My first book on co-intelligence is now published! + Mar 15 event…

My new book Co-Intelligence: The applied wisdom of wholeness, interconnectedness and co-creativity has just been published! You can check it out and order it right now in paperback or Kindle.

This accessible book encapsulates my 30 years of work on co-intelligence.  Its timing is unusual (see below), but it covers the worldview and implications of co-intelligence far more fully and coherently than you’ll find anywhere else in my writings.

Here are a few of the heart-warming endorsements I’ve received…

What could be more important than harnessing the wisdom of the whole? In this lucid and stimulating book, Tom Atlee artfully unpacks what co-intelligence means and how it can help us navigate these turbulent times. Highly recommended.

William Ury, co-author of Getting to Yes and co-founder of the Harvard Program on Negotiation

By emphasizing wholeness and co-creativity, this book taps into the open-source potential of collective wisdom, through a symphony of theory, poetry, and stories.

Audrey Tang, Digital Minister, Taiwan

This book will help us listen more deeply to the wisdom we carry within, the wisdom we can only access collectively, and the inherent wisdom of life as a planetary and universal process.

Daniel Christian Wahl, author of Designing Regenerative Cultures

Co-Intelligence is a timely and thought-provoking book that offers invaluable insights into the power of collective wisdom and co-creative engagement in addressing the complex challenges of our time. This book is essential reading for anyone seeking to navigate the complexities of our interconnected world and build a more sustainable and equitable future for all.

Claire Mellier, Iswe Foundation and co-initiator of the first Global Citizens’ Assembly on the climate and ecological crisis for COP26


You’re invited to an informal kind of “hang out with the author” release event this Friday, Mar 15th on Zoom 10am-2pm Pacific Time. I’ll be there for the full three hours.  You can stop by for as long or short as you want.  If you want to join us, register at the book’s new webpage – and read a few of the other great endorsements I’ve received!


The book’s paperback price of $17.76 is designed to get you free shipping with two copies from Amazon even if you don’t have Prime (as well as sending a signal to my fellow American [r]evolutionaries!). 

If you can’t afford the printed version you can buy the cheaper Kindle edition for about $7 (less if you have credits with Amazon).  Or you can write to me at – with “CI eBook” in the Subject line – and I’ll email you a free epub or pdf version (please specify which).  After all, I’m not trying to make money off it so much as to get the word out – which you can help me do.

I invite you to tell your friends and colleagues about it and to do ratings and write reviews on Amazon and elsewhere. Whatever you do, please spread the word!


This remarkable book was pulled together in three months. It comes almost 30 years after my first public presentation of co-intelligence back in 1994 in the journal Thinkpeace. Thereafter I spent about four years drafting many versions of a co-intelligence book with a half-dozen helpers. We didn’t finish it before Y2K and democracy crises interrupted our work. But now finally the book is finally done – and it’s better than ever! 

So I want to thank Ethan Mollick, author of Co-Intelligence: Living and Working with AI, for unintentionally providing the impetus I needed to complete this important work (see the story below).  And for much of the book’s quality and speed of publication, I want to thank an ad hoc network of twenty volunteers named in the book’s acknowledgements. That group delightfully included Bryan Guignard, who happens to be a professional proofreader (among many other things), and my dear wise democracy colleague Martin Rausch who shepherded the book through Amazon’s print-on-demand publishing system – and designed a really nice cover for it!  I also want to thank the sixteen colleagues who wrote great endorsements for it, which you can read on the beautiful webpage created for the book by CII board member Andy Paice.

Now we have to promote it.  I don’t usually play marketing games, but the more people rate and review our new book specifically on Amazon, the more likely it will show up in an Amazon search. Right now if you search for “co-intelligence” it doesn’t show up (although Mollick’s and other AI books do). But if you search co-intelligence + wholeness – or atlee, or interconnectedness – our book comes up first. My main reason for the rush getting it out has, after all, been to help the word “co-intelligence” remain associated with the full holistic meaning I have worked for 30 years to embue it with.  That’s the challenge I faced through the events I describe below….


On December 11, 2023, I wrote to Professor Ethan Mollick – whom I’d just heard about – “I recently learned about your new book CO-INTELLIGENCE.  I would love to talk with you about it, as well as my related work and possible collaborations.”  I explained that “I coined the term ‘co-intelligence’ in the early 90s and have done extensive work with the idea over the three decades since.”  I referred him to my blog post about his book and a few key links to my other writings.  I noted “that your thesis has definite resonances with certain aspects of my broader conception of co-intelligence – particularly themes of partnership and collaboration”.

I ended my note with an invitation: “In the spirit of collaboration and partnership, I’d like to explore things we might both learn from each other and that we might do separately and mutually to maximize the benefits of our odd convergence on this unusual topic for our respective approaches to it.  Let me know what you think.”

