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Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Beyond Teal Organizations - What might a Turquoise organization be like - Part 2

Beyond Teal Organizations  -
What might a Turquoise organization be like - Part 2

Same topic as Part 1 of this exploration, different day, different angles.
I begin this exploration by saying that my descriptions are based on my actual experience as a participant in one organization and a number of groups operating from the Turquoise stage of consciousness -- experience over the last 5 years. I have also read about and heard about many other such groups, and a couple of organizations. So this description is not simply abstract theoretical conjecture.

Anyone exploring "Teal" stage of organizational consciousness probably has their own speculations, possibly based on enough experience within predominantly Teal organizations to both sense the limits of that stage, and the wonderful new characteristics emerging here and there, now and then. 
So this little bare beginning to meant as a conversation-starter, a catalyst, an invitation to sense into your own notion about what a Turquoise organizational consciousness might be like, and share that, so that we move along thereby to strengthen the Morphic Field/creative template of that which is available to humanity, hastening the day it appears in more of our experiences! 

I'm also interested in gathering stories about the "limits" experienced in organizations predominantly at Teal consciousness which prompt the evolution toward Turquoise functioning.

The "reality" in which the organization operates shifts, from people-actions-objects-relationships to fields of subtle creative energy which are the same as aliveness/consciousness and in which people, actions, relationships, and objects are expressions of the Purposes of Morphic Fields of conscious creative subtle energy. Those purposes are not fully knowable by the humans.

The organization metaphor is now Morphic Field.

The three breakthroughs might be:
1. Wholeness of individuals uplevels to Embeddedness/Connectivity/Oneness/Shared consciousness/Wholeness of the organization and its context-environment and the world/Kosmos.
2. Evolutionary Purpose uplevels to Transpersonal/Cosmic Purpose
3. Self-Management uplevels to Flow/Shared Consciousness
"The emergent future" becomes the touchstone for what people choose to sense and what guides actions, but actions are not "decided on," they flow as natural impulses and inclinations.

Coordination of actions and decisions for Purpose is done not in conscious awareness but in "super-conscious" or in the shared morphic field of awareness. This results in constant usual synchronicities and "miracles."

Beyond Teal Organizations - What might a Turquoise organization be like - Part 1

Beyond Teal Organizations -
What might a Turquoise organization be like - Part 1

The context for this exploration is the massive global movement energized by the publishing of Frederic Laloux's book Reinventing Organizations, in which, using Ken Wilber's developmental framework terminology, he traces stages of development of organizational consciousness through Teal/Yellow/Integral, characterizing the positive breakthroughs of each stage compared to the previous one.

Now "going Teal" is all the rage, and it might be time to take an exploratory peek ahead. What is the "next stage" after "the next stage?" What might a Turquoise organization be like? What might be the "Turquoise breakthroughs?" And what limits on Teal would prompt those?

Let's explore these questions. This is a helicopter trip around the tip of an iceberg. So much more could be said. But it's a question which is going to begin to arise as more and more organizations move toward Teal as their "next-stage consciousness." What's the "next stage" after Teal? 

Laloux's "breakthroughs" of each stage of organizational consciousness were discerned empirically, by his observing organizations and forming generalizations. There are really few Turquoise organizations, but I know of two, and am part of one, and have observed any number of Turquoise groups, so my descriptions are formed empirically from generalizing also. The descriptions might be sharper, probably are even "missing the point" in some ways. But I offer them as a springboard for those who think they might be moving beyond Teal somehow, and want a bit of a map to the new territory. (This video is Ken Wilber's delightful description of the functions and limitations of (verbal) maps of new territories of consciousness.)

My fervent hope would be for some map-makers to engage with one another to chart THIS territory as well. Some excellent maps already exist in the many articles and books emerging on "Higher We-spaces" from within the Integral community; those can easily be transferred to guiding us within new organizational territories. I'm just making a tiny beginning of doing that.

If the overall metaphor for a Teal organization is "a living system," then the overall metaphor for a Turquoise organization might be "a web/morphic field of consciousness."

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Exploring Exploration: Contemplation vs Inquiry

Exploring Exploration: Contemplation vs Inquiry

There are of course many ways to "explore" something. In the realm of the "subtle," (as distinguished from "concrete" or "empty/causal") both contemplation and inquiry are often used, particularly as spiritual practices in "spiritual" explorations. I've found it useful to make a distinction between contemplation and inquiry, though they are often equated, so here's my exploration of the difference, for whatever value that might be to you.

In a nutshell, "contemplation" is simply resting attention on a single object: a person, thing, situation, concept, emotion, sensation, and returning attention to that, when it wanders, and allowing whatever arises in awareness, to be noted. Inquiry, on the other hand, is the same thing, but with a question in mind, as a focus, a question to which attention is returned when it wanders, and noting whatever "answers" to the question arise.

