The Moral Imperative to Help Ukraine

Kateryna Yasko Audio, Deep Transformation, Ethical, Free, Moral, World Affairs 32 Comments

“If Russia stops fighting, there will be no war. If Ukraine stops fighting, there will be no more Ukraine.”

Integral leaders Kateryna Yasko, Vytautas Bučiūnas, and Bence Gánti illuminate many of the most poignant and pressing questions of our time, brought to the fore by the ongoing war in Ukraine: Can postmodern people embrace a warrior consciousness when necessary? Are Russians who explicitly support the war worthy of compassion? Can people remain sane and humane while at the same time taking up arms? How can we handle the effects of the psychological trauma that will cascade over generations? And how do we prevent the mass delusion and psychosis that is so easily propagated via modern media technology?

What are the global consequences of the Russian war on Ukraine? The trillions of dollars now being diverted to defense and military weaponry in the West are trillions of dollars that will not be spent on social programs, global health, education, climate change, and food—many people in Africa will starve as a result of this war on the breadbasket, wheat-producing Ukraine. What is wrong with democracy if its leaders can’t step up to the plate, be authentic, strong, and stand up for what is right, while autocrats do whatever they please? A powerful, heart wrenching conversation asking the right questions, pointing towards the answers.

If you would like to learn more about the fundraiser iAwake is running with Kateryna Yasko and Vytautas Bučiūnas, who are giving on-the-ground support to Ukrainian refugees in the bordering countries, please click here.

Recorded April 15, 2022.

Topics & Timestamps: Part 1

  • Ukraine update: the level of trauma has grown very high in the last month, both inside and outside Ukraine, with the discoveries in Bucha and elsewhere (03:18)
  • Everyone feels guilty: the people who have fled, the people in the cities, the people in territorial defense: everyone feels a strong need to contribute more (05:03)
  • The West is consolidating; there’s less naivete about Russia (07:45)
  • People around the world can and need to contribute (09:34)
  • True heroism is coming to the fore; this could be a wake up call for a lot of us (11:35)
  • Bence Ganti, Integral leader and director of the Integral European Conference, talks about the situation in Hungary and the coming IEC in May 2022 (12:32)
  • Kateryna’s perspective on recent weeks: facing an overwhelming, multi-fronted battle on all levels, it’s impossible to give yourself space to take care of yourself (15:40)
  • In Russia, children in school are taught only propaganda; refugee children are traumatized and don’t speak the language of their host countries (18:28)
  • Disappointment and frustration with opinion leaders, prominent intellectuals in the West, writing articles totally disconnected from the realities of the Ukrainian situation (19:55)
  • Ukraine is slowing gaining agency on several fronts (21:35)
  • This is a meta historic conflict; the West saying this conflict is their fault or the US’ fault is going too far; Russia has been threatening Ukraine since before the US existed (24:40)
  • Otto Scharmer’s article about collaborative diplomacy is not good enough; it’s abstract and divorced from the physical realities of the situation (27:52)
  • The reality is: “If Russia stops fighting, there will be no war. If Ukraine stops fighting, there will be no more Ukraine.” (30:38)
  • What is the most strategic response we can make in this situation to directly address this tragedy and its needs? (32:38)
  • Children in primary school are very tuned in to the collective: smart teachers are using military analogies when teaching (35:12)
  • We have to integrate the “red” stage of development in the educational system…we have to let boys play with guns and speak about it (37:40)
  • We need an Integral stage to understand when to act with which stages (38:57)
  • Green = a postmodern stage where we strive for harmony, unity, authenticity, connectedness and believe only with love we will solve all conflicts; red = the warrior stage; Integral = a yogi with a rifle (40:35)
  • Ukrainians fighting from a place of love, somehow they are integrated (43:17)

