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The Second Enlightenment First Meeting

Here are the Attendees of the First Planning Meeting for the Second Enlightenment (San Francisco, Sept 2011)

At this first launching meeting for the ideas and concepts of a new second enlightenment period, the individuals below were also introduced to the dialectical meta-systemic thinking breakthroughs of Otto Laske. The goal of this first meeting was to introduce dialectical meta-systemic thinking breakthroughs to the attendees unfamiliar with it and to build a global training "escalator" for this new thinking skill because of its importance to the future of humanity.

The ongoing development of the ideas for a great second enlightenment period has been carried on by the Universe Spirit website and many of the individuals below in their own ways.

John Stewart has been instrumental in this ongoing process.


John Stewart is an Australian-based evolutionary theorist and activist who is a core member of the Evolution, Complexity, and Cognition Research Group of the Free University of Brussels.

As an evolutionary theorist, his main focus has been on the trajectory of evolution. His work on the directionality of evolution and its implications for humanity has been published in a number of key papers in international science journals. These include papers on the potential for humans to enhance their psychological capacities through the future evolution of consciousness.

He is the author of the internationally acclaimed book Evolution's Arrow: the Direction of Evolution and the Future of Humanity. In 2008 he was a keynote speaker at the first international scientific conference on “The Evolution and Development of the Universe,” held in Paris.

As an evolutionary activist, he uses a science-based understanding of the trajectory of evolution to identify how humanity must evolve if we are to continue to succeed in evolutionary terms. He has summarized his approach in The Evolutionary Manifesto. The Manifesto demonstrates the potential of an evolutionary worldview to provide meaning, purpose, and direction for human existence. It shows that humanity will need to intentionally advance the evolutionary process on Earth if it is to participate positively in the future evolution of life in the universe. This will involve intentionally re-organizing our political and social systems and further developing our consciousness and cognition.

 Otto Laske is the author of Measuring Hidden Dimensions of Human Systems, which is quite possibly the leading book on integral, dialectical thinking for complex systems. Otto is a theoretician of adult development. In 1999 he founded the Interdevelopmental Institute (IDM), in Gloucester, MA, USA, of which he is currently the Director. Otto’s studies at the Frankfurt School (1956-66) with Th. W. Adorno and M. Horkheimer, and the Kohlberg School (1992-1999) with R. Kegan, K. Fischer, H. Gardner, and M. Basseches have allowed him, since 1999, to focus on the intrinsic relationship of adult cognitive and social-emotional development, detailed in his two-volume book entitled Measuring Hidden Dimensions (IDM Press 2005, 2008). His theoretical work is found at www.interdevelopmentals.org. For 3 reviews of Measuring Hidden Dimensions of Human Systems, click here.

Anodea Judith, Ph.D., is the founder and director of Sacred Centers. She holds Master's and Doctoral degrees in Psychology and Human Health along with lifelong studies of healing, mythology, history, sociology, systems theory, and mystic spirituality. She is also a world-class author and speaker on the interpretation of the chakra system as a template for our times. Through her decades of writing and teaching on this subject, she sees the chakra system as a simple and elegant map for the interface between personal and collective evolution. Her books have examined this system as a template for global evolution (WAKING THE GLOBAL HEART), as a model for Western psychology (EASTERN BODY, WESTERN MIND), and as a philosophical model (WHEELS OF LIFE).

 Michael Dowd is a veteran sustainability activist and big history / big integrity evangelist. An enthusiastic and outspoken religious naturalist, he is the author of the bestselling bridge-building book, Thank God for Evolution: How the Marriage of Science and Religion Will Transform Your Life and Our World (Viking 2008 / Plume 2009), which was endorsed by 6 Nobel Prize-winning scientists and other science luminaries, including noted skeptics, and by religious leaders across the spectrum.

Michael and his wife, Connie Barlow, an acclaimed science writer and gifted evolutionary educator, permanently travel North America and have addressed more than 1,500 religious and non-religious groups since 2002 — ranging from Unitarian Universalists and secular high school, college, and university students, to Catholic, Protestant, and Evangelical Christian churches, to New Thought, New Age, IONS, and Integral groups. They show how the science-based history of everything and everyone can be interpreted in ways that inspire people to cooperate across political and religious differences in service of a just and thriving future for all.

In December 2010 Rev. Dowd hosted the acclaimed conversation series, "The Advent of Evolutionary Christianity," and in June 2011 he and Connie launched a 5-week online course, titled "Evolutionize Your Life."

Celebrated by liberals and conservatives alike and uniquely gifted at building bridges between believers and non-believers, Michael shares “The Great Story” — humanity’s common creation story — in ways that uplift and expand heart, mind, and soul. His passion is showing how a sacred view of death, human nature, and the trajectory of big history can inspire and empower each of us to live with greater integrity, joy, and zest for life.

