1. CONQUEST AND OWNERSHIP OF AND LEADERSHIP FROM THE INNERMOST CENTER ACROSS CULTURES
2. GLOBAL CULTURE SYSTEM ANALYSIS: SUSTAINABILITY AND ACCOUNTABILITY
3. SOME PRACTICAL INTER- AND TRANSCULTURAL MANAGEMENT TECHNIQUES AND INSTRUMENTS
4. SPECIAL INTERCULTURAL AND TRNASCULTURAL MANAGEMENT TERMINOLOGY
Copyright © Gebhard Deißler 2012
Interkulturelles- u. Transkulturelles Management (German)
Intercultural Transcultural Management (English)
Gestion Interculturelle et Gestion Transculturelle (French)
Gerencia Intercultural y Gerencia Transcultural (Spanish)
Gerência Intercultural e Gerência Transcultural (Portuguese)
跨文化的智慧精髓 - kua wen hua de zhi hui jing sui (Chinese)
транскультурная компетенция - transkulturnaja
toransukaruchā ・ manējimento (Japanese)
トランスカルチャー ・ マネジメント
Vishua Chaytana (Sanskrit)
ZAKAA AL-TA'ALOF AL-THAQAFEE (Arabic)
1. Conquest and Ownership of and Leadership from The Innermost Centre Across Cultures
In the following I would like to explore how the body and the mind can be attuned in an optimum way. It is really not enough to focus on values and behaviours alone, for our human body which has been given to us along with a most definite and definitive design or genetic programming with regard to structures and functions of each atom of the whole is contained in each one of billions of cells. This human body is the primary screen and vehicle through which we interact with our diverse environments and encounter cultural diversity. The body is our primary vehicle of experience and expression, the material support of life. Therefore it is life itself. It is most directly exposed to the outside world, to the struggle with other, sometimes competing forms of life, to the power games, we play, exacerbated by cultural diversity and human ignorance, 'avidya' as the Vedic sages termed it already thousands of years ago summarily. This struggle for survival affects the physical integrity, our structural edifice. And due to the organic interconnectedness of the human biological system as a whole, the energetic and mental structures are affected in turn. Therefore, interferences at one level have repercussions on all other levels. The games between cultures, groups and individuals can undermine and attempt to deprive the other(s) from their legitimate rights, appropriate 'otherness' instead of respecting it, owning it but not legitimately possessing it. A form of neo-cannibalism! This predator instinct is obviously neither ethical nor legal. Interference with others' legitimate rights, the extreme form of which is cannibalism, more modern forms may be mobbing or more subtle symbolical, implicit attempts, to wield power over others to one's advantage. This is a universal issue. Culture simple provides more fuel and exacerbates the universal problem. In Eastern psychology, the mind is material. So, mind and body are a continuum governed by similar laws. In that sense the notion of mental software makes no sense, because it is a limited concept, a fragment of the whole which as a fragment cannot account for the whole. An interaction is a total interaction, whose impact we are obviously trying to contain if it negatively affects our structural identity, impacting all systems, soma, energy and psyche. The corruption of their interconnected integrity is actually the real problem, no matter in what subsystem of the body it starts. So, we really have to look at all the biological systems in their integrity. The assumption that some mental software runs the human hardware is extremely culture-contingent and of the beginning of the computer age one-dimensionality. While we respectfully acknowledge the pioneering work, we now have to take further steps.
