Special Pre/Trans Considerations 1


I have already mentioned already the basic principles of the (qualitative) binary system. This combines (rational) linear and (intuitive) circular type understanding.   The circular aspect of this approach views reality in terms of complementary poles and is based on a both/and logic. Movement is two-way and relative.

So we view pre and trans here in complementary terms (i.e. as both pre and trans). Because movement is two-way, trans implies pre and pre implies trans.

The linear aspect of the approach attempts to express this two-way relative movement in one-way fashion. Because dynamic movement is bi-directional, when we express this in linear one-directional terms, we always get two interpretations with equal validity.

So if one linear interpretation expresses the direction of movement in development as going from pre to trans, then the opposite (and equally valid interpretation) will express the movement as going from trans to pre.

Both aspects are essential for proper understanding. The linear approach (1) enables (rational) differentiation of opposite poles; the circular approach (0) enables corresponding (intuitive) integration. (Thus the circular approach is paradoxical in rational terms). It is the interaction of both aspects that explains the truly dynamic nature of development.

Human development involves the self in relation to the world. So these two poles i.e. the self (psychological) and world (physical) are fundamental in terms of all relationships.

In terms of this relationship of psychological and physical, I distinguish three fundamental types of directional movement viz. horizontal, vertical and diagonal.

The movement within a given level of development is the horizontal direction.

The movement in terms of different levels of development is the vertical direction.

Finally the simultaneous movement within and between different levels is the diagonal direction.

Thus the relationship as between pre and trans has linear and circular interpretations in terms of each of these directions.

This posting deals with the horizontal direction which relates to a given level of development.

I have already introduced a model of psychological development specifically designed to allow for this dual interpretation (in linear and circular terms).

L0 (Level 0) - is the (middle) rational level and the only one which is purely linear (i.e. circular complementary notions do not apply).

L1 (Level1) - relates directly to the horizontal direction. It has two aspects - which are dynamically related;

LL1 (Lower Level 1) where complementary understanding (in terms of the horizontal direction) is still somewhat confused; and HL1 (where complementary understanding is properly differentiated).

So we are directly concerned here with both LL1 and HL1. (I will concentrate mostly on HL1, as the "higher" level provides the appropriate basis for interpreting the confusion of the "lower" level).

I have referred on many occasions to HL1 as the circular level (which literally involves a great growth in circular type understanding). This would equate with the subtle realm.

Remember we are talking here about the horizontal direction (which involves two opposite poles). The most usual way of expressing it is in terms of external (physical) and internal (psychological) aspects. Alternatively we could simply say objective and subjective aspects.

When using Holistic Mathematics the two directions are positive (physical) and negative (psychological). However we can also look at these opposite poles also in terms of pre and trans.

I have expressed reservations before regarding the use of Eastern mystical categories in terms of the "higher" levels of spiritual development. This is not a criticism of the Eastern approach as such but rather of its discontinuity with Western categories of thought. It creates difficulty in properly integrating this intuitive spiritual worldview with more rational perspectives.

The Western mystical approach - despite many limitations - lends itself more easily to the approach I am suggesting.

The developmental categories of Piaget which apply at L0 (the rational linear level) are well known. These are conop (concrete operational thinking) and formop (formal operational thinking). Whereas the latter is more empirical and sense based, the latter is more mental and conceptual.

Now we have more subtle intuitively based correspondents of these which unfold at the "higher" levels.

However whereas at L0, understanding is linear (and one-directional), now at the more (circular) intuitive HL1, it is two-directional. So we have two "higher" level (conop) sense stages (which I refer to as supersensory) and two "higher" level (formop) mental stages (which I refer to as surprarational) at this level).

The key thing to remember is that whereas the stages at L0 are merely rational, at HL1, they have a binary structure i.e. combined linear (rational) and circular (intuitive) aspects.

My own approach - though using a very different translation - is reflected by the Western mystical tradition. Thus the four stages used in Evelyn Underhill's classic study "Mysticism" (The Awakening of the self, The Purification of the Self, The Illumination of the Self and the Dark Night of the Soul) correspond in essentials to my four stages of HL1.