Contemplation is NOT the kind of single-focus attention used by some meditators to "quiet the mind." In this kind of contemplation, there is no effort to quiet the mind. Simply quiet openness, in which busy-mind arises and operates, or not. The "yang" aspect is the returning to quiet openness of awareness, when attention is discovered to have "narrowed" or "wandered" but it's not the same as "I must not be thinking thoughts."Nor is it the same as the "thoughts are clouds passing in the sky" of mindfulness meditation, because whatever particular arises in contemplation is of interest; it's just something to make note of, however, not to mull about or think about during the time of contemplation.

I've found contemplation very useful for exploring places I feel stuck in my spiritual growth. For example, a long-term contemplation of the single word/concept "suffering" has yielded awesome insights and catalyzed wonderful non-verbal shifts.

Inquiry is more structured because of the grammar of a multi-word question. However, beyond that, it's basically the same. Attention rests, things arise and pass, the question gets repeated. Answers appear, and are noted, but not "chewed and digested." I have found inquiry to be very useful, also, with a different flavor, and different results, from simpler contemplation.

Both can be combined with writing, though inquiry lends itself to writing better. The challenge is that what arises in both inquiry and contemplation can be non-verbal, and can often be most useful to own's growth if left that way, rather than worded. However, a stream-of-consciousness writing of an inquiry can be extraordinarily useful, especially if the question is allowed to shift, flow, and morph into other questions, according to what arises. Pursuing a natural series of questions "down the rabbit hole" can unravel a lot of tangled thinking, in my experience!

The spiritual teacher Adyashanti called this distinction to my attention. Brief descriptions from his book The Way of Liberation, are these:

(These are isolated sentences excerpted from pages 26ff.)

Inquiry

     To hold a question inwardly in silent and patient waiting....

     Although rooted in stillness, inquiry is the dynamic counterpoint to True      Meditation. Meditation is soft, allowing surrender, while Inquiry demands bold and fearless questioning.

     ...Inquiry belongs entirely to the realm of the soul, [rather than [my words] separate-sense-of-self-ego drives] that dimension of being born of stillness and light that seeks Truth for its own sake.

     [The most-recommended inquiry question is Who am I? or What am I.]

     Inquiry clears away misperceptions and illusions, making one available to the movements of grace.

     Investigate each question slowly and deliberately. Place each question into the stillness of your being. Do not grasp for quick answers. Do not jump to conclusions. Instead, let each question reveal your hidden beliefs and opinions.

     Bring each question the mind poses into the ground of stillness. Meditate on it, ponder it; take your time. Don't answer it with your mind. Be still with only the question. Be very, very still.

     [Truth] is simply awaiting recognition.

     Question your thoughts. Question your stories. Question your assumptions. Question your opinions. Question your conclusions. Question them all into utter emptiness, stillness, and joy. The keys to freedom are in your hands. Use them.

He goes on for several more pages about Inquiry.

Contemplation

About Contemplation, he says (pages 31ff.)

     Contemplation is the art of holding a word or a phrase patiently in the silence and stillness of awareness until it begins to disclose deeper and deeper meanings and understandings.

     [Contemplation transcends logical and linear thought, and opens us to wisdom and Truth as revelation.]

     Take a short phrase as your object of contemplation and simply hold it in your awareness for some time. Do not analyze or philosophize about it. And do not get lost in your imagination either. Just hold the phrase in awareness. Then be still. Let its meaning germinate within you. Then bring the word or phrase back into awareness again. Hold it there for some time, then let it go and be still again. With a little practice you will get the hang of it and find your own rhythm.

He goes on to suggest many thoughts, phrases, words which are exceptionally fruitful for spiritual growth, using contemplation and inquiry.

What is your experience with these methods? Does the distinction seem useful to you? Comments invited below!


by Rev. Alia Aurami, Ph.D., Head Minister, 
Amplifying Divine Light in All Church

"Amplifying Divine Light in All" is a completely independent church fostering empowerment of people to co-create loving, thriving God-realized lives, and wellbeing for everyone, on a clean, peaceful Earth.
Our main religious purpose and mission is to amplify the Divine Light in everyone. When you read this blogpost, you will agree or disagree with its various points, and find new insights, and then you will know more about what is true for you. Knowing more of your own Truth amplifies your Divine Light. Thus providing/presenting this blogpost is one way for us to accomplish our purpose and mission.
This blogpost and our providing/presenting it are therefore a central and essential part of our exercise and practice of our religion. 

None of the contents herein are claimed as absolute truth. They represent one possible perspective which might prove useful for you, and they encourage you to explore your own spiritual truths.

