Integral Theory and Integral Life Practice

While looking for things I may be able to do by myself for my OCPD in addition to the professional psychotherapy I receive, I've encountered a book entitled Integral Life Practice by Ken Wilber and his three colleagues, which in turn has lead me to a mind-boggling theory called Integral Theory by Ken Wilber himself, on which it's based.

This practice, which is also called Integral Life Practice, is one of the tens of applications of Integral Theory. It proposes to integrate body, emotion, mind, and spirit into life or to strive for physical health, emotional balance, mental clarity, and spiritual awakening in all of what Integral Theory calls "quadrants", or perspectives or dimensions of reality, which can be summarized schematically as follows:

  • Individual/interior = subjective ("I") - intentional
  • Individual/exterior = objective ("It") - behavioral
  • Collective/interior = intersubjective ("We") - cultural
  • Collective/exterior = interobjective ("Its") - social

Integral Life Practice proposes to work on these "quadrants" in the following modules:

  • Core modules
    • Shadow (= repressed, primary, authentic emotion)
    • Mind
    • Body
    • Spirit
  • Additional modules
    • Ethics
    • Sex
    • Work
    • Emotion
    • Relationships

And it practices both "vertically" and "horizontally". "Vertical" practice works on the "depth" in each module in each quadrant, while "horizontal" practice covers the "breath" of the modules and quadrants to work on.

Since I've encountered this practical application of Integral Theory, I can't help being exited. Unfortunately, the above short schematic summary of mine can barely scratch the surface of the depth and breath of Integral Life Practice. Like many other practices it's rather difficult to learn only from a book what one is supposed to do. So I've decided to enroll in an online audiovisual course called Integral Life Practice Starter Kit. Integral Life Practice seems far more fundamental than psychotherapy, and I can also continue it after I'm forced to stop receiving professional psychotherapy mainly for financial reasons in a couple of months.

What I live best in this practice is "shadow work" in the shadow module as the prerequisite for working on the other core and additional modules. Simpl(isticall)y speaking, it's to bring the repressed emotion from the past, especially from childhood, from the unconscious to consciousness and liberate oneself from its shackles in the present. I'll also continue my "shadow work" using other books I've found. It will affect me not only in my treatment of OCPD but in my life in general.

In order to better understand Integral Life Practice and implement it into my life I've also decided to read some of the books by Ken Wilber himself, including A Brief History of Everything, A Theory of Everything, Integral Psychology, Integral Spirituality, and Integral Meditation.