Here's a new piece of writing by Ken (though some of it looks like it is copied from an older text). 

Integral Semiotics

I have skimmed it, but I'm too swamped at the moment to give it careful attention.  I look forward to coming back to this in a few days.

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Also, I think when we consider integral semiotics we would want to consider the insights of various cultures and paradigms, including those from the wisdom traditions. For example, Hindus, Buddhists, and others have made it clear that when they talk about nonduality, emptiness, or Brahman they are not referring to a subject enacting an object, but the dissolution of the subject/object split. This is not a phenomenon that Western linguists had experience with, generally speaking.

I mean, what specific feature(s) of Wilber's Integral semiotics do you think are informed by this sort of state realization?

(I can imagine several possibilities for how the relationship between state realization and accomplishment in semiotic/linguistic theory might manifest...)

David said:

Bruce: "One place to start might be to ask if, and how, Integral semiotics is uniquely shaped or influenced by Wilber's state realization."

That's what I just did, Bruce.

I think the entire thing is informed by his state realization directly or indirectly. It's the state realization (meaning mostly the structural realization of deeper states, not state-stages) that allows such an inclusive meta-view.

But it's particularly the treatment of states that I think is affected. Postmodern philosophy dealt with gross and subtle phenomena, not causal and nondual.

I am wondering if you are in pretty basic disagreement with Wilber's postmetaphysical project.  He is appealing to the insights of post/modernity, derived from philosophy, linguistics, science, philosophy of science, etc, to put "checks" on, and to update and reframe, the claims of the ancient mystics.  He apparently is not suggesting that these fields have nothing profound, worthwhile, or even revolutionary to contribute to spiritual (not just gross, mundane) understanding.

As to whether 'postmodernists' are or not proficient in meditative states is not at issue but whether those states are interpreted postmetaphysically. And that can be done without so-called state realization since interpretation is their bag. Nonetheless, without accepting me as an expert in state realization one might look to Thompson, who co-authored The Embodied Mind with Varela and Rosch. See this thread, part of which is his work on meditative states and neuroscience with Tibetan monks. Thompson himself is adept at meditative states and the monks he studies are long-term masters. And he challenges traditional interpretations of said state-stages.

Yes, of course, Bruce. He is certainly appealing to the insights of all those disciplines to put checks on the ancient mystics and reframe things. But he isn't questioning that there could be a spiritual absolute as you do.

But I think it's probably best we drop this discussion. I don't think it's going anywhere. You all have your way of enacting "integral postmetaphysical spirituality," and I agree more with Wilber's interpretation, which isn't antagonistic to, say, the Madhyamaka view that Varela embraced.

So I will just leave you to it.

Okay, that's fine; we've been down this road before.  But I must add, before you go, that I am not antagonistic to the Madhyamaka view.  That's not a fair representation of my position at all.

Okay, I'll buy that. Then we're in good-enough agreement here as well.  :) But Wilber tends to rely on the Madhyamaka view himself (aside from teaching meditation, which is a different subject), so there shouldn't be much conflict with his interpretation either.

There are many different schools within Madhyamaka. Generally it is divided into shentong and rangtong. Wilber is much more on the shentong side and I prefer the rangtong.* See the Batchelor thread and its references for that exploration. Therein I explore what I think of as the more metaphysicial view of the shentongs and how that applies to the 'absolute' side of Wilber's work.

* Actually I'm a pOOOntongpa, my own version.

From Integral Options on the Lingam's semiotics paper:

"What I am claiming is that the metaphysics upon which much of the spiritual element in integral theory is little more than intelligent design dressed in New Age clothing. And in that respect, Wilber's 'integral semiotics' is simply another defense of that paradigm."

In that post he references D.G. Anderson's response to the paper. From that response:

"I find such categories as the possible, the emergent, and the novel to be of particular use; these are not yet accounted for here, insofar as the 'Kosmic Address' described above concerns posited phenomena, the already realized, and not those presently articulating processes that are only now becoming."

Intelligent Design posits a personal God who rules over the universe. Integral Theory posits a non-personal evolutionary gradient. There is a big difference.

Not really. The morphogenetic gradient as involutionary given is of the same type of metaphysics and not necessary at all in postmetaphysics.

And 'integral theory,' like Madhyamaka, is not all of the same kind. When you reference kennilingus please be specific, as it alone does not encompass all of integral theory. I think the last couple of ITCs make it clear that the field is far more expansive than kennilingus. And that the latter is no longer the leading edge of the field.

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What paths lie ahead for religion and spirituality in the 21st Century? How might the insights of modernity and post-modernity impact and inform humanity's ancient wisdom traditions? How are we to enact, together, new spiritual visions – independently, or within our respective traditions – that can respond adequately to the challenges of our times?

This group is for anyone interested in exploring these questions and tracing out the horizons of an integral post-metaphysical spirituality.

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