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THE SEARCH FOR EXPANDED CONSCIOUSNESS With the person-centered approach - page 10 / 14

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organizes systems where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Once

created, collective fields impact on other groups engaged in the same activity and

all break through to new knowledge or capacities. (These citings in Hamilton,

2004).

The italics in this section are mine. I highlighted them because it was a relief to

see that these scientists, philosophers and sociologists use words like magic, mysterious,

and grace. I believe that what makes the phenomenon of expanded consciousness so

confusing and inarticulate, is that its explanation depends on a different world view than

the one most of us hold. To understand it requires a “change of mind”, a new way of

seeing. Enough of us know, however, that when people gather in groups, where certain

conditions are facilitated, a kind of collective wisdom is generally predictable. That

wisdom, collective intelligence, or group mind may be capable of birthing a new social

or spiritual order of evolutionary proportions.

Facilitation of the Collective Wisdom

Although there is no final word on what collective wisdom is, there is plenty of

agreement that it exists and is a powerful force for change. There is a good bit of

consensus among the people working with and researching expanded

consciousness/collective wisdom about how to facilitate it. The few instructions are

simple but very challenging, with only slight disagreements about the minimal amount of

structure to impose. The instructions are strikingly similar to the conditions posed by Carl

Rogers as enhancing healthy human development.

Bohm suggests beginning a group with 20 or more people. My 30- plus years of

experience in groups teaches me that the group can be smaller and still achieve

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