Since we brought up this topic in the “conservative integralites” thread let’s dive a bit deeper here. First here’s the last few posts from that thread:


Theurj said:


”This is a key issue: What is transcended and included and what is transcended and replaced? I discussed this in the "capitalism" thread. According to Wilber, and with which I agree, worldviews are replaced, not included. (See footnote 7 here for example). So to me an integral worldview would not include bit and pieces of different views in some kind of synthesis-integration-inclusion but replace them altogether into creative novelty. Hence my dissatisfaction with the promotion of integral or conscious capitalism. And things like the latter tend toward a more conservative worldview, just dressed up in new clothing-jingo.”


Mary W said:


“It's possible that I don't fully understand what is meant by ‘worldview.’ But it seems to me that one could find some value in elements of a worldview that one no longer holds. I see the integral perspective as including not just random bits and pieces of amber/orange/green in a kind of synthetic hodgepodge -- but recognizing what is of value in them and allowing that to fuel a transformative process.

“For example: in healthy development one is said to move from ‘egocentric’ to "ethnocentric" to ‘worldcentric’ to ‘cosmocentric’ -- the spheres of love/concern become more widely embracing. The limitations of each of these levels are transcended as one develops, but the element of love/concern is retained. While worldcentric could be said to be a replacement (and a rejection, even) of ethnocentric, it retains the bit of gold that existed at the previous level.”


Theurj said:


“Wilber differentiates basic and transitional structures, the former being included while the latter are transcended. So it is a question of what is defined as each kind of strucutre. Here's an excert from “Ladder, climber, view” by Ingersoll and Cook-Greuter:

‘As the self develops (climbs the ladder and increases its altitude), each rung reveals a broader, deeper view or perspective that replaces previous views or perspectives…. In one sense, these views are permanent for the period that the self is on a given rung. In another sense, the views are transitional in that once the self moves from a given rung to the next rung on the ladder, the previous view is replaced by a new, expanded view.’


“Wilber references his own article ‘ladder, climber, view’ on p. 66 of Integral Spirituality but says he won't discuss it in the book. He says one can find it at his site ( but when I searched for it I could not find it. Does anyone have its specific web address?

Views: 1305

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

it is interesting as far as what gets totally replaced and what gets included in a theoretical 'higher' worldview. it would seem to me and i'd certainly be happier if the new and 'higher' worldview of postmetaphysics which abandons traditional metaphysics was accompanied by a complete abandonment of the capitalist system as is being implemented by the globalists...who are obviously integral, right? selective interpretation seems to happen as much in 'higher' stages as it does with the mythic stage......

if the netherland states are green with free 'higher' education for their citizens........well then.........
Wilber’s online essay “To see a world” might be one source for how he defines worldviews (WV). For example:

“We do not live in a pregiven world. One of the more remarkable tenets of the postmodern revolution in philosophy, psychology, and sociology is that different worldviews exist -- different ways of categorizing, presenting, representing, and organizing our experiences. There is not a single, monolithic world with a single, privileged representation, but rather multiple worlds with pluralistic interpretations.”

Here we have the pomo WV of WVs, that they are not given, i.e., a postmetaphysical WV. It took this WV to recognize the existence of WVs in the first place, and how they shape our actual experience of the world.

But then Wilber notes this:

“So, even though certain epochs were especially marked by a particular worldview -- foraging, by magic; agrarian, by mythic; and industrial, by mentalrational, for example -- nonetheless, all of these major modes of interpreting our experience seem to be potentials of the human organism, and any of them can be brought forth in any individual under the right circumstances.”

This is a notion from a prior, metaphysical WV, one that assumes we have inherent, fully-formed potentials like this always already lying dormant, like an archetype that just needs the “right circumstances” to manifest. It’s a version of involutionary givens. Granted this article might pre-date W’s later writings on involutionary givens as merely amorphous potentials that are then shaped by circumstances or “life conditions” as SD calls them. Nonetheless, the more postmetaphysical, pragmatic and pomo worldview and (not “integral”) SD might argue that life conditions are more likely the evolutionary co-creators of stages of consciousness and worldview formation, not metaphysical involutionary givens, even as amorphous potentials.

In a more recent Wilber blog (5/26/08) “Integral third say politics” it says this about 2nd tier values:

“Teal (worldcentric to “kosmocentric,” integral): The Teal Altitude marks the beginning of an integral worldview, where pluralism and relativism are transcended and included into a more systematic whole. The transition from green to teal is also known as the transition from “1st-tier” values to “2nd-tier” values, the most immediate difference being the fact that each “1st-tier” value thinks it is the only truly correct value, while “2nd-tier” values recognize the importance of all preceding stages of development. Thus, the teal worldview honors the insights of the green worldview, but places it into a larger context that allows for healthy hierarchies, and healthy value distinctions.

