Posted by: Monkey | January 3, 2014

Following the Spiral of Human Emergence – Part 2


Before we continue on our journey through this Spiral of human emergence there are a few more points that I wish to highlight.

Firstly, and of utmost importance to acknowledge again, is that the entire Spiral exists within us. This is so important because through seeing this we can cultivate compassion for everyone wherever they are as some part of us also holds the frequencies of that worldview. We transcend and include. Anytime there is a vertical movement that does not accept and integrate the prior aspects there will result in some kind of disassociation and potentially a pathology.

Secondly, even though there are clear and distinct delineation’s that have been made between the MEME’s, our development through them is not such a clean affair. At any one moment there is likely to be different aspects of us operating from different stages within the Spiral. There will be aspects of us lagging behind our developmental ‘centre of gravity’. We are multi-faceted beings with a whole range of capabilities and attributes within us; some of these are going to be significantly developed while others not as much. In short while we are going to mostly identify with a particular stage of development there is always going to be parts that need work to catch up while other areas of our lives may even be charging forwards.

It is also possible that being in specific situations, such as under certain kinds of stress, may also cause us to temporarily regress and in worst case scenarios, if a trauma is large enough, to completely regress.

From this space of identifying this movement through the spiral as the ground from which we all arise there is no good or bad about being at any specific stage, it simply is where we are at this moment. What we need to be more concerned about, I think, in terms of ourselves and the greater cultural world-stage, is the healthy vs unhealthy expressions of each MEME code.

All that being said, let us continue our explorations!



There comes a time when the chaos and intensity of a ‘free’ life in the red MEME is too much to handle any longer. The reckless abandon of a perceived freedom becomes tainted with guilt and a longing for redemption stirs. Order needs to be made out of chaos.
Blue is the realms of religion and cults, army mentality and firms where loyalty to the company is shown by a life of service. Blue is a space of conformity, group unity (only within conformity) and adherence to some form of higher authority.
The predominant worldview of people and cultures operating from the blue MEME is to sacrifice now for future reward.
Sound familiar?
If we put in our hours and years for the company we will be rewarded with a comfortable retirement. If we lay down our lives in sacrifice for our nation we will be rewarded as hero’s. If we give of ourselves in this life then the kingdom of heaven will be ours in the next.

Blue is loyal, stable, rigid, redundant and dogmatic. Truth is given by an external source and is to be followed strictly and without question, a little-blue-churchdivine plan gives people their place in life. There is a deep desire to find meaning and purpose in life and to bring stability and order to all things. Things are as they are because. Because why? Because a book or person says so…
Blue may be stern and rigid yet that does not mean it is without joy.

The other week, out of curiosity, a few friends and I went along to an open dinner at the “12 tribes” Christian sect. To me this was a perfect representation of the blue MEME. Community was valued as the most important thing along with living EXACTLY to the accords of their faith. They sung and they danced and played music which held to strict forms and had the look of well-worn repetition. Little emphasis seemed to be put on the freedom of the individual and intention to maintain a harmonious communal living was spoken about as requiring rigorous attention to adherence. When speaking with a member I asked about his life prior to joining this group and he spoke of being lost in reckless drug use and parties, a life that he started to feel had no meaning. Joining this religious sect had given him the meaning and purpose he was yearning for and saved him from what was now apparent to him as a self-destructive path. Classic example of the red-> blue transition.

Blue is also the stage of right and wrong, good vs evil. People heavily in blue will have no compunction about speaking out against sinners (which is really a natural evolution to keep red in check) and there is no room for compromise. God is a stern, strict and just one with room only for those who accept his word as absolute.
As mentioned above this MEME may also show itself in military and police organisations where the focus is on maintaining law and order, again a function of keeping red chaos in check.
Some of the more traditional workplaces to come out of the industrial era will also hold the mentality of an individual in blue when those who, year after year, maintain an unwavering commitment to their jobs. Security and the intense need for some kind of rewarding future drives this behaviour. A tight structure, schedules, lifetime guarantees and clear consequences are all valued heavily by blue.