Topics & Timestamps: Part 2

  • The difference between Ukrainians and Russians is Ukrainians long to be and remain human and humane; but Russians have been through a long dehumanization process (01:00)
  • How can we stick to the Geneva Conventions and not become what we’re fighting against? (01:59)
  • Around 60% of Russians on the street honestly believe they are liberating Ukraine (04:59)
  • The power of today’s information and communication technology, coupled with our awful vulnerability to delusional thinking, is a recipe for inducing culture-wide psychosis (07:05)
  • The analogy with Nazi Germany and Putin’s Russia is right on (10:30)
  • Are Russians who are brainwashed and explicitly supporting warfare worthy of our compassion? (11:30)
  • What are the global ramifications, the psychological and cultural implications, of this great tragedy that will affect global health, social welfare, even the survival of the human species? (16:20)
  • The systems we have been trusting to maintain global order were not good enough to save us from this challenge (20:34)
  • How to come up with more Integral, inclusive solutions and systems of sensemaking? (21:22)
  • The leadership factor in the West over the last 20+ years has been reactive, compliant, generally avoiding facing reality – until Zelensky (Vytautas’ keynote at IEC will be about this) (21:52)
  • Working on solutions at the Integral European Conference (IEC) May 2022 online and in Budapest (25:05)
  • How this invasion has opened hearts, created an explosion of trust, people are really “showing up” (Kateryna’s keynote at IEC will be about this) (26:57)
  • Showing up – what will you do when it’s time to act? There is a way to contribute for everyone (28:09)
  • iAwake’s Funnel to Help, Heal, and Support the Ukrainian People (30:15)
  • IEC will be an opportunity to involve people from Latin America in the fight for democracy and freedom in Ukraine, and hear about their ongoing wars as well (32:35)
  • IEC will sponsor a global discussion on war and peace everywhere; there are more than 100 wars going on at any given time on the planet (35:06)
  • Are only autocratic leaders allowed to be bold, decisive, real, and authentic? (37:31)
  • Zelensky is the role model for other democratic leaders (38:50)

Resources & References

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Kateryna Yasko

About Kateryna Yasko

Kateryna Yasko (Ukraine) is an organizational psychologist, a trainer for the development of emotional intelligence, trust, cooperation, effective communication, and peaceful conflict resolution, and co-founder of the consulting company U-Integral. Her academic background is in the area of international relations and law (MSc), business (MBA), and psychology (MSc). She bases her programs on the principles of Ken Wilber’s Integral approach and Marshall Rosenberg’s Nonviolent Communication, and is certified in Spiral Dynamics Integral and in Susanne Cook-Greuter’s Maturity Assessment Profile. Kateryna is also head of the public association “International Institute for Integral Development” and a founder of the educational initiative EMPATIA.PRO, specializing in bringing holistic approaches into educational leadership and learning cultures.

Vytautas Bučiūnas

About Vytautas Bučiūnas

Vytautas Bučiūnas (Lithuania–Ukraine) is a co-founder and managing partner of U-Integral, an integral leadership development company. Vytautas also has vast experience as a top manager in the banking sector including working as the Head of Resident Office, Senior Banker, Associate Director at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (Russia, Ukraine). Vytautas’ professional profile includes building organizational units from scratch, carrying out large-scale transformations, and managing crises. Vytautas is a certified Integral Master Coach™ (Integral Coaching Canada), an ICF Professional Certified Coach (PCC)™, and the only business consultant in Ukraine certified in Leadership Maturity Framework – Maturity Assessment for Professionals (LMF-MAP) and Global Leadership Profile (GLP). Vytautas explores the development of human consciousness and complex social systemsfrom a holistic perspective. He considers the growth of a critical mass of mature leaders with systemic thinking and transformational capabilities to be the key to society’s healthy development.

Bence Gánti

About Bence Gánti

Bence Ganti, MA, co-founder of Integral Europe (since 2012) and also co-founder and  director of the Integral European Conferences (since 2014) and founder of the Integral Academy in Budapest (since 2006), is an integrally oriented clinical psychologist, vipassana meditator, and international teacher of integral psychology.

John Dupuy

About John Dupuy

John Dupuy is co-founder and CEO of iAwake Technologies, a company that creates cutting-edge, high-tech brainwave entrainment soundtracks that support the healing of emotional/shadow issues, deepen meditation, mental focus, creativity, and flow states, and enhance a daily integral transformative practice. John has been working personally and professionally with brainwave entrainment technology since 2004, and travels internationally to teach and inspire on the subjects of Integral Transformative Practice and Integral Recovery®. John is also the author of Integral Recovery: A Revolutionary Approach to the Treatment of Alcoholism and Addiction (SUNY Press, 2013), winner of the 2013 USA Best Book Award, and co-host of the popular Journey of Integral Recovery podcast. John also hosts the online series Spiritual Tech Talks 2.0, in which he converses with leaders, pioneers, and inventors on the current wave of emerging spiritual technologies.

