Russia Is Catalyzing the Transformation Age



If you tell me that throughout the 21st century we will continue to have a set of nations armed with nuclear weapons, I will tell you there’s a 99% chance that we end up in a nuclear conflict eventually. Human psychology is belligerent. And as far back as Plato’s warning in the Republic, we understand it is inevitable that some fraction of political bodies evolve towards authoritarian regimes. Ergo, it can’t be at all surprising that we face the situation we do today, where a nuclear (if not economic or cultural) superpower is leveraging its nukes to act in the vein of a 19th century imperialist. Beyond the tragic loss of life in the war proper, the strategic problem this creates for the world order is immense: what should the world do when 21st century nuclear superpowers, especially those governed by non-accountable and non-checkable autocrats, begin to violate the prevailing international order and attempt to conquer sovereign foreign nations? Today it’s Russia, tomorrow it could be North Korea or China; this is not a problem that goes away regardless of what happens in the next few months. Rather it is better understood as an emergent geopolitical life condition of the late Information Age, what integralists call the Green structure of evolution. It pairs Information Age technology, like nuclear weapons, with challenges to Information Age world order legitimacy (like the United Nations), with Age of Empire forms of leadership, conquest and claimed legitimacy. Putin tries to cover his ambition under a critique of the West—and a thorough and substantive critique there surely is—but it doesn’t change the fact there is no legitimate justification using contemporary moral calculus to invade a peaceful sovereign neighbor.

Three Scenarios Ahead
So far this horrific struggle has played out as I’ve expected. I thought there was a very good chance Putin would invade, that he might face more military challenges than people predicted, that the global alliance would rapidly cohere, and that the entire decision would come to look like a massive strategic mistake. Since the beginning, it’s been clear there were only a few possible outcomes, two of which are either a coup or a nuclear mushroom cloud. The pain of international financial sanctions will so destroy the Russian economy that Russian elites, perhaps even the Russian “street” (no matter that they are fairly manipulated by Kremlin propaganda), might end up taking Putin out of power. If that happens, it will open up an historic opportunity to invite Russia into the league of liberalizing nations, and a full-scale Marshall Plan to help it become a modern, sophisticated nation will be warranted. In this scenario, ironically enough, Putin inadvertently succeeds in ending NATO, but not for the reason he hoped. Incidentally, the Russian people are proud, majestic and brilliant, so I have long wondered what Russia would be today if a Russian version of Lee Kwan Yew had been empowered in the early 1990s; after 30 years it might be one of the most powerful, free and agile nations in the world today.

On the other hand, if Putin is able to rally the Russian street through propaganda, keep elites in check, and remain in power through his formidable Praetorian guard and state security apparatus, do we end up in an escalatory standoff that ends in a mushroom cloud—probably tactical, or God forbid between superpowers? The US and its NATO allies are wise to keep themselves out of a military engagement in Ukraine. I don’t believe reports that Putin is irrational or deranged, I think he’s as coldly calculating as ever, but I do not for one moment doubt what his desperate and aggrieved resolve might prompt him to do were the alliance to engage Russia militarily.

So short of a coup or a mushroom cloud, the third outcome seems most probable, which is Ukraine falls and becomes temporarily captive to Russia, becoming a national, larger, and previously-sovereign version of what Russia did with Crimea. The Russian military can likely succeed in its initial conquest but fail perpetually to hold its territory in the face of a vicious insurgency, one that will continue to galvanize global public opinion against Russia, keeping it stuck as a total pariah in the community of nations. Here, we end up in something far worse than a Cold War standoff. Putin is able to hold onto power, but Russia itself slouches ever more towards a completely failed state, ostracized on every level (at least North Korea enjoys the benefit of very few people paying attention to it). In this scenario—in which Russia increasingly degrades toward a failed state, finding itself with skyrocketing inflation and wracked by an economic depression—a whole other analysis is warranted about the misbehavior that Putin engages in to try to get the country back on track, none of it good. But let’s space our disasters and leave that for another day.



There is a natural observation biologist make where a species grows in one of two ways.
When resources are limited, the population grows slowly and achieves equilibrium.
When the population grows with apparent unlimited resources, the growth is exponential.

