Islamic Garden

Islamic Garden
Islamic Garden in Lausanne, Switzerland

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The Integral context for al-Fatiha

Ken Wilber, in his book, the Integral Vision, provides a context for an Integral Psychology. Since this is the beginning of an approach towards an Integral Psychology of Islam, and since the final message of Allah was sent for all humankind, it is relevant to look at al-Fatiha from an Integral perspective. Ken Wilber maps out a model of moral development that is very relevant to the Siratal Mustaqim:

"Egocentric, Ethnocentric and Worldcentric

"To grasp what is involved with levels or stages, let's use a very simple model possessing only 3 of them. If we look at moral development, for example, we find that an infant at birth has not yet been socialized into the culture's ethics and conventions; this is called the preconventional stage. It is also called egocentric, in that the infant's awareness is largely self-absorbed. But as the young child begins to learn its culture's rules and norms, it grows into the conventional stage of morals. This stage is also called ethnocentric, in that it centers on the child's particular group, tribe, clan or nation, and it therefore tends to exclude those not of its group. But at the next major stage of moral development, the post-conventional stage, the individual's identity expands once again, this time to include a care and concern for all peoples, regardless of race, color, sex, or creed, which is why this stage is also called worldcentric.

Thus moral development tends to move from "me" (egocentric) to "us" (ethnocentric) to "all of us" (worldcentric) - a good example of the unfolding waves of consciousness."

Just to put all of my remarks in context, for me Islam is a universal faith. The essence of Islam, then is also a universal faith and hence must demonstrate a worldcentric ethic.

~ Excerpted from "The Integral Vision" by Ken Wilber, 2007, p. 34

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