Spiral Dynamics (SDi) is a theory of human development introduced in the 1996 book Spiral Dynamics by Don Beck and Chris Cowan.

SDi is an extension and elaboration of the biopsychosocial systems concept originated by the late Dr. Clare W. Graves of Union College, New York,
See Graves' Levels of Existence at ClareWGraves.com
The letters (F-S), (G-T) on the graphic are the level IDs Graves' used.

Since the death of Graves, Beck and Cowan have enhanced the theory by drawing from the fledging science of Memetics, the study of "memes."

Spiral Dynamics argues that human nature is not fixed: humans are able, when forced by life conditions, to adapt to their environment by constructing new, more complex, conceptual models of the world that allow them to handle the new problems. Each new model transcends and includes all previous models.
It is concerned with why we cooperate, collaborate and come to conflict over differences in values and the deeper value systems that form them.

As man solves the problems of existence at a level, new brain systems may be activated and when activated, change his perceptions so as to cause him to see new problems of existence. Clare Graves

There are a variety of different ways the 8 MEME's1 are described. The following is one I liked.

CORAL: The mystery meme. 
 The authors of Spiral Dynamics have identified, as of the 1990s, meme 
number nine. They call this the Coral meme, but they have not observed it in 
large quantities of people, so they cannot yet summarize its characteristics.  

TURQUOISE MEME  - Holistic  meme - starting 30 years ago
Worldview: An elegantly balanced system of interlocking forces
Mindset: Experience the wholeness of existence through mind & spirit
Manifestations: Holonic, intuitive thinking; global networks for global results

YELLOW MEME  - Integrative  meme - starting 50 years ago
Worldview: The world is a chaotic organism forged by differences and change
Mindset: Flexibility, functionality, responsibility, and spontaneity have highest priority
Manifestations: Integrative structures, systems thinking, "Third Way" politics

GREEN MEME  - Communitarian/Egalitarian meme - starting 150 years ago
Worldview: A human habitat in which we share life's experiences, freed from dogma
Mindset: Seek peace in the inner self and explore the caring dimensions of community
Manifestations: Human rights movements, communes, Woodstock, multiculturalism

ORANGE MEME  - Achievist/Strategic meme - starting 300 years ago
Worldview: A marketplace full of possibilities and opportunities
Mindset: Play the game to win; cultivate optimistic, risk-taking self-reliance
Manifestations: The Enlightenment, Silicon Valley, Fortune magazine, corporate states

BLUE MEME  - Purposeful/Authoritarian meme - starting 5,000 years ago
Worldview: An ordered existence under the control of the ultimate truth
Mindset: Life has meaning, direction and purpose; enforce principles of right living
Manifestations: Puritan America, codes of honor, the Moral Majority

RED MEME  - Impulsive/Egocentric meme - starting 10,000 years ago
Worldview: A jungle where the strongest and most cunning survive
Mindset: Avoid shame, get respect, and do what you want
Manifestations: Feudal kingdoms, rebellious youth, epic heroes, "terrible twos".

PURPLE MEME  - Magical/Animistic meme - starting 50,000 years ago
Worldview: A magical place alive with spirit beings and mystical signs
Mindset: Keep the tribe's nest safe and warm; observe tribal customs, seasonal cycles
Manifestations: Family rituals, shamans, blood oaths, magical New Age beliefs

BEIGE MEME - Instinctive/Survivalistic meme - starting 100,000 years ago
Worldview: A natural milieu where humans rely on instincts to survive
Mindset: Do what you must to stay alive. Food, warmth, sex, and safety have priority
Manifestations: First human societies, starving masses, African Bushmen, street people

Kanzeon Zen Centrum Den Haag - Vorige citaten 

Source: Book Notes at www.peace.ca

An Integration of Taxonomies from Various Wisdom Traditions as Linked to the Spiral Dynamics Categories

Spiral Dynamics model (Consciousness)Christian SacramentsTen Serifot - Kabbalah(10 divine energies)Hindu Chakras (energy points)
Purple: family, "us and them"Blue: survival in the physical worldBaptism: taking responsibility for familyShekhinah: mystical community of humanityFamily / root chakra: blood bond, bonding, loyalty
Purple: union, self- sacrifice for groupBlue: ethics, honour, truthCommunion: union with others in GodYesod: foundation, procreative force of God, source of prophesyPartnership / sacral chakra: integrity, honour, ethics, sacred union
Red: self-esteem, honour, identity, boundariesConfirmation: self-esteem, choice, individualityHod: splendour, majesty of GodNetsah: eternity, endurance of GodPersonal / solar plexus power: survival via intuition, maintain strength & stamina to transcend the physical
Green: relationship, caring, compassionMarriage: love and careTif'eret: beauty, compassion, harmonyEmotional / heart power: love, forgiveness, compassion, kindness, generosity
Orange: exploring purpose, exercising will, self-discipline and strategyConfession: clearing the spirit of negative acts of willGevurah: power, judgement, punishmentHesed: love, mercy of GodWillpower / throat chakra: comes from alignment with God's will, never act out of fear, surrender to synchronicity
Yellow: systems approach, learning, process orientationOrdination: bestow grace to make one's path of service sacredHockmah: wisdom, contact between divine and human mindBinah: understanding of the divine motherMind / brow chakra: wisdom, seeking answers to mysteries, becoming a vessel for energy, learn to seek the truth
Turquoise: transcendent, philosophical, existential, in the nowExtreme unction: bestow grace to finish unfinished businessKeter (crown): paths by which to return to God, made in the image of GodSpiritual / crown chakra: devotion to the now, releasing fears of the physical world, integrate spiritual and physical level, build an intimate relationship with the divine
The various spiritual traditions thus reflect common psychological themes that can be linked to the SD model, as to the other consciousness models discussed in this paper.
Source: "Consciousness Models in Action: Comparisons", by Maretha Prinsloo.

1. Memes: (rhymes with "genes" or "themes")
Coined by English biologist Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene (Oxford 1976), what Dawkins was after was a concept similar to "genes," the biological code carriers of DNA, that would show the same replicating influence but culturally. The result was the term "meme" from the Greek word "mimeme," Self-replicating ideas or cultural DNA, beliefs and actions that use the human mind as a host and are transmitted from mind to mind, culture to culture, like viruses; horizontal differences among human beings, such as culture, color, gender, religious beliefs, actions, lifestyles, etc.
See Memetics and Education.

vMEMES: vertical differences, such as deep-level belief systems, core ways of thinking.

Spiral Dynamics, 1996 by Don Beck and Chris Cowan.
Book Notes at www.peace.ca
Spiral Dynamics Integral (SDi) | SpiralDynamics.net
The Never-Ending Upward Quest from EnlightenNext Media
Keith E Rice - Graves Model
Spiral Dynamics - Wikipedia
Conceptions and Misconceptions of Spiral Dynamics | Inspiration through Impact Maria Ocampo
Maslow's hierarchy of needs
Kohlberg's Moral development and Conscience
MEME descriptions:
IntegralRising.org (Worldview, Mindset, Manifestations)
Kanzeon Zen Centrum Den Haag - Vorige citaten (Worldview, Mindset, Manifestations)
Keith Rice CHE UK
Spiral Dynamics Integral - Dr Don Beck

last updated 22 Aug 2012