By Laurel Elders
There is a distinction. This distinction exists in the heart of every human being. It is a distinction that sets apart the human ego from the human egress into essence. It is the distinction between richness and riches.
An ego will pursue riches, but no ego can understand richness, for we cannot understand the essence of any virtue from the focal point of illusion. Only through truth do we see clearly.
In the days of Jesus Christ, ego reined unrestrained over a multitude of Western "leaders." These were not "leaders" as we view the concept today. These were people who held positions of power and used their power to fuel their thirst for greed. They used their ego's definition of power for destruction and harm.
Documented accounts of such evil include Herod the "Great." He was anything but great. Herod was so threatened by Jesus's birth he ordered the Massacre of the Innocent, killing any children two years or younger. Or how about his order to kill distinguished people after his death? His ego was deeply paranoid that people wouldn't mourn his death. He figured if he murdered people, other people would see those people crying. In his reasoning, people would believe they were crying because they were mourning Herod's death.
Herod was just one of many ego-driven leaders in power who defaulted to evil doing and heartless acts. The above represents the astronomical atrocities human egos were capable of when placed in positions of greed and power.
Are we so fortunate that today, greed has taken a different form? We are no longer ordered to be killed in the name of one's vanity to hang anyone we wish in the blink of an eye.
While we do continue to see greed fueling evil in sex trafficking, today, we also face a different breed of greed.
Today, we face a different monster. The face of greed has shapeshifted. Over the centuries, people have fought for rights, justice, and equity to balance the scales. Greed has had to become more hidden.
To avoid complete eradication, what has the form of greed had to turn into? What type of greed are we facing if we no longer face pure, blatant greed and evil in our leaders?
The answer seems simplistic. Minimal. Non-threatening. Perhaps that is why the monster we face in modern times has swished by us with minimal detection and almost leaves one wondering, "Are things off, or is it just in my imagination?"
The majority of problems humanity currently faces are not one of pitting good against evil. Humanity's prominent problems stem from bias, evil being the most extreme form of bias that can exist.
"A bias is as strong as it is linear. The less linear, the less the bias has a grip. Had we developed and adopted Integrative Intelligence decades ago, we would not be facing the man-made catastrophic large-scale impact we see today." - Integrative Intelligence Defined
The most potent form of bias we face, that is jetting the earth, people's lives, countries and communities out of balance is fueled by greed in the name of progress.
Greed is the ego's version of success and progress. The ego says, 'I want more for myself than I do for another.' While the human ego aches for more riches, its approach can never quench the deep thirst for richness, and so the hamster wheel of imbalance exponentially.
When we view greed through the lens of integrative intelligence, we see greed as just an element. It is a seductive egoic lust that is never satisfied and, therefore, spirals us out of balance with ourselves and the environment. We are living in times where one leader has a massive, large-scale impact. We live in a time when corporations are larger and more powerful than most of our governments.
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, greed is defined as "a selfish and excessive desire for more of something than is needed."
What happens when leaders are not driven by greed but driven to truly succeed? What is possible when leaders aren't driven by lust but by trust? What can occur when our leaders shift from seeking riches to leading through richness?
We have yet to find out. We've never had the opportunity to fully experience such leadership. Threatened egos have assassinated the just leaders of our past. Think Dr. King, Lincoln, and Gandhi. Isn't it time to evolve to learn how to flip script? Isn't it a time when just leadership could be the norm?
I have found that every bias, every greed, and every harmful human invention causing more harm than doing good has one causal source. The person involved lacks spiritual development. Spirituality connects us directly to the bigger picture. Gandhi, Einstein, Dr. King, Nelson Mandela, Abraham Lincoln and Mother Theresa were all motivated by the bigger picture of truth first. You cannot be both biased, trapped in linear reasoning, and connected to the bigger picture. It doesn't work that way. There is no need for riches when you are surrounded by richness.
Furthermore, once someone is spiritually rooted, they naturally become integratively intelligent; they live within the vast wisdom of interconnectivity and are elevated to a place within themselves where there is no need for greed.
We live in a day and age where someone can climb the corporate or political ladder and reach level ten and only be at level one or two in their spiritual development. It is high time to elevate, integrate, and innovate through that lens.
The articles provided here on Integrative Intelligence do not capture, nor claim to capture, the full breadth of human dynamics.
These articles offer only a glimpse into new possibilities when we become more integratively aware and develop our scope of wisdom.
There are many facets to a single prism. These are but a few facets to help inspire a deeper and broader exploration.