An independent forum for a critical discussion of the integral philosophy of Ken Wilber

Integral World Forum

Publication dates of essays (month/year) can be found under "Essays".

View All Eight “Human Odyssey” Buying Options

If you would like a free, full-color, digital copy of the entire
Quickstart Version of The Human Odyssey, just send your request
to Hugh Martin at [email protected]

HUGH MARTIN is listed in Who's Who in America and Who's Who in the World. He has appeared on numerous talk shows, led seminars at many colleges and corporations, and spoken at numerous professional conferences and colloquia. Mr. Martin is president of the FINRA-registered securities brokerage firm, Hugh Martin Securities, and of the SEC-registered investment advisory firm, Hugh Martin & Co. Hugh is also president and co-founder of the life planning and counseling firm, Whole Life Counseling. AMALIA KAYE MARTIN ('Kaye') is an early-education specialist, a gifted natural medicine practitioner, and an instructor in nutrition and natural medicine at Baumann College.
Readers are encouraged to write their own Amazon reviews of The Human Odyssey. For a free, digital, review copy of the entire Introductory Version of this book, write Hugh Martin at [email protected]. For details, see announcement at the beginning of Installment #1 (Hugh Martin)


Your Entire Life Journey in 58 Minutes or Less

A Book Review by Ulysses of Ithaca

The Human Odyssey, Our Journey of Life from Infancy to Eternity
To buy this book use the two
Amazon ads at the top of this page.

When I first came upon The Human Odyssey by Hugh & Kaye Martin, I didn't quite know what to make of it. The book had come highly recommended by a friend, and yet it didn't fit into any convenient niche. Is it penetrating academic study, like Robert Kagan's The Evolving Self or Thomas Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions? (The book features two of the foremost thinkers of our time, Ken Wilber and Joseph Campbell.) Is it a lavish art book or a picture book, like the Getty Foundation's Symbolism in Art? (About half the book is devoted to stunning works of art, engaging photos, and hilarious cartoons.) Is it a sensitive self-discovery book, like Julia Cameron's The Artist's Way? (Each section is accompanied by detailed exercises (called 'Personal Explorations') that enable the reader to apply a given concept in their own life.)

The answer is: All of the above. But the book also reminds me of another popular genre. It's like those companion volumes that come with any new PBS miniseries -- books like Kenneth Clark's Civilisation, Jacob Bronowski's The Ascent of Man, Carl Sagan's Cosmos, James Burke's The Day the Universe Changed, or Joseph Campbell's The Power of Myth. Like those books, The Human Odyssey covers a vast sweep of ideas and is full of thought-provoking insights, yet it's also replete with illustrations and asides that make it easy to get into.

As I began to dig into the book, I was confronted with a bold-face warning in the opening preface: “Do not even attempt to read this book cover-to-cover. There is just too much information to absorb.” What book begins by asking you not to read it? As it turns out, the authors suggest three alternative ways the book should be read: Read for Fun, Read for Insights, or Read for Understanding. I have a very busy life, and I don't need another burden, so I opted for the first alternative: Read for Fun.

I must say I'm blown away by this theory. It's a conception that satisfies both my head and my heart—a fascinating new way of viewing human behavior.

I took the authors at their word, and literally leafed through the book, pausing only for sections that easily caught my attention—mostly cartoons, illustrations, and their captions. According to the authors, these alone will convey what the book is about. To test this out, I've devised a little tour, and I'd like you to accompany me. Let's see if we can sift through the entire book in no more than 60 minutes, get the gist of the authors' message, and have 'fun' in the process. (In actuality, it took me just 58 minutes to do what follows.) The Guided Tour will begin in two pages. But first let me give you some background -- why I find this book so special, and why it's worth your precious time.

Let me say at the outset: This is a FANTASTIC BOOK! I GIVE IT 10 STARS ON A SCALE OF 5!!! I don't use superlatives often, but this book actually is 'fantastic' -- for two reasons: First, the book presents a terrific new model of human development. Second, it presents that model in a terrific new way. I'll cover each of these in turn. Then I'll lead you through the Tour.


The new model presented in this book is called ADAPT—short for All Dimensions, All Participants, All Processes, All Pathfinders, Together. In a nutshell, this model is a blueprint for life. It tells me where my life has been, where I'm going, and how to navigate some of the major hazards I'll encounter along the way.

