Image by Gerhard Gellinger
Why bother to heal the world if -- as Conversations with God declares -- everything is perfect just the way it is?
Well, you know, there is really only one reason to do anything -- wear the clothes we wear, drive the car we drive, join the group we join, eat the food we eat, or tell the story we tell -- and that is to decide who you are.
Everything we think, say, and do is an expression of that. Everything we select, choose, and place into action is its manifestation. We are in the constant process of recreating ourselves anew in the next version of ourselves.
We are doing this individually and collectively every minute of every day. Some of us are doing it consciously, and some of us are doing it unconsciously.
Awareness Is The Key. Awareness Changes Everything
If you are aware of what you are doing, and why you are doing it, you can change yourself and change the world. If you are unaware, you can change nothing. Oh, things will change in your life and in your world all right, but you will not have the experience of having had anything to do with that. You will see yourself as an observer. As a passive witness. Perhaps even as a victim. That is not what you are, but that is what you will think that you are.
This is how it is when you are creating yourself and your world unconsciously. You are doing things, you are putting energy out into the world, but you have no idea what you are doing.
On the other hand, if you are aware, if you know and understand that every thought, word, and deed places creative juice into the machinery of the universe, you will experience your life in a totally different way. You will see yourself as George Bailey in the movie It's a Wonderful Life, understanding at last that there can be incredible end-of-the-line impact from your in-the-moment choices and actions. You will have stood back from the tapestry to see the beauty of its design, and you will be keenly aware of the interweavings that were required to produce it.
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Is The World The Way You Want It To Be?
If the world is right now the way you want it to be, if it is a reflection of your highest thought about yourself and about human beings as a species, then there is no reason at all to “heal” anything.
If, on the other hand, you are not satisfied with the way things are, if you see changes that you would like to see in our collective experience, then you might have a reason to tell your story. For if, indeed, the world as you witness it does not present an accurate reflection of your highest thoughts for all of us, then yours is the opportunity, as was mine, to come forward, to tell your truth, to share your story, and to lift us all up in our Awareness.
We have a chance now to move to the next level. Or, we can continue to operate on this planet as a primitive culture, imagining ourselves to be separate from God and separate from each other.
Making the Shift: Consciously Creating Our Own Evolution
The breathtaking futurist and visionary, Barbara Marx Hubbard, in her book Conscious Evolution, and in her later title, Emergence, discussed the challenges before us. Barbara said that, for the first time in human history, the members of our species are not merely observing their own evolution, but consciously creating it. We are not only seeing ourselves "becoming," we are choosing what we wish to become.
Of course, we have always been doing that. We simply didn't know it. We were not aware of the role we were playing in the evolution of our own species. Mired deep in the Illusion of Ignorance, we imagined that we were just "watching it happen." Now, many of us see that we are making it happen.
We are doing this by moving from the place called "effect" to the place called "cause" in the Cause and Effect Paradigm. Yet if more of the human race does not make this shift, we could easily go the way of other once-great civilizations that thought themselves to be hovering on the verge of greatness.
They had developed marvelous wonders and extraordinary tools with which to manipulate their worlds, yet their technologies raced ahead of their spiritual understandings, leaving them without a moral compass, without a higher understanding, without any awareness at all of what they were doing, of where they were going and why. They went, therefore, the way of self-annihilation.
Major Crossroad for Humanity: Earthly Society At the Edge
Now, once again, our earthly society has come to this same precipice. We are on the brink. We are at the edge. Many of us, individually, can sense it. All of us, collectively, are impacted by it.
We have come to a major crossroad. We can go safely no farther with our limited understanding. We can take one path or the other, but if we do not know why we are taking it, we are gambling with the future of our species.
We must grapple now with larger questions, embrace now larger answers, consider now larger thoughts, imagine now larger possibilities, hold now larger visions.
Our technologies have brought us to the cliff of our comprehension. Are we going to fall, plummeting to our collective death? Or shall we leap from the cliff and fly?
We can clone life forms and humans. We have decoded the human genome. We can do genetic engineering, crossbreed animals, unravel life itself, and put it back together again. On May 4, 2001, the first genetic modification of human babies was reported.
Where Is This All Leading?
Where is this all leading us? Listen to Francis S. Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute, as quoted by writer Michael Kimmelman in the February 16, 2001, New York Times:
"I wouldn't be surprised if in another thirty years that some people will begin to argue, as Stephen Hawking already is, that we ought to take charge of our own evolution and should not be satisfied with our current biological status and should as a species try to improve ourselves."
And I tell you that there will come a time when human beings living a life as we now do -- open to what Shakespeare called "the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune," subject to the whims of nature and the accidental confluence of biological events -- will be seen not merely as primitive, but as unthinkable.
Conversations with God says that human beings were, in fact, designed to live forever. Or at least, as long as they choose. With the exception of accidents, death is not something that should take anyone when they do not want to go -- much less by surprise.
An enormous percentage of our human illnesses, our biological discomforts, our systemic misfortunes, are preventable or curable even today. Give us another three decades and they could well be completely avoidable.
Then we will have to address, once again and with a completely open mind, the larger questions of life which we approach now only with hesitancy and timidity, wishing to neither blaspheme nor offend. I believe that our answers to those questions will determine how we will use our new technologies and abilities -- and whether we produce miracles or debacles.
Yet we must first be willing to even face the questions, and not avoid them -- or, worse yet, imagine in our hubris that we have already faced them and now have all the answers.
Do we already have the answers? Look at how the world works. Then decide.