However the purpose here is not to give an exhaustive account of these stages (which I have done elsewhere) but rather to illustrate the nature of binary interaction (involving pre and trans)..

The first supersensory stage involves an outpouring of spiritual illumination through which nature is recreated in a marvellous new manner. Now this relatively extroverted phase relates principally to the external (objective) pole.

Now this richly intuitive stage will be categorised in rational (linear) terms as transpersonal. However because this interpretation inevitably changes it is vital to appreciate the correct dynamics of what is involved.

Because intuition combines polar opposites it is both pre and trans. However the outpouring of pure illumination becomes identified with the world (due to the externalised focus of this phase). Thus in rational terms the two poles begin to split with this experience of the world interpreted as transpersonal. This creates an imbalance in terms of the neglected self aspect which is gradually seen as pre. As old habits resurface in intensified form, disillusionment sets in, and one becomes increasingly unable to sustain outward momentum.

The next stage - designed to correct this imbalance is very introverted involving an interior form of illumination which is referred to the Western ascetical tradition as purgation.

Because of identification of the previous external aspect as trans, one initially identifies this new stage as pre interpreting it as a marked regression in one's spiritual journey.

Gradually however one becomes accustomed to this strange new underworld - which brings about enhanced meditative ability - and accepts it as an authentic transpersonal stage.

One is now very much in danger of looking now at the previous "worldly" phase as pre (where one was blind to many spiritual delusions).

The basic point is clear. Whether a stage is identified as pre or trans depends on the frame of reference.

If one identifies with the external pole, then the worldly aspect is trans and the introverted phase pre.

If one identifies with the interior aspect as trans then the opposite pole is seen as pre.

In other words pre and trans – from a dynamic perspective - are purely relative.

So when we try to express its nature in (static) linear terms two opposite interpretations are equally valid.

This dialectic now carries over into the more formalised stages.

We have the beginning of the third suprarational stage. Once it starts with a peak experience in the outpouring of pure illumination. This pure intuition is neither pre nor trans.

This leads to a highly transparent holistic appreciation of creation. Once more a degree of rigidity and attachment sets in as one identifies the stage as transpersonal and believes that one is making significant progress. This eventually creates the same old problem of imbalance and the inability of the inner self to sustain one’s active commitments.

Again we have the reversal back to a profoundly introverted stage of internal (self) development. As all appears lost this seems deeply pre. However once more one slowly comes to accept the deeply authentical trans nature of the stage.

The dialectic in relation to internal and external only ceases when one no longer identifies with phenomenal appearances. Indeed the root of all (possessive) attachment lies in dualistic understanding. With "one's house all stilled" the identity of pre and trans as pure spirit is realised.

So now we can define the pre/trans fallacy (in terms of its horizontal direction).

In dynamic terms, experience is both pre and trans (in horizontal terms).

In static linear terms this gives rise to two opposite interpretations (either pre or trans)..

If the external pole (physical) is trans, then the internal pole (psychological) is pre;

If the internal pole (psychological) is trans then the internal pole (physical) is pre.

The pre/trans fallacy here would consist in

(a) failing to recognise the dynamic complementarity of pre and trans (in horizontal terms)

(b) taking a one-sided linear interpretation. This follows directly from (a).

Thus one can elevate the world (trans) with self (pre). Alternatively one can elevate the self (trans) with world (pre).


Because transpersonal development - especially in the Eastern traditions - is typically associated with the self, the common expression of this fallacy (as in Ken Wilber's work) is the tendency to identify the psychological self as trans and the physical world as pre.

This leads to considerable imbalance and the elevation of psychology over physics.

One looks at reality dualistically (i.e. matter is seen to exist independently of mind). This facilitates hierarchical distinctions where "inanimate" matter is placed on the "lower" rungs and "animate" spiritual self on the "higher" rungs of evolution.

I must stress once again that this is highly misleading and is due to the misapplication of linear thinking where it does not strictly applies.

