I tweeted a link to a Forbes article on empathy this morning, “Want more innovative solutions? Start with empathy.” by Tracy Bower.
Boyd explained his notion of orientation on chart 15 of Organic Design (available from the Articles link, above):
Orientation is an interactive process of many-sided implicit cross-referencing projections, empathies, correlations, and rejections that is shaped by and shapes the interplay of genetic heritage, cultural tradition, previous experiences, and unfolding circumstances.
I don’t recall any place where he defined “empathies,” or, for that matter, “empathy,” much less “projections,” “correlations,” or “rejections.” These terms appear out of the ether, right after this chart:
where he proclaims an “Insight” that:
Interactions, as shown, represent a many-sided implicit cross-referencing process of projection, empathy, correlation, and rejection. (OD, 11)
If you really want to have some fun, try briefing these two charts sometime.
Then, in his very last briefing, The Essence of Winning and Losing (also in Articles), he drew his infamous OODA “loop” sketch (his words), below which he recorded another “Insight”:
Also note how the entire “loop” (not just orientation) is an ongoing many-sided implicit cross-referencing process of projection, empathy, correlation, and rejection.
The Zen of Boyd? I don’t know. Perhaps something to ponder. For example, if you squint hard at chart 10, are there other ways you could characterize these “interactions”? And how is the Stuka pilot Hans Rudel an interaction? Can you come up with some more relevant interactions to make a similar point about orientation?