Integral Cinema Blog on Integral Life

Postings of Integral Cinema Project preliminary research findings can be found here and at Mark Allan Kaplan's Integral Life Integral Cinema Blog. Mark's Integral Life blog has received Integral Life's Editors Choice recognition for two months in a row.

Hollywood and the Integral Tipping Point

Hollywood is currently in a state of panic. While box office attendance is up, DVD sales have fallen through the floor and the traditional market streams and financial indicators are in a state of flux. To more clearly understand this situation I chose to look at four developmental lines in the social holon of the current American motion picture industry. The four lines I chose are the Techno-Economic Base (T-E), Business/Markets (B/M), Communication/Media (C/M), and Artistic/Aesthetic (A/A) lines of development. I used a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the lowest level of development and 10 being the highest. These numbers correlate to the first 10 altitudes of consciousness of Ken Wilber’s spectrum of worldviews, with 1 representing Infrared/Archaic and 10 representing Violet/Super-Integral Level 2 (Wilber, Pattern, Leonard, & Morelli, 2008, p. 90).

Reflecting on the current state of the industry, it seems to me that the Techno-Economic Base (T-E) of the industry is shifting from level 6 (Green/Pluralistic/Informational) to level 7 (Teal/Integral Systems/Trans-Informational or Virtual). This shift appears to be driven/co-created by a transition from separate/pluralistic media technologies and platforms (i.e.: Movies, TV, Gaming, Web, etc.) to more integrated, cross-media, and virtual technologies and platforms (i.e.: Material delivered/integrated across multiple convergent, immersive, and embedded mediums), represented by a shift from level 6 to level 7 in the Communication/Media (C/M) developmental line. As the nature of the medium is shifting, cinematic media artists are embracing these advances as a means to expand their artistic expression across these multiple platform environments. This in turn is shifting the Artistic/Aesthetic (A/A) line from level 6 to level 7 as well. While these three lines appear to be shifting in tandem, it also appears that the Business/Markets (B/M) line is stuck at level 5 (Orange/Rational), as the industry’s business community frantically tries to apply their old models of finance, distribution, and marketing to the emerging new techno-creative-communication environment (see chart below).

There are indicators of some potential shifts in the Business/Markets (B/M) line, including a major restructuring of Disney’s studio model to meet the changing media environment and the release of James Cameron’s Avatar, which appears to be attempting to cross the integral media threshold by offering content immersion (IMAX 3D), platform convergence (Theatrical/Game simultaneous release), and a foray into virtual aperspectivalism (Character-to-Avatar perspective shifts). It should be interesting to see if these forays will be part of a vertical rather than horizontal change. Either way, I believe the industry is poised at the edge of a tipping point between the relativistic/information age and the approaching integral/virtual age. Only time will tell if the American film industry will cross this threshold through a single major shift, or several smaller transitions, or a combination of both major and minor shifts, or if it will be a turbulent or peaceful transition. Since several members of the industry have already begun downloading the Integral Operating System (IOS) into their consciousness, I think we are in for a wondrous and wild ride.


Wilber, K., Pattern, T., Leonard, A., & Morelli, M. (2008). Integral life practice: A 21st century blueprint for physical health, emotional balance, mental clarity, and spiritual awakening. Boston: Shambhala.

American Motion Picture Industry Social Holon Sociograph

T-E = Techno-Economic Base
C/M = Communication/Media
A/A = Artistic/Aesthetic
B/M = Business/Markets

*Originally published at Integral Life.


Types are the variety of consistent styles that arise in various domains and occur irrespective of developmental levels. Types can overlap or be incongruous. As with the other elements, types have expressions in all four quadrants.

In the UL quadrant there are personality types. There are numerous systems that map the number of different personalities, including Keirsey (4 types), Enneagram (9 types), and Myers-Briggs (16 types). In this quadrant there are also the gender types of masculine and feminine. In general, individuals have access to both masculine and feminine qualities and thus tend to have a unique combination of traits associated with each type. In the UR quadrant there are blood types (A, B, AB, O) and William Sheldon’s well-known body types (ectomorph, endomorph, mesomorph). In the LR quadrant there are ecological biome types (e.g., steppe, tundra, islands) and governmental regime types (e.g., communist, democracy, dictatorship, monarchy, republic). In the LL quadrant there are types of religious systems (e.g., monotheism, polytheism, pantheism) and different types of kinship systems (e.g., Eskimo, Hawaiian, Iroquois, Omaha, Sudanese).

