Much has been said about this year related to the Mayan calendar and the ages of this world. There is what we hear from what the ancients devised and taught, and there is what contemporary experts tell us. Beyond what we hear from others, we each have our own intuitive connection with the cycles of creation. As we reflect on what we have sensed at that level, who among us wouldn’t say that this has been a remarkable year?
For many of us, this year began in darkness—not darkness in the sense of something bad happening, but darkness in the sense that what was to come was unknown. Yet we were in touch with the invisible movement of creation that is the starting point for anything creative. We were aware of a stirring of the substance of the deep within us. We were willing to be in that deep, in that unknowing, and just be present. And isn’t that what is called for from us in our life, really all the time: that relative to the things that we don’t know, we are willing to be fully present, knowing that our presence awakens the possibility that is within the darkness before us. We find that simply by being present we provide that connection and the way opens up before us.
For me and a few friends, we found ourselves at Roz Ovenstone’s apple farm, High Noon, near Cape Town in South Africa, on March 10th. We shared a time of silent meditation, prayer and attunement with people around the world. As the year has unfolded from that day, we see so many people awakening spiritually with the desire to embody their awakening in their living. There is also a great coming together—a desire to find resonant souls who are destined to embody this awakening with each other.
I could name so many things about this year that make me want to throw a party. Here at Sunrise Ranch, all kinds of wonderful people are coming to be with us and to share in our work. And having come, it’s like they’ve been here always. It’s like we are affirming some kind of ancient connection. That’s how it is for us when we connect with other people who share the experience that we are a connecting point between the possible and the manifest world in which we live. This is practical spirituality.
When we speak about practical spirituality, one of the things that we mean is that we are here to let something manifest. Practical spirituality is the art of manifestation. We know something’s going to happen in our life—something happens in everyone’s life. When we are talking about practical spirituality, what we’re talking about is manifestation that is infused with the spiritual. And to be more specific, we are talking about infusing the manifest with the spirit of universal love.
To really do that takes trust. It takes deepening in our own experience and opening up. It is a trust that the largest part of who we are lives in the Eternal. It doesn’t always look like that to people—in fact, usually it doesn’t. Most people find themselves enmeshed in the manifestation. “This is happening and that is going to happen; this is taking place in my friends. This is what is happening financially, and this is what’s happening in the world at large.” So often, people find themselves enmeshed in that reality. There really is no answer for a person when the sense of context they have is limited to what is happening around them.
It takes something deliberate from a person to make space for a larger reality. I found that out living in New York City. I noticed how hard it was for people to carve out space in their life, to make room in consciousness so that their innate ability to be in touch with universal love and intelligence kicks in. So often people lose faith in their own ability to see and understand what’s happening around them and to shed light upon a situation. So often, people lose faith in their own innate intelligence and in the power of the love that is within them.
Practical spirituality starts with something that doesn’t seem so practical to people—making space in their consciousness for something they cannot see. One of the greatest spiritual teachers to walk the earth, Jesus of Nazareth, spoke of that as going into your closet—a private place within yourself, perhaps even a dark place in which you can find the part of your own reality that is wise and loving. If we are overloaded with sensory stimuli we are not likely to stay in touch with the eternal wisdom and power that is within us.
Years ago, living in New York City, Joyce and Helena and I had an apartment on the tenth floor on Fourteenth Street. There was a hole in the street outside our window, covered with a large metal plate, so all night as the trucks went by we would hear ba-boom ba-boom; ba-boom ba-boom. New York City is like that, and so are many other places in the world. But it is not just sensory overload that distracts people from the inner context. Before we ever moved to New York, Joyce and I lived in the Catskill Mountains. We would drive down to New York City to put on coffeehouse events. As we came down through northern New Jersey and over the George Washington Bridge, we could feel the energy of the city. It was palpable, particularly for someone with some spiritual openness, and for many people it is overwhelming.
The stimuli of our world seem to be at a lower level where we live now at Sunrise Ranch, in Loveland, Colorado, but it hasn’t gone away. There is the bombardment that comes to us through the media. And like everyone else, we are still living with seven billion other people on this planet.
What is needed is the willingness to go into our closet, to let all the worldly stimuli subside, and to know that the primary concern, the primary passion is to be deeply in touch with another dimension of who we are—to know that we are not just a person who’s getting buffeted around by all this stimuli. There is a stature to our Being that lives in the Eternal. The spiritual life is one where we are going into our closet on a regular basis and do it so frequently that we can walk around in the world and carry our closet with us. Now there is a strange image for you!
At Sunrise Ranch we have been speaking about the ability to create a dome of love substance around another person who is with us. We can do that when, because of where we dwell inside, there is a dome of love around us. If it is around us, it can be around the people that are with us.
