Proposal for Integral Macropolitics

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Article: Proposal for Integral Macropolitics . Daniel GustavAnderson. Integral Review, Vol. 6, No. 1

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“ This treatise proposes the practice of becoming-responsible as a basis for integral micropolitics, defined as taking active responsibility for the well-being of the totality of living beings without exception, for the sake of that well-being alone. After reviewing two extant integral models for political action and interaction, demonstrating some of the limitations inherent in them, some ways are outlined in which the characteristic features of becoming-responsible—including critical clarity, compassion, competence, and consciousness—can be expressed in the realm of public concern; first, theoretically, drawing on a model proposed by poet and artist William Blake, and second, also historically, reflecting on an experiment in radical democracy in Chile (1970-1973), such that both examples critique and advance the claims and methods of mainstream integral theory as well as the alternative approach elaborated in this essay.”


From the conclusion:

“Where Litfin and Wilber present ontological and metaphysical models, representing reality and the transformations they allow that reality, The Four Zoas poses a transformational model for action through an imaginative space. Where Wilber (2000b) posits, “[t]he greater the depth of the holon, the greater its degree of consciousness” (p. 65), The Four Zoas inverts this; increasing depth, or stratification, is decreasing consciousness in the sense of increased reductivity, mimicry, determinism, and potential for irresponsibility in the expression of power, which is implicit in Wilber’s assertion that “the new and senior pattern or wholeness can to some degree limit the indeterminacy (organize the freedom) of its junior holons” (p. 60). Blake’s apocalyptic transformation also contrasts against Wilber’s position that social and personal transformations function in a top-down manner (co-evolution); in The Four Zoas, we see a subordinated holon (Enitharmon) transform the macroholon (Albion the Giant), bottom-up. The case of the Popular Unity period in Chile (1970-1973) shows how the dynamic is expressed under late capital—where subordinating regimes assume a kind of responsibility for those below, even if the terms of that responsibility are by any definition responsible—and how Wilber’s holonography simply flickers in theological development this self-same dynamic of politics in bad faith.

I argue instead for the persistent and intentional labor of instituting a just order through the transformative practice of becoming-responsible.”

More Information

  1. Tom Atlee: Integral Politics as Process
  2. Special Issue of Integral Review, V6 N1 [1]