“Jesus said succinctly, “By their fruits ye shall know them.” If you want to know how people have progressed on the spiritual path, just watch them in the little interactions of everyday life. Are they patient? Cheerful? Sensitive to the needs of those around them? Are they free from compulsive likes and dislikes? Can they work harmoniously with others? If so, they are evolving, though they may have never had a vision or psychic experience…”
“But simply still, I simply cannot stand this criticism of simply anything, let alone “simply,” so simply suck my dick, whaddaya say?…I am long gone, dude, down the road, flying at the speed of thought, looking for yet more yummies to share with readers, and these painfully sluggish critics, dragging their bloated bellies across the ground at a snail’s pace of gray dreariness, can frankly just eat my dust and bite my ass…And even a bald bastard with ambition, I might add, instead of even being able to lay blame where it in fact belongs, which is on its own sorry-ass, first tier, lame-brain case of arrested development, a two-bit, no-fit, nobody-quoting, self-promoting, gas-floating, over-bloating, no-deposit, lame-composite, really lost it, never had it, wanna bees, felled at the knees, first-tier fleas, flick ‘em off his back and never look back…”
Many have criticized Ken Wilber. They’ve criticized his ideas. They’ve criticized his Integral Institute. And they’ve criticized the way he and his followers respond to this criticism. Yesterday, he replied to his critics, and the Integral world is abuzz. Some praise him for “compassionately” “combining the mind of a bodhisattva with the mouth of a gangsta rapper” and for letting his justifiable frustration loose on his clueless critics without putting on false and simpleminded airs of goodness. But most, I suspect, will find his reply mean-spirited, juvenile, petulant, “dismissive, conceited,” lacking in substance, and damaging to the Integral movement.
As for me, I offer no criticisms, only questions. If I were somehow able to scale the heights of integral practice and awareness that Wilber has, would I conduct myself the way Wilber did in his reply? Was THAT an “integrally informed,” psychologically mature, and spiritually advanced response? Did it successfully refute his critics, vindicate his ideas, advance the Integral cause, or truly benefit him or anyone else psychologically, spiritually, or in any other way?
Can anyone explain how it was or accomplished any of these things? If they can’t, does that mean they’re just not evolved enough? How would Jesus respond to criticism? Buddha? The Dalai Lama? Thich Nhat Hanh? Eknath Easwaran? Mother Teresa? Huston Smith? Are we wrong to hold up these people as role models, as spiritual exemplars? If not, how does Wilber’s conduct compare to theirs? What are we to think of his reply? More importantly, what kind of person do we aspire to be, and how should we try to fulfill that aspiration? By becoming more “integrally informed? By practicing the spiritual disciplines that Wilber practices or recommends? By becoming more like Ken Wilber?
If we feel disillusioned after reading Wilber’s reply, should we not?
MIB: Joe Davis, Vanguard’s Chief Economist - This week, we speak with Joseph H. Davis, Ph.D. He is Vanguard Group’s global chief economist and head of Vanguard Investment Strategy Group; he is also ...
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