- Sean Esbjörn-Hargens, Ph.D. (2009). AN OVERVIEW OF INTEGRAL THEORY: An All-Inclusive Framework for the 21st Century. Integral Institute, Resource Paper No. 1, March 2009, pp.15.


In addition to levels and lines there are also various kinds of states associated with each quadrant. States are temporary occurrences of aspects of reality (lasting anywhere from a few seconds to days, and in some cases even months or years). They also tend to be incompatible with each other. For example, you cannot be drunk and sober at the same time, a town cannot experience a blizzard and a heat wave on the same day. Above are a few examples of the kinds of states associated with each quadrant.

- Sean Esbjörn-Hargens, Ph.D. (2009). AN OVERVIEW OF INTEGRAL THEORY: An All-Inclusive Framework for the 21st Century. Integral Institute, Resource Paper No. 1, March 2009, pp.13.

Levels and Lines


Within each of the four quadrants there are levels of development. Within the interior, Left-Hand quadrants there are levels of depth and within the exterior, Right-Hand quadrants there are levels of complexity. The levels within each quadrant are best understood as probability waves that represent the dynamic nature of reality and the ways different realities show up under certain conditions.

Additionally, each quadrant’s levels are correlated with levels in the other quadrants. For example, a goal-driven executive (UL) who has high blood pressure (UR) will most likely be found in a scientific-rational culture or subculture (LL), which usually occurs in industrial corporate organizations (LR). In this example, all of these aspects of the situation are occurring at the same level of complexity and depth within their respective quadrant and are therefore correlated at level five in figure above. The inclusion of levels is important because they allow us to appreciate and better interface with the realities associated with each quadrant. Each quadrant serves as a map of different terrains of reality. The levels within each quadrant represent the topographical contour-lines of that terrain. This helps us to identify the unique features of that particular landscape, which enables us to travel through it more successfully and enjoy the amazing vistas along the way.


Lines of development are another way to describe the distinct capacities that develop through levels in each aspect of reality as represented by the quadrants. So if levels are contour-lines on a hiking map for reality, then lines of development represent the various trails you can take to transverse the vast wilderness of human potential. For example, in the individual-interior quadrant of experience, the lines that develop include, but are not limited to, cognitive, emotional, interpersonal, and moral capacities. These capacities are often thought of as the multiple intelligences that each person has. The idea being that each of us is more developed in some areas than others. Integral theory uses a psychograph (below) to depict an individual’s unique assortment of development in various individual lines.

Similarly, a sociograph is used to represent the various lines of development within a family, group, culture, or society (Below).

The kinds of lines found in cultures include things like kinesthetic capacities, interpersonal maturity (e.g., absence of slaves, women’s rights, civil liberties), artistic expression (e.g., forms of music, government funding for the arts), cognitive or technological capacities, physical longevity (e.g., healthcare systems, diet), and polyphasic maturity. Polyphasic refers to a culture’s general access to different states of consciousness. For example, many indigenous cultures embrace access to and cultivation of different kinds of states of awareness while rational Western societies tend to emphasize rational waking consciousness at the exclusion of other modes of experiencing reality.

Here are some of the lines present in the four quadrants:

- Sean Esbjörn-Hargens, Ph.D. (2009). AN OVERVIEW OF INTEGRAL THEORY: An All-Inclusive Framework for the 21st Century. Integral Institute, Resource Paper No. 1, March 2009, pp.7-11.


According to Ken Wilber's ontology, being evolves in a four-fold way. That is, each of the four quadrants co-evolves with the other three.

The four quadrants are: Self (subjective being); Culture (intersubjective being); world (objective being); and systems (interobjective being). Or I-WE-IT-ITS. Or Intentional, cultural, behavioral, social.

So individual and collective subjective and objective being co-evolves or tetra-evolves. No aspect of being is isolated and alone, all four aspects of being tetra-mesh, co-influences and co-evolving the other.

(Adapted From Integral Wiki)

Star Wars and the Tetra-Evolution of American Cinema

During my studies into the application of Integral Theory to cinematic media, I attempted to look at an evolutionary or unfolding display moment in Hollywood filmmaking history through the lens of the three Integral Methodological Pluralism (IMP) principles of Nonexclusion, Unfoldment, and Enactment. The evolutionary moment in Hollywood filmmaking history I chose was the making of the first Star Wars (1977). A film that, according to most members of the various Hollywood knowledge communities, revolutionized the creative, technical, business, and critical evaluation aspects of the industry.

