Martin Zwick Systematics Papers


Martin Zwick



Following are lists of my papers in systems theory and philosophy that have connections to Work ideas, especially to the ideas of John G. Bennett. In the A list below, the connections are relatively direct; in the B list, they're indirect. These papers are also accessible here; click on the Jump to Category pull-down menu and select Systems Theory and Philosophy. Under C is a more personal paper. Under D, I list a few pieces on Jewish themes that bear on inner work.  A website that lists these papers is at .

The website that has the papers at the links below has a glitch in it, so that sometimes clicking on the link gives an error message first, but then clicking on the link a second time works.




Ideas and Graphs (2018)

Zwick, Martin (2018). “Ideas and Graphs.” International Journal of General Systems, Vol 47, No. 7, 731-750.

An exposition of the relation of graph theory to Bennett’s systematics, primarily his tetrad.


Mind and Life: Is the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature False? (2016)

Zwick, Martin (2015) "Mind and Life: Is the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature False?." Biological Theory: 1-14.

A discussion of ‘mind’ that utilizes Bennett’s scheme of automatic, sensitive, and conscious energies.


Freedom as a Natural Phenomenon (2015)

Zwick, Martin (2015). “Freedom as a Natural Phenomenon.” Foundations of Science, Vol. 20, No. 3, DOI 10.1007/s10699-015-9433-z.

A characterization of ‘freedom’ using Bennett’s 3-2-1 triad and these three energies.


Levels of Altruism (2014)

Zwick, Martin and Fletcher, J. (2014). "Levels of Altruism." Biological Theory, March 2014, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp. 100-107: DOI 10.1007/s13752-013-0145-8.

Types of altruism schematized using the octave.


Complexity Theory and Political Change: Talcott Parsons Occupies Wall Street (2014)

Zwick, Martin (2014). "Complexity Theory and Political Change: Talcott Parsons Occupies Wall Street." In Complexity and the Human Experience, Modeling Complexity in the Human and Social Sciences, Paul A. Youngman & Mirsad Hadzikadic, editors, CRC Press, 2014, pp. 141-160.

Similarity of Parsons’ “action” to Bennett’s tetrad; some political implications.


Personal Knowledge and the Inner Sciences (2010)

Zwick, Martin (2010) "Personal Knowledge and the Inner Sciences." In Markus Locker, ed., Systems Theory and Theology: The Living Interplay between Science and Religion, pp. 49-61. Eugene: Pickwick Publications.

Conceptualizing inner work as science.


Holism and Human History (2009)

Zwick, Martin (2009) "Holism and Human History." Metanexus, July 19, 2009 (Cosmos, Nature and Culture: A Transdisciplinary Conference, Phoenix, Arizona). Reprinted in Metanexus, June 19, 2009.

Modeling human history using ideas from the octave and enneagram.


Systems Metaphysics: A Bridge from Science to Religion (2007)

Zwick, Martin (2007) "Systems Metaphysics: A Bridge from Science to Religion." Metanexus conference: Transdisciplinarity and the Unity of Knowledge: Beyond the Science and Religion Dialogue. June 2-6, 2007; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Reprinted in Metanexus, June 24, 2007.

Conceptions of ‘sacred isomorphisms’ and ‘inner science.’


Incompleteness, Negation, Hazard: On the Precariousness of Systems (1984)

Zwick, Martin (1984) "Incompleteness, Negation, Hazard: On The Precariousness Of Systems." Nature and System Vol.6. (1984). pp. 33-42.

A systems-theoretic exploration of Bennett’s ideas on hazard.


Some Analogies of Hierarchical Order in Biology and Linguistics (1978)

Zwick, Martin (1978) “Some Analogies of Hierarchical Order in Biology and Linguistics.” Applied General Systems Research: Recent Developments & Trends, edited by George J. Klir, New York: Plenum Press, 1978, pp. 521-529.

Structural parallelisms illustrating aspects of the octave.




Words and Diagrams About Rosenzweig's Star (2020)

Naharaim (2020); 14(1): 5-33.


Diachronics of Redemption: A Systems Theoretic View of Rosenzweig’s Star (2019)

Presented at "Back to Redemption," International Rosenzweig Society Conference, Feb. 17-22, 2019, Jerusalem, Israel.


Rosenzweig’s Star of Redemption and Systems Theory (2018)

Presented at the 70th Annual Northwest Philosophy Conference, Bellevue College, October 19-20, Bellevue WA.

Partially overlapping papers on Rosenzweig’s hexad, which is completely different from Bennett’s hexad.


Symbolic Structures as Systems: On the Near Isomorphism of Two Religious Symbols (2010)

In Markus Locker, ed., Systems Theory and Theology: The Living Interplay between Science and Religion, pp.62-96, Eugene: Pickwick Publications.

A systems theoretic examination of the similarity of two religious symbols.


The Diagram of the Supreme Pole and the Kabbalistic Tree (2009)

Religion East & West, the Journal of the Institute for World Religions, Issue #9, October 2009, pp. 67-87.

An earlier and abbreviated version of the above 2010 paper.


A Conversation on Theodicy (2008)

Metanexus, January 9, 2008.

A dialog that articulates the view that imperfection is a lawful consequence of hazard and that perfecting is our human responsibility.


A Book Review of Systems: New Paradigms for the Human Sciences (2001)

International Journal of General Systems.

A discussion of some dyads of opposing values.


Understanding Imperfection (2000)

World Congress of the Systems Sciences & 44th Annual Meeting of the International Society for the Systems Sciences, Toronto, July 16-22, 2000.

Further thoughts on Bennett’s ideas on hazard.


Towards an Ontology of Problems (1995)

Advances in Systems Science and Applications Inauguration Issue I, pp. 37-42.

Ontological implications of the lawfulness of imperfection.


Dialectics and Catastrophe (1978)

Sociocybernetics, 1978,1 pp. 129-154.

Relevance of dialectics, as interpreted via catastrophe theory, to some of Bennett’s systems.




Caravan of Stilts (2018)

Proceedings of the 23rd All and Everything 2018 International Conference, pp. 163-176.

An allegory based on the Gobi expedition in Meetings with Remarkable Men.




Jewish Mussar and Confucian Self-Cultivation (2019)

Western Jewish Studies Association meeting, Palm Desert, California, May 5-6 2019


Mussar and Spinoza (2016)

Western Judaic Studies Association meeting in Salem, Oregon, on April 20, 2016


Mussar and the Renewal of Judaism (2011)

Unpublished paper.

Mussar is a Jewish tradition of work on oneself.


Thoughts on Some Shabbat Prayers

Unpublished paper.

Some of these thoughts are Work-inspired.