Systems Thinking: Ancient Maya’s Evolution of Consciousness and Contemporary Systems Thinking

Systems thinking as a modern approach for problem solving was revived after WWII even though it had been an ancient philosophy. We can track systems thinking back to antiquity. Differentiated from Western rationalist traditions of philosophy, C. West Churchman often identified with the I Ching as a systems approach sharing a frame of reference similar to pre-Socratic philosophy and Heraclitus. In the paper we will compare the evolutionary system of consciousness, which was presented in Tun calendar at Maya Indians and contemporary systems theory and systems thinking, which is nothing else but highly evolved human consciousness in society. The Mayan numerical system and long count units has been proven as one of the most accurate systems for describing the present and future of the civilization in which we have all evolved. We will present Mayan nine-level pyramids system that represents the evolutionary system – the consciousness, which nowadays shows the actual level of human consciousness. Deriving from all described we will show the main systems principles, discussed by contemporary systems authors and Mayan systems principles, which differs only in one expression – they named a “big picture” as “the divine plan”. The final results can be perfectly implied to the society we live in. Seeing the world from the big picture point of view is reaching a level of awareness, where linear thinking is replaced by system thinking. Maya explained that the civilization will achieve the system of  conscious cocreation. We can claim that linear thinking guides us to a limited consciousness, whereas systems thinking opens the possibilities of conscious co-creation for the benefits of sustainable society and future of the planet.


About Giorgio Bertini

Research Professor. Founder Director at Learning Change Project - Research on society, culture, art, neuroscience, cognition, critical thinking, intelligence, creativity, autopoiesis, self-organization, rhizomes, complexity, systems, networks, leadership, sustainability, thinkers, futures ++
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