Integral Gender and the Power of Repetition

Since the publication of Numen, Old Men—during which time I have been picking the scab of integral gender politics (see the “integral” tag)—I cannot help but notice there has been an increase in communications from the Integral Machine about this subject, and it has a very familiar flavor.

For example, on February 25 I wrote two posts (here and here) about the Integral Life newsletter entitled “The Need for Men’s Liberation”. This week’s newsletter contains very similar content.

There is great power in repetition. The more people hear something, the more they are inclined to believe it is true.

But let’s be clear, there has been no engagement from the Integral Machine with my critique, despite comments left on this blog from Robb Smith who said “Perhaps you’d like to air your grievances with the integral community, though it is a bit theoretical and there’s a large portion of the audience who may not understand what you’re talking about, it still might be worth a dialogue with Ken or others … Let me know about the desire to connect”.

They just keep saying the same thing. Funny/sad really: Wilber is fond of using the “sheep” analogy in regard to gender (claiming the reality of “patriarchy” suggests the “sheepification of women”), but the sheep are really the rank and file of the integral community.

But make no mistake: there are also plenty of smart people in the integral community who see this for what it is. My off-the-record communications reveal a significantly more critical stance than that aired publicly in articles and blog posts. What’s that about, do you think?

I’m certainly getting bored making these comments about integral gender: you’re probably getting bored reading them. I’m not done yet, but life’s too short to play a never-ending game of repetition with the Integral Machine. It’s simply one of a spectrum of problematic positions to me, but they are fully invested in it.

But don’t say you weren’t warned.

9 thoughts on “Integral Gender and the Power of Repetition

  1. They’re terminally addicted to sex-role theory! Sheesh, that last newsletter was hard going…

    1. We’re clearly subject to the The Three Cards “Mindfuck” Trick when arguing this case, with their counter-argument being:

      “(1) The Higher Level Card (i.e. Sorry, it’s just over your head). Sorry, but you’re just not smart enough to realize I am smarter than you, because you’re on a lower (less divine) level.

      (2) The Projection Card (i.e., I know you are, but what am I). By criticizing me, you are really just criticizing yourself, because any problem you see in me is just a projection of a problem in yourself.

      (3) The Skillful Means Card (i.e., it’s all your own fault, dickhead). The most potent card of all! It’s not abuse; it’s not pathetic or ridiculous or wrong; it’s a crazy-wise teaching. You know, like Zen stuff. So when I call you a dickhead, it’s not because I’m a dickhead, it’s because you have a dickhead-complex that you need to evolve past, and I’m here to help you see that.”

  2. That response from Robb Smith is the same anti-intellectual BS response that comes from the pseudo-intellectual Integral community whenever criticized on their patriarchal stance.

    1. Indeed. BTW, hat tip to you, from memory: I think I discovered the above Three Cards “Mindfuck” Trick from your Twitter stream, which is a constant source of interesting snippets (and I’m not even on Twitter!).

      1. I’m also surprised you didn’t cite what I thought was the cheapest part of Smith’s post: “I do note that the sort of hermeneutic bias you ascribe to Wilber comes through in your own writing (e.g., “integral machine”), but hey, we all get angry at something”. The Nevada Young Entrepreneur of the Year is really carving you up with that hard-hitting textual analysis! Jeezuz… I’m struggling to work out if that was mindfuck card #1 or #2?

      2. Yea, I was pointed to those “3 cards” back when I was an employee of I-I. It helped to explain a lot….

  3. Hello!

    Happened upon your blog after listening to several audios and videos of David Deida. I’ve read some Wilbur but not thoroughly. One thing that annoys me however about Deida and others of these “WOMEN:VENUS, MEN:MARS” types is that although they claim they are somehow “spiritual” (what to speak of “spiritual leaders”), they seem to have ZERO understanding of how women and men who are TRULY grounded in a spiritual path behave and think.

    Their “gender roles” or “sex roles” do NOT show up amongst such people – nor any of this “feminine/masculine dichotomy in spirituality” crap.

    I can barely listen to any of that stuff because it’s just so fluffy and off the mark.

    1. One day I shall compile a list of useful quotes about these types of materials and “I can barely listen to any of that stuff because it’s just so fluffy and off the mark” will definitely be on it!

      Yes, these guys perpetuate some very pedestrian understandings of both gender and spirituality. When you put two half-baked truths together, it does not make a whole.

      The problem is, anyone communicating these ideas with appropriate depth simply does not get the readers, and attempting to access more readers seems to require the loss of appropriate depth. This is a conundrum if one seeks to correct commonly-held mistakes.

Comments are closed.