Welcome to Integral Oceania.
A purpose of this site is to facilitate the connection of people in Australia, New Zealand, and the rest of Oceania, who are engaged in co-seeing and co-building ever more integral worlds.
Starting in September, 2011, this site is being reviewed and refreshed to make it more suitable for integrally-informed practitioners within Oceania. Please feel free to add your own page(s) under People and/or Consultancies, provide other Events and Resources, or introduce other appropriate content. To start an entirely new page use AddAPage and make sure you fill out the appropriate categories.
If you have content that you would like to add to the site, and you would prefer to send it to the site moderators for them to upload, please email Gerry (gjbruitzman at hotmail.com) or Adam (adam at integralinstitute.org.au).
What is Integral?
One way to understand the term 'integral' is to agree with Ken Wilber in claiming:
"The word integral means comprehensive, inclusive, non-marginalising, 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."
(from Ken Wilber's "Foreword" in Frank Visser's book Ken Wilber: Thought as Passion (2003), pp. xii-xiii).
Another way to understand the term 'integral' is given in Mark Edwards' work. Building on Wilber's recent work with 5 primary integral lenses (quadrants, levels and lines of development, states of consciousness, and types) in his Integral AQAL (All-Quadrants, All-Levels) Theory and Practice, Edwards has conducted an extensive multiparadigm review and analysis to identify a comprehensive set of 24 integral lenses that can be used for organisational transformation:
Holarchy category: deep structure, developmental holarchy, ecological holarchy, governance/organising holarchy
Bipolar category: interior-exterior, transformation-translation, internal-external, agency-communion, health-pathology
Cyclical category: system dynamics, learning, transition process, inclusive emergence, evolutionary selection
Relational category: mediation, alignment, relational exchange
Standpoint category: stakeholder, states of consciousness, personal perspectives, postmodern or decentring
Multimorphic category: spirituality, organisational streams, types
(from Mark Edwards' book Organisational Transformation for Sustainability: An Integral Metatheory (2010), p. 130).
Various other ways to understand the term 'integral' are provided by Sri Aurobindo, Ervin Laszlo, Jacques Maritain, Pitirim Sorokin, Rudolf Steiner, and many other authors, some of whom are listed in the Resources section.
If you are interested in Ken Wilber's Integral AQAL Theory and Practice, we recommend you read Sean Esbjorn-Hargens' superb summary, An Overview of Integral Theory: An All-Inclusive Framework for the 21st Century, http://integrallife.com/files/Integral_Theory_3-2-2009.pdf.
An Example of an Integral Worldview
Here is a basic outline of one of many possible integral worldviews. This integral worldview acknowledges that people make sense of their lives in different ways as their lives and life conditions change to become more or less complex. It introduces seven levels of human development with a few selected features prominent at each level highlighted:
1. In times of survival, our basic instinctive way of sense-making is very acutely focused on the next bite of food, the next drink of water, and finding a safe place to get through the day and night.
2. With food, water and shelter more or less secured, our pre-egoic, magical ways of sense-making become dependent on revered elders telling and celebrating again and again their stories about the ways to live within our family, clan or tribe.
3. With the tribe challenged from both within and without, our first-person, egocentric, "me" oriented, magical-mythic ways of sense-making fight to sort out who is the most powerful Chief, Lord, King or Emperor, and our place amidst the chains of power within our family, tribe, kingdom or empire.
4. With egocentricity put in service of a greater collective good, our second-person, ethnocentric/sociocentric, "us" oriented, mythic ways of sense-making inhabit a traditional, moral, authoritarian, mythological, totalitarian, Absolute Order of Truth, Goodness and Beauty.
5. With methodological, objective questioning of natural worlds and mythic, totalitarian, absolute orders occurring, our third-person, worldcentric, "all of us" oriented, disciplinary, systemic, rational ways of sense-making are invested in the strategic, innovative use of Reason in the disciplines of science, law, economics, religion, art, philosophy, and any other fields of interest, and in the successful demonstration of adequate evidence for legitimate achievements.
6. With post-formal cognition of the limitations of formal rationality, our fourth-person, pluralistic, relativistic, interdisciplinary, metasystemic, planetcentric, "each of us" oriented ways of sense-making develop to appreciate significant diversity in the knower (different modes of epistemology), in knowing (different modes of methodology), and in the known (different modes of ontology), and the worldwide diversity of bio-psycho-socio-cultural contexts in which facts, values, norms and texts are interpreted.
7. With humanity divided into individuals and their groups contesting the quality of each other's lives across the six aforementioned levels of human development around the globe, our fifth-person to nth-person, integral, transdisciplinary, complex multi-variate, full spectrum developmental, post-metaphysical, cross-paradigmatic, integrative, transformative, kosmoscentric, aperspectival, trans-egoic ways of sense-making wonder and celebrate in seeing already everpresent and in building ever better integral worlds in which all living beings and their lifeworlds are able to thrive in local to global, interconnected, evolutionary terms that allow appropriate aesthetic, ethical, spiritual, material and joyful dignity at each and every stage of their development.
Some Recommended Sources in Integral AQAL Theory and Practice
For some important demonstrations of integral sense-making and integral world-making go online at:
If you want to expand and deepen your appreciation and understanding of integral sense-making and world-making in the fields of Integral Meta-Studies, Transdisciplinary Studies, Critical Realism, Traditional Wisdom, Futures Studies, Complexity Theories, and Systems Theories go to the Resources section.
Categories of things we know about