Since Hungary is at the epicenter of the refugee crisis currently engulfing Europe, we called our friend Bence Ganti to get an integral, European perspective. Bence is the founder of the Integral Academy in Budapest and producer of the Integral European Conference.

In his conversation he highlights the differences between the response of the Hungarian government versus the general populace.

To understand the attitude of Hungarians towards President Viktor Orban, Jeff suggested I imagine by some twist of fate that Ted Cruz was elected president in the US. Orban’s “illiberal” government seems to be moving Hungary backward, much to the dismay of all the people that thought they were voting for the Orban of twenty years ago—the young, democratic Orban, whose Fidesz party (The “Young Democrats”) helped lead Hungary out of Soviet authoritarianism into a country that is now a part of the EU and NATO.

And while the international news has been quick to label Hungary as xenophobic for erecting a fence on the border, Bence points out that this red/amber altitude action may actually be an appropriate response to this kind of boundary violation; an effort to establish some order in a very chaotic situation. “There is a gate, too, in the fence,” says Bence.

It’s a complex situation and Bence really helps put things in perspective.

It’s a subject that we’ll likely be working with at the next Integral European Conference, which will be held on the shores of beautiful Lake Balaton in Hungary next year, May 4-8. Bence fills us in on how those plans are coming along. We can’t wait!