Creative Discussion using Plain Pair Groups

Creative Discussion – a key to insight and change

William Plain
Emeritus Professor, Nagoya University of Foreign Studies

Plain Pair Group Teaching (Plain PGT)
- for universities and schools
Plain Pair Group Discussion (Plain PGD)
- for decision making and staff development
- for informal or community creative discussion

A flash of insight is the spark of cosmic intelligence.
Small group sharing of insight can change the pattern of human intelligence. &

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Am "I" responsible for the many problems that underlie relationships with each other and with the earth we belong to; for the massive species extinction of the last few decades, the most catastrophic event since the disappearance of the dinosaurs; and for global warming which could well result in the greatest of all extinction events in the history of life as temperature increase may possibly equal or surpass that of the Permian extinction (6ºC) which resulted in 90% extinction of life?

When the organisations I am part of, from the local to the planetary, act in ways that are all too often destructive to the environment, to other peoples, and even to their own members, what can "I" do?

Why is the individual - "I" - a participant in all this in so many ways?

It seems the problem lies in the "thinking brain", in the conditioning that forms the ways that I think, in seeing myself as separate from the world around me.

Is there something that "I" can do, realising that I am always in some way a part of the problem? Can "I" discover something totally new, and totally appropriate?

If the whole of the brain is conditioned, then the "new" can only come from outside the brain – yet somehow "mine", in no way received from "other".

Every individual experiences moments of inner silence, of "awakeness", along with a "flash of insight" which brings a new way of seeing, of understanding. While "insight" is often ignored, particularly in education or employment, and even in daily life, it is the key to breaking the conditioning that ties us all to the past and the accumulation of error.

While insight can be accessed only by the individual - the organisation can only access this through the insights of multiple individuals - I still need to share my insights and interact with those of others.

This website shows how insight can be facilitated by "Creative Discussion", a form of interaction within a small "Insight Group", and how insights arising among members of this group can be shared with other groups and throughout an organisation or community by each group member also belonging to a separate group - the "Plain Pair Group".

Through this website I offer the results of a long period of research, looking at how to develop creativity and examining the role of "flash of insight" in freeing the conditioned brain.

In particular, this website details how to develop creativity through interaction within and between small discussion groups, using a process of presentation of ideas aimed at stimulating insight, and attentive listening with a silent mind while "listening/watching/sensing" for one's own "flash of insight".

"Creative Discussion using Plain Pair Groups" can be applied in a wide range of contexts, from education to corporate awareness raising, from informal discussion groups to high level decision-making.

Organise your own Creative Discussion group among family or friends, at work or in your community. Encourage each person to make a separate group. Refer back to this website often.

The group you are in "now" is the "Insight Group". The "other" group you take "good ideas" to, or bring them back from, is the "Plain Pair Group".

If you benefit from ideas presented on these pages, please recognise this by:
making a link to specific pages of interest
telling others about this website
respecting copyright
giving recognition of any advantage to you or your organisation by making a contribution.

Through giving importance to insight and taking note of and sharing my insights, "I" can find that new ideas and understandings come to play a greater part in my life, while synchronicity becomes a "normal" part of my interaction with others.

When participating in a Creative Discussion group, listening attentively and non-judgementally to the ideas of others opens up new vistas, and by sharing my own insights, my ideas can "ripple out" across the discussion community as each person carries the best ideas to another "pair group", and so on.

Whether this takes place within an organisation or community, or among family and friends, the sharing of insight through Creative Discussion can open up new dimensions of understanding and responsibility, bringing about an evolutionary change at all levels and providing an environment within which human conditioning can be replaced by a capacity for "mental proprioception", recognising error in thought, emotions and paradigms, leading towards becoming fully evolved human beings.


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See also


submissions to government reviews and events

October 2015 submission Climate change strategy for South Australia

May 2014 Renewable Energy Target Review submission on global warming and Arctic methane

February 2014 Senate enquiry submission on climate policy No. 69 (choose Page size 100)

Sunday 17th November 2013, Burra Climate Creative Discussion


or choose a section of the contents based on your area of interest.

Students: go to > Plain Pair Group Discussion

Teachers: go to > Plain Pair Group Teaching

For university reform: go to > Creative Campus

For ideas: go to > Developing Creativity

Informal discussion groups: > Plain Pair Group Discussion

Communities, people concerned with decisions taken in their name: > Plain Pair Group Discussion

Companies and organisations: > Corporate Creative Discussion

Leadership and decision-making: > Collective Deliberation


specific ways to become involved

Send your own "Email to change the world": > Campaign email

Take an active part in global campaigns: > Avaaz Creative Discussion

Join in campaigns affecting Australia:> GetUp Creative Discussion


Recognition and remuneration


© William Plain  1990-2024 (print); 2005 - 2024 (website)