Wednesday, March 14, 2007

AQAL Journal

I was notified of the fact that AQAL Journal, the long awaited "academic" publication on matters integral, has finally been released. At this moment, the available issues (all from 2006, nrs. 1-4), are available only to subscribers (nrs. 1-2) and members (nrs. 3-4) of the Integral Institute.

Volumes 1 and 2 have over 400 pages, volumes 3 and 4 are about half their size, and the expected size of future volumes is expected to be around 100-200 pages. It will be a quarterly, online publication. Apparently, the plan to come up with a, much more expensive, print version of the journal, to be distribued to libraries, has been abandoned. Curiously, the copyright date is set to 2005.

The first two volumes contain presentation papers of the various departments of Integral University, covering ecology, criminology, therapy, finance, business, faith, health, politics, science, feminism and community development. The subject matters of the other 2 volumes is more varied. Some of the authors (Wilpert, Koller, Benjamin) have appeared on Integral World.

There's an interesting note on "Critical presentations", right at the start of the publication on the page stating the aims and scope of the Journal. It concludes:

"The journal sees the process of hypothetical and critical engagement as essential to the health and success of Integral Theory."
However, we all know by now that the topic of criticism regarding integral matters has been rather, ehm... explosive, of late. Debate has raged primarily, not about the the value of integral philosophy in itself, but on who is qualified to criticize and who isn't. Killing debate from the start. Not to mention the hallowed tradition of ignoring whatever is published on Integral World, the premier site for independent and critical reflection on integral matters.

Considering the long time it took this publication to come into existence, we are glad to see it distributed now, even if only to "members". We'll have to see if this publication will really open itself up to critical voices from inside or outside the integral field.

11 Comments:

Blogger ZAK said...

Strange, what sense does it make to have a journal and only members of a community can read it?

I-I is a strange group, they make strange decisions, and this is one of em. To just give a journal to members. I guess that is a marketing device, or since there are serious rumblings in the community, which is a sad thing (I witnessed this myself as I was an IN member for about a year) they think this will get their members involved, and make them feel special.

What they should do is let some of the magazine be read by anyone, and the whole issue for the members.

6:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To give an idea of the overall context, there's an interesting development on Zaadz reported via Integral Options Cafe.

Someone should confirm if this is indeed the case, or if the Zaadz people will reconsider:

Under 'Speedlinking 3/16/07

(you'll have to scroll down, be patient and do it) there's the announcement in the Integral/Buddhist subsection:

'The Integral Institute Pod at Zaadz has become invitation only.'

The URL discussing this change on Zaadz can be read here:

http://pods.zaadz.com/ii/discussions/view/119449

Its meant to ensure discussion will stay 'Turquoise'

Sweet.

The stated slogan for integral has been 'transcend and include.'



Interestingly two Z threads discussing problematic sitauations were stopped while discussion was still lively and a variety of viewpoints being expressed. Discussion was energetic but quite within the bounds of courtesy. Nevertheless, both were locked.

The first thread lasted about a month and was still going strong before it was locked

http://pods.zaadz.com/wie/discussions/view/60278

The second one lasted just a few days before being locked.

http://pods.zaadz.com/ii/discussions/view/101992

The grounds given for locking both threads seem odd.

IMO, the unstated practice amongst the Integral elite appears to have become become 'segregate and exclude'.

It would be more honest to admit that what they want to create is an exclusive social club, like the old Studio 54 in New York City. At least there were no pretensions about saving the world--the clear agenda was hedonism and ego, without anyone pretending otherwise.

5:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's funny how Ken and company went on a rampage recently at IN trashing The Secret as magical belief when they have their own little, isolated and magical belief system about AQAL that must remain isolated from the evil outside world who just doesn't understand. I've found that one can take whatever they say as a projection to their own intrinsic problems. Who needs the new AQAL Journal when we have such a diverse integral movement emerging now within an experiential and academic peer-reviewed atmosphere beyond their childish magic. I will not donate one cent to such nonsense, much like I wouldn't donate one cent to the Republican Party or the Catholic Church. All of which, of course, share the same level of consciousness.

9:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

there's very little about this site that is "premier", when it comes to "critical reflection of integral matters." there's plenty wrong with the integral scene, but you're pretty much missing all of it.

best of luck!

2:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

fine then. call it 'studio integral'. who gives a damn? are you so obsessed with being excluded that you want to spend your time tearing something down?

jeesh. if ever i seen a bunch of dudes who need to get laid..

;)

2:50 AM  
Anonymous tursake said...

Now Ken is claiming in his blog that he has exceptional skills in pattern recognition. Have you guys read it? Does he think he is somehow a better person than the rest of us mortals? Why isn't anybody bashing this pattern recognition stuff already?

11:15 PM  
Blogger ZAK said...

Bottom line when people start protecting their idols, rather than searching for truth then searching for truth stops, and protecting their obsession proceeds as their primary interest. The displaced psychological impulse that prompts them to replace truth with some idol- Ken Wilber, Andrew Cohen has not been dealt with by them.

To associate truth with any individual is the greatest mistake a spiritual seeker can make.
Truth has no favorites, friends, or need of us, it speaks for itself, by itself, alone, unique, and to itself.

8:42 PM  
Blogger ZAK said...

Bottom line when people start protecting their idols, rather than searching for truth then searching for truth stops, and protecting their obsession proceeds as their primary interest. The displaced psychological impulse that prompts them to replace truth with some idol- Ken Wilber, Andrew Cohen has not been dealt with by them.

To associate truth with any individual is the greatest mistake a spiritual seeker can make.
Truth has no favorites, friends, or need of us, it speaks for itself, by itself, alone, unique, and to itself.
We can only begin to know it by becomming it ourselves in some form.

The student must see this to get out of this rut. If they don’t then all of their energy will be wasted in defending their idols ego, not seeking truth.
Wilber has lured these people into becoming defenders of the faith. A faith that has produced nothing to defend!

9:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, and then some people waste all their time lambasting thinkers instead of moving themselves and their communities forward...
But I guess you MUST be mindlessly for Ken or against him, right zak?

10:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Norman Einstein... Ken Wilber goes to South Park.
http://www.cafepress.com/normaneinstein

6:21 PM  
Blogger DGA said...

The academic journal of record for all matters integral is the Integral Review. Jonathan Reams has done a fine job refereeing a spirited and inclusive debate. Inclusive that is of the negative and positive tasks of criticism: the negative task, of identifying problems and mistakes and refuting stupid ideas, and the positive task, which amounts to proposing more responsible concepts.

Those among us who frame this debate as if it were personal or a matter of tearing this or that person for the sake of tearing him or her down seem to misunderstand the nature of academic work. Frankly, if your exposure to critical thinking comes from reading Wilber, then this is not surprising; Wilber consistently misunderstands basic reasoning and academic responsibility in his writings.

These things get hashed out in public. It is ugly. It can be very bruising to the ego for some, and an exercise in ego-exertion for others. That is largely irrelevant. The point is not to win or lose a debate. The point is to work at developing responsible concepts, whomever produces them.

The idea that Wilber's project is to be praised (as anonymous says here) or should be immune from critique because it is not yours or has moved on to the positive task of building something is patently absurd. Cutting the forest down to build a piece of crap, as Neil Young would put it. Building for the sake of building, with a bad plan and poor materials, is a fool's enterprise. If you want to build something useful, it's generally best to listen to your neighbor when he says: "Hey Dummy! You need to build the foundation before you buy roofing shingles!"

One is, of course, welcome to reply: "Hey Dummy! The foundation's fine, would you like to see?" (if it is indeed so)

5:58 AM  

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