We have to look at the entire continuum of man, one pole being the angel, the other the ape, as the poet would frame it, in order to reconcile and transcend this metaphor of the overall human condition. In an intercultural overlap situation cultural patterns tend to assert and reinforce themselves through cultural networking and agenda-contingent alliances (le jeu des alliances). Having the other interactants shoulder the load of the interfacing process requires less effort. When naturally evolved cultural patterns are imposed different rhythms, the individual or collective entities get out of tune, the 'structures-functions' fit equation is impaired. Stress occurs, and if corruption sets in survival reflexes appear, resulting in culture clash, which, unmanaged, can escalate. The recognition and the respect of the difference are the first sensible steps to prevent this process. Gradual adaptation should set in leading to forms of reconciliation, thus preserving the various identities involved. Identity, continuity and stability - highlighted by the capacity to adapt, the capability of neutralizing disturbances from within or without, and of maintaining the organism's overall integrity - are an imperative of life. Integrity and non-integrity cannot be reconciled, being or not being are not a dilemma, no continuum, with no perspective of reconciliation. Talking about stability, integrity and enhanced performance I would like to contrast and integrate an Eastern physiological approach with a Western psychological approach and show how they can be reconciled:
Let's start with the HUMAN PYRAMID, the ideal human configuration in East Asia, notably in Japan, while we keep in mind that it is a metaphor. Symbolisms should not be taken literally and the literal should not be taken symbolically. What does this human pyramid look like in the Asian tradition in particular. It forms a triangle, sitting on a reliable, stable, broad base and pointing upward vertically. It symbolizes the human architecture, grounded on the best possible basis. It does not only refer to the outer structure, the anatomy and physiology, outer structures and functions, but also to what is largely neglected in Western approaches, namely the inner structure, the energetic structure. While Japan has championed this ideal man, it finds its corollary across cultures, in the Siddhasana or Lotus position or the perfect posture of the Vedic and yogic traditions of South Asia, the kneeling in the Christian tradition and so forth. Coordinated sitting on chairs is displayed in Ancient cultures like Egypt. Differences in cultural values and anatomies lead to different approaches to the same quest. It requires some deeper awareness to discern what is beyond the form, to perceive the Gestalt, to use a Western term. The Japanese might conceptualize it in terms of taiheki (polarization of vital energy) or 'seitai' (physical coordination) on which this posture has a decisive influence. In both the East Asian Human Pyramid ideal as well as in the South Asian Lotus or Siddhasana (perfect posture) ideal there are inner and outer structures involved, anatomic and energetic structures, an energetic anatomy, so to speak. Laya Yoga and the Shakta Vedanta of the Indian Vedic tradition as well as Zazen in the Japanese Zen Buddhist tradition, Chang in the Chinese tradition deal with the issue more specifically.
However, it must be stated emphatically that any experimentation by non-experts is dangerous.
As a matter of fact all cultures and in particular the religions and more specifically their esoteric rather than their exoteric branches have raised the question of the conditioning of the physical terrain in view of mental deconditioning. For millennia cultures have been aware of the interconnectedness of the spiritual-psycho-somatic continuum of man as a whole and that the whole had to be accounted for rather than its fragments. For if we want to understand mental programmes we have to understand the mind and the latter can be understood more fully if we consider its entire biological context, the terrain as a whole. It is more complex than a specialist approach but it allows us to contextualize the search in a new way.
We want to ask, how the diverse members of the body, inner and outer, can be configured so as to reduce the weight of conditioning, including cultural conditioning, how the body, the heart and mind can be configured, so as to reduce conditioning and thereby open up a new chapter in the quest for cultural intelligence (CQ), which could be applied practically to leadership across cultures and leverage transcultural intelligence. It is yet another perspective on the mosaic of perceptions of culture in order to perceive the bigger picture.
Let's return to the Human Pyramid, an East Asian master model of man: any system should have a maximum stability, to assure its continuity and stability. Considering the three possible states of stability, namely, stability, metastability and instability, it is surely stability,
which offers the optimum conditions for continuity and effectiveness. This highest possible integration and consolidation clearly satisfies a Japanese value preference of high level safety and reliability, an ideal terrain for sensing and intuition. While the Indian Siddhasana prepares the terrain ideally for the spiritual journey, which is an Indian metaphysical value preference, the Japanese ideal on the other hand translates a more physical value preference. And, with regard to both architectures, the inner and the outer, the energetic as well as the biological, to use a broader term, strive to align and reinforce their maximum stability and dynamism by themselves and synergize at the highest somato-energetic consolidation and integration. The two configurations, the Human Pyramid as well as the Perfect Posture of the two Asian traditions of India and Japan involve two triangle structures: a horizontal one that forms the base with the two knees and the buttocks. On this base triangle a vertical triangle is formed by the vertical axis of the backbone with the trunk, with the head on top, thus forming a pyramid, the Human Pyramid. The structure and dynamics involved in this posture consolidate the entire human edifice physiologically and energetically. While physiology and energy are coordinated and integrated, the mind is stilled and stabilized in turn, due to the mind-body interconnectedness. In this 'ventrocentric' approach the entire psychosomatic system is coordinated and stilled. The waves of the mind subside, tension goes. When the noise of the mind with all its conditionings is quiet, cultural conditioning is no more. It is in a state of potentiality. The cultural impact decreases proportionally to the increase of the stilling of the mind. Thus managing the mind in a bottom up approach, culture and cultural programming can be managed effectively. So, there is also a physiological approach to the management of culture.
