DSRP is new but some of the concepts that it is based on have been around for a long time.
The astute reader, trained in systems science or systems thinking, might conclude that DSRP is not new, and to some extent they would be right. In the simplest of terms, DSRP explains that in both nature and mind, “stuff is grouped and interrelated from a frame of reference.” All of the concepts in that sentence have been around for some time, although not always integrated together in an elegant way. 20th Century founders of systems science, cybernetics and complexity (e.g., , Bogdonov , von Bertalanffy , Angyal , Weiner , Ashby , Weaver , and Prigogine ) spoke of elements, interactions, wholes, and frames of reference in various ways but not together as a theoretical construct.
But DSRP goes much farther than this set of principles because it explains the specific structures involved and the dynamics between the structures. Indeed, DSRP tells us that even a single identity (an element or object of any kind) cannot exist without entailing an “other” non-element or at least ‘not-that-element,’ thereby creating a boundaried distinction. To define an identity mandates an action-reaction relationship to an other. Further, DSRP explicates that these interrelated elements entail a part-whole grouping or ‘System.’ Finally, DSRP explicates that a point-view Perspective (or frame of reference) is required because the other has been defined in terms of the identity.
This means that in order for any identity to exist, all four structures of DSRP, each with two elements (identity-other, part-whole, action-reaction, and point-view), are necessary and sufficient. In other words, for any thing to exist—either in mind or in nature—all of DSRP is necessary and sufficient. The same DSRP structure we just described at the microscale for a single thing to exist, carries out fractally across scale into larger and larger complexes of things both in mind and in nature.
Incidentally, long before anyone spoke of the phenomena of DSRP, your mind and nature had already been doing it for a very long time...
It is important to be careful not to be revisionist in our history (by applying a 2021 bias to a turn of the century writer). Doing so, the overlaps between DSRP and earlier writers are relatively clear. The Patterns of DSRP (D, S, R, P) provide, generally speaking, that “stuff is grouped and interrelated from a frame of reference.” All of the concepts in that sentence have been around for some time, although not always integrated together in an elegant way. 20th Century founders of systems science, cybernetics and complexity (e.g., , Bogdonov, von Bertalanffy, Angyal, Weiner, Ashby, Weaver, and Prigogine) spoke of elements, interactions, wholes, and frames of reference in various ways but, more often than not, not together as a theoretical construct. Bogdonov's Tektology hits on elements, interactions, wholes and even frames.
What DSRP Theory does is bring these disparate concepts together as an integrated theory. But most importantly, it then extends the specificity of the structure and dynamics significantly with the co-implicative elements (i-o, p-w, a-r, p-v) and the rules that cause their fractal and modular dynamics and dependencies. As a side note, the theoretical work of DSRP has also been buttressed with empirical findings, making these concepts empirical in both mind and nature; whereas before they existed more in the realm of philosophy and opinion.
Probably one of the most common misconceptions people have of DSRP Theory is that it is merely a description of the 4 Patterns (D,S,R,P). But like I said, the four patterns themselves have been around for a long time (although not integrated into a coherent theory). The crux of DSRP Theory is not these four patterns but the 8 co-implying Elements and their rule structure—that's where the theoretical implications of DSRP become clear.
The Patterns are just equivalencies:
D := i ↔ o
S := p ↔ w
R := a ↔ r
P := ρ ↔ v
And, the rules co-imply each other such that:
T(D∨S∨R∨P) → (D^S^R^P)
And, therefore that further co-implication exists at the Element level:
T(i∨o∨p∨w∨a∨r∨ρ∨v) → (i^o^p^w^a^r^ρ^v)
Those fractal/modular dynamics are not in Bogdonov's Tektology nor any previous work. Nor had any of these items been shown empirically in mind and nature.
References and Seminal Works
- Bogdanov A. Bogdanov’s Tektology Book 1. Dudley P, editor. Centre for Systems Studies University of Hull; 1996.
- Von Bertalanffy L. General system theory. Gen. Syst. 1956. pp. 11–17.
- Angyal A. The structure of wholes. Philos Sci. 1939;6: 25–37.
- Wiener N. Cybernetics: Or Control and Communication in the Animal and the Machine. New York: John Wiley and Sons, Inc.; 1948.
- Ashby WR. An introduction to cybernetics. 1956. doi:10.5962/bhl.title.5851
- Weaver W. Science and Complexity. American Scientist. 1948;36.
- Prigogine I. From Being to Becoming: Time and Complexity in the Physical Sciences. W. H. Freeman; 1980.