These areas of advancement represents the four general knowledge communities within the world of Hollywood movie making, each with their own, often conflicting, paradigms/practices/injunctions and constructs of what makes a “good” movie. There is the Cinematic Artists Community, which tends to view the goodness or success of the cinematic work by how much of the artist’s subjective vision (UL) is translated onto the screen. There is the Cinematic Technicians Community, which evaluates the degree of technical/material/objective (UR) quality of the cinematic work. There is the Cinematic Business Community, which appraises the success of the cinematic work by its market reach and profitability within the economic system (LR). Finally, there is the Cinematic Analytical Community (Critics, Historians, Theorists), which evaluates the quality of the cinematic work by the contextual effectiveness of its cinematic language (LL).

Conflicts often arise between these communities, and their seemingly contrary social practices/injunctions and the constructs generated by them. In the case of the first Star Wars (1977), the Cinematic Business Community (every studio) turned down the script at least once, even though many of the executives personally loved it (UL). The reasoning behind their choice was that their marketing models (LR) clearly showed that a science fiction film could not be profitable. What they failed to see was that George Lucas had crafted a cinematic vision that would ultimately transform the paradigms and constructs of all four knowledge communities (see below).

Finally, one of the executives at 20th Century Fox, Alan Ladd, Jr., was able to join Lucas in ENACTING a different world by seeing the other dimensions of Lucas’ work (taking a leap of NONEXCLUSION), and by heroically putting his job on the line for the script (George Lucas, personal communication, 1978). In the end, the film shattered box office records, transformed Hollywood’s marketing models; saved Fox from bankruptcy, and gave Ladd and Lucas their own companies (LR). It created a new genre (trans-genre) within the cinematic lexicon (LL) by including many different genres (Science Fiction, Westerns, War Movies, Mythical Adventures, etc.) into a cohesive blend that transcended all of them (UNFOLDMENT). Stars Wars also helped usher in the return of mythology to American cinema and American culture (LL) by blending mythological archetypes with modern and postmodern story and thematic elements. Lucas and his technical team also managed to advance cinematic technology (UR), making it easier to translate the creative visions of cinematic artists (UL). The effect of Star Wars’ genre hybridization, techno-creative advancements, and rebirthing of mythic cinema on the cinematic audience was something the traditional business and marketing models could not prehend (LR).

For additional reflections on the elements and conditions which made Star Wars such a unique and profound phenomenon, see my previous post and comments: My Cinematic Structuralism Emancipation at Integral Life.

*Previously published at Integral Life

My Cinematic Structuralism Emancipation

As I reflected on the importance of structuralism within Integral Theory (Wilber, Excerpt D), I remembered one of my first encounters with cinematic structuralism and how it had a profoundly emancipating effect on both my personal and professional life.

It was my third year at USC School of Cinematic Arts, and my very first class in cinematic expression. The teacher, famed animator, special effects artist, and IMAX pioneer Lester Novros, came into the crowded classroom and walked up to the blackboard. A hush fell over the room as Lester drew a rectangle on the board and then turned to look at the class. He paused for a moment and then dramatically told us that the rectangle on the board represented the motion picture frame, and that every element within that frame had the power to affect the viewer’s body, heart, mind, and spirit. With a twinkle in his eyes, he promised that he would teach us the rules/structures governing these elements of expression. My perception of myself, the cinema, and the world profoundly shifted as I sat in the back of that classroom and listened to Lester explain how the expressive elements of space, line, shape, tone, color, movement, rhythm, and contrast and affinity, influence the physiological (UR), psychological (UL), cultural (LL), and social/environmental (LR) experience of the cinematic audience.

For example, in the opening of the first Star Wars (1977) we see a relatively large spaceship fly across the screen. Suddenly, another spaceship appears in hot pursuit of the first ship. As the hull of this pursuit spaceship progressively enters the frame for an extended period of time, the viewer is surrounded by a deep rumbling sound that moves from the back of the theater to the front. This amalgamation of the visually expressive elements of open space (the ship extending beyond the edges of the frame), spatial contrast (difference in size between the two ships), and movement (the relative movement of the two ships), combines with the spatially-moving depth-representational sounds to produce a powerful synchronization of the senses that replicates the experience of actually sitting under this massive ship. In an instant filmmaker George Lucas stylistically and viscerally communicates a deep archetypal message to the viewer, the message that we are about to see an epic struggle against a great and mighty force.

