“In order for any sort of genuine transformation to occur — or any sort of real “revolution” — not only does the revolution have to be led by an elite, that elite must possess a new paradigm, which means that it must possess, not a new theory or worldview, but a new type of social practice, mode of production, concrete behavioral injunctions, or experimental exemplars. These social practices, injunctions, or exemplars — these new paradigms and methodologies — generate, enact, bring forth, and illumine new types of experiences, occasions, data, phenomena. Around these new experiences, data, or illuminations, there do indeed then grow new theories, new worldviews, new superstructures.””Ken WilberA
re you concerned about things like social justice, wealth inequality, and the continuing cultural inertias of racism and bigotry? Have you ever wanted to, say, reform a police department or two? Are you interested in things like protecting voting rights for disenfranchised groups of people? Are you naturally inclined to want to relieve suffering for people by “bringing the most depth to the most span”, as we say here in Integral Land?
Congratulations, you might be woke!
But are you equally concerned about the sorts of extremism that we are seeing on the Left — performative virtue signaling, growing illiberalism and intolerance for conflicting perspectives and free speech, a backslide away from healthy Green pluralism and toward totalizing Amber narratives?
Well, maybe you’e not so woke after all. Maybe you are actually “post-woke”, and have been waiting for discussions like this one to eventually come down the line.
Which is why Ryan and I wanted to have this conversation, and invite all of us to inhabit our own most embodied “post-woke” leadership, allowing us to recognize and rescue the most important babies of “social justice” from the bathwater of political extremism.
How do we do so? By getting “wokeness” (and the Green altitude as a whole) out of our shadows, while bringing more caution and discernment to the inherent shadows of the woke movement itself.
And one of the best ways we can get the Green altitude out of our shadows is to simply shift our frame just little bit:
Rather than thinking off the Green altitude as “post-modern”, let’s simultaneously think of it as being “pre-integral”.
There is something about that reframe that reminds us of our obligation to properly transclude the Green altitude in our integral embrace and get it out of our own shadow. Because at the integral altitude, all of these previous stages become part of our own interior anatomy — which means that if we are engaged in unconscious warfare against the Green altitude, we are denying one of the highest stages of our own being. It’s like walking around with your head cut off.
The Green altitude, after all, is also associated with “early vision-logic”, which is why a great number of important green terms, concepts, and deep structures are maintained and updated at the integral altitude — concepts like “pluralism” (which, for example, then ripens as “integral methodological pluralism”), as well as “constructivism” and “perspectivism”.
Even the woke emphasis on “identity” is taken up again at the integral stage, which simply offers a broader spectrum of identity to draw upon beyond our typologically-based “intersectionality of identity”, taking us all the way to the Supreme Identity itself.
This reframe may also help better facilitate “post-woke” discussions, while helping us to better regulate the green altitude by reminding it of who and what it is actually supposed to be (pluralistic, empathetic, and tolerant).
We hope you enjoy the discussion. Is this reframe from “postmodern” to “pre-integral” as helpful for you as it is for us? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Previous Episodes of Inhabit
Mark Fischler and Corey deVos
Mark and Corey have a rich and far-reaching discussion about our present political realities and challenges, dedicating the first half of the discussion to some of the major headlines from the last few weeks, and then exploring ways to elevate “woke culture” into a genuine “post-woke” integral sensibility.
Justin Miles, Corey deVos and Ryan Oelke
Spiritual conversations often emphasize the importance of overcoming our resistance and accepting the world for what it is, exactly as it is. However, there are times when we don’t need to overcome our resistance, we need to fully inhabit our resistance. We can’t simply accept what is, we need to put ourselves on the line for what can and should be. How can we bring more mindfulness, skillfulness, and embodiment to our resistance, even while seeing everything as always-already perfect?
Greg Thomas, Mark Palmer, Diane Musho Hamilton and Corey deVos
Diane and Corey are joined by guests Greg Thomas and Mark Palmer in this groundbreaking discussion about racism, anti-racism, and racial integration, highlighting a number of critical views that have been largely missing from the larger conversation that’s been taking place culturally in recent weeks, months, and years.
Aneesah Wilhelmstätter, Lisa Frost and Corey deVos
What do we do when experiences of bias arise within our practice, or even within our practice community? What is the best way to verify whether these biases are real in the first place, and overcome them when they are?
Mark Fischler and Corey deVos
Why do we see so many cases of apparent police abuse being recorded so frequently, but punished so rarely? What are some possible solutions that can help create more social trust for our police organizations, and a more peaceful society for all of us? Watch as Mark and Corey take a careful look at the Derek Chauvin verdict — and at the state of policing itself in America — as they offer their own personal views and try to sort through the conflicting narratives surrounding this tragically controversial cultural fault line.
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About Corey deVos
Corey W. deVos is Editor-in-Chief of Integral Life, as well as Managing Editor of KenWilber.com. He has worked for Integral Institute/Integal Life since Spring of 2003, and has been a student of integral theory and practice since 1996. Corey is also a professional woodworker, and many of his artworks can be found in his VisionLogix art gallery.
About Ryan Oelke
Ryan Oelke is a co-founder of Buddhist Geeks and founder of Awakening in Life. He has an MSEd in counseling psychology and is contemplative teacher of awakening, healing, and embodiment. He has 18 years experience in meditation, particularly in the Tibetan Buddhist and Dzogchen lineages, he is a Buddhist Geeks teacher, and is a fully certified teacher in Judith Blackstone’s Realization Process. Ryan teaches meditation and a way of living dedicated to revealing natural presence and awakening in each moment of our lives, regardless of how it appears to us. He lives in the beautiful mountains of Asheville, NC with his partner Alyssa and stepdaughter Fiona.