Humanity is not on the path toward equilibrium, but instead is on the path of exponential growth. This means that Humanity is on the trajectory to experience an exponential decline in population - just as throughout human history. With a population of 7 to 8 billion, this means a population adjustment will be in the Billions. We have already exceeded the natural capacity of the planet and our economic systems and we are seeing the cracks start to appear. Interestingly enough, the factors that usually limit exponential population growth are also starting to become very clear: Disease, Food Scarcity and Predation (War for humans).

This cake is already baked. The Four Horsemen are mounted in their saddles.
Perhaps, just perhaps - if humanity was unified we might be able to overcome disease and hunger in a kind of Star Trek like utopia Global Federation. But I don’t see any signs of that.

Maybe Plato was right, and we should have gone with the Philosopher King model. But as it stands right now, only a small sector is expanding beyond Green into 2nd Tier - but they are also the most vulnerable and most likely to die off first, lol.
There seems to be a bit of Pollyanna left over from Green in hoping contrary to evidence that humaity will “pull together” somehow.


It’s it’s one thing to be behind the Ukrainian people. But are people really behind the Ukrainian government? This article seems so naive to the forces that lead to this crisis. And yes Putin crossed a line he shouldn’t have. Do more research before such a grand narrative as this can morally be accurate over time. This is about the future of humanity and Putin is a Russian Orthodox Zealot. In his eyes he has the only humans left to manifest a Christian collective. And Nukes are on the table in that game. In his eyes nukes insure a graceful end to a painful borg future. It’s him verses the globalist. Most dangerous moment in human history. Putin should be removed. But doesn’t solve anything. What about those globalists. Never entertained by Robb. Making him more like a artist( which I like, the struggle, the attempts at inclusivity) than a accurate expression of the global dynamic. Robb makes good art for Klaus Schwab here. Same basic message. Made more entertaining here:


Such a great post, Robb. Thank you for your clarity and insights.


Hi Bria, the article is not diagnosing what’s behind the invasion with respect to the specific Ukrainian-Russian history, forces, and triggering events, though that’s useful to understand and widely available. However, it’s irrelevant to the thesis of this essay, which regards Putin’s meta-game and how that might play out.

And if you’d like to understand my views on the “globalists”, I wrote extensively about that exact term in my essay The Great Divide, and there are also many resources at the bottom of this current piece that will help you better understand my view of the multi-century macrosociology that has culminated in this moment.

Take care, Robb


Hi Ray, there are many reasons to be more optimistic than that, including the likelihood that the economy will increasingly interiorize, circularize and move toward full pricing in such a way that the current per capita carrying cost declines, as well as the flattening of the population growth curve by mid-century. I’ve said elsewhere that I think it’s unethical to be pessimistic because of how it deprives our children of the maximal space for their creative reply to challenging conditions, but by no means am I anything other than a realist: if the cake is baked, so be it, it doesn’t change a thing about this moment: love everyone, worship every moment, do good work, and bring joy into the world while we’re here.

Take care,



Thanks, I will review the Great Divide article. I apologize for my bad faith jabs at you from past. Working on a good faith focus. But come on man , this was my post in 8/15 on Integral Life. I/We Humanity needs you to step it up. Like a blockchain forum/debate knowledge base platform.

