A New Republic of the Heart: The Art and Practice of Sacred Activism

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We often talk about the “Four Ups” of integral living: Growing Up, Waking Up, Cleaning Up, and Showing Up. The first three all have to do with our “inner work”, the often-grueling personal work we do within our own consciousness and closest relationships. But the fourth — Showing Up — is where the fruits of our labor truly begin to ripen, where all of our accumulated knowledge, personal growth, spiritual practice, and shadow work become a limitless source of strength, presence, and wisdom, allowing to us engage the many dimensions and challenges of our world in a far more meaningful and impactful way, from becoming a better parent, to becoming a better leader, to becoming a better citizen of the world.

After all, if our practice does not help us to show up more fully in the world, if it does not compel us to enact real change within each of our own spheres of influence, if it does not equip us to directly confront the many terrors and tragedies of our collective unfolding with fearless compassion and skillful action, then what’s the point?

If the sum total of our practice cannot benefit the world around us, exactly what (or whom) are we practicing for?

This is the guidance that Terry Patten offers in his new book, A New Republic of the Heart, inviting us to align our “inner work” with our “outer work” and establish sacred activism as both a fundamental component of our ongoing Integral Life Practice, as well as the ultimate expression of that practice.

Listen as Terry and Ken discuss:

The Paradox of Wholeness: We begin the discussion by exploring two very different definitions of “wholeness” — the unqualifiable wholeness of naked absolute awareness, and the spectrum of relative wholeness of human beings and their ecosystems. Reconciling this paradox — that everything is always already perfect and whole, even while our world, culture, and hearts seem to become increasingly fragmented and broken — is one of the most important (and most challenging) tasks in front of integral activists the world over.

From Heartbreak to Action: Terry and Ken discuss how the ecological and political pressures of climate change are exerting an almost teleological pressure upon our own development, opening the door to a far more complete way of living in the world that is capable of rising to the enormous global challenges that we find ourselves faced with.

The Integral (R)evolution: Ken and Terry explore the evolutionary perspective itself, noting how the most sophisticated models of evolution go far beyond the sort of “survival of the fittest” fundamentalism of scientific materialism. They then turn their attention to a recent study that seems to support Ken’s much-discussed “tipping point” hypothesis — the notion that, once leading-edge ideas begin to saturate about 10% of a given society, those ideas then begin to spread rapidly throughout that society. Finally, Terry and Ken discuss the central importance of Integral Life Practice to our activistic endeavors, and the qualities that make it such a uniquely rewarding approach to personal transformation.

Stay tuned for the second half of this far-reaching dialogue where, among other topics, we explore Integral Activism as “spirit in action”

Text by Corey W. deVos

A New Republic of the Heart: An Ethos for Revolutionaries — A Guide to Inner Work for Holistic Change

A vision to address our environment, economy, politics, culture, and to catalyze the radical whole-system change we need now

Recasting current problems as emergent opportunities, Terry Patten offers creative responses, practices, and conscious conversations for tackling the profound inner and outer work we must do to build an integral future. In practical and personal terms, he discusses how we can all become active agents of a transformation of human civilization and why that is necessary to our continued survival. Patten’s narrative focuses on two aspects of existence — our dynamic but fractured and threatened world, and our underlying wholeness and unity.

Only by honoring both of these realities simultaneously can we make sustainable changes in ourselves, our communities, our body politic, and our planetary life-support system. A New Republic of the Heart provides a comprehensive understanding and inspiring vision for “being the change” in a way that can address the most intractable problems of our time. Patten shows how we can come together in our communities for conversations that matter and describes new communities, enterprises, and forms of dialogue that integrate both inner personal growth work with outer awareness, activism, and service.

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Terry Patten

About Terry Patten

An integral coach, consultant, teacher, and author of four books, Terry's work focuses on serving "the integral heart" by evolving the leading edge of leadership and practice. He was the senior writer and co-author, with Ken Wilber, of Integral Life Practice: A 21st-Century Blueprint for Physical Health, Emotional Balance, Mental Clarity, and Spiritual Awakening.

Ken Wilber

About Ken Wilber

Ken Wilber is a preeminent scholar of the Integral stage of human development. He is an internationally acknowledged leader, founder of Integral Institute, and co-founder of Integral Life. Ken is the originator of arguably the first truly comprehensive or integrative world philosophy, aptly named “Integral Theory”.