From the spiritual intuitive perspective physical and psychological reality are identical. Thus correctly speaking it is not just the personal self that is transformed during HL1. Physical creation equally undergoes profound transformation.

So the correct relationship between both is one of radical equality (in horizontal terms).

The whole dynamic of movement - as we have seen - during HL1 - comes from correcting the imbalances that arise from emphasising one pole over the other.

Thus initially in my binary treatment, physical reality is elevated over self (supersensory stage - external direction). This then gives way to the opposite purgative stage where self is now emphasised (supersensory stage - internal direction).

We then have - at a deeper conceptual level - the emphasis of physical reality over self (suprarational stage - external direction). This gives way to the deeper purgative stage where one becomes profoundly immersed in self (suprarational stage - internal direction).

This leads to the removal of all rigid dualistic understanding (at a conscious level) and paves the way for the pure identity of both poles in spirit.

When you see it from the binary perspective, the very term transpersonal psychology is misleading (as it implies that transpersonal development applies solely to the self).

We should equally speak of transpersonal (or transrational) physics and indeed transrational science generally.

Thus correctly understood, there is an important new scientific paradigm (e.g. physics, biology, economics etc.) based on HL1. It applies intimately to the "hardest" of sciences i.e. mathematics. An entirely new type of mathematics with remarkable applications - which I call Holistic Mathematics 1 - comes from the appropriate non-dualistic interpretation of HL1.

I will now turn briefly to the other horizontal level i.e. LL1 (which corresponds to rep-mind).

The correct way to understand this level in binary terms is through a process of inverting the approach applicable to HL1.

Once again the correct reference point at HL1 is the ultimate identity of pre and trans (as pure intuition). Confusion then comes from (rigidly) identifying reality as either pre or trans.

By contrast the correct reference point at LL1 is the ultimate separation of pre and trans i.e. neither pre nor trans (as pure reason). Confusion then arises from identifying reality (in undifferentiated terms) as both pre and trans.

Thus the key problem during this level is that the child has still not properly separated the internal ego from the external world. True personal identity (as neither pre nor trans) has not yet been attained.

Thus there is still the confusion here (at a horizontal level) of transpersonal and prepersonal elements. Universal mythic type understanding remain merged with immediate impulsive desires. The child uses these undifferentiated (transpersonal) elements as a bargaining tool to satisfy (prepersonal) desires.

Again we can identify this going through two phases. During the earlier phase mythic understanding is directly manifest in concrete activities. During the later phase it is manifest - more at a distance - in terms of general background understanding.

The pre/trans fallacy here consists of:

This once again follows directly from the above.

Now once again Ken tends to collapse this to a unary interpretation.

For Ken the child's behaviour is simply prepersonal (pre). In my opinion this misses the key dynamic of child behaviour (i.e. the confused relationship of pre and trans)..

Thus we can give the pre/trans fallacy a binary interpretation at both LL1 and HL1.

In the first instance (LL1) the correct reference point is the rational linear definition (as neither pre nor trans).

Circular understanding here consists of the confused complementarity of pre and trans.

In the second instance (HL1) the correct reference point is the intuitive circular definition (as both pre and trans).

Linear understanding here consists of the confused separation of pre and trans.

In the next posting - on this topic - I will deal with the vertical direction (applicable to HL2 and LL2).



Response from Conrad



Your posts are huge, and so abstract as to make practical understanding of your ideas difficult. You would do better to include examples along the way of each of your statements.

I will address just one of your presumptions here, because it seems to me that your underlying assumptions have errors in them which become magnified on down the line. A flaw which would be more avoidable if concrete examples were used for consideration, rather than merely abstract line of logic.

"Human development involves the self (in relation to the world) and world (in relation to self). So these two poles i.e. the self (psychological) and world (physical) are fundamental in terms of all relationships."

For instance, in the above statement, you make a distinction between self and world which I think is deeply flawed.

By defining "self" as the merely psychological component of ourselves, and "world" as the physical dimension of experience, you severely distort the analysis which ensues.

Even as logical divisors, it would seem to me far better to define these two as "subjective" and "objective" realms of experience. The definition of self, I feel must be far more fluid than "psychological" allows.

