Kripal, Jeffrey – The Flip

  • poles. Poles are the underlying contradiction of a paradox and are conceptual and inert. They can appear as “digital” (i.e. mutually exclusive) or “analogue” (i.e. a continuum) – Cheal, 2012: 34
  • splits. Splits are active and cause the “paradoxee” to feel pulled in two or more directions or decisions. It can also feel that whichever option they take, they lose – Cheal, 2012: 35
  • loops. Loops are active and cause the “paradoxee” to feel like they are going round in circles, either ending up where they started or perhaps having lost a little or gained a little – Cheal, 2012: 35
  • flips. Flips are active and cause the “paradoxee” to feel like they ended up with the opposite to or negation of what they actually wanted or intended – Cheal, 2012: 35. Similarly, Kripal (2019: 12) defines the flip as “reversals of perspective” or, roughly, the reversals “from <the outside> of things to <the inside> of things, from <the object> to <the subject>”, and back again.
  • mind versus matter. Kripal distinguishes for the flips (a thing that is available also for the poles, splits and loops) between 1) mind (what is inside and subjective) and 2) matter (what is outside and objective). Certainly, Kripal mentions also a third and fourth distinction – namely 3) unus mundus (the totality which decomposes in mind and matter and which is composed of mind and matter). And between the unus mundus (the unity) – on the one side, and mind/ matter (the plurality) – on the other side, there are 4) the symbols (that can be found in mathematical and geometrical structures, as well as in stories and texts)

The map:


  • Joe Cheal (2012): “Solving impossible problems. Working through tensions and paradox in business”, GWiz Publishing
  • Jeffrey J. Kripal (2019): “The flip. Epiphanies of mind and the future of knowledge”, Bellevue Literary Press
  • Copleston, Frederick (1993): “A history of philosophy. Volume I. Greece and Rome”, Image Books, Doubleday

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