Meet the Flipsters

Conversations on the Bridge

A Conversation with Dr. Danah Zohar
(The complete Flip interview, with only minor edits, not found in the book)

Danah Zohar ( studied physics and philosophy at MIT and completed her postgraduate work in philosophy, religion, and psychology at Harvard University. She is the author of SQ: Spiritual Intelligence, the Ultimate Intelligence and best-sellers The Quantum Self and The Quantum Society, books that extend the language and principles of quantum physics into a new understanding of human consciousness, psychology, and social organization. Her most recent book, coauthored with Ian Marshall, is Spiritual Capital: Wealth We Can Live By. Danah Zohar lectures widely throughout the world at conferences organized by such bodies as UNESCO, The European Cultural Foundation, The World Economic Forum, The World Business Academy, YPO, IFTDO (International Federation of Training and Development Organizations), the Swedish National Parliament, Japan’s Council for the Growth of Future Generations, and the Australian National Government.

One of her most intriguing notions is the idea of spiritual capital. “Spiritual capital is a whole new philosophy for business and corporate governance in which the basis of your business changes from a focus on the bottom line to a focus on ‘how do we get to the bottom line and what do we do with that bottom line when we have got to it?’ That means being driven by a deeper vision and a deeper set of values, which takes into account the contribution you make to your own workforce’s well being, to the community’s well being, and to the planet’s well being. If you don’t get that right then you’re not going to be sustainable because you’re going to lose the morale of your people and you’re going to start losing money. Most Fortune 500 companies exist for five years or less. The Quaker companies founded at the turn of the last century go on and on. One can point to various acts by companies such as Merck and McDonald’s and Coca-Cola that have earned them some spiritual capital. It’s not a matter of sacrificing the bottom line in order to be a good guy. There really is money in being good.

“It turns out that there are three kinds of capital. Material capital is what most business people think capital is about – money and property. Social capital is the amount of trust and communication and embassy amassed by an organization. The third kind of capital, what I call spiritual capital, is the extent to which an organization’s purpose, aspirations, beliefs, and accountability are demonstrated in their actions. Spiritual capital forms the basis for material and social capital, just as spiritual intelligence underlies IQ and EQ. It’s really capitalism with a conscience, where employees’ personal values, principles, standards, and concerns are incorporated into their working life.

“Our values and our shared meanings are the glue of society. A society is high in social capital if it boasts low rates of crime, illiteracy, litigation and divorce along with high trust, good relations, friendships, etc. By those standards, most Western countries are pretty low in social capital at the moment. We need visionaries who can inspire and raise the people’s consciousness. I really believe in the importance of leadership. People find it much easier to follow the example of someone they admire than some theory they read.

“The challenge of shifting corporate culture is to get it into the positive motivation range where the first four motivations are exploration, cooperation, integrity, and power over oneself. Then you can achieve power or mastery over the situation at hand. What if we could build a sort of Knights Templar in the corporate world; comprised of men and women who are effective members of the world, not just wooly-minded idealists, but tough business people who could serve whatever they hold most sacred, most beneficial in their own value system, and lead their companies from that level? The leadership role of these knights would be to nurture and build the spiritual capital of their companies, thereby raising the motivation of the people in their companies. If just 5-10% of the leadership at all levels of a company or industry became knights, they would be sufficient to inspire and shift another 80% of the workforce.

“There’s a bit of this built into the core of European thinking, a concern that the whole of society be involved in the wealth of society. So there is more openness to this spiritual approach to business in Europe, as long as you stress that spiritual doesn’t mean religious. It’s more about values and vision and our fundamental purpose.”

Danah believes that this shift toward a spiritual economics is necessary to our survival as a species. “Classic capitalism is not sustainable. It’s is a monster consuming itself, undercutting the very resources upon which it relies. We all have to dwell on this planet, and it’s getting to be a very small place. Nearly everyone realizes that we’re too interconnected and interdependent for companies – or even countries – to continue acting like islands unto themselves. We need to rise above negative motivations such as fear, greed, anger, and competition. Operating from negative motivations yields negative results. So we must either make this shift in consciousness or we’re going destroy our culture completely. I don’t know if we’re going to destroy life on Earth like the real pessimists say, but I think we are going to destroy at least what we take for granted: our high tech, wealthy lifestyle. We’re just going to destroy ourselves.

“For my part, I’ve just founded a ‘total intelligence’ company that will take the next step beyond spiritual capital. Total intelligence is a concept of emergent consciousness that arises from the meeting place of mental intelligence, emotional intelligence, and spiritual intelligence. Total intelligence is greater than the sum of the other three parts, an explosion into a while new way of being. This is a major leap in human consciousness. We are literally talking about a quantum field across the brain which makes a higher form of awareness possible. It’s not a way of thinking about the world. It’s a way of existing and participating in the world.

“Complex adaptive systems are of interest to business people because they are poised at the edge of chaos – between order and disorder, between the past and the future. And that is exactly where society is poised today. The edge is exciting. It’s where new order and new information are born. It’s where creativity happens. But from the edge you can also spin off into chaos. Our success depends upon pulling ourselves together and emerging with a new, organized consciousness and philosophy… and a commitment to follow them.”


The Flip, by Jared Rosen and David Rippe, illuminates a clear path to a vibrant enlightened world where millions of people already live and thrive. It describes in vivid detail and real examples evidence of an upside down world in decay and a Right Side Up world of authentic beings bright with possibility.
The Flip is an owner’s manual for the twenty-first century full of insights, conversations with recognized experts, thought leaders, and visionaries, and actionable exercises and tips you can use to begin your own personal flip.

To read more about The Flip and additional interviews from other luminaries, experts and bestselling authors, please visit

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