From our Ning community discussion:
“Taking John Heron’s ideas into account I would think the purpose of Open Source Spirituality to be “to support an Emerging Spiritual Commons.” I moreover envision this ESC to be composed of people practicing their basic beliefs – what John Heron calls Code 1: basic beliefs and practices. The principles that guide the emergence of the spiritual commons, it’s Prime Directive can therefor not be about the “content” of some Code 1; it’s Prime Directive must be about the ecology that is needed to create enough trust so that people can be open about the content of their Code 1 and share how they practice it.
The Prime Directive is an expression of the insight that all real-life practice of spiritual principles (most of all meaning sense-creating, meaning-guiding principles) is worth sharing and learning from. Since the Prime Directive is about creating the ecology in which good relationship between people implementing their Code 1 is fostered, and since creating an ecology is a process of/in mutuality, most likely the Prime Directive is about encouraging people to find out and live according to what is true and authentic for them and share this in an atmosphere of deep respect for this, for themselves, for their Code 1, and for others equally. I refrain from formulating the Prime Directive so that it is wide enough to take in anybody of ‘good will’ and I write what it is about to indicate where its boundaries might be.
To ‘open source’ something means to put it into a language that is shared with a larger group of peers who can than contribute to this ‘project’ as they please. So certainly any Open Source Spirituality worth this name needs to co-create a “Meta-Code A” in which there is maximum flexibility and ‘space’ for different Code 1’s. Meta-Code A would be an incarnation of the Prime Directive.
And even though there is the Prime Directive it is also clear that, paraphrasing John Heron, “it is neither a prescription, nor even a recommendation, for any other node or person, but a contribution to the commons pool of experiential data, which others may find of interest. Then it is simply up to them whether or not they integrate in any way any part of it or the whole of it, within their own Code 1.”
Within the Emerging Spiritual Commons there would be a “library”, as you suggested, Simon, that functions as the main “memory” or rather as the DNA of Open Source Spirituality over time.
To conclude, I couldn’t agree more with John, when he says, “This allows for varying degrees and kinds of hybridization, cross-fertilization, between different nodes.” He seems to be using the terminology of nodes within a network where I would prefer terms coming from the idea of constellations and ecology – all phenomena come in constellations or patterns within an ecology of influences, a landscape and space.
And finally it seems important to realize that even using the terms “Open Source” in connection with “Spirituality” is already a language of concepts influenced by recent developments in ‘net-culture’.“