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About Integral theory

About Integral Theory

Integral Theory is a synthesizing philosophy and psychology brought to life by the world famous American philosopher and writer, Ken Wilber at the end of the 20th century. This exciting new theory that integrates body mind and spirit, in the territories of self, culture, and nature, gives us a professional synthesis of western psychology and the teachings of the great spiritual wisdom traditions. Wilber goes beyond mere eclecticism or subjective mish mashing: he seriously draws together hundreds of systems from all ages and cultures from around the globe, and finds the underlying common patterns, that he articulates in different models - such as the four quadrants, the levels and lines of development, and the states and types of
consciousness. Creating an integral development theory that spans from infanthood through the so called „normal” adult life to spiritual awakening of the Universal Spirit or the Buddha-mind is in itself a remarkable achievement of our times, and also a necessary steps if we would like to have a global psychology and spirituality in a global time. Why not putting together the pieces of cross-cultural knowledge on body, mind, soul and spirit, and have a full spectrum psychology? Wilber did that.

Integral Theory is integral in a multiple sense. It integrates spirituality and science, or more precisely the pre-modern, modern, and post-modern ways of knowing thus creating a post-postmodern stance. With integral theory, or the AQAL model we are also able to integrate the different schools of western psychology that is a remarkable thing in itself, for those, who are tired of being scattered in science, and wish to rest under an umbrella of a theoretical unity.
We believe, that what is integral for the mind, is unity for the heart. The heart feels unity, and the mind knows it, if it has an integral theoretical framework as a tool to think unity. An integral psychology gives also a great opportunity for the spiritual teachers who are typically familiar with the transpersonal realms of human reality, but less concerned with the personal and prepersonal stages, which they see as realms simply to be transcended. Many people today experience, that transcending the ego requires a great deal of work on the ego, so integrating psychotherapy and spirituality is a good idea for those, who seek unity in the science of the inner world. As spiritual people sometimes tend to look down at psychology,
psychologist tend to look down on spirituality. Integral theory can provide a pacifying space, where this debate can calm, upon a reasonable theoretical understanding.

AQAL – an acronym for All Quadrants All Levels, that refers to Integral Theory - is integrating science and religion, the objective and subjective realms, meditation and psychotherapy, genuine mysticism, ecology, art, social sciences, business, healthcare, law - to name a few.
Let us quote some integral text from genuine sources, and refer you to further readings.

Starting with the words of Ken Wilber – quoted from Esbjorn-Hargens „An All-Inclusive Framework for the 21st Century” at www.integralife.com:
"The word integral means comprehensive, inclusive, non-marginalizing, embracing. Integral approaches to any field attempt to be exactly that: to include as many perspectives, styles, and methodologies as possible within a coherent view of the topic. In a certain sense, integral approaches are “meta-paradigms,” or ways to draw together an already existing number of separate paradigms into an interrelated network of approaches that are mutually enriching." –
Ken Wilber

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