The self, essentially, is defined by the issue of identity, which is only in part a psychological issue. The sense of "world," on the other hand, is defined by the experience of "other." Now it is entirely possible, and even common, for us to be identified with objective physical reality (such as our own physical bodies), and not identified with internal, psychological factors (such as "the devil made me do it") that take on the status of "other," and are projected to exist in both the physical and psychological worlds as an "other."

Whatever the self identifies with, it is. If we identify with the body (and we all do) we become it, suffer it, struggle with it, and feel that "others" in "the world out there" can act upon us by acting upon our bodies. We don't make a functional distinction between the two. We don't say "someone hit my body," we say "someone hit me." "Me" and the physical body are experienced as identical. Likewise, if I fear that someone is going to hit me, even though such an event is not happening, I will experience all the fear of an "other" as if such an objective threat were actually present in the world "outside" me, even when it is a purely psychological sensation, even a delusion.

So the barrier between self an other is highly flexible, and not dependent upon the dimensional realms of experience, like physical and psychological. In actual action, we do not pay as much attention to those distinctions as we would like to think. Whatever we identify with in the moment is what we are as a "self", and whatever we differentiate ourselves from is the "world" of others. And we there is a huge area between the extremes of each where we can shift our identification with ease, often as easily as changing our clothes.

So the movements between "levels" that you speak of are not, fundamentally, actual movements from one level to another, but shifts in our own activity of identification and differentiation.

We can identify with anything, in any moment, no matter how deluded we might be, and actually experience self and world in that fashion.

The reason I like Adi Da's levels (or stages of life) for purposes of discussion is that they refer to real levels of identification that we are all actively engaged in. In other words, we don't just identify with body, but with emotion, with mind, with intuition, with "higher" spiritual experience, with Divine Love, even with the root of separate self itself. In any moment, one can be focused upon the elements of such identification, but the identification itself goes on simultaneously in all dimensions. Growth is then about freedom from identification, not development of the area itself. One can cross from one "level" to another almost instantly, depending upon how free one is from identification with either higher or lower levels. It doesn't actually matter so much what one is identified with, because identification always fixes one in place. It's just that the freer one is, the less attention is bound to any level, or at least levels of chronic bondage, and yet attention then tends to "float" to the levels at which one is still bound.

What I am saying is that there are no real levels of "self" but only dimensions of experience that can be identified with. Therefore the pre-rational, rational, supra-rational lineage of attention is meaningful only to those identified with rationality itself (like Ken Wilbur), and not very relevant to those identified with other dimensions of experience (of which there are untold numbers). Everyone of course must deal with rationality and its issues, since it represents a part of the dimension of mind which we all encounter, and identify with, regularly. But it is only a small part of the larger dimension of mind, and not even the central point of the mind. So focusing on it as WIlbur does (and which you do to a lesser extent) only distorts the issues.

Identifying with rationality turns this aspect of mind into "self," and turns "irrationality" (or everything else in the universe) into an "other." It is an inherently narcissistic world-view, making self the focus and lumping everything not-self (or not-rational) into a giant "other."

It would seem to me that the truly transcendental direction of development is not in the direction of either self or world, but in becoming free from the acts of identification which constantly create these divided realms. Functioning in such a free manner allows a truly unified, or radically Holistic approach to development, rather than efforts of internal and external manipulation and struggle

Reply from Peter


Dear Conrad,

Thank you for your response.

Sadly however you misrepresent my position.

I am of course not a proponent of dualistic thinking in the manner you suggest. This should be perfectly clear from my post and from many other discussions I have had already on the Forum.

Indeed I state categorically in the post that "The root of all (possessive) attachment lies in dualistic understanding".

However I strongly believe, that experience must be properly differentiated before true integration can take place. If you are somehow implying therefore that we can somehow do without (dualistic) differentiation then I cannot accept your position.

Th difficulties you have with the use of the words "physical" and "psychological" illustrate precisely why I tend to favour a more abstract approach in stating my position. I do not wish to get bogged down with terms that have differing experiential interpretations.