“Perhaps most important, a teal worldview begins to see the process of development itself, acknowledging that each one of the previous stages (magenta through green) has an important role to play in the human experience. Teal consciousness sees that each of the previous stages reveals an important truth, and pulls them all together and integrates them without trying to change them to “be more like me,” and without resorting to extreme cultural relativism (“all are equal”). Teal worldviews do more than just see all points of view (that’s a green worldview)—it can see and honor them, but also critically evaluate them.

“Turquoise (“kosmocentric,” integral): Turquoise is a mature integral view, one that sees not only healthy hierarchy but also the various quadrants of human knowledge, expression, and inquiry (at the minimum: I, we, and it). While teal worldviews tend to be secular, turquoise is the first to begin to integrate Spirit as a living force in the world (manifested through any or all of the 3 Faces of God: “I”—the “No self” or “witness” of Buddhism; “we/thou”—the “great other” of Christianity, Judaism, Hindusm, Islam, etc.; or “it”—the “Web of Life” seen in Taoism, Pantheism, etc.).”

First of all, we have a teal WV transcending and including prior WVs. But I thought WVs were transcended and replaced? Note though the usual argument that 1st tier is the one that replaces all other WVs because it assumes it is the only correct one. At 2nd tier we magically now include all previous WVs in the teal WV? Or do we recognize like our first quote that multiple WVs exist and should be contextualized and critically evaluated, while also recognizing that the 2nd tier WV is itself a WV that replaces those in 1st tier?

As for turquoise, it reinjects “Spirit” back into the equation. And therein lies the question for an IPS, how to have a nondual spirituality that doesn’t separate spirituality from the mundane, that doesn’t “include” the metaphysical interpretations from prior WVs. It might even be an expression of a metaphysical WV holdover to call something “spirituality,” since the very term indicates the metaphysical notion of an absolute world apart from a relative WV. Granted we can re-define it any way we like but nevertheless its etymology is one of a split, dualistic origin. Another term that can be more easily separated from its metaphysical baggage is “nondual.” Integral Postmetaphysical nonduality? I’ve already made a strong case that the intersection of American Pragmatism with second generation cognitive science is precisely this WV based on postformal cognitive functioning. And AQAL to boot, though they don’t use those terms.
Gidley talks about the difference between research that identifies postformal operations (PFO) from examples of those that enact PFO. And that much of the research identifying PFO has itself “been framed and presented from a formal, mental-rational mode” (109). Plus those enacting PFO don’t “necessarilty conceptualize it as such” (104), meaning the way those that identify it do, i.e., from a formal operational (FO) mode. Which is of course one of my key inquiries: Is the way PFO is identified through FO really just a FO worldview interpretation of what PFO might be? Especially since those enacting PFO disagree with the very premises of the FO worldview and its “formally” dressed PFO?
I found this by Corey deVos on “ladder, climber, view” at Integral Life:

“Transitional structures, on the other hand, are aspects of development which, once we develop beyond them, disappear forever and remain inaccessible to the self-system. A great example is the development of worldviews: magic -> mythic -> rational -> pluralistic -> integral. Once you have grown out of Mythic and into the Rational worldview, the mythic view is forever lost (except in the case of shadows and subpersonalities, which complexifies things a little bit.) Another great example is Kohlberg's scheme of moral development--once you grow from Moral Stage 2 to Moral Stage 3, you will never ever go back to the first two stages. Once their gone, they are lost forever (barring severe brain damage, anyway.)”

He then quotes Wilber from Ken Wilber in Dialogue:

“The important difference between the enduring structures and the transitional structures can easily be seen in a comparison of, say, Piaget and Kohlberg. With cognitive development in general, each stage is incorporated into subsequent stages, so that the junior is a crucial component of the senior. Once images emerge, for example, the individual has full and constant access to the capacity to form images. And images themselves will be an indispensable ingredient in the higher symbolic, conceptual, and formal thought. But with moral development, the process is quite different: higher structures do not so much incorporate as replace previous ones. Thus, a person at moral stage 4 does not have open access to moral stage 1, for those stages are mutually incompatible (a conformist does not simultaneously act as an egocentric rebel). In fact, a moral stage 4 person cannot even think in the terms of moral stage 1; those earlier structures have long ago dissolved and been replaced (barring fixation, repression, etc.)”
Now I'm going to question myself a bit. It seems much of the above presumes that a particular worldview is a stable, coherent, consistent monolith, at least until it changes into another one. But of course there is no worldview in itself but it is rather in context with ladder and climber. And the self-climber is itelf also not a stable monolith. Aside from the shadows and sub-personalities mentioned above, which seem rather the norm than the exception, I also noted in the "real and false reason" thread that Fischer, while assured of hierarchical complexity, notes that a "level" will go both up, down and sideways in different lines depending on different contexts. There might be a semi-stable center of gravity that itself fluctuates within a narrower range, but most of us are all over the place most of the time. And our worldviews are as well, also dependent on a variety of factors and life conditions.
Also in the "reason" thread one of the links to Lakoff discusses neural mutual inhibition, where " two opposing moral systems can live in brain circuits that inhibit each other and are active in different contexts."
The following excerpt is from Lakoff in The Political Mind (Penguin, 2008 ):


Terms like conservative, liberal and progressive cannot do justice to complex reality of our politics and our experience as humans. There are indeed two worldviews in use, general progressivism and general conservatism…but they do not exist is separate spheres. Though many self-identified conservatives use the general conservative worldview in areas that matter for them, they may use the general progressive worldview in other areas. The same is true for self-identified liberals and progressives.

