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Deep Biomimicry: Co-creating With the Dream of Nature

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Deep Biomimicry: Co-creating With the Dream of Nature

  1. 1. Deep Biomimicry Co-Creating With The Dream of Nature Mark Shekoyan, PhD Senior Design Researcher – Cisco Systems
  2. 2. Biomimicry: An Emergent Discipline • Inspired by sustainable design projects, focusing on HCD for 15 years. • Studying to be Biomimicry Specialists through Biomimicry3.8 • Biomimicry: “Conscious Emulation of Nature’s Genius” • Taking Nature as “Model, Mentor, and Measure” • Hybrid emergent discipline at the edge of Biology and Design.
  3. 3. Bullet Trains, Kingfishers and Sharkskin: Matching Life’s Principles • Japanese Shinkansen Train • Designs Based on Kingfisher • Reduce Sound, Faster, Reduced Fuel • Sharklet: Germ Resistant Adhesive Surface used In healthcare to reduce infections • Sharks don’t accumulate barnacles like ships • Texture of their skin
  4. 4. How It’s Done: Design Cycle, Isites & the “Functional Bridge”
  5. 5. Cultural categories: Ethos, Emulate, (re)connect • (re)connect: listening to nature and rediscover one’s relationship • Emulate: Nature as model, mentor and measure (Sharklet example) • Function • Process • Ecosystem • Ethos where we “Fit In” and life creates conditions for life. A people’s “Ethos is the tone, character and quality of their way of life, Its moral and aesthetic style and mood; it is the underlying attitude towards themselves and their world that life reflects….It contains their most comprehensive ideas of order.” ( Geertz - Ethos, Worldview and the Analysis of Sacred Symbols”
  6. 6. “Trumping” Nature with Insect Drones and Cyborg Fashion • Increase in military and corporate funding for “Biomimicry.” • Israeli Military Uses Biomimicry to Design Drone Butterfly: “The Butterfly drone can perform tricks that have never before been achieved by a surveillance device. It can fly indoors, thereby enabling covert information gathering during meetings inside buildings, at train stations and other public buildings as well as outdoors, and it is equipped with a tiny 0.15 gram camera…DRONE BUTTERFLY TRUMPS NATURE.” • Intel’s “Expanding Dress.” Mirroring “Threat display’s and self confidence of animals.” (Sensors) • “Biomimicry Turns Nature into a Factory.” (Newsweek 2010) • Mirrors Trend in the “Monetization of Nature” what’s known as “Ecosystem Services. (Water, Soil) can only be preserved if we put a price tag on it.
  7. 7. Problematizing “Ethos” as Contested Turf • Ethos: Ethics, Moral Philosophy, respect for all life forms, “FIT IN” on earth, survive and be a beneficial species. Create conditions conducive to life. • Self-social-nature orientation and behavior is unconscious and rooted in deep historical and sociocultural patterning • Western’ man’s assumptions and conceptual orientations to nature, it-It vs. I-Thou relationships. • Separate competitive utilitarian egoic self vs. holistic integral co-creative self
  8. 8. Intentionality in Biomimicry “Seeing is a value laden undertaking.” (N.R. Hanson) • Biologist Assumptions & Tacits: • Techno-scientific paradigm , • Darwinism, • Nature is without soul/purpose. • Waking rational test/study/experimentation is best way to “Know.” • We know more through science then through mysticism or intuitive reverie. • Design Assumptions & Tacit: • Design is problem solving. • There are problems to be solved that should be solved. • “Clients” “Stakeholders” need to be served. • The designer has the knowledge and skill, not the people themselves. • We should design things. (Letting things be is not a designers forte.) • Bottom line: • Both disciplines that underlie Biomimicry bring their own intentionality: cultural frames/schemas/orientations and tacit to Biomimicry. • These tacits, in turn, are rooted in modernity: enlightenment thinking, 300+ years of techno-rationality, empiricism, science as we know it today, and Capitalism.
  9. 9. Gestell (Enframing) The Essence of Modern Technology Enframing means the gathering together of that setting- upon that sets upon man, i.e., challenges him forth, to reveal the real, in the mode of ordering, as standing- reserve. Enframing means that way of revealing that holds sway in the essence of modern technology and that it is itself not technological.[4] "the rule of enframing threatens man with the possibility that it could be denied to him to enter into a more original revealing and hence to experience the call of a more primal truth. Instrumentality: technology is an instrument to achieve human ends, specifically those of building up or arranging
  10. 10. Emulating Ecology: From Shallow to Deep Biomimicry SHALLOW ECOLOGY Conservation Short-Term Ego Cost-Benefit Human Focused Utilitarian Scientific/Rational Man’s needs/desires DEEP ECOLOGY Preservation Restoration Cohabitation Self Symbiosis/Coexistence Symbolic/Spiritual “Meaning” Rational and Non-rational Gaia’s Needs
