Donald Trump will be the best thing that ever happened to those who despise him. But the path won’t be pretty and, for many, it will be a terrifying ordeal indeed. I’ve written this article to offer a new scientific perspective to help ease anxiety and offer a grounded case for optimism. If you understand the natural logic driving the events to come, you will be perfectly poised to thrive in this new normal--regardless of your political preferences.
Please take a step back to see the big picture. First consider that the ugly feud between Trump and his opponents will become much uglier over the next four years. At the same time, please consider that this unsightly mess is part of an epic healing now being orchestrated by Mother Nature. Through this process, countless long-buried dirty dishes in the sink of our cultural psyche will be cleaned, preparing us for a quantum leap forward together.
Understand that the creative tension driving this rift comes primarily from the clash between two worldviews: the “Achievers” (represented by Trump) and the “Explorers” (Trump's main detractors). On the surface, these two camps often seem bitter enemies. But in evolutionary terms, they’re a match made in heaven. Each worldview camp plays a vital role to help the other overcome fear and progress to its next stage of learning.
The Achiever-Explorer partnership stabilizes both parties and serves the evolution of the whole planet. It gives Achievers a projection partner to help them safely process deeply repressed fears of being weak and unlovable. It gives Explorers a projection partner to help them develop inner strength by becoming more loving human beings. Were this relationship ever to break down completely, our world would collapse instantly into chaos. But this will never happen because, when push comes to shove, they remember their deep indebtedness to one another.
To understand why I say this, let's consider the Achiever-Explorer partnership in the context of the entire worldview spectrum. As you may know, in 2012 I discovered an equation called the Voice Code that mapped the entire path of worldview development.* According to this map, there are 12 worldview stages that tell the whole story of consciousness--from the womb to the highest stage of enlightenment.
Our personal and collective progress through these 12 stages is relationship-driven. We are all part of the larger orchestra of evolution. As such, the relationships that we form in life are never random. They are a critical part of the natural curriculum through which we awaken to find and fulfill our life's purpose. At each worldview stage, we attract new learning partners who help us complete our next lessons. Sometimes they show up as beloved friends, and other times as evil villains. But, rest assured, everyone is part of the curriculum--including casual acquaintances, public figures and seemingly random conversations with strangers.
The easiest way to understand how nature's map works is by analogy to a journey up and over a mountain with 12 base camps along the way.
The first 6 stages (“Phase I”) are the uphill climb where we learn to survive as we become socialized by misguided authorities to seek happiness outside. This journey ends with Trump's Achievers. They're the kings of phase I.
The next 6 stages (“Phase II”) are a downhill ride where we unlearn all limiting Phase I beliefs to thrive without limits following our inner authority. This journey begins with the Explorers. They're the freshman recruits for Phase II.
The most disorienting leg of the journey is the one the US is now navigating: the shift from Phase I to Phase II. During this transition we lose faith in conventional authorities, and begin to look inside to discover truth. If you have personally moved through this process, you know how confusing and lonely it can be. Now amplify those feelings by 350 million and imagine an entire culture wading through this same confusing inner shit storm without a map.
Welcome to the USA! We've been navigating this phase-shift together for about 16 years now. It's been messy, but we've made remarkable progress across the board. There's now a strong and unified coallition of Explorers and Pathfinders (Stage 8) who are reinventing capitalism and culture in Phase II fashion. Our next mission is to build a safe and sturdy bridge between these two sides of the mountain by healing the Achiever-Explorer axis.
Through this lens, the polarizing ugliness now arising with Trump in the White House is a great sign of progress. It means that this worldview partnership is ready to do the hard work and heavy lifting required to build this bridge.
Eight years of Obama’s (Stage 8 Pathfinder) leadership was extremely helpful. But while his administration helped us lay some solid Phase II foundations, it left the bridge back to Phase I unfinished. In retrospect, this seems to have been unavoidable given Obama's temperament and the circumstances under which he rose to power.
The 2008 global financial meltdown ushered in a wave of deeply negative anti-Achiever sentiment across American culture. The venom was strongest in the hard core liberal base, perhaps best exemplified by the Explorer-driven "Occupy Wall Street" movement. This punishing attitude continued on the left throughout Obama's tenure, leaving a large population of white, affluent male Achievers feeling like a disenfranchised minority for the first time ever.