I made this post on Integral Life on 8/2015. Figuring it’s
prediction season. I’m reviewing. How am I doing?
"Current Geopolitical dynamics and Evolutions arrow”
Hi Folks, Its been awhile. I feel the need to update to share a current dynamic, showing tremendous ability to transition and transform structures in society.
My last post was on my predictions of the butterfly effects
from the banking crisis in Cyprus. Thought I should start with
the Greek crisis. But feel the change that has started to
happen in Geopolitics need to be the focus. US treasury bonds , petrodollar, and the carry trade. Sense these are at the core of much of USA’s foreign policy.
Many in the “It needs to collapse for us to have a better
society” crowd think the dollar needs to collapse. This shows the mistake of confusing the price of something with the health and function of the market itself. The US petrodollar, has needed the active protection of the military complex to enable and sustain its international reserve status. For the US to sustain the US bond market, trade needs to be denominated in dollars. The US has been at constant open war from 2001, to conserve the current international reserve currency. Cyprus was a economic attack on Russia from the US. Ukraine too,Libya, Iraq, Syria( Iran). The BRICS are creating a new
international markets for trade that does not use the dollar. There are 117 counties that have been and are signed on. And the US is starting wars to stop the exchange of US bonds, out of reserves and into another asset. The dollar price has been going up and will continue to as second and third world countries get out of there local currency an into a safe haven. Same with US companies. Hoarding cash. We have very low capital investment. We have all the QE’s to blame for that. And now the dollar has begun to loose its market of exchange at the same time the price goes up. The FED has been doing unsertilized monetization of US bonds. It is in a huge bubble making sure interest rates CAN NEVER BE RAISED due to the huge mountain of risk in the derivatives market. So the old alliances in Benton Woods I and Il are being undone and new ones made. Saudi Arabia has become independent and is trading out of the petrodollar. So the bond market collapse has already started. What this means is a RESET of theinternational currency markets.

And during this tormiol something has shown itself to be a little odd. Bitcoin is being accepted as currency by courts. What everyone needs to know about bitcoin is that the currency-itself is not as significant as the PROTOCOL used to make it.
This leads most to miss the opportunity the protocol holds, and maybe not so much the currency. Many big banks approve with concerns. They should be very much against it. Other than the great potential for them creating services from the protocol. Basically the protocol allows for freedom of CONTRACT without centralization. Effecting banking, insurance, risk
mitigation, etc. And the adoption of this type of system is also seen as inevitable from these institutions. The companies have seen as they use computers to handle transactions, that the pattern was showing up in there own systems. Where they create a language to handle all the risk and counter risk in there systems. Basically services were getting automated and thus less profitable for the bank, the search for ever newer services was drying up unless new system allowed them to bypass national regulations. So as the advent of bitcoin
happened the natural response is NO00000, but secretly
there eyes are popping out at all the new services they can profit from. So do not look at bitcoin acceptance in the courts as a good sign for the currency. They want to gain the rights of the protocol and crash the currency.
We have a opportunity to as the petrodollars market shrinks that people can demand the right to currency freedom. Have your account denominated in what ever you want.
We would have two dollars. One domestic that will loose 60% and a international dollar that is exchanged on a trade value bases. Or we can use digital forms of currency as things transition. Or open a foreign account.
It is inevitable that we gain freedom of currency. With NFC
terminals it would make transactions quick, payment is given and received in whatever currency the two parties want, and neither even knows what the other pays in. This is a dramatically different economic system that is coming. And the breakdown phase will be forced on the US, from the BRICS. As the US threatens the world with WWII. Germany is the key that turns to the East that signals the end of the USA empire.
This shows the Eros up arrow is happening even in society. No need for a huge collapse. Just a crisis that leads to a new way of doing it. Greater freedom and goodness. Transmuting a
pathology into a service for all. Satan is about to get his ass fucked to create the next civilization.

As far as the markets are concerned the global rest is currently taking place. As far as public perception is concerned the MSM will be used to make it be some kind of hacker crisis war with China and Russia with new drawing rights made at the World bank/ IMF that keeps the game going by adding a new level. Integrating the West to create austerity, while business was always the environment setter. Allow for greater contract
building (BRICS) more business ( win/win) or get a control by decree from a body that can only react. The sides have been made by the USA. And in so doing is fighting to keep a system afloat even though its destined to fail mathmatically and

