Recent Posts by Max Marmer

Irrelevant Academic Entrepreneurship Research

I’m going to an event tomorrow where there will be a lot of entrepreneurship researchers and academics and I’m feeling irritated by how inane, arcane and irrelevant most of their research questions are.

God…so many financial resources and brain cycles spent researching topics that will not hardly move the needle on anything important — and which essentially completely miss what’s most important:

How to maximize the economic growth and the job growth of the global economy with powerful new products and services that make everyone’s life more good, true and beautiful.

I’m looking forward to laying down a new paradigm of entrepreneurship and innovation at the level of the startup, the level of the startup ecosystem and the level of the global macro economic system. Most of the hard thinking is done, for me now, it’s all about the grind of developing business systems and writing.

And then over the next few years aligning an abundance of resources to establish a feedback loop between cutting edge theory and cutting edge practice.

As of January 1st, 2016, my writing on Entrepreneurship and Innovation has now become my #1 priority…and I’m Charged Up like Drake, ready to go Back to Back.

P.S. (In case I offend any academics, let’s have a discussion where you try to convince me your research is relevant and I try to convince you to pursue a different research question).

On Tolerating Shit In Your Life

A post on Community, Integrity, and Calling Out People who Cross Your Threshold Of Shit.

On Christmas an article in the NYTimes was published entitled, “A Spiritual Leader Gains Stature, Trailed by a Troubled Past”, that is essentially an exposé on Marc Gafni, rehashing old transgressions of his because he and his organizations are gaining significant power again.

The article served as a lightning rod for a large amount of latent energy to come rushing to the surface, desiring to take Marc Gafni down.

I read a fair amount of the commentary and posts being written because I know Marc, the Integral community he is a part of, and many people who are both strong supporters and detractors of him.

I am also very interested and invested in the concepts and constructs of Community, Integrity, Forgiveness, Standards and Morality.

One of the most insightful statements I read written about Marc’s past and path was that the “systematic vulnerability he is exposing is preying on those who live by the ‘benefit of the doubt’”.

The idea that “benefit of the doubt’ is a systemic vulnerability that is regularly being exploited really hit home for me.

And I began pondering a related concept I’m calling the Threshold of Shit.

What is the Threshold of Shit we’re willing to tolerate from people in our lives before we’re willing to do something about it?

I believe many people’s and their community’s Thresholds of Shit are way too high.

Thus, their life and community is interspersed and surrounded by lots of Shit.

I see people doing shitty things do other people all the time with impunity and almost zero accountability, because 1) it is not illegal and 2) the community of people close to them is willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.

This includes Very Shitty things like: Treating Romantic Partners Terribly in Breaking up. Fucking over Business Partners. Exploiting Customers with Borderline Immoral Marketing.

And less Shitty, but still Shitty things like: Narcissistically ignoring anyone else’s Reality, Unwittingly Projecting Negative Emotional States Onto Other People. Not Taking Responsibility for One’s Own Actions and Energy.

I want to live in a world and community where people get called on their SHIT.

And not when it becomes a Pile of Shit…Right When They Shit. Redhanded.

1) It keeps places beautiful, smelling nice, growing, healthy and clean.

2) It actually serves the Shitter. Once they know they can’t get away with their shit, the incentives of the system are such that there are no more shitty shortcuts to get what they want. The only way to get what they want is to BECOME A BETTER PERSON.

I’m annoyed and angered by how many shitty things people get away with because the Threshold of Shit most people are willing to Tolerate is just way too high.

I won’t stand for Shitheads in my life nor shitheads in the community I’m growing.

If you shit on me or my community members you will be called out and…

Then given the opportunity to atone, improve and enter right relationship with right action.

Or if not, Taken Down by a White Hot Sword of Truth. (h/t to Adam Gordon for inspiration for the imagery wink emoticon )

Most of this post isn’t about Marc, it’s about what reading about Marc brought up for me.

I haven’t read enough or talked to enough people to have a position I’m confidently willing to get behind. But for now what I’d say is, I like much of Marc’s writing and his vision for an Integral Spiritual World, but given his past abuses of power, and the amount of mistrust that clearly surrounds him I don’t see how he can be the Leader of an Organization without betraying his own values. For if he stands for a Movement that envisions a new kind of Wise, Loving and Trustable World…but the Movement and World he wants to see come into Reality loses trust, credibility and momentum as a result of him leading it, I don’t see how he can put himself in a leadership role unless he values his own personal power and expression more than the movement and ideals he stands for.

TLDR: Don’t Tolerate Shit in Your Life. Call out the Shitheads. Enjoy Peace, Serenity, and Mutual Accelerated Growth.

The Lessons of Depression

My girlfriend Eleanor Tara wrote an awesome article on the Lessons of Depression:

Here are her top 3 habit changing recommendations to Overcome Depression:

Habit Change #1: Putting things into our bodies that make us depressed → Putting things into our bodies that help us heal

Habit Change #2: Staying in misaligned relationships and careers → Letting go of what no longer serves us

Habit Change #3: Not paying attention to our surroundings → Consciously choosing our environment

What I love most about her article is how she frames the experience of depression not as an illness to be medicated away, but rather as an experience that is trying to teach us something very important about ourselves.

And how learning these lessons is essential for us to align our lives with our highest purpose and our soul’s deepest calling.

I have experienced extended episodes of depression multiple times in my life, have supported numerous friends through depression myself, and consider it a very important topic that I plan to continue to write about. This is a beautiful and wise article that is deeply aligned with my own experience, perspective and recommendations.

