Center for Spiritual Inquiry and Integral Education

R. Michael Fisher
Spirituality and Higher Education (3)
by R. Michael Fisher - Friday, December 23, 2011, 07:07 AM

The latest version 2.0 of the original map in this series, I am now labeling as a "matrixial" and "integral version, a better corrective on the phallocentric view of human development, and thus a better model I think for a radical integral curriculum design. Of course, I have to leave things off these maps, they are just not big enough in format to include everything. So, in the long-run, one is encouraged to check out all the maps (i.e., See "Spirituality and Higher Education" in the prior Forum postings).



My daughter Vanessa responded to this when I sent it to her: "Interesting. Nice colors too... I'm curious how you are conceiving of this 'return' of the feminine. Obviously this is a concept in wide circulation these days. I'm curious to know more about how [Bracha L.] Ettinger sees it too. Is this a 'backwards' motion? Or is there a way to go forward and find the 'feminine'? Or do backwards and forwards not even make sense from this more matrixial view?

Wisely, my daughter points out that many evolutionary spirituality folks, including feminists in that circle, would not like to see any kind of over essentializing of the feminine, and specifically would not like to conceptualize the regaining of the feminine within a Romantical return to paradise, or an anti-progressive or anti-evolutionary going back to movement. I agree. In fact, I'd say the map above shows that backwards and forwards movements are not relevant. I responded in a quickie note to my daughter:

Love your curiousity around these questions... the map I have made ensures there is no 'return' actually in ontological terms, as Matrixial (pre-) and Matrixial (trans-) completely intersect, even though differentiated, it is more an 'awakening' or re-imagining to our roots in the matrixial (as core to Essence, Being, Spirit) that then have to go through the Phallic filtering... which, is at least the Western experience... then with good integration of Matrixial-2 and nondual discourse of the phallocentric domination... so, frame it in your own way, my work may help, and then see what others (like feminists or evolutionaries think)... in my mapping one doesn't necessarily have to get into the strong discoruse of the 'sacred feminine' (which is a unique and powerful discourse... of which Ettinger herself only barely enters and mostly doesn't... Ettinger remains more aloof from overly-spiritual discourse framings, yet she provides a 'feminine' ground of being one could say... in relationality... a radical relationality of non-I/I (baby and mother) and pre-personal and trans-personal in their relationship itself--which integrates all of these notions and realities in some obfuscate way that I cannot easily articulate. And there is no simple pre/trans fallacy (a la Wilber) in Ettinger's work as I see it. She just has a much more nuanced relational sense of trans- (Matrixial-2). Admittedly, I am on shaky ground still understanding her work and its full implications in an overall integral curriculum design.