The Relational philosophy, conclusion

Concl.1. Theoretical conclusion; nature's mind

There does not exist a more natural being on earth than a human being. That is the most important conclusion of the relational view at human and reality, I think. As for our body we are the most natural being on earth, even grown up still like the fetus. And our mind too is a very natural tool, a sense-organ that sees the relations in nature, the surviving-techniques in particular, and that is how we survive.
We are not elevated above nature but more than any other being immersed in nature, and that is why we are special.

Western philosophy mainly was a try to understand mind, ideas, spirit and the like. If you can not situate mind in nature, then you have a problem, even a big problem because our mind also makes us human.
Accepting a super-natural mind, like Plato did, not really is a solution. You split up reality then, like you split up human, in body separated from mind, isolating human from nature as well.

But if you see mind playing in nature, then you must try to situate that mind, to define it in a kind of touchable way. Otherwise your philosophy will be rather obscure, like Hegel's view . For Hegel, mind was playing in nature, or at least realizing in nature. But he could not define it better than calling it 'Geist'. When you replace 'Geist' by relation or relation-pattern, then his philosophy is much more clear, his dialectic method as well.

Using new basic-concepts like existence, phenomenon, structure, event and the like, resulting in new schools in philosophy, do not bring a real solution either. These new concepts then always are considered to enclose matter and idea or body and mind in one. But then there still is the problem to situate that mind. Hiding the mind-problem in a new concept, does not solve the problem. What exactly is existence or a phenomenon, structure or event?
A relating between parts, that is what they mean then with existence, phenomenon, structure and event. Call it by name then, in a relational view.

In the relational view, mind is defined as the relations in nature, the fitting of forms. And then we always can have the bolt-nut couple in mind. Spirit and mind then are understandable in a touchable way. Mind then is nature, body is mind.

Our mind then is a seeing of mind, a sense-organ. We can see our mind as an inner-eye. With our ordinary eyes we see the forms, like we can hear, smell, taste and touch these forms with our other sense-organs. With our mind as inner-eye we also see relations between the forms, just fitting of forms. Our mind then can be understood in the same touchable way we understand our other senses.

We still are a special being in the relational view. But that is not because we exclusively have a mind in a for the rest mindless nature, but because we exclusively can see the mind or spirit of nature, in the relations in nature.
We are the essence of the animal. We have the inner-body of all mammals and birds, and we can imitate all their different surviving techniques, so that we can live in all their different circumstances.

The software animals and plants have rooted in their genes, growing furs, feathers, claws, hoofs and other techniques, is with us situated in our head or actually in our view; we have an eye for these techniques and other relations in nature.
And that surely can be called special, because other animals can not see these relations. But it is not some super-natural thing but is very natural, just a question of looking and seeing.

We have the inner-body of all animals.

In the relations in nature, we can find and see everything. Relational phenomena like the four natural forces and their technical possibilities, and like the force of life and Eros, are the creative power of nature. We can measure and map these relations and the result then is our science including mathematics.
And this science then also is nothing more than a map. At the moment we sometimes overrate this map. Facts not fitting into a certain scientific frame on the map, are considered to be unreal then, or are neglected like we do with the relations in nature.

We can see the relations and that is why we are human. But we can also enjoy these relations, by seeing the harmony in relation-patterns, in things, in sounds, in food, in colors, in nature. Being aware of these relations is always enjoying as well, simply because there is so much harmony in nature. Actually, every scientific and mathematical law already is a description of harmony, and in this way mathematics is a kind of music.

No being on earth therefore is able to enjoy life more than a human does, and enjoying always is an enjoyment of the senses, a caress of the senses, also if it concerns poems or classical music. Caressing our eyes, ears and other senses, that is what we always are doing.
While a heron and snake swallow their prey in one bite, food is just energy for them, while animals communicate by simple screams and cries and are content with a simple shelter, a human makes a feast of all these biological functions and sensations.
We always want to enjoy, we are always playing, relating forms in pleasant ways, also when we build houses or make cars or shoes.

Nice car. Nice car. Nice car.

We change eating into dining, communicating into poems, sounds into music. We always want to make things nice, by caressing our senses, or at least softening the pain of our senses.
We always are busy with making smooth relations, so that the relations in ourselves feel good as well.

And there is nothing wrong with that. Nature is full of harmony in relations, that simply is a fact. This harmony in relations even is the 'scientific' root of reality. Would not there be harmony, fitting of forms and perfection in that fitting, then atoms and structures in general could not exist. So we should not be ashamed of our biological fixation on enjoyment of the senses, since this sensual harmony is the essence of nature's mind, of nature as a whole.
When we see Eros as the symbol of all these relations, then Eros indeed is a kind of God, like the bolt-nut couple is a kind of god in mechanics and light in physics.

