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A Question of Colors

Last post 07-31-2007, 5:00 AM by Markaaa. 43 replies.
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  •  07-02-2007, 10:35 PM 25160

    A Question of Colors

    Hello Integral Cyber World...

    I'm a newbie to the Integral world and truly loving everything about it and all of Ken's work,writings and philosophies.  I have practiced Zen for many years off and on, and off and now on again.  Discovering Integral was truly a blessing, as it came at the perfect time (if the student is ready the teacher will appear) and has broadened my whole perspective on everything form spirituality to my eveyday world. I have listened to Kosmic Consciousness many times already, I have the ILP kit and am reading Integral Spirituality and a few other of Ken's books, watching videos and listening to audio online at II, and taking in as much as my brain and Psyche can handle.  My question is pretty basic.  Everyone in Integral speaks and communicates in "Colors", Amber, Green, Blue, Orange, Teal etc. etc. like everyone knows exactly what they mean and the associated behaviors and points of view in those colored worlds.  I have gathered a basic understanding, but where do I find the both the finer details and a broder description about the colors and what the mean as far as levels of development?  I know Ken talks a lot about Spiral Dynamics, is this the primary source of the colors and their meaning?  I have seen the charts in ILP and have downloaded the Altitude chart online, but is there another source to read or study? 

    Thanks for your help.

    Lee

     

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  •  07-03-2007, 11:06 AM 25181 in reply to 25160

    Re: A Question of Colors

    Bonjour Lee,

    It’s nice to welcome new people here.  I hope you’ll appreciate your time, sharing with us. The world of colours? Some people here have a better understanding of colours than myself and probably they’ll come to inform you.  I personnally went to Spiral Dynamic’s level 1 and 2 with Don Beck and use his book “Spiral Dynamics” written with Christopher Cowan.  The exercice I did with Marilyn Hamilton during the session analyzing the differences between Canada’s provinces helped me a lot.  Just like people, the countries (and provinces in our case) have different levels of development on different lines (health, politics, sports, etc.)  Lately, the listening of Susan Cook-Greuter on levels of ego development helped me a lot to bring some precisions in my understanding. Ken Wilber talked also of the ability in levels of perspective taking, something linked with the development. 

    I believe it’s useful to speak in relation with colours but we have to be careful using it.  Useful cause it gives us a better understanding of who we are and how we act.  Knowing it, we can act, or at least, trying to act differently.  We may have better interactions with others and a better perspective on our whole world. I use colours personnally to practice them or more specifically to practice a better analyze or perception in interaction with others. 

    We also have to be careful with that cause we (I) tend to tag others and also ourselves at levels, identifying our Self and other’s Self at one colour. We are in fact multicolored, just like the Life is, isn’t it?

    Hope to read you soon, Lee. 

    Martine

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  •  07-03-2007, 3:05 PM 25196 in reply to 25160

    Re: A Question of Colors

    The colors are a convienent method of indicating relative position in the holarchy of development. Spiral Dynamics, which looks at the development of values in individuals and cultures, is just one system that uses colors. But there have been others, one notable one is the chakra system. For a while Wilber was using the same color scheme as SD, but he has since changed to the rainbow. This makes sense TO ME for a number of reasons: it is ascetically pleasing; it ties the model to something that exists in manifest world, which itself is symbolic of the notion that we aren't just making this stuff up, development itself is real; it detaches the Integral model from any specific system such as SD; it forms a link to tradition (the chakra system uses the rainbow, as do other systems.)