So don’t pic Hillary. Shes a huge war monger. Trump is a
cultural disaster but is the only one with the skills to be honest about business. We need this to turn Russia and China from the enemy into business partners. Realizing that they hold the keys to the real economy as the west holds the financial industry that tries to make money out of money, a phony immoral economy. And not that Russia and China are clean. Their a mess. But at least know that success is economic in nature and not owning a market that real trade happens on.Taking a cut on each transaction and debasing the currency used. We are at the point that other countries are sick of it and have been developing an aternative system. Thats whats coming on line, and western central banks do not know what to do. We are entering a period of mass confusion from hacker wars, and full blown economic war, which has already started against Russia. Germany holds the key. And the environment is determining that Germany will have to side with the BRICS. The exact opposite of what the german politic has been doing.
Business wins, no matter what. I thought this was our moto. “Its the ecomony stupid!” So after all we have been through, some how some of you folks are going to pic Hillary? Thats like you looking at those conservatives who picked Bush with utter contempt. And now the progressives will not just do it once (Obama) but again in Hillary. When will you see Trump (I hate him just so you know) is better than any other option by far. Just for the non allegence he has. It has become that bad. That Trump needs to win so WWIII does not happen. Hillary goes through, Isreal and ISIS will go after IRAN and both Russia and China will not stand bye. They will just shut us down. And the Eastern elites will go a kill the Western elites and start a new global bank. And its all about mutual benifit and not about
control over and removing natural soverienty. For god sakes we are about to enter the automation age. What jobs are left?

Therapy, preist, doctor, teacher, facilitator. Any meanial job is gone. Do we just kill off the non workers? The elite have been trying to figure this out for awhile. Or have a new between
consumerables and assets, private and public,
copyrights/patents and time, automated law and positional law, corporate personhood and REAL people. Cyprus, Greece, the list will grow, and the austerity wil expand. For what. So some bank (thats not a person) can keep its digits as people starve?
Im rambaling
Wish I can Integralize it. But clearly we are just begining to see that most of what we see as modern structures in the LR are not actually, just some functional fit resemblance. Most
systems out there are RED, mascarading as orange and green,
when they are magic/power at the core using a
traditional/modern hybrid at its service with tourquoise
intellect. Enjoy"


All those words, sentences, paragraphs, and I didn’t see a single typo–that is remarkable!

I’ve been following this nuanced situation pretty closely, so found it easy to follow Robb’s thoughts and think it also remarkable his incorporation of an integral analysis, AND, his placing emphasis on “going forward” in terms of the nuclear weapons threat in the world that will continue after the Ukrainian crisis, AND, for proposing ideas for how to address this threat in terms of the creation of a “distributed governance mechanism,” the abolition of nukes, a UN defensive-peacekeeping force, and possible “trans-statal reserve currency.” For those who have listened to some of Ken and Corey’s conversations around global issues, the idea of a council or commission-with-teeth as a ‘global regulator’ (to address such things as environmental effects of multi-national corporations, for example) has been frequently mentioned, and I find Robb’s ideas consistent with this. The world is just too interconnected in too many ways to ignore this need, and now we have increasing activity in space that is also going to require global agreements/monitoring/regulation.

While not holding my breath, I am still somewhat wondering about the possibility of a (belated) coup, given the anti-war protests in Russia (6500 people arrested in the first five days after the invasion), the reports of low-morale among Russian troops on the ground, the somewhat quiet but audible anti- statements by a number of Russian businesses, the $1 million reward offered to anyone who “takes down” Putin.

On a personal note, these events have really driven home for me the “price of democracy, the cost of freedom.” We commonly hear how freedom requires sacrifices; Ukraine I think punctuates the magnitude of those sacrifices. It in fact, in the context of there being so few options for NATO given the nuclear threat, seems almost like a ‘sacrificial lamb,’ all the more so because Zelenskiy, has not escaped to a ‘safe place’ but has stayed with the people. This may change for one reason or another; he may in fact eventually leave to form a government in exile or for some other reason, but so far, he appears to be an atypical and sympathetic leader. And all the more so thinking of those one million (to date) refugees.

After days of following the events leading up to and the invasion itself, I found myself feeling what I’ve alternately called “horrow” and “sorror,” a combination of horror and sorrow, and in a temporary state of an odd inner silence that reminded me of the mutism some people experience during acute/chronic traumatic pain. Not that I am traumatized, (I relate to “hurts more, but bothers you less”) but I seemed to have touched a place in my soul where humanity’s horror and sorrow at its own cruelty (and low levels of development) live, and the horror that the world has “little choice but to stand by and watch a dictator murder innocents,” a phrase used by journalist Tom Nichols in a piece in The Atlantic, “Stay Calm” Starting with paragraph 9 in the article, Nichols reminds us of our “litany of shame,” those other times in recent history we’ve stood by or had to stand by and watch such horrors. If any further reason is needed for “animating the global network with real power” as Robb says, I don’t know what it is.

