Card Sessions: Reframing Things

Card Session: One Million Villages

John Kellden
5 min readDec 1, 2020

How are we living into the future?

Flows = Structures x Processes

Dynamically evolving trees in our minds and, over time and with practice, forming evolving grooves in our brains. Some which no longer serve…

Reframing Things: Epistemization

Things are effed up and sh*it, and you ought to feel bad about not doing your part to change that. <- notice the narrative hook

You Deserve Better
With a multi-dimensional, multi-modal epistemization, we can access a great many more options, than just remaining inside one particular narrative.

Default Narrative: Shared Misery

1. Things are effed up and shit.

2. Here’s a magic bullet.

1. Fake News

2. Nourish our epistemic wellbeing

Three Things Unhealthy With Almost All Mass Media

  1. It’s a simplistic frame (which is almost never good, people are not simpletons, even though some of them can behave as if they are)
  2. It keeps us from exploring narrative, choose different frames and narratives, pursue different options than merely confine ourselves to the prefab notion: go henceforth and sin no more, nourish your epistemic wellbeing.
    And, here’s the guilt trip as the third thing wrong with almost all these simplistic frames:
  3. If you don’t nourish your epistemic wellbeing, you will be responsible for the generation and spreading of fake news, aka you are a bad human being.

Be Like Stop
Since most human beings really don’t want to be bad, they will, once the narrative hook has attached itself to our unsuspecting minds, do whatever they are capable of, following the advice, in order to avoid feeling bad about themselves.

Design Narrative: Because You Deserve Better

From where I sit, human beings deserve much better than to be served simplistic frames.

Card: Interwoven

“The misconception which has haunted philosophic literature throughout the centuries is the notion of ‘independent existence.’ There is no such mode of existence; every entity is to be understood in terms of the way it is interwoven with the rest of the universe.”
― Alfred North Whitehead

Notice the vibrant conversation among human beings becoming human.

A different frame and CTA

Your brain needs your mind to nourish its wellbeing. Be nice to your brain, feed it varied, wholesome meals, cultivating brain vitality.

Why? Welcome to …

Circles of knowing, cycles of understanding, spirals of human becoming and hopf fibrations of human evolution.


No worries, that’s just me using lots of big fancy words, meaning, explore how it feels, exploring the unfoldment of your own, much richer story, and the experience how it intertwines and flows together with everyone else you meet.


— How would we know? How would we know we’re doing it?

— Flow. Flow is how you know.

Flows: Reframing Gatherings
In a network, the best place to store knowledge is in people, in circles of concern, influence, confluence, consilience and considered, considerate conversations that mind and matter.

Structures: Reframing Things
There’s a growing, evolving set of posts themed Reframing Things.

Processes: Reframing Thinks
Complex responsive processes, with enactive intersubjectivity readiness potential, 0.3 seconds before we think it is.

Card Sessions: Reveal, Reframe & Rethink

Cards considered in light of questions,
a gamified way to help you reframe things.

There’s many ways to frame our experiences and reframe things.

Cards considered in light of questions,
a gamified way to help you reframe things.

As small groups engage in Card Sessions and/or Knowledge Navigation Labs, their connecting ability with need and situational awareness with preferable outcomes, can be helped by a systems intelligence approach, a seven-fold structure and process:

1. Review

“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”
— Antoine de Saint-Exupery

2. Reflect

“So, the idea of thought-proprioception is not so strange as it may sound at first. Thoughts and feelings are movements and therefore we suppose that it must be possible to have proprioception of them. Since the body has the ability to sense its own movements, which is proprioception in a physical sense, we should also be able to extend this ability in the psychological realm. It is only a natural extension of body-proprioception. In fact, it’s very strange that we haven’t developed it very much, not enough anyway.”
— David Bohm

3. Reveal
What cards are we holding, what cards are we putting on the table, what unique talent, forming what competence, instigating and stewarding what flow, what movement?

4. Reframe
Systems intelligence, applied to the Card Session Question and the participatory inquiries forming part of the Knowledge Navigation Labs.


At the very core of all our efforts at framing and reframing, is how we are seeing things and how we are learning to see.

Alva Noë:
“I start off from this appreciation that tools and technologies are central to our lives.
And one of the things I’m interested in is the way they become habitual and organize us, and it’s hard us really to conceive of ourselves apart from all of these tools that we use.
Tools including language itself, or pictorial technologies, and of course writing and email — and hammers and nails and doors and door handles and floors.
Tools, I think, can only have this meaning they have for us in our daily lives, in our lived experience, thanks to the way they’re embedded in a whole background of needs and expectations and ways that we live.
For us, doorknobs are these really self-evident kinds of things. But if you imagine an anthropologist from a remote planet, who didn’t know that we have bodies like the bodies we have, it might require a certain amount of thought and inventiveness and intelligence to think of the doorknob, to imagine how the doorknob is used.”

5. Rethink
Philosophy and even more so, process philosophy (Alfred North Whitehead) can be seen and understood as taking thought conducive to both knowledge annealing: virtue, and knowledge flow: path. This means, that the generative review of both Card Sessions and Knowledge Navigation Labs, seen as places conducive to reveal-reframe-rethink, is ambiance and flow in service to convivial efficacy.

6. Learn to see
This is all about a Card Session participant returning from the Knowledge Navigation Lab to her ordinary line of work, often meeting resistance when she’s trying to share her newfound perception, insights and perspectives. This is beyond the scope of Card Sessions and is all about Cultural Understanding.

7. Scale: Human Centric Innovation
Human centric innovation, and at information ecology and knowledge ecosystem scale: societal innovation, is all about (re)orientation and organizing, in service to different paths to preferable outcomes.

The strategic outcome of Card Sessions and Knowledge Navigation Labs, is innovation.

The preferable outcomes: equitable, pluralistic societies.



John Kellden

Cards catalyzing stories, Conversations that mind and matter, Digital communities and collaborative narratives