All rights reserved under the Common Law. This means please respect our creatorship.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

We-space: Felt Experiences in 2nd and 3rd Tier WS



 We-space: Felt Experiences 
in 2nd and 3rd Tier WS


I don't know about you, but for me, conceptual exploration at some point has to give air time to the juicier first-person reports and descriptions. The descriptions here are supplementary to, but with some overlap, to the much longer and more detailed first-person experiences I put in my first blogpost on the subject of we-spaces, in June of 2012. http://exploringsecondandthirdtier.blogspot.com/2012/06/exploring-phenomenonexperience-of.html

For the sake of convenience, I've organized the following descriptions sorta within the Integral AQAL framework, using at least Q-quadrants and L-"levels" (which I now prefer always to call "stages"), but using the Spiral Dynamics stage labels which I much prefer to the ever-changing Integral labels for stages.

PLEASE note: I have also, along with other authors in various places, been exploring descriptions of stages of the we-spaces themselves (see many of the blogposts listed on the right of this page.) For the purposes of THIS post, I'm blurring those distinctions into some vague conglomeration of 2nd and 3rd Tier. It is unlikely of course, that some of the latter experiences described below, will be had in we-spaces which themselves are below those 2T-3T stages.) 


Quadrants

We-space occurs in all four quadrants of individual experience: 

UL - the subjective experiences in physical body sensations, mental experiences, feelings/emotions, on concrete, subtle, subtle-energetic, and causal levels of awareness and stages of awareness-growth; 

UR - the behaviors of the practice we find ourselves engaging in while in a we-space, and in carrying out the various "injunctions;" 

LL - the cultural meanings and values we share with others in such higher We-spaces, and especially the experience of the paradoxical new "dominant monad" which can speak as an "I"; 

LR - the systemic, objective, larger-scale factors that are derived from and also influence felt experiences and can both create and reflect, our motivations. These include for example the technological, digital, electronic media of communication a we-space uses and sometimes even creates for its own use. These also include the space-time parameters of our we-space, such as whether we meet in big groups or small groups in person, etc.

As for others, the planetary-scale driving felt-experienced passion for fostering an evolution for a humanity in crisis is for many of us not primarily a results/benefits-driven interest, but is profoundly an expression of the evolutionary impulse moving through/as us on the level of our own life-purpose, identity, passion, and self-actualization through and as, practicing this capacity. 

The descriptions below are organized more by stages than by quadrants, but I believe all quadrants are explicit or implicit there. 

Developmental state-stages and structure-stages

Our felt experiences reflect and derive from all the developmental stages each of us has access to, and also reflect stages and particular purposes of a WS itself. (Stages of WS have been explored in previous blogs (here for 1st Tier, here for 2nd Tier, and here for 3rd Tier. I have made what I consider some useful distinctions among purposes: Exploration, Experimentation, and Employment. )

Our deeply felt irresistible and constant draw​ to participate often in a variety of higher-conscious we-spaces is an evolutionary call. We know that not just from our cognitive understanding of the role and potential of collective consciousness in humanity's conscious evolution. We identify that the call as evolutionary also because our full humanity is also irresistibly drawn: motivating feelings/experiences are generated from every developmental stage of consciousness we have access within us to, in their transmuted version as us now.

Many people report these same full-developmental-spectrum felt experiences as the texture, the fabric, perhaps even the picture woven into the tapestry of Zone 1 and Zone 3 experience of higher We-spaces. Here's a very partial list, and nothing here seems unique to me; I hear others reporting each of these, at various times in various places.

For our Beige, there is the oft-reported palpable "safety, trust, warmth, comfortableness" as well as a naturalness of Oneness of inner and outer -- being "out there" beyond space and time yet grounded in our body, having it become one of our sensors of the larger We. My breathing slows and deepens; the experience is like group meditation except we are speaking spontaneously. Along with extraordinary aliveness and exhilaration, even ecstasy, is a paradoxical

Friday, December 26, 2014

Yellow to Turquoise, Individual to Collective, Parts to Whole?

​ 
 Yellow to Turquoise, Individual to Collective, Parts to Whole?

Hey, an insight which might prove heuristic for me and for you -- about the swings between individual-focus and group-focus as worldviews develop along the spiral.

I was contemplating a difference between Yellow and Turquoise. Yellow is focused on the health, wellbeing, getting-along, working-together, systemic harmonization, of EACH, EVERY, and ANY person or group of persons no matter where they are on the spiral. Yellow is coming from that perspective, and developing actual capacities to foster and achieve such purposes.

Turquoise, we might say, then focuses on the health, wellbeing, getting along, working together of ALL persons and/or groups. The shift is from Every to All. This is often listed as one instance of the swing along the spiral between "warm" colors which are characterized as more "individual-concerned" and cool colors which are more "group/collective-concerned."​ The word "whole" is often used with respect to Turquoise: focus on the whole planet, the whole of humanity, taking a holistic perspective.

