‘Only mind can discover how to do so much with so little as forever to be able to sustain and physically satisfy all humanity’.
Writer Alvin Toffler once described architect theorist designer and futurist Buckminster Fuller as ‘one of the most-powerful myth-makers and myth-exposers of our time … a controversial constructive endlessly energetic metaphor-maker who sees things differently from the rest of us and thereby makes us see ourselves afresh’ — perhaps the richest and most accurate account of a mind to whom we owe more than we realize.
Today the concept of synergy permeates everything from boardrooms to artspeak to hipster dinner party chatter — but it was Fuller who coined it as cultural currency in pioneering the study of synergentics which concerns itself with the ‘behavior of whole systems unpredicted by the behavior of their parts taken separately’.
In “The Wellspring of Reality” the introductory essay to his seminal 1975 volume Synergetics: Explorations in the Geometry of Thinking (public library), Fuller decries specialization as the enemy of synergy and proposes a reframing of culture that could ‘get all of humanity to educate itself swiftly enough to generate spontaneous social behaviors that will avoid extinction’.
At its epicenter he places the value of wide curiosity and generalist knowledge.