Unspecifiable Future Prospects

“When we experience the profundity of our focal pattern, we have the sense that we have contacted the real. What we experience is its transforming of the very features of our world, our bodies, and our guides, on which we relied in its pursuit. A second accompanying experience also confirms the reality of our patter. We sense another range of profundity, but where the other grew out of our past, this second one grows into our future.

In the moment of a profound integration, we experience a sense of the future possibilities, prospects, horizons of the thing we have encountered. There are sides we cannot currently see, behaviors we suspect but could never predict, implications only some of which we can reason out, but which in their incompleteness may lead us to uncover new and transforming dimensions. We could in no way exhaustively list those possibilities. We can’t even name them all. Yet they in their unnameableness confirm the rightness of our integration. This sense of possibilities furnishes us with a second indicator that we have contacted the real.

Many years ago, at the time when I was first thinking and writing about this approach to knowledge, I viewed a television documentary that featured some marine biologists and their discovery of vents on the ocean floor. The interviewed biologists were jubilant. “This is the discovery of the century!” one exclaimed. “The possible implications of it are profound, more than we are able to tell.” Humans, especially those skilled with respect to the discipline in question, sense and navigate forward guided by an unspecifiable sense of future possibilities.”

Meek, pg. 127-128

I can’t help but notice the similarities between what Meek says and what Kuhn says about paradigm shifts.

Leave a Reply