on May 27, 2003
just one personal comment: merely reading the definitions of "split life-goals" and "dark night of the soul" by Wilber saved me several months (years?) of struggling - the book provides a novel structure of psychopathology and if you have a structure you have something to hold onto. very therapeutic book for (post)existential-level strugglers!
i really like the brief and concrete style of the older books by Wilber (Atman Project is my favourite!), although, according to Wilber himself, they contain slightly outdated ideas. don't start with it, but don't forget it!
on November 12, 1998
Where have the thoughts in this book been for so long??? Transformations of Consciousness thinks critically about issue's in psychology and spirituality that are so important and would seem so obvious, I wonder how they've managed to escape us all so completely. Primarily, this text brings attention and profoundly questions the motives of the psychological as well as contemplative schools in such a fundamental way as to expose unaddressed pervasive issues that ignorence of which can constitute avoidable casualties to mental and spiritual health. Emphasis is placed on recognition of developmental/phase specific aspects of what constitute appropriate therapeutic and spiritual practices. Specifically,when is meditation harmful as opposed to benificial. What are any of the obstacles in selectively transplanting eastern contemplative practices into the western cultural context? What can both eastern and western traditions contribute to and learn from each other? Wilber, Engler and Brown both impressed and stimulated me with the extraordinary depth and far reaching implications of their considerations. Now, I know why my experience in an eastern influenced spiritual community was bound to end in disillusionment and what has unconsciously motivated so much of my frustrating seeking! What better gift could you ask for?? If therapy has been repeatedly ineffectual, costly and disappointing, or if despite your interest in spirituality you've felt something was missing that you have had difficulty articulating; This book will articulate it. What a glorious Gift!! This book is my BIBLE now!
on August 15, 2010
An excellent presentation of the stages of mindfulness meditation as well as the spectrum of development and the spectrum of psychopathology. Authors Ken Wilber, Jack Engler and Daniel P. Brown know what they are talking about.
Because levels of meditative development are still not widely known, because so few have ventured deeply into meditation, a book like this isn't understood by many. Someone who hasn't meditated can't believe this is possible, so they dismiss it.
If you are a serious long term meditator this book is great. If you've never meditated, or done much contemplative work, this book may not make much sense.
A very worthwhile book for any interested in meditative or contemplative development.
on October 6, 2009
What I found most valuable in this book was the work of Engler and Brown in presenting a very rigorous analysis of the meditation process and their intimate knowledge of Thervadan, Tibetan, and Vedanta meditation. This book is very valuable for those who would like to get a more scientific analysis of what happens in the meditation process and what a more useful definition of what enlightenment is.