[Proposal] Cosmos Café - Introducing The Patterning Instinct

Proposals are percolating brews brewing, waiting for the right time-space for an introduction to our ever-growing, always-pulsating Cosmos Café menu and calendar. Give the proposal a like if you think it would be a good addition to the list of Cosmic brews.

In your time zone: TBD

ZOOM video conference: https://zoom.us/j/711610894

From @care_save:

Reading / Watching / Listening

Seed Questions

  • Q1
  • Q2

Context, Backstory, and Related topics

  • Other relevant links or topics, e.g., leading up to this talk
  • Links to additional reading, viewing, listening

Agenda items

  • Coordinating upcoming sessions
  • Tech questions
  • Other procedural issues
  • Meta / reflections on Café practice itself

This looks very interesting, so, I hope Carolyn could present a relevant chapter and make this a Cafe topic. I believe we need to sponsor our favorites rather than hope others will take in our orphans and protect them. Thinkers we admire need our sponsorship. I advocate for authors and thinkers I like and try to make it a happening. Please, Carolyn, make a date and give us the assignment, and I will be glad to show up and develop this further. I am curious.


I honestly wouldn’t be able to get to this book for some months but the topic is certainly “right up my alley” and, from a ‘scouting distance’, it seems Lent has indeed put together a compelling case. If perspectives from similar territory covered be allowed, I would be honored to participate in whatever way I could.


I’m with TJ on this one. I doubt I’d be able to get to this till most likely October (and depending on how the Axial Age reading is progressing by then). It’s long (Amazon says 569 pages), so a teaser session may be in order, but a complete reading would take some organization, that’s for sure.


@care_save introduced this book to the Reading Suggestions thread about this time last year and I too felt it would be a worthwhile group deep-read and would make for a great comparative study of recent and past (and future) explorations. I posted this proposal unbeknownst to Caroline (I don’t know if this is what you meant by sponsoring others…!), but I think she can handle the pressure to take the lead on introducing this massive book and concept to the Café :exploding_head: I will leave it up to Caroline to determine the content and the time for this Café and we can take it from there.

As previously discussed in other threads, such as the Patterning Language proposal, the current Café time slot need not be the sole, official Café time slot. I like @achronon observation that the Café need not be imagined as an institution but as a format. In my imagining, the Cosmos Café table is just a location in a fully public park with a dazzling menu selection open to anyone anytime and open to any ideas from anyone at anytime . . . just note that someone might have reserved a time to sit there (though you are still welcome to have a seat), so it good practice to check in with the communal calendar attendant (Marco or Doug) to see when a spot is open.


I hope Carolyn will do an appetizer for us at the Cafe. Maybe a longer study will emerge out of that. We have just started doing The Axial Age and I have noticed that a small group of sponsors, rather than one person making a pitch, may create more of a consistent performance. If a core group is established and has feet upon the ground, we can gaze up at the stars, and have an interesting experience. The longer term effort of the reading group are not easy to maintain without a committed core group. It is better not to start a big project rather than start a big project and fizzle. We need safe to fail experiments. I already have too many unfinished reading projects, I don’t need anymore of them. A group should motivate us to actually finish a difficult book and help us complete some distinctions. This is happening but it is not magic. It is actually hard work!

I have a concern that is just coming up. Please, let us not become an information dump. We have all the information we will ever need. Completing distinctions is become a pressing need as more and more research is making less and less sense. This is difficult to monitor as experts are in such a muddle. More people popping in to rally around a pet project is fine as long as we have enough stability. I am mindful of when we start to wobble, as we try to lift something heavy when there are few persons really concentrating. You are only as effective as the other person’s attention. Most people, as Tim Morton says, are getting ready to change the channel. Let’s do something different.

I hope we continue to make a solid effort to stabilize attention spans. Changing the time of the events may open up opportunities, while shutting down others. It is a mixed blessing, this asynchronous world. There is no freedom without constraints. Are there some patternings detectable in this meta- message? I’m not sure.

Let’s keep Book Culture alive! Thanks for everyone’s valiant efforts.


it did arrive today, so though on the back burner for now, count me in when it is time to turn the heat up… :grinning:


Hello all, just seeing this all now. Grateful and humbled for the various expressions of “sponsorship” here. Thank you.

October sounds like fine timing to start this. And if you can fit me in to a nearby Cafe for an intro to the text I’d be happy to do so. Let’s schedule that, anyhow.

Happy for the interest, as this book is one of a few seminal texts serving as the platform for the book I am trying to produce one day–as soon as possible, which could be years, but still, it is very much on my mind. I’d love to be party to others’ processings of this book. And I concur with @patanswer that we should & could integrate other perspectives on the same subjects into the reading – would appreciate and accept help organizing that aspect. The book really lends itself to an inquiry about these “cognitive structures” historically and cross-culturally, one which I’ve yearned to deepen since reading it.