As a prescription for living a life that is rich and rewarding, this model truly is 'fantastic.' It's been a major help in my counseling practice and my relationships with colleagues. For my wife, it's shown her new ways to teach her elementary school class and to enlist the enthusiastic support of parents and administrators. For both of us, it's been a big help in our marriage and a big influence on how we raise our kids.

How could a 'model,' something that sounds so abstract and theoretical, have such a big impact? Well, take the 'model' of the human body we call 'anatomy.' If I am a heart surgeon, my chances for a successful operation are best when I have the most accurate and detailed 'model' of the human heart to work from. It's the same with counseling, or teaching, or parenting. The better the model, the better the chances for success.

So, how did the Martins come up with this model? After all, they are not developmental psychologists from some prestigious university. Nor are they experienced clinical psychologists, with a lifetime of treating patients for personality disorders. (So far as I can tell, they're just two people with strong backgrounds in all aspects of personal growth -- people who have lived their lives to the full, and who have reflected deeply on the lives they've lived.)

Ken Wilber
Ken Wilber

So again, how did the authors come up with this extraordinary new theory? Evidently, by combining the work of two great modern thinkers, Ken Wilber and Joseph Campbell. On the Wilber side, they began with all the features of human growth from Wilber's famous Theory of Everything (AQAL+) from Integral Psychology: Levels, Lines, States, Quadrants, Self, Types, and so forth. On the Campbell side, they began with the 17 steps from Campbell's classic Hero's Journey: The Call to Adventure, Belly of the Whale, Road of Trials, Meeting with the Goddess, Atonement with the Father, Ultimate Boon, and so forth. Then (and this to me is the brilliant part) they introduced these two great men to each other (figuratively speaking, of course) and brought them into dialog!

Joseph Campbell
Joseph Campbell

Beginning on the Wilber side, they asked: If human life is all about development, what is the symbolic or mythic equivalent? (answer: Life is a 'Journey'). If in our development we go through Stages ('Levels'), what is the equivalent in our symbolic 'Journey?' (answer: the 'Islands' or 'Ports of Call' we visit along the way) If between any two Stages we go through a Transition, what is the symbolic equivalent? (answer: the treacherous and turbulent 'Open Seas' between two Islands) If in our highest moments, we experience Transcendent States of consciousness, what is the mythic equivalent? (the 'Realm of the Gods') And so forth.

Then, beginning on the Campbell side, they asked the comparable questions in reverse: If the Hero begins his 'Journey' in his 'Ordinary World,' what is the psychological or conceptual equivalent? (answer: the 'External Realm' of 'Everyday Life') If the Hero then moves into his 'Enchanted World,' what is the conceptual equivalent? (answer: the 'Internal Realms' of 'Psyche, Body, and Spirit') What is the 'Belly of the Whale?' (the psychological 'Impasse') What is the 'Road of Trials?' (the series of life 'Challenges') And so forth.

In the course of their dialog, Wilber and Campbell recognize that they agree on most important points. However, in many cases they have to come up with a common vocabulary that is explicable to both. Thus, they often need to rename terms, and sometimes redefine them.

Beyond this, the dialog between Wilber and Campbell reveals some pretty big gaps in both their theories. Thus, for a given Wilber concept (example: the 'Shadow Self' or 'Inner Saboteur'), a new feature of the Hero's Journey may be necessary (answer: the 'Misfit' or 'Troublemaker' aboard ship, literally the 'Saboteur'). Likewise, for a given Campbell concept from the Hero's Journey (example: 'Atonement with the Father'), a new psychological feature may be necessary (answer: the parent as 'Pathfinder,' or the reconciliation with 'Authority').

As this dialog continues, the two men ultimately come to a meeting of minds. The two separate models of Wilber and Campbell are replaced by a single unified model on which they can both agree—a combined model that is far more comprehensive and far more complete than either model would have been alone.

This unified model has two distinct parts. On Wilber's side, the model is called ADAPT. It describes in psychological and conceptual terms the soul's journey through the stages of life. On Campbell's side, the model is called the Life Journey Archetype. It describes in symbolic and mythic terms that very same journey.

