Did you know that Transcendence (or self-transcendence) is the highest human “need” on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs? No? Well, it is. The familiar triangle, created earlier in Maslow’s career, usually omits this highest level, which was added much later in his life.

The adjacent image is Maslow’s ultimate triangle, created around 1971.

The definition of his new tier: “Transcendence refers to the very highest and most inclusive or holistic levels of human consciousness, behaving and relating, as ends rather than means, to oneself, to significant others, to human beings in general, to other species, to nature, and to the cosmos.” *

It’s at this tier that our lives become imbued with a sense of meaning and purpose.

Genius Model


“Transcendence of self—living at the level of Being . . .”*

Some people, myself included, believe that transcendence actually extends beyond human consciousness. Being is living in connection to and alignment with the universal consciousness that encompasses all living things.

TRANSCENDENCE: Living a Life of Meaning was born with the dream that all corporate leaders could lead from a place of Transcendence, being leaders rather than doing leadership.

The upper triangle in the TRANSCENDENCE logo represents Maslow’s hierarchy, while the lower triangle shows the integration of the whole self into leadership and life. It also grounds the triangle firmly in the world. For it is in the physical world where we achieve our desired results and our fulfillment.

The mission of TRANSCENDENCE is to positively impact the lives of corporate leaders, and through them all corporate workers, by helping them to explore their values, their beliefs, and what matters to them, integrate all aspects of themselves and flourish at levels and in dimensions they never imagined.

*Maslow, A.F. The Farther Reaches of Human Nature, New York, 1971.