Ideas from Neale Donald Walsch
I got this from a friend, and first year student at The New Seminary.
We've been talking a great deal about spiritual activism in the student listserv and I believe that it has some wonderful points.
A summary of a seminar by Neale Donald Walsch,
by Elizabeth Kleinveld.
New Beliefs that will Change the World:
A Call for Spiritual Activism
On Friday night at 8 PM on the quiet campus of the Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY, Neale Donald Walsch addressed the audience of 120 about why we'd gathered there together for that weekend. "To know ourselves as one at last," he said and that knowing is a beginning step, a step towards healing in a world faced with crises as its never faced before. He invited us to
read the papers as proof of the grave situation facing the world today.
There is no coincidence why you are here today and some of you may know the reason that you are here, but perhaps not all of the reasons. "If you think that you are here by accident:you would be mistaken:you have responded to whatever inner call has brought you here."
And so I wondered what was my reason for being there. He seemed very clear--to invite us to explore how we'd gotten to this crossroads and to collectively look at how we were going to get out. And so began the two honor session in which he dropped some clues about how we could help heal the world, help save humanity.
These clues brought us back to our own inner wisdom and were quite simple indeed--simple but not easy. By being in our hearts, in our souls, but not in our minds, that was a step in the right direction.
We talked about 9/11, questioning what would provoke people to kill themselves to make a point, to be heard at last. Why have we gotten to such a point where terrorists, be they Al-Qaidi or snipers at our back door, are doing these acts against humanity? "What is causing this to happen," he asked and how can we change things?
Again, the answer seemed simple, but not easy and the answer had all to do with us, individually and collectively. What is needed, what is called for, is a fundamental shift in the beliefs we have about the world. Only by changing our beliefs will we be able to change the behaviors that are not serving us, that are threatening to destroy humanity. And whilst changing
our beliefs is a first step, we must also work with others to help them challenge their own beliefs. We must take action instead of passively reading books or attending lectures and workshops. "The time has come for spiritual activism:the time to put in practice the things we say we're believing, which we know, which we say we know." Now is the time for us to
"co-create together," for us to join "humanity's team."
And so he began addressing how we'd gotten to this dark cloud that was shadowing mankind--via those who lack understanding about God and life, these are the ones who have precipitated this crises. The problem is that we are fighting the causes of this crises but not addressing the root of the problem. And the only place where this problem can really be solved is spiritually.
He spoke of the religions of mankind and how they'd all led us astray, telling us that God needs something from us, and that sometimes that something means having us kill for him. This, he said, is a fallacy. And he invited us to listen with open minds and an open heart to what he had to say, even if we were offended by it.
Walsch began to discuss these new beliefs that he thinks will change the world, new beliefs that he's outlined in his latest book, the New Revelations, published in October 2002. His purpose that weekend was to challenge us to explore our deepest beliefs and to replace the ones that are
not working with new ones which may work better. "Indeed I've come here today to look the sacred cow in the face, to say moo:or move: I'm going to ask you to accept the call. For a select handful of you, this weekend will change your life:in a new way that will light the world."
This was powerful stuff. Who doesn't want to be a light unto the world? Who wouldn't want to accept the call to help humanity, when humanity so cries out for it?
But was this not a huge undertaking, an overwhelming task? How would 120 of us, gathered there in the small but awakened community at Omega begin to change the world?
Walsch spoke of how a few people can each take it upon themselves to help shift others beliefs by shifting the beliefs of six people around them. In so doing the first domino will fall, and the result will be exponential. The courage of a few to sway the "only partially committed many" would enable us to raise the collective consciousness, which he said could change the collective outcome.
Exciting. Invigorating. Wow, did I feel alive. I felt so alive that my body tingled from head to toe, as the energy raced through me, confirming that I, too, have a place in raising the world's consciousness, just as you do too.
After the session ended I went out with my friend Lisa to get a snack at the cafe. It was 10 PM and I ordered home-made caramel apple cider ice cream. As I licked my cone, I noticed the man who had sat across from us during the session. He was writing what seemed like volumes and I invited him to join us and we exchanged reasons for being there. So I shared the tenants of a
books that Lisa and I have been working on, a book about man's search for meaning and fulfillment in life. And around 11 PM the staff told us it was time to go.
Lisa and I headed back to our cabin buoyed by the conversation and feeling more and more like we'd done the right thing in giving out our corporate jobs in pursuit of our vocation, our calling.
The next morning the session started promptly at 9 and Walsch talked about the meaning of life, what life is really about. "That's what life is about, to be the grandest version of the greatest vision of your life:to create yourself anew everyday."
