Note 5 - Integral Inclusion

From an integral perspective the relationship between stages is complementary.
Therefore in vertical terms this entails that the "lowest" stage in development is complementary with the "highest" and the "highest" with the "lowest".

Therefore insofar as inclusion in other stages is concerned, in the most direct sense the "lowest" stage is included in the "highest" and the "highest" in the "lowest". Of course equally the "lowest" is dynamically excluded in the "highest" and the "highest" in the "lowest".

This is very much at variance with the asymmetric approach (suited to differentiation) where each stage is treated in a discrete sequential fashion and included in the next highest stage.

The clarification of these notions can throw considerable light on the inevitable limitations associated with normal growth.

With the earliest "prepersonal" stages there is considerable emphasis on differentiation in development, which culminates with the middle of the Spectrum. Thus the personal stages - which are neither prepersonal nor transpersonal - represent a peak in terms of such merely differentiated understanding (of which conventional scientific understanding represents an extreme example).

Though in dynamic terms therefore - though it is not strictly true to maintain that each lower stage is included in the corresponding higher stage - in early development it largely conforms (through reduced interpretation) to this pattern. However because this runs counter to the true dynamics of development, a significant price is inevitably paid in terms of repression.
Therefore typically by the middle (personal) stages, phenomena have assumed a largely independent phenomenal rigidity associated with a significant diminution in unconscious energy.
Indeed this explains very well why development rarely proceeds in a significant manner beyond the middle stages. Quite simply, unconscious dynamics have become so much tamed though the (merely) differentiated emphasis in development (with energy becoming converted into mass) that insufficient spiritual fuel remains - as it were - to propel one into the "higher" levels.

Thus the worldview of conventional science is so limited as it really represents the understanding of just one level. Because lower prepersonal stages are assumed to be contained in the specialised rational perspective (of science) they are no longer considered of relevance. Likewise because this rational worldview - by its nature - is unable to properly access higher levels, these are also seen as irrelevant. Thus a perspective - which really represents the limited understanding of just one level - in intellectual terms is imposed on all levels further distorting the true dynamics of experience.

Thus though it is quite appropriate that the earlier development is largely concerned with successful differentiation in experience, it is important to recognise that this is inevitably associated with significant repression of the unconscious energy which abounds - in necessarily confused fashion - at the prepersonal stages. Though of course a degree of integration take place at each stage, this is largely within a context where differentiated notions of meaning predominate. Thus for example in Western psychology the so-called body/mind integration of the centaur represents but a very pale reflection of the true body/mind integration associated with "higher" spiritual development.

Thus to put it bluntly, if the earlier prepersonal were to be successfully included in the middle personal stages, no further possibility of "higher" spiritual development would remain. In dynamic vertical terms "lower" is complementary with "higher" and "higher" is complementary with "lower". By definition the middle - which is neither "higher" nor "lower" therefore is complementary with neither.
Therefore fully successful inclusion in the middle stages leads to a situation where one's worldview becomes largely confined to this level (thereby restricting access to "higher" or "lower"). And as we have seen this is exactly what happens with conventional science, which is the supreme expression of this middle level. Because it continually reconfirms the paradigm of its own level, it greatly restricts access to other equally valid scientific perspectives, which are much more appropriate from an integral perspective.

So if were to properly understand development dynamics - thereby keeping open the possibility of access to the "higher" spiritual stages - we must balance the differentiated with the integral perspective.
Thus from one perspective the rational (middle) level is higher than the mythic level (representing a greater degree of clarity in terms of differentiated awareness).

However equally from another perspective, because the "lower" mythic is dynamically included in complementary fashion in the "higher" subtle (as its pure expression) we can say that the mythic level is potentially "higher" in dynamic integral terms than the rational.

In other words the mythic level - where unconscious energy is necessarily confused to a degree with conscious symbols - dynamically points to a complementary "higher" spiritual stage (where these problems can be reconciled).

However at the personal level (especially where the scientific worldview predominates) precious little spiritual vision may remain. Thus to maintain that a rational scientific is necessarily more advanced than a mythic society is dynamically untenable from an integral perspective.

Therefore with "higher" spiritual development - where the emphasis is primarily on integration - the focus switches very much from emphasis on inclusion to exclusion in development. In other words considerable dynamic negation of phenomena takes place at the "higher" stages which lessens the rigid attachments associated with the merely differentiated worldview. This of course entails the mature return to the prepersonal stages to successfully unravel all those elements necessarily repressed through earlier differentiation. And it requires the "highest" level of spiritual development to unearth the repression associated with the earliest stages.

Thus though the bodyself is the first to be differentiated in experience, proper integration of the bodyself with the Spirit can only occur in the final stage.