As interculturalists, we want to see, whether we can transpose the model of maximum stability and efficiency to the mental level, where our cultural conditioning is supposed to be located. While the former approach to cultural deconditioning is an Eastern approach, starting with the body, technically the 'ventrocentric' approach, the mental approach privileging the neocortical circuits, starting with the mind, may be called a 'cerebrocentric'' approach corresponding to a more Western tradition.
Indeed, as by now we are used to thinking in triads, we can now construct, with or without the preparation and achievement of an integrated physiological terrain, which is a lifelong undertaking requiring one-pointed effort and Asian patience and perseverance. Western cultures evolve in smaller time horizons and will prefer shorter term, faster achievements. The following model might therefore be more appealing to the Western mind. Let's call it 'cerebrocentric' approach as opposed to 'ventrocentric' approach. Some Eastern approaches symbolically portray the Western approach as a reversed triangle with the base on top and the top at the base, to point out the comparatively lower degree of consolidation of the 'cerebrocentric' approaches, implying instability. As I design this model myself, for my part I would claim a correctly stabilized triangle with the base at the base and the top at the top. Indeed stabilization will be a key quest in this search.
At the psychological level we can identify and design a triangle with the conventional notions of IQ (intellect) at one pole of the base of the mental triangle and EQ (emotional intelligence) at the opposite pole. If the two poles are successfully reconciled, it results in a fairly balanced human being in Western culture terms. Yet, the 'dance' on this continuum is necessarily imperfect. It breeds terrorists, fanatics and dictators, as we know. Therefore it needs enhancing by a third corrective coordinate, which accounts for our relativity, which helps us not to commit grave faux pas in the 'dance of life', not to deviate and to become biased. In order to effectively use our mental and emotional potentialities, we need the third coordinate, CQ (cultural intelligence), to design the top of the triangle, which allows us to integrate, balance and objectify the various forms of intelligence as an IECQ enhanced intelligence model. While it provides a corrective for our cultural relativity and a compass whose needle always points to truth, objectivity and clear perception, it provides much needed structure, balance and direction.
If we now consider IECQ as the angles of a base triangle, we can erect the noetic vertical dimension at its centre with NQ (noetic intelligence) to result in transcultural intelligence:
TCQ (Transcultural intelligence) based on its neurophysiologic integrative status is the absolute centre of integration and control of the various forms of intelligence, the mind.
While the former physiological or ventrocentric model is a quest for the optimum base for control and coordination, the latter psychological or 'cerebrocentric' model symbolizes the quest for the top for optimum integration, deconditioning and growth.
Now that we could integrate physiology and biology through V (ventrocentrism) and the mind through transcultural or noetic intelligence TCQ or NQ (cerebrocentrism) the question arises, whether the two centers, the two pyramids, can be aligned and synergized. Indeed, the psychological and the somatic structures, according to the neurophysiologic law of subordination and integration, referred to repeatedly, find their control level in the superordinate noetic function, which integrates and controls both the subjacent psychological and the somatic level as the holistic enhanced biological noetic-psycho-somatic structure of man which has been the tenor of various exposés. The noetic dimension allowed us to design a vertical triangle and to connect the IECQ (intellectual, emotional, cultural intelligence) base triangle to NQ (or noetic intelligence) resulting in a pyramid. And far from becoming hybrids, it is the solution of the East-West dilemma, the East-West integration in a third creative, scientifically sound way, that integrates and surpasses the potentialities of East and West by themselves alone, and opens up a new chapter of transculturalism, hitherto thought of as an insoluble dilemma.
The realization of the IENCQ (intellectual, emotional, cultural, transcultural or noetic intelligence) psychological pyramid allows us to integrate time (we live in the eternal present) and space (in the here and now), the finite and the infinite potentialities. Such a formula alone is worthy of the human race at the threshold of the third millennium. Why, how? Through the awareness of the time-conditioning axis in the psychological model you are aware of your entire socialization, biography and conditioning whose product you are in the here and now. This encompasses the finite world of the mind, while the noetic 'macro-dimension' transcends the finite world of time, culture and conditioning. It unlocks the infinite (potentialities) in a consolidated body.
