Friday, June 18, 2010

God is within you

When people ask me if I am religious, I tell them I love God far too much to be religious. "Oh, then you must believe in God?" they inevitably ask. "Of course not," I reply with a smile, "does a fish believe in water?" For me, God is all there is. What's to believe?

Although all the world's major religions agree that God (however they define the term) is omnipresent, it seems that very few of their followers including their clerical hierarchy actually understand what omnipresence really means. And therein lies the source of the world's ills.

For a start, we take our relationship with God far too seriously. We bring so much solemnity to the way we view God awe, veneration, obedience, and the like that we end up creating distance between us and the object of our worship.

Expressions such as "God is my judge," "God forbid," and "God bless you" creep into our language, and consequently our thoughts. People are actually proud to call themselves God-fearing folk. For too many of us, God is somewhere out there, watching and judging us as we struggle through our imperfect lives.

And consider this: Some religions consider the name of God so holy that it is never pronounced. Instead they create a litany of substitute terms so they can talk about God without having to commit the blasphemy of actually using his name.

When practitioners of these religions write about their deity, they are instructed to omit the vowel: G-d. Other religions take the opposite tack. They encourage their devotees to chant or meditate on the name of God for hours at a time.

To their way of believing, focusing on God leads to a state of bliss that opens the door to transcendence and enlightenment. But if God is truly all that is, what can possibly make one of his names more powerful than any other?

For that matter, what is the purpose of naming him (or her or it) in the first place?

Naming anything creates a subject/object relationship between you and the thing named, and that in and of itself means a separation. Every name of God, no matter how holy, drives a wedge between the creator and the created which includes you and me.

This separation is the primal breeding ground for fear, for we then see ourselves as tiny beings, abandoned (or evicted from Paradise) and living on the fringe of an incomprehensibly huge cosmos.

But what if the phrase "God is all that is" were literally true? This is what R Buckminster Fuller must have understood when he said, "God, to me, it seems, is a verb not a noun." His words, when I first read them, lodged in my mind.

But I didn't get their full import until many years later, during my first visit to Findhorn, the renowned spiritual community in northeast Scotland.

It was there, sitting in a circle with my fellow newbies, that the penny dropped. One young man in our group, Peter, suddenly exclaimed, "Oh, wow, I finally see it. It is not that God is in all things; it's that God is all things."

His exclamation triggered two remarkable realisations for me. First, the obvious is obvious only to those who are sufficiently present to see it. The delivery of Peter's life-changing epiphany had virtually no effect on the rest of the group.

Our facilitator was so consumed by his orientation agenda that he missed the moment completely. Thanking Peter for his contribution, he simply asked the group if anyone else had anything to share.

Second, what Peter said is literally true. In an instant, Bucky's words became crystal clear. God is indeed a verb. He is not the creator. He is the ongoing unfoldment of creation itself. There is nothing that is not a part of this unfolding. Thus there can be nothing separate from God. God is infinite and infinity is One.

From that moment, everything in my life began to change. It wasn't immediate; it was rather like a giant oil tanker slowly making a U-turn. As if I were facing in a new direction, I looked at the world in a new way "How," I asked myself, "do we dupe ourselves so completely? How come so few people see what Bucky and Peter see? How could I myself have been so blind?"

When we perceive God as a noun, we envision him as the creator, the architect of, and therefore separate from, his creation.

Identifying ourselves as part of that creation, we see ourselves not only separate from our source but separate from each other and all other manifest things as well. This is the fatally flawed axiom underlying virtually all of the world's faiths.

Once I viewed God as a verb instead of a noun, my perception of life shifted. Everything around and its manifestation became God. There was only God. When someone spoke to me, it was with God's voice; when I listened, it was with God's heart. I invite you to try it.

The small shift from noun to verb may well be the antidote to the forbidden fruit that banished us from Eden. As you begin to view God not as the creator but as the constantly changing dance of creation itself, you'll discover him in everything you see including yourself.

On Being a Genius

I invite you to reflect on and bring into your life these characteristics found in inspiring Geniuses:

1) They know their mission. Or they make one up that inspires them!

2) They take daily action in alignment with their chosen mission.

3) They focus exclusively on thoughts that strengthen that mission. They mentally "cancel" all other ideas immediately, and persistently.

4) They relate to and communicate with others in a sincere, heart warming and loving way.

5) The person / task at hand is treated as the most important person / task in the world.

6) They practice until they are highly efficient and deeply competent.

7) When knowledge is required, they know how to access it immediately.

8) They translate knowledge into clear and definite plans of action.

9) The always act from a place of love, joy and laughter.

10) The most important aspect of all in every Genius, is the complete alignment of their whole being with their life mission.

This much is enough.

Bring these lessons into your life.
Awaken the Genius within.
Come, step forward...the world needs your Genius right now!

