From my tiny exposure to Wilber's work, here's the issue as I see it. Wilber tries to integrate the world-views of science and religion. In the process, he attacks the view that evolution is driven by random mutations. He equates "randomness" with a claim that our existence happens by accident. He mocks this view in his blog with statements like:
Also, as you point out, referring to random chance really means "I have no idea what is going one here"--and that is really what, in Sex, Ecology, Spirituality, I call the "philosophy of oops," as you rightly note. This is a huge hole in the mere chance and selection argument.
In the same post, Wilber offers as "the alternative" his view that the evolution of our world must be driven by a force which he calls "Eros."
I say: originally, there's no spiritual and no material, only our just-now experience, beyond words and thoughts. We create distinctions like spiritual/material or scientific/religious with our thinking, and then can struggle forever to integrate or balance the two. But if we put down the thinking that creates the split, then the sky is blue, sugar is sweet, and a dog goes "woof!"
After reading and pondering this debate, I added this comment to the newest posting on Wilber Watch:
I've just read the posting that anony commenter #3 points to. In it, Wilber writes:Merry Buddha's Enlightenment to all, and a Happy Winter Solstice.
... my point lies in a different direction, which is what these critics miss: the necessity of a self-organizing force (or Eros) intrinsic to the universe.
Is Wilber saying anything here? Or is he just playing with words? That is: "self-organizing force intrinsic to the universe" means that there's something that causes this experience we're having. That has no meaning unless we examine what that "something" is. Do we know?
Metaphorically: if you're drinking water, it doesn't matter whether you call it "water" or "aqua" or "H-two-O." Those are just different names that don't touch its nature. What is "Eros" other than a name?
Scientists will say that this "something" is "randomness." That's a name meaning we don't know the first cause. A true mystic will say exactly the same thing, that the fundamental cause is a complete mystery. If the mystic calls it "God" and the scientist calls it "randomness," that's no real difference.
For Wilber to call it "Eros" makes no difference either... except that he claims that "Eros" is something he does understand. He has ideas, his "theory of everything," that he claims does capture the fundamental cause with his thinking.
So that's the real point. Do we believe that Wilber's thinking mind has really captured a knowledge or understanding of why there's something rather than nothing? Or is he just too arrogant or too frightened to face the mystery, and instead (like a religious fundamentalist) opts to grasp some speculation and pretend that he knows what he really doesn't?
As Socrates told us long ago, the mark of true wisdom is to understand that you don't know.
Like myself, I believe Wilber has done some serious Zen practice, and for at least one moment, experienced immersion in that unknowable thing. After such an experience, the true direction of the Zen tradition is to recognize that it's not a thing that can be held by thoughts, knowledge, understanding.
Rather, it's something to be recognized fresh in each moment, in this moment, in our just-now experience, before-thinking. And we can also lose it at any moment when we miss that experience in favor of some idea, some "theory" about it. Isn't that what Wilber is making a career out of doing?