This is the type of intelligence, that processes culture and conditioning correctly and effectively, using it or transcending it at will and as need may be. We can call it IECNQ enhanced intelligence model, a balanced intelligence with a superordinate control that integrates the psychological model and the physiological model in turn.
To simplify let's reduce the pyramids to triangles and the triangles to simple coordinates. As can be seen in the diagram below, the physical intelligence and the mental/emotional intelligence are synergized and integrated and enhanced by noetic intelligence. It constitutes a holistic human intelligence model. Thus the terrain, the psyche and the spirit are perfectly aligned with an absolute command and control function, to manage cultural conditioning at the national, corporate or individual level. You may use this pristine intelligence to manage culture or your spiritual quest alike. Noetic or transcultural intelligence (transcultural in the sense of transcending culture and therefore the mind) is that incorruptible centre that integrates the soma and the psyche while it provides the resources for transcultural management, the most powerful capabilities.
A HOLISTIC HUMAN INTELLIGENCE MODEL
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2. Global Culture Systems Analysis: Sustainability and Accountability
There are different ways of describing the macrosystem of cultures, of human civilization as it were, with its myriads of cultures and kaleidoscopes of diversity. While there has been done interesting work, the task ahead remains monumental yet, for, as for instance, in the fields of astronomy, biology, botany, zoology, every day new creatures, stars or planets, new galaxies, new universes may be discovered, man being part of this vast universe of nature of creation will be governed similarly by an infinite degree of fractal diversity, for the dialectics of diversity seem to be a design principle of the global supercosmic system. If this design principle is not properly understood, with its complementary pole of unity, which entails the noetic intelligence we have been postulating, it causes much grief to humanity. If we do not penetrate to the root, all inter-cultural expertise will forever be engaged in managing fragments over and over again, until, tired of the non-sustainable solutions, which may benefit intercultural experts and other stakeholders in the issue of culture strive, they will surrender by force of evidence or insight to the higher truth, which must be approached from the root and holistically.
There are many ways of clustering cultures according to different criteria of the researcher. My I propose the ALG-system of clustering cultures as an approximation to the whole. It is pragmatic and simple and uses the language of the time. ALG, reminding us of programming logic, of alg orithms, stands for:
A frica, A sia, A rabia, A nglo, L atin and G ermanic
AAAALG or short ALG
The culture ALGorithm
l is customizable: you can stretch the radii to regionally differentiate the big culture areas.
l Highlights the bipolarization of the world in interpenetrating complementary triads of emergent (Africa, Asia, Arabia) and developed countries (Anglo-, Latin, Germanic)
l Focuses on the present day Anglo - Arab-Islamic culture divide: culture-clash
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Is a manager-centered culture-clustering, connecting the inner and the outer worlds of culture
Diagramme: ALG-culture clustering (representation on previous page)
Triad: Developed countries (cultures)
Rev. triad: Emergent countries (cultures)
Circle: Further refinement
It is easy to memorize the ALG-clustering, with some key attributes as a first holistic approach to culture. The practical use of it is that in a way, as transculturalists, we can position ourselves at the center at an equidistance, where the macro-system software is located, the algorithms permeating all subsystems of the macro-system, as well as the awareness, knowledge and skills of the researcher; the programming and conditioning that has generated the algorithm at the hardware level of culture, so to speak, the visible observable differences in behaviour. This centre is the center which has the power to integrate the inner and the outer space: the combination of noetics and equidistance for optimum transcultural efficiency of the researcher and global leader. The practical purpose is to remain centered amidst diversity, in the eye of the hurricane, instead of being drawn hither and thither by internal and external forces, in terms of sympathy and antipathy, self- and other-conditioning. It may be the most strategic positioning in the inner and outer space alike, the subjective and the objective, in order to work impartially, objectively with the necessary analytical distance while empathy is not excluded, because the transcultural manger is guided by altruism for the whole. The deep-seated, strongly emotional and evaluative nature of cultural conditioning can thus be managed without effort. This mooring and anchoring amidst the clashing waves of the ocean of diversity is imperative as a rock of ultimate incorruptibility, integrity and safety, while managing the inner and outer space and it helps not to get dragged out.
It is possible to enhance the ALG-algorithm and complete it by squaring it with the cultures you may have to cover additionally: squaring metaphorically, geometrically and conceptually.
