or Optimism and Patriotism for post-post modern enlightened liberals.
Chris Parish is a leading voice in the emerging field of evolutionary spirituality. Having grown up as a postmodern liberal, he used to feel that patriotism was relic from a bygone age which had no relevance to the modern world. After all, it was associated with imperialism, racism, war, nationalism so it was best consigned to the history books. However as he travelled the world, he noticed that people from other countries, such as the USA or even liberal postmodern countries like Denmark, had a much more self-confident attitude to their national identity which they could celebrate in an uncomplicated way without feeling racist or backward.
He came across a survey of indicators of wellbeing and subjective patriotism in which the British ranked very highly across all the objective measures of success and wellbeing but ranked themselves 104th, along with the Sudan and Yemen, in terms of attitude to their country. He realised that what marked Britain out was its huge fall in status from having been the most successful and dominant power for 200 years up till the middle of the 20th Century, then falling down to the second rank. Modern liberal Britons seemed to have difficulty coming to terms with the weight of this history.
In this interview with Dr Nicholas Beecroft, Chris explores the British national identity from an enlightened, liberal, post-postmodern perspective. He discusses the wounds, traumas and shame of past wrongs associated with British patriotism and the way in which we have responded to that, often putting it unconsciously into shadow, unresolved and unintegrated. He unpacks all that and puts it in an integral, developmental, conscious, evolutionary context- understanding the history in its context and connecting our past, present and future as a stream of conscious spirit over time.
Finally, he states his own patriotic feelings and beliefs and models how we can confidently embrace our patriotism and tribal parts in this evolutionary, conscious, still liberal, post-postmodern integral world view.
Having spent nearly forty years pursuing spiritual illumination and philosophical understanding, he is a close collaborator, partner and student of spiritual teacher and cultural visionary, Andrew Cohen, in teaching Evolutionary Enlightenment: an approach to individual and cultural transformation that combines timeless wisdom with the particular challenges of our moment in history. Parish is the Managing Director of EnlightenNext UK, a popular speaker, skilled workshop facilitator and well-published author.