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Integral World: Exploring Theories of Everything
An independent forum for a critical discussion of the integral philosophy of Ken Wilber
SEE MORE ESSAYS WRITTEN BY LEXI NEALE
Author Lex Neale is an independent Integral Theorist and member of the Integral Research Center. After taking a B.Sc in Zoology at London University he became involved in consciousness studies, and developing his thesis that the origin of life is consciousness. In India he became a practitioner of Prem Rawat's "Knowledge of the Self", and has an ongoing affiliation with the Prem Rawat Foundation, www.tprf.org He lives in the redwoods of northern California.
THE NECESSITY OF A
TRI-AXIAL INTEGRAL MODEL
To Include All-Persons as an APAQAL Paradigm
I have come to realize the reason I have had difficulty in promoting the AQAL Cube to the Integral community.
My previous contributions to Integral Theory have always emphasized the need for a Third (vertical) Axis, in order to expand the existing Integral (AQAL) Standard Model for mapping the non-physical dimensionalities of awareness and existence. Working in the quantum sciences outside of the Integral family, the Third Axis injunction is proving to be a scientific necessity for modeling the latest developments in quantum and consciousness research, with what I call Integral Relativity (see “Integral Relativity, an update, September 2016” posted here on Integral World for a primer to this article).
Integral Theory's allotting the first three Persons on the standard Four Quadrant map has resulted in a conflation so severe that it has crippled the progress of IT. Integral Theory has failed to acknowledge the injunctions that differentiate each Person as an octo-dynamic set of perspectives. This is because when the Eight Fundamental Perspectives were introduced in Wilber's “Integral Spirituality” (2006), no injunction was given for the third polarity “InsideOutside” that generates the 2 x 2 x 2 = 8 Fundamental Perspectives. We demonstrate here not only how each Person is an AQAL octo-dynamic set of perspectives, but also how each Person invokes its own unique Third Axis Injunction for those perspectives. On the one hand each Person sequentially comes “on line” as a new world view in one's cognitive development; but on the other hand each Person evolves in its own right as an octodynamic AQAL development.
The Eight Fundamental Perspectives
The Eight Fundamental Perspectives shown in Figure 1. are in the Third Person context; whereby all physical phenomena are delegated by octants 2, 4, 6, 8, which is Wilber's Integral standard model, and all non-physical phenomena are delegated by octants 1, 3, 5, 7, as an extension to that model. On the two horizontal axes we have the polarities IndividualCollective, and InteriorExterior. The Third Axis injunction for this Third Im-personal cosmological model is therefore that cosmological manifestation takes place between the poles of physical existence and non-physical existence, as evidenced in the New Sciences (see Integral Relativity). David Bohm called this same polarity of manifestation the “Explicate Order” and “Implicate Order”
Figure 1. The Eight Fundamental Perspectives
We are now in a position to correctly contextualize the octo-dynamics for each of the other Persons, with their respective Third Axis injunctions.
So, how do we map this octo-dynamic progression of Person-perspectives? Using the same format as Figure 1 comes the Personal Pronouns template, shown in Figure 2, from which all the Persons-perspectives are generated in any language. It is no coincidence that the personal pronouns in any language progress through the Persons in sets of eight, give or take the conflation of one or two pronoun perspectives in each language. With the first two horizontal axes we have SingularPlural, and SubjectiveObjective. The Third Axis injunction for all the Personal Pronouns is that we categorize our perception of phenomena as Possessive or Tangible, and as Non-possessive or Intangible.
Figure 2. The Personal Pronouns Template
The First Person Injunction
“Tangible” and “Intangible”, and Wilber's “Outside” and “Inside” awareness, describe the Third Axis polarity, but do not explain the injunction in terms of how those polarities actually invoke those experiences. It is here that Integral Relativity differentiates the poles of the First Person Third Axis as two modes of awareness: the Local tangible pole is that of the experiential Mind, and the Non-local intangible pole is that of the experiencer Consciousness, resulting in the eight perspectives of First Person awareness, and categorized by the First Person pronouns shown in Figure 3.