Michael and Connie are co-creators of the leading Religious Naturalism / Epic of Evolution educational website: TheGreatStory.org and they blog at EvolutionaryTimes.org. Michael also blogs at EvolutionaryChristianity.com/blog and ThankGodforEvolution.com

Sean EsbjÜrn-Hargens, Ph.D., is a Professor and founding Chair of the Integral Theory Program at John F. Kennedy University in Pleasant Hill, California. He is founding Director of the Integral Research Center, which supports graduate and post-graduate mixed methods research. In addition, he is the founding Executive Editor of the Journal of Integral Theory and Practice. Recently, he co-founded and co-organizes the biennial Integral Theory Conference, which began in 2008.

Sean is a leading scholar-practitioner in Integral Theory. He has worked closely with Ken Wilber for a decade operationalizing the integral (AQAL) model in multiple contexts. He is a founding member of Integral Institute and currently serves as their Vice President of Applications and Research. He is currently the most published author applying the Integral model to a variety of topics: education, sustainable development, ecology, research, intersubjectivity, science and religion, consciousness studies, and play. His articles have appeared in academic journals such as the Journal of Consciousness Studies, World Futures, ReVision, and Journal of Humanistic Psychology. Sean co-edited Ken Wilber’s book The Simple Feeling of Being and co-authored an 800-page book with environmental philosopher Michael Zimmerman: Integral Ecology: Uniting Multiple Perspectives on the Natural World. Recently, he co-edited the anthology Integral Education: New Directions for Higher Learning and edited the ground-breaking anthology Integral Theory in Action: Applied, Theoretical, and Constructive Perspectives on the AQAL model. He is currently working on a number of articles and books.

Sean has over twenty years of leadership experience, always serving in multiple major roles simultaneously. His passion as a leader comes from his love of being alive, his commitment to looking directly at reality without blinking, and his desire to increase people’s experience of intimacy with Being. He is a practitioner within both Tibetan Buddhism (Shangpa Kagyu linage) and A. H. Almaas’ the Diamond Approach. Recently, he has begun to explore the Faery tradition as well. He lives in Sebastopol, California on five acres of stunning redwoods with his wife and two daughters.

Jonathan Gustin, MFT, is a meditation teacher, purpose guide, and psychotherapist with offices in San Francisco and San Rafael. He is the founder of Integral Awakening Center (www.integralawakeningcenter.com) and has taught throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, at places such as: Spirit Rock, Green Gulch, CIIS, JFK University, The Non-Dual Wisdom and Mental Health Conference, iEvolve, Bay Area Integral, Marina Counseling Center, Bank of Marin, Drew High School,  iRestInstitute, and Vajrapani Institute.

Jonathan has co-taught with human potential pioneer George Leonard, Buddhist activist Joanna Macy and depth psychologist Bill Plotkin. Jonathan teaches Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, Mind-Body Medicine, and Integral Life Practice at San Francisco Kaiser Permanente.

In 2000, Jonathan also founded Green Sangha, a spiritually engaged environmental activist organization with chapters in the East Bay, Marin County, and San Francisco, and is featured in the movie documentary “Renewal,” a film on spiritual communities' responses to environmental challenges.

 Dustin DiPerna is Educational Director of the Center for World Spirituality in San Francisco. He also serves as Director of Integral Affairs at the World Council of Religious Leaders. He is author of two books to be released later this year, Developmental Religious Pluralism: An Introduction to Integral Religious Studies and The Heart of Conscious Evolution: Toward a Model of Spiritual Development for an Integral Age. Dustin has been a close student of Integral Philosopher Ken Wilber since 2004 and currently practices in the lineage streams of Mahamudra and Dzogchen under the guidance of Daniel P. Brown. He received his undergraduate degree from Cornell University and is currently pursuing a Master of Liberal Arts Degree in Religion through Harvard University.

 Malena Gamboa is a visionary with a background in promotions, advertising, and design. Since 2002, she has spearheaded promotional campaigns for both small and larger boutiques in the Los Angeles area.  She has consulted, led, and overseen various on-air promo spots for Telemundo and NBC, including the first-ever cross-cultural campaign for the 2004 Olympic Games.

In 2009 she launched the We On Earth Organization, a not-for-profit organization established to draw greater awareness to environmental and humanitarian global issues. In 2010, Malena co-founded Global Resolutions Organization with Marta Mobley, in partnership with the New Media Foundation. Together they are launching The Global Resolutions Initiative and the "I resolve" campaign, a call-to-action campaign that re-brands New Year's Eve resolutions in a strategic effort to promote and usher in deeper global awareness of our interconnectedness and a sustainable world. Malena is the Chair and Producer of the Midnight Rose New Year's Eve celebration. She is also a dedicated proponent of social and environmental transformation and a member of the Integral Think Tank.

 Vidyuddeva (Vid Deva) is an executive coach who, in partnership with Stagen Institute, is pioneering new integral methodologies engaging our shared humanity and guiding business leaders in the discipline of sculpting the passionate purpose of their lives into the art of being freely and fully alive.

As a Zen Priest, Biblical Mystic and Tantric Evolutionary he integrates Eastern and Western wisdom traditions with constructive developmental, somatic, and archetypal psychology.

