By conflict dynamics we mean the process about how certain communication patterns develop and stabilise in social systems. They develop an autonomy which is described as conflict-laden. Thus, conflict systems ‘exist’, whose autonomous lives can be described independently of the conflict-laden issue, by the actors in their temporal development and stability. This is because of the asymmetry of key decisions which, once made, have consequences which are not so easily undone and possess a high resistance to change. In metatheory, these decisions can be named and can arise from the interaction with complexity. Distinctions between trust and mistrust, as well as taking action and being affected, play a particularly important role here. A metatheoretical understanding about the autopoietic structure of conflict systems helps counsellors, as well as the affected parties, not to naively view consensus or harmony as the ‘correct’ forms of communication, but to also have in view the functionality as well as the dysfunctionality of conflicts and consensus. This opens up counselling possibilities which are often necessary in conflict situations.
Further content about the system form conflict follows at the beginning of 2019