And you may additionally be able to square the circle of cultures by actually centering the construct in a real circle as a symbol of wholeness and completeness to account for anything you may feel has been omitted. If you like you can add more outer perimeters to add strategic dimensions depending on your values and needs for greater effectiveness and sustainability of the work you may be required to accomplish.
From systems analysis we know, that any system has to be in a state of relative equilibrium to function smoothly and sustainably. The diverse components of the system should be in a state of homeostasis so as to ensure functionality. Connecting the notions of systems analysis and culture analysis, inter-cultural management research allows the investigation as to what modifications in the system or parts of the system affect and modify parts of the system or the system as a whole; the interplay between the parts of the whole, the whole and its constitutive parts, to put it simply. For, in this day and age, cultures are open systems, susceptible of receiving and having to absorb myriad inputs, which are even hard to exclude by ideological and traditional systems. Just think of the metamorphosis, Chinese managerial approaches are displaying these days through Western inputs. These desired or undesired inputs, according to systems analysis will have to be processed by the system so as to achieve a new state of equilibrium, which has been destabilized transiently by the incoming inputs. This culture systems analysis approach allows us to describe and conceptualize the interfacing of the cultural subsystems vertically and horizontally, involving the culture system components macro-culture, regional, national, local and individual culture entities. The ALG macro-system software at the center, which pervades all subsystems, allows to describe the active principle at all systems levels top to bottom right down to its smallest component. Culture as the result of myriad transactional processes is a multidimensional dynamic phenomenon resulting from multi-channel flows in all directions. Input, output, feedback is the simple systems analysis approach to analyze a concrete scenario of culture change effectively. Global cultures analysis is a monumental task, because all the culture systems interact and have a greater or lesser impact on the homeostasis of the system as a whole. When, due to powerful inputs the system as a whole is destabilized, one may talk of a culture crisis. Culture itself, ecological survival issues, bioscience issues affecting the biological integrity of man may be such powerful inputs. The culture systems analysis approach allows us to study the behaviour of any subsystem, based on the input-output-feedback cybernetic principle to systematically forecast, plan and control culture change, so as to preserve viable societies. Why should a harder science systems management approach not complement the art of culture management? It is the logical further step of the assumption of the existence of a mental software, the description of the whole field in cybernetic terms, while we are fully aware that we are using this digital culture-contingent paradigm. It is the language which matches the evolution of 21st century human civilization and is therefore accessible even and particularly to the young generations who will have to develop sharper cultural intelligence, while it objectifies deep rooted emotional conflict potentialities, because the inter-cultural dimensional reference frameworks used by many consultants and managers largely frame emotional preferences. Understanding and conceptualizing culture by objectifying it defuses the emotional intensity of the interfacing process chemistry. Educationists, social planners, supranational institutions, brief the UN with its agencies may benefit from a noetic, systems approach enhancing their own methods. If the culture challenge is here to stay in the 21st century, one might even think of a UN based global culture management special task force, a strategic planning and management unit, which as a military joint chief of staff composed of experts from all cultures centralizes the cultural data of the culture systems of the world for strategic planning and management of global culture issues. The material and human cost of it would be insignificant compared to alternative approaches to culture conflict resolutions at a global scale and befits civilized man, which many cultures make the assumption, they are. It would be an additional step out of the cave, metaphorically speaking, from the ape to the angel in man, towards an equalization of the inner and outer, the psychological and material evolution of man. With global availability of evidence with regard to the culture and ecological threat, all players are henceforth accountable to themselves, to future generations, to human society at large and the Creator of this wonderful house of humanity with its endless diversity. Hygiene and the management of the inner space as well as that of the outer space are the two compartments of the house of our human existence, which we have to account for all of us, for the inner and outer ecology are interconnected. Not one single person or state can assume the burden of culture change alone.
3. SOME PRACTICAL INTER- AND TRANSCULTURAL MANAGEMENT TECHNIQUES AND INSTRUMENTS
(1) The ORJI Model (Ed Schein) – Observation-Emotional Response-Judgement-Initiative - highlights the importance of continuous checking and questioning routines in intercultural encounters in order to effectively manage intrapsychic processes.
(2) The MIS (misperception-misinterpretation-misevaluation) Factor Process (N. Adler) highlights the culture contingency of perception and how it is processed. Empathy and cybernetic thinking to manage the diverse perceptual cultural filters are helpful.