I must say I'm blown away by this theory. It's a conception that satisfies both my head and my heart—a fascinating new way of viewing human behavior that at the same time is relevant to the practical concerns of my daily life.


As I say, the Martins have created this impressive new model. But they've also come up with a radical new way of presenting that model. A means of presentation that not only explains the model, but also brings the model to life.

Rather than the tedious, mind-numbing prose of many scholarly studies, rather than the cheery and vapid encouragement of many self-help books, rather than the simplistic generalizations of many popular bestsellers, the authors have devised a method of presentation that speaks to the reader simultaneously from several different perspectives and on several different levels of depth and significance.

The closest comparison I can think of is my travel guide to France from DK Publishing. In the section on Provence, for example, each pair of facing pages is laid out like a collage—with different sections on the towns, the countryside, the history, the food, the country inns, the art, the walks, etc.—all interlaced in a reader-friendly format, where I can browse easily from one topic to the other, just like I would do if I were wandering the streets and byways of Avignon or Saint Remy. Like my travel guide, a book like The Human Odyssey conveys the experience of actually 'being there.'

So how do the Martins do this, especially with a subject as complicated as human development? Well, to begin with, the book is printed in ravishing color on a huge 8x11 oversize format—so each two facing pages present the reader with a vast and engaging visual expanse, where lots of diverse information can be presented without clutter. Where feasible, each concept of human development is shown on its own two-page spread, and each such concept is presented in six different ways.

Let's take the concept of 'Stages of Everyday Life' (page 68), for example. In the middle-left, these Stages are described in psychological or conceptual terms (the 'Wilber approach'). In the upper-left, the same Stages are described in symbolic or mythic language (the 'Campbell approach'). Also on the mid-left, the Stages are shown in an old-time graphic of country life (the 'visual approach'). On the lower-left, a purple textbox connects the concept of Stages to other concepts in this book, while a tan textbox connects to the comparable concept in Wilber's writings (the 'structural approach'). On the upper-right of the two-page spread, a detailed table outlines all the Stages of life from infancy to old age (the 'analytical approach'). And (most important in my estimation), on the lower-right is a Personal Exploration, with questions that help me apply the concept in my own life (the 'experiential approach'). [The actual positioning on the page may vary, depending upon the edition you are reading.]

Just to sum up, every time you encounter a new concept in The Human Odyssey, you can immerse yourself in it from six different angles—conceptual, symbolic, visual, structural, analytical, and experiential. By the time you do that, you not only understand the concept, you live it.

Here's another remarkable benefit of this format. These six approaches give you six quick and comfortable ways to scan through the book as a whole. That is, if you're short of time, you can just leaf through the cartoons and illustrations (as we will do later in this review). Later, if you so choose, you can browse through just the conceptual sections, or just the symbolic and mythic sections, or even just the charts and tables. In each case it will probably take you no more than an hour, and in each case you can grasp the whole span of the book in just one sitting.

The only exceptions are the Personal Explorations. To do those justice, you'll want to devote at least half an hour to each -- and maybe come back for a second half hour at some later date. Like any form of deep introspection, these Explorations will repay an almost infinite amount of attention.

So there you have it: Six different ways to read the book. Six different approaches to human development. Six different threads you can follow to explore your own psyche. Now let's take just one of those six threads -- cartoons and illustrations -- and see how it plays out over the course of this book.

READING The Human Odyssey FOR FUN:
A Guided Tour through the Cartoons & Illustrations

The Human Odyssey presents a ton of new information, and does so from a radically new perspective, so it can be a bit difficult to get into. With that in mind, I've put together this Guided Tour to help get you started. This tour will lead you along the path that I took myself. I will browse through the book, pausing for each cartoon or illustration that strikes me as especially interesting. In each section, I will take a few representative examples, describe the cartoon or illustration that is presented (in italics), then add some comments and questions* of my own (in regular type). Then, for each section, I will list a few other pictures I think are especially worth your attention. (*My comments will be mainly in the form of questions because, like the authors, I want you come up with your own interpretations, not 'rely on the experts.')