After time in blue an individual or culture may begin to chafe at the strict maintenance of discipline and tradition. One may become dissatisfied with living in sacrifice now for some abstract reward in a far-off future and instead begin to crave the good life right here right now.
Enter orange, the worldview of autonomy and independence, material abundance, success, science and technology.
While much of our Western first world has been built upon the backs of blue and their unending laborious sacrifices, the comfort and ease we now take for granted has arisen out of the orange MEME.

7989080-business-man-who-achieved-success-on-an-orange-sofaAt orange we see a can-do, play-to-win attitude that thrives on getting things done, competition and comfortably enhanced living. It is the realm of entrepreneurship, ladder climbing and fast paced dedication to the scientific method. No longer is there a reliance upon an external authority stating how things should or should not be… no, now we need proof! Show me the science backing your statement and then I might consider your proposal.
While devotion and dedication is the measure of worth in blue, here in orange worth is directly shown by ones success and expensive cars, clothes, houses, accessories, networks and who one dates all demonstrate immediately just how successful one is.

There is no waiting around here; either you are making it happen or you better get out of my way while I do!

There have been many amazing benefits to arise out of the orange MEME which have seen tremendous advances in science and technology enabling us to live a significantly better life than our ancestors. At the same time, however, the worldview inherent in this MEME is very much a “live for today” one and has given rise to a whole host of environmental and social problems as any possible opportunity is exploited to make the present ‘a better place’. The orange MEME is impatient and wants things done right now as quick as possible and long-term repercussions can be easily overlooked in this incessant drive to make things happen.



We have made it happen, or our parents did, and comfortable living, quality education and access to almost unlimited information and resources is a simple standard in our lives until a growing dissatisfaction begins to creep in. Gradually there is a sense that material abundance isn’t quite enough, that surely there must be more to life out there, right?

Welcome green, oh boy what a MEME!

The emergence of green can be found in mid-life crises where an adult rushes off to join greenpeace for example and this MEME seemed to come in to full effect at the end of the 60’s when the first wave of free love emerged in response to the horrific wars for resources and the higher good that orange/blue still continues to fight.
Nowadays, though, green is turning up more and more in the young who are quickly disillusioned by the conventional education system that attempts to force one into a specific mould for society. Many young people are now looking around at the excesses of material orange and find themselves deeply suspicious in it’s ability to provide true happiness and meaning to life.

Here at green a yearning for connection reawakens and, as with every oscillation through the spiral (more on these oscillations in part 3), it’s a step deeper. Green is largely community oriented with an emphasis on exploring the inner being of self and others. A sense of spirituality arises along with a deep desire to love and honour nature, share resources amongst all, liberate humans from greed and dogma as well as step into pluralism and consensus decision making. Everyone is entitled to their say equally!

Green fights hard to remove artificial divisions and eliminate bad or negative attitudes while attempting to unveil the richness, peace and love within all. Acceptance, harmony and togetherness are vitally important here and the emphasis in group gatherings, I have often found, is making sure that everyone feels welcomed. Elements disturbing that sense of flow and harmony will be ignored and ostracised, often with an alarming sense of righteousness that is strikingly at odds with green’s external attitude of embracing all. cfhu_pluralism_02

At the green altitude we will also find that metaphysics, new age spirituality and the world of feelings and ‘intuition’ replaces the scientific analysis from orange, which will sometimes be vehemently shunned. This is not a mystical superstition (unless elements from purple are still very strong in an individual) rather it is a seeking of harmony with the natural and unseen order of all things. The competitiveness so apparent in orange is dimmed into sharing, understanding, appreciating and tolerance.

An interesting thing happens at green in that gender roles become less rigid and in many cases even reverse! Men at orange are extremely driven to succeed individuals yet when they hit a centre at green often become somewhat ‘flow boys’ soft and in touch with their feelings and usually quite a little lost. This is much to the frustration of green women who, despite rallying against the oppressive patriarchal societies by hardening their exploration of boundaries (and often becoming significantly more masculine in the process) still tend to yearn for a deeply masculine man in touch with a life purpose (to emerge in our leap into second tier, detailed in part 3).

