Some aren’t going to buy what I’m peddling today, but that’s OK. It’s still America, no matter what the Discord’s CEO thinks (Commie bastard!). First off, my writing is not designed to offend the many dickwads that don’t get it. At least one individual is wondering about this color coding thingie (CCT) that I keep mentioning in my posts. You will be hearing more and more about Spiral Dynamics, Transpersonal Psychology, and the evolution of consciousness, because the truth has a tendency to stick around, like the Ghetto Shaman after last call. Of course, on the downside of this subject matter, anything even hinting at a hierarchy of ideas is always met with condemnation, er…like the Ghetto Shaman after last call.
Many are offended whenever the spectrum of human development is debated, but Wilber’s version of Spiral Dynamics theory is designed as a developmental holarchy (meaning transcends and includes what comes before, or nested.) This is a variation of the Great Chain of Being which permeates ancient wisdom. The best example is the progression of atom, molecule, cell, tissue, and organism. Each level includes what comes before it, but also transcends it, by adding something novel or emergent (like in the case of the Ghetto Shaman’s teachings, drink specials).
Ken Wilber and others assert that consciousness evolves through a similar holarchy process. Anthropologists have studied the development of cultures across the globe and found that they typically follow a pattern—a pattern that can correlate to different levels of consciousness. The concept is charitable enough, besides, who am I to question the order of the Universe? I didn’t build the damn thing. This is often depicted as a growing spiral (thus Spiral Dynamics) and, yes Cranko, intelligent people are stuck at each and every level. If I studied fascism, torture, and military tactics for my whole life in Nazi Germany, I might become a shrewdly intelligent member of team Hitler, but I would still be functioning at a low level of consciousness (not to mention morality). These days, worshipping the all mighty dollar has generated some thought distortions of its own.
This color coding was originally laid out by Beck and Cowan and was eventually expounded upon by Ken Wilber. Wilber and others assert that the natural progression of human consciousness moves from tribal or group focused (egocentric–Bin Laden) to country focused (ethnocentric–Reagan) to more globally aware (worldcentric–Obama) to a perspective inclusive of all life forms (cosmocentric–Ghetto Shaman). OK, another bad example.
In color codingville the break down is as follows: red = tribal, blue = fundamentalism, orange = entrepreneurial/science, and green = liberalism, and so on.
One of Wilber’s many keen insights is that conservatives tend to blame the individual for their problems (pick yourself up by your boot straps, you damned hippy) and liberals tend to blame society, culture, or the government for everyone’s problems (the heroin addicted murderer just needs more methadone and a great big hug). Therefore, it has always been an internal vs. external debate. Often both miss the point, because they don’t address all of Wilber’s levels and quadrants. Bill Clinton, using some of Wilber’s advice, came up with the idea to stress both support with personal responsibility—that all important third way. Obama seems oblivious to this distinction, which is frightening. Let’s say, you issue endless welfare checks to a crack addict; the money will likely go to crack and increase the numbers of those addicted (Hint: this is not harm reduction, libertards). Give the addict support only if he/she engages in treatment, so in a couple of years he/she might return to society and just sell crack instead of abuse it. This moves them from a tribal level of consciousness (red) all the way to entrepreneurial (orange). OK, bad example.
Conservatives would slash all or most behavioral health services across the board when every one dollar spent likely saves society ten. This is not being fiscally conservative, it’s being stupid and irresponsible. On the other hand, liberals tend to enable the terminally stagnant, which will destroy our budget and serve no legitimate purpose (like Dave Atsals). Universal Healthcare may be this next storm on the horizon. This middle way might be to insure all of our children and those truly disabled. Universal Healthcare might be a nice goal for the future, if and when we have a thriving society. HINT: THIS IS NOT THAT TIME.
George W. Bush, functioning between a fundamental/mythic level (blue) and entrepreneurial/rational (orange), couldn’t understand why a Jefferson or an Adams type figure never emerged from a Baghdad mosque. And here I would have been happy to see a Garfield or a Cleveland emerge from a certain Crawford ranch.
Spiral Dynamics peeps cupped their foreheads in wonderment at the sheer idiocy of this man’s logic. Bush had no clue and probably didn’t care about what sociologists and anthropologists have worked on for years regarding Nation Building 101. We see how well that worked out. Countries and cultures typically don’t skip levels willy nilly. They tend to work through each level at different speeds, but ultimately in the same predictable order. This is why China’s shift to entrepreneurialism is a good thing. No one goes from Osama bin Laden to Barak Obama overnight (unless you use medical marijuana/two hits a day oughtta do it).
You know, dude, I don’t want to knock those buildings down anymore. Let’s just score some chips.
My wife has an interesting twist to this theory. She feels there are smaller circles, which represent our societal trends. In essence, societal mega trends resemble a Spirograph (if you remember those). These little sociological circles spiral up and never sink as far down as the last cycle. This, like Spiral Dynamics, still puts us on a gradually upward trajectory, or Spirographic Dianetics (my wife, 2009).
To put it another way, we will continue to move away from fundamentalism, and this perspective should shift within the entrepreneurial range, hopefully soon. So each historic cycle will swing downward, but won’t quite reach the depth of the last round. The bottom of this cycle, which my guess would be amidst the darker days of the Bush Fears, won’t be as bad as the last cycle. In other words, the patriotards of today (at the bottom of the circle) are not going to descend into McCarthyism (despite Hannity’s best efforts). This is a good thing, if true. Although, listen to a Teabagger interviewed and one begins to wonder.