(3) The PIE (perception-interpretation-evaluation) Metaphor highlights the need that the various phases of the intrapsychic process management in the intercultural interfacing process must be kept apart.
The integration of items 1-3 is visualized in a multi-model on the following page.
The application of all instruments can be greatly enhanced if they are correlated to what has been shown in other chapters. They are to be contextualized in a superordinate understanding of culture with all-integrative impact, i.e. the inter-transcultural complementarity that underpins a metaphorical “quantum cultural effect”.
Culture and Self: Multi-Modelling Intrapsychic Processes
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(4) The aggregate models of culture (ex. Hofstede) highlight the fact that there is a cultural pre-programming. This knowledge allows predicting and adapting to attitudes, values and behaviours if used flexibly and accounting for variances.
(5) Dilemma theory (Adler and Trompenaars and Hampden-Turner) highlights the possibility of creating synergies from conflicting values based on the multi-step process for dilemma resolution of these authors.
(6) The interpretivist paradigm or the negotiated culture approach (Brannen and Salk) highlights the assumption that aggregate models of culture as those of Hofstede and Trompenaars and Hampden Turner have limited predictive power as cultures are normal distributions, prototypes rather than stereotypes. This differentiation and additionally accounting for a maximum amount of contextual variables allows a dynamic approach to the management of emergent organizational cultures.
(7) Fusion: This strategy allows for the simultaneous existence of more than one cultural approach with the benefit that one may provide initially unsuspected feedback and a complement to the other. - But Fusion can also be understood as a return to the source of life, where neither time nor space, nor thought nor person A nor person B, everything and nothing, exist. Here culture and its barriers do not arise. Cultural differences may at times be perceived as increasing interpersonal distance and thereby creating an additional obstacle to the deep-rooted need of fusion, of oneness with life itself. The awareness of the relevance of fusion may in some instances defuse culturally induced confusion... Though it may seem necessary at times to create distance, an ultimate Christian rationale also is Unity: ”Ut unum sint”, Christ Himself says to God the Father: “That all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you.. .“ (John 17 : 21). Integral individuals mystically one?
(8) When in Rome do as the Romans do. This is a more general approach and adage which does not stick rigidly to the home culture, while the next approach number 9 places great store on the home culture while it borrows useful elements of target cultural environment.
(9) Cross-fertilization: Builds on the biological principle of adaptation for survival. In this sense a globalizing corporation may adopt some of the DNA of another culture to navigate challenging phases and environments.
(10)To the Greek become a Greek. This is the precept of Saint Paul, a Christian approach, which can be said to be the royal path to winning people’s hearts and minds.
(11)In-depth understanding that literally sees through the game of culture in the sense that in certain cases each culture positions itself as the absolute and thereby relativizes the other culture and frequently expects her to pay the cost of the interfacing process.
(12)The art of seeing. Choiceless awareness (J. Krishnamurti). It complements cognitive seeing through a situation or someone by the art of pure perception with its own mental hygiene and power.
(13)Consciousness evolution and cultural development diagnostic (Dr. Th. Brosse and M. Bennett). See Evolution Profile in the Transcultural Management Profiler. The human evolution and the intercultural development stages allow a quick diagnostic as to the possible range of attitudes values and behaviours.
(14)Transcultural or noetic intelligence. This approach is based on the highest functions of a threefold hierarchical holistic architecture of man; from bottom to top: (1) the somatic, (2) the psychic and (3) the noetic. This three-level architecture of man features a top to bottom integration and control logic. Cultural conditioning is stored in the psychic level, the mind. Based on the neurophysiologic hierarchical integration and control principle, the noetic or transcultural level integrates the mental or cultural level.
(15)Culture is all about experiencing relationships - with oneself, others, the visible and the invisible environment -. Consider whether culture is used as a pretext to feed greed in relationships. How much culture does the (healthy) self and selflessness require? Culture can be strongly relativized by the self: from fundamentalism to quantité négligeable.
(16)Strive to establish your identity, physical as well as metaphysical, through true (self-) knowledge, which enfolds and transcends cultural conditioning, as taught by the world’s traditions and expressed in Greek as “Gnothi seauton”, in Latin as “Nosce te ipsum”, in Sanskrit as “Vidya”, in the Christian tradition, the epistles of St. Paul contain informative metaphors about the nature of man and his relationship with his fellow man and the divine. Self-awareness training in western management education is a step in this direction.