Friday, December 23, 2011

Pattern Languages: Using the Toroid and the Double Helix for Self-Reflection and Expansion

I've reflected on the previous post on Pattern Languages and the book I'm currently reading, Holistic Management by Allan Savory.

It didn't occur to me at the time of writing the post on Pattern Languages: Links between Lesson Plans, Individual Dreams, and Community; evidently, I was using the material in Holistic Management to reformulate and structure life with definitive and known patterns. 

Allan Savory has a template for creating a Holistic Goal through the realization and creation of a Statement of Purpose, Forms of Production, and Future Resource Base. In short, the Statement of Purpose is the abstract foundation that expresses and defines the meaning of what you are doing. The Forms of Production are the assets that you have access to that will fulfill your Statement of Purpose. These Forms of Production will be leveraged to create a Future Resource Base which will then become your Form(s) of Production in the future with a new Future Resource Base.

Taking this into consideration, I renamed the Statement of Purpose, Forms of Production and Future Resource base to Purpose, Foundation, and Future Foundation, respectively. They carry the same meaning and definitions. To me, they are easier to digest, to correlate and to reference.

Individuals, organizations, and communities often forget the purpose of their existence when the true Purpose does not feedback to the heart and meaning of what is being done. The Foundation should be a reflection of the Purpose and if it is not, corrections should be made so that the Future Foundation is the desired Foundation. Likewise, the Future Foundation that is achieved (which then becomes the new Foundation) should be reflected upon to determine if it holds true to the Purpose.
With this understanding, I drew a diagram to depict the function of these three items (Fig 1).

Figure 1

 This pattern creates a cyclical nature that reinforces each component, a self-recycling loop. By simply showing that each component continually affects the other you get the pattern of the Toroid (Figures 2 and 3)

Figure 2
Figure 3

Adding this function gives us a more representative model of what occurs with a Holistic Purpose, Foundation, and Future Foundation. The individual or organization continually feeds itself and thrives to achieve its potential. As time progresses, the Purpose, Foundation, and Future Foundation shifts to correct itself or expand. The depiction of the Toroid shows the self-feeding and reflective mechanisms but does not depict the expansion of the Purpose, the Foundation, and the Future Foundation.
Adding to this, we can call the beginning Purpose-0, Foundation-0, and Future Foundation-0. As an individual, organization, or community realizes a Holistic Goal with Holistic management, each component evolves to Purpose-1, Foundation-1, and Future Foundation-1. As this expands the components evolve to Purpose-2, Foundation-2, and Future Foundation-2. This model then creates three Toroids that nest one on top of the other, Figure 4.

These Toroids each realize a new state by leveraging the support of the previous Toroid. The dots on the picture represent the leverage point. Now, these Toroids are still connected and in reflection of the one above and below. Connecting the dots creates the pattern of the next pattern, the double helix.

Remembering these patterns can aide us in picturing how we can correlate our subconscious thoughts, conscious thoughts, and our actions to stay true to ourselves and each other. In this way, we are able to continually reflect on the ripples and disruptions that we channel into our surroundings to create a meaningful Holistic Purpose, Foundation, and Future Foundation for Life.


  1. Nice piece Chow!

    This motivates me to get on my game and start lining out some of the past theoretical modeling stuff I've been sitting on.

  2. Always welcome, Theron.

    Can't wait to read up on it.

  3. Very nice! I like how my thoughts and memories are on an eternal loop until I they have served their purpose and I have properly filed them away.

  4. Thanks Audry, it's always delightful to hear back from others who also enjoy this type of thinking (growing).