My comments and questions will follow the general flow of the book: The book is about human development. The thesis is that human development (or personal growth) occurs through the interaction of four related features, called Domains: Dimensions, Participants, Processes, and Pathfinders. Each Domain contains seven or more sub-features, called Sectors. All the Domains and Sectors work together through eight different Systems to produce human growth. (Don't worry. All this will be explained below.)

The various Domains, Sectors, and Systems constitute the Main Division of the book. Before this Main Division, there are three preparatory sections: Preliminaries, an Introduction to Human Development, and an Overview of the entire model. After the Main Division, there are three concluding sections: a set of Resources for further study, the Conclusion per se, and a Gallery with more marvelous cartoons and graphics that illustrate key points from the book.

We'll start with the preparatory sections, then the Main Division, then the concluding sections. (I refer to the sections of the book by their letter-numbers (i.e. D-1). Page numbers are only approximate, because this book comes in various editions—each of which evidently has slightly different page numbers. All references refer to the Introductory Version of the book.)

So, hop aboard for the Guided Tour! Follow along in your book as we go…


What you need to know to make sense of this book: What the book contains, how it's put together, how you should read it.

PL, page 9. The Life Journey: Little Billy in the Forest. From their family campsite, Little Billy is sent off to gather kindling. Once in the forest, Billy quickly forgets his mission and launches into a series of adventures. (In his own mind, he enters the Enchanted World and begins a Hero's Journey.) As he is about to return, he remembers his mission, and gathers a few sticks for Mom. What adventures has Billy engaged in? What has he discovered? What fearsome challenges has his active imagination concocted? How big is Billy's Enchanted World? How limited and restricted is his Ordinary Reality? How can the 'Billies' of this world be encouraged to retain their independence and express their imagination—even as they mature into a world of practical reality?


The field of human development: Its immense breadth, depth, and meaning. The Growth Mentality: How we can avail ourselves of all the growth that we have the potential for.

IN, page 19. Human Development: The Great Tree of Life.

IN, page 20. Human Development: George Carlin. Comic George Carlin muses on how much better it would be if our lives progressed in reverse: First death ('get that over with'). Then the old-age home. Then retirement ('gold watch'). Then career. Then college and high school ('drugs, alcohol, party'). Then grade school ('no responsibilities'). Then babyhood. Then womb ('nine months floating'). Then conception ('finish it off with an orgasm'). So, according to Carlin, what do people normally think of as the stages of life? Is there more to life than just these stages? For most people, does life actually become less fun as the years pass by? How can we make our lives better as we grow older?

IN1b, page 25. Human Development: Uncle Andy, Still Has Tail.

IN1c, page 27. Human Development: Finding Life's Meaning. Auggie and Opus are out on a hilltop at night contemplating the stars. They begin a cosmological discussion: How did the universe come to be? Is there a God? Is life just a cosmic accident? If so, how can life have meaning? Auggie drifts off to sleep, just as it begins to sprinkle. To protect Auggie, Opus rests Auggie's head on Opus's own pillow, covers Auggie with Opus's own jacket, and holds an umbrella over Auggie, just as the downpour begins. Opus concludes that the meaning of life is not found, but made—through random acts of kindness like these. Does Auggie believe in God? Does Opus? Can life have meaning and purpose apart from the existence of some Divine Being? Do random acts of kindness from one human being to another imbue life with meaning? Have you found such meaning in your own life? How can you enrich your own life (and the lives of others) with more gestures of compassion and kindness?

IN1c, page 27. Woody Allen: On the Meaning(lessness) of Life.

IN2, page 31. The Growth Mentality: Dorothy's Black-&-White Kansas; Dorothy's Color-Filled Oz.

IN2, page 32. The Growth Mentality: Creative or Droid? At a fork in the road, one path leads toward a verdant landscape of Truth, Justice, Wisdom. The other path leads toward a bleak, dry terrain with a glitzy neon sign that proclaims '99¢ Burgers.' A huge crowd lines up on the path leading to the burgers. The other path is deserted. When life brings you moments of truth, do you choose a higher, more ennobling purpose? Or do you just follow the herd toward cheap, degrading, mass-produced pleasures? In what ways are you a Creative? In what ways are you a Droid?


A comparative overview: The ADAPT Model (from Ken Wilber) and the Life Journey Archetype (from Joseph Campbell). Thumbnail descriptions of each Domain and Sector from both perspectives.

