Integral Politics: The need for and purpose of an Integral Government – Part III

by editor

This is a continuation of the previous posts on “Integral Politics: The need for and purpose of an Integral Government” Part I and Part II, which has been inspired from Henry Augustine’s “Integral Politics: An Introduction to the Integral Government”. In the Part I and II of the article, we discussed on the need for an Integral Government, based on the problems with the current rational-legal set up.  Augustine’s arguments on why a rational-legal government with Orange and Green view leaders will fail to face global issues and why it is crucial to have a world-government with several world-states. This article will discuss on how the structure of such a world-government should be and who should head such a government.

Integral Government: To quote the words of Richard von Weizäcker, the President of West Germany, “Experience teaches that it is not disarmament that points the way to peace, but rather that peaceful relations open the door to disarmament. Peace is the consequence of practical cooperation.” It is practical cooperation that is the need of the hour. But a “practical cooperation” cannot be achieved unless all the nations in the world are on the same level of consciousness, with leaders who can seek solutions upon considering all levels and all quadrants. To achieve such an integral political level, governance should be in the hands of good leaders. Augustine deals in depth about Integral leadership in his essay, explaining a leader’s qualities, cognitive and perceptive abilities etc. Let us take a peek into who is fit to be an Integral leader and what is his/her role in an Integral government.

Integral Leader versus Politician:
In the Integral world, only “leaders” not “politicians” should govern. There is a sea of difference who is a leader and who is a politician. Politicians are those who generally adopt to and act by a kind of “rational-egoism” or what can be termed as Machiavellian tendency to rule. They have the tendency to be “cunning” and “ruthless” (pertaining to the “rational” and “egoism” of philosophy). Since rational-egoism is not leadership, an Integral world should be free of any kind of politician. But what are the differences between a leader and a politician? Augustine lists out a few: A leader is truly altruistic, whereas the politician is altruistic only for his sake. A leader thinks in holistic terms, while a politician is stuck to linear line of thought. A leader empathizes and has the will, compassion, and insight that any saint or holy soul like Jesus, Mother Theresa or Martin Luther King may have. Whereas, a politician is self-centric, focused on his good or position and is able not to motivate but only pacify others. So, leaders are a way ahead of politicians, and the Integral universe would require true leaders, not “rational-egoistic” politicians clinging on to the rational-legal model of government.

Integral Leader Persona:
Now that we are certain that the Integral evolution can happen only with leaders, how should the leaders be? What should be their persona? In other words, qualities and character? Augustine goes on to explain that too. “Leaders, comprising the Integral government, will exemplify the most overall merit of anyone.” That is, they would be the most developed and holistic of human beings, mostly centered in the Turquoise realm, in moral, cognitive, creative aspects as well as intrapersonally, sociably and communicatively.

It is important that an Integral leader demonstrates Turquoise morality, as opposed to Orange or Green morality. It is essential to have a worldcentric view, in fact, a multiworldcentric view. By multiworldcentric view, Augustine means a view which encompasses and cares not just for all humanity, but also for all of the Earth.

Creativity: Creativity is what differentiates a leader from others and is imperative for change or novelty in the government. As Peirce points out, evolution cannot happen without three metaphysical-physical forces – chance, necessity and creativity. Augustine opines that all these three are necessary and of all the most important is creativity. An Integral leader should demonstrate, according to him, creativity of the Turquoise kind.

Cognitivity: Followed by morality and creativity is cognitivity, which is nothing but the perception of reality as things are. Just like it befits Orange morality and Orange creativity to go with Orange cognitivity, similarly, Turquoise morality and creativity should accompany Turquoise cognitivity.

Other qualities: However, all these qualities are not sufficient and should be accompanied by other characteristics like sociability, intrapersonal intelligence and communicative abilities. Intrapersonal intelligence can mean the presence of both spiritual and emotional wisdom and that can be a credit to the world as only such comprehensive intelligence can tackle global issues in the right way. Intrapersonal intelligence also means the non-presence of rational-egoism and the presence of a worldcentric view. With regard to sociability and communicative abilities, both are interlinked and one cannot exist without the other. Both these are required for a leader even in this rational-legal model and hence is mandatory in the evolving Integral model too. So, adept with all Turquoise line of thought, an Integral leader should be a  leap ahead from the current world politician.

How to identify Integral leaders? Given that many people have some measure of all these abilities, how do we identify them? Is there a rational test like the IQ test that can testify who are eligible for Integral leadership and who are not? Augustine is with Ken Wilber in this issue: “I don’t believe that any human mind is capable of 100 percent error. So instead of asking which approach is right and which is wrong, we assume each approach is true but partial, and then try to figure out how to fit these partial truths together, how to integrate them–not how to pick one and get rid of the others (-Ken Wilber in the foreword to The Eye of Spirit).”

He insists testing the leaders-to-be in multiple ways – both subjective and objective ways. For instance, in order to test the morality of a person, he proposes threefold methods. The first of these tests should be to direct a series of questions to the individual and analyze his responses in both subjective (truthfulness of being) and objective (subtle implications of his answers) ways. The second method should be a more objective analysis of the individual’s resume, life, previous records etc. The third method should be a discussion testing the morality of the person through questions on what is Goodness and why is it important etc. Though these methods sound good enough to judge an individual’s morality, question maybe raised of the intelligence of the testers. Augustine opines that people of the Orange view are fit enough for this job as they can recognize things with objectivity and can justify leaders to be selected. We need to take into account the Integral knowledge of the leaders and based on the scores, leaders should occupy positions – the individual with highest score going to the top governmental positions.

World-government and world-states: Before selecting a leader, one needs to determine to which level of government he/she fits into. Augustine views the Integral Government to comprise of the following (in hierarchy) – world-government, world-state, nation-state, state, county, town/city and community. He opines there should be six more world-states along with European Union. And these world-states should be divided into nation-states, then into states, county, towns and finally communities which should not comprise more than 100 people. Also, in Augustine’s view, all the four quadrants of each community or each level of government should be handled separately. For instance, all levels of Integral government should consist of “the Department of Individual Subjective Affairs, the Department of Collective Subjective Affairs, the Department of Collective Objective Affairs, and the Department of Individual Objective Affairs.”

In brief, Augustine seems to indicate that the basic framework of an Integral government will be a leader who is Integrally informed and is centered in the Turquoise morally, creatively and cognitively, and has the ability to lead with a holistic ethicism and multiworldcentricism. Given the birth and evolution of Integral thought, or at least the need for a “Third Way” worldwide, it can be said that it would take only years to take such a government to be implemented. As Jean Gebser puts it in his The Ever-Present Origin (1953), “Epochs of great confusion and general uncertainty in a given world contain the slumbering, not-yet-manifest seeds of clarity and certainty. The manifestations of the aperspectival world… show that these seeds are already pressing toward realization. This means that we are approaching the “zenith” of confusion and are thus nearing the necessary breakthrough.”

Reference Links:

1. Integral Politics: The Need for and purpose of an Integral Government

2. Integral Politics: The Need for and purpose of an Integral Government – Part II

3. Integral Politics: An Introduction to Integral Government by Henry Augustine

4. Integral Politics: An introduction to Integral Economy by Henry Augustine

5. Henry Augustine’s Integral Politics: A Brief Outline of and Introduction to the Integral Era

6. Greg Wilpert: Dimensions of Integral Politics

7. Ken Wilber: Some Thoughts on Integral Politics

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