When that first class was over, I walked out onto the quad (yes, quadrants are everywhere!) and everything within and around me seemed different. I noticed the bright sunlight streaming through the trees, the patchwork patterns of bright green lawns between winding pathways, and the feelings I was having in the midst of this spatial reality.

*Originally published on
Integral Life.

Hollywood Flatland

 While studying the Big Three Perspectives of I-WE-IT of Integral Theory, I started mentally playing with a memorable event from my days as a Hollywood “wunderkind,” and then suddenly, a perspective on the event I had not seen before shifted my entire understanding of the experience. This new insight rippled through a series of connected events and suddenly all my experiences in Hollywood came into a new and clear perspective for me. I felt a wave of deep physical release in my body as though a great unconscious burden and tension suddenly lifted off me.

THE EVENT: A few months after graduating from film school, I was house-sitting for a movie star and had a life transforming experience sitting by the pool of his estate. My graduate film was winning awards around the world, I had a high-powered Hollywood agent, and studio executives were courting me.

THE IT OF THE EVENT: I was reclining naked on a lounge chair by the pool, talking to my agent on the portable phone. The afternoon L.A. sun was hot and bright. I had mirrored sunglasses on and had an ice-cold margarita in my hand. The pool was a beautifully manufactured grotto of exotic plants, palm trees, rocks, waterfalls, and a series of crystal blue swimming pools and hot tubs. A beautiful young woman I had just met and slept with the night before was swimming naked in one of the pools.

THE WE OF THE EVENT: The conversation I was having with my agent on the phone was the same as all the rest; he was telling me what he thought I wanted to hear and I pretended that what he was saying was true. At the same time, I was watching the naked woman sensuously swimming in the pool. She smiled sweetly and looked back at me with “starry” eyes.

THE I OF THE EVENT: I suddenly felt an emptiness deep inside me as I listened to the voice of my agent and looked into the eyes of my new found lover. I felt as though I did not exist and that everything around me wasn’t real. Soon after this experience, I put all my possessions in storage, left Hollywood, and began my quest for meaning.

My current insight around this event came when I pondered my conversation with my agent from the perspective of the Hollywood client-agent cultural and social system. I realized that “I” as the client was actually a product (an IT) in the agents’ world. Then I realized that we were both seeing each other as objects to be manipulated, and not as subjects that could be understood (Wilber, 2000). Suddenly I saw all my similar Hollywood experiences in this new light and realized that all of us were objectifying each other and our own selves because we were caught in our own fears, which were being fueled by a larger system. In an instant, I felt as though a deep unconscious reservoir of regret, resentment, self-blame, and blaming of others that I was holding washed right out of me. A sense of gratitude swept through me as I perceived this experience as a moment of grace that was my wake up call to get out of the Hollywood Flatland before my I was totally reduced to an IT and lost forever!

Wilber, K. (2000). A brief history of everything (revised edition). Boston: Shambhala Publications.

*Originally published at Integral Life

A Spiral Dynamics Perspective on the Responses to President Obama Wining the Nobel Peace Prize

There has been an intense variety of responses to the announcement that the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to President Barak Obama "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples."

Here is my Spiral Dynamics meditation on this spectrum of responses to President Obama wining the Nobel Peace Prize:
  • “What a Joke” – Their truth is not my truth – Mythic/Blue
  • “It is Premature” – He has not done anything “concrete” yet – Rational/Orange
  • “What an affirmation” – He has brought hope and ushered in a climate more conducive to peace – Relativistic/Green
  • The Integral Response = AH SO…

Kosmic Groove

Kosmic groove...

a history of communal prehensions

and harmonic empathies

felt from within.

Ken Wilber
Excerpt C: The Ways We Are in This Together

Image: Grooves by KidSysco


In Integral Theory, Flatland is "...the attempt to reduce interiors to their exterior correlates (i.e., collapsing subjective and intersubjective realities into their objective aspects). This is often seen in systems approaches to the natural world, which represent consciousness through diagrams of feedback loops and in the process leave out the texture and felt-sense of first- and second-person experience."

- Sean Esbjörn-Hargens, Ph.D. (2009). AN OVERVIEW OF INTEGRAL THEORY: An All-Inclusive Framework for the 21st Century. Integral Institute, Resource Paper No. 1, March 2009, pp. 4.

