Introduction to AQAL

For most of our seminars, we offer an elective introductory session the day before, which covers the bases of integral theory for those who wish to be caught up with the most current version of the model before the seminar begins. These "Intro Days" are often led by our very own Clint Fuhs, making his debut appearance on Integral Naked.


As an intellectual model, AQAL is amazing: to simultaneously hold so many different truths in the palm of your hand, to see the poetry that dwells within paradox, to map all the staggering complexity of the world on a single piece of paper. But as amazing as the AQAL model truly is, learning the framework is just the first step towards really understanding it. AQAL is much more than just a map of the Kosmos; it is indeed the "territory of you." All of the basic ingredients of AQAL—quadrants, levels, lines, states, types—all of these are components of your experience right now, in this very moment. Thus, by learning the AQAL map we can more fully embrace the territory of this present moment, increasing our capacity to feel ourselves, to experience the world, and to love each other.
 Learning AQAL in the Service of Love ( 11:14 )
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If you were to randomly ask people the question: "what is the Kosmos fundamentally made of?," you would likely get a very wide variety of answers. One person might say it's made of atoms, quarks, or strings, while another might say energy, love, or consciousness. The next person might say "God" while another says "holons." However, perhaps the most adequate—and inclusive—response would be to say: the Kosmos is fundamentally made of perspectives. It is this emphasis upon perspectives which, perhaps more than anything else, makes the AQAL model so revolutionary, so comprehensive, and so universally applicable. In this clip, Clint leads us through a tour of the quadrants, exercising our ability to look through as many perspectives as are available to us.
 Quadrants: Looking Through ( 19:39 )
Broadband  |  Dialup  |  Download WMV  |  iTunes/iPod 6/25/2007
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In the previous clip, Clint took us through a tour of the Quadrants, which are the subjective, objective, intersubjective, and interobjective perspectives that comprise every sentient being, and through which sentient beings interface with the world.  However, another useful application of the Quadrants is to use them to look at a particular person, place, or thing—or any occasion at all—from each of these fundamental perspectives.  This is called Quadrivium.  For example, we can use Quadrivium to analyze a work of art: what does the artwork objectively look or sound like?  What techniques are employed by the artist?  What subjective response do you have to the artwork, and what do you think was going on inside the artist's head or heart when it was created?  What cultural significance does the artwork have?  What cultural signifiers does it use to communicate its message?  What were the political or economic realities in which the artwork was created?  What technologies made the artwork's creation possible in the first place?

 Quadrivium: Looking At ( 18:55 )
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Here we come to one of the most important (and for many of us, the most fun!) components of the AQAL model: states of consciousness.  This covers an extremely wide spectrum of human experience, including the major states of waking, dreaming, deep sleep, Witness, and Non-dual consciousness; our daily emotional states like love, fear, joy, and sorrow; altered states like being drunk, stoned, or hallucinating, as well as sublime states like samadhi or atonement. These many kinds of states are similar in that they can be experienced from any level of consciousness—though the tone and texture of the state, as well as its interpretation, could drastically differ according to one’s stage of development.

 An Introduction to States ( 19:31 )
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Here Clint offers a closer look at states of consciousness and how they factor into the integral model. This presentation runs through many different classifications of state experiences, including exogenous and endogenous states, physiological states, altered states, and even states as they appear in the lower-left and lower-right quadrants.

 Deeper Into States ( 14:51 )
Broadband  |  Dialup  |  Download WMV  |  iTunes/iPod 7/30/2007
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