The fascinating difference in worldview is between a static and a process dominating perspective.
The static perspective is abstract, closed, isolating, passive, one-dimensional, and unchanging. The process perspective is contextualizing, open, relational, generative, and multi-dimensional.
Static and process perspectives interweave with each other. What appears static at one moment (for example, a mountain, a cup, or a piece of paper) is enveloped in webs of processes at other moments (for example, historically and cosmologically). The contextualizing process perspective therefore complements and integrates the also important static perspective. Both perspectives together form a dynamic balance.
However, if one perspective dominates a worldview, imbalances emerge. I would argue that many of today’s decision-making, our mainstream economic theories, our cultural and political institutions, how we conduct research and what solutions we consider, and how we relate to the more than human world are dominated by a static perspective. In my research, I refer to this as a mechanical worldview.
While much of these differences have been discussed from a philosophical perspective, especially since Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947), Iain McGilchrist shows how each perspective can predominantly be associated with one of the brain hemispheres. He argues that our society and systems were mostly designed to serve the left hemisphere and is one of the reasons why we live in such an unsustainable world. While the right hemisphere is contextual, process-oriented, and grasps the Gestalt, the left hemisphere zooms in and fixates on the detail.
I am beginning to sense that mycelium is a right hemispheric being. As Merlyn Sheldrake notes, the mycelium.
“actively senses and responds to its surroundings in unpredictable ways. Their hyphae are chemically irritable, responsive, and excitable. It is this ability to interpret the chemical emissions of others that allows fungi to negotiate a series of complex trading relationships with trees; to knead away at stores of nutrients in the soil; to have sex; to hunt, or to fend off attackers”.
Mycelium then contextualizes. It is open, and it is relational. Just what makes a process perspective.