On a happier note, that US intelligence seemed to perform rather well in predicting the invasion, and that the Biden administration shared pertinent information with the public, are real cause for pride, I think. And that the US and allies have come together in unity has been something of a real orgasmic moment; let’s hope there’s a long afterglow…

And finally, here’s a fun occult tidbit you can take with a grain of salt. I have astrologer friends who have pointed out that on Feb.19-20, the US had its first Pluto return (i.e. Pluto returned to the same place in the US’s natal chart as where it was at the founding) since the time of the Founding Fathers, 1776. This is seen as significant not just for the US, but given the US’s role/influence on global events, on the whole world. Pluto is associated with hidden things, with the ‘underworld,’ with darkness, even evil, with deep transformation, with revolution, and with (of course) plutocracy. It does not complete its return until 2028. I found this amusingly interesting, given the talk about Zelenskiy being like a Ukrainian George Washington. And, the next significant date is April 12. Heads up!


I agree with the end part. Do good work.
I think pessimism is judgement you may have misplaced on me? Also quite a jump to assume pessimism is pushed onto my child.

I had a frank conversation with my daughter this past week about her living 600 miles from a war zone. My only message was to keep an eye on things and over the next 10 years keep an eye out for which way the wind is blowing - and that dad has a space to fall back to if everything gets worse.

But more importantly - I think people who do not look at the cake that is baking are abdicating their responsibility and culpability in the world’s deterioration. Yes, live a good life - but also be aware if one is living a consumption oriented and empty life. Is the joy based on the spiritual or material consumption, or worse does one’s joyful priviledged lifestyle rely on the exploitation of the other 90% of humanity?


Yes. Strangely what you describe came to me about two months before COVID hit, when there was no clue 2020 would be other than just like 2019. I found relaxing into the sorrow and accepting it opened up a whole new profound level under that. It’s also returned with compounded interest this past week.


Thanks Ray for your empathic response. I dealt with it by going into it even more deeply. We often hear people say “I can’t imagine what it would be like…” but the truth is, we can, at least to some extent. So that’s what I did, I imagined a scene in which 5 Ukrainian soldiers were hit by an air strike, and I watched the ghastliness unfold, which I won’t describe, but suffice to say, it gave new meaning to the phrase “blood and soil.” It was a very sensory experience in that all my senses were involved, and my heart; there were a few tears. Afterwards, I had spontaneous mental flashes of history, the sweep of wars and calamities and disasters and famines and all those kind of suffering things, and I was experiencing a “bird’s eye view” of it all, a higher perspective in which there was no emotional attachment to worldly events, just a clear seeing that “this is the way it has been, this is the way it is.” Horrifying and sorrowful deep in our souls, but simply “reality” from a witness-consciousness stance. The odd silent-mute feeling left me.

Care to share what “whole new profound level” unfolded as you relaxed into your sorrow?


Yeah - it hits me every once in a while now, and the scope of this weeks events are stronger than anything in the last 2 years for sure.

No emotional attachment to worldly events, yes.

What you call “The way it has been, the way it is”, I call them cycles. From lunar cycles and I look up in the sky and say “oh yeah, it is a full moon.” to cycles of empires to cycles of species to cycles of mass extinction. I don’t share the assumption of most that humans discovered consciousness. I feel an old consciousness observing and also interacting with humanity just as it did with giant insects and dinosaurs.

But also maybe an analogy - that life is a dance, and when we were born, by that act we chose to get on the dance floor. Some people are doing some really crazy moves while some just stand there looking like they want to dance, but are too afraid to. Others are banging their heads or making quite a spectacle. But it’s all part of the dance.

On a micro level, what am I going to do the next 20 years - or maybe just the next month is all we have? Am I just going to stand in the middle of the dance floor, checking the messages on my device? Or will I let the music sweep me away? If I do, will my older body hold out, lol?
On an even more micro level - is it time for me to return to Eastern Europe? Older and wiser now. Or is it time to build a safe nest?
When we look beyond the attachments we normally have to worldly events - nationality, political affiliation, academic hubris, analysis and so on - what music is actually playing right now?

