4.2. The Second Quadrant (II)

The first multiplicity

The Second Quadrant (II) comprises the primary division and marks a break with the static and undivided nature of the First Quadrant. The division-principle, which is ‘potentially’ present in the First, becomes active in the Second Quadrant. It means a transfer of information between partners within a particular frame of division.

This situation changes with the realization of the mechanism of division in combination with movement. The disintegration of the original unity prompts a primal communication. The arrival of multiplicity enables an interaction based on differences, which have been created and noted for the first time. The shift between parts of a division leads to transformations within the validation process. They are generally known as forms of ‘visibility’: the possibility to record differences and order them in a logic fashion.

The boundary between the First and Second Quadrant is clear and sharp. Both division and movement start their functional existence at the same time and place here. It is a moment of choice, not of development. Suddenly, when a certain stage of approach is reached within the First Quadrant, the nature of the unity changes dramatically.

Parts are recognized and motion is envisaged. At once, the number of the primary division and the nature of motion (linear or cyclic) is ‘seen’. In hindsight, when a higher form of division thinking is taken, it is possible to project some sort of ‘evolution’ in the creation of divisions – in the sequence from 1 – 2 – 3 – 4, etc. – but this is not the case. There is no ‘development’ in division thinking, nor in the choice of motion at the boundary of the First Quadrant, only an a priori. This brings us to a very important law in the understanding of a communication:

The division, which destroys the original unity, is set to govern the whole of the communication.

A communication which ‘opens’ in a two-division will continue in a mood of dualistic thinking, even if one of the partners tries to employ higher division thinking. Which brings us to another, equally important rule, which will later be of crucial significance in the calculations of communication values in a cyclic setting, namely that:

The level of division thinking within a communication is set by the partner employing the lowest division.

So the events at the boundary of unity are of vital consequence for the rest of the communication. There might be a particular growth or regression within the communication, but the highest level of insight will always be determined by the initial division at the boundary of the First and Second Quadrant. With this knowledge in mind – admittedly derived at in higher division thinking – it is better, if possible, to set the stakes as high as possible and aim at the highest division.

The principle of displacement opens a second possibility to a further visibility. A movement within the context of the newly found division gives various perspectives, which can be validated in a process of comparison. This valuation is, in its bare essence, the visibility itself.

Four mental steps are distinguished in the Second Quadrant, reflecting the quadralectic model of communication-as-a-whole:

——————— 4.2.1. A proto-communication

——————— 4.2.2. The first division

——————— 4.2.3. The valuation

——————— 4.2.4. The implementation

The numbers refer to the ensuing sub-chapters in which the various characteristics will be shortly described. The proto-communication carries the features of the First Quadrant (I), with the (invisible) invisibility as the main feature. The first division is the hallmark of the Second Quadrant (II), setting a communication in motion. The valuation is the achievement of the Third Quadrant (III). Boundaries are marked in the process, and the differences between parts are calculated. Finally, if all the tools are at hand, there is the implementation that keeps the mind going in the Fourth Quadrant (IV). The communication is at a level of its greatest understanding.

The major events of the Second Quadrant herald the nature of things to come. The whole communication (cycle) is already represented in the Second Quadrant (see also the ‘Tao of quadralectic thinking’ in the previous chapter). The layout of an interaction is known that very moment a division-decision has been taken. The situation can be compared with a person looking in a mirror with another mirror under a certain angle and discovering an endless repetition of images. Visibility looses itself in a perpetual repetition. The observer seems to disappear in a tunnel of infinite images.

The following short description of the four cognitive positions in the Second Quadrant is an introduction in the quadralectic way of thinking as a whole.


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