Analyzing & Integrating Diverse Psychological Models

The following is a semi-long post that covers topics like: What I’ve Been Reading, Attachment Theory, Enneagram, Meditation, and the differing relationship between the Ego in Meditation in the East vs the West.


I primarily listen to audiobooks rather than read books because most of the time when I have full focus I prefer to be creating rather than consuming.

The last audiobook I listened to was Art of Learning by Josh Waitzkin. It was great for what it is, though I also have some critiques and more thorough commentary.

Now I’m listening to Your Brain on Love by Stan Tatkin on the recommendation from Mikyö Clark.

I’m 20% in so far I like it though have a few critiques as well.

The book is basically about the neurobiology and neurochemistry of Love and its confluence with Attachment Theory described in a very accessible way for a lay person.

I’ve never really gotten into Attachment Theory but a lot of my friends are very into it, so this is a good way for me to go deeper.

Attachment Theory has three core styles Insecure: Avoidant, Insecure: Anxious and Secure.

Stan nicknames these types the Island, the Wave and the Anchor respectively.

Now I’m just getting to the section where he overlays those types with a polarity describing the excitability of someone’s nervous system nicknamed Airplane and Submarine.

My main normative recommendations so far:

1 – I keep seeing Personality models like Enneagram and Jungian Typology as being confounding variables in the explanatory model of Attachment Theory. It doesn’t make sense to make predictive therapeutic recommendations from just the Attachment Theory model without it’s confluent interaction with a finely detailed personality model like Enneagram. If only because Enneagram is primarily Nature based and Attachment Theory is primarily Nurture based and any good model needs to take both into account. In my ideal world someone would use the construct of Enneagram type X Attachment style as buckets in their experimental design and interpretation and I think the data would make much more sense.

2a – He indicated that no attachment style is better than another. They’re all equally good. I think this may because he’s also made no mention that attachment style can change over time

2b – I believe one should strive to do the psychology and spiritual work to become securely attached. One of the meditation lineages I’m in is actually doing a lot of interesting work to integrate Psychotherapy and Meditation. And they have developed a number of powerful meditations to rewrite one’s relationship to their parental figures and their parental orientation to reality, which is what codes one attachment style. And thus make one’s attachment style changeable and progress-able.

I posted about a meditation retreat last month led by John Churchill and Dustin DiPerna where they led some of these type of attachment theory style meditations throughout the weekend.

The integration of Psychotherapy and Meditation is actually a pretty huge spiritual innovation.
As Spiritual Meditation is designed to trigger ego-transcendent experiences. Yet most Westerners have problems with egos. And there are lot of problems that arise when one has ego-transcendent experiences before they do sufficient clean up work on their ego. Interestingly, this wasn’t historically a problem since most Contemplative Traditions came from the East where most people’s Egos didn’t really reach an Autonomous, Individuated Stage so this wasn’t a problem. This is why you also need a Developmental Psychological Lens. But now the territory is getting really complex, because humans are complex and we need complex maps to make good descriptions and recommendations for humans…and overall I’m finding Your Brain on Love a bit too simplistic so far, hoping the model continues to evolve, but a good primer nonetheless.

All for now. Hope I didn’t bore you, though probably only the hard core psych stuck around for all of this one anywaysmile emoticon

The Old Soul’s Lonely Walk

‪#‎TBT‬ : I just found a poem I wrote when I was 15.

I don’t think I ever shared this one with anyone.

When I occasionally dig into my journals from the past, I am struck by how much I am living almost exactly the life I saw before myself as a kid and teenager.

I often forget what my inner world was like when I was much younger and reading this poem this morning tickled my feeling of fate. As if my life is merely the construction of a blueprint set before birth. With my greatest strength born in its faith and my deepest depression born in its doubt.

“Man is supposed to be the maker of his destiny. It is only partly true. He can make his destiny, only in so far as he is allowed by the Great Power.”
– Mahatma Gandhi



I am picky
…I am left to solitude
I am enlightened
…I am a precocious phony
I am smart
…I am condescending
I am gregarious
…I am annoying
I am stoical
…I am boring
I am quixotic
…I am a know-it-all
I am left ephemeral glimpses of success
While I combat the next failure
In triumph I only find misery
Daunting as they become increasingly harder
Confusion as to how they arose
How am I not myself?
I try desperately to rip a whole in the blanket of normality
Sickened that the only way is to stand on its shoulders
I climb alone
Lost on a journey looking for companionship
So demanding is society to fit the mold of public acceptance
Betrayal to become it, loss of identity
Enjoying being trapped in the box
Scornfully staring at the few who dare to challenge
The sky is the limit
But to those in the box the limit is the ceiling, no more than six feet above their head
Left to drown in my solitude
I must accept it or conform to what I hate
A world of hypocrisy
A mind taught not to think for itself
An enjoyable outcome is hard to come by when you must invent it yourself
Exhaustion clouds my thoughts and ideals
A try to mix and match in a world of black white
I am a blurry haze to the colorblind
I am a contradiction of love and hate
My idiosyncrasies are used for leverage to knock me down and boast normality
A gap is created
One I do not enjoy
I search for a middle ground but find only empty space
Floating in nothingness I find peace
Short lived for I find I am bored
Lost for words I cannot express my feelings
I am stuck looking for hope
Seeing signs of happiness though fleeting
I find myself chasing my tail
Repeating yet not knowing why
As do other I crave though others
But unlike many I crave two different worlds
And yet I can have neither
Its have if people can see straight through me and not see sincerity
Yet being completely oblivious to any realization why
And I am left with the word “No”
And a trail of foot steps leading off into the distance

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