These were thoughts I'd embraced, thoughts I'd taught in Amsterdam for the past two years in my Career and Intuition workshops--helping people develop careers from the inside out--helping them create lives congruent with their deepest values, in which they could express and embody the "grandest version of their greatest vision," in which they could become one with their true
selves. Indeed, many times I'd asked participants to journal about this question-to write about what it looked like to create more of that vision in their lives and to explore how they could realize that. And as Walsch reminded us, if yesterday we live a life that is not congruent with our highest selves, with our true selves, then today we have the opportunity to chose anew and to create something different.
He spoke of how we'd made such grand leaps forward in science and the arts, but that we were still stagnating in the spiritual realm. And so we are in the midst of the second great Renaissance, he said, except in our thoughts on spirituality. What was needed he pointed out is "humility theology" or a theology which is "willing to acknowledge that it doesn't have all the
What's creating the problem today are those who are convinced that they have all the answers because those answers were given by God. The problem with this of course is that they were given to a number of people, all of whom seem to have a slightly different slant on God's word. So in fact, the problem that we are facing is not that we don't know exactly what God is. The problem is that some are convinced that they know who God is and what God wants AND that they are willing to do acts against humanity in the name of God. This is the problem.
Our challenge he said is to find religious and political leaders who are willing to be open to the possibility that we may not know exactly who or what God is. Our challenge is to find leaders who are willing to go out on a limb to say, you know maybe we don't have all the answers. And Walsch admitted that he doesn't have all the answers about what God is either, onfilteredy
that he knows what God isn't.
It is precisely the belief that God needs something from us that is behind the behavior to force other humans to take on that version of God, that dogma, instead of allowing them to create their own vision, based on their own inner wisdom. This is where the shift must occur. And then he imparted to us nine new revelations he'd received from God:
1. God has never stopped communicating directly with human beings. God has been communicating with, and through, human beings from the beginning of time.
2. Every human being is as special as every other human being who has ever lived, lives now, or ever will live. You are all messengers. Every one of you. You are carrying a message to life about life every day. Every hour. Every moment.
3. No path to God is more direct that any other path. No religion is the "one true religion," no people are "the chosen people," and no prophet is the "greatest prophet."
4. God needs nothing. God requires nothing in order to be happy. God is happiness itself. Therefore, God requires nothing of anyone or anything in the universe.
5. God is not a singular Super Being, living somewhere in the Universe or outside of it, having the same emotional needs and subject to the same emotional turmoil as humans. That Which Is God cannot be hurt or damaged in any way, and so, has no need to seek revenge or impose punishment.
6. All things are One Thing. There is only One Thing, and all things are part of the One Thing That Is.
7. There is no such thing as Right or Wrong. There is only What Works and What Does Not Work, depending upon what it is that you seek to be, do or have.
8. You are not your body, who you are is limitless and without end.
9. You cannot die, and you will never be condemned to eternal damnation.
And these new revelations are in no way meant to replace modern theology and religion, no they are only meant to enlarge it, expand it, to include "grandeur thoughts, new truths, deeper perspectives and larger understandings," he insisted. Instead of tearing down our old places of
worship, we would just be adding a room to the existing foundation by incorporating these beliefs.
Many religions would call you a heretic if you said not only that you are having a conversation with God but that God is indeed talking back. And yet he is talking back, talking back via your own higher consciousness, that place of inner wisdom and knowledge that we all have, your higher self. And one of our greatest challenges is to "give people back to themselves," and we can only do that by helping them get in touch with their owner inner wisdom. When I heard him say that energy shot through my body, tingling and I got the chills, for he confirmed in that moment, my intention in life, to help others get in touch with their true selves so that they many manifest their purpose too.
At that moment I felt more alive and excited than what felt like ever before and this continued all weekend and continues even now as I write about this experience on the plane back to New Orleans.
By connecting to that place of inner wisdom you can transform yourself and in so doing you transform the world. Indeed as Sri Romana Maharishi said, "Your own self-realization is the greatest service you can render the world." So realize your greatest potential and create the experience you want to see, you were meant to create, the experience that expresses your
inner most truth.
And for us to get the change we so desperately want to see in the world, we must begin by transforming ourselves. And so Walsch quoted Gandhi, "Be the change you want to see."
That's what I think that fulfillment is all about, being what you want to see, what you are, while burnout comes from, "the attachment to the need for results." This attachment is borne from a feeling of not having that thing or feeling which you wish to have, from the illusion that you must control the circumstances in order to obtain the outcome you want to see. But the paradox is that "when we detach from outcomes, outcomes produce themselves." When we can feel that we don't need that thing, person or feeling which we think we need, then it may have the space, the energy, to manifest itself in our lives because we aren't screaming out our lack to the universe. Instead we are showing that we feel abundant and perfect as things are now in this moment, at this place.