The most positive things to come from green, which are hard won after a long human struggle, are the emergence of a deeper sense of spirituality, a new reverence for and care for the environment and nature (much needed to solve the major problems arising in orange) and the beginnings of the ability to hold a truly pluralistic view in the welcoming of everyone’s voice at the table. At green we finally start to be able to actually take another persons perspective and a deeper note on compassion and love becomes available.

And then…

There is the, at times almost aggressive, righteousness that green stands for. While holding to a stance of everyone’s say is equal, especially when sticking up for marginalised and oppressed groups, green often hypocritically denies the input of anyone who disagrees with this view. Green is almost violently against hierarchies yet through it’s own actions participates with the, what is a completely natural function of evolution, creation of hierarchy! By saying it’s anti-hierarchy view is the correct one it has now put itself at the top of a hierarchy of views! There is an almost mind-bending and infuriating sense of logic that occurs here while remaining completely out of sight of its proponents (can’t see the water we are swimming in).
Noted philosopher Ken Wilber calls this phenomenon “boomeritis”.
While orange denies the internal subjective experience (and it’s associated spirituality) in favour of science, green compresses the world to flatland in it’s own denial of developmental stages and deconstruction of differences.
“Everyone is equal, no-one is better than another (and this view is the right one, i.e. it’s better than the rest)”
Green shakes the very foundation of orange in it’s attempt to topple what it sees as the oppressive patriarchal, anti-feminist, environment destroying industry without ever seeing that it is actually standing upon the very shoulders of what it is trying to topple!!

My statements are not to say that things should not change or that there is anything at all wrong with pluralism, however there is a distinct difference between trying to tear down a previous order to install a new one versus going beyond and then including all the amazing things that were made possible by what came before.
No-one made it to this green MEME without experiencing abundance of some sort, abundance that was provided by this patriarchal, materialistic, capitalist society. And it’s not to say that there have not been injustices and mistakes. It’s just that these are the inevitable consequences of a natural evolution trying to figure it out along the way.
Instead there is the opportunity, as always, to transcend and include. To take the best parts of the technological world and instil them with green sustainable solutions, and in fact this is definitely happening worldwide… quietly, carefully and intentionally the next MEME to arise, yellow, is stepping up to do the job.


Posted by: Monkey | December 16, 2013

The Promise

I wrote the following poem when I felt moved by the painting of a local artist Anna Kling. I really like her work and the ability to simultaneously capture sensual, sexual, spiritual and natural worlds all in one.

Her painting is called “The Promise” and my poem is the same. Included below is a recording I made of myself speaking the poem which I originally sent to her. From this we discussed collaborating together to create a series combining my poetry and her paintings. Unfortunately due to time and circumstance the project never materialised, although I did write a few more poems for her paintings which I may also post at a later day.

Thanks for reading!


The Promise


Naked we stand

Minds unfurling
traveling upwards along the tall tree towering…

Its branches reach out tips touching the endless expanse of space
filled with stars sparkling and shimmering, swirling in ceaseless movements of aliveness.

We play.
Dancing and diving, ducking and weaving
in the infinite cosmos
our feet firmly planted
here, now
on our mother

The moon peeks out behind the thick trunk and
I take your hand.

Warmth instantly sparks, tingling along my arm
to pulse in a heart beating with gratitude
to be here
with you.

For as long as it serves us
serves life
serves love

I promise.

spiraldynamics32Spiral Dynamics is a description of the unfolding stages of human development. I say “a” description not “the” description intentionally. It is just one model of, which there are quite a few, that attempts to describe a trend that has been observed in the nature of humans both as individuals and cultures. And it happens to be the one I am currently engaged in studying, plus it uses pretty colours to describe each stage.

4Q.jpgThe nature of evolution, as I pointed to in my discussion on Integral Theory, works simultaneously in all four quadrants (I, it, we, its). Spiral Dynamics is speaking primarily to the two left hands sides which is the “I” as an individual and the “we” as a cultural expression.