I could have avoided using these words altogether by saying that dualistic experience is conditioned - at all levels - by polar opposites (which would be more precise but more abstract). I have given a great deal of consideration to my contribution and now invite participants to examine carefully my handling of key concepts such as "complementary opposites" and "bi-directional movement". These form the basis of my (methodological) criticism of Ken Wilber's approach and have such a wide range of applicability that I consider them extremely important.

Curiously, you do not address the pre-trans fallacy in your reply (though it was the subject of my post). Thus many of the points you raise - though interesting in their own right - are not directly related to the present topic.

While I a agree in a general way with a great deal of what you say I am puzzled as to where you see a conflict with my own position.

For example you say "whatever the self identifies with it is"

Now in a very recent posting "I am a Rock" - where I argue for pure spiritual identification - I make this very point.

Also you say "so the movements between "levels" that you speak of are not, fundamentally, actual movements from one level to another, but shifts in our own activity of identification and differentiation."

Again, I would agree with this to a degree. My criticism of the linear approach to development (with Level 1, Level 2, Level 3 … Level N), has led me to a very different model of relative development (i.e. allowing for positive and negative movement within levels, between levels and within and between levels). Thus for example - in vertical terms - someone who is at the "highest" level in my approach, is by definition also at the "lowest". So the view that one can be fundamentally "more advanced" in spiritual terms than anyone else clearly does not arise with this approach.

However we must properly differentiate various levels of experience before true flexible integration can take place. (This is borne out by the spiritual accounts of the great mystics).

Of course identification (or attachment) is bondage. However there is a certain sense in which it is even necessary. It is the very realisation of such slavery that creates the desire for true freedom. Once again a person needs to strongly differentiate experience (in dualistic terms) before seeking integration. Otherwise a very vapid type of freedom indeed will arise. So the struggle and conflict must necessarily coexist with the desire for freedom and peace.

As I have stated in previous correspondence with you, I believe that neither reason nor feeling are primary but rather the will - which lies at the centre of being. It serves as the very expression of the desire for meaning and truth as simple being. In all authentic mystical spirituality - however differently expressed - we get this primary emphasis on will. Only through this centre that can one properly harmonise reason and emotion, remaining fully oneself while being lost (and found) in the other.

Conrad, reread my posts. My position is far more subtle than you seem to imagine.






Further Response from Conrad

"I am of course not a proponent of dualistic thinking in the manner you suggest. This should be perfectly clear from my post and from many other discussions I have had already on the Forum.

"Indeed I state categorically in the post that "The root of all (possessive) attachment lies in dualistic understanding".

"However I strongly believe, that experience must be properly differentiated before true integration can take place. If you are somehow implying therefore that we can somehow do without (dualistic) differentiation then I cannot accept your position."

Dear Peter,

I don't have any proplems with dualistic thinking, since thinking is itself inherently dualistic. I don't quarrel with your coming up with pairs of opposites. I'm only arguing for the most appropriate and clarifying divisions as a basis for understanding human and spiritual growth. I have no argument at all with the need for differentiation, as a previous series of posts of mine testify to (you probably missed them in this smorgasborg of a forum).

"The difficulties you have with the use of the words "physical" and "psychological" illustrate precisely why I tend to favour a more abstract approach in stating my position. I do not wish to get bogged down with terms that have differing experiential interpretations. "

I do disagree with this. Not only is the duality between physical and psychological imprecise (especially in view of brain-mind research), but requires real concrete examples to make your ideas clear. In order to even discuss the "pre-trans" dieas you have it is necessary to be very clear about the presumptions you have made, or we will be arguing from a different set of assumptions.

"I could have avoided using these words altogether by saying that dualistic experience is conditioned - at all levels - by polar opposites (which would be more precise but more abstract). I have given a great deal of consideration to my contribution and now invite participants to examine carefully my handling of key concepts such as "complementary opposites" and "bi-directional movement". These form the basis of my (methodological) criticism of Ken Wilber's approach and have such a wide range of applicability that I consider them extremely important. "

I think your views on the structural level of inegrating dualties are very good and interesting, but I think you need to pay attention also to the root assumptions you are making about the real nature of the actual dualities we encounter in life, the structure of the levels of experience, and the structure of mind itself. Your sloppiness in using the terms "psychological" and "physical" as dual opposites betrays some weaknesses in your work here.

