The establishing manifesto of Eleogenetics


Massimo Schinco (Cervasca, Italy)[1]


The term “Eleogenetics” derives from the union of two ancient Greek words: “eleos”, that means “mercy”, and “genesis”, that means “origin” and “development”. Thus, “Eleogenetics” consists in the study of the processes creating and facilitating the emergence, or specifically, the “epiphany” of Mercy[2]. The word “epiphany” also derives from the ancient Greek and means “manifestation”. It has similarly been described in the modern language of Systems Theory with the term “emergence”, but when we focus on human communities and societies, and even on the behavior of individuals, “epiphany” may be more fitting in order to describe an “emergence” with emphasis on the aesthetical, transcendent and ethical aspects required.

The relationship between the epiphanies of Mercy and the processes giving rise to them, i.e. eleogenetic processes, is recursive and features “charmed loops”. A flurry of small acts of Mercy in the everyday life of individuals, it is the core of the so called “eleogenetic practices”. Every act of Mercy is in itself an emergence/epiphany, and features itself as being genuinely creative, coming into being out of exquisitely individual responsibility. Nevertheless, none of these acts carries with it a tendency to isolation or fragmentation. On the contrary, since every act of Mercy emerges from what the late Montague Ullman calls the “incorruptible core of being”, they reflect two basic features; though individual and distinct, belong to a wider, shared reality. Furthermore, they are directed toward a common destination.

Eleogenetics, i.e. the study of eleogenetic processes and practices, presents a particular focus. It is not a new belief, since its very nature implies that people should learn to become closer to each other by respecting their belonging to different systems of belief. Furthermore, Eleogenetics fully recognizes and respects the value of organized and individual systems of belief, and their differences. It does not attempt to change them in any way. Thus, Eleogenetics has a number of tenets.

The first is about the definition of Mercy. Although Mercy, when experienced, is very simple in itself, as a concept is not liable to a simple, univocal definition. We will consider Mercy as a mystery, in the sense that the French philosopher Gabriel Marcel would intend it: something we are plunged in, so that we cannot depict it from outside in objective terms. So as not to forget this quality, in this document the word “Mercy” is capitalized. In order to speak of Mercy, our models feature a complexity that should be acknowledged and respected, eschewing any possible oversimplification. For instance, in this frame of complexity, from the eleogenetic point of view it is relevant that Mercy is a cross-concept that brings closer different religions, like Christianity, Islam and Judaism. Similarly, the experience of Mercy nearly overlaps the “compassion” of Buddhists and Hinduists. Thus, in a domain of sad (and even bloody) controversies like those involving religions, Mercy focuses on what unites. It is intrinsic to Eleogenetics to claim that reality is first a reality of persons, with their feelings, expressions, activities, encounters and contacts. This makes evident the widespread misunderstanding for which Mercy is often mistaken as a sickly-sweetish attitude of turning a blind eye, while instead it is a way to approach reality with more precision and beauty. Justice being a basic need and a characteristic intrinsic to humankind, it is thus mandatory to take into the utmost consideration the close relationship between Mercy and Justice, although it may be difficult in certain circumstances. Eleogenetic practices allow us to develop this kind of sensitivity and knowledge of oneself, of others, and ultimately of the world. This statement has implications regarding the relationship existing between Mercy and the world of emotions and feelings.

Contrasting the dominant views oriented toward seeking and implementing “objective solutions” to “objective problems” detected by “objective and not emotional thinking”, Mercy can be considered a disposition, both toward others and oneself. This may establish a balance between a peaceful loving concern and alertness. An eleogenetic–oriented approach to reality takes into the utmost consideration a sincere connection with emotions and feelings, both positive and negative, as well as the full acknowledgement of other conditions and human needs that ground our life experience in actual circumstances and relationships, providing them with meaning and possible directions for action.

To understand Mercy from a cybernetic point of view, it is convenient to focus on eleogenetic practices because the emergence of Mercy, though featured by discontinuity, is a point of arrival and simultaneously a new start. We should not try to figure Mercy as disconnected from concrete processes occurring in time and space. It is true that, now and then, traumatic and painful events may help distant people to reconcile or get closer in a way they had not before, Eleogenetics preferably focuses on the long-time processes of ordinary life that can pave the way to the epiphanies of Mercy. Thus, it recommends an open but kind approach in getting closer to people experienced as different from oneself, so not to force or frighten one’s partner, or to take advantage of everything that unites.

Kindness plays a special role in eleogenetic practices. Kindness features itself both as a general attitude and as something very concrete. In a negative form, it can be defined as the intention of not causing harm or discomfort to oneself and others; in a positive form, it can be seen as the attempt to conform mutual relationships to a criteria of beauty, simplicity and fairness. Particular attention is paid to kindness in the use of language. An eleogenetic use of language should openly express that Beauty, Right and Truth are strictly intertwined.

No doubt that the effects of Mercy can be macroscopic from a personal and social point of view. Nonetheless, it is peculiar of Mercy and Eleogenetic practices to take place in events and interactions whose order of magnitude is small or infinitely small; for example the interaction between mother and child, or the activities of our mind, brain and soul. In other words, although eleogenetic practices start in a definite situation, they take place simultaneously in different dimensions of reality, including those where our ordinary coordinates of space and time lose their meaning. The interaction among these different planes of reality can be of utmost relevance for the Eleogenetic Processes.  From a higher theoretical point of view, it is likely that a modeling of these processes in terms of “fields” would be appropriate.

An eleogenetic field may possibly be represented as an attractor. On the one hand, it behaves as an antagonist of the demanding tolls paid to the excess of entropy which women and men generate out of their injustice, greediness, inner dryness and presumed omnipotence, often misunderstood as realism, regardless of natural environment. On the other hand, as an attractor, an eleogenetic field is future–-oriented and triggers the epiphany of Righteousness, Beauty and Truth always in original and unpredictable forms. This derives also from its continuous interaction with the past and with entropic processes, that far from being denied, become like old bricks used to realize totally new buildings.

Who is this manifesto addressed to?

The manifesto is addressed to scholars, researchers, teachers and professionals who are attracted by Mercy and Eleogenetic Practices, as well as by the idea that Mercy and Eleogenetic Practices are worth taking into account in what one does, investigates, thinks, writes, teaches, imagines and dreams.

No one is required to completely agree with all the statements listed above. Opinions and beliefs may be different, theories and hypothesis change, experiences and feelings don’t necessarily overlap and philosophical and theological implications may take different pathways.

In the overall meaning of the term, the manifesto aims to gather people around the exploration of a specific subject of study: Eleogenetics. We do not know to what extent it will give rise to the production of documents, exchange of papers and experiences, debates, or events. Eleogenetic processes are unpredictable. Let Mercy attract this activity and see how it develops. 

Cervasca, March 21, 2015.


[1] Psychotherapist, Supervisor, Teacher. E-mail:

[2] In the manifesto the word “Mercy” is always written with the initial in capital for reasons that will be soon explained

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