Integral supposes that as we progress upwards through the various levels of being we can transcend and include those below. Of course, there is some truth in this - if we adopt the modern, liberal, scientistic mindset (‘orange’) then we still contain traces of our more ancient and less civilised selves.

However, it may be that these less civilised elements are in fundamental opposition to the later, ‘higher’ levels - there is nothing to say that they can sit together harmoniously within a unified whole.

The whole notion of pre/trans belies a progressive worldview, with the idea being that trans is preferable to pre.  

Wilber purports that many claims about non-rational states make a mistake he calls the pre/trans fallacy.

According to Wilber, the non-rational stages of consciousness (what Wilber calls "pre-rational" and "trans-rational" stages) can be easily confused with one another.

On Wilber's view, one can reduce trans-rational spiritual realization to pre-rational regression, or one can elevate pre-rational states to the trans-rational domain.

For example, Wilber claims that Freud and Jung commit this fallacy. Freud considered mystical realization to be a regression to infantile oceanic states. Wilber alleges that Freud thus commits a fallacy of reduction.

Wilber thinks that Jung commits the converse form of the same mistake by considering pre-rational myths to reflect divine realizations. Likewise, pre-rational states may be misidentified as post-rational states.Wilber characterizes himself as having fallen victim to the pre/trans fallacy in his early work.

Ken Wilber

The most fascinating item about such empirical studies is something that is often seen with 'pre' and 'post' situations - namely, both pre-X and post-X are non-X (for example, both preconventional and postconventional are nonconventional, or outside the conventional norms and rules), and thus they are often confused.

In such situations, 'pre' and 'post' will often use the same rhetoric and the same ideology, but in fact they are actually separated by an enormous gulf of growth and development. 

[Ken Wilber]
A Theory of Everything, p.23

The prerational religions were dominant in the past, in premodern times, but the transrational religions are on their way, destined to descend on a collective humanity with a global consciousness at their core.

[Ken Wilber]
A Theory of Everything, p.134

A careful reader will see that Wilber has considerable sympathy for many of the claims made by radical environmentalists and by people exploring nature-oriented religions. He understands that some people need to explore previously repressed areas in order to become better integrated.

Conceivably, he might even regard some of current interest in shamanism as a potentially promising development, provided that those practices are explored in the right spirit, i.e., with the goal of moving forward by first looping back, and in a way that does not require the sacrifice of critical forms of consciousness.

[Michael E. Zimmerman]
Ken Wilber's Critique of Ecological Spirituality

What were some of the artistic beliefs that the modernists adopted? Above all they embraced freedom, and they found it in the artistic forms and emotions of the primitive cultures of Africa, the Orient, the Americas and Oceania.

This act was the repudiation of all of the stylistic refinements that were the basis of 19th-century artistic endeavor.

On the one hand, primitivism represented the simplification of form, which was to become one of the hallmarks of modernism. This abstraction of form suggested that some essential structure, previously hidden by realistic technique, would come to light.

Art had, according to the modernists, become too concerned with irrelevant sophistications and conventions that detracted from the main purpose of art: the discovery of truth.

'History of Modernism: Modernism: Characteristics'

In theory, each new structure of consciousness integrates the previous structures into itself, creating a broader, more expansive structure that takes up the best elements of previous structures and does new and more creative things with them, while discarding all the elements of previous structures that don’t work.

Enchantment […]? That’s one of the things that, in Wilber’s theory, was discarded because it doesn’t work. Those who still perceive the world that way are either falling behind in the great onward march of evolution, or mistakenly headed the wrong direction.

Wilber warns at length about what he calls the Pre/Trans Fallacy, which is his term for anything that moves back toward the pre-personal stages instead of going forward to the transpersonal stages.

Any tradition of spiritual practice in the modern world that makes respectful use of myth and magic is considered by Wilber to be an example of the Pre/Trans Fallacy. That includes those of us who practice magic, of course, but it also includes anyone who seriously embraces any religion in its traditional form, as well as thinkers such as Carl Jung, whose attentiveness to the mythic dimensions of consciousness is in Wilber’s way of thinking wrongheaded, a throwback to a pre-personal stage of evolution.

From my perspective, the narrative structures of mythic thought aren’t a stage to be outgrown, they’re healthy and necessary elements of all human consciousness, just as much so as the discursive structures of rational thought.

Give the mythic structure its proper place and it’s easy to keep it in that proper place. Try to insist that you’ve outgrown myth, as Wilber does, and you can count on having it sneak up behind you so and playing merry hob with your oh-so-rational ideas, inserting mythic narratives into those ideas when you’re not looking.

[John Michael Greer]
‘Against Enchantment I: Ken Wilber’, Ecosophia

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