Integral Institute

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The Integral Institute is a think-tank founded in 1998 by American author Ken Wilber. The purpose of the Institute is to gather and attempt to integrate the various viewpoints found in a number of major fields of knowledge.[1] For example, the Integral Institute currently has a number of branches including Integral psychology, Integral business, Integral politics, Integral medicine, Integral education, Integral ecology and sustainability,[2] Integral law and criminal justice, Integral art, and Integral spirituality.

This attempt to integrate the knowledge base of a particular field is based on the notion that differing opinions are often true but partial versions of actual reality. Various schools of thought in a particular subject, then, rather than being winner-take-all competitors, are seen as unique but partial contributors to a more realistic or Integral whole. These schools of thought can be likened to the parable about the blind men standing around the elephant each describing what they feel - one feels the elephant's feet, one feels the ears, the trunk, etc. Integral theory, in a nutshell, says that these viewpoints can be integrated to create a more complete and accurate version of reality.

Integral Institute outreach is occurring through a variety of projects. These include the Integral Institute Workshop Series, Integral Naked, Integral Life Practice, Integral University, and the Integral Spiritual Center. Notable members include Stuart Davis, Alex Grey, Deepak Chopra, Michael Murphy, Roger Walsh, Don Beck, Jon Kabat-Zinn, and Ed Kowalczyk (from the band Live).

Integral Research Center[edit]

The Integral Research Center provides support for global-community scholar-practitioners in the field of integral research through:

  • research projects
  • publications
  • conferences and symposia
  • grants
  • forums
  • resources
  • courses
  • fieldwork

The San Francisco Bay Area-based think-tank specializes in interdisciplinary and mixed-methods approaches to addressing complex, 21st-century challenges in service of planetary flourishing (i.e., ecological resilience, social well-being, and actualizing human potential).

Dr. Sean Esbjörn-Hargens founded the Integral Research Center in 2008; he served as research director until 2012, and continues to serve as a senior researcher as of 2015. Nick Hedlund-de Witt (Institute of Education), who served as research coordinator from 2008, is the think-tank's current director. Other key members of the international research team include Annick Hedlund-de Witt (Delft University of Technology), Zachary Stein (Harvard University), Gary P. Hampson (Palacký University, Olomouc), Karen De Looze (Free University of Brussels), Gilles Herrada, and Lauren Tenney.[3]

Integral Spiritual Center[edit]

Integral Spiritual Center began as a collaborative endeavor bringing together respected spiritual teachers in the world today, who, in addition to fully embracing their own particular paths, came together to explore a trans-path path to the future. Through three teachers' gatherings, three seminars, numerous one-day events, dozens of conference calls, and a web presence, ISC has worked to "nourish the vision of Integral spirituality" and share it with thousands of practitioners around the world.[4]


Since 2008 the institute has published a quarterly Journal of Integral Theory and Practice in print and electronic editions.[5]


External links[edit]