What is an organising idea?
An organising idea pulls information together so the mind can make sense of it. The richer the pattern in the mind, the more 'true' the organising idea is.
In all areas of life confusion flourishes, mistakes are made and harm is done when we forget that the way we look at phenomena is dependent on an active effort of imagination and thinking. We are not mechanical recording instruments looking out on a fixed world. We organise what we see through what we believe we know.
“All scientific knowledge is a correlation of what is seen with the way that it is seen.”
Henri Bortoft in 'The Wholeness of Nature'
All the organising ideas in our head play an active role in shaping our perception and thinking and guiding our actions. An effective new organising idea is always larger than an earlier one because it can explain the anomalies that previously caused confusion.
The quality of the organising idea is determined by how much of reality it reveals.
When any field of study is confused, any political effort is failing, any conflict not being resolved, it usually means a larger new organising idea has to be introduced before a resolution to the problems can be found.
Since most people react in conditioned ways to events, it requires a particular set of skills and qualities to see what has never been seen before and thereby produce the new organising idea.
These are not necessarily the same skills that are needed to introduce the idea to enough people so it takes hold. A perfect example of this is the case of the man, Ignatz Semmelwiess, who recognised that doctors washing their hands between seeing patients and cleanliness were important in preventing high mortality rates in hospitals. He was driven mad because his colleagues couldn't see what he was going on about. But now we know his organising idea was correct and hygienic behaviour in hospitals has saved millions of lives.
Explore our articles and interviews
Listen to Brian Greene’s interview with Sue Saunders (Human Givens College tutor and Educational Director) as they discuss the HG approach to treating mental illness, human givens counselling and our training events.
James Tapper suggests that Charles Dickens’s famous seasonal novel contains much that reflects the human givens approach to therapy.
Ivan Tyrrell asks Professor Richard Noll, author of ‘The Jung Cult’, to unravel the lies Carl G Jung told to aggrandise himself and his charismatic psychoanalytic movement.
The fundamental new direction in therapy is more than just a set of new techniques explains Bill O'Hanlon in an article first published in 1995.
Treatmenta for schizophrenia that involve no drugs, or only low doses of them, urgently need investigation, suggests Dr Tim Calton, lecturer in psychiatry at the University of Nottingham, and colleagues.
Even though self-harm is discussed in the media, the subject of self-harming can still feel difficult to approach. Emily Gajewski's ‘From Self-harm to Self-belief’ one-day training course offers clear, research-based framework and practical skills, so you needn’t feel that way again….
Sian Withers shows how she makes very good use of the human givens approach thousands of feet up in the air.
John Bell suggests that only a radically different, innate needs-based approach to conflict resolution can bring a possibility of peace to the Middle East.
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Date posted: 01/03/2018
Brian Greene interviews HG College tutor Sue Saunders about the HG approach to treating mental illness and more... Listen here
Date posted: 26/02/2018