It began with a book, almost a lifetime ago
Way back in 1975, I chanced upon a wonderful little book hiding inside a ghastly dust jacket. Its title: Creative Action: the Making of Meaning in a Complex World.
Written by an industrial designer named Edward Matchett and featuring a 12-day programme for putting the principles of Creative Action into practice, this groundbreaking book prompted a long-running and wide-ranging inquiry into how the new comes into being, beyond models and methods.
The inquiry continues, with extensive study, thinking, discussion, experimentation, and real world application made possible by my work as an innovation practitioner.
Ted was a design engineer who transcended the confines of industrial design to develop methods of creativity of astonishing spiritual genius.
Many more books, then just a few
During the 1970s and 80s I built an extensive collection of non-fiction books covering a wide range of business-related topics such as strategy, leadership, marketing, problem solving, creativity, innovation and organisational change.
The collection also included a large number of titles of the sort you’d find in the Mind–Body–Spirit section of a decent bookshop. Authors included Alan Watts, Meg Wheatley, Caroline Myss, Peter Russell, Fritjof Capra, and Lau Tzu.
Then one day I decided it was time for the books to find new homes, and sold most of them to Watkins Books. Of the remaining few, these four occupy a corner of my desk:
In Talking with Angels, the created world and the creating world correspond with the tonal and the nagual (pdf) described by don Juan Matus in the Carlos Castaneda books and discussed by Tomas in Creative Victory.
Napoleon Hill’s fingerprints can be found on Edward Matchett’s works, and Matchett’s later writings were inspired in part by Talking with Angels (see here, pages 30 – 34). I don’t know if Matchett was familiar with Castaneda’s writings, but this is highly likely.
Curiously, there are echoes of the Angels’ teachings in the first edition of Creative Action, which was published in 1975, the year before Dialogues avec l’ange, the French language forerunner to Talking with Angels, appeared in print. This is a mystery, yet my entire relationship with Talking with Angels is beyond rational explanation.
The next diagram illustrates a fundamental Talking with Angels principle, and Newcreate would probably not exist had I never discovered it.
I made an intuitive leap from the seven souls (mineral, plant, animal etc.) to the Hindu system of subtle energy centres called chakras. View the Wikipedia entry for Chakra. Traditionally, these are numbered from the bottom (first or root chakra) to the top (seventh or crown chakra).
Later, I reinterpreted the chakras as a set of seven creative powers, located as illustrated below. The work required to fully understand the function of each power was carried out over the course of several years.
The locations of the seven powers match those of the chakras with the exception of Realisation, which I reassigned to the pelvic floor muscles as proxies for the reproductive organs. Also known as PC (pubococcygeus) muscles — we each have two, whether female or male — these control the flow of urine.
When the Newcreator has faith in his or her heart and is living in accord with intent — an unbending commitment to enriching the world through unconditional service — the seven creative powers combine to form three superpowers: power to transcend the mundane, power to create the new, and power to enrich the world with value, meaning and joy.
This is an embodied metaphor and does not need to be taken literally.
After a long gestation, Newcreate is born
Between January and June 2023, I pulled together my ideas and created the first iteration of this website, incorporating material associated with Now-to-New, a term I invented in the early 1990s.
Now-to-New is a way of thinking about, and talking about, turning the present situation (Now) into what is needed instead (New). It is a blanket term covering seven categories of work: creating, changing, solving, surmounting, responding, developing, and utilising. The seven categories are neither mutually exclusive nor collectively exhaustive.
Now, I mostly use the term create-the-new, but there are occasions when Now-to-New works better.
Read more about Now-to-New
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