Stepping through the world-view membrane
There is clearly a need for new ways of thinking in our increasingly complex world. We see many contradictions expressed in the daily news and hear dreams of a better life spoken in private conversations. New evidence suggests that we do have the capacity to successfully evolve into a new era, where we transcend the irrational inertia of human doing that keeps things the way they have been. It seems that we are pushing up against the membrane of what’s probable, which suggests that the change we are seeking has already happened in our psyche and we are simply learning to grow into it!
Once the province of philosophers, the subject of consciousness (awareness) is now at the intersection of science and spirituality. Research clearly allows us to observe the deep patterns of consciousness, left behind over the past 120,000 years and offers an optimistic view of our future as a viable species on a viable planet.
What is emerging?
As the world becomes more complex and as emergent coping means - known as integral consciousness - grow in response, we can expect to witness a new era being born, where every basic assumption about life on this planet will be subject to scrutiny. Here is what we anticipate becoming increasingly important:
- Elegant simplicity. Expect to come across more stories of people reassessing what is really important and true. We will see the pursuit of well-being, where less is more, through elegant simplicity.
- Multiple bottom lines. There will be a new unifying story of humankind’s role in this universe and the urgent need to take care of our only home, planet Earth. The focus will be on a long-term viable future for planet and species. Expect multiple bottom lines of planet, purpose, process, people, profit, trust, respect and the provision of basic needs to be adopted in all decision-making.
- Beneficial abundance. Anticipate the accelerated release of technology beneficial to all life, focused on the abundant, high-quality provision of basic needs such as food, water, air, energy and habitat. We have a long way to go to address the consequences of humankind’s domination of nature, and materialistic desires.
- Spontaneous involvement. Observe the emergence of a world in which no one is intentionally left behind. All people and their respective civilisations, have a journey and a role to play. Spontaneous and responsible engagement and involvement will be the hallmark of success.
- Human growth. Expect a gradual re-definition of growth, where there is a shift from materialism and wealth accumulation, to intellectual, emotional, relational and spiritual exploration and growth.
The life conditions anticipated by these statements provide a meaningful context for those who are ready, willing and able to co-create a new era of professional support services, that fifty years hence will be looked back upon as the first truly sustainable practices that supported planetary and species viability.
By accelerating the utilisation of integral consciousness, individuals, groups and complex societal systems, can learn to outperform traditional expectations, enhance work-life balance, increase resilience and quality of life, with relative grace and ease.
In his first mentoring session, the CEO of a Swiss company learned to impact the culture of his entire organisation through a simple behaviour change. Before the intervention, there was conflict and high employee turnover. Following the intervention, several employees who were in the exiting process became confused because they suddenly found they no longer wanted to leave.
The CEO was surprised and delighted at how easy it was to effect a change in his organisation that had eluded him for years.
A leadership team for a group of hospitals in South Africa sought to understand the real differences between their urban and township hospitals. They were disillusioned after a series of international consultants failed to help them discover the difference that would make a difference. After 5 Deep equipped them with insights about the hospital's patients, staff, leadership, culture and strategy, it became possible to design and build processes that respected differences between urban and township hospitals. For the first time they discovered legitimacy to expand what they had already been doing intuitively, which was to differentiate management practices depending upon the problems and circumstances in which each hospital was operating.
A high school dropout rate of 16% triggered the Hems MESH project in a former coalfields community of over 40,000 people, during a time of recession. The conflicting interests of multiple stakeholders (parents, teachers, industrialists, social workers, politicians, counsellors, police, health care professionals and economic development agents) became aligned following the revelation of insights from a year-long community capacity-building programme. New perspectives emerged that allowed the adoption of simple strategies to resolve the issues. High school dropout rates fell from 16% to 10% in the first year.
What really works?
Leading edge cosmology, when married with integral philosophy and theory, provides us with a new understanding of how all life works. Since the mid-1970’s there has been a surge in the exploration of emergence and evolution that has infected some fields of scientific inquiry, for example, evolutionary biology and evolutionary psychology. With the advent of modern measurement and validation techniques, many historic postulates in these fields have become accepted principles.
During the Second World War, the general focus on enhancing human performance inspired post-war scientific inquiry into the field of psychological health. This legitimised new research and practice, focused on exploring the real depth of human potential and the development of more unifying theories of psychological well-being and maturity.
Sixty years on, the work of developmental theorist, Clare W. Graves, has grown into a body of knowledge and practice that today we call Solonics, which in every way informs thought leadership for this transition between eras. The Gravesian body of knowledge was researched between 1950 and 1986, validated through large-scale, international field trials from 1974 to 1995 - a variant published by Beck and Cowen in the book, Spiral Dynamics in 1996. Since 1998, it has been applied and further developed as an art, science and practice by 5 Deep across a broad spectrum of individuals and organisations in more than thirty countries.
The application of solonics legitimises many of the innovations and changes that individuals and groups have heretofore only dreamt about. With the approach known as solonic practice, a new pathway beyond the present-day notion of sustainability, known as beneficial abundance, becomes a distinct probability.
What is solonic practice?
Today, 5 Deep offers a practice known as solonics, which brings forward the deep knowledge derived over the last sixty years of research and application.
The essential foundation of solonic practice is what 5 Deep calls an integral kosmology; a readily grasped metaphor which informs all decisions and enables the selection of the appropriate toolkit to accelerate the design and delivery of elegantly simple solutions that equip individuals and organisations to lead through complexity, innovation and change.
The solonic practice is structured around five phases of recognition, response, recovery, regeneration and renewal and is based upon three postulates:
- Inspired choice. Inspired choice leads to true sustainability by bringing committed attention to the achievement of a new quality of existence that considers all-of-life. For some, this happens when their level of consciousness allows them to make beneficially abundant choices and for others, it happens when they are presented with irresistible, yet tacitly life-affirming options.
- Integral map. The utilisation of an integral map and compass accelerates personal and professional development and brings precision to the design of life-affirming solutions.
- Factor 100 Change. It is essential to do more with less (and ultimately, where possible, with nothing), by seeking Factor 100 Change as the benchmark of success for all technological and societal innovation.
Solonic practice is guided by life-affirming principles. It has been tested, developed and proven over the last 25 years to provide leaders, change agents, coaches, mentors, facilitators, consultants and HR professionals with the ability to consolidate and develop their competencies into a comprehensive leading-edge practice.
What is the solonic pathway?
5 Deep offers a personal and professional developmental pathway to achieve mastery in solonic practice. It is for those who are ready to think what no one has yet thought, about that which everybody sees. The pathway is designed as an action-learning-based approach, beginning with a deep foundational level programme and progresses through curiosity-led exploration and inspired practice, to mastery.
Public and bespoke workshops and personal mentoring are offered on an ongoing basis by 5 Deep. For more details, contact Sheila Cooke on 07446 780 081 or 0207 193 0051 (UK), or by email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the author
Christopher Cooke is a pioneer in the application of the original theory of Clare W Graves. With over 18 years experience in application he advises and coaches internationally.
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