Integral Ethnocentrism - Why is everyone white, male, American?


Thanks for the well considered and broad posting. Lovely sharing on your Transformative relationship with Jesus!

Sounds like you’re doing quite a lot to create a “big tent”.

I’m still a bit hung up on the integral “assessment of those people” who consistently show up as “lower on the development scale” vs the integral community’s self assessment which seems to be “we’re so advanced only these people can peddle with us”.

Carry on, It’s all good!


@corey-devos showed his “Christian Tribe” membership credentials and for some reason any concern about diversity no longer seems relevant.


I mean, this is just how development works. I understand that the notion of vertical development makes some people uncomfortable though.

You have to grow through concrete-operational cognition before you make it to formal-operational cognition. And you have to grow through form-op in order to make it to vision logic. You can’t skip stages.

You have to learn arithmetic before you can learn algebra. And you need to know algebra before you can learn calculus. You can’t skip stages.

Similarly, you have to grow through orange before you make it to green. And then you need to grow through green in order to make it to integral. You can’t skip stages.

And “more developed” doesn’t mean “superior”, unless we are talking about specific tasks. A 12th grader is more developed than a 4th grader. Does that make an 18 year old “superior” to a 10 year old? Of course not. Just more equipped to handle a greater degree of complexity. We don’t expect fourth graders to do calculus — it is literally over their heads. In fact, it would be cruel to put them in that position in the first place. The goal, as always, is exactly as Ken states:

“At any point in history, the political ideal is to let each stage be itself, and govern from the highest reasonably available at any given time.”

Glad you liked the resources!


I’m brown and Indian. And it’s transcend and include. Not be better and exclude


Very long answer Corey… If say an Integralist were to get caught up in an ego/shadows driven view of themselves and the world in which they live, what might that viewpoint look like?
This is where my question regarding feedback mechanisms in Integral Theory. Otherwise an always linear progression from the somewhat sacred origin texts.


Welcome aboard Anshu!


Are you asking if it’s possible for people to overassess their own development? Yes, of course, we see it all the time. Also folks who underestimate their development. In fact, I’ll go much farther — it is pretty much impossible to assess your own development, because we cannot clearly see our own zone 2 structures. What’s more, our development occurs over multiple different lines of intelligence, and they don’t all move at the same rate.

The best you can do, really, apart from taking expensive tests to see where you might be and where your challenges might lie, is to surround yourself with a “community of the adequate” and be willing to allow their support and critical feedback to guide your ongoing growth and awakening.

The fact that these shadows and misperceptions exist, doesn’t mean the stage itself doesn’t, or that it isn’t the result of a sequential growth hierarchy. Which is why, if a person has not grown through the green stage first, there’s no way to “be integral”.


Sort of but not quite. I’m interested in how Integralism reassesses itself, iteratively modifies/fine tunes itself, or perhaps rewrites itself.

Of if the foundational texts are spot on, then it’s just down to personal and collective implementation.

If I were to contrast common hierarchies, different from Integral Theory,

  • Democracies receive feedback from the Citizenry
  • Churches monitor participation, attendance, donations
  • Political parties monitor voting habits, donations
  • Businesses monitor their business
  • Governments some might argue, once they have control they ignore inputs - LOL

I think Robb did post something along the lines of “What does Integral need now”. Perhaps that was a feedback mechanism. Did this go any where?


Ah, well then we have several feedback mechanisms, yes.

First, Integral Life is primarily a business, and one that we’ve kept running for almost 20 years. So there’s an entire range of feedback mechanisms associated with that.

Second, we have Ken Wilber himself, who again is the final authority on his own theory. And that theory has evolved and mutated many times throughout his career, based on the feedback from his trusted peers (his community of the adequate).

Then we have something like the JITP, which had its own editorial and theoretical mechanisms that helped generate more fidelity, more accuracy, and wider application. We are now in the process of rebooting those mechanisms for a new wave of JITP contributions. More on that as it emerges.

And then we have many kinds of cultural feedback mechanisms, both within the integral subculture itself, as well as between the integral subculture and other metatheory subcultures that have been emerging in our adjacency, such as metamodernism.

