Transcending and SQ

Earlier in my post on Mindfulness and Inspiration, I introduced the idea of Transcending and self-transcending.  I wished to paint a picture of a Self, taking a lofty view of the self.  The capital letter S, hints at some way that is capable of seeing our selves in physical form and living day to day on Earth. I used the ideas of  Dr. Ken Wilber talked about Transcending, years ago.  His idea was that as the child learns to ride a bicycle, they are aware of how pedestrians walk, and they can make adjustments.  This same person learns to drive a car and has a similar perspective of cyclists.   Later, the motorist learns to fly an aircraft and has a look from above at his hometown.  This is Wilber’s idea of transcending to a lofty view, where the flyer can get back in his car and virtually anticipate what’s around the next corner.  Thus, it was Wilber’s way of talking about transcending.

In this post, I wish to mention scientific evidence that the brain has evolved to deal with transcending and authors, who has introduced what they call  Spiritual Intelligence (SQ) and how we can do such things as healing ourselves developing this SQ.

Danah Zohar & Dr. Ian Marshall have published SQ: Spiritual Intelligence, The Ultimate Intelligence at the beginning of the millennium.  They start with the science and work of two men.  By early 1990s, Dr. Michael Persinger and in 1997 V.R Ramachandran talked of a “built-in spiritual centre located in the temporal lobes of the brain.” They called in a “God-spot.”  Next Zohar and Marshall mention Austrian neurologist Wolf Singer who showed that this “spiritual centre” had an interconnective style to link all the major centres of the brain when it contemplates things of ultimate importance. Thus, Zohar and Marshall’s “SQ has ‘wired’ us to become people we are and gives us the potential for further ‘rewiring’—for growth and transformation, for the further evolution of our

Do you want a chance to use your SQ?  You are invisible to me in the here and now as I write this to you in the eternal present moment, as I write this, and in that, same present moment as you read it! If you can think of this you are using SQ!  Zohar and Marshall offer a little test for SQ:


“The indications of a highly developed SQ include:

  • the capacity to be flexible (actively and spontaneously adaptive)
  • a high degree of self-awareness
  • a capacity to face and use suffering
  • a capacity to face and transcend pain
  • the quality of being inspired by vision and values
  • a reluctance to cause unnecessary harm
  • a  tendency to see the connections between diverse things (being ‘holistic’)
  • a  marked tendency to ask ‘Why?’ ir ‘What if?’ questions and seek      ‘fundamental’ answers
  • being what psychologists call ‘field-independent’ – possessing a facility for working against convention”  (and this is only page 15 of their book!)

If you feel you might have scored lower than you expected, there’s hope for all of us!  I will quote, Danah Zohar & Dr. Ian Marshall point out a couple useful things on this, right away: “Collective SQ is low in modern society. We live in a spiritually dumb culture characterized by materialism, expediency, narrow self-centredness, lack of meaning and a dearth of commitment. . . .But as individuals we can act to raise our personal SQ – indeed, the further evolution of society depends upon enough courageous individuals doing so.  . . .  The book finishes with a chapter on how to be spiritually intelligent in a spiritually dumb culture.” (page 16)

Indeed, dear reader, if you have read earlier blog posts of mine, you would understand that, what I call “on-purpose” in earlier blogs, is to do with same thing as these above authors, because the news has been out for a couple of decades.  As a matter of fact, Danah Zohar’s earlier book Quantum Self (1990) stimulated me to write the first edition of STREET SMARTS for Challenging Times. In a nutshell, I worried, for my own children’s sake, that there was, in my own words, a humanly created Hell on Earth, and a lot of hazardous thinking in Western society.  Your courage will be inspiring–so don’t give up.