Monday, July 22, 2013

More Boulderdash

That which we call Boomeritis by any other name would still reek of narcissism.

Jeff Salzman, who calls himself “an integralist, an evolutionary, and now a public commentator who, swimming against the current of prevailing culture, is heartened by the state and future of things,” offers a weekly broadcast called “The Daily Evolver,” during which he works hard to offer an integral look at daily events.

The problem is how to arrive at a common understanding of “integral,” something I’ve written extensively about.  I am sure that Mr. Salzman is a fine person and really does consider himself an integralist, but the actual content of his talks reveals him to be more of an integral wanna-be.  He tends to be so uncritical of the Boomeritis assumptions that permeate his network in Boulder that he presumes much that is not actually in evidence.  Like so much of what comes out of the “integral” networks around Ken Wilber, the rigor necessary for achieving escape velocity from the first tier is sadly lacking.

This detracts not one iota from the honor we should give to Mr. Wilber and his circle for their willingness to tackle the evolutionary opportunity that Spirit, visible via the cognitive line at teal, appears to be calling forth. Our capacity to witness the elements of the Integral Model and to explore how to assess today’s experiences thereby is a truly remarkable gift, and we acknowledge the courage it takes to be willing to be commanded by its insights.

In his most recent broadcast, Mr. Salzman spends time attempting an integral analysis of the George Zimmerman trial and its aftermath.  For the most part, he is on solid but very conventional ground when he begins by noting that the “Big Three” levels of first tier consciousness that prevail in the United States—amber, orange, and green—each have a different way of seeing and interpreting the matter.

But his lack of rigor renders the balance of his presentation ineffectual (when not downright hilarious).