by Michael Krieger, Liberty Blitzkrieg:
Today’s post will be the fifth and final article this week exploring how a human consciousness development model known as Spiral Dynamics can help us understand the increasingly insane world around us, as well as chart a path forward. To fully grasp the concepts in today’s piece, you should read the prior four articles. I know it’s a lot to ask, but I wouldn’t have dedicated my entire first week back from a break to this stuff if I didn’t think it was of the utmost importance.
We’ve all heard variations of the famous quote by Joseph de Maistre that: “Every nation gets the government it deserves.” I’ve spent the last decade or so rejecting this. After all, it’s hard for someone who has dedicated his life to flushing out the severe societal problems we face to accept that this is our destiny.
Fortunately, the framework of Spiral Dynamics has helped me see the truth in this observation, at least when it comes to America, where we have far more avenues for liberty than more autocratic nations. According to Ken Wilber in his recent e-book, Trump and a Post-Truth World: An Evolutionary Self-Correction, America’s descent into a parasitic, unhealthy, increasingly authoritarian society is a function of traffic jam in the evolution of consciousness that occurred due to the total failure of green level thinking to develop many of the initially positive realizations that sprung up in the 1960’s. As Wilber explains:
One of the paradoxical reasons that it is so important that our culture at large understand the general basics of a developmental view is that such an understanding would allow people to see the general limits of just how much they will be able to agree with each other in the first place. All “1st- tier” stages (crimson, magenta, red, amber, orange, and green), as we saw, think that their truth and values are the only genuinely real and important truth and values. That is not likely to ever change fundamentally (it hasn’t for the last hundred-thousand years that it’s been in existence). But the degree to which those beliefs are held, and the aggression that is invested in such a belief, can indeed be softened, opened, dosed with a bit of kindness and compassion—and the example for this must come from the leading-edge. That’s one of the things that a leading-edge does—while being the “highest” level of evolution at that point, it leads all levels—it provides a direction that can energize the population at large—and failing that, it simply fails to lead. But that is exactly one of the problems that the collapse of green ended up generating—all other values were not met with an open compassion but were aggressively “deconstructed” and decommissioned and tossed in the “basket of deplorables,” and anyone who continued to believe them was subjected to harsh, vocal, and unrelenting ridicule. The “culture wars” (which, by the way, are exactly the battle between amber, orange, and green—between traditional mythic religion, modern science and business, and postmodern multiculturalism) —but the culture wars, under green “leadership,” went nuclear. What green was teaching this culture, by example, were sophisticated ways to despise (and deconstruct) those who disagreed with you—they aren’t just wrong, they are the source of every major force of oppression, injustice, slavery, and worse. You do not want to embrace them with kindness and understanding, you literally want to deconstruct them (while you yourself ounder in aperspectival madness, cackling loudly with each new victory helping move others to an equal infestation by aperspectival insanity). What so desperately needs to be understood, from a developmental and evolutionary perspective, is that each major stage of development becomes a possible station in life for those who stop there, and there is nothing that can be done about that—except make sure that all the means of further development are made as widely available as possible (a core task of the leading-edge), and—just as importantly—making room in the society for individuals who are at each station of life (red, amber, orange, green, or integral), and douse the whole affair with outrageous amounts of loving kindness—and do so by example.
Green hasn’t been doing so by example, as everyone knows by now, and based on some of the recent insane outbursts of violence at Berkeley, for instance, I’m not particularly optimistic that green will get it’s act together and lead the way forward. As such, I gravitative towards Wilber’s second possible resolution to the problem, if we are to move forward.