The following article is my personal reflections on the study of Spiral Dynamics. As a human I reserve the right to make mistakes, be wrong and change my mind at a later point in time. If there is something you disagree with in my writing please feel free to challenge it! It may engage in a lively debate or it may be me bowing my head in acquiescence of a new, previously unemerged, viewpoint within me.

Spiral Dynamics speaks to the presence of what we call a “natural hierarchy” or also a “holarchy”. As I described in the previous article a holarchy is one where each level transcends and includes the one before it. It’s not that one is better than another (although this holbiodistinction is difficult to wrap ones head around at first) rather, that the enfolding level has increased in complexity while still including everything that was present in the one before it. This increase in complexity gives rise to new, previously dormant, levels of thinking and at the same time new problems to go along with it.

The struggle with explaining Spiral Dynamics or any model of adult human development is that until a certain level of thinking complexity is achieved, the acknowledgement that there is a naturally occurring hierarchy is either difficult to grasp or entirely rejected as interfering with basic human rights and equality. If you notice yourself reading about this model and immediately wanting to reject it as being unhumanistic, then learning more about this very thing will probably enrich your life in ways difficult to explain until you experience them for yourself.
Acknowledgement of these stages is actually incredibly compassionate as when we develop the ability to see the stages we can truly serve the people at each level where they are at with what they need. Which is in opposition to bludgeoning them with our point of view that thinks it knows best, and in actual fact can create a whole host of problems by forcing complex levels of functioning on cultures and elements of society that are not yet ready to hold them.
There is no skipping stages on the Spiral ladder and at the same time the potential for every stage is held within us.

We all progress through the spiral as we develop from baby to adult at the same time as our culture evolves, ebbs and flows through different stages of this great spiral of awareness. As far as I’m concerned there is no cap, there is no ultimate level from which to reign supreme, there is only never-ending evolution. I am excited because each generation builds upon the prior and the coming generations are going to totally kick ass, once they sort out all the problems we have created at our current stage of development… and then they will create a whole new set of even more complex ones for following generations to work with.


How each stage emerges is in response to the life conditions it is faced with. Less complex stages struggle with meeting day to day
needs for food, clothing and shelter (it’s hard to ponder the universe or speak about topics such as feminism when one is hungry all the time!) whilst more complex stages come in to being by having access to all the trappings of a modern life and the extra time to go along with it (and the huge resource of the internet helps).

An increase in complexity gives rise to more complex problems and issues to work with. The ‘higher’ we reach, the more can actually go wrong. For example moving into an industrialised (orange), success at-all-costs driven world we have created, for the very first time, the potential to cause massive global environmental damage, while also developing the capacity through nuclear weapons to potentially wipe out most of life on the planet!

All that preamble being said, lets have a little wander through the spiral itself and what each level, called a ‘MEME’ has to offer.
What I write that follows is my own interpretation of the basic needs, predominant worldview and what is needed to shift to the next iteration of complexity for the first 3 MEMEs..



The beige MEME could be thought of as that first step towards the consciousness that we began to identify distinctly as ‘human’. At this level the primary engagement with the world is sensory and intuitive. Survival in finding food and shelter day to day is the basic need that has to be met. All energy is devoted to staying alive. There is no contemplation or understanding of a future and whatever urges that arise in this moment are acted upon without consideration for potential consequences. If hungry – eat, if thirsty – drink, if tired – sleep, if horny – fuck, if need to shit or piss – do so.
There is a fallacy, born in the fantasy of the ‘noble savage’ of some idealised state of being at one with nature that individuals at this stage hold. They may be one with nature however it is from an entirely fused state where the distinction between self and environment are blurry and hard to make out, this is a virtually automatic state of existence.

Beige is found in infancy, Alzheimer’s disease, other mental illnesses… and in really really drunk people. drunk-girl-pee-smile-456a110907
As basic survival needs, and with healthy brain function, primitive man and children everywhere begin to move towards a recognition of danger, a differentiation of self from the environment and as such moves towards the need for relationship with others. Strength is to be found in numbers against this scary outside world, it’s time for tribe.