There is a beautiful elliptical geodesic Dome at Sunrise Ranch, which is a 400-seat chapel and auditorium. For any who know of it, the Dome can be a reminder of the energetic dome that we ought to be bringing into the world. Do you live in a dome of love wherever you are? Do you evoke that energetic reality for the people that are with you? I believe we all have that ability, if we know that the biggest part of us is in the deep, in the Eternal, and enters into the practical.
We each have the power of love within us. We have the ability to let the magic of that power extend into the manifest world around us. This is practical spirituality. We are made to do this. It is the most natural thing, when we are with another person, to create a dome of love for them to be in, a place to rest, a place in which they can come more deeply in touch with their own native intelligence and the flow of that, and their own ability to love. These are the most basic things about our existence as human beings. And yet, as a race, how far away have we come from these most basic knowings?
So we are part of a grand awakening in this day that includes some of those who you know and many people you have never met. We are in cahoots with people known and unknown. As far as I am concerned, they are all welcome. And as far as I’m concerned, in an important way, they are all the same. If you are interested in your own spiritual awakening, and in the spiritual awakening of humanity, we are sharing this creative work whether we have known each other a lifetime or whether we have never met.
Recently, with three friends, I attended a gathering that included many people interested in ufology—the study of UFOs and our relationship with extraterrestrials. Interpreted one way, you might think of little green men from Mars or whatever it is in people’s imagination. There is a reality behind the sensationalism, and the reality is that we as human beings are not the only intelligence in the cosmos. Sometimes we wonder if we are the only ignorance in the cosmos!
Some of the people who follow ufology have the belief that the human race doesn’t come from here. It may be strange to think that our origin is in outer space. I had a chance to speak briefly to the group of about 300 people at the gathering on this point. I reminded them that in our own Bible, Jesus says that while he was in the world, he was not of the world. And that the same was true of his disciples. The truth is that none of us come from this world. We come from the eternal into this world. The knowing of this reality is deep within all people. We are in this world but not of it. However interpreted, and however buried, this knowing calls to us and demands that we awaken to it. For a person for whom that knowing is close to the surface of conscious awareness, they may feel out of place in the world in which they live.
We have a special opportunity, coming into the solstice of this year. There is a call from the deep to come home; to acknowledge more deeply than we ever have before that the greatest part of us still lives in that reality. When we truly know that for ourselves, we are bringing what is not of this world into this world. The love that is within us isn’t of this world. It isn’t just a human love. There is a universal love that is within us, that is us, and it’s vast and it’s unending. Unlike merely human love, it is unconditional. It doesn’t stop. We could stop it in our own human experience, but it doesn’t stop. If we are open to it, it just keeps coming through us. And it doesn’t matter what anybody else does, and it doesn’t matter what happens. It was here before you got here on earth, and it’s going to be here after you’re no longer on earth. And the same is true for me. It was the reality of who you were before you came here, and it will be that same reality when you go.
The truth is, it is who you are and it is who I am; and whether it enters into this physical flesh or does something else someplace else, I know not where, it is who I am and who you are. And it’s easy to say and it’s easy to talk about, but let’s live this reality so that we get it all the way through us. From head to toe, all our thinking and all our feeling, all our stories, all our everything just gets it. It’s not just a good idea; it’s not just happy spiritual talk. It is what’s real.
We are here to embody this reality. We tell the world about it in various ways; we may even teach about it. All of that is a small part of our work, because none of our telling or our teaching really goes anyplace until we actually embody the experience in our life, bringing it all the way through thought and feeling, and then through words and actions. That is what allows the reality within us to manifest around us.
None of us do that all alone. Living in this reality, we find that we are very naturally drawn to be with other people who are doing exactly the same thing. We are building a body of experience, a body of thought and feeling, a body of energy and, within that, a vortex of energy.
Embodying that is our gift to the world. It is our legacy and our destiny. We may tell the world and we may teach others to give the gift. But that doesn’t mean anything if we don’t give the gift of embodying it.
So wherever you are around the world, I’ll speak for all of us, to each of us, and bring our collective prayer to each of us as individuals:
Be with us in this. Find your place in the eternal reality of Being. Know that this is your home. Use this time from now to the solstice to listen to what’s moving in your heart, and let it call you all the way home. Allow yourself to be called to the reality of being who you are, called home to that still place within you, so that you live from there in your world, no longer pulled out of the vortex, but at that still place at the center of the whirlwind.
Come December 21st, let us find ourselves fully together in the deep of the Eternal, knowing that by being in that place together, we are invoking the power of creation moving through aware human beings. It is the power of love. We are unleashing in that way the power to heal, to change, and to re-create. It is the power that transforms and transmutes our world.