"Curiously, you do not address the pre-trans fallacy in your reply (though it was the subject of my post). Thus many of the points you raise - though interesting in their own right - are not directly related to the present topic."

As I say, the assumptions must be examined first in any argument, which is what my post addressed. "While I a agree in a general way with a great deal of what you say I am puzzled as to where you see a conflict with my own position."

The differences first come into play at the level of what how we should even properly consider a pre/trans theory in the context of spiritual pracitce and human development. As someone who has always been very interested in these matters, and in all kinds of theoretical systems, I was myself greatly relieved to consider Adi Da's seven stages of life as the basis for this kind of developmental consideration. TO consider pre/trans issues only in relation to rationality, or emotion, or will as you suggest, or whatever, does not take into account the actual relationship of each of these potential lines of development. None of these exist on their own, or merely in relationship to each other, but in relation to a structural whole. So to consider the pre/trans issue you have to consider he structural whole.

What I particularly find useful about the seven stages conceptual format is that it attempts to ground its developmental pattern in real structures of actual human experience that have both a lateral and a horizontal relationship to one another, as you suggest, as well as the possibility of diagonal movement. In essence, we are talking about the "enlightenment of a whole body," which already is existing at all levels simultaneously, not merely progressing through a series of stages of development. In other words, the seven stages of growth, being physical, emotional-sexual, mental/will, psychic-intuitive, subtle-mystical, transcendental-causal, and Divinely Awakened, are simultaneously active in us. And yet there is also a hierarchical relationship between levels, in which the earlier must be developed more intensively first in order for the latter to flower.

Keeping these developmental stages rooted in concrete structures of the human psycho-physical body-mind, and in the strucures of the cosmos itself, is essential to understanding the pre/trans notion.

Wilbur's application of it to rationality seems to be the root of the problems you have been doing a very good job at describing. His rather inflexible model is inflexible simply because the developmental model focused on rationality requires it to be so. If WIlbur had paid more attention to his root assumptions about the significance of rationality, he would more easily have avoided these pitfalls. Likewise, there are pitfalls you are in danger of falling into so long as you do not ground yourself in a comprehensive understanding of the actual dualities whose structure you are trying to understand. I think your lack of concrete examples springs not merely from a desire to avoid the messiness of such things, but because messiness is unavoidable as long as you have not thought these matters through.

Likewise, the usefullness of your ideas wis limited by your unwillingness to acutally apply them to the messy realities of life in aconcrete form. Such application and testing, however, is the best way to guard yourself against merely abstracted conceptualizing. You don't have to use Adi Da's model of the seven stages, but you do have to come up with a model far more sophisticated than Psychological vs. Physicial, as even you are clearly aware of.

I think that you must clearly define what these levels you are talking about actually are, before talking about the movements and relationships between them. Putting "will" at the center of the chart, for instance, is not a very well thought out scheme, as far as I am concerned. From a seven stages point of view, the development of the will is central to the third stage of life, which is where you and most of us are spending much of our developmental energies, but it is not central to the schemata itself. It is developmentally important in that without the will there is no "higher" evolution. But the development of the will cannot be seen in isolation, since there is no development of will without a foundation of differentiation from the parents (first stge of life) and development of basic emotional-sexual feeling and socialization. THe struggle with will is largely a sign of unfinished development in the earlier stages, and a singular focus on it does not bring maturity about. This is just an example of the real problems you will face in taking this model out into the real world at this stage in your work.

"Conrad, reread my posts. My position is far more subtle than you seem to imagine."

I agree with you that your positions are probably more subtle than this, and think you have much potential here in your attempts to go beyond WIlbur. I encourage you to do so, but I have to point out some things you are overlooking along the way that will come back to haunt you and render your work unreceivable by either Wilbur or a larger public than this forum.



