IN PodcastKen Wilber - An Interview with Myriades 1. Part 3. Taking Perspectives on the Culture Wars.

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In an interview for Myriades 1, an Argentinean cultural magazine, Ken discusses the difference between modernity and post-modernity, and how an Integral Approach exposes the difference between flatland pluralism and a truly developmental, Integral view on growth and distinctive maturity....


Gaspar Segafredo, Editor-in-Chief of Myriades 1, an Argentinean cultural magazine with an integral approach.


Gaspar and Ken engage this last section of their dialogue with vigorous inquiry.  Gaspar begins by asking if democracy, the United Nations, and human rights fundamentally stem from "pluralism."  The answer, as the evidence shows, is yes and no.  Modernity, starting with the Western Enlightenment, attempted to free itself from dogmatic mythic religion, and declare that all humans are equal.  In fact, enacting that impulse has been more of a progressive movement—not a historical moment in time—that continues to this day.  First it was that all (white) men are equal, then including all African (black) men, then including women, then including children.

In a very real way, postmodernity finished the Enlightenment project that modernity started, wherein all human beings—regardless of race, religion, creed, sexuality, etc.—should be accorded the same fundamental human rights.  But postmodernity and the pluralism it encourages can, and has, often gone too far in its impulse to equalize.  It has even gone so far as to deconstruct nearly all meaning whatsoever, which reveals the narcissistic and nihilistic core at the center of a glorious impulse taken to its pathological limits.  This is where an Integral Approach comes into play.       

An Integral Approach takes the many gifts and insights of pluralism, and then finds the patterns that connect.  All views have their right to exist, but that doesn’t mean that all views are equal.  Here, Gaspar and Ken explore developmental studies, and how—universally, research shows—people move from egocentric (I, me), to ethnocentric (you, us), to worldcentric (all of us), to (all sentient beings) Kosmocentric.  This is not merely an academic consideration.  This is a reflection of the world we all live in, where 70% of the world population is at ethnocentric or lower (to put it bluntly, Nazis or lower). 

Here, Gaspar and Ken discuss developmental stages in terms of the ability to take perspectives.  For example, egocentric can take a 1st-person perspective, ethnocentric can take a 2nd- person perspective, worldcentric-modern can take a 3rd-person perspective, worldcentric-postmodern can take a 4th-person perspective, and integral-Kosmocentric can take a 5th-person perspective (and beyond).  All of those stages of development, and stages of perspective-taking, are allowed, included, and embraced in an Integral Approach.  The question is, how can we help people grow into more mature, complex perspectives?  This is one of the many fascinating topics that Gaspar and Ken explore in this introductory, yet leading-edge, dialogue….

(Click here for full dialogue.)

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