I hope you understand the music analogy. We can’t control the music that is playing for us, and most people don’t hear it until they detach from all the varied nonsense. Kind of like the song of the siren.
But also, be gentle with ourselves if we are afraid to follow it. It can be a very chaotic path.


Who could have predicted social media facilitating resistance to this extent?


@raybennett Several things came to mind with your mention of “life as a dance”:

–the Dancing Shiva (Shiva Nataraj), in which the ‘5-fold act of consciousness’ is symbolized: creation, preservation/maintenance/sustainment, destruction/dissolution, concealment, and revelation/grace. Is there anything else?

–the (Hinduism-based) statement of Deepak Chopra, that “life is a dance between the divine and the diabolical, with hopefully the divine always ahead, leading.”

–the dance between Putin’s dominator hierarchy and the growth hierarchy that pushes ahead, elevating orange and green (and teal. etc.) structures beyond Putin’s red-amber structure.

I recently watched the 2015 Netflix documentary “Winter on Fire” about a major episode in Ukraine’s fight for freedom. It covers the revolution of 2013-2014, the demonstrations during Yanukovych’s regime. Brutal dancing! Dirty dancing! And some poignant funerals and lovely music–the “ringing of the bells” that hadn’t been rung in about 800 years at the Eastern Orthodox Church. It’s a powerful documentary, available on You Tube now if you haven’t seen it and are interested in this particular slice of Ukrainian history.


I can’t think of anything to add to the dancing.

With regard to Ukrainians I think I do see something happening to Ukrainians this past week.
Within this thing something related to accusations of “pessimism” as well, lol.

Ukrainian society has A LOT of flaws. If nothing else, they at the very least tend towards the pessimistic. Yet they are literally on the front lines defending Democracy against a tyrant.
At the same time, their struggle has been mostly ignored by “Team Teal” and “Team Green” until two weeks ago.

I’m curious of the degree to which Team Teal pats themselves on the back for as you say “elevating structures”, without recognizing the absolute necessity of the dirtiness going on in the trenches in places such as Ukraine. My observation is that Team Teal tends to try to keep their hands clean, which I see as absurd. They stay safe - by analogy they dance in only on the periphery of the dance floor. They believe they are influencing the center as trendsetters but fail to realize they can’t even see the center, much less effectively influence it.
I don’t want to drag down Team Ukraine right now - but yes, I see the dance going on there for what it is. My first interaction with Ukrainians was in Eastern Europe in the late 1990’s when organized crime ruled between Moscow and Bratislava, I tracked the events of its citizens rising up and using sticks and broken glass to topple well armed riot police firing real bullets while the population of The United States was deeply engrossed in “Game of Thrones” Season 4.

If @robbsmith finds me pessimistic and therefore unethical (and therefore by extension abusive towards children as well) I really have to wonder how he regards Ukranian Babuskas. Not the most optimistic demographic on the planet - no, not optimistic at all … yet they also are directly confronting Putin’s Red power structure with a greater deal of effectiveness than Integral diagrams, papers and discussions … I judge.

Here is a little test for everyone who is INTEGRAL. Below I give you a way to combat disinformation with virtually zero chance of any negative repercussions.

  • Will you “just do it” and combat disinformation by a literal Tyrant by leaving your device on the webpage a little bit each day?
  • Or will you respond in the fear that there is some kind of hacking going on, or that you might get a warning letter of some kind from your ISP that says you are naughty?
  • Or Will you all form some kind of other Intellectual rationalization for just letting disinformation to spread unchecked


I’m curious about the fourth option. Autocracy wins. Biden fights it out for three more years, loses reelection, and the next US president is Trump, or some version of Trump, and withdraws from NATO. It seems like significant numbers of people actually want some form of religious autocracy here and in Europe…it that a possibility?