    The book Integral Spirituality has a good discussion of colors and the levels of development

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  •  07-05-2007, 10:17 PM 25315 in reply to 25196

    Re: A Question of Colors

    green is the highest level in first tier .. before the gigantic leap into second tier consciousness

    green integrates without discerning wisdom .. but it also brings many gifts of freedom and liberty

     

     

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  •  07-06-2007, 10:23 AM 25341 in reply to 25181

    Re: A Question of Colors

    Hi Martine,

    Thanks for the reply.  I agree about colors and making blanket statements and catagorizing people as Colors, yes we are all many different colors in our different lines of development.  I still  have work to do in figuring out all the meanings, but I think I have some direction now.  FYI just got back from Canada (British Columbia) in Whistler,  beautiful country, really had a good time there.  And what color is that province?  Anyway thanks for the info. 

    Best to you,

    Lee

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  •  07-06-2007, 10:29 AM 25342 in reply to 25196

    Re: A Question of Colors

    Thanks for that info.  I need to finish reading Integral Spirituality, hopefully it will give me more in depth info. regarding colors.  I do have a bit more understanding of the chakra system, did Yoga for many years and formally dated a wholistic MD who focused on the chakra system a lot.

    Thanks for the info.

    Lee

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  •  07-06-2007, 4:25 PM 25364 in reply to 25342

    • Markaaa is not online. Last active: 08-24-2007, 10:41 PM Markaaa
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    Re: A Question of Colors

    Hi Lee,

    I too am new to all of this and have read much of Ken's work, and looked at SD, but I have always had a problem with what I call "the hierarchy of elements". This is where we (as humans) classify stages or development through some upward projections, which immediately builds a system which is - some people (or countries) are at the top and some are at the bottom (like a league table). Is this not what sociology call "the iron law of Oligarchy", which is about how the system produces a form of those in control and at higher levels.

    I guess I am a sceptic in regard to much of this, as I don't think it represents how it really is. However, having said that, it is a system of classification which does help us understand others and for that it seems ok, but for what reason do we wish to understand others?

    That is the question I would ask. If you take Ken's theories at their word then anybody can reach any state from any stage, then why have a system which makes us "judge" other people and not allow them to reach any of the states at any time?

    Just a few thoughts.

    Regards

    Mark

     

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  •  07-07-2007, 10:09 AM 25393 in reply to 25364

    Re: A Question of Colors

    Lee, Mark and all, glad to speak to you today,

    Just life fairyfaye said there is a gigantic leap in second tier consciousness, the wisdom to see the importance and the beauty of each level of consciousness in our world. WE are growing together. Each level pushing the other.  So, no one is better than the others but some with a larger perspective.

    I understand very well your point Mark, that is a dark side of this system: the danger to judge.  But there is a difference between to see something and to judge.  The first one doesn’t link necessarily to the second. I’m not sure I well understood your point:

     If you take Ken's theories at their word then anybody can reach any state from any stage, then why have a system which makes us "judge" other people and not allow them to reach any of the states at any time?

    But it is possible to reach different stages, individually and collectively.  Our present world’s society is all the same different than the, say, Middle Ages’ one.  It’s the same for the infant to the adult.  The ILP is about the ability to transform ourself and push oneself toward a higher level of conciousness.  Or it could be simply to change one unhealthy line of development for an healthy one.   It can be applied individually and collectivelly. 

    When I did this exercice with Don Beck and Marilyn Hamilton, I saw something that I had never been conscious before even if I lived in this place all my life.  We are at different levels of conciousness in different lines of our activities,  green tending toward yellow in health care but really lower in another line, the political identity, maybe red at this time.  This consciousness changed totally my view and my actions cause I saw how we, as community, hurt ourselves struggling for our identity.  Things are better now and we, as society, quit the red level associated at this line.  We are caring our blue level now to change it for an healthy blue.  Doing that, we are able to have a healthier center of gravity level.  Our orange level is not too bad and healthy.  I thing we are at a green level, almost totally healthy now, preparing us to the big step. 

    More we will be conscious of the potential of this kind of reading, more we will be able to make the better decisions for our world.  It is the same for ourself.  Having an unhealthy line of development can make a big difference on our ability to reach a different center of gravity.  I believe it can bring a light on our world, taken individually or Kosmoslly.