So the First Person Third Axis injunction is that there is an Observer Consciousness behind the experiential Mind, which is the “Inside” experiencer of the “Outside” experience. I propose here that the First Person octants provide the injunctions that categorize the “Lines” of personal development in Integral Theory.
Figure 3. The First Person AQAL Cube Psychograph
The Proximate and Distal Selves are Octant 1 and Octant 5 differentiations on the First Person AQAL Cube. Octant 5 is the Distal Self “Me”, or the way I formulate my Proximate Self as a Persona in its true etymological sense, as my mask, as how “I” want others to identify with “Me”. This All Level “Me” is Wilber's “inside” observed self. (Note: This description of the Distal Self as Persona is not the persona of fulcrum 4 in Integral Theory.) And the corresponding behavior of this Persona as “My” Personality is Wilber's “outside”, where Octant 6 pertains to “My” personality through “My” behavior. The Enneagram personality types, as elucidated by Don Riso makes the Persona/Personality differentiation very clearly. Equally, our Social Persona or our identification with “Us” “inside”, and our Social Personality behavior in “Our” tribe “outside”, follow the same First Person differentiations.
Detailed below are the Eight First Person Perspectives through four representative Levels designated by colors of the Wilber-Newtonian spectrum. Each Perspective includes the corresponding Line(s) in Integral Theory.
- Octant 1: Proximate Self as the “I” Consciousness. Self-identity witnessing through Levels of assumed identity states. Lines: Proximate Self-identity, spiritual identity. Representative Levels of Self- identity-as-witness are: RedId identity (Consciousness fused with the Lower Mind); OrangeEgo identity (Consciousness fused with the Lower Mind); BlueSoul identity (Consciousness differentiated from Higher Mind). VioletSupreme Witness (Causal Conscious- ness and Causal Mind as Non-dual).
- Octant 2: Cognitive Self as the “I” Mind. Experiential and access awareness, through Fulcrum Levels of intelligence structures. Lines: All Intelligences, such as cognitive, affective, psychosexual, aesthetic, spiritual. Representative Levels of experiential intelligence are: RedLower Mind sensing, feeling, emoting; OrangeLower Mind thinking; BlueHigher Mind visioning; VioletCausal Mind wisdom / Akashic experience / Supermind.
- Octant 3: Inter-Proximate Self as the “We” Consciousness. Shared self-identity through Levels of assumed identity states. Line: Inter-proximate self. Representative Levels are: RedInter-Id as fused “I-We”; OrangeInter-Ego; BlueInter-Soul; VioletNon-Dual “We”.
- Octant 4: Cultural Self as the “We” Mind. Interpretive, shared or common experience as cultural intelligence. Lines: moral self, world-view self. Representative Levels are: RedTribal member (fused “I- We”); Orangecultural independent; Bluecultural visionary; Violetspiritual iconoclast.
- Octant 5: Distal Self or Persona as the “Me” Consciousness. Objectively differentiated from the Proximate Self of Octant 1, the Persona is self-referential as a Self-image. This is not the persona of Fulcrum 4, but the intentional persona of the Enneagram, the objective evaluator of the Self-system and home of the Self- judging Super-Ego. Line: Self-image, persona. Representative Levels as State-stages are: RedId-centered; OrangeEgo-centered; BlueSoul- centered; VioletPneumo-centered.
- Octant 6: Behavioral Persona or Personality as the “My” Mind. Objectively differentiated from the Cognitive Self of Octant 2, the Behavioral Persona is the objective expression of Mind as our Personality and its Enneatypes. Lines: behavioral personalities as applied to cognitive, affective, psychosexual, aesthetic, spiritual. Representative Levels as Structure-stages are: Redmagic; Orangerational; Blueintegral; Violetspiritually wise.
- Octant 7: Inter-Distal or Social Persona as the “Us” Consciousness. The Social Self-image is a fused “Me- Us” until socio-centric, after which the Social Identity differentiates. Identification with family, organizations and affiliations. After-death identification with others is through the correlated Non-Local All-Level Social Persona. Line: interpersonal. Representative Levels as State-stages are: Redsymbiont; Orangeserver-dominator; Blueintegrator; Violetcompassionate.