The Big Three

As both of the Right-Hand quadrants (UR and LR) are characterized by objectivity, the four quadrants are also referred to as the three value spheres of subjectivity (UL), intersubjectivity (LL), and objectivity (UR and LR). These three domains of reality are discernable in all major languages through pronouns that represent first-, second-, and third-person perspectives and are referred to by Wilber as “the Big Three:” I, We, and It/s. These three spheres can also be characterized as aesthetics, morals, and science or consciousness, culture, and nature.

Integral theory insists that you cannot understand one of these realities (any of the quadrants or the Big Three) through the lens of any of the others. For example, viewing subjective psychological realities primarily through an objective empirical lens distorts much of what is valuable about those psychological dynamics. In fact, the irreducibility of these three spheres has been recognized throughout the history of Western philosophy, from Plato’s True, Good, and Beautiful to Immanuel Kant’s famous three critiques of pure reason, judgment, and practical reason to Jürgen Habermas’ validity claims of truth, rightness, and truthfulness.

- Sean Esbjörn-Hargens, Ph.D. (2009). AN OVERVIEW OF INTEGRAL THEORY: An All-Inclusive Framework for the 21st Century. Integral Institute, Resource Paper No. 1, March 2009, pp.3-4.

The Four Quadrants

According to integral theory, there are at least four irreducible perspectives (subjective, intersubjective, objective, and interobjective) that must be consulted when attempting to fully understand any issue or aspect of reality. Thus, the quadrants express the simple recognition that everything can be viewed from two fundamental distinctions: 1) an inside and an outside perspective and 2) from a singular and plural perspective. A quick example can help illustrate this: imagine trying to understand the components of a successful meeting at work. You would want draw on psychological insights and cultural beliefs (the insides of individuals and groups) as well as behavioral observations and organizational dynamics (the outsides of individuals and groups) to fully appreciate what is involved in conducting worthwhile meetings.

These four quadrants also represent dimensions of reality. These dimensions are actual aspects of the world that are always present in each moment. For instance, all individuals (including animals) have some form of subjective experience and intentionality, or interiors, as well as various observable behaviors and physiological components, or exteriors. In addition, individuals are never just alone but are members of groups or collectives. The interiors of collectives are known generally as intersubjective cultural realities whereas their exteriors are known as ecological and social systems, which are characterized by interobjective dynamics. These four dimensions are represented by four basic pronouns: “I”, “we”, “it”, and “its.” Each pronoun represents one of the domains in the quadrant model: “I” represents the Upper Left (UL), “We” represents the Lower Left (LL), “It” represents the Upper Right (UR), and “Its” represents the Lower Right (LR).

- Sean Esbjörn-Hargens, Ph.D. (2009). AN OVERVIEW OF INTEGRAL THEORY: An All-Inclusive Framework for the 21st Century. Integral Institute, Resource Paper No. 1, March 2009, pp.2-3.

Project Advisor Announcement: James Fadiman Ph.D.

James Fadiman Ph.D. has agreed to be an advisor on the Transpersonal and Integral Cinema Project. James is a celebrated author, psychological researcher, corporate consultant, and an adjunct professor at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, which he co-founded. He is also one of the founders of the transpersonal movement, one of the first lecturers at Esalen Institute, and one of the early pioneers in psychedelics research, along with Ram Dass and Timothy Leary. James’s areas of specialization are altered states of consciousness, creativity, human potential, personal and organizational problem solving, Sufi storytelling, transformative fiction, and transpersonal theory. You can learn more about James at:

Project Advisor Announcement: Bruce Block

Bruce Block has agreed to be an advisor on the Transpersonal and Interal Cinema Project. Bruce is an adjunct professor at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, where he has taught graduate level classes in visual structure for the past 30 years. His book, “The Visual Story,” now in its second edition, is used worldwide by students and professionals working in motion pictures, television, advertising and video game design. Bruce also teaches visual structure at the AFI and UCLA, and his seminars on visual structure have been presented to companies including PIXAR Studios, The Walt Disney Company, DreamWorks Animation, Nickelodeon Studios, Hasbro Interactive, Hewlett Packard, Blue Sky Studios, DirecTV and The Binger Film Institute. His credits include production and creative consulting on numerous film projects including As Good As It Gets, What Women Want, The Holiday, Alfie, Stuart Little, The Great Outdoors, Pretty in Pink, The Parent Trap, Father of the Bride I & II, and Baby Boom. You can learn more about Bruce at:

Project Advisor Announcement: Arthur Hastings, Ph.D.