“Europe” is pretty hard to generalize about, and I don’t see the vast majority of Europe headed that way. I don’t see any appetite for religious wars or Autocracy in Europe - at least not West of Kyiv. Particularly not the Russian flavor of Autocracy, which many still alive have tasted.
The United States? Sure, why not Autocracy in America? It seems the majority in the United States want autocracy and to force the other side to follow their way. It’s clear in our foreign policy over the past 100 years and has silently moved into our domestic Politics.

But, yes - I also don’t believe there are only a “few possible outcomes” . I think when people do that as @corey-devos did, they kind of just want to keep it simple in their own minds.
Our global civilization has so many millions of moving parts and several of them are proving to be inadequate as others fail here and there.
What most westerners looking at this also fail to realize, even if Putin is toppled by other Russians - we’ve been there before, lol. Nobody remembers the events in Russia in the 1990’s lol?
There is a trend here, a certain commonality that nice polite academic types just seem to be completely clueless about, lol. - Russia - Iraq - Afghanistan. The same blinders are now going on with the mass media’s idealization of Ukranians and in this topic the hope that Russians will somehow be different the next time they form a government.
This isn’t me being down on Russians nor Ukrainians - it’s just pointing out that western academics usually have no clue at the grass roots level about the people they are forming theories about.
This isn’t the academic’s fault - I have a friend who was in Ukraine with the Peace Corps and even he didn’t get how deeply embedded - among other things - graft and corruption are in the society. More than just “society” - in the collective psyche.


One funny thing I see is that when the media sees westerners going into Ukraine now, they are referred to as volunteers and I haven’t seen the media ask any questions regarding financial compensation. I think most people watching the news think these volunteers are working as unpaid volunteers, while I’m pretty sure they are being well paid. Using 2004 - 2006 dollars, the going rate in Iraq for mercenary “volunteers” was about $15,000 per month, plus or minus depending on the expected danger.
This is just kind of a minor example of something that I just automatically expect, having been friends with British mercenaries who participated in Iraq and Bosnia (though in Bosnia for less pay).
The reason I bring this up is that the cogs of transformation to Democracy is greased with prodigious cash flow - but depending on the collective psyche of the target nation, that cash flow may never actually fundamentally change the culture. It often does, but sometimes does not.



Hey Ray, don’t you think you might be being a little hard on Team Teal (and Green)? The world is quite complex and undergoing many crises simultaneously; even the media is challenged to keep on top of every single crisis/situation/story that deservedly needs ongoing or constant attention. While you say Team Teal tries “to keep their hands clean…” I see it and would frame it a bit differently. Education is probably one of the most important needs in today’s world, education in general and also specifically about today’s world; along with a way to make sense of what is going on in today’s world. Plus, some people drawn to Integral are still trying to learn IT so as to simply apply it to their own lives. Team Integral is responsive, I think, to all of those needs, and in terms of world events, responds to the most current and critical issues–nothing more, nothing less. Neither you nor I know exactly how Integral Theory is or is not affecting the world, or how it will or will not affect the greater world in the future. I’m here because I resonate with it.

Since I’ve been participating at ILC, there have always been people who criticize Team Integral for not doing enough, not getting their hands dirty, not being “in the trenches.” To me, this comes back to the gunas: tamas, rajas, sattva. I think some Integral people use their sattvic (“light”) energy and their rajas energy (passion, desire, activity) to educate and sense-make; I see nothing wrong with this, and see that it is useful–just as I see that there is nothing wrong with getting one’s hands dirty and being in the trenches, and that that is also useful. Both are necessary.


I also see an issue with defining what is a trench? There is an idea of Integral, that I know I want to see in the world, but there is another force here. There are people (I don’t like to categorize anymore), from those I know, who believe we are in a fight for humanity and have a vision of the world, that the more I learn about it, I am pretty sure a lot of people would prefer but is not my vision at all. It’s what triggered the question about autocracy winning. The better way to say it would be what if another system emerges all together. The system I see being fought for is just not seen or spoken of by anyone that I am reading. I think there is a liberal version of what teal is, but there is something else, another version and I think it would be helpful to see it. I have been optimistic my whole life, I am not anymore, even before this happened. For me it’s like integral’s evil twin popped into the room…he has the advantage of surprise