However, I don't remember hearing anyone characterize the "warm" phases as focused on "parts of next whole." It is noted in Integral Theory that each "collective" gets larger in some ways (smaller in other ways) along the spiral, thus each "collective" transcends and includes the previous wholes which are now parts. Well, it seems to me that is what a new "emergent holon" is.

The insight which blossomed in my awareness this morning with respect to Yellow and Turquoise is that Yellow is developing its capacity to deal well with many parts. "Curating" them, if you will, to use a term I got from Marilyn Hamilton, author, consultant and movement-leader of Integral City (.com.)

With enough skill at fostering good working connections among the previous worldviews, among individuals and groups holding them, there is in the Yellow consciousness developing into Turquoise perhaps what we could call a "coalescing" of these into a new emergent Whole of subtle Energies of the planet which is then the focus of attention/work and the arena of development of new capacities at a new scale. Or we might language it as that there is a "zooming out" and seeing the individuals as an energetic Whole when viewed from "further out" (whatever that might mean; don't try to pin me down on it here!) in consciousness.

They turn out to be able to be seen as parts only in retrospect, of course; only when the new Whole is perceived, are the objects of attention, having capacities developed to deal with them, seen to be related in that way. At the time of the warm worldview, they are merely various objects of attention.

I just said "I don't remember hearing anyone characterize the 'warm' phases as focused on 'parts of the next whole.'" It could very well be that indeed Ken Wilber said this, or it was explicit or implicit in Terri O'Fallon's StAGES training I took last June. It has happened before in my life, that I read something, and then months or years later, it pops up as "new." So I might have encountered the seed idea, or in its plant or bud form, or even the blossom itself, previously. I'm open to discovering that.

For now, however, it seems quite logical to regard movement along the Spiral of development of consciousness as not only having the theme of individual or collective, but to further characterize the theme as parts or wholes. So perhaps we could say the times of the "warm" worldviews are times of developing capacities around managing certain parts of life, of experience, of the world, and then part of the natural movement into the next "cool" time is when so much familiarity with and skill with those particular parts, catalyzes a natural coalescing or zooming out, and the pieces of the puzzle are no longer pieces, they are part of a picture which is now seen, now grokked, even if quite implicitly.

The next steps in this exploration would be to try to characterize the "parts" involved in the warm worldviews, and their emergent Whole in the next cool worldview, all the way from Beige to Teal (first in First Tier, last in Third Tier.) That is a task for another day. I suspect it would not be a lengthy task. I'd look first to characterizations of the "scope of caring" of each worldview, for clues.

Whaddaya think? It makes logical sense, right?

And no need to get hung up that a worldview is not a holon; the term "holon" is used imprecisely when heuristic in many contexts these days, I notice, so I am comfortable with playing with it as a framework here. Maybe just "that which transcends and includes previous elements" would serve, but a single word is easier to use in discourse.
Do comment below!

by Rev. Alia Aurami, Ph.D., Head Minister, 
Amplifying Divine Light in All Church
"Amplifying Divine Light in All" is a completely independent church fostering empowerment of people to co-create loving, thriving God-realized lives, and wellbeing for everyone, on a clean, peaceful Earth.
Our main religious purpose and mission is to amplify the Divine Light in everyone. When you read this blogpost, you will agree or disagree with its various points, and find new insights, and then you will know more about what is true for you. Knowing more of your own Truth amplifies your Divine Light. Thus providing/presenting this blogpost is one way for us to accomplish our purpose and mission. 
This blogpost and our providing/presenting it are therefore a central and essential part of our exercise and practice of our religion. 
None of the contents herein are claimed as absolute truth. They represent one possible perspective which might prove useful for you, and they encourage you to explore your own spiritual truths.

All rights reserved under the Common Law. This means please respect our creatorship.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

We-space-Collective Intelligence Groups Vary in Purpose

We-space (Collective Intelligence) Groups 
Vary in Purpose

(Apologies for the wonky paragraph spacing. Blogger simply does not obey paragraphing commands!)

As I look around the landscape of the groups I know involved in higher-consciousness we-space practices, I notice a distinction which could be unfolded as differences in purpose. In this blogpost, I'll begin to explore these, and I hope you join in​ with your experiences and observations!

The four purposes are:
1. Creating/experiencing/exploring
2. Experimenting/refining
3. Using, working with/as
4. Living in/as

I'm sure these are large baskets which could be further differentiated!
In my mind, these four purposes form a spectrum. A group could move through them, in order. Experiencing lays a foundation for experimenting, and experimenting lays a foundation for living as a collective consciousness group.