- Octant 8: Social Personality as the “Our” Mind. The Social Personality evolving as organized and cooperative behavior and experience of social situations. Lines: sociocultural, relational, ethical. Representative Levels as Structure-stages: Redtribal member; Orangenationalist; Blueglobalist; Violetutopian.
There is indeed a growing sense of “We-ness” as global crisis looms, and as the connectivity provided by the internet brings isolated individuals closer together. In times past, “We the people” lost patience with the powers that were and overthrew them in bloody revolutions. In this time, with weapons technology, that would be a disaster. In the spirit of Gandhi's non-violence, the “Occupy” movement protesting the greed of Wall Street and its Plutocracy grew overnight into a global phenomenon, as a means of protesting an entire spectrum of disenfranchisement. Despite its powerful altruism, that “We” movement eventually collapsed in a similar fashion to that of the Muslim students protesting fundamentalism, or the “Peace and Love” movement of the Sixties protesting war.
We now look at the possibility that all inter-subjective and inter- objective “We” and “Us” movements have a flawed premise as First Person collectives trying to accomplish Second and Third Person agendas. Even the standard model of Integral Theory uses the “We” identity in a Second Person context. What does this imply?
“We” is actually my own First Person Plural self-take on my having a shareable world view. “Shareable” is the operative word, where my inner inter-subjective awareness “We” is poised to make a Second Person inter-subjective exchange with someone else. Until that happens, there are two individuals in proximity, and even in communion, but in First Person awareness. It is only when we communicate with each other, or with the “enemy”, that the whole ballgame shifts to an “I-You”, Second Person reality, and we know the power of our sharing. The “I-You” space is where the ball gets hit out of the park. For “me” to really understand “you”, I not only need to know my First Person space, but also your Second Person space, and vice versa.
Integral Theory has not differentiated a First or Second Person AQAL map, and the proposed First and Second Person AQAL Cubes fully differentiate all the nuanced perspectives required for inter-personal understanding. The significant implications involve the power to meaningfully communicate as ambassadors, diplomats, leaders, governments, and entire nations of individuals without a voice.
Between the Eight First Person Perspectives alone there are 8 x 8 = 64 binary perspectives we can take of our self-situation. And when “I” bring these to “your” table and consider the 64 ways “I” can now see “you”, and “you” can see “me” back, there are a myriad nuances to be shared. When two poets come together in the name of the muse, the Earth quakes. We need to recognize our personal power to communicate our vision and our greatness, which is that of our own Self. To know “My” Self is to know “You”.
If Integral Theory is to practice a leading role in global transformation, it is vital to expand the Integral model to octo-dynamic First and Second Persons. In this way the self 's “We” space can expand as a truly shared “I-You-Them” space in full consciousness, where we can enjoy each other's beauty, truth and goodness.
The Second Person Injunction
Second Person research is in serious need of this expanded model, especially for dysfunctional relationships, families, communities and nations. When dealing with a shared binary perspective between two individuals, the Subject has a First Person Cube psychograph, whose Second Person Object has a perceived Second Person Cube psychograph, and vice versa for the other Subject. The differences between the four resulting psychographs reveal the perceptual obstacles.
Figure 4. shows the Second Person octodynamics of how we see and relate to another person. Because the Second Person is also a First Person perspective, the Second Person Third Axis injunction is the same as the First Person Third axis injunction, from the perspective of an experiencer-observer having a First Person experience of Second Person intimacy with sentient beings, and their associated activity.
Figure 4. The Second Person Cube
- Octant 1: Proximate Self in individual relationship as “You/ Thou” Consciousness. Individually identifying with and relating to another implies intimacy. In times gone by “Thou” implied true identity, trust and respect reserved for an honored relationship. Representative State-stages are: RedId-Fascination (you fascinate me); OrangeEgo-Attention (you have my attention); BlueSoul-Attention (you are my soul-mate); VioletDivine Attention (You and I are One).
