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Give Us Ten Minutes... We’ll Give You the Kosmos

Original illustration from our Winter 1999 issue, by Oliver Williams

According to Ken Wilber, the biggest challenge facing our world is not the income gap between rich and poor but the gap in levels of consciousness. “Only by honoring and acknowledging all the various levels in all four quadrants [of the Nesting Universe] can a more generous and inclusive vision be found.”

This article first appeared in the Winter 1999 issue of Spirituality & Health. Go ahead. Check your watch. Let’s see if we can pull this off. The next 10 minutes may change the way you think about evolution, psychology, ecology, even God. For good and ill, our modern world has been shaped by this view from science. Now, acclaimed philosopher Ken Wilber points toward a healthier, more useful balance. The cosmos is merely the physical universe. Here, we’re talking The Big K... everything from matter to mind to Spirit. We hope you’ll come away feeling that the half of the Kosmos that tends to get crushed flat by modern science — your emotions, your dreams, your spirituality — actually provides the high ground we need to make sense of our lives. But first let us give the credit to Ken Wilber, author of such monumental works as Sex, Ecology, and Spirituality, The Marriage of Sense and Soul (one of Al Gore’s new favorites), and, with Tony Schwartz, A Brief History of Everything. Wilber, a former biochemist, lives in a mountain aerie outside Boulder, Colorado, where he rises each morning a …

Stephen Kiesling is a former Olympic rower, cocreator of the Nike Cross Training System, and editor at large of Spirituality & Health. A 35th anniversary edition of The Shell Game: Reflections on Rowing and the Pursuit of Excellence has just been published.

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