Sex, Ecology, Spirituality | Ken Wilber

Sex, Ecology, Spirituality: The Spirit of Evolution

A 1995 book by integral philosopher Ken Wilber. Wilber intended it to be the first volume of a series called The Kosmos Trilogy, but subsequent volumes were never produced. The German edition of Sex, Ecology, Spirituality was entitled ErosKosmosLogos: Eine Jahrtausend-Vision (“A Millennium-vision”). The book has been both highly acclaimed by some authors and harshly criticized by others.


Published in 1995, the book is a work in which Wilber grapples with modern philosophical naturalism, attempting to show its insufficiency as an explanation of beingevolution, and the meaning of life. He also describes an approach, called vision-logic, which he finds qualified to succeed modernism.

Wilber’s project in this book requires nothing less than a complete re-visioning of the history of Eastern and Western thought. There are four philosophers that Wilber finds to be of the highest importance:

Wilber argues that the account of existence presented by the Enlightenment is incomplete—it ignores the spiritual and noetic components of existence. He accordingly avoids the term cosmos, which is associated with merely physical existence. He prefers the term kosmos to refer to the sum of manifest existence, which harks back to the usage of the term by the Pythagoreans and other ancient mystics. Wilber conceives of the Kosmos as consisting of several concentric spheres: matter (the physical universe) plus life (the vital realm) plus mind (the mental realm) plus soul (the psychic realm) plus Spirit (the spiritual realm).

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Three Great Realms | Sex, Ecology, Spirituality #2

“Exactly what those laws and logic are, we will explore later in this and the next chapter. For the moment, notice that Laszlo refers to the three “great realms” of evolution: material, biological, and historical. Erich Jantsch refers to them as cosmic, biosocial, and sociocultural. Michael Murphy summarizes them as physical, biological, and psychological. In […]