  11. 11. Opening the Sensory Gates to the Dreams of Anima Mundi – The Soul of the World • All nature an expression of underlying archetypal patterns, like Plato’s Forms (Arche). • These archetypal patterns dwell in the imaginal realm ….a non-physical dimension • Bohms “Implicate” Order. • Sheldrake’s Morphogenic Fields • Our sensory gating channels (normative Consciousness) block these out • (Rooted in 400 years of scientific materialism and Techno-rational thinking. • The plant and animal realm itself has “Mind” and the nature of that mind is dreaming. • Archaic word for this collective dream mind (Anima Mundi- The Soul of the World) • To enter this imaginal realm is to understand the “Dream of Nature” and potentially access these archetypal patterns
  12. 12. Neo-Animism: Remembering the World Soul (Anima Mundi) “In their visions, shamans take their consciousness down to the molecular level and gain access to information related to DNA, which they call “animate essences” or “sprits” This is where they see double helixes, twisted ladders and chromosome shapes. This is how shamanic cultures have known for millennia that the vital principle is the same for all living beings and is shaped like two entwined serpents. DNA is the source of their astonishing botanical and medicinal knowledge, which can be attained only in de-focalized and “Non- rational” states of consciousness though its results are empiraclly verifiable. (Narby – Cosmic Serpent 117). • Shamans de-focalize their consciousness via Ahayuasca and are able to see cosmic • patterns • Show up in shamanic art • What we call DNA shamans see as an animating life force in all of creation that gives nature it’s form and patterns…Cosmic Mother Goddess Serpent • My hypothesis is based on the idea that DNA in particular, and nature in general are minded. This contravenes the founding principle of the molecular biology that is the current orthodoxy P145)
  13. 13. Back to Bateson • “My central thesis can now be approached in words: The patterns that connects is a metapattern. It is a pattern of patterns. It is that meta pattern which defines the vast generalization that, indeed, it is, patterns which connect.” (Bateson, Mind and Nature -11) • “There is a larger Mind of which the individual mind is only a subsystem. The larger mind is comparable to “God.” But it is still immanent in the total interconnected social system and planetary ecology. "Freudian (Depth) psychology expanded the concept of mind inwards to include the whole communication system within the body – the autonomic, the habitual and the vast range of unconsciouss processes. What I am saying expands mind outwards. And both of these changed reduce the scope of the consciousness self.” (Bateson, Steps to the Ecology of Mind 461)
  14. 14. Changing Our Way of Knowing: Epistemology • “The Goethean Scientist seeks to participate in the objects investigated to such a degree, that the mind makes itself one with the object.” • Why should it not also true in the intellectual area that through intuitive perception of eternally created nature we may become worthy of participating spiritually in its creative processes?” • “Beauty is an archetypal phenomenon. While it never materializes as such, it sheds its glow over a thousand different manifestations of the creative spirit and is as multiform as nature itself. “
  15. 15. Anthropocentric Mind EXISTENTIAL NEEDMANUFACTURED WANT GAIAIN MIND -COSMO CENTRICISM (The Pattern That Connects) DEEP BIOMIMICRY Human Centered Design Biomimicry : Contested Space Classic Industry Design Anthropology
  16. 16. Anthropology of Consciousness & Deep Biomimicry: • Altering Sensory Gating Channels: • Altered States/Shamanic States of Consciousness • Entheogens & Creativity • Neo-Animism • Dreams, Reverie and Visions • The “Ecological Self” • Transpersonal Ecology • Integral Epistemology/Ontology Bringing the “DEEP” to Deep Biomimicry
  17. 17. A Fork in the Road Newton’s Sleep & The Satanic Mills Deep Biomimicry & Co-Creating the Garden VS.
  18. 18. What Does The River Want From Us? What a river, a world, wants of its people may be not merely pollution- dispersing agents but, I would suggest, an entire culture of engagement, whereby our sense of our own meaning becomes suffused with the meanings that the river, as part of a living universe, has for itself. This is achieved when, in synergy with the river, we no longer think of it merely as ours but also think of ourselves as its - when we take our place in the river’s world, and build our desires, our ends, on that premise.” (Freya Matthews – Towards a Deeper Philosophy of Biomimicry)
  19. 19. THANK YOU Mark Shekoyan, PhD Senior Design Researcher Cisco Systems avalon2012@yahoo.com

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