And so, with the purple MEME, we enter completely into tribal modes of living. This is the first of what we can think of as the “we” MEME’s in distinction to the “I” MEME’s, like the prior. The tendency is for individuals and cultures to swing back and forth between this more “I” or “we” orientation.
In purple the dominating need is for safety and security for our kind. Survival is viewed as survival of the tribe and organisation will be around how to make this so. Purple culture will be full of rites and rituals, songs and dances, sacred objects and worshipping of the seasons and the elements.
A differentiation from the environment has occurred and there is an urge to live in harmony with nature, to appease the nature spirits so that peaceful living may be found.
HamatsaShaman1The thinking of a purple mind is going to be mystical, animistic and shamanistic. We all have access to this type of thinking on a daily basis and it will be found in places such as superstitions (ladders, mirrors and black cats) including in sports or business people who have such things as lucky underwear, in cults. There is also a big tendency towards the pre-post fallacy where individuals from further along the spiral will look back idolising the purple way of being as a deeply spiritual and desirable stage when in truth these deeper levels of spirituality are found further along (just that we have to go through a lot of rationality and embracing of complex patterns and logic to get there, which I can totally understand seems like it is going the wrong direction!)
Where this MEME breaks down is that there is no genuine access to a world-centric viewpoint. There is “us the people” and everyone else is outsiders. Our way, the traditional way that things have always been done, is the right and only way. Any other way of being cannot be imagined until, that is, this MEME begins to break down. Everything that happens is the result of spirits and life is lived in a way to appease those spirits, enter the Shaman the holder of the knowledge to do just the thing. Enter the world of curses and hexes, where misfortune can be overcome by the creation of some special potion and perhaps the incantation of sacred verses.
As safety and security of the group is met and access to the outside world of different views is given, many of these superstitions are found to be baseless and members in the group will begin yearning for freedom from these stifling rituals and traditions. Individuals will begin to think of taking action for themselves finding weakness and fallibility in the leaders (or mummy and daddy in a child’s developmental progression).




Enter red as we swing back, once again, to an “I” focused MEME. In the development of children this is the time of the “terrible two’s” up to 5 years or so and the assertion of independence. This MEME is also going to be found in rebellious teens and in places of low-income high-struggle living. At the core of the red MEME is “fuck you I’ll do what I want when I want”, “nobody tells me what to do”, “the world is a harsh place, only the strong survive and I’ll do whatever it takes to get mine”.
This is a world of the predator-prey relationship and both sides of this relationship are subject to the MEME code.
The world of drugs and violence, rampant sex (it aint for free though baby!), ghettos, gangs and the concrete jungle. The intensity of our once warring ancestors resurges here in the modern day.

Red is not an aberration that we should stamp out, rather it exists within all of us as do all the MEMEs. It’s a necessary step along the ladder of development where we learn to deal with obstacles, discover our own persona
l power and dispatch life’s monsters until we learn greater refinement that happens as we continue to struggle into our own growth. There is little to no guilt here, the top dog lives without remorse for all the lives he crushed on his way to being the best. Dreams of grandiosity abound with the encouragement of TV shows, movies and video games facilitating this necessary sense of self to be consolidated.
Unfortunately this red world is a reality for millions of people on the planet who are stalled within what is, to them, a very real world of predation where the only thing they can do is fight unceasingly for their independence and freedom.
Once again a fallacy arises from what we will later discover at green, where many who would even contemplate opening an article such as this reside. Seeing red there is admiration for the utter abandon it lives in the world, particularly when pockets exist outside of ghettos, and the genuine and caring desire is to help the continuation into freedom, creativity and discovery.

When surprisingly, and counter to what many good-natured people attempt to implement, what is needed to help red move along the spiral is good old fashioned discipline and a reinstatement of a higher authority as a guiding force, and perhaps even saviour, to a troubled soul.


Stay tuned for the next instalment when we dive into the next three MEMEs commencing with blue, the MEME of truth and destiny.