We often make a distinction between enjoying poems, literature, classical music, philosophy and the like on a kind of bright upper side, and enjoying snacks, motorbikes, house-music, sex and the like on a dark and low side. However, it always is perfection in the fitting of forms, we enjoy. It always is an enjoyment of the senses. Making a good meal therefore is as lofty an art as writing a good philosophy.
Difference of course is that we need millions of meals but actually only one good philosophy.

We should better see and realize that, I think, so our naturalness, also when we seriously speak about figures, the economic growth for example. These serious circles of industries want to produce nice, pleasant and enjoyable things. If the product is not nice and pleasant, nobody will buy.
Would we be like animals, so be content with food just for the sake of energy, be content with just a functional shelter as housing, be content with clothes as simple protection for our body et cetera, then a great deal of our economic and other activities would be superfluous. So actually most of the time we are playing, also when we work.

We are special, because of our naturalness.

Concl.2. Practical conclusion; the end of growth

And whether we like it or not, the next centuries will completely differ from the just finished century. In the year 1900 we hardly had any techniques at our disposal. Nearly everything was hand- or footwork then. Only the horse helped us now and then. Now we have technical means and devices for all our activities. And it took us only one century.

Living for a human consists of performing all kinds of activities, breathing, eating and drinking, sleeping, warming, washing, transporting and moving, communicating, cleaning, caring et cetera. We are using the means of life then.
And to be able to do that, we have to produce, to grow food, to make clothes, to build houses et cetera. These kinds of activities, so producing the means of life, also are part of life.
And in order to make these activities more pleasant and easy, we have our techniques, our tractors, our cars, our vacuum cleaners, telephones, planes, hoes, shoes, typewriters, computers et cetera.

In the year 1900 nearly all these activities still were hand- and footwork. Nowadays however, we have all kinds of technical tools for all these activities. Whatever human activity you think of, we always have tools to help us perform the activities. There are not many activities left to invent techniques for. Like it is useless nowadays to become an explorer like Columbus, it also is useless to become an inventor like Marconi for profession.
We now have mapped nearly everything. Discoveries in future will more and more be discoveries of smaller and smaller details. The human now has discovered nearly all relations in nature.
I am not saying that we understand everything. We have mapped nearly everything, that is what I am saying.

Of course we will always do new inventions, maybe a new kind of vehicle. However, these new products then nearly always will replace an old product, like the computer replaced the typewriter, like the cd replaced the lp, like the flat screen will replace the cathode-ray tube, and the digital camera the roll-film et cetera.

I think this insight especially is important for economics and politics. In the just finished century, we have discovered techniques for all human activities. And every new discovery resulted in further economic growth.
In the future however, the discoveries will more and more be improvements of the quality of our products, and that does not necessarily involve an economic growth. On the contrary, in many cases such a growth in quality at the same time involves an economic shrink. To build a personal computer for example, we need less material and less labor than to build such a heavy, mechanical typewriter in the past, while we can do much more with a pc.
Growth of quality often is a shrink in quantity, an economic shrink.

The change from a situation wherein nobody had a car to a situation with a car for everyone, was an economic growth. Replacing all our old cars by new cars however, is not such a growth. On the contrary, since that future car will be better and simpler.

It is a fact of course that more than half of the human population on earth still is living in poverty, and providing them with the necessary means of existence will involve a further economic growth on earth. These poor countries however will try to take the production of all these means in their own hands and they will succeed in it. For the Western countries this development therefore will not mean a further economic growth in the end.

The age of discoveries is over I think, or almost finished. We will never do really great discoveries again like the discovery of electricity, the wheel, the engine, the cog-wheel, the transistor, the roentgen-radiation, the semi-conductor, the airplane, the nuclear power, the shoe, the coat, the bike, the screw, the lens, the glass, the door, the window, the house, the chair et cetera.
Our future inventions will more and more be minor and minor improvements of already existing machines and tools. There are not many activities left to invent techniques for.
Facts can be dis-covered only once in the life-time of the human race.

We will never do these and many other inventions again. Satellite dish. Car. Bolt and nut. Clock. Scales.

And understanding is something different. That also is a growth in knowledge, however a qualitative growth. And this qualitative growth may never come to an end. We always will see new melodies. The quantitative growth however, the measuring of facts, has (nearly) come to an end.

The work is done. Now we must try to understand.

Last great discovery was the invention of the computer or more in general the semi-conductor technology. Before the computer, we only had techniques to help us do our hand- and footwork. The computer helps us with our mind-work as well. And we are still in the middle of this revolution and it therefore takes a lot of extra work at the moment. However, within a couple of decades the computer will be fully incorporated in our life. And then we will see that the computer really is saving us work, saving us material as well.

