from hierarchy to conarchy


The word hierarchy comes from Greek hierarchía, from hierárches meaning chief ( from árchein, to command) of sacred (hierái) services, meant as mutual relation of supremacy and subordination.

The adjective hierarchical comes from the Greek church word hierarchikós, qualified to command, which refers to a hierarchy and its functions: hierarchical structure; hierarchical power; what is due according to the position one has in a hierarchy.


The words classification, grade, scale, in relation to a structure, command, order, commitment, shape, composition, frequency, range, degree, law, norm, regulation, ordering arrangement, order, vertical structure, selection, series, set, system, charter, tone, succession are synonymous of hierarchy.

Hierarchy has a lot of synonymous and no antonyms.

Normally, as a habit, one tends to identify the word hierarchical with the word organized, which has indeed many antonyms: Babel, bedlam, uproar, chaos, confusion, disorder, disorganization, indiscipline, laxity, and also madhouse, mess, bustle, row, shambles, din, huddle, crowd, congestion, throng, mass.

This why the opposite words to organization take also the opposite meaning of hierarchy. So, it looks like if hierarchy exists then also organization does and that if there isn’t any hierarchy there’s also no organization.

But is that really true? Hierarchy is the effect of selection and selection is the fundamental rule of evolution. The parts the strongest and most suitable assert them selves against the others. That’s how it is since the origin of universe. The annihilation of some parts allows other parts to evolve. It seems the only possible natural law.

Actually, selection is just the first law that allowed the evolution process: a fortuitous law asserted as effect of the increase of complexity.

To understand this concept we have to imagine the moment zero before the beginning of time. There is no space without time. Indeed, time is an effect of space. Because matter is made by energy, space and time, the only thing that could exist before space and time is pure energy devoid of space and time, made of independent and still elementary particles at their simplest stage, provided of primordial intelligence: a chaos of totally unexpressed potential energy.

Because everything takes place for necessity, and necessary is what we can’t go without, also pure energy devoid of space and time has required to go from the simplest stage to a complex one.

To do this, pure energy had to transform. In order to transform, its independent energy particles had to start relations with each other through motion, creating space and therefore also time and becoming interdependent.

With the beginning of space and time, pure energy started its evolving process, from the stage of maximum simplicity towards the one of maximum complexity.

Each stage of the evolution process corresponds to specific necessities.

In order to face necessities one makes some attempts. A necessity can be satisfied with the first or different attempts, until one of them doesn’t fulfill the necessity.

The attempt, perhaps not the first one, that satisfied the evolving necessity of the interdependent elementary particles provided of primordial intelligence was selection.

By continuing, the best way could have been different but the primordial intelligence of the elementary particles and the very strong acceleration of the first events didn’t allow other attempts.

So, the selection process (choice) became rule of the evolution process. Hierarchy is necessary in order to apply the selection rule. The sacrifice of some parts is functional to the evolution of the whole of the other parts. Until us.

Now after billion of years since the beginning of time and space, human being is provided of a much higher intelligence than the primordial one of the elementary particles and can therefore try to discover an evolution rule better than selection. The idea of conarchy rises from this consideration.

The word conarchy is derived by Greek ŕrchein (chief, commander) and koiné (common, union) and means to command in union, together. Conarchy is the opposite of hierarchy. A hierarchical structure can be represented as a step pyramid. In a hierarchical structure, the parts are placed on different dyadic (double valence) levels (steps). Who is on a certain level represents himself when he addresses those on the higher levels, while he represents the totality when addressing the parts on lower levels.

A conarchical structure can be represented as a sphere in which every part interacts with the others. All the parts of a sphere have the same valence despite having different functions: for example, the parts the closest to the center of the sphere keep a certain equilibrium compared to the external environment and those who are closer to the spherical surface maintain the speed and direction of the sphere.


In a system with a conarchical structure there are no levels. Each part moves and communicates freely with the others. There is no selection but there’s a union. The evolution of each part, of all parts is common. Every part has the same beginning environmental conditions and all parts can operate for their maximum self-fulfillment.

The hierarchical organization is founded on a relation of supremacy of some parts in regards to the others (supremacy and subordination). In the conarchical organization each part takes part to the management of the evolution processes and forms a whole totality aiming to the maximum possible evolution of all the parts.

How can the hierarchical structure be transformed in a conarchical one?

Also in this case, the solution has to comply with rational logic.

The hierarchical structure causes always  two typical fundamental and alternative effects: explosion and implosion.

We have an explosion when the subordinated parts rebel against their condition crushed by hierarchically higher parts, causing a rapid and violent expanding reaction that divides the system. But the explosion doesn’t change the systemic structure and time puts the system back as it was.

We have an implosion when the higher parts crush too much the hierarchically subordinated ones. In this case, a sudden brake takes place in the system which falls suffering the pressure of the higher parts with fragments shooting towards the inside. Not even the implosion changes the structure of the system and time carries out a fission causing the fixing or integration of the fragments with the parts placed on the typical hierarchical levels.

Therefore, with the typical effects of a hierarchical structure, this structure doesn’t change. A fusion process is needed in order to manage to transform it.

Fusion is the concentration of more parts or group of parts, its result is the formation of a new body run by laws different from the ones of the rest of the system.

A web can form as effect of the fusion process, a concatenation of parts and groups that put together can attract all the other parts of the system in the same conditions.

If the objective of the fusion is a conarchycal structure, in the end all the system will have a conarchical structure.

The fusion process needs a trigger and material conditions to make so that the parts can participate: first of all information and, then, knowledge of the structure of the system and knowledge of one’s own possibilities, then will, courage and, finally, concrete action.

The simplest way to take part in the fusion process is the one where three parts form a group represented by the letter Y: each of the three parts forms a new group of three parts, each part forms another group of three, until each part isn’t fused in a group of three.

The progression of the Y process in the formation of a structure is very quick: 1, 3, 7, 15, 31, 63, 127, 255, 511, 1.023, 2.047, 4.095, 8.191, 16.383, 32.767, 65.535, 131.071, 262.143, 524.287 and then 1.048.575. More than one million parts in 18 stages. Then 2.097.151, 4.194.303, 8.388.607, 16.777.215, 33.554.431, 67.108.863, 134.217.727. More than 100 million parts in another 7 stages. Finally, 268.435.455, 536.870.911, 1.073.741.823, 2.147.483.647, 4.294.967.295. This way in 30 stages, in which each part forms a group of three parts, 4 million parts can take part in the fusion.

The Y process is already running, although it’s kept as slow as possible, this to be completely sure the conarchical structure is valid. But, a part from any tactical reason, because the human beings living on Earth are almost 6.5 billions, of which 5 billions are at least 16 years old, this structure, before been displayed, will have to be formed by more than 3 billion participants, more than the 60 per cent the parts (people) at least 16 years old.

Until then we must build conarchy and live with hierarchy.

From then, conarchy will take the place of hierarchy.

Wednesday, 31 May 2006

Rodolfo Marusi Guareschi