Ken Wilber, Helen LaKelly Hunt, Harville Hendrix & Marc Gafni: On the Nature of Connection

It is a rare opportunity to have these four mega thought leaders discuss the nature of connection in this dialogue.

Helen LaKelly Hunt and her husband Harville Hendrix have worked with couples for many decades and developed what they call Imago Therapy. Ken Wilber and Marc Gafni are the co-founders and initiating thought leaders of the Center for Integral Wisdom and are bringing Integral AQAL and Unique Self perspectives to this dialogue.

Stream the audio here:

Ken Wilber, Sally Kempton & Marc Gafni: The Second Face of God

In this dialogue, Ken Wilber, Sally Kempton, and Marc Gafni–co-founders of the Center for Integral Wisdom–talk about the Second Face of God, God in Second Person, the God as Beloved with whom I can have an I-Thou Relationship, as well as Guru Yoga and a new model for the Teacher-Student-Relationship.

Stream the audio here:

Michael Beckwith, Ken Wilber & Marc Gafni: Touching the Face of Tomorrow

Dr. Michael Beckwith is the Founder and Spiritual Director of the Agape International Spiritual Center, a trans-denominational spiritual community whose Sunday services in Culver City, California regularly draw 4,000 people. In his own words, “My aspiration is that every individual who is touched by the vibration of Agape is inspired to cultivate a heart of love as wide as the world.”

Rabbi Marc Gafni, now President of the Center for Integral Wisdom was then the Founder and Spiritual Director of Bayit Chadash, an international holistic movement rooted in, though not limited to, the Jewish Tradition. As Rabbi Marc shares, Bayit Chadash is “A new home for ancient souls.”

Rev. Michael begins the dialogue by sharing some of the history of Agape, as well as a few memorable anecdotes from his college years. It was, after all, as a young man studying psychobiology that his spontaneous recognition of “the Presence” first appeared—not to mention a host of other things that you wouldn’t want to tell your professor about. Now, decades later, Rev. Michael is redefining the term “higher education,” and he goes on to give some of the latest updates about the brand-new Agape University.

Rabbi Marc then turns the dialogue towards love. As he shares, the popular notion is that love is something that “happens to you”—like getting hit by lightning. Going on, he introduces the Kabbalist notion that love is not simply an emotion that happens to you, but is a deep spiritual perception that one can enact. Specifically, Reb. Marc is referring to a very high form of love, where one can perceive the nondual interconnectivity of all things, and all persons. As he points out, not only can this perception spontaneously drop upon you—”arousal from above”—but it can be actively engaged through practice (thereby transforming a state experience into a stage competence).

Ken takes a moment to situate the conversation in a kind of broader theoretical (AQAL) framework. As he explains, one of the great contributions of postmodern thought was its understanding that there is no such thing as perception, only perspectives. In the manifest world, there is no such thing as “pure perception,” because all perceptions are necessarily situated in the perspectives of the sentient beings in which those perceptions are arising. And, not only can one take a first-, second-, or third-person perspective on any given occasion, but the level of development of the individual taking those perspectives will fundamentally determine what the content of that occasion will be. Bringing it back to the current conversation, if someone isn‘t able to perceive, say, Divine Love, it‘s because they either aren’t open enough to access that perception as a state, or they aren’t developed enoughto access that perception as a stage.

Make no mistake about it, these three souls are exploring today’s spirituality; and in so doing, are touching the face of tomorrow. From the leading edge of Spirit’s own unfolding, an edge that appears to be nothing less than integral, what does it mean to describe the contours of Spirit?

Touching the Face of Tomorrow. Part 1. Perspectives, Perceptions, and Loving God.

Touching the Face of Tomorrow. Part 2. The Many Domains of Ministry.

Touching the Face of Tomorrow. Part 3. The Three Faces of God.

Stream the audios here:

Ken Wilber & Marc Gafni: A Political Pilgrimage to Your Highest Self

In this passionate dialogue, Rabbi Gafni, who is talking to us by phone from Israel, sets the context by relating the fact thatthree of his young son’s friends have recently been killed in “the mother of all conflicts”: the horribly sad and impossible situation that is the Middle East today.

Rabbi Marc and Ken outline numerous dimensions of the conflict. On what might be called a “horizontal” level, there are what Samuel Huntington called “the clash of civilizations,” or the conflicting cultures with th eir disparate histories. On a vertical level, there are the different stages, waves, or levels ofdevelopment that also seem to be involved. The capture of Saddam Hussein highlights,but does not change, these fundamental issues.