OV, page 34. Overview: ADAPT & The Life Journey.

OV, page 35. Oprah: 60 Is the New 40.

OV, page 35. Joseph Campbell: The Labyrinth of the Human Soul.

OV1, pages 40-41. The Domains: ADAPT & the Life Journey Compared.

OV2, pages 44-63. The Sectors: ADAPT & the Life Journey Compared. [numbered items only]


The various areas of our life where growth takes place. The various features of that growth. Includes: Stages, Transitions, Developmental Sequence, Realms, Arenas, Impediments. This is the Map of our Life Journey.

D1, page 69. Stages: Whale Island.

D1a-d, pages 72, 74, 76, 78. Stages of Life Passages.

D1b, page 74. Stages of Middle Childhood: Linus and His Blanket. Charlie Brown asks Linus if the kids at school tease him about his security blanket. Linus demonstrates why they don't: When Charlie tosses up a piece of candy, Linus snaps it down with a thunderous 'whack!' of his blanket. When you first entered school, did kids make fun of you for acting like a baby? How did you have to change to become more accepted? How can we defend our childlike qualities from conformist social pressures? How can we stay Creatives in a world of Droids?

D2, page 81. Transitions: Ghost Ship Passing Through the Arch.

D2a-d, pages 84, 86, 88, 90. Transitions of Life Passages.

D2c, page 88. Transitions of Young Adulthood: Graduation Diploma. At graduation, college students line up in gowns to receive their diplomas. Back in the line, one student is reading the news headlines: 'Lousy job market.' The dean is actually handing out some piece of paper other than a diploma, explaining it as 'your best chance for a lucrative future.' A student who has just passed through the line looks at what he has just received, and realizes with surprise that he has been given a lottery ticket! What makes graduation from college such a big challenge? How do young people feel when they first realize they must now support themselves? What other tough challenges do young adults face, as they head out into the world? What were your biggest challenges when you first set out on your own? Were you adequately prepared for those challenges?

D1+2, page 93. Developmental Sequence: The Ascending Spiral.

DD1+2b, pages 98-99. Developmental Sequence: Static vs. Dynamic Cultures.

D3a, page 104. Life Passages: Busy Town.

D3b, page 106. Psyche Passages: Picking Frank's Brain.

D3d, page 110. Spirit Passages: Starry Night.

D4a, page 117. Arenas of Life Passages: Wheel of Life.

D7, pages 124 &126. Impediments: Steeple Chase vs. Maximum Security Prison.


The various aspects of Identity or Self that partake in the growth process. Includes: The Self System, Individual & Collective Selves, Personality Types, Shadow Self. These are the Voyagers of our Life Journey.

P, page 128. Participants: Steam Punk Mind.

P1, page 131. The Self System: Calvin's Observed Self. Calvin is captivated by the faces he is making in the mirror—everything from mockery, to boredom, to fear, to anger, to just plain goofy. In what ways is Calvin experimenting with the 'face' he presents to the world? How is he trying out different identities? Who is the real Calvin?: The funny faces that appear in the mirror? Or the zany little boy who is making the faces? What 'face' do you present to the world? What are you really like on the inside?

P2b, page 136. Montage of Collective Participants. This montage shows the many kinds of groups we can identify with: Couples, families, teams, work groups, etc. Which groups do you identify with most? For what groups would you be most willing to sacrifice your individual needs? For which group would you be willing to fast (give up eating) for a whole day? For which group would you be willing to dedicate a year of your life? What group (if any) would you be willing to die for?

P3b, page 142. Personality Types: Enneagram Dinner Table. Around the dinner table sit nine guests, each of a different Enneagram Type. They are all part of the same situation, yet each reacts quite differently, depending on their type. Type #1 passes judgment. Type #2 just wants to feel needed. And so forth. Are these nine people true to their type? What makes #1 a Reformer? What makes #2 a Helper? And so forth. What types are the people in your own life? Which type is your partner, your parents, your associates at work? Which type are you? If you're particular type, does that dictate how you must behave? Or is it still possible for you to improve, to grow, to act independently of your type?

P4, page 144-1477. Shadow Self: The Beast Within, Inner Saboteur, Gremlin. Any that strike your fancy.