- Octant 2: Cognitive Self in individual relationship as “Your/Thy” Mind. Individual experiential relationship with another.
- Octant 3: Inter-Proximate relationship as “You (plural)/Ye” Consciousness. Identification between Selves as a basis for Second Person intimacy.
- Octant 4: Cultural Relationship as “Your (plural)” Minds. Relating through sharing experience in the communication of feelings, thoughts, morals and world views.
- Octant 5: Distal Persona in individual relationship as “You/Thee” Consciousness. Here is how one sees and evaluates another as an objective identity.
- Octant 6: Behavioral Persona in individual relationship as “Your/ Thy” Mind. Relating to the behavior and objectives of another person.
- Octant 7: Inter-Objective Relationship as “You (plural)” Consciousness. Socially identifying with others.
- Octant 8: Social Relationship as “Your (plural)” Mind. Shared experience in families, groups, organizations, political parties.
The Third Person Injunction
The Third Person is the strongest in Integral Theory as the Third Impersonal AQAL Square model, and subsequent Eight Fundamental Perspectives as Third Person Zones. However, the eight Third Person Pronouns themselves hardly feature in Integral Theory, as personal perspectives of Third Person awareness, shown in Figures 5 and 6. As with all 8 x 3 = 24 Personal Pronouns, they are rooted in the First Person perspectives of Me observing You and Them.
Figure 5. The Third Person Cube
So the Third Person Third Axis injunction is also made from the First Person Third axis injunction, from the perspective of an experiencer-observer having a First Person experience of Third Person sentient beings, and their associated activity, as shown in Figures 5 and 6.
Figure 6. The Third Person Cube with Methodologies
- Octant 1: Phenomenological identity, as “He/She” Conscious- ness. Identity State-stages as Id, Ego, Soul and Supreme Witness; which correlate with Sub-conscious, Conscious, Super- conscious and Enlightened States; or Gross, Subtle, Causal and Non-Dual experience.
- Octant 2: Experiential structures as “His/Her” Mind. The representative Intelligence Structure-stages are: Red - Body-mind, Orange - Lower Mind, Blue - Higher Mind and Violet - Big Mind; which correlate to the fulcrum developmental structures of magic, rational, integral and super-integral/Akashic.
- Octant 3: Hermeneutic experience as “They” Consciousness. The Levels of Cultural Identity are according to the capacity to identify, communicate and interpret collective interiors as world views. Representative State-stages are: Redmagical; Orangescientific- rational; Blueintegral; Violetpost-integral.
- Octant 4: Ethnomethodological experience as “Their” Mind. The cultural community where world views take form. Representative Structure-stages are: Redmagical; Orangescientific- rational; Blueintegral; Violetpost-integral.
- Octant 5: Autopoietic experience as “Him/Her” Consciousness. The embedded observer visualizing and imaging through “Inside” processes. As a Non-Local Impersonal entity, the Consciousness monad exists in an Energy body correlating with its Phenomenological level of identity (Octant 1). Representative State-stages are: RedPre-personal; OrangeEgo Persona; BlueIntegrated Persona; VioletSupra-Personal.
- Octant 6: Local processing as “His/Her” Body-Mind. The em-bodied observer evolving through Levels of increasing physical complexity, through information processing using increasingly fundamental states of energy. Representative Structure-stages are: RedLimbic/electrochemical; OrangeNeocortex/electromagnetic; BluePineal/quantum; VioletSupra-pineal/ supraquantum.
- Octant 7: Social Autopoietic experience as “Them” Conscious- ness. The inside agenda of the organizers. As Non-Local Impersonal Realms, they are environments for the Consciousness monad and its Energy Body, as projections in the after-death experience. Representative State- stages are: Redsymbiotic; Orangeserver-dominance; Blueintegral; Violetcompassion.
- Octant 8: Social Systems experience as “Their” Mind in the arena of organized activity in social environments. Representative Structure-stages: RedBiosphere; OrangeNoosphere; BlueWorld- sphere; VioletTheosphere.