Each group at each level hangs onto their perspective like the gospel and each group both fears and attacks all the other layers. I tend to attack the basal brand of conservatism championed by Fox News and their idiotic ilk. They recently booed the only true conservative, Ron Paul, off the stage. What they stand for is fear, greed, and stupidity. Traditional values and real issues like abortion are lost in their pre-rational, infantile propaganda. Again, Cranko, don’t let the least common denominator champion your perspective. Or why not just commit hari-kari by ImPalin yourself in 2012?
Science is king for many, but science (orange) has painted itself into a corner and has become scientism. Even the Dawkins of the world will eventually get the meme-o. They should have copped a clue after the discovery of quantum physics, but scientists have a blind spot the size of the M33 X-7 black hole for anything that does not fit snugly into their collapsing paradigm.
Unfortunately, the U.S. may be moving too fast into empathetic/liberalism (green), which is a problem. Frankly, people are stepping behind door number two, because Bush and Co. made number two outside of door number one. Inherent dangers exist if we shift into this next perspective ill-prepared. Jimmy Carter is a great example. He was right about a lot of things, but he couldn’t implement anything in the real world because he skipped shit. See how well that worked out. Wilber asserts, and rightly so, that liberal pluralists are dangerous because, although they lean more toward the higher perspective (with its new emergent trick, empathy), they run the risk of cultural relativism. Thus enters are the Fox News fodder, the appeasers, who would allow Sharia Law into their own country. Good example, Belgium. If those tribal bastards screw with my beer, why I’ll…
Think happy thoughts, think happy thoughts (sorry).
So, if you believe Sharia Law is a lower perspective than Americano, then it stands to reason that colors may exist in our own country’s debates, right? Entrepreneurial types, including science and business (orange) and liberals (green) have reached high levels of consciousness. Bravo peeps! But, according to Wilber, we’re not done yet. His integral levels, similar to the Taoists’ Third Way, are probably a conversation for another post. But we should develop ever more effective ways to bridge these gaps between levels without offending, the other shitheads involved. I hope Wilber covers this in his upcoming book Integral Politics, but he stays so frigging aloof it kills me. If he would just bitch-slap a nun, just once (for me). Come on Ken, you can do it.
Unlike Uncle Wilber, I, representing the barely integral, am not afraid to get my hands dirty (so nuns beware). And, on that note, yes, I believe there are some clear examples of higher and lower perspectives. Condoning torture is a lower perspective than those condemning it; Sharia Law is a lower perspective than the Golden Rule; selfishness is a lower perspective than selflessness; and, yes, Dick Cheney is functioning from a lower perspective than, say, Jimmy Carter. In fact, the distance between these two is Mt. Everest vs. the Marianas Trench. If you disagree, increase your meditation sessions, count your breath for a year, and as Wilber asserts, “get back to me.” The glass ceilings involved in each level make this stuff heated, especially if you’re as ineloquent as, yours truly. With any luck this fear driven movement (Rove) will be usurped by a compassion and peace driven one (integral) at some point in our future. But let’s also hope we will not become so wussily benevolent during these green days that we will allow Sharia Law into this land.
Republicans actually fear when Obama mentions mutual interest and mutual respect. Empathy and pluralism, outside of national borders, are concepts beyond these folks. And to quote my father, these days republicans only care about you if you are unborn, frozen (stem cells), or brain dead. Living real people of the planet Earth: you’re on your own. I direct my ire at these folks a lot, but only out of love. They should know better. But we are just going to have to come to terms with the fact that a shockingly large faction of our society still feel we need to torture to keep us safe, while pollution and global warming are non-issues. They continue to adhere to a whole host of sociopathic policies detrimental to other societies, our own ecosystem, and ourselves–all in the interest of maintaining their stock options.
Sorry, Bill O’Reilly, but you are most certainly not looking out for me.
Pokey McDooris and I met a spiritual guru, Robert LaChance (Unity Psychology creator) recently and he said that when he met Karl Rove in a book store a few years back, he tried to make a dent in the impossibly dense neurotic fear-bubble surrounding this man’s aura. He came away from the encounter with a migraine and a sick feeling in the pit of his stomach (echoes of the Ghetto Shaman’s Midget Reiki?). LaChance wanted so much to impress upon Rove the error of his ways, but he failed miserably. Like LaChance, I don’t know how to approach this problem either. My Muse is humor. She insists I make fun of people, which isn’t always the best approach. As society shakes and quakes through this difficult transition, I will continue to see the humor through the horror. Endings are always painful, like the Ghetto Shaman at last call.
So how do we move forward as a country with so many people on so many different levels of consciousness? You can start by trusting your own judgment and not listening to the talking heads of our tanked media. Independent thought is wonderful. And, remember, we are being pitted against each other for political gain.
Ultimately we are responsible for ourselves and our own small part. How we clean up our own attic is the best thing we can do for country and King. In fact, it’s the only thing we can do. I should start taking my own advice, of course, before I start calling people patriotards to counter the Crank’s libertards, but, oh well…it’s damn funny (stupid Muse).
Still not sure where to begin? Trying reading Ken Wilber. I would start with Integral Life Practice or a Brief History of Everything. He is a brilliant dude and he believes the Daily Discord is “consistently misrepresenting my views.”
After you do some reading, try some meditation before you try medication. You may even throw out your antidepressants or your benzos (when really it’s much more lucrative to sell them on street). Or, you can always start with the Ghetto Shaman’s barely legal Kundalini Cruise (not recommended), or by digging through your own psyche with Dr. Sterling Hogbien’s patented ‘enhanced archeological techniques’ (really not recommended).
But, as I’ve said before, no matter how you do it, get wellness soon.