In walks President Trump, a pugnacious posterchild for the old-school Achiever coallition. By simply being his chest-beating self, Trump will inevitably force both worldview camps to sober up. First, he’ll drive smug liberal Explorers out of their minds until they have no recourse but to open their hearts and practice the same tolerance they preach. Along the way, he's certain to make a lot of short-sighted executive decisions that backfire terribly, dealing a fatal deathblow to Achiever dreams of life without taxes.
Through these painful lessons, both worldview camps will gain some much needed perspective. Stripped of their hubris and freed from the past, they will mend their ways and a stronger Phase II America will emerge.
The shift to Phase II marks a beautiful awakening. With this transition, we surrender the futile search for happiness outside and become radically empowered from within. In pop culture, the first baby step in this shift--from Achiever to Explorer--has often been represented by the mid-life crisis movie. As the story often goes, a ruthlessly selfish character does a complete 180-degree reversal to become a more caring and compassionate human being.
Will this happen to our new Achiever president Donald Trump during his tenure in the Oval Office?
Um....Maybe. Not likely, but who knows?
If so, it would all rest on the Explorers. If the Explorers could learn their lessons early, the pull of their collective compassion would be enough to topple any ego—yes, even that of Donald Trump! But here's the rub: The only way I can imagine the Explorers growing up so quickly would be through an existential threat--a catastrophic event like 9-11 or far worse--that wakes them up quite rudely. I sure hope we can heal these wounds without that sort of trauma. In fact, I don’t just hope, I know we can. Here's the question: Are you willing to find and love that which you now deem unlovable in yourself and others? It's a tall order, I know. But the more of us who do this, the more likely we are to avoid armageddon. If you'd like to master this ability, I've written an in-depth book that will help you do so quickly using the Voice Code.
Whatever dramas the next four years bring, one thing is certain: Donald Trump is in the White House for a very good reason! He’s the iconic portrait of the wounded male Achiever shadows that we must now clear to move America forward. But please understand: we can’t expect the Achievers to do this work themselves. They need support from the Explorers. Given the natural laws that govern this process, service to earlier stages is how we move forward. So if they ever hope to become free-thinking Stage 8 Pathfinders, Explorers must extend a loving hand to help the Achievers over the mountain. When they do, it will ignite an upward spiral of service that eventually heals the whole mountain.
You see, when Explorers stop blaming them, the Achievers drop their gaurd and become generous. Following their own charitable impulses, they pay the love forward, by helping dogmatic Believers (Stage 5) become self-empowered. Through this service, Achievers open their hearts and develop a new respect for the Explorers. When the time is right, they say good bye to Phase I and enter Phase II, climbing over the mountain top to join them. This calls the Believers below them to step into their power and join the new class of Achievers.
On and on, it goes until the entire mountain is transformed.
Thus will begin the next upward spiral that pulls us to the Phase II promised land together. This new American revolution will reverse the laws of power as our fading Phase I culture now understands it. Because of this, it cannot be led by wealthy Achievers with imperialist agendas, but only by healthy Phase II thinkers who practice kindness.
I won't pretend to feel elated with Trump in the Oval Office. But as a scientist, I am deeply encouraged. If the task of our times is to expose and heal ancient wounds, we have very good cause to be optimistic. I cannot imagine a better catalyst! Hidden hatred is the cancer that keeps us stuck. Only when hatred is exposed can we see our innocence beneath and embrace it.
Will Donald Trump make America great again?
When all is said and done, I believe he probably will. But not in the way he and his supporters now imagine.
He’ll make us great by showing us what we’ve hidden. Seeing our hatred in the full light of day, we will heal it. Not in the name of moral obligation or noble intentions, but in the name of our simple human desire to be happy. We will face our deepest fears, forgive ancient grievances, and remember our deep love for one another. In so doing, we will restore faith in ourselves, revive the American spirit, and discover the true meaning of greatness.
*NOTE: The Voice Code completed the research of Dr. Clare W. Graves, to whom I am deeply indebted. For more on the 12-stage worldview map mentioned in this article, see "The Voice Code: Master Your Inner Game" (2016). For in-depth training to engage the worldviews mentioned, see "Igniting Inspiration: A Persuasion Manual for Visionaries" (2008).
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