However, very importantly IMO, each purpose is an end in itself, and a group need not move beyond its current purpose. The members might be quite content to continue with the current purpose, and will, IMO, gain important insights and information which, if shared with others, will make any important contribution to the evolution of humanity's capacity to engage in/use/live as, shared higher-consciousness (by whatever designation we use for that, other terms are possible) -- which ideally will be brought to bear on our shared challenges as a species.
Also, it appears to me that some groups move around among these purposes at various times; the purposes are far from being mutually exclusive.

Examples of each kind of purpose:

1. Creating/Experiencing/Exploring
One example is: Andrew Carter MacDonald's "High Meadow" monthly conference call groups, http://www.soulworkcommons.org/ spun off from George Por's Mindful Together group on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/mindfultogether/ 
The only stated purpose to the groups is to create and experience "the field of shared consciousness." Participants report on what they feel or think in that field, express themselves from the field, and explore to the extent of gaining experience of what being in that field is like. However, there is little interest in trying out new injunctions to see what difference they make, which to me is the hallmark of the 2nd purpose.

Another example might be the Integral Living Room http://www.integrallivingroom.com
series of events. Perhaps the most relevant exploration of the ILR within these distinctions is this one:
My experience in the first ILR, and impressions of the others, is that one primary purpose is allow people to perhaps get their first taste of a collective awareness, and to find out what that's like, and to develop an interest in further learning about it. The event is sort of like "Here's what relating at/in Second Tier is like; let's begin to learn how to live this way more and more often in our lives." And part of that Second Tier relating, is moments or minutes, of a real, coherent field of shared higher-consciousness.

However, the Integral Living Room event designers also (IMO) definitely have an experimental attitude toward various higher we-space injunctions, so their purpose blends into the second one I've distinguished: experimenting and refining.

2. Experimenting/refining
The experimenters/refiners are familiar enough with the experience, and are curious how to "tweak" the field in various ways. They engage in trial and error. They try different instructions, different invocations, different guidelines. They might try varying who is leader, or who is members. They might experiment with varying lengths of time, or varying platforms.

Besides their enjoyment of the experiencing, they are scientists, checking out what variables are important, what changes in what variables have what effects -- not for any ultimate purpose (such as usefulness for particular work) but simply for the joy of discovery, of refinement, of greater richness of knowledge and understanding of this phenomenon.
Often, though, experiments are aimed at such purposes as assessing how to make a group "field" more robust to incoherent inputs (people who don't fit, technological disruptions,  challenging emotions that arise, etc.) Or how to get a group going faster, or with less sophisticated participants, or how to make a group function well in cyberspace, or across asynchronous communications. These are all, IMO, "hot research topics."

I don't currently know of any groups which are devoted solely or primarily to this purpose, but I suspect many of the groups facilitated by Andrew Cohen and his students in previous years, were primarily with this purpose. (Reference Appendix Two of 11 Days at the Edge, by Michael Wombacher)
http://www.amazon.com/Days-Edge-Spiritual-Evolutionary-Enlightenment-ebook/dp/B003YL4KXU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1418885891&sr=8-1&keywords=wombacher+11
3. Using, working with/as

An example of this is the Gaia's Human Hive Integrators (aka Core Team) for the Integral City enterprise http://www.integralcity.com. A shared field is cultivated (and experimented with) for the purpose of making decisions about which projects to engage in, what next steps might be, etc. The method used to create a shared field has been Systemic Constellation Work (as being developed/adapted for work in organizations by Diana Claire Douglas http://www.inspiritworks.com/Pages/default.aspx -- but the group's intention is to operate AS a shared field, even outside of the official delimited times of a constellation.

I am sure there are many examples of this purpose in business and sports. Just for an anecdote, I heard a report on the radio here in Seattle that in the National Football League 2014 National Champs, our own Seattle Seahawks, coaches were working with the players to "think less and trust more" in making decisions of what to do in the moment on the field, and it was clear that "trust more" involved the premise of a shared consciousness. The example was basically, throwing a ball just knowing that a receiver was positioned right for catching it, rather than spending time looking over the turf and seeing where people were and consciously deciding when and where to throw the ball. Act on impulse, and trust, were the injunctions, and the assumption was, in my words, "our shared field of awareness knows what will work best for our purpose of scoring. We must learn to tap into it and then trust it to prompt and guide our behavioral decisions."

I am sure more and more business groups are operating this. I hope you'll share some examples.

Thomas Hubl's various groups all over the world, http://www.thomashuebl.com/en/?lang=en
 which have slightly varying purposes depending on who leads them, seem to me to be examples of those who "use" this way of relating, primarily for the purpose of individual and/or collective "shadow work," for clearing (in his languaging framework) energy blocks. Ultimately, this is intended to pave the way for what I am calling the 4th purpose, living naturally and easily in a shared higher consciousness, and (therefore automatically) using it to meet humanity's challenges.