I don't think we have. I think we still have some matters to explore. Here are some of the inquiries I think we must continue to make:
Who and what is God?
What is our true relationship to the Divine?
What is our true relationship to each other?
What is the purpose of Life?
What is this thing called Life, and how do we fit into it in a way that makes sense to our soul?
Is there such a thing as the soul?
What is the point of all of this?
What we need a little more of on this planet is what Sir John Templeton calls Humility Theology. That is a theology that admits it does not have all the answers.
Do We Really Have All The Answers?
Do we really have all the answers about God? Do we really know who God is, and what God wants, and how God wants it? And are we really sure enough about all this to kill people who do not agree with us? (And then to say that God has condemned them to everlasting damnation?) Is it possible, just possible, that there is something we don't know about all this, the knowing of which could change everything?
Of course it is. And more and more people coming forward and talking about their own "conversations with God" and their own interactions with The Divine is what will cause us all to see that.
So, my friends, it's time to come out of the closet. It's time to raise our hands, to tell our stories, to shout our truth, to reveal our innermost experiences, and let those experiences raise eyebrows. Because raised eyebrows raise questions. Questions about How It All Is that must be raised if the human race is to experience what Barbara Marx Hubbard calls "emergence."
Get Ready, Get Set, Jump!
Let me tell you about an interesting theory recently placed before us by the extraordinary author-philosopher Jean Houston in her book, Jump Time. I think it's pertinent here.
It is Ms. Houston's idea that the human race does not evolve slowly over a period of many years, but, rather, remains stagnant for vast periods, and then, in the comparative blink of a cosmic eye, lurches abruptly forward, taking gigantic evolutionary steps virtually overnight. Then, life returns to stasis for another hundred or thousand or million years, until the quiet building up of energies once again -- like a dormant volcano erupting -- produces Jump Time.
It is Ms. Houston's further theory that we are at Jump Time right now. Evolution, she assesses, is about to make another one of its quantum leaps.
I agree. I see the same thing. Really, I think I have felt it. I have felt it coming on. Many people have. Barbara Marx Hubbard has. Marianne Williamson has. Deepak Chopra has. Many, many people have. Perhaps you have.
Sharing Our Experiences, Stories and Sacred Truths
Now, to help human beings also make this leap, and not be left behind by it, here is what I think we must do. We must share our stories about the sacred things we know, which we have learned in the most sacred moments of life. For it is in these sacred moments, these Moments of Grace, that sacred truths are made real for the entire culture. And it is in the living of its most sacred truths that a culture advances as the universe evolves, and in the failure to live those truths that a culture expires.
But let's be clear here. I am not talking about forcing anyone to believe anything. I am not talking about proselytizing or converting or even convincing. I am talking about simply sharing our experience, rather than hiding it. Because we don't wish to expire, but wish to advance.
Telling Stories Around the New Campfire, the Internet
Let's return to our nights around the campfire, when we told the tales of our heart. That's what I'm inviting us to do. Let's break out the marshmallows and the graham crackers and share our stories, even if they sound a little weird. Perhaps especially if they sound a little weird. Isn't that what sitting around the campfire is for?
Our campfire today is the Internet. It is the flame that will shoot high into the sky, with our sharings, like floating embers, carried on the wind to all the wherevers.
The Internet, yes, and, still, good books. Good books, like good nights around the campfire, are always remembered.
And then there is simply good, old-fashioned, in-person sharing -- which can bring the feeling of the campfire to wherever it occurs, and so, makes the highest impact of all.
Sharing Our Personal Truths and Questions
Let's tell each other what is so for us, what is going on with us, what is true about what we have seen and experienced in our lives. Let's tell each other our innermost truth about God, about ourselves, about spirituality, about love, and about all the higher callings of life, the callings that stir the soul, and give us evidence of its existence.
I don't think we're talking to each other nearly enough about these things. We're watching TV and reading the stock quotations and asking, "How 'bout them Dodgers?" We're working our buns off ten and twelve and fourteen hours a day and crawling into bed exhausted and trying to find the flame for a real talk and a deeply meaningful and intimate interaction with the person on the other side of the mattress when we barely have enough fire in the belly to say goodnight.
It has been too long since many people have had a real discussion about anything. I'm talking about what Jean Houston calls Deep Dialogue. I'm talking about exposure here. I'm talking about nakedness. Not ego-driven chattering, but experience-sharing, truth-exposing, secret-revealing, mind-opening, heart-expanding exchanges of soul energy.
Let's start relating again. Let's begin to really notice our many, many Moments of Grace, and call them that, so that we don't miss life while we are living life.
This is what I call The Invitation.
It comes from the Cosmos, not from me.
It is Life inviting Life to tell Life more about Life.
It we accept The Invitation, it may mean bucking the tide. It may mean sounding a little weird, or being called a little crazy. It may even mean opening ourselves to ridicule. That is the cost.
That is the price.
That is the tariff for Coming Home.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher, Hampton Roads.
Moments Of Grace: When God Touches Our Lives Unexpectedly
by Neale Donald Walsch.
Info/Order this book (hardcover) on Amazon.
New 2011 edition of the book (new title)
When God Steps In, Miracles Happen
by Neale Donald Walsch.
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About the Author
Neale Donald Walsch is the author of Conversations with God, Books 1, 2, and 3, Conversation with God for Teens, Friendship with God, and Communion with God, all of which have been New York Times bestsellers. The books have been translated into more than two dozen languages and have sold in the multi-millions of copies. He has written ten other books on related topics. Neale presents lectures and hosts spiritual retreats around the world to support and spread the messages contained in his books.