Squint your eyes a little, and it looks like we have these mechanisms in all four quadrants. All of these enfoldment mechanisms help enrich and unpack the integral project as we know it, and continue to push it forward.


What I see here, @FermentedAgave - is that you see official organizations with traditional hierarchies as more or less the only “legit” way to influence, guide, implement and so on.

I’ve noticed this many times in your posts that you seem to need to see an official Orange organizational structure as the agent of change, reform, improvement and so on. The list you gave is just another example of what I’ve observed before. Churches as Organizations, Political Organizations, Businesses, and Governments are all very much Orange. “Democracies” might hint at a bit of Green in your perspective, but was only 1 out of 5 things you listed as examples.

It’s going to be very difficult for Corey to explain to you how he gets feedback in a 2nd Tier Community if all you are willing to recognize are Orange and a little Green.

We are well into 20 years of “Businesses” and “Organizations” learning and implementing all kinds and all forms of self sustaining feedback mechanisms (I use quotes because many communities do not use neither the business model nor a strict organizational model). A term that sticks out in my mind from around 2002 when I was studying these kinds of things is the “Learning Organization” - where the organization is built around feedback mechanisms so as to constantly evolve from it’s very basis / foundation upwards. Now 20 years later it’s not even necessary to have an official organizational structure. With various kinds of media, communities form and evolve with nothing more than a core of people implementing and practicing “Integral” concepts (whether they know about Ken Wilbur or not).

If you are “stuck” in an Orange understanding of Organizations, most of Corey’s explanations about the Integral Life Community will just fly right by you. This is even more the case if you have no intention of learning from him. He might as well be talking into the wind.



Corey explained sincerely and very comprehensively. I got what I got, right? Lol

I’ve been in consumer, participatory, advisory and leadership rolls in tight hierarchical organizations as well as highly distributed “messy” organizations. Are “Orange Hierarchies” the only way to go? Obviously not. When these Orange hierarchies work well, they might be the most efficient.

What would be examples of Green or Teal organizations that you think work well?

I recently was volunteered to lead our neighborhood association. It’s all volunteer, no money, no HOA, just “good of the ‘hood and havin’ fun”. Would this be an Orange organization or Orange Unorganization? LOL

Based on the original post, what would that success look like for Integral Life? Would there be perhaps identifiable racial, political, socioeconomic communities within Integralism? And perhaps this exists outside of Integral Life, in the other Integralish groups. Or perhaps assessing “key metrics” or even having this discussion is Orange in and of itself.

What would the Green or Teal view look like?

You know @raybennett I’m glad I give you an anvil upon which to pound your ideals.



Question for you.
I assume our Orange hierarchies are the most mature since we’ve had them for the longest.
What hierarchies would we most quickly be able to shift to Green?
Border control, policing seem to be in rapid Flux. What might Green structures look like? Or Teal?


What is the goal of the organization or group? Efficiency is only an Orange goal. A Green organization might be completely unconcerned with efficiency. I’d actually venture to say that people meeting for a Green purpose may have no desire for efficiency. When you go to your drumming circle, is it all about being as efficient as possible and getting all the drumming in less than an hour? If it’s the kind of drumming that induces an altered state, do you have timers posted to tell drummers they are behind schedule? Other Green organizations would meet for equally inefficient purposes.

Funny you mention HOA’s - the worst possible organization ever made on the planet. A bunch of people who are completely unqualified for the job trying to create rules and act out their petty vendettas and dramas through the monthly board meetings. That’s not even mentioning the corruption and graft that is possible with such an organization - giving family and buddies contracts that aren’t really needed and not supervising it to make sure they completed all the contractual obligations. Then there’s always the board of geniuses who always go with the lowest bid. (Haha I was the maintenance manager of a high rise condominium for a few years, lol)
The last two properties I purchased I specifically chose weak HOA’s that minded their own business and would have a minimal impact on me.
When you describe your neighborhood association with no actual formal HOA, I’d call that probably not Orange. Like neighborhood watch. Just people trying to do the right thing and minimal Orange. “Watch out for each other” - something villages didn’t need to be told to do throughout history, but for some reason we forgot it in our reliance on Orange government and corporations to meet all our needs.