4. Living as/in/from a shared field of higher consciousness. 
This is for people who have practiced so long, and so well, that they simply embody this kind of shared consciousness. Sort of, living in our natural state of relating. (I explored that definition in this blogpost: http://exploringsecondandthirdtier.blogspot.com/2013/12/we-space-simplicity-beyond-complexity.html)
They have experienced, experimented with, used, this way of being and relating, and it's even beyond "automatic practice." It is simply who they are. (Probably, in my terms, operating as a group in the Third Tier We-space. http://exploringsecondandthirdtier.blogspot.com/2013/11/third-tier-we-spaces-coral-and-teal.html)

The only folks I know whose explicit purpose is this one, are with Patricia Albere's Collective Evolutionary Collective/Mutual Awakening work. http://evolutionarycollective.com/courses/mutual-awakening-ebook-download/
While she facilitates groups with the first purpose listed above, she is also working longterm and indepth with a much smaller group or groups, to cultivate an actual community, ongoingly and constantly operating this way even while separate in space and time.

General Thoughts about these distinctions:

One usefulness of these distinctions is to not assume that every group involved in shared-consciousness explorations has all the purposes, and to not expect any group to have them all, or more than one. And to know which you are about to investigate or get involved with, so your expectations are in line with your probable experiences.

Are the injunctions/guidelines used to establish "the field" in each kind of group different? Almost certainly, but I don't presently have much to say about which is which, or how they differ. Can you say something on that?
What is the relationship of this developmental spectrum of groups to the "stages" of we-spaces I've explored elsewhere (links to several blogposts listed below) and which Andrew Venezia explored in his Masters' Thesis on We-space groups. http://newwaysofhumanbeing.com/2013/10/13/finally-my-thesisfinal-project/

What do you think? Are these distinctions useful? What challenges do they pose to you, and/or what refinements could you offer? Or what additional questions arise for you from this exploration?



by Rev. Alia Aurami, Ph.D., Head Minister, 
Amplifying Divine Light in All Church
"Amplifying Divine Light in All" is a completely independent church fostering empowerment of people to co-create loving, thriving God-realized lives, and wellbeing for everyone, on a clean, peaceful Earth.

Our main religious purpose and mission is to amplify the Divine Light in everyone. When you read this blogpost, you will agree or disagree with its various points, and find new insights, and then you will know more about what is true for you. Knowing more of your own Truth amplifies your Divine Light. Thus providing/presenting this blogpost is one way for us to accomplish our purpose and mission. 

This blogpost and our providing/presenting it are therefore a central and essential part of our exercise and practice of our religion. 

None of the contents herein are claimed as absolute truth. They represent one possible perspective which might prove useful for you, and they encourage you to explore your own spiritual truths.

All rights reserved under the Common Law. This means please respect our creatorship.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Saving the World: Whose Problem? Whose Solution? Having More Skillful Enrollment Conversations


Saving the World: Whose Problem? Whose Solution? Having More Skillful Enrollment Conversations


I've just had a sobering realization, which might be called pessimistic, except that I've now seen something potentially useful, and that could foster optimism. I'll let you decide. One pointer to optimism is that I don't think I am the first person to have this insight/realization. I've just never heard it clearly articulated before. If you can find other articulations, please help change the world by sharing them here!!!!
(As with all my blogs, this one is not meant as a presentation of truth, even "my" truth. It is intended as speculation to serve as a conversation-starter.)

This sharing is aimed at people who are passionate about "changing the world" and who have the broadest view, a view at least global in scope if not larger, of what is happening, what might help, and what could happen that they want to have happen.
The framework I'm going to use for talking about this is the Spiral Dynamics one of "life conditions" which naturally lead people to experience "problems" for which they seek solutions, and by which they are naturally led to not just different actions or behaviors, but eventually, if they don't "crash and burn," to an evolutionary expansion of the capabilities of their consciousness, which we can describe as their 'worldview." A "worldview" is one's felt, experienced, and lived (not usually conceptualized or languaged) answers to the basic questions of life: Who am I? What is reality? What is life about? How am I to live? How am I to relate?
So here's the thing. People whose scope of awareness in those answers is large in terms of time, space, and objects/creatures included, see huge global-scope problems such as climate change, depletion of earth's resources on which our lives depend, etc. AND those people see how the problems they see, are going to impact EVERYONE. So they go about proposing solutions, both action/behavior and "how we must change our consciousness in order to survive as a species on earth." (My most current instance of this is Leading from the Emerging Future -- From Ego-System to Eco-System Economies: Applying Theory U to Transforming Business, Society, and Self, by Otto Scharmer and Katrin Kaufer.)
What rocked me back this morning is the realization that so many of the world-changer-authors I read, especially the Integrally-informed authors, (me among them, often) are addressing ears of the people they perceive as causing the problem, ears which cannot hear that description of the problem. Authors like this are also proposing problem-solutions their problem-causers can't do.