He didn’t take me up on my invitation.  Instead he replied the next day, quite politely, “Tom, Thank you for your email. I had never encountered your work before, so what you sent was interesting. My book is very much focused on recent advances in artificial intelligence and how they interact with human intelligence (which is why we came up with Co-Intelligence for the title), and I don’t think our topics actually overlap. I do appreciate you sharing your ideas and approaches, however.”


Mollick’s book has been available for pre-order on Amazon for months but is only due for “release” – when actual delivery can happen – on April 2nd.  (I can only wonder if there were discussions about whether or not to release a book on AI on April Fools Day!)  So I decided to get my new book out by mid-March to give it a chance to show up alongside his book in Amazon and Google.  Thanks to all the support and my serious focus, we made our target – so now YOU have the book!

Below is the book’s table of contents.  You’ll see it is quite substantial – and also quite different from most books. As noted above, this Friday we’ll have an informal “fireside chat” on Zoom to celebrate the book’s release and I’ll read some favorite passages, stories and poetry! I’ll answer your questions and share thoughts and stories about the book and its evolution.  It’ll be a “stop by whenever you can” 3-hour event going from 10am-1pm Pacific Time.  Register at the book’s website if you’d like to come to all or part of it.

So consider this message to be “the quiet launch” of the book.  A more formal event will happen March 27th after we’ve had time to organize it.  The informal event this Friday will be based on the Open Space principles that “whoever comes is the right people” and “whatever happens is the only thing that could have.”  Who knows?… You may be one of those “right people” who show up….


    Table of Contents 


Co-Intelligence: The applied wisdom of wholeness, interconnectedness and co-creativity

PROLOGUE – Meeting “co-intelligence”  …  1                        

    Poem: Riotous Meadow People  …  8                                                    

INTRODUCTION – Co-Intelligence and the Holistic Paradigm – and how to read this book  …  9

    Poem: The Whole Knows  …  16


CHAPTER 1 – Intelligence:  Navigating reality well  …  21

    Poem: Getting Our Intelligence Act Together  …  24

CHAPTER 2 – Wholeness: Where everything fits – in its unique, dynamic, sacred way  …  27

    Poem: Becoming Whole  …  48

CHAPTER 3 – Interconnectedness:  The web and family of Life and the implications of it all  …  51

    Poem: Elusive Truth  …  54

CHAPTER 4 – Co-creativity: All Life is doing it, evolving together as we go  …  55

    Poem: The Tao of Co-Intelligence – Part 1  …  61

CHAPTER 5 – Co-intelligence:  Intelligence that arises from – and serves – wholeness, interconnectedness, and co-creativity  …  67

    Poem: The Tao of Co-Intelligence – Part 2  …  83 


   Poem:  The Whole Flow Knows  …  91

CHAPTER 6 – Wholesome Power, Leadership and the Prime Directive  …  93

   Story: Healthcare Professionals Get Liberated  …  109 

CHAPTER 7 – Universal Intelligence and Spirituality  …  113

   Story: Nature as the Eldest Intelligent Teacher  …  117

CHAPTER 8 – Conscious Evolution  …  121

   Story: A State of Grace Replacing Contracts  …  129

CHAPTER 9 – Process, Participation and Conversation  …  133

    Story: The Future Armenian & the Future of Deliberative Democracy  …  137

CHAPTER 10 – Morality and Empathy  …  141

    Story:  Bridging the Culture War Void  …  148

CHAPTER 11 – Story  …  151

    Story: A Story Epiphany  …  157

CHAPTER 12 – Wise Democracy  …  159

    Story: Taiwan’s Innovative Engaged Democracy  …  162

CHAPTER 13 – The Metacrisis  …  165

    Story: The Great Law of Peace  …  171

CHAPTER 14 – Always More To It  …  173

    Story:  A Powerful Question Opens Up Everyone’s Thinking  …  176

     EPILOGUE – Prospects: Adapting meaningfully with the Edge of Life   …  179

    Story: The Spear in the Chest Moment  …  181


APPENDIX A – A catalog of wholeness-related factors and phenomena  …  187

APPENDIX B – Modes of power  …  195

APPENDIX C – Sources of collective wisdom  …  205

APPENDIX D – The Wise Democracy Pattern Language  …  213

APPENDIX E – A note on artificial intelligence  …  231

APPENDIX F – Some core books and websites  …  235

    Poem: Seed  …  242

Acknowledgments  …  243

Index  …  245

    Poem:  Pop Haiku Koan  … 266


Tom Atlee, The Co-Intelligence Institute, POB 493, Eugene, OR 97440

Appreciating, evoking and engaging the wisdom and resourcefulness of the whole on behalf of the whole

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