From the Inside Out: Learning to presence my aesthetic and spiritual being through the emergent form of a creative art of inquiry

Abstract of PhD Submission
J. Scholes-Rhodes

This is a unique account of first-person research, a transformative inquiry into the presencing of 'being' through the emergence and development of a creative art of inquiry.

I contextualise the creative energy and dialogic rigour of this practice as a fluid synthesis of the discipline of Marshall's (1999, 2001) inquiry practice and the attentional qualities of the dialogic principles of Bohm (1985, 1992, 1996), Isaacs (1999) and Grudin (1996). I place it alongside an understanding of the 'emergent learning' of Senge & Scharmer (2001), Jaworski & Scharmer (2000a) and Jaworski (1996) and offer it as a unique form of first-person inquiry, able to construct knowledge from:

Intuitive structuring
The unfolding of an embodied truth
Intentional and attentional patterning
The living expression of language
Respectful and generative listening

I remain permanently at the edge of my own knowing, confident in the ability of my authoritative voice to define the fluid boundaries of my inquiry.

I hold my changing sense of the world clearly at the centre of my learning, my sense of spiritual and aesthetic belonging expressed as a sense of 'exquisite connectivity'. I develop a notion of 'live' and 'life' meanings as I begin to explore my understanding of its emergent possibilities, holding a fragile sense of a connected world side by side with the generative capacity of my dialogic voice.

I create an intricate patterning of personal stories and dialogic inquiry process, forming a sense of coherence from the juxtaposition of emotional images with the clarity of a reflective and cognitive dialogue.

I develop a style of written text that reaches beyond the boundaries of presentational knowing, creating a new understanding of a living expression of an emergent sensibility to a connective world.

And I allow generative questioning to take my inquiries into new and unanticipated places, holding open the boundaries of a woven truth to qualities of relational sense-making and learning to listen attentively to the richness and creative possibilities of the responses.

I share my personal story in the spirit of enabling and mutual dialogue. I offer my thesis as an original contribution to an appreciation of inquiry as a creative art.


You can download the PhD in chapters which are stored in Word Format

Cover, Abstract, Index and Preface: Respecting the integrity of my purpose and motivation

Mapping the Journey

How can I make sense of this feeling of disconnection? Tracking the formation of my inquiry practice through the emergence of my aesthetic and spiritual connectivity.

How can I develop this art of dialogic inquiry as a form of learning and connective relationship?

How can I offer an evaluative framework for my thesis that honours, tests and explains its generative and improvisatory form?

How can I position my own distinctive form of dialogic inquiry practice as an original contribution to an appreciation of inquiry as a creative art?