The brain mechanism of biconceptualism is mutual inhibition, where both worldviews exist in the same brain but are linked to nonoverlapping areas of life. The activation of one worldview mutually inhibits the other…. Each is a coherent system of concepts in itself and they coexist happily if they can be kept apart.

But wait a minute! Isn’t the guy…a hypocrite?… A hypocrite is defined as relative to what we call a value-consistency frame, in which values are supposed to be consistent and all-encompassing, the same ones used in all cases…. Pure progressives and pure conservatives often consider biconceptual political leaders hypocrites when they apply different worldviews to different issues. But biconceptualism is simply a fact about brains…. The true biconceptual doesn’t see himself as a hypocrite at all, since the switch is automatic and unconscious (69-71).
A quick comment on where Lakoff meets Fischer and Wilber. Lakoff agrees with Wilber in that worldviews are indeed mutually exclusive, since they "mutually inhibit" the other and cannot exist in the same context at the same time. But L diverges from W in that one can shift between them in different contexts, where agreement is found with Fischer. However with Fischer, like many developmentalists, there is an assumption that one is fully (or nearly so) conscious of their cognitive processes, whereas L finds it is mostly unconscious. And finally you can see that with L there are "pure" types who stick to a consistent, all-encompassing frame in all cases. Yet he doesn't seem to understand like W or F that this might arise from a specific level, one that assumes a formal operational view. On the other hand, L does see this but frames it as false reason.
definitely lot's of data to draw from and not exactly easy to flesh out definitive conclusions...

on education again: if scandinavia and the netherlands implemented universal education for their citizens as a 1st tier green value then where does that leave ii and for profit universities that claim teal or higher values? would those countries have to move into a for profit system to get to 2nd tier status? or is ii holding on to a 1st tier orange value? and if that's the case how can it claim to be the leading edge of the universe when concomitantly that worldview pits brother against bother, sister against sister, and brother against sister, figuratively and literally in a competition for survival and supremacy? not to mention that for profit education exists because of the skewed value system that would rather spend global commons money on military conquest and for profit prison systems and billions on security for g20 summits for people like bill clinton and tony blair who are trumpeted as integral political pioneers who seem to need a hell of a lot of protection....
That is part of the problem, that we can just give a monolithic label (or kosmic address) to anyone or any phenomenon, that it is purely green or turquoise, 1st or 2nd tier, formal or postformal. That notion is itself part of an formal-rational WV that presupposes "a consistent, all-encompassing frame in all cases." Or perhaps the deficient rational from a Gebser perspective, or false reason from Lakoff's. Hence we get Wilber being rather "formal" in certain lines and contexts, like capitalism economically and educationally, and dogmtic when it come to WVs being all or none consistently in all cases (with exceptions for shadows and sub-personalities).

A more postformal, postmetaphysical WV of WVs is more like Fischer and Lakoff in that we are up and down and sideways depending on contexts and issues. But this WV is not merely or strictly relativistic, not the MGM as Wilber attests without universals or qualitiative distinctions. For Lakoff there are indeed universals but grounded in embodiment, not transcendental metaphysics. Such embodied universals are both postmetaphysical and nondual. And even this WV is a best case sceniaro, an exemplar or goal to be envisioned, but one even its proponents fall far short of in many situations, lines and conditions.
This is also part of the problem with a strictly mathematical model of hierarchical complexity based on set theory. Phenomenon, including human cognitive structures, do not fit nicely into one “set” or category so that they can be completely included and subsumed into the next higher set or category. At best each phenomenon interacts with another more like a venn diagram, overlapping with some area in common, but other areas that are not included and subsumed in a higher synthesis. Which is why I wonder whether the formal study of postformal enactments in methods like the MHC is itself a formal or PF enactment. Or some venn combination between, sharing partial sets from both?
Hi, theurj, if you haven't seen this blog yet, you might find it interesting and relevant to your discussion here.

Reply to Discussion


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.

Notice to Visitors

At the moment, this site is at full membership capacity and we are not admitting new members.  We are still getting new membership applications, however, so I am considering upgrading to the next level, which will allow for more members to join.  In the meantime, all discussions are open for viewing and we hope you will read and enjoy the content here.

© 2019   Created by Balder.   Powered by

Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service