    About the difference between to see and to judge, could we say it is to make of an object a subject? 

    Martine

     

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  •  07-07-2007, 3:25 PM 25400 in reply to 25393

    • Markaaa is not online. Last active: 08-24-2007, 10:41 PM Markaaa
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    Re: A Question of Colors

    Martine,

    Understand what you mean, but is not judgement an element of different colours or memes of the dynamics? In other words, at different colours people who use the "colour system", say orange or blue, will (as a matter of their level of consciousness) judge? At other colours, then perhaps the subjectivity becomes objectivity. Now, if 70% of the world uses say organge or below (mainly red amd blue - according to Wilber), then how do we avoid the subjectivity that leads to judgementivity (sorry about the use of new words, but it fits in this case).

    Where I am coming from is more in line with the Gebser, Combs, etc, where we are currently in the mental state of consciousness (ego state), having progressed from the archaric, magical and mythical and hopefully headed to the integral (although the earlier stages are ever present). This relates to your comment about:

    "present world’s society is all the same different than the, say, Middle Ages’ one".

    So, if much of the world still at, say the mythical level, and yet to develop through the mental and to the integral, then we have a long way to go. I wonder if we have the time for all of this to happen. When I say time, I mean, can we do what you have said:

    "Things are better now and we, as society, quit the red level associated at this line.  We are caring our blue level now to change it for an healthy blue.  Doing that, we are able to have a healthier center of gravity level.  Our orange level is not too bad and healthy.  I thing we are at a green level, almost totally healthy now, preparing us to the big step."

    in time to allow all of us (humans that is), to progress to the higher levels and still have the earth in one piece? Not sure of the answer or if there is an answer.

    Just to follow another line on all of this. I often wander if the systems we create, actually create the system? In other words we may identify an element in life (as Graves, Beck and Cowan did) and by then developing a system (more of a model) which helps explain it (SD), then does the original system take this and progress even more so in that direction. It becomes a self-fullfiling prophecy, as the system absorbs it and makes it its own and then heads even more so in that direction?

    So the more we talk about colours, and levels and all of SD, the more the system actual moves to this and includes it and becomes like it. Is this a process of autopoiesis, a form of self creation? Is there anything separate from what we self create (as individuals or collectively)? Much work on this has been done by Allan Combs and he has worked with Wilber as well. A point to ponder.

    Martine, to come back to your last point of being about to see as opposed to judge, I guess the problem I have with this is just what we see with? If our consciousness is itself "self created" then reaching higher levels means different forms of "self creation", which places one in a different "space" rather than a different level. Again, this is a different way of "seeing things", and how much of this influences what we see is of conjecture.

    This might all seem rather circular, and perhaps it is meant to be like that, rather than levels.

    Finally, as for healthy versus unhealthy development - I am not sure if there is one or the other, as in our current mental stage of consciousness, I don't think we can see what is healthy and what is not, therefore we go from space to space thinking we are getting healthy, only to find out afterwards, it didn't work out.

    Martine, thanks for your comments and hopefully the above will give more food for thought and would be happy to hear more about the colours (as you will be able to see from the spelling I am not from the US).

    Regards

    Mark    

    PS - I will think more on some of your points and respond later, but this is my first "cut", so please be kind.

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  •  07-08-2007, 7:36 AM 25428 in reply to 25400

    Re: A Question of Colors

    It was a real pleasure to read you Mark.  I like very much the state where this kind of questionning brings me.

    then how do we avoid the subjectivity that leads to judgementivity

     

    How???  What a good question! If I could applied the answer, how I’d feel better.  So, if you find one for me, I’ll appreciate a lot Big Smile [:D]  We could starting to find one together, couldn’t we?  I read somewhere that Don Beck used, obviously, the SD system (color system on values) in South Africa with the result we know.  At first, I tought he used it externally for the objective analyze.  I saw he used it with the people implied, so they worked together not with colours of the skin but colours of their values.  And it worked cause something external was more irritating than the colour of their values.  I’m sure that Don would say that is works also in other countries where the colour of the skin is not the major problem but I don’t have the necessary informations to speak of. But where the people have the cognitive capacity to understand the colour system which is concording with works of different important researchers so with a great scientific value, it could be helping to be more known and used.  When you are at, say, orange level, and you become conscious you act at red level, it is a shock.  Everyone prefers to go upward. It’s not just a matter of feeling or well-being, it is a matter of efficacity. 