All the methods and techniques we use to grow and develop. Either General Processes (available to everyone in any situation) or Specific Processes (available only to certain people at certain Stages). These are the Sailing Ships of our Life Journey.

PPR, page 148. Processes: The Sailing Whale.

PPR1, page 152. Transition Cycle: Little Eric's Growth. Little Eric, a happy baby, grows older and begins to toddle. He's a bit fearful, as he first stands erect on wobbly legs. But he's reassured by his dad's firm hand and the secure confidence that all will turn out well. How did Eric feel about himself as a baby? How does he feel about making the big transition to toddler? How did you feel when you first started to walk? (Or to speak your first real words? Or to first ride a bike? Or to add your first numbers?) What tough transition are you facing now in your life? Do you feel up to the challenge?

PPR5a, page 163. Collective Growth: The Office vs. The West Wing. The staff members of two TV shows are shown side-by-side: The Office and The West Wing. Both groups are in similar situations, but the dynamics are totally different. Which group changes over time? Which one remains basically static? Which group is composed mainly of odd and quirky caricatures? Which group contains mostly engaging and inspiring real people? In your own workplace (or even in your own family), do people treat each other like caricatures, or like real people? Are you yourself treated as a caricature? Do you feel more comfortable with depth and complexity of real people? Or are you more at ease with the simplicity and humor of caricatures?

PPR5b-2, page 166. Collective Growth: Generation Cycles in American History.

PR, page 170. Specific Processes. Any that strike your fancy.

PR22, page 170. Specific Processes: Planning Ahead. A herd of lemmings is plunging mindlessly into the sea. One lemming toward the back of the pack has a life preserver around his waist, so he won't drown with the rest. He glances at us with a knowing look, as if we are in on his stratagem. Who are the 'lemmings' of your life? What mishap or catastrophe do they not see coming? What could they do to prepare themselves? When are you yourself a lemming—a conformist follower? When do you depart from the crowd and put on your own 'life preserver?' How does it feel when you think for yourself and act in accordance with your own best judgment?

PR2, page 173. Specific Processes: Green Eggs & Ham.

PR1-35, page 187. Specific Processes in Pogo-Fenokee Swamp. Pogo's swamp is abuzz with activity. Albert the Alligator is taking a bath, while the owl is fishing in his tub. Pogo is writing a letter for the sourpuss porcupine. And so forth. What crazy life situations can you find in this very active diorama? How is each situation a joke, or a play on words, or an odd take on a familiar situation? What does each situation tell us about the animal creature that's in it? In which situations is the creature taking on a challenge and starting to grow? Where is your own Pogo-Fenokee Swamp? What life situations are you immersed in? Are they helping you (or forcing you) to grow?


The people and other resources that help us move along our path of growth. Includes: Parents, Authorities, Partner, Counselors, Mentors, Spiritual Guides. These are the Navigator & Captain of our Life Journey.

PF, page 188. Pathfinders: Navigating the Labyrinth. Shadowy figures are wandering around in a very complex labyrinth—some groping toward a dead end, others trapped within four brick walls. Through the maze runs a winding path, which eventually opens to a blue sky beyond. On the path, a few figures walk steadily and confidently toward that liberating destination. How did the shadowy figures become so trapped, so lost? How do the confident figures manage to remain on the true path? How labyrinthine is the maze of your own interior? Where do you tend to lose the path? Who can help you keep on track? Where do you hope to be, when you come out to the blue sky at the far end?

PF1-12, pages 194-225. Pathfinders. Any that strike your fancy.

PF5, page 205. Long-Term Partners: Class Reunion. In the movie Pride & Prejudice, Darcy and Lizzie contemplate each other from afar, wondering if a relationship is possible between two such different people. After a series of destabilizing occurrences, they both relinquish their character flaws, and are ready for a happy marriage. What forces Darcy to change his haughty pride? What causes Lizzie to overcome her negative prejudices? What changes are necessary before you yourself are ready for your culminating relationship? Do you have that relationship now? Is it everything you hoped it would be?

PF6a, page 207. Counselor: Halloween Group Therapy. A group of Halloween characters gather for group therapy and share their feelings. The Ghost is 'not the man I used to be.' The Witch 'curses everything.' The Jack-o-Lantern 'feels hollow inside.' And so forth. How is each Halloween character typical of a particular personality disorder? Why do kids choose to be particular characters at Halloween? If you were still young enough, which Halloween character would you choose? How does your choice of character reflect what you think of yourself?