Arthur Hastings, Ph.D. has agreed to be an advisor on the Transpersonal and Integral Cinema Projects. Arthur is a Professor at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology where he is the Research Director for the Institute and the Director of the William James Center for Consciousness Studies. He is also a former faculty Chair for the Residential programs, former Dean and President of the Institute, and a Past President of the Association for Transpersonal Psychology. Arthur’s areas of specialization are altered states of consciousness, parapsychology, research methods, and transpersonal theory. He has conducted pioneering research on audio brainwave entrainment, channeling, hypnotic trance induction, and the psychomantium experience. You can learn more about Arthur at:

Mark Allan Kaplan: Recipient of 2008 Integral Life Award

ICP Lead Researcher, Mark Allan Kaplan, is the recipient of the 2008 Integral Life Award! The IL Award is an annual merit-based scholarly award given by the Integral Institute. Mark received the award in recognition of his demonstrated potential and capacity to make a difference in the world through the application of integral principles in his personal, professional, and academic endeavors.

Cinematic Evolution

One of the most memorable days of my life was when motion picture director and editor Robert Wise spent the afternoon with me going over the rough cut of one of my films. As Bob went through every cut with me and shared his wisdom I kept thinking to myself “My God, the man who edited Citizen Kane (1941) is helping me edit my film!” I learned so much from Bob that day, both about filmmaking and about life. One of these “Wise” lessons was his sharing with me his perceptions about a possible connection between the evolution of consciousness and the evolution of the cinema.

Over his illustrious 60-year career, Bob observed that the perceptual consciousness of the cinematic audience appeared to advance along with the cinema in the ability to communicate more information, in more abstract forms, within shorter durations of time. He explained that when he first started in the film industry the motion picture audiences required very clear linear story structures, and that gradually throughout his career, the audiences seemed to develop the ability to more readily and quickly project meaning across discontinuous and non-linear cinematic structures.

To illustrate one aspect of this evolution, Bob used the example of a cinematic sequence that has a character driving to another character’s house for a meeting. In the old days filmmakers had to show the person driving the car, stopping the car, getting out of the car, walking up to the house, knocking on the door, and then going inside. Gradually over time, the audience has advanced to the point of being able to accept a direct cut from a person driving a car to them suddenly being inside someone’s house. Wise believed that these advancements in both cinematic expression and the perceptual consciousness of the cinematic audience were the product of an interdependent and co-evolutionary relationship between the cinema and the audience. This observation appears to concur with Jean Gebser’s (1986) contention that artistic movements and trends have a tendency to influence and be affected by the evolution of consciousness.

At the end of our time together, Bob was called away quickly, but before he left the editing room, he paused to tell me how wonderful my work was and then said, “I hope I helped you a little bit…” Of course, I profusely and sincerely thanked him, and as he walked off I felt a mysterious shift inside me. In that brief moment, it seemed as though I had received a kind of shaktipat, or life lesson energetic transmission, from this amazing man. After all the awards, honors and accolades, Bob Wise was still a sweet and deeply humble human being, and his living presence and example penetrated me in ways I still cannot describe. I will never forget that moment, and every moment I was blessed by his presence. In my heart and mind, I believe Bob Wise was a true Cinematic Bodhisattva.

Integral Cinema Project - Project Status

The Integral Cinema Project is currently in the theory building stage, exploring the application of Integral Theory to cinematic media development, production, and distribution, under the auspices of Integral Institute's and Fielding Graduate University's Certificate Program in Integral Studies.

Eli Stone and Transpersonal Television

There have been many wonderful television shows dealing with transpersonal themes over the years, including The Twilight Zone (Alternate Realities), Quantum Leap (Time Travel), The X-Files (Alien Encounters), Touched by an Angel (Angels), and Joan of Arcadia (Divine Guidance). There are also several superb transpersonal television shows currently on the air, including Lost (Metaphysical Realities), Life (Zen), Life on Mars (Time Travel), Heroes, Kyle-XY (Exceptional Human Capacities), and Eli Stone (Divine Guidance).

While all of these shows are excellent transpersonal television journeys, I believe Eli Stone must be singled out as one of televisions transpersonal masterpieces. The reason I believe Eli Stone deserves this mantle, is that it not only explores a transpersonal topic with great depth, grace, wit, and integrity, it also has the capacity to give the viewing audience a powerful experience of higher and illusive states of being. How often does a TV show induce a deep sense of grace, hope and faith in the face of life’s haunting mysteries? This is very rare…so I say, BRAVO to the creators of Eli Stone! But I also have to give a big BOO to the network (ABC) who never gave the show the chance it deserved and canceled this gem of television enlightentainment.