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Articles > Eureka! The Emergence of the Simple Solution

Eureka! The Emergence of the Simple Solution

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What is Emergence? How does it apply to client facilitation? A 5-page primer to the innovative process of Emergent Knowledge and the Power of Six.

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The Emergence of the Simple Solution

Rumour has it that Archimedes’ discovery of a formula for calculating volume and density came to him while he was on a visit to the local baths. His sudden realization about a body’s displacement of water may have come about when he slipped on a bar of soap, but we can be sure that the actual mathematics involved were the result of a great deal of earlier brainwork.

In a Clean facilitative process, information accumulates, iterates, and in the right circumstances reorganizes suddenly, when simple solutions emerge. What is iteration? How can iterative questions be helpful in therapy, coaching, teaching, and training, where it might only take one or two small changes to produce life-changing effects?

This article is a primer to the Clean process of Emergent Knowledge and the Power of Six, in which people are facilitated to solve their own problems and transform their own symptoms in a simple but profoundly effective way. The word ‘eureka’ (“I have found it!”) comes from the same root as ‘heuristic’, a strategy for working your way towards the solution to a problem. Take the prescribed steps over and over again in an iterative process and you can expect emergence to occur!


Philip Harland is a Clean Language and Emergent Knowledge psychotherapist. The article is based on an extract from his book, The Power of Six, A Six Part Guide to Self Knowledge (Wayfinder Press 2009, 2012).

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