Final Session: Practical Wisdom – Mindshifting


15.10 Ole Fogh Kirkeby (dk): Mindshifting

Ole Fogh Kirkeby is Professor of Philosophy at Copenhagen Business School. He will talk about practical wisdom and give a few examples of mindshifts that have occured during the last 200 years. Ole is a member of the Core Group of the project In100years.

Ole Fogh Kirkeby starts by presenting us with a long list of questions urging us to reflect. And he raises a polemic viewpoint regarding Mindset shifts: 

Is a mindset a closed set of existential questions and answers at the common sense level?

Who represents a mindset? Power, he answers. 

Karl Marx identified that.

A mindset is made up of:

  • Games of Experience
  • Language Games
  • Games of Knowledge
  • Games of Truth

Are these universal or limited by history, culture and the level of knowledge?

Can we distinguish between the structures of mindsets and how it all emerges?

The good, the true and the beautiful constitute the core values of our culture.

Is there a universal mind set?

“We are in an extreme situation of contingency” claims Ole Fogh Kirkeby.

Through a number of historical examples Ole Fogh Kirkeby illustrates that an ethical mindset change does not guarantee anything. There is no logic of wisdom in history.

Our world today is dominated by:

  • Ignorance
  • Indifference
  • Dogmatism
  • Egoism

The real problem today is: Property. It is the core of capitalism and it is the constitutional shape under which sustainability must be introduced. 

Reality means private property. Reality is a collection of substances. 

Equality comes from generosity. We look at the other person as a thing, as Marx identified. And we look at other people as something in which we can invest. But that is a mistake since people are beings which we have no right to conquer, exploit and give names. 

We have to get rid of property as the dominant factor and start respecting each other. 

My comments: An experienced philosopher who knows “Das Kapital” inside out agrees with a young architect who proposes to stop striving to posses property and  switch to sharing property. Ole Fogh Kirkeby explains why Dominic Balmforths approach is one that can set us free.

What are we waiting for?

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