Self-evident from this analysis is that the Third Im-personal perspectives are purely objective, as an It / Its octodynamic, as distinct from the Third Person subjective perspectives of sentient existence. Also self-evident is that Integral Theory has not made an Im-personal Third Axis injunction to explain the differentiation of the eight Zones in the classic Four Quadrant model shown in Figure 1, which is: the observer differentiating Implicate Order from Explicate Order, or Nonlocal and Local existence.
At the end of this article I discuss the Fourth Person as a special case in point.
The Fifth Person Axis Injunction
It is here that we understand the dynamics of Awareness as the Attention, the Intention, and the Extension in the process of our ontological awareness becoming grounded in epistemological knowing. This complex issue is dealt with in “Integral Relativityan update, September 2016”, where it is explained how our Consciousness is the seat of our Intention, and our Mind is the seat of our capacity to manifest that Intention, as Extension, as the Fifth Person injunction.
The Sixth Person Third Axis Injunction
Similarly, the above article explains the Sixth Person AQAL Cube, shown in Figure 7. Here is where we see that the underpinnings of the entire Kosmos are arranged through the same octodynamic fractal paradigm of Kosmic manifestation. At this fundamental stage of manifestation, the Third Axis injunction is the polarity differentiation between a full-spectrum Subtle Domain and a co-existing, co-evolving full-spectrum Concrete Domain. Figure 7 shows how this Third Axis polarity organizes the elements required to initiate the process of Kosmic manifestation, and also how Wilber's First Tier AQAL Square (Concrete manifestation) is expanded to the Second Tier AQAL Cube (Subtle co-manifestation).
Figure 7. The Sixth Person AQAL Cube
A flow chart of this same process is shown in Figure 8. This chart also demonstrates the involutionary sequence of unfolding of the Persons.
Figure 8. A Proposed Flow Chart of Kosmic Unfolding
I have come to realize that the reason I have had difficulty in promoting the AQAL Cube to the Integral community is that I was originally attempting this from the Sixth Person Perspective, with the Subtle / Concrete polarity, rather than by starting with the First Person Perspective polarity of Non-possessive / Possessive.
The Differentiation of Person Perspectives in Awareness
So far we have discussed the differentiation of the Persons via the various Third Axis injunctions, but we have not discussed by what mechanism our awareness is able to take different Person-perspectives in the first place. What we do know is that they unfold as a result of cognitive shifts and their associated world views, and that the mechanism must involve the shifts to higher vibrational frequencies of awareness. In my book “Knowing the Knowerthe Integral Science of Self” I explain how the Chakras are the body's Local-to-Nonlocal interfaces between Mind and Consciousness, and that as we evolve through the cognitive ladder of the experiential Mind we also progress through the Chakras as that awareness.
I propose that our Mind, as the Persons awareness, is differentiated by the Chakras; where First Person / First Chakra awareness is that of the Self; Second Person / Second Chakra is that of relationship; Third Person / Third Chakra is of the world; Fourth Person / Fourth Chakra… and so on. But because the Eight Fundamental Perspectives of each Person are full-spectrum, this means that each Chakra is full spectrum, and grows into greater capacity as we evolve. In other words, the First Chakra of an evolved person is operating in a higher First Person capacity/frequency than an unevolved “survivalist”. So the injunction for each Person's level of awareness is contingent on the vibrational frequency of the correlated Chakra.
As a sidebar comment here, I suggest the differentiation between Third Impersonal awareness and Third Person awareness is that of the Third and Fourth Chakras respectively: where the Third Impersonal deals with objective reality of Third Chakra awareness, while the Third Person deals with the subjective reality of Fourth Chakra awarenessin being able to place oneself into someone else's perspective.
Neale, L. The AQAL Cube for Dummies. Integral Leadership Review, June 2011
Neale, L. Integral Relativityan update, Sept. 2016. Integral World.
Riso, D. & Hudson, R. 1996. Personality Types.
Wilber, K. 2000. Integral Psychology. Shambhala, Boston.
Wilber, K. 2006. Integral Spirituality. Integral Books, Boston.