Beyond Race and Racism: An Integral Approach  
Mark Palmer
Mark Palmer, the Program Coordinator at Integral Institute, engages in what we believe is one of the most important dialogues ever carried on Integral Naked.

The topic in general is the nature of self-identity and its relation to spirituality. Mark and Ken discuss the developmental unfolding of self-identity from egocentric to ethnocentric to worldcentric, and focus on the two major wings of that overall movement, stressing how important both of them are. The first is the incredibly significant move from egocentric to ethnocentric, where one can find an identity and social solidarity with others of one’s group—whether African-American, gay, lesbian, female, physically challenged, and so on. Moving from egocentric and preconventional to ethnocentric and conventional is what identity politics is all about, and, on balance, is a very positive move.

But the second step is even more important: having found an ethnocentric identity (and having given it all due respect and honor), how does one move beyond that ultimately limited identity in order to find a deeper, wider, higher identity with a worldcentric and all-encompassing Self and Spirit?

Mark: “What’s next? This black thing isn’t working out, so now what? All of these limited identities have the same dilemma: a moving away from, an avoidance. Whenever I identified with any of them, at the end of the day I only felt sadness.”

Ken: “You wanted an identity that didn’t stop short of infinity?”

Mark: “That’s exactly right. You get to the point where you can’t fool the Self. You just can’t do it. So you have to go beyond being a black man, being a this type of man, or even a human, and find that prior identity with ever-present awareness. It’s a fast slide to infinity.”

Mark points out that an integral approach to race and racism insists that factors in all the quadrants (e.g., intentional, behavioral, cultural, and socioeconomic) and all the levels (e.g., egocentric to ethnocentric to worldcentric) need to be addressed. But the one factor that virtually all the other approaches leave out is that of the intentional, interior, or consciousness dimension, where self-identity carries the ultimate secret to being set radically, infinitely free.

Want to find the real way out of being caught in race and racism? Then by all means, listen to this....
transmission time: 43 minutes
keywords: Wendy’s, Steubenville, Ohio, black studies, cultural studies, The Spectrum of Consciousness, ever-present awareness, quadrants, "What Is Integral?", egocentric/preconventional, ethnocentric/conventional, worldcentric/postconventional, Spiritual Materialism, identity politics, Malcolm X, Saul Williams, transcend and include black identity, Henry Louis Gates, neo-fascist battering ram, blue (mythic-membership, traditional, ethnocentric/conventional), orange (modern, rational-industrial, worldcentric/postconventional), turquoise (integral), "What Is Spiral Dynamics Integral?", A Theory of Everything.
most memorable moment: "What is salvation at one point becomes a new set of chains at the next. Freedom is found only by going beyond any partial identities...."

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