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No Boundary: Eastern and Western Approaches to Personal Growth Paperback – February 6, 2001

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 149 pages
  • Publisher: Shambhala; Reprint edition (February 6, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781570627439
  • ISBN-13: 978-1570627439
  • ASIN: 1570627436
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #170,374 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Ken Wilber is one of the most important pioneers in the field of consciousness in this century."—Deepak Chopra

"The most sensible, comprehensive book on consciousness since William James."—Dr. James Fadiman, President, Association for Transpersonal Psychology

"No Boundary does for this generation what Alan Watts' writings did for an earlier one. It brings the most difficult subject of all—nature of consciousness—into an easily grasped presentation that is both elegant and simple."—John White, editor of Kundalini, Evolution, and Enlightenment

From the Inside Flap

A new, easy-to-grasp map of human consciousness against which the various therapies from both Western and Eastern sources are introduced. Designed to help individuals understand the practice of each therapy.

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Customer Reviews

This book is a great guide to transformation.
John Paton
If you own these three books you will have a good overview of Wilber's most important ideas without a lot of overlap.
Patrick D. Goonan
There are only a few books I have read that I bothered to re-read again.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

83 of 84 people found the following review helpful By Peter A. Kindle on August 8, 2000
Format: Paperback
Ken Wilber has provided a synthesis of virtually all psychological theories and spiritual perspectives in this short introduction to his spectrum of consciousness. Consciousness, in this context, refers to our personal sense of identify, our personal answer to the question,"Who am I?" Wilber makes much of the fact that our first answer to this question is largely a matter of identifying that which is "not me." The distinction between "me" and "not me" is the fundamental human error, for in making it we deny our oneness with all reality. Hence the title indicates that to grow in consciousness is to eliminate these artificial boundaries. The first half of the book explains this in detail.
Fortunately, our denial of oneness with reality results in dissatisfaction with life that becomes the primary motivation to resolve four basic false dichotomies: (1) persona versus shadow; (2) ego versus body; (3) centaur versus environment; and (4) transpersonal identity versus unity consciousness. At each stage, the harmony in identity that follows elimination of the boundary becomes a new identity defined by new boundaries. Persona and shadow become ego. Ego and body become centaur. Centaur and environment become a transpersonal, but non-universal, identity. Only in unity consciousness, or oneness with all reality, do we eliminate boundaries and find peace.
Chapters are devoted to all four dichotomies. In each Wilber discusses the nature of the boundary conflict and therapeutic approaches sympathetic to its resolution. Interestingly, he understands the conflicts in various therapeutic approaches to be differences in dichotomy rather than truth. Some therapies work for one stage; others for another; all have value at times.
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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Putsky on September 14, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is my first introduction to Wilber's writings. I had been referred to him by several people, including a well known spiritual guru in the UK who said that Mr. Wilber was likely to be recognised as the greatest philosopher of our times and that he is reputed to read several hundred books as background to his works. I had in fact been referred to the Theory of Everything but had been given this book as a present.
Wilber's writing style is clear and simple, although it is true that he does repeat ideas. The latter appears more to be a way of making sure that his audience follows his ideas which, although clear, could sometimes appear to be based on complex notions to the uninitiated or "lay" reader.
In essence, he lays out a framework, one of the first clear attempts I have seen to do this, that positions most if not all religious, spritual, and philosophical attempts at explaining conciousness. What does this mean? He asks the familiar question of what is the meaning of life: of "I". He then goes to show that in the contradictions that emerge in the different answers is actually a set of differences that can be explained by the level of conciousness at which the question is being addressed.
He is extremely well read and uses examples from almost all of the religions, from pschology and psychoanalysis, as well as from philosophy, to develop his ideas. One unfortunately wishes that this was not a book of a hundred or so pages but rather a book of several thousand as one senses that he could go on with his discussions to far deeper levels. In fact, he suggests at the end of the many chapters further reading (worth the price of the book in itself).
For someone interested in spiritualty, buddhism, mysticism, and pschology this book is a must.
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46 of 48 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 27, 1997
Format: Paperback
Ken Wilbur is one of the most intelligent and cohesive thinkers I have ever read. He unites many branches of philosophy and psychology in this book. He provides understanding why so many truths contradict each other. Ponder this: (paraphrased from the text)Unity consciousness, or no-boundary consciousness, by definition has no boundary. As such, you could say that there is no boundary which seperates us from It in this moment. Logic tells us that this must be true. The only thing which prevents us from experiencing No-Boundary Awareness right now, is our resistance to it. The book is not exactly "light" reading, but if you are willing to put on your thinking cap, it is certainly fascinating
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have read many of Ken Wilber's books and this is one of the better ones. The spotlight reviews do a very good job of pointing out the shortcoming and strengths as well as summarizing Ken's general ideas. I won't repeat what they have said here, but will add my own thoughts.

This book has a different tone and structure than many of Mr. Wilber's other books. There is less repitition and somehow he seems to be more accessible and lyrical in his descriptions and metaphors. If you read later Wilber, you will find it lacks some of the feeling tone of this earlier work.

In this book, Ken talks about boundaries and how they are often mental constructs. For example, the boundary that defines me could be taken arbitrarily as my skin. However, I might say I have a body, rather than that I am a body. This implies perhaps that I am a mind that is associated with a body and that I'm moving the line between self and other to the head. In a similar fashion, it is possible that a may have a transpersonal experience in which case my boundary moves out beyond my skin. The idea is much like the arbitrary division between a tree's roots, limbs and branches. These divisions don't necessarily exist as distinct boundaries on the tree, but arise from the analytical nature of thought.

In general, the book looks at a synthesis of Western and Eastern psychological and spiritual approaches to growth. It challenges tacit assumptions on both sides and tries to get the reader to take a broader perspective on reality while honoring what is good in each particular tradition. It is an extremely thought-provoking work and includes a lot of good scholarship. I find it to be highly complimentary to Wilber's later work and often more eloquent.
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