     

    The first part of the answer would be to increase the understanding of the system. I wonder if the statistics we have about the 70% orange or below in the world are based on the cognitive capacity.   I have a doubt on that.  It is a thing to know something and another to act. 

     

    More I use this system of colours, more I have difficulty to “stage” someone at one colour.  I agree to say the stage would be the higher level of conciousness of one person but the use of different stages is very flexible.  It is variable in accordance with the different lines of development, with the different people (and their own levels) we are in interaction, with the different events in our life (starvation, war, win at lotto) that are linked also with the need line.  

     

    When I say time, I mean, can we do what you have said…in time to allow all of us (humans that is), to progress to the higher levels and still have the earth in one piece?

    I find that is going very fast at contrary.  The new emerging countries as developed country as we say are really populous and count for a large part of the humanity.  Lately, I heard Genpo Roshi and Ken spoke together about the fact that for them and a lot of others in the past, it took a lot of time to reach a certain stage in meditation whereas now, it is a lot faster to attain the same level.  Great!  What couldn’t it be the same with levels of conciousness?

    In other words we may identify an element in life (as Graves, Beck and Cowan did) and by then developing a system (more of a model) which helps explain it (SD), then does the original system take this and progress even more so in that direction. It becomes a self-fullfiling prophecy, as the system absorbs it and makes it its own and then heads even more so in that direction?

    …Is this a process of autopoiesis, a form of self creation?

    In my way of thinking,  those systems are from the amber (blue) level.  A kind of authority and stability necessary to be able to support the pressure to be free. And this freedom is expressed in the autopoiesis as you say.  I don’t know the Combs’ work.  I should as it seems.  Ken said often that is model is the one right now.  He keeps it very open as I feel it. Understand well that is the models being in the blue level not the thoughts in the model. 

    If our consciousness is itself "self created" then reaching higher levels means different forms of "self creation", which places one in a different "space" rather than a different level. Again, this is a different way of "seeing things", and how much of this influences what we see is of conjecture.

    This might all seem rather circular, and perhaps it is meant to be like that, rather than levels.

    I appreciate a lot the level system cause it gives me conscious where I AM is.  I’m more able to travel in the levels.  But I like also your idea of space that is different.  When we are WITH someone for exemple, when we are a WE, it’s like a bubble, a space of our own. We create in this space something just for us, with our own rules. Lately,  Ralph (maybe few others also) and we spoke of the political blue level, one from the United States, the other from Canada.  And I wonder if that his view of the Blue level was the same than mine.  Cause the reality of both countries are really different.  I found a note on that in Theory of Everything (p.149 in Notes) where he says when a green adult activates a purple meme, that is not the identical meme the 2-year-old child possesses. For the latter it is the basis of the infant’s central identity, it’s proximate self (I) , whereas for the green adult, it is a part of distal self (me). He says a lot more but you’ll have to read it directly.  More we have the distance with the level, we may think or act at the level but not in the same way than when we closely link to this level.  

    …therefore we go from space to space thinking we are getting healthy, only to find out afterwards, it didn't work out.

