The story beyond the I

In spirituality, especially in evolutionary spirituality that focuses on growth or self-development as a means to reach enlightenment or transcendence, there is this idea of transcending the self. But often it seems that the practitioners, rather than getting less egoic they tend to get more egoic, either neglecting the world around them focusing only on how self is evolving, or becoming domineering and basically full of themselves. No doubt do some of them possess deep insights into spiritual truths, it just seems like the step of truly transcending the self rather than just cleverly hiding or disguising it is a very hard thing to do.

What does it mean transcend the small self? What takes its place? A bigger self? In the integral version of developmental psychology, the lines of development show an ever increasingly complex self transcending and including the previous versions. That self transcends the contracted and self-centered ego, the voice that screams, “me! me! me!” and replaces it with a different song that is now concerned with not just me, but me + many other things. In a way the me has become decentralized… or has it? Or is it still at the center of everything, just with a wider vision?

Continue reading