Of the many different and legitimate scales of vertical development, Marc and Ken make reference to Spiral Dynamics and a few of its colorterms, including: red (egocentric, power drives), blue (mythic orders, fundamentalist religion, traditionalist), orange (modern, rational-scientific), green (postmodern, sensitive self, cultural creatives, multicultural), and yellow (beginning of integral or comprehensive and inclusive). It is not necessary to know all the details of any of these developmental models in order to appreciate this dialogue, but if you would like a short introduction to Spiral Dynamics, please see “What Is Spiral Dynamics Integral.”

After discussing the impact of all of these dimensions on the Mid-East conflict, Rabbi Marc suggests a simple but profound gesture: a political pilgrimage from Ur to Jerusalem, sponsored by Integral Institute and Bayit Chadash, that would both represent, and call attention to, the radical necessity of an integral approach to this incredibly complex and difficult conflict.

A useless gesture, or the beginning of a new way toapproach a conflict where all other approaches have dramatically failed? Listen to this moving dialogue and see what you think. But one thing is certain: this is indeed the mother of all conflicts, and if we cannot find a way to gain insights into its deepest contours, then the future not just of the region, but the world, is in doubt.

Stream the audios here:

Ervin Laszlo & Marc Gafni: Evolutionary Love

Listen to this audio dialogue between Ervin Laslo & Marc Gafni. The topic is Evolutionary Love.

Ervin Laszlo is a Hungarian philosopher of science, systems theorist, integral theorist, originally a classical pianist. He is the Founder and President of The Club of Budapest, Director and Co-Founder of the Ervin Laszlo Institute for Advanced Study (ELIAS) and of the Laszlo New-Paradigm Leadership Center (Italy)… He is the author or co-author of fifty-four books translated into as many as twenty-three languages, and the editor of another thirty volumes including a four-volume encyclopedia.

Marc Gafni is the Co-Founder and President of the Center for Integral Wisdom, the author of many books including the award winning Your Unique Self, a visionary scholar and integral wisdom teacher.

Ervin Laszlo:

“…everything that happens from the original Big Bang in this universe or in prior universes, when things fall together and move together and create wholes, larger and larger, more and more complex wholes which more and more interact, more and more communicate with each other, and they are really entangled as a physicist would say.

That’s because there is built into each element of this universe, each particle, each atom, each cell in a living organism, its belonging to the others, its coherence with this larger whole, which comes through in spirituality. It comes through in a deeper philosophy. It comes through in a deeper, honest theology. And this is basically what the motor is. If this universe was not built in such a way, was not created with its laws of nature and development in such a way that things pull together to create wholes, then we wouldn’t be here to ask these questions and the universe would still be a random concourse of perhaps carbon – but carbon is already highly integrated – so photons or initial particles, neutrons and electrons, and that wouldn’t be much more than that. Even creating an atom calls for pulling together the elements of the nucleus and the electrons that go around it. So, evolution is what happens, is the essence of things, and evolution is based on the attraction, on the relation of the parts to each other.”

Marc Gafni:

“Allurement… you’re describing a core allurement that exists between all things. You just stated it, of course, so beautifully and so musically and poetically. So let’s try and enter into it for our listeners – and there’ll be tens of thousands of listeners on this set of calls – so I really want to try and break it down for people. So when we talk about – the phrase you use is, not evolutionary love, the formal phrase you use is an all-embracing love, which is a beautiful phrase, which is the force of – and I’m borrowing Thomas Berry’s word – allurement that coheres everything together. Let’s try, if we can, if I could invite just to show people three or four just simple examples. Although you mentioned a couple implicitly even in your first opening, but just as we come deeper into the symphony to get a sense of where do we see that? Where can an average, intelligent layperson see that as it’s unfolding in the evolutionary ascension?”

Stream the audio and read the transcript here:

Download the Transcript here: Evolutionary Love: Ervin Laszlo and Marc Gafni in Dialogue Aug. 5, 2013

John Mackey & Marc Gafni: World Spirituality Dialogue

This is one of the first recorded dialogues that John Mackey and Marc Gafni had. They talk about the relationship between Conscious Entrepreneurship, Unique Self, and World Spirituality based on Integral Principles.

Stream the audio here: