The Tree of Knowledge: The Biological Roots of Human Understanding

Humberto Maturana and Francisco Varela. The book that you hold in your hands is not just another introduction to the biology of cognition. It is a complete outline for an alternative view of the biological roots of understanding. From the outset we warn readers that the view presented here will not coincide with those they are likely to be familiar with. Indeed we will propose a way of seeing cognition not as representation of the world “out there”, but rather as an ongoing bringing forth of a world through the process of living itself. To accomplish this goal, we shall follow a rigorous conceptual itinerary wherein every concept builds on preceding ones, until the whole is an indissociable network. We thus discourage a casual, diagonal reading of this book. In compensation, we have done our best to provide a wealth of illustrations and a conceptual map of salient ideas, clearly indicated in the text as a separate boxes, so that readers can always find where they are standing along the journey.


Read also: The Dance of Understanding

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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