Deep Democracy is based on Mindell's Process Orientated Psychology. Arnold Mindell a physicist and Jungian analyst has succeeded in applying quantum thinking to psychology consequently his approach differs from contemporary psychology. His innovative understanding, techniques and tools individual and group dynamics enables powerful transformative processes to take place in a relatively short time.
In the early 1990s two of Mindell's students, Myrna Lewis and her late husband, Greg, began translating some of these psychological tools for use in organizations. As corporate consultants, they applied what they had learned to a unique situation: South Africa's transition from apartheid to democracy.
The Lewis method of Deep Democracy was born when South Africa's national utility company engged Myrna and Greg to help a division of 5,000 people make the leap from apartheid to democracy. Like most apartheid-era corporations, this was a racist, sexist workplace, where each employee filled a rigidly defined slot in the hierarchy. Now, virtually overnight, workers were expected to become team players to make cooperative decisions and support each other in implementing them - all in the crucible of deeply rooted racial, cultural and gender-based tensions.
The Lewis's responded to these enormous challenges by adapting the complex science of Mindell's Process Orientated Psychology and applying it to everyday demands of the new dispensation. With their help, their client's 5,000 workers weathered the transition, and the company went on to thrive.
Greg and Myrna subsequently discovered that their methods work just as well for educators, students, communities, families and couples. After Greg died in 2002, Myrna continued to refine the techniques they had created together. It has taken more than fifteen years of intensive work to hone Deep Democracy into the straightforward, five-step methodology changing lives and relationships all over the world today. Today, the methodology is used in all sectors of society and in over 20 countries.