York. (TS-1). A nuanced and comprehensive overview of the Graeco-Armenian magus George Gurdjieff, his work, methods, legacy, pupils, and cultural impact. Clarifies some difficult concepts in The Work such as humanity’s status as “food for the moon”.

Slaughter, Richard (2004). Futures Beyond Dystopia: Creating Social Foresight , RoutledgeFalmer, London. (TS-4). (OTR-4). Slaughter is the doyen of critical futurists and editor of the Knowledge Base of Futures Studies . This collection of his ‘later period’ academic essays discusses the limits of dystopias; professional standards and methodological renewal in futures work; and Ken Wilber’s Integral framework. Features an extensive, annotated bibliography to key works in futures and foresight.

Strogratz, Steven (2003). Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order , Penguin Books, New York. (TS-3). An introduction to mathematical theories of self-organisation and synchronised oscillations. A scientific explanation for Xeperi (miracles, synchronicities).

Wieland-Burston, Joanne (1992). Chaos and Order in the World of the Psyche , Routledge, New York. (TS-3). A Jungian synthesis of Chaos as a ‘psychotherapeutic encounter’, science’s role, and strategies of ‘individuals in the face of chaos’. The forces of Chaos can paradoxically help an individual to re-establish their equilibrium.