The age of discoveries is over and will never come back. We now have discovered and mapped nearly all possibilities of the four natural forces, the mechanical, the electromagnetic, the chemical and the nuclear possibilities. We can not make and construct everything yet but we know how to do it. We know the possibilities and we also learn to know the impossibilities.

Some people, scientists as well, seem to believe in a never ending growth of knowledge. However, all science is lain in nature, in the relations between forms. And once having mapped all these relational phenomena, growth of knowledge has come to an end. And we are now nearing this state, are already living in it.

I am not saying that we already understand everything, because measuring and understanding are different things, like quantity and quality. Especially if it concerns the essence of reality, we did not learn much in the last 2000 years. An atom still is a miracle for us, though we have mapped all his behavior.
We understand the bolt and nut and the relation between the two parts. If it concerns the relation between man and woman, so Eros and life, then understanding is much more difficult. And the relation between proton and electron still is a secret for us.
We do not yet understand electricity. But we have mapped electricity nearly completely, that is what I am saying. We know how it works, we know the facts.

There are not many facts left to be discovered. There for instance is a smallest wave-length of light. That is a natural fact, a fact that can not be changed. Things or events smaller than this shortest wave-length therefore can never be measured, never. They anyhow can not be seen or measured in just 1 view. And since light is all, such small facts do not even exist. There we meet a limit of our reality, which also is a limit of knowledge. And we have reached that limit, we can use this smallest wave-length now .

We have mapped nearly everything, but do not yet understand the map itself, that is the main problem, I think.

In the past we were very much focused on new discoveries, so on making good maps and building-schemes. That period of mapping now is finished, which means that in the next centuries we must choose for an other way of living.
There actually no longer is a need for being in a hurry, it even is useless. It was useful in the last century, because by being in a hurry we have discovered many new techniques in a short period of time. But we have finished that road, whether we like it or not.

We now have time to think about the purpose of life for a human. And I think our purpose is to discover the spirit of nature. We now have mapped this spirit, mapped the relations in nature, but do we also know the spirit? Do we know what a map is? What our mind is?
I think the purpose of life for a human is lain in enjoying, enjoying the harmony of nature, the creative force of nature.

And maybe we will never be able to understand the essence of reality in a rational way. Because for us real understanding means being able to picture the phenomena. And can we picture the essence of music and art, the essence of electricity?

And even if an understanding of the essence is possible, I think this essence is enjoyment itself, like you understand music when you enjoy it, and at the same time also know for sure that you will never understand music in a rational way.
There is harmony then, a perfect fitting, a sensual act actually. That is what you know then. But what exactly is harmony? What is the beauty of music?
The impression is measurable but not the impressing.

For us Western people, understanding has become the same as mapping, and that is why we sometimes take the map more seriously than the real area. But the map only is an abstraction. Real understanding is experiencing the area, the harmony in relations, by feeling.

The map actually also is our mind, the expression of our mind. And our mind only is a sense organ.
At the moment we see our mind as a kind of purpose, while it only is a mean. Like we see economics as a purpose, while it really is only a mean.
Purpose of life is not making food but enjoying food, and all other relations.

Concl.3. Relational science

I also can imagine that we create new sciences in the future, a scientific approach wherein not the parts but the relations are the central issues.
Everything in reality is a relating between parts. At the moment we have divided all knowledge into different sciences mainly by dividing the parts into sorts. Sorts like technical things (divided into mechanical, chemical, electromagnetic et cetera things), living beings (divided into plants, trees, insects, birds, mammals et cetera) et cetera. A science then studies a certain sort of things.

Things and their properties are expressed as nouns and adjectives, as names, while relations are expressed as verbs. At the moment these names are the central issues.
I can imagine new sciences wherein not the names but the verbs are the central issues, related verbs like seeing and looking for example, or growing and developing. So all aspects of seeing and looking, everywhere in nature and in our culture.
Such a scientist of seeing and looking then at the same time is a technician, a physicist, a physician, a biologist, a psychologist et cetera, all focused on seeing and looking.
I think many new relations then become visible between the many different facts we know. Different facts then appear to be only one fact, like the bolt-nut couple is only one fact.

Such a new relational scientific approach also can help us to get a better grip on for example our environmental problems. These problems now are split up and divided between many different sciences, all using an own language as well. And by doing that we make the problem even bigger.
One group of scientists now is pleading for one interest, oppressing the other interest. A second group of scientists is pleading for that other interest, oppressing the one interest. That is how it often happens. The relation between the one and the other then is overlooked. And then you will not find a solution for the problem.
If we, rich Western people, want to protect the rain-forests in poor areas, then we must provide these poor people with new means of existence. Otherwise these poor gold-seekers will continue with polluting the rivers with mercury and with eating rare species of animals.

