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mark allan kaplan


Personal Statement

I have danced many dances within this world of form, including that of student and teacher, artist and researcher, healer and patient, spiritual seeker and spiritual guide, theorist and practitioner.

For most of this multi-domain dance I have been a filmmaker, having made my first film when I was 16 years old. Prior to this I began my lifelong experimentations with various forms of artistic expression, from drawing and painting, to photography and architectural design, to writing and poetics. My early explorations in these artistic domains were deeply driven by my search for a way to communicate without using my speaking voice, since I was haunted by a severe stutter through these formative years.

When I created and projected my first film, I knew I had finally found my voice. This lead to my sojourn away from my Midwestern home to California for film school, where I learned the craft of filmmaking from some of the great Hollywood masters. I made several award-winning films and graduated with a B.A. in Motion Picture and Television Production from the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts; and an M.F.A. in Motion Picture Directing from the American Film Institute. After film school I worked professionally in the entertainment industry as a motion picture producer, writer, director, editor, researcher, and consultant

During my quest through film school and the entertainment industry, I also began my search to heal my stuttering, which lead me down the paths of psychology and spirituality. Eventually, my life-dance took me back to school for an M.A. and Ph.D. in Transpersonal Psychology from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology; and a Certificate in Integral Studies from Fielding Graduate University and Integral Institute.

Along this path I have had the grace to have studied with many great teachers and mentors; conducted and published personally transformative research on the integral and transpersonal dimensions of the cinema and the experience of divine guidance across religious traditions and cultures; and had my creative works recognized with various awards and honors, and exhibited in schools, colleges, festivals, conferences, expositions, theaters, and broadcast media around the world.

My present dance within this world of form is that of an transdisciplinary artist, filmmaker, researcher, consultant, and educator. As part of this dance, I am currently exploring various applications of Integral Theory, including the research and development an Integral approach to cinematic media theory, development, production and distribution. I was recently honored with the 2008 Integral Life Award from Integral Institute in recognition of this work.


Mark Allan Kaplan on the Web:


The Weblog for Mark Allan Kaplan, Original Gravity, The Divine Guidance Project, The I-Peace Project, The Integral Cinema Project, Integral Judaism Project, and The Transpersonal Cinema Project.



Original Gravity
Original Gravity is the Production, Distribution, and Services Company for Integral Artist, Scholar and Practitioner, Mark Allan Kaplan, Ph.D. http://www.originalgravity.com

The Divine Guidance Project

A Nondenominational Research Project Devoted to the Study and Advancement of the Experience of Divine Guidance Across Religious Traditions, Cultures and Domains of Experience.



The iPeace Project

A Research Initiative Exploring the Application of Interfaith and Integral Spiritual Practices for the Promotion of Inner and Outer Peace.


The Integral Cinema Project

A Research Initiative Exploring the Application of Integral Theory to Cinematic Media Theory and Practice.




A Research Initiative Exploring the Application of Integral and Integrative Approaches to Judaic Studies and Practices.



The Transpersonal Cinema Project

A Research Initiative Exploring the Transpersonal Dimensions of the Cinematic Arts.





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