Some integral thinkers may say that they’ve evolved beyond creeds. I think what they are actually telling us, probably subconsciously, is that they think they’ve evolved beyond community and among collaborations with people different from themselves. They think they’re better than pew-sitters and bead-twirlers.
Integral thinkers who don’t like creeds are saying that they don’t want anyone to tell them what to think or do or behave; they want radical autonomy. Unfortunately, there’s a price to pay if they resist the structures necessary for community: loneliness, alienation, sorrow. The suffering that can result from alienation from creeds goes beyond mere loss of human friendship; at a profound level, it is a symptom of alienation from the Word of God (or: Form of Spirit/Reality).
An Integral creed? Really? If the thought troubles you, call it a Konstruct. At the Meusio, we call it a Profession of Faith. It’s a profession that can be interpreted differently at any level of consciousness & a variety of different philosophies. It brings people together.
And if you’re an Integral Buddhist, don’t try to pin your resistance to creeds or professions on your religion. Buddhism has plenty of doctrines (The Three Universal Truths, The Four Noble Truths, The Noble Eightfold Path, etc.). So get real. It’s not Buddhism that is opposed to expressing truth through verbal pointing-out-instructions and verbal formulations, it’s YOU. What’s up with that?
A Profession of Faith is not Absolute Truth. It is a pointer to Truth, which as philosophers will tell us appears differently to different people looking at different aspects of it. Integral thinkers have a sophisticated, jargon-filled lexicon for analyzing epistemology, and I think it’s wonderful. But my point is simple enough that a child who has heard the story about the blind men and the elephant can see the truth of it.
Our Profession is designed to bridge the gaps between the First Tier, Second Tier, and Third Tier. In plain language, it’s designed to give the Meusio community a way of bringing people together who orient themselves to an unqualified and ineffable reality through stories of a concrete nature, stories of a subtle nature, and stories of a very subtle nature (so subtle it can’t be expressed in words).
In terms of AQAL’s altitudes, the mythic-membership believers who feel at home at Amber can feel and think dynamically about the concreteness that connects them to their Traditions; the construct-aware integralists who feel at home at Turquoise can appreciate and appropriate the subtlety that connects them to a meta-map embracing all the Traditions as well as modern (scientific) and postmodern (pluralistic multiculturalism) wisdom. And the witness-residers at Ultraviolet can accept the arising concreteness and subtlety of the Profession of Faith as a connection to the Wordless and the Word co-present with All-That-Arises.
The Profession of Faith of the Meusio is not exactly a philosophical analysis of anything (we have the Twelve Tenets for that, plus Integral Theory in general). It is a prayer. It is psychoactive. It’s transformative, enactive, presencing. If you don’t believe it, say it anyways and then contemplate the difference in your state of consciousness.
Why is the Profession of Faith written in both English and Lingua-U? Because those are the author’s languages of fluency, and he is writing what he knows. Already Joe Perez has translated it into English solo. Eventually there will be translations to other languages.
What people who consider themselves fans of Integral Theory ought to realize is that the philosophy is so attractive because it is a map of human nature based on hundreds of pre-modern, modern, and postmodern maps of human nature. The Profession is also a map, more or less concordant with IT’s map, but full of linguistic subtlety. In a seemingly rootless or “post-truth” world where people twist words to try to make them mean their opposite, it’s refreshing to begin to see language getting anchored in a subtle cosmology.
To summarize: If you don’t like creeds, think of the Profession as a philosophical and metalinguistic construct. Recite it until memorized. Make it a mantra and let the energy of the words help to subtly create the reality it describes. And let it connect you to community… and, naturally, to God or the One or Emptiness or Waakan Taanka, the Great Mystery.
As of October 1, 2018, the Meusio recognizes Alternative Professions of Faith for membership in the organization.