Kheper Home | Spiral Dynamics Home | Topics Index | New | Search

Beige Purple Red Blue Orange Green Yellow Turquoise

Spiral Dynamics vMemes


Introductory comments: The following description of one of the Spiral Dynamics stages of development of consciousness, considered first tier in the Beck and Wilber models (Beck's former co-worker Cowan now rejects the idea of tiers), is taken from a page that is no longer on the Web. It quotes material that is in Beck & Cowan's book on Link to Amazon com Spiral Dynamics, some of which has been quoted in Wilber's book on Integral Psychology (pp.47ff).

Animistic-tribalistic"PURPLE 'magical' MEME 2nd Awakening

Graves Code: B-O

Basic theme: Keep the spirits happy and the 'tribe's' nest warm and safe

Characteristic beliefs and actions:

Where seen: Belief in guardian angels and Voodoo-like curses, blood oaths, ancient grudges, chanting and trance dancing, good luck charms, family rituals, and mystical ethnic beliefs and superstitions. Strong in Third-World settings, gangs, athletic teams, and corporate 'tribes.'" (Beck & Cowan, p. 45)

Comments: Clearly based on the materialistic psycho-developmental theoery that magic and occultism represents retrogressive or archaic consciousness. I'm reminded of colonialist Europe with its attitude to "superstitious savages" who needed the light of Christian Civilization to save their souls, or at least to make them better second class citizens. In this, most modern representatives of Integral Theory betray the remnants of this very outmoded 19th century way of thinking (ref external link Meyerhoff - Bald Ambition, Chapter 5: Social Evolution (April 2006); external link Carlson - Integral Ideology (August 2008)). So even if there isn't a racial sterotyping (which Wilber and other integralists would rightly consider abhorrant) as there was in the 19th through to mid 20th century, there is still a cultural stereotyping here, with animistic cultures way down on the hierarchy. Not surprising that Wilber isn't able to understand or incorporate occultism into his over-arching framework.

The denigration of magical thinking is one example of where the linear model of psycho-social archetypes departs from a more authentic insight into archetypes. Mimi Lobell's spatial archetypes does not have anything equivalent to either Beige / Survival Sense or Purple / Magical. Her Sensitive Chaos is a different reality entirely, an animistic appreciation of the Tao of nature.

Crown Chakra
Creative Imagination type

Significantly, in Christopher Hill's rainbow chakra system, purple, or violet, correpsonds to "higher creativite imagination, occultism, artistic creativity." With the exception of occultism, which falls outside the materialistic and exoteric paradigm, these would be features that in Spiral Dynamics represent the "Upper Tier". Compare also Alice Bailey's Purple Ray of Ceremonial Magic. Perhaps for this reason at least, Wilber rejects the Beck-Cowan Spiral Dynamics colours in favour of a more conventional colour spectrum

Kheper index page
Topics index page
Spiral Dynamics main page

contact me

page by M.Alan Kazlev
page uploaded 2 November 2009