    According to our models and for the society we are with, we have the definitions to know it.  To follow the exemple of the place where I live, I can see objectivily the progress in the well-being of people.  When the societal atmosphere moves from red to green, you see the difference.   On a personal point of view, in a relationship for exemple, you can note an unhealthy development, try to work on it, but as you are not alone in that, you have to follow the rhythm of the other also.  As there is an affective dimension which is also a part of the relationship,  we have not the possibility to simply quit the difficulties.  We just can show this affectivity in the way they ask for.  The relational functionning seems becoming a system of its own with the same patterns reoccuring.   It doesn’t mean that each one or one of them  is not becoming healthier in the process but the relationship perhaps is not.  Not in this way. At a certain time, I concluded that we were not viewing at this bubble in the same way. Cause our background is different,  our combination of different levels of conciousness on our different lines is different, all our own specificity.    If we take the specifities of two or more people, it’s a unique space.  We have to function with all those components.  Ideally, we may work more efficiently if we know where we come from and how we are functionning for the self creation.  If we work together rather than each one on his own.  It’s all  the integral relationship’s thread subject.  How can we make evolve a relationship vertically, not only horizontally?  And better again, how to not walk round and round?

    Martine

     

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  •  07-09-2007, 3:38 AM 25464 in reply to 25428

    • Markaaa is not online. Last active: 08-24-2007, 10:41 PM Markaaa
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    Re: A Question of Colors

    Martine, thank you for your response and it is evident that much of this goes round inside of you as well, as we not only ask questions of each other, but also of ourselves. It was also a pleasure to read you (it is an interesting way of putting it).

    Before I look at each part of your thoughts (if I may call them that), I guess the reason I am questioning the colours is that at the moment I exist in a space which may see the colours, but ignores them in a special way. I am working on what I call the ME/WE principle, which as far as I know hasn't been articulated in the following way before, by anybody. The more I use this principle, the more some rather strange things have been happening (perhaps we could call it magic?). The ME/WE principle goes as follows:

    ME

    WE

    There are three points to the words ME and WE. The first is that WE is merely ME with the first letter turned upside down. Secondly, the M in ME is inward looking and closed off to anything above. The W, on the other hand is outward looking, with its 'arms' open to the heavens (so to speak). The third point is that while WE is merely ME with the first letter turned upside down, with one looking inwards and the other looking outwards, the letter E is constant, it does not chamge.

    So, what can one make of this. Well, if you want to change from being ME to WE then you have to turn your attention to the outside and be open and not closed, but at the same time you are still YOU, represented by the E.

    How does this work in practice? When I am with someone, I consider us (the two or more) to be WE and not ME. Therefore, I listen with the WE and do not allow anything that happens when being with the WE to bring me back to ME. This is not easy and it takes a lot of practice, but you have to place yourself in a 'space' (as I referred to before), where you do this.

    Now, some strange things happen when I do this. When I am with somebody who is Orange, Red or even Purple or Blue, I recognise this, but then have to let go of it, as ME becomes WE, and those people become ME. They no longer are Orange or Red, or any colour. People who have said to me they have no interest in higher states, or spirituality, etc, are all of sudden talking to me about this and become deeply interested. This has been going on for nearly a year now and it has become rather incredible.

    I go somehwere, meet someone, we get talking, I move to the WE space and in no time they want to know more about spirituality, etc, and we engage in what you would call deep and meaningful talk.

    Therefore, where I seem to be coming from is a place where the colours don't mean anything when engaging as a WE. If we stay as a ME, then perhaps the colours do resonate and do mean something and it is how people act. This is a question, I suppose, rather than a statement.

    Hopefully this will give you some background as to how I see spaces and therefore wonder about colours, but in the end they mean nothing. Is all of this another version of reaching different states from different stages? not sure.

    The above might give you an idea about finding an answer to the question of -

    then how do we avoid the subjectivity that leads to judgementivity

    I often have to 'pull' myself up on this and make myself be present and become WE, as when I am in this state there is no judgement, there is no reason to judge, you just listen and be WE. Happy to get your feedback on this, as you said - WE could get this answer together.

    I am aware of the work that Beck did in South Africa, and this was a way forward for a community of people who had been 'bottled up' for so long.