Roger Walsh

About Roger Walsh

Roger Walsh, M.D., Ph.D., has spent nearly a quarter century researching and practicing in the world's great spiritual traditions. His critically acclaimed book, Essential Spirituality, is a summary of that wisdom, outlining the seven spiritual practices common to the world's major religions.

Notable Replies

  1. I think it’s important to go one step further and see this as a test for Humanity in general.

    Putin is only one of many leaders who would do very similar things if they have the opportunity, and would be supported by a large part of the population or even the majority.

    It’s god to see the West is less Naïve about Russia - the next step is to be less naive about the support such a leader can gain within their own countries. Then, the absolute moral imperative to stand up to not just the leaders, but also the supporters.

    As an example, we can insert alternative words into this Phrase “If Russia stops fighting, there will be no war. If Ukraine stops fighting, there will be no Ukraine”
    “If X stops fighting Y, there will be no problem. If Y stops fighting X, there will be no Y”
    There are many instances of this playing out in US politics and other developed Western countries.

    Integral = A Yogi with a Rifle.
    Not just in Ukraine, but in the USA as well, especially. This would have been a very unpopular thing to say prior to Russia’s invasion, but now seems more relevant.

    The question of compassion (timestamp 11:30) towards brainwashed a population is not limited to Russia - but is very relevant in the USA as well. A large portion of the US population honestly believes they have the right to overturn an election and place Trump into power - AND ARE ACTING OUT THAT AGENDA in the United States.

    I think it’s absolutely crazy that I posted this just 3 days prior to the Russian Invasion.

  2. You’ve managed to get in your trademark digs on the US. Why not stay on topic?

    This is a fear that you have @raybennett as well as many others. In reality this fear is unfounded regarding overturning valid elections…

    The real fear is that Far Left “Progressives” know that their agenda is bankrupt and all hope is lost when election fraud is minimized and we reinstate integrity of 1 Citizen, 1 vote.
    Your fears are not unfounded. You should be scared shirtless so to say… You will lose signicant political influence (power) without the ability to harvest ballots, print additional ballots, manage the collection and counting of ballots. Cest la vie!

    And of course we should have all acted decisively to defend Ukraine from a 19th century “imperialst” simply operating in the mold of every other Putin/Catherine/Romanov/Stalin the Great Russian. Sometimes the most “Integral” thing to do is to just do what’s right, decisively.

  3. Ya right, “ the Ukraine government has been Russia controlled until very recently”

    Is that what you really meant to say?

  4. As we slide into a relativistic assessment of self determination

    It’s not a relativistic assessment, it’s a developmental assessment :slight_smile:

    Looking up Ground of Being I’m finding religious definitions.

    Yes, I was talking about the “waking up” process, one of the fundamental paths of integral living, along with growing up (developing through the stages of consciousness), cleaning up (shadow work), and showing up (flourishing in your behaviors, relationships, career, etc.)

    “Waking up” is the spiritual piece, and describes states of consciousness that in many ways sit at the very core of Ken’s work. The “Ground of Being” is one popular expression for “ultimate reality” — the seamless, nondual integration of self and not-self, subject and object, inside and outside, emptiness and form, etc.

    One metaphor that Ken likes to use is “the Ground of Being is the paper upon which the quadrants are drawn”, which I always liked.

    It doesn’t appear that you are actually a supporting member of Integral Life, but in case you sign up one day, here are a few pieces you might enjoy. Some are available for free.

  5. I haven’t listened to the podcasts yet, but any such conversation will be haunted by the spectre of racist bias. The Ukraine crisis is a humanitarian disaster for sure, but it is not the worst in the world. That ranking belongs to Afghanistan followed by Ethiopia and Yemen, all non-Caucasian populations. I am not aware of any discussion of a “moral imperative” to assist those people. If anybody knows of one, please let me know.

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