So many of these authors, and I so far see Scharmer and Kaufer as among them, are perceiving/describing/analyzing certain "life conditions" from within their own worldview and answering the evolutionary imperative to move to THEIR OWN NEXT STAGE OF DEVELOPMENT OF CONSCIOUSNESS, and putting forth that move as "the solution" which is needed by everyone, and should be/must be engaged in by everyone, in order for us as a species to survive.
For example, it appears to me, in Spiral Dynamics language, that Scharmer and Kaufer attribute the global-life-threatening problems they describe (pp. 1-13) to (unhealthy) Orange-stage "me with no regard for you" "ego-centric thinking." And the move they propose is a move to Yellow "seeing the whole system and care for all the parts" "eco-system" thinking. Well, that probably won't work, without the ability to see and care deeply for others, which comes with living through the Green stage.

Not only that, but I haven't yet (as of p. 29, so that might change) seen Scharmer and Kaufer, or others (exception noted below) asking: "OK, I see this problem from within my worldview. How might the same problem be seen, if indeed it shows up at all, from earlier worldviews?" For example, imagine you ask a lot of people "What is the biggest problem you face in your life, what's causing it, and what is the solution you see; what have you tried and what are you thinking of trying, for solutions?"
For a lot of people, the biggest problem in their existence is that their drinking water is making them sick, but they believe they can't move. What they want, is someone to solve this problem for them. For a lot of people, the biggest problem in their existence is the infidels who pollute the world with their ideas, and the only imaginable solution, is to kill them all. For others, the biggest problem they experience is there is not enough love in the world, and their only imaginable solution is to force or persuade everyone to engage in their idea of loving behavior.
Not only are those differing problems, not all of them are among subjectively-perceived "life conditions" which begin to motivate people to go beyond new tactics and new strategies, and shift ever so gradually, piece by piece, into the next natural scope of worldview/way of being available to humans.

So my sobering realization is that in the framework of Spiral Dynamics, not everyone sees what to one is a "given circumstance" affecting everyone, in the same way. AND, unfortunately, the calls to greater awareness are not addressing that not only is not everyone is seeing the same problem, but also not everyone is experiencing the same life conditions. Thus, the calls for change of consciousness from one stage to another, fall on deaf ears.

For example, climate change. Some people see it on the global scale, and can see present and potential impacts on food supply, water supply, weather-related disasters, potential destruction of large cities, etc. If, like Scharmer, they attribute the problem to the cause of "ego-centric consciousness," and their proposed solution is a call to "world-centric consciousness," there is too big a stage-gap. The ego-centric people supposedly causing the problem, cannot answer the call to jump to worldcentric consciousness. One of the realities of maturation, thus of Spiral Dynamics' view of the evolution of consciousness, is that one cannot skip stages. More precisely, trying to skip a stage generates an unhealthy resulting consciousness which itself will be the source of problems.
Now, some of the people with world-centric consciousness do realize that what THEY perceive as problems, might or might not manifest in some way among the most subjectively pressing problematical "life conditions" experienced by people at earlier stages. Example: Gail Hochachka and her international development team [as described in Dustin DiPerna and H.B. Augustine, eds. The Coming Waves) sat down with villagers to discover how they might be directly experiencing a life-challenge, which to Gail's team was "climate change." To the villagers, it was that an old river had dried up, creating a hardship for them. The "solution" co-created was not for the villages to shift from tribal-scope to global-scope consciousness; the solution was to expand slightly in scope of consciousness in order to figure out some actions which would give themselves better access to water.
There's another eddy in this stream of insight about problems, change, and solutions. We also know from Spiral Dynamics that people faced with a problem will first try trial-and-error behaviors, more of the known ways, to solve it. (Single-loop learning, in some frameworks of discourse.) If that doesn't work, they might step back, zoom out in perspective, reflect a bit, and try a different strategy, come at it from a different angle. (Double-loop learning.) Both of those can be comfortably engaged in within their worldview and do not reflect their awareness of a "life condition" which would lead to questioning the worldview itself, to a deep impulse to begin to expand, to look for new answers to life's questions, to be willing to shift who they are being, in order to solve (or dissolve) the problem. (Triple-loop learning.)
So unfortunately, if we think all our wonderful insightful "Integrally-informed" books and articles about THE nature of THE problem, and THE nature of THE solution, are going to make a difference on a massive scale, we'll be disappointed. 