Further reply from Peter



I have read your response carefully and whereas I appreciate the substance and intelligence of your remarks I feel that your criticism is unfair and out of context.

To satisfactorily address all the general philosophical points you make would take - I imagine - a sizeable book. Clearly it is not possible - or even appropriate - to try and do this within the confines of a single post.(You already complained about its undue length). Therefore I did not attempt to fill in the full background context to the pre/trans fallacy (in the post).

You then make the unwarranted assumption that I have not considered these matters carefully and deeply. This simply is not true. I ahve given enormous attention to the matter.(If you are genuinely interested you should read "Transforming Voyage" and plenty of other material at my web site on Holistic Mathematics).

The key problem is that you are continually imposing the beliefs and perceptions - which undoubtedly have considerable meaning for you - in a context where they are far less appropriate.

I get the strong sense that you are always - perhaps unconsciously - pushing you own particular agenda and therefore not truly open to the merits of my own approach.

Criticism is more effective when the other - even when disagreeing - can reflect back one's views. Conrad, I do not get this sense when reading your contribution. Rather you deal with my post in a selective and diffuse way, using it primarily as a means of diverting attention to the issues closest to your own heart.

To be honest I find your continued "difficulty" with my use of the terms "physical" and "psychological" to be very unconvincing and indeed a red herring. It really has nothing to do with my essential position.

You have to understand that my approach is based on the - extremely important - intuition that all mathematical symbols have a holistic (qualitative) as well as analytical (quantitative) significance. Furthermore, what is truly remarkable is that reality at all levels can be precisely structured in this mathematical fashion.

We start with the realisation that reality is conditioned by polar opposites.

In horizontal terms these are variously referred to as object-subject, external-internal, exterior-interior (as in Ken's approach to holons), outer-inner etc. Now in holistic mathematical terms, I would say simply positive-negative. (This is fully inclusive of all the other formulations).

In vertical terms these polar opposites can be variously referred to as higher-lower, super-sub, collective-individual (as in Ken's approach), qualitative-quantitative, whole-part etc.

Now once more these in (holistic) mathematical terms are simply positive-negative polarities. Thus, though the other - more concrete - terms tend to carry either horizontal or vertical connotations, the positive-negative definition can apply to either.

Finally we can take these opposites in a diagonal direction. These combine horizontal and vertical opposites and are very cumbersome to express in concrete terms. For example along one diagonal we could refer to the external and higher, internal and lower polarities (Along the other we would have the external and lower, internal and higher polarities). These could be expressed mathematically as the ++ , -- and + - , - + polarities.

We then could translate the horizontal, vertical and diagonal axes - as in conventional mathematics - into real, imaginary and complex format respectively (in holistic qualitative terms).

So we now can express reality (in holistic mathematical) terms as sets of polarities with real, imaginary and complex interpretations. Finally these polarities themselves can be interpreted as holistic numbers. We could even get rid of the word "reality" and refer to it as a (holistic) set.

So now we have "reality" as a holistic set that can be fully expressed in terms of real, imaginary and complex numbers (which have a dynamic qualitative interpretation).

These creative insights have enabled me to look at "reality" in a completely new and meaningful fashion. I have translated the (entire) psychological spectrum in holistic mathematical fashion (identifying several stages that are not included on others). In the light of this and further amazing discoveries, I find your dire warnings of "fundamental errors" as empty and hollow. You seem reluctant to appreciate the creative nature of the insight that lies behind these life enhancing ideas.

So it is the full appreciation of this abstract (holistic) mathematical interpretation of reality that carries most translative power.

However we then must get back to dealing with reality in more concrete terms.

Now - as I have stated - my preferred abstract choice for labelling (opposite) polarities - in each direction is in terms of positive and negative.

I also use physical and psychological (at a more concrete level) as I have found no other pairing so suggestive or useful. Whereas other labels (such as external-internal and higher-lower), carry either horizontal or vertical meanings, physical-psychological can equally apply at horizontal, vertical and diagonal levels.

