Here is the group’s description:
In Integral philosophy, we distinguish between Eros and Agape. Eros is the force driving creation to reach higher and higher. Agape is the transcendent force reaching down and including lower levels. Both of these drives are necessary and important … and they manifest up and down the Spiral of existence at every level.
This group is focused on Agape: the self-immanent, descending current of evolution. In politics, this take the form of a focus on preserving what needs to be preserved, maintaining healthy values, and conserving valuable traditions. We are not defenders of the status quo, but we believe progress needs the attention of an integrally-informed consciousness in order to move ahead responsibly and deliberately.
We focus on what we do not to exclude Eros, but to ensure the integrity of the Spiral in which the Ascending and Descending currents meet. In that sense, our “conservative” ethos is married with a “progressive” spirit.
And here is my post today:
Yesterday on Integral Global, Theo Horesh asked: “Whether or not we want to support the Sanders campaign, the question remains as to whether the most inclusive mass movements will be supported or subverted by integral thinkers.”
I didn’t write a long response. But I pointed to something else I wrote earlier yesterday which expressed my vision of Integral Politics as a sort of Integral Methodological Pluralism in the political sphere, serving as a universal donor of wisdom to every first-tier political meme as it is embodied in particular parties and institutions. I concurred with him that green/socialist political movements have a ways to grow before entering maturity and having their full impact on the USA in particular, and I opined that the Integral movement needs to support their emergence. But support and subvert are not necessarily opposed! I said that the Green Meme will wreak havoc if left to its own devices (so will any first-tier meme), and needs to be subverted to avoid potentially catastrophic missteps, and to protect the health of other valid political memes (values and real people and institutions) up and down the Spiral.
I think what Theo was asking for is best handled really in a sort of Integral Progressive movement, much like there are also Integral Christian and Integral Buddhist scenes. I said, “Let the IPs choose the best way to move progressive issues forward — e.g., support Sanders or Clinton? — and let the Integral Conservatives or whatever they call themselves (though they are seemingly not to be found at this Facebook Integral-themed group) choose the best way to advance conservative causes in an integral direction. One group represents the impulse to Eros and the other to Agape, and let them each check the others’ Phobos and Thanatos. Nothing like this has ever been done in any other political movement, though in a sense it could be seen just as an expression of the emergence of ‘wings’ in the Integral political scene. The idea that the Integral movement — uniquely charged with protecting the entire Spiral — should *only* align itself with ‘progressive’ political causes, indeed those affiliated and endorsed by only one first-tier meme, Green — is frankly a bit frightening. It may answer the challenge of the hour, but it is short-sighted in the extreme. It is the perfect recipe for a nightmare scenario. Let Green do Green well. Let the post-Green memes do what only they can do.”
It was in writing these words that I realized that lo and behold *I* was one of the Integral Conservatives that I was talking about! In conversations on Facebook since last fall, I had been consistently saying and liking things that were closer to the political mainstream (Hillary Clinton as opposed to Bernie Sanders, Democratic Party as opposed to Radical Left, conventional reality vs. conspiracy theories, etc.) It seemed that 90% of my Facebook friends were all drifting farther away from the mainstream and into this new-fangled radicalism. Well good luck and God bless with that, but I’m ready for something different. The majority of people on Integral Global and similar groups sometimes seem to want nothing more than Green philosophy and spirituality with a few sprinkles on top, rebranded as “Integral”. Every day it’s the same thing: more Wilber bashing, more rabid anti-capitalism, more Hillary derangement syndrome, more conspiracy theories, more calls for Revolution!(CC NC-ND), and more silence about how much this is really in tune with the fuller, expansive spirit of Integral. I don’t think they’re all bad Integralists (not by a long shot), and I certainly don’t think they’re bad people, but they’re out of touch. I just think it might be an appropriate time to let the spirit of Agape run wild.
If you feel a kinship to our purpose, you are warmly invited to join Integral Agape.