PF8, page 214. Mentors: Dead Poet's Society.


The mechanisms by which all the Dimensions, Participants, Processes, and Pathfinders work together to produce Growth. These are the Shipping Systems of our Life Journey.

S, page 227. Systems: Calvin's Nefarious Waterbomb System. Calvin, with his co-conspirator Hobbes, concocts a scheme for bombing Susie with water balloons. His System consists of a treetop fort, a target toward which Susie will be enticed, and the water balloons themselves. Calvin is consumed with malicious glee. Hobbes muses that 'idle hands are the devil's workshop.' What is Calvin's System intended to accomplish? What does a System of Growth accomplish? How are the two Systems comparable? What are the real-world Systems in your own life? Does your real-world System ever expand its function to become a System of Growth? Is there a way that Calvin's water-bomb System actually helps him grow?

S4, page 239. Rachel's Restoration Growth. As a baby, Little Rachel was neglected and abused. Later, as an unhappy toddler, Rachel attempted to disown the Unhappy Baby within her—resulting in a pernicious Shadow Self that haunted her later in life. Now she must revisit those painful early experiences, then resolve them in order to resume a happy, normal life. How could Rachel's parents (or relations) have helped her avoid those early traumatic experiences? Once those experiences occurred, who could have helped Rachel make sense of them, to limit their devastating effect? What early traumas were part of your own life? How do they affect your present attitudes and behaviors? How can you embark on your own Restoration Growth?


Books and other resources you can use to continue on the path of your own Personal Evolution.

Appx C4, pages 266-269. Growth Centers. Descriptions of the several types of Growth Center you might consider visiting: Meditation Centers, Alternative Universities, Human Potential Growth Centers, etc. Which particular Growth Center would you like to visit? What type of program or workshop might you like to attend? How do you hope it might change you?


Follow the Thread: Ways to get the essence of this book by following just one component. The ADAPT Gallery: Cartoons and illustrations that shed further light on key concepts from the book.

CL, page 271. Conclusion: The Medieval Labyrinth.

CL16, page 274. Forget Everything You've Learned: Your Golden Compass. When you've absorbed and internalized all the Processes and Pathfinders you've experienced throughout life, you develop your own Internal Navigator—the Golden Compass that tells you which path to take, and how far you can go. Who are some of the Pathfinders who have had a big effect on your life? Your parents? Some favorite teacher? Your beloved partner? Your therapist? Do you still need their guidance, or can you now take care of yourself? How does it feel to become truly independent and self-sufficient? Where will you go, now that you are free to chart your own course?

ADAPT Gallery, page 276-288. Any of the cartoons & illustrations that appeal to you.

PF3, page 284. Holistic Growth Situation: Coloring Easter Eggs. Daddy gathers the kids around the dining room table to color Easter eggs. The kids are full of amusing questions and astute observations: 'Who colors jellybeans?' 'Let's mail an egg to Grandma.' 'Jeffrey mixed raw eggs with these cooked eggs.' When kids color Easter eggs, what are some of the things they're learning? About food? About color? About organization? About working together? What family experiences like these did you have in your own early life? How are those experiences echoed in your present-day life? How can you turn the ordinary, humdrum activities of your daily life into exciting learning experiences?

The Life Journey, page 288. The Human Odyssey vs. A Dog's Odyssey. Snoopy, the World War I flying ace, is shot down over France and must find his way home to Tipperary, Ireland. To get there, he must trudge through town and countryside, ford rushing streams, climb precipitous mountains, cross barren deserts, and navigate darkened paths at night—until he finally reaches his destination, spent and exhausted. In Snoopy's estimation, his Dog's Odyssey was every bit as challenging as The Human Odyssey of this book! Has your Human Odyssey been an ordeal, or an adventure? Are you richer, and wiser, for having gone through it? Are you eager to continue your discoveries of life's untapped potential? What step will you take next?

Publication History “The Human Odyssey”

Publication History “Ken Wilber, Joseph Campbell & The Meaning of Life"”

Comment Form is loading comments...