There isn’t a cookie cutter “best” model. You always have to go back to what you are trying to accomplish. So the question:

Who’s to say it isn’t successful at what it’s goal is? If you want a screwdriver to be a hammer, it’s not that the screwdriver isn’t a good tool and needs to be improved - you need to make a hammer, not analyze a screwdriver as a n inadequate tool.
Corey has outlined his intent for this Integral Life Community. It meets the criteria of success within those goals.
There are dozens or even hundreds or thousands even tens of thousands of integral communities, but I’d say the more they focus on racial, political, socioeconomic, the less integral they would tend to be. Racial identity excludes, political identity divides, socioeconomic identity is exclusive. I don’t see any of these as being vehicles for integralism. Although it could be that a “let’s get rich” socioeconomic group could be inclusive to all people, they would have to not focus on exclusively money to be integral, IMO.

An example of an integral community would be any that focuses on two or more of waking up, growing up and cleaning up. Of course they’d have to show up or nothing gets done, lol. This ILC community seems to be more description oriented. They like to describe and figure things out. If you want a group that takes action on issues, they are out there somewhere but again beware of the inherently nonintegral nature of politics. Honestly, I don’t know who half of my various social groups voted for. I the majority assumes everyone voted for Biden, but I know that’s not the case. But knowing that, I don’t worry about it or try to figure out who. At the integral level, there has to be some degree of TRUST that the person is doing their best to figure things out. I’ll still confront mainstream messaging (aka duckspeak) on either extreme of the spectrum, but I also understand they are doing their best to make sense of a complex world.

Why? Doesn’t make sense to me. I’d need someone to explain why this would be useful except at a postmodern temporary developmental space. I’m a member of an organization that does this and I see the usefulness for this from a postmodern lens, but at the same time it limits that organization to going beyond postmodern.
In my opinion at Teal you decide who your family / community / nation is completely irrespective of genetic makeup.


Is even asking “what are we trying to accomplish” Orange? It’s a conundrum. Lol.

I would say your assessment of HOAs is extremely Orange - they’re inefficient, have little purpose and are staffed with unqualified bickering idiots. That seems an Orange assessment as well since you’re looking at efficiency or goal orientation as a top metric.

On what a Teal Org might look like.
Would it be a self organizing self regulating self motivating self goal setting loose group of people?

I’m struggling to “not be Orange” which is also Orange by definition. Lol


I don’t think asking what you are trying to accomplish is necessarily Orange.

Let’s look at why people might form groups. Let’s say we want to form a weed smoking group. Are we going to type up an agenda, record who is in attendance and take minutes? No its just whoever happens to be around and interested and somehow these groups form.
Or take romance and courting. The web has really bungled this one - where you have to fill out a 50 page questionnaire only to get 100% matches with people you aren’t interested in at all. The pre internet form of nonmatching seems to me superior.

God - “just sit in the forest alone until you figure it out” to me seems superior to all the organized worship I’ve ever attended. Or if you don’t figure it out, at least equal because neither have most the people in church. If they had it figured out they would “graduate” and no longer have to repeat the same lessons.
Fitness and exercise- another thing that has got overcomplicated and less fun the more it is organized.

And so on and so on. Trying to organize everything has ruined so many things it’s crazy.


Actually that’s going to be my go-to church joke.
“Wow you still going to church? I graduated 30 years ago. I guess I’m just a fast learner”


So anarchy might be the highest altitude organization. Just hope some remembers to bring rolling papers… Lol


How do you define anarchy here?
Is some form of government or organization required in every single aspect of everyone’s lives?
Do you need an organization to control how you live, have fun, and express live to others?


Somebody has to bring the papers and I sure hope someone grabs some munchies. Next thing you know, Jimmy is coordinating with Suzy who talked with Bill and viola we have a self organizing party. Beer. Don’t forget the beer. And ice.