Friday, April 11, 2008

Daily Dedroidify: Ken Wilber's Integral Theory

Daily Dedroidify: Ken Wilber's Integral Theory

Integral theory refers to the systematic holistic philosophy developed originally by Ken Wilber, and more recently incorporated with the Spiral Dynamics theory of Don Beck. It is an all-encompassing evolutionary theory that addresses all aspects of consciousness studies (as well as such diverse fields as ecology and politics.)

Integral theory builds upon the ideas of previous integral thinkers like James Mark Baldwin, Jürgen Habermas and Jean Gebser, but also contains many new elements. Wilber intends to break away from metaphysics to develop a theory of spiritual evolution that is acceptable to the modern secular world.

What's posted here is only a small excerpt from the Ken Wilber page.

"There's more to evolution than a little DNA." Stuart Davis

"The mystics ask you to take nothing on mere belief. Rather, they give you a set of experiments to test in your own awareness and experience. The laboratory is your own mind, the experiment is meditation." Ken Wilber

Fulcrums (comparable to 8 Circuit model)
1 hatching of the physical self
2 birth of the emotional self
3 birth of the conceptual self
4 birth of the role self
5 the worldcentric or mature ego
6 Bodymind integration of the centaur - Realms of the superconscious
7 Psychic - Shamanistic - Animistic
8 Subtle - Saintly - Diety & Archetypes
9 Causal - Sagely - Non-Dual
10 Integrated Reality of all levels, states, conditions, transcends all, includes all (not really seperate of 9)

"The integral approach is committed to the full spectrum of consciousness as it manifests in all its extraordinary diversity. This allows the integral approach to recognize and honor the Great Holarchy of Being first elucidated by the perennial philosophy and the great wisdom traditions in general... The integral vision embodies an attempt to take the best of both worlds, ancient and modern. But that demands a critical stance willing to reject unflinchingly the worst of both as well." Ken Wilber

Spiral Dynamics is a theory of human development introduced in the 1996 book Spiral Dynamics by Don Beck and Chris Cowan. The book was based on the theory of psychology professor Clare W. Graves and Ken Wilber has popularized these ideas in a series of books. It will help you understand how and why the hell people are acting like they do.

  • overview
  • overview
  • overview (dutch)
  • Spiral Dynamics wiki
  • Clare W.
  • wiki

  • "In other words, the real problem is not exterior. The real problem is interior. The real problem is how to get people to internally transform, from egocentric to sociocentric to worldcentric consciousness, which is the only stance that can grasp the global dimensions of the problem in the first place, and thus the only stance that can freely, even eagerly, embrace global solutions." Ken Wilber

    here's one overview, you need to read several links to do the theory justice though

    "Global consciousness is not an objective belief that can be taught to anybody and everybody, but a subjective transformation in the interior structures that can hold belief in the first place, which itself is the product of a long line of inner consciousness development." Ken Wilber

    "We move from part to whole and back again, and in that dance of comprehension, in that amazing circle of understanding, we come alive to meaning, to value, and to vision: the very circle of understanding guides our way, weaving together the pieces, healing the fractures, mending the torn and tortured fragments, lighting the way ahead - this extraordinary movement from part to whole and back again, with healing the hallmark of each and every step, and grace the tender reward." Ken Wilber

    Lines of Development
    Cognitive - Kinesthetic - Spiritual - Aesthetic - Musical - Karmic - Interpersonal - Moral - Worldview - Psychodynamics - Needs - Psychosexual - Values - Affective - Logical-Mathematical - Self-identity - ...

    The Lines of development are several areas of intelligence to increase so one evolves towards higher consciousness. Over two dozen have been observed. You don't have to excell in all of the lines, however research has shown some crosstraining accelerates development.
    So to say "I don't have time to develop several" isn't correct, actually you should say "I don't have time to NOT develop several." eg. people observed who just did vipassana meditation, did not accelerate as quickly as people who did vipassana combined with bodybuilding.

    One can be highly developed cognitively (cerebrally smart) without being highly morally developed (as in the case of Nazi doctors). However, Wilber acknowledges, you cannot be highly morally developed without the pre-requisite cognitive development. So not all of the developmental lines are ontologically equivalent.

    These lines are developped at levels pre-conventional (egocentric), conventional (ethnocentric), post-conventional (worldcentric), integrated (cosmocentric)

    Recommendations by Wilber
    Cognitive: Different points of view, philosophy, etc
    Spiritual: Meditation eg. Vipassana
    Psychodynamics: Unconscious shadow issues
    eg. Psychotherapy, Rebirthing technique, Sedona Method
    Kinesthetic: Body Training: eg. Yoga, Bodybuilding, Pilates, Tai Chi
    research has proven that a trained body sets back the Aging markers,
    not only that but too much running increases the Disease markers of the body
    so keep in shape but don't push it.

    Some clarification on some Lines
    Aestethic: self-expression, beauty, art, felt meaning
    Cognitive: awareness of what is
    Emotional/affective: full spectrum emotions
    Interpersonal: how i socially relate to others
    Moral: awareness of what should be
    Needs: Maslow's needs hierarchy
    Psychosexual: eros (gross to subtle to causal)
    Self-identity: who am i, loevinger's ego development
    Spiritual: spirit as unfolding, not just as ground or highest stage
    Values: what's most important, clare graves & spiral dynamics

    "The Realization of the Nondual traditions is uncompromising: There is only Spirit, there is only God, there is only Emptiness in all its radiant wonder. All the good and all the evil, the very best and the very worst, the upright and the degenerate— each and all are radically perfect manifestations of Spirit precisely as they are. There is nothing but God, nothing but the Goddess, nothing but Spirit in all directions, and not a grain of sand, not a speck of dust, is more or less Spirit than any other." Ken Wilber

    Read & learn much more at the Ken Wilber page.

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