Update to the model of living structure:

  • a system of centers
  • each center has some degree of life
  • every center is to some degree a picture of the self

Let us now consider a model that builds on the conception of I. In this model, I consider living structure as I have before, as a system of centers, each center having some different degree of life. The model is similar to the one presented in Book 1, especially as it is presented in chapters 3 and 4. But I now introduce one very important change. Let us also include the fact that every center in the system of centers is, to some degree, a picture of the self.

In Book 1, we spoke of the degree of life which different centers have. That is a structural matter. We now add the idea that each center has a degree of quality, an intensity of life according to the degree in which it is a picture of the self.

This model is consistent with two propositions which were introduced in Book 1: (1) that every living structure contains thousands of living centers, and (2) that every living center may be distinguished as living, to the degree that it is a picture of the eternal self. But, in Book 1, I did not go on to draw the conclusion that comes from these two propositions.

When we put these two propositions together, we can hardly avoid reaching the conclusion that every living structure is composed of thousands of pictures of the eternal self. In this model, a living structure, is not merely composed of thousands, or millions, of interacting centers. It is, equally, composed of millions of interacting pictures of the “I”.

(Page 74)

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