Please note, this is important: I am not ignoring The Butterfly Effect; I grant that to make changes on a "massive scale," we do not need to address everyone, enroll everyone, change everyone. The whole point of this blogpost is to offer some perspectives that might help us more intelligently target our communications for greatest potential impact, effectiveness, leverage in making "massive" changes.

The first reason we'll be disappointed is because we are naming/describing "the problem" as we see it from our zoomed-out perspective, not naming/describing "the problem" as perceived by most of humanity.

Second, we are also often proposing a solution which is perhaps more ours, not necessarily theirs: move to greater world-centric awareness and shift your way of BEING, your identity and thus your whole consciousness into that particular scope/stage.

Third, we often aren't taking into account that they might need to exhaust all the potential solutions available within their worldview to the problems they perceive within their worldview. IOW, even if they can perceive their own experience of the "problem" we experience in our way, this might not be a "life condition motivating evolution of consciousness" for them even though our perception is that profoundly growthful, for us.

Fourth, we are often not seeming to take into account that the worldview we propose as a 'solution' is OUR next step, but not necessarily the next natural evolutionary step for the people whose consciousness-level we perceive as 'causing' the problems we perceive. Also, even if they tried what we propose, which they have no incentive to do, they would be trying to "skip a stage,"  (or two or thee) resulting in suffering for themselves and others.
So here's what I am going to be doing henceforth in my own world-changing-motivated communications, based on these musings, and what you might do too.

If I see a problem (or a potential -- this blog would be too long if I explored that angle,) I would ask myself what worldview would perceive it in the same way I do.

I would ask myself whether to me this is just a problem, or whether it feels like a limitation of my worldview which I have just bumped up against, and which is therefore one of my own perceived "life conditions" fostering my own willingness to grow my worldview.

As part of that inquiry, I would ask myself which kind of response I am feeling motivated to engage in with respect to the problem. (Spiral Dynamics names stages: alpha, beta, gamma, etc. and others describe the different loops of learning; different frameworks can be used.)
If I am seeking to enroll others in engaging toward some kind of solution, I would ask myself

  • WHO, WHICH OTHERS, I am wanting to communicate with, and
  • what stage of consciousness they are in, and thus
  • whether they can perceive the problem at all, whether they can perceive it as I do, how they might be perceiving it, and 
  • whether the problem as they perceive it is actually among their (what we might call) currently psycho-active "life conditions," and
  • what level/stage of kind of response to the problem they perceive, they are ready for (single, double, or triple-loop learning.)
I would shape my communications to specific others, based on my perceived answers to those questions about them.
Make sense? All the above is my invitation to you, for a conversation. What do you have to say, reflect, suggest, expand, etc.? Am I mis-perceiving something, mis-characterizing, oversimplifying, etc?


Afterthoughts:


It might sound above as if I'm regarding individual people as being entirely in one stage or another, and therefore unable to have parts of themselves one or even two stages higher than their "center of gravity" stage; in truth, I'm aware of that "mosaic effect," and it's "thinking" not "people" which form the object of my discourse above. A deeper conversation on this topic would take that complexity into account. This is a blogpost, not a book.

I note this blogpost fell out from a "perfect confluence" of recent participation in reading the two books noted above, listening to MetaIntegral's just-concluded four-part minicourse on Vital Skills for Thriving in a Wild, Complex World (where Enrollment conversations were discussed,) [email me divinelightchurch at gmail dot com for shareable copies of the audios, I can't find good links right now] and my ongoing conversations/collaborations with world-class world-changers George Por (http://blogofcollectiveintelligence.com/)and Marilyn Hamilton (http://integralcity.com).


If you'd like to explore my own deeper dive into the concepts of the loops of learning, it's here: http://organizationalintelligences.blogspot.com/p/learning-more-intelligently-and.html

I do align with the favorite quote from Einstein among Integrally-interested folks, that a problem cannot be solved from the same level of thinking which created it. Therefore, I am not arguing against analyses of problems perceived, say from within the Integral worldview as affecting everyone, and having those analyses pinpoint the "level of thinking which created the problem" as a much earlier stage of consciousness development. That seems eminently realistic. 


What I am seeking to point out is that the "solutions" proposed FROM a stage two or three stages later than the "cause"-stage, won't get much traction if they directly attempt to move those people into the later-stage thinking directly, for all the reasons described above. Solutions proposed FROM wider-scope worldviews have to be aimed at particular people in ways which are skillfully shaped to motivate and foster the desired internal and external changes, and that could be quite complex, design-wise.


by Rev. Alia Aurami, Ph.D., Head Minister, 
Amplifying Divine Light in All Church
"Amplifying Divine Light in All" is a completely independent church fostering empowerment of people to co-create loving, thriving God-realized lives, and wellbeing for everyone, on a clean, peaceful Earth.
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