I think it is foolish to deny the great value of a labelling system that is so frequently used.

Now the essence of dualistic understanding is that opposite poles are interpreted as being clearly separate; the essence of (existential) experience is that opposite poles are related and cannot be fully separated.

It is of course not tenable to maintain the (complete) separation of physical and psychological poles at a dynamic experiential level. So their interactions leads to all types of interrelationships which can be examined in different ways. Quantum physics for example clearly points to the inadequacy of clear separation of physical and psychological meaning; you mention brain-wave research; and there are others.

However the essence of the dualistic interpretation - as opposed to the experiential reality - is that these two poles can be separated. Such an interpretation of reality is of course always distorted and - in experiential terms - a misinterpretation.

Now scientific method - as we know it - is based on such dualistic interpretation. Its clearest expression is in terms of physics itself which literally views the (psychological) observer as separate from observed (physical) reality.

Now even at this level - in dynamic experiential terms - this clear separation is unwarranted. However once again the essence of the dualistic interpretation is that it is indeed made.

This scientific paradigm has been extended well beyond physics (as a distinct discipline). Indeed I am very familiar with its use in economics.

Clearly economic reality involves a highly complex interaction of physical and psychological poles. However once again the essence of dualistic interpretation is to treat this reality simply as an extension of the physical environment. Insofar as this scientific approach is maintained economic reality is interpreted as an extended physical environment. Thus economists still go about their discipline being "value free" and physical notions such as "mechanism" and "equilibrium" still hold a central place.

One can even attempt to understand psychology itself - as in behavioural psychology - as part of this extended physical environment. So we have this tendency to separate the psyche from that which is investigated (which is interpreted as a physical environment).

I am deeply aware of the fuzzy nature of "physical" and "psychological" in any dynamic experiential context. However the dualistic interpretation - by definition - involves a rigid distinction.

Quite simply Conrad you fail to distinguish clearly experiential reality from this dualistic interpretation.

I have my own distinctive (holistic mathematical) way of dealing with subsequent interactions but that is another matter. My point here is simply to reaffirm that in terms of dualistic interpretation - it is fully valid to label "physical" and "psychological" as distinct poles.

Let me now dispose of another misconception. You seem to have made the assumption that because you have found my post abstract that somehow it is not rooted in concrete experience.

Again I believe this is unwarranted. I would describe myself - if pushed - as an existentialist. Everything I write about is rooted deeply in personal experience. Indeed all the key insights of Holistic Mathematics occurred spontaneously as the most natural way of interpreting my experience of reality.

If you read "Transforming Voyage" - which is a personal account of the spiritual journey - you will see how the mathematics follows naturally from experience (I encourage you to look at it).

There is considerable irony in that fact that it was the very "vagueness" of Eastern spiritual categories - such as you espouse with Adidam - that led me in search of a more precise manner of interpreting "higher-level" experience.

I fully appreciate that you find your membership very meaningful and it clearly provides you with an appropriate contextual culture with which to interpret experience.

However you must equally appreciate that in terms of Holistic Mathematics, I would not find its interpretations of much value. This is simply to state that I see reality from a differing perspective. I would not consider therefore the context that you are using to judge my work as an appropriate one. You need to be also able to appreciate the work from my particular context.

Again I invite you to read "Transforming Voyage". I assure you that it will give a very different perspective on the nature of spiritual development from that with which you are accustomed.

Also you advise me on what I need to do to win approval from others on the Forum.

As the opinions of participants differ widely I suggest that we let the others speak for themselves (I have in fact been greatly encouraged by some supportive responses recently).

You also include Ken Wilber in your advice. I have great respect for Ken but am not in awe of him. Though Ken is an "expert" in many fields, this does not apply to Holistic Mathematics. This is a field where he has yet perhaps a lot to learn. I have written to him personally and I presume he is briefed on the Forum's development.

Holistic Mathematics has considerable potential implications for Ken's work. I really see it as a test of his openness as to whether he is willing to give it the attention that it warrants.




PS The address of Holistic Mathematics