Walsch made some more very powerful statements, "you are the source of happiness itself, you put happiness in the thing you say you need." He suggested that when you are feeling lack, feeling like you need something or someone, to say this affirmation, "I am that which I seek." And if what you seek is peace, then cause another to experience that peace-be the source of
peace giving, peacefulness. If you want to be forgiven, forgive yourself and others from imagined wrongs.
He reminds us that while you cannot change the thoughts and actions of another, you CAN change your own. If your thoughts are not all forgiving, accepting and loving, chose to think again. Ask yourself, "what would a highly evolved person do?" Instead of seeing the person who you feel may have wronged you, see their higher self, see them as "who they really are
and show them that you see it." Lead people back to their true selves and enable them to connect to their own inner wisdom. This is one of the greatest gifts you can give the world. This is one of the ways we can heal the world. The purpose of these messages is not that Walsch or any other person will reveal you great wisdoms, but rather the purpose is to "lead you to your own."
"How do we lead people to their inner wisdom," I asked. He suggested writing down a question that you have been struggling with before going to sleep. When you wake up, pick up a pen and write out your response. Immediately, before you wake from that semi-conscious state.
Then Walsch posed the question, what would our world look like if we believed that God talks to us, through us, if we believed that we are all ministers of God's word? How would our lives be different and how would that change the world? What would the world look like if we believed that we had a message to bring to life and we knew exactly what it was?
So what is your message? What does your highest self look like and how do you intend to manifest that? These are questions that can help you connect to your own inner wisdom. And so I invite you to explore them, to write down what it looks like to be your grandest self, what your highest self does, how your highest self spends its time, what your higher self looks like and believes in.
Lisa and I left the session and went to the dining hall for a dinner of salmon and veggie fajitas. We met up with the man who'd been writing so prolifically the evening before and he shared some notes he'd taken for us about our model of self-fulfillment. Lisa took the notes and headed off to get a massage. I went to the Ram Dass library and wrote in my notebook: What does my highest self look like? I headed back to the cabin, read the question and fell asleep.
The next morning I awoke and read the question again and then wrote: My highest self seeks union, union with the divine, the divine within. My highest self seeks to heal the world by helping people find something worthwhile, something to live for, a purpose that has deep meaning to them, that is congruent with their values and who they are at their deepest core.
My highest self is interested in the merging of souls, and the peace, tranquility and love that emerges when one is in harmony with one's soul purpose and the rest of the world.
Oh the bliss of finding your purpose and heeding the call. Oh how it felt like I had finally come home.
Sunday's session started at 9 AM. It was an intense one in which Walsch called on us to become spiritual activists, to challenge our politicians, spiritual leaders and peers to be open to the possibility of seeing things differently. He called on us to spread the five steps of peace around our communities.
1. Some of our old beliefs about God and the world no longer work.
2. There is something that we don't understand about God and life, the
understanding of which would change the world.
3. Be willing for a new understanding to be brought forth, and understanding that could produce a new way of life on earth.
4. Be courageous enough to explore and examine these new understandings, and if they align with our inner truth, to enlarge our belief systems to include them.
5. Live our lives as demonstrations of the highest truths within ourselves and not as denials of ourselves.
And after sharing these five steps to peace, he invited us to join "humanity's team" in order to create a life that is "worth living, persevering, expressing and saving." He invited us to be an inspiration to the world and to be the change that we want to see.
What steps could we take when we returned home? he asked. We could print up the five steps to peace and post them on the doors of the houses of worship in our cities, towns and parishes. If we felt uncomfortable doing that, we could make copies and mail them to our clergy. We could even take out an ad in the paper listing them and also listing the names of the clergy and
politicians who do or do not support them. We could ask the local clergy and politicians to get together to start a dialogue, to create a space to challenge old beliefs and closed minds and most importantly to look at "how we can overcome that which divides us." He called on us to "pass it on, pay it forward," to be spiritual activists and hence to communicate regularly with those in our charge. And so it is here and now, that I for one, begin this communication, this dialogue and I invite you to respond.
Responding to the call might include:
o Going online to find out more about joining humanity's team:
o Learning to get in touch with your true self by:
o Answering the question, "What is the grandest version of the greatest vision" of myself?
o Writing down the question you want answered before you go to bed and answering it immediately when you wake up.
o Writing in your journal either ten to fifteen minutes a day or twenty minutes three times a week.
o Heeding your own intuitive voice, by noticing how your body responds to positive and negative signs.
o Practicing yoga and or meditation on a regular basis, even ten to fifteen minutes a day.
o Looking people in the eye when they are talking to you and really trying to listen from your heart.
o Being willing to see things differently and when you are having trouble, asking God or your higher self to help you see things differently.
o Saying the affirmation, "I am that which I seek," and believing it.
These are just some of the ways that we can start healing the world, by cultivating a communion with our higher selves, by cultivating a communion with the God within.