**For more information check:

“Spiral Dynamics – masering values, leadership, and change” Don Edward Beck & Christopher C Cowan, Blackwell Publishing

Posted by: Monkey | November 1, 2013

Beyond Socialized Sex



As I lie staring out the window at the vista of trees, birds chirping and the very first stirrings of the cicadas for the morning, my mind swirls coalescing and relaxing.

In the moments of focus and attention it returns again, as it has so often recently, to the question of sex and my sexuality.

Something had changed a while ago and I have sat and been in the not knowing what it was. The resulting confusion, fears and awkwardness that arose as my sexuality shifts into something new. It makes sense that this would be happening as my whole being is drawn to growth. Vibrating and humming, shaking loose of the ties that held me at the time useful and now restricted. Those important elements must be drawn up to match the body of development happening within me and sex is absolutely one of them.

Sex is a huge juggernaut within the human psyche. It is the source of endless creativity that has created empires, fought wars and driven human advancement at every level and it moves us all in one way or another. Its power is impossible to deny.

So what has culture and society taught me about sex?

That sex is a status, sex proves our desirability and acceptance into society. Sex is the source of our self-worth and so on.
If we aren’t getting some, then some-thing is probably wrong… right?

As a man I’m supposed to be wanting sex constantly, thinking about it constantly. That the numbers, both the number of women I’ve fucked and the hotness (on a scale of 1-10) of the woman, matters (at least to my male peers). I’m supposed to want sex this way or that way, depending on what group of people I’m hanging out with.
As a woman I imagine the details are different yet the impulse is the same. What does society tell you about sex?

All of this is the socialised mind hard at work. When we live in this space of gaining our meaning and purpose from others then what we value is dictated by those around us. Fitting in is the most important aspect of living and we may be so entrenched in this need to fit in that the question of what do we truly want at any given moment never actually surfaces.

And I discover that this is no longer satisfying to me. My whole being resists every single external impetus that tells me who I should fuck, when I should fuck and how I should fuck. Suspicion for any and all impulses permeates my self and the course of action arising is to withdraw. To let the dust settle into a new dawn where the choices made are self-authored and from within I decide how, who and when (with enthusiastic consent of course).

It’s scary, exciting and liberating.

Shackles of society falling away to find myself in a desert alone with a compass and a handful of maps chartered by those brave pioneers who have gone before me.


Sorry Louis, as much as I love you and find you hilarious… there is more than the simple crass urge you describe and there is a beyond that is free from the ignorant impulse that has us crying out “PUSSY” (in big pink letters).
The thing is we just gotta reach for it, do a lot of inner work and become suspicious of all that the world tells us.

Yeah only that.


Posted by: Monkey | October 22, 2013

Unity Crisis – Chapter 2: The Scene of a Crime


So it’s been a while since the first chapter. Writing a novel is way harder than I anticipated… I got stuck for a bit and at the same time deciding to publish chapter by chapter leaves no leniency in going back and changing details (because you have already read it!)

That being said I’m happy with where this is going even if it isn’t quite matching the image in my mind, it’s getting there.

The next chapter fleshes out the context for the story by introducing the reason for Demarcus’ call off his paradise island.

PDF:   Unity Crisis 2 – The Scene of a Crime

Epub: Unity Crisis 2 – The Scene of a Crime

Mobi: Unity Crisis 2 – The Scene of a Crime

After you have read, consider the following questions in where you would like the story to go next, I am opening myself as I stated before to the possibilities of co-creation.

1) Who do you feel you want to read more of? Stridor, Demarcus, Luisa, Roevinger, a ‘bad guy’ perspective? Someone new? (what would they look like if you could build a character?) Or even see Kalindra reappear?

2) Is there a need to know more about the technology of the world and how it functions?

3) The final scene introduced a shadowy character with some interesting attributes. Would you like to see more in the way of ‘superhuman’ attributes appearing in the book? Internally/Spiritually driven or technologically driven?

4) More action? What do you want next… a fight scene or a chase scene? Or more suspense and detail building?

5) More sex? Do you want to read Stridor and Roevinger get it on? Keep building tension? Demarcus get some more action? Or even Luisa?

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments, facebook me or email

Enjoy! 🙂

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