    As for Blue countries, I am not sure how this fits into what I referred to earlier as Gebser's work on the different states of conscsiousness and whether we refer to those countries which are Blue as those who sit between the Mythical and the Mental states? Not sure, but I take your point. The question is, how do we progress this in terms of accelarated movement, as you mention. The way to move forward quickly might be to get a leader who is WE, rather than ME?

    Some of the system 'stuff' I refer to probably aligns more to what David Bohm wrote about when he was alive, and the way that systems tend to self-regulate and come to some type of equilibrium, and even if the system has major flaws in it, it still operates at a stable level. He suggests that thought is such a system, which has a major flaw and therefore we need to move outside the system to explore more about thought and to perhaps correct the flaw. He is interesting reading.

    Now, when you talk about the bubble or the relational functioning, this takes me back to the ME/WE principle and that this is one method which can create the bubble and relational functioning in a form which may be able to transcend the levels, the colours, etc, and take us away from our mental constructions to a place where we are really meant to be.

    I am not so sure and there is much more to ponder.

    Regards

    Mark

    PS - If you like the ME/WE principle, then pass it onto as many people as you can, but if you don't like it, perhaps try it and see if it works for you. Also, as we are opposite sides of the world, I guess there will be some time between our postings?

      

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  •  07-10-2007, 6:36 PM 25538 in reply to 25464

    Re: A Question of Colors

    So, WE found you're gifted for Love.
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  •  07-11-2007, 4:26 AM 25562 in reply to 25538

    • Markaaa is not online. Last active: 08-24-2007, 10:41 PM Markaaa
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    Re: A Question of Colors

    Perhaps that is all WE are ever meant to be?  For when one becomes WE there is no where else to go?
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  •  07-11-2007, 6:56 PM 25608 in reply to 25562

    Re: A Question of Colors

    Martine and Mark: What a wonderful WE space here! I am imagining talking with the two of you in a winter lodge around a big fireplace. So much love!

    Yes, the ranking of colors can be harmful when applied to people dogmatically by egos run amok. Yes, it's a beautiful system that we can use to better understand ourselves and the world.

    Love!


    To be nobody-but-yourself -- in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else -- means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. - E.E.Cummings
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  •  07-12-2007, 3:32 AM 25628 in reply to 25608

    • Markaaa is not online. Last active: 08-24-2007, 10:41 PM Markaaa
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    Re: A Question of Colors

    Martine and Colin,

    Martine, your response had me thinking just how to respond (and Colin you followed on with it) and it interests me that you have both gone to the word Love, and like most people I have looked at this from many different points or angles, like what is meant by Love, what does it look like, etc, etc, etc. What I can see at the moment (that viewing place, where I currently reside) I think Love and Truth go hand in hand. This is how I place each of them together.

    "The values that underpin the ability to act within a moment (these values are created within their own right and not dependent upon a set of social values) are only two in form.        

    The first is Love. Love is defined as – Acting and caring with absolutely no consideration of oneself at all, in any way (pure altruism). This does not form the basis of what is know as “human love”, which is the type of love dependent upon reinforcing the needs of one individual by satisfying the needs of another, in order for that satisfaction to be returned.

     

    The second independent value is Truth. Truth is defined as  - That which is created within a moment that supports the actions involving Love.

     

    With these two values (which all humans are born with), then any moment can be navigated in such a way that does not rely upon the past, nor allows a passive response to a moment or situation. The actions of Love and Truth are required to exist within a moment for a creation to be made that has a place in the moment without relying upon what has gone previously".

    This is excert from a recent paper titled - Navigating the Future, where I explore in what way we should navigate the future.

    Wrote it a wjile ago, so not sure if it still holds?

    When you speak of Love this is what it means to me (coupled with Truth).

    Might sound simple, but perhaps it is or perhaps it is not.

    Not sure.

    More to ponder.

    Mark

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