Vidyuddeva works closely with leading teachers from various world religious traditions including Zen, contemplative Christianity, and Jewish Kabbalah as well as with philosopher Ken Wilber. He has been organizing and leading spiritual communities with a focus on "God's glory is the human being fully alive" for the last fifteen years. He is a core faculty member of the iEvolve Global Practice Community and was one of the spiritual teachers comprising the Integral Spiritual Center.

As a somatic artist, Vidyuddeva is an avid practitioner of martial arts, qi gong, and bodywork.

Terry Patten is a leading voice in the emerging fields of integral evolutionary leadership and spirituality. In his cutting-edge writings, talks, and teachings, he not only inspires transcendental awakening, love, and freedom, but also calls us to accept and incarnate our full humanity. This expresses itself in a profound sense of purpose, spiritual inspiration, and evolutionary activism.

He worked with Ken Wilber and a core team at Integral Institute to develop Integral Life Practice, which distills ancient and modern practices into an intelligent contemporary transformational lifestyle.

He hosts the acclaimed teleseminar series, Beyond Awakening: The Future of Spiritual Practice, http://beyondawakeningseries.com which has spawned a large international community. There, he has held a series of dozens of ground-breaking conversations with leading-edge spiritual teachers ranging from Ken Wilber to Ram Dass, from Andrew Cohen to Adyashanti, and from Byron Katie to Steve McIntosh on how spiritual practice is evolving to help conscious individuals rise to the evolutionary challenges of our global crises.

Terry is a faculty member in the Integral Executive Leadership programs at Notre Dame University, a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Integral Theory and Practice, and serves on the board of the Wellsprings Institute for Neuroscience and Contemplative Wisdom. He holds degrees from the University of Michigan and John F. Kennedy University.

Earlier, for 15 years, he lived immersed in a life of intensive spiritual practice in the monastic setting of Vision Mound Seminary with the great spiritual master Adi Da Samraj. There, he was a founding editor of the award-winning Laughing Man magazine. Upon leaving that ashram he founded the catalog company Tools For Exploration, which defined the field of consciousness technologies. While at the helm of Tools, he co-developed a series of biofeedback devices and psychoacoustic recordings, including the Institute of HeartMath's original widely-used heart-rate variability monitor.

Terry is also a social entrepreneur involved in supporting restorative redwood forestry. As an entrepreneur and consultant, he has worked for almost thirty years to help leaders bring higher consciousness into practical actions that transform complex human systems. He is also a teacher, coach, and consultant who travels widely, challenging and connecting leading-edge individuals and organizations worldwide.

An Integral coach, consultant, teacher, and author of four books, Terry lives in Marin County near San Francisco, CA. He is the senior writer and co-author, with Ken Wilber, Adam Leonard, and Marco Morelli, of Integral Life Practice: A 21st-Century Blueprint for Physical Health, Emotional Balance, Mental Clarity, and Spiritual Awakening. His 8-session course, Integral Spiritual Practice guides students step-by-step in establishing a heart-centered, do-able daily integral practice. His personal websites are http://gobeyondawakening.com, http://theispcommunity.com and http://integralspiritualpractice.com.


Lawrence Wollersheim is one of the directors of the Universe Institute and Universe College. He is also the Executive Director of Universe Spirit (formerly known as Integrative Spirituality,) an organization that has helped to birth the new Universe Worldview and the Universe Spirituality movement.

For 18 years Lawrence was also a managing director at FACTNet Inc., (www.factnet.org) a non-profit educational organization that is the oldest Internet resource for victims of cults and abusive religious practices who are seeking information and recovery. Lawrence was mentored for over 20 years by Dr. Margaret Singer, Professor Emeritus at UC Berkeley, who was, before her passing, the world’s leading authority on mind-control, destructive religious practices and cults.

Over a 32-year period, both before and during his tenure at FACTNet, Lawrence was involved in a series of lawsuits against the infamous Scientology cult. His success in these lawsuits against Scientology established important new legal precedents on freedom-of-thought and informed consent in alleged religious settings. These new legal precedents are now part of the first-year constitutional law studies of many US law students. To date, Lawrence has been the only individual to ever successfully sue and collect from the Scientology cult.

As a social advocate, Lawrence also helped to win the largest California SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation) lawsuit to date against an organization that was using excessive and unfair litigation tactics to financially overwhelm, harass and intimidate an under-funded non-profit social advocacy organization. His SLAPP legal precedent has been a powerful legal aid to all non-profit organizations in legal battles with big corporations filing meritless lawsuits designed to bankrupt their less wealthy opponents.

In addition, Lawrence spent over 20 years as the founder and managing director of HealthKeeper Inc., a software company specializing in assisting dieters, diabetics, and individuals with cardiovascular problems related to weight and nutrition. At HealthKeeper, Lawrence invented the NutriCode, which is a colored bar code that allows the user to understand a food label’s nutritional content and its impact on their daily diet goals without having to do any math. From his various experiences, Lawerencehas an extensive 30-year background in both day-to-day business operations and information technology, which he is able to draw from for his work in the non-profit, for-profit, and social advocacy sectors.


Here are the original agenda notes for the planning of the Second enlightenment and its first meeting.


For much more on dialectical meta-systemic thinking also see this page!

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  • Lawrence Wollersheim

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