The Interbeon

7 min read


Kurt Lewin said, “There is nothing is practical as a good theory.”

If ever the world needed a good theory, the time is now. Consider terrorism, nuclear proliferation, global warming, a fragmenting Common Market, wars and consequent immigration, economic inequality, failing political systems, unbridled globalization, economic inequality, scandal-driven media, banking systems that steal people’s money, fundamentalism-driven politics, education inadequacies, dysfunctional relationships, and breakdowns in community, social and family systems that have traditionally bound us together.

In his recent MIT commencement address, Actor Matt Damon shared advice that President Bill Clinton had passed along to him a decade ago; “Turn toward the problems that you see.., you have to engage.” The problems most of us see are so widespread, complex and interactive, it’s hard to think about this, or even some of it, without becoming confused and victimized. The desire to make a difference is in desperate need of a good theory that is more than intelligent and abstract; one that actually turns the pain into constructive and effective advice, coaching, and action.

I recently did an intensive personal development session for a Vancouver physicist. At a point I told him of my experience watching the space adventure movie Interstellar, and how they were somehow able to include General Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, Space Time, Gravity, and Love at the same time and in the same story, with no contradiction. Wouldn’t it be great, I imagined, if people could work and be together in ways that allow contradictions in political points of view, religious beliefs, economic systems, and relationships to exist together without opposition, to communicate and build bridges without violence. He said that in Physics, if a theory wasn’t working quite the way it should, if there was a wiggle or wobble in the observations as a continuing circumstance, a scientist would invent a particle and insert it theoretically into the model, and sometimes, in testing, the wobble would go away. It struck me that there could be a similar particle missing in human beings and human affairs that would allow for the harmony and effectiveness so many of us seek. I named this particle the “Interbeon.”

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