On Monday the Washington DC-based Nation Journal published an extensive article on the “polarization movement” entitled: The War On Partisanship, How fighting polarization became its own cause. The article describes the efforts of a wide variety of nonprofits who are working to overcome hyper-partisan polarization and gives special attention to the work of The Institute for Cultural Evolution. Here are the paragraphs in which ICE president Steve McIntosh is quoted:
“The Boulder-based Institute for Cultural Evolution is taking a more philosophical approach to polarization. The group is publishing papers, such as one called “Depolarizing the American Mind,” and holding conclaves with “influencers” to brainstorm solutions for what Steve McIntosh, the group’s president, describes as a cultural problem. “Our technique is to find existential problems that can’t be solved at the level of thinking that created them—Einstein’s famous quote,” he says. “Those existential problems are where openings for new ways of thinking exist. …
“Other anti-polarization activists are gauging success differently. At the Bipartisan Policy Center, Jason Grumet cited the group’s recommendations for health care reform that ended up in the bipartisan-supported doc-fix deal earlier this year. At the Institute for Cultural Evolution, the focus is more on “influencing the influencers,” according to president Steve McIntosh. The group recently put on a political polarization conclave at Esalen, the storied spiritual resort in Big Sur that offers renowned massages and nude hot springs, footing all the expenses for the two dozen participants—including Blades, Joyner, Blankenhorn, and Civil Politics executive director Ravi Iyer. For them, success means launching their philosophy of depolarization “into the national mind, into what’s being discussed by pundits, and what’s being tracked by the media,” McIntosh says. “We’d like David Brooks to be able to say, ‘Here’s this interesting idea about a future left and a future right that’s a fresh way of thinking about the problem of polarization.’ ” (The fact that I wrote a story about one of their conferences a few months ago in National Journal makes a difference, too, he says.)”
We invite you to read the entire article at this link: http://www.nationaljournal.com/s/91684/war-partisanship?mref=home
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From Developmental Politics: “The higher purposes which we recognize as *transcendent* have a kind of magnetic power that draws us forward. As Oxford philosopher Iris Murdoch wrote, ‘we are spiritual creatures, attracted by excellence and made for the Good.’”
Emerson’s insight, that “every natural fact is a symbol of some spiritual fact,” reveals the connection between exterior physical energy and interior ‘value energy.’ In fact, ‘the good’ in itself can be most accurately conceived of as an upward current of perfecting energy.
Although every infant begins life with the same basic form of biological “human nature,” the extent to which their consciousness develops is largely determined by the culture in which they are raised. Human nature itself thus evolves through the evolution of human culture.
Managing the polarity of liberal and conservative values is not simply a matter of meeting in the middle or compromising. Working to both challenge and *support* our political opponents is a new approach to politics that is pragmatic and transformational at the same time.
On the new Growing Down Podcast, Jeremy Johnson, Ryan Nakade, Matt Hudkins, and I discuss the intersection of progressive politics and developmental politics. We focus on how progressive politics can benefit from an integral perspective. https://anchor.fm/growing-down/episodes/3--Developmental-Politics-ft--Steve-McIntosh-Interview-Series-ec5914/a-a1qcs3g