Next to that we of course also need specialists who know all about for example the human heart, the nuclear power-station, the car-engine, the camera et cetera. They then have to concentrate on these things in order to learn all about it. But even for them it is wise to bridge borders with related sciences.

Also now relations, so the working of reality, are studied of course. However, even these relations, seeing and looking for example, then are divided between different sciences.
That is why we then need a so-called interdisciplinary approach as an exception on the normal approach. I think such relational sciences should not be an exception but a normal matter of fact.

Concl.4. About learning and intelligence; the relational human

I conclude with a final chapter about learning and intelligence. Using his mind well is very important for a human and for mankind as a whole. If we use our mind in a wrong way, then we actually do not live like a human. Like a bird does not live like a bird, when he does not use his wings as wings.
I think we are now using our mind and our knowledge as a kind of purpose, while it only is a mean. And that actually is the world upside down. The end or only a mean, that is not just a tiny difference but makes all the difference.

Though understanding is a simple act, seeing forms that fit, not every human being is able to see the same relations. Some of us are more focused on relations in sounds, other on relations in material or in food or in colors or on relations between people or animals et cetera.
And not every relation is as easy visible as the relation between shoe and foot or bolt and nut. To see the relation between a flower and a satellite dish, you also need a picture in your mind.
And sometimes the relation between two facts follows many steps, like the relation between the first move and chess-mate.
That, I think, explains the difference in intelligence between people. We do not all see the same relations.

Is this difference inborn? Partly it is inborn I think, like differences in the sensitiveness of our ordinary sense-organs are inborn.
But we also can train our mind in seeing relations. We can teach our children to especially look at relations, relations between the many facts, so that different facts appear to be only one fact. We can make our knowledge more simple, I think, more understandable.

Learning how to repair a bike, how are we doing that today? You have to learn many names then, names of parts and names of the materials they are made of.
However, you actually only need a good look at the relations, the relations between the bike and the tools you use as well. You do not need to know any name to repair a bike, though knowing names is convenient of course when you have to order a new part. Knowing names then is a mean and not the purpose.
In the same way, many means are considered to be the end in the West. Work, economics, language, maps, institutions, techniques and the like are no purpose in life but only means and the same is true for our mind.

As long as we see means as the end, we are turning the world upside down. Confusion is the result, confusion in the society, confusion in individuals.
The essence of a human is to be free (that is how a human is built) which first of all demands a free mind, using knowledge as only a map, walking miles and miles without map.
New information too only is needed now and then. We now live in 2000 at the beginning of the age of information, that is what they say. As if the people of the future after waking up all immediately go on internet to gather information whole day long. With me, weeks and even months pass by without any need of new information. Information only is a mean.
(But also see 'The end of closed societies' on the homepage of this website.)

Seeing the relations, can free our mind, free from superfluous ballast as well. Many different isolated facts then appear to be only a few related facts.

The relational view not only is a philosophy, not only is theory. It actually makes theory to some natural thing, ideas living in nature.
When you really experience your mind as a sense-organ, then you will see, hear, smell, taste and feel in a new different way. Your awareness then in a way is dwelling in these relations. You will feel much more connected then, with everything and all.

You will also better see all these disturbed and broken relations then, so the pain in our Western society. But that is temporary, because things will change when we open our eyes.

And you can train yourself, by looking at relations between forms and seeing that these relations indeed are the spirit.
Looking at colors for example. Really seeing the colors. The only measurable difference between red and blue, is a difference in length, the wave-length. That wave however is not a colored wave. That wave only is length.
You in a way are the painter of colors, simply by looking. In the same way you are coloring everything, other people as well. And at the same time you are colored by your surroundings, by other people as well.
And that impression actually is all there is. We throw a finite light on each other and that is why we are, and what we are. Knowing that that is a fact, which is the purpose of this philosophy, can help you really see it. Then you can dwell in the colors and other relations, with both feet on the ground.

Why do I write? It is politics I think, a desire to improve the world, something that easily can be done. It also is curiosity of course, a desire to understand.
But why am I making this homepage or website? That is a lot of work without wage. Why am I doing this? Just to show you my ideas? Yes. But why this kind of ideas?
I write about harmony in relations, simply because I like to see harmony in relations.
First of all I would make the world a safe home for every human being on earth. The rich then of course must give to the poor. However, we all will enjoy this growing harmony. We will be paid back with great joy.
And satisfied people will not make war. War also comes to an end in a relational world.
Happy people, connected with nature, will also protect nature, the whole earth as the environment of mankind.
So all problems come to an end in a relational view.

It will also really happen when people accept the relational view. Because there is room for every one in a relational view, for all kinds of religions and beliefs as well. It always is the other view that makes my view mine.
People with a relational view, see antipodes as partners and gaps as bridges. I only disagree with not-relational people.

Jan Helderman
end 1999 - beginning 2000

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