PS: This sharing was inspired by David Wolfe & Nick Good

Who will remember you? And why?

Answer the questions below as best you can...

1. Name the five wealthiest people in the world.

2. Name the last five winners of the Miss Universe.

3. Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize.

4. Name the last half dozen Academy Award winners for best actor and actress.

5. Name the last decade's worth of World Series winners.

How did you do?

The point is, none of us remember the headliners of yesterday. These are no second-rate achievers. They are the best in their fields. But the applause dies. Awards tarnish. Achievements are forgotten. Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners ...

Here's another quiz. See how you do on this one:

1. List a few teachers who aided your journey through school.

2. Name three friends who have helped you through a difficult time.

3. Name five people who have taught you something worthwhile.

4. Think of a few people who have made you feel appreciated and special.

5. Think of five people you enjoy spending time with.


The lesson:

The people who make a difference in your life are not the ones with the most credentials, the most money, or the most awards. They are the ones that care.

Why not live in a way that your name is inscribed on people's hearts...its a lot more meaningful than on marble.

What is Spirituality........???

In a leadership course I teach to MBA students at the University of Notre Dame in the U.S., there is a section entitled “spirituality in the workplace.” The first exercise the students are asked to do is define the term “spirituality”. The responses are many and varied. Some say spirituality is a sense of a higher power, some say it is a feeling of peace, others describe it as something greater than oneself and outside oneself, yet others say it is the true inner self.

So what exactly is a useful working definition of spirituality? First of all, it may be useful to note what spirituality is not . Spirituality is not the same as “religion” and not the same as “morality”. Religion focuses on the beliefs, rituals, myths, and practices that attempt to answer fundamental questions about the nature of “man” and the “universe” and “God”. Morality is concerned with the correct or agreed upon social behavior necessary for a functioning civil society. Spirituality, by contrast, is concerned with the relationship between the aspirant and Atman, God, or the Ultimate Truth. Ultimately, genuine spirituality is the non-separate identification with the Divine State.

My own master, Avatar Adi Da Samraj, has said that two conditions must be present before someone can genuinely begin the spiritual path. First, one must come to the conclusion that the world we perceive with the senses is limited and mortal. Try as we might, ultimately things do not work out-people suffer, our loved ones die, we die. To feel this deeply, but without despair, is what Adi Da calls “positive disillusionment.” Second, is the insight that-in spite of the limited world before our eyes-here is a deeper reality that is untouched by suffering and death. This deeper reality-the spiritual reality-is eternal, unchanging, and a source of great bliss.

We live in a time that values personal development, self-fulfillment, and independence. As a result there are many “do-it-yourself” approaches to spirituality that many find convenient amidst their busy lifestyles. These may include various techniques, exercises, and methods, and the end result may very well be a greater sense of well being. However, such techniques have nothing to do with the deeper reaches of spirituality.

To live an authentic spiritual life requires a genuine Master or Guru. Why? For two reasons. First, the true Guru knows the territory, so to speak. The Guru can guide or instruct the student while taking into account individual needs and karmas. The Great Masters or Sat-Gurus actually embody the enlightened state that the aspirant seeks. Second, the relationship to the Guru generally involves devotional practices of one form or another. Devotion opens the heart and thus allows conscious light or grace to fill the being. It is then that we can live and serve with great energy and compassion. Marvelous!

Practical freedom - "Who am I?" By Nithya shanti

The following process can calm the mind and free it from irrelevant thoughts. It can be applied in any situation and, with practice, becomes a habitual way of dealing effectively with disturbing or destructive thoughts.

Please be guided by your intuition in its appropriate use.


1) State your thought/feeling/pain (out loud or to yourself).


I feel angry with John for calling me names.

This work is hard to do.

My toe is hurting because I stubbed it.

I am sad because Mary is not talking to me.

I am worried about my son/daughter.

This person annoys me with his/her bragging.

I am so depressed I feel l want to die.

2) Separate yourself consciously from your thought/feeling/pain by using the third person.


Who feels angry because John is calling her/him names? (Not: Callingme names). Remember, you need to separate from that part of you who feels angry, sad, hurt, etc. However, this separation is not a “pushing away” of that painful part. You need to focus on it without fear.

Who finds it hard to do this work?

Who feels a pain in his/her toe? (Concentrate on the pain while you say this.)

Who is sad because Mary is not talking to her/him?

Who is worried about his/her son/daughter?

Who is annoyed by this person’s bragging?

Who feels so depressed he/she wants to die?

3) Now become consciously that part of you who has that thought/feeling/pain; make sure that you concentrate, that you become the feeling, if you are aware of one (which is not necessarily the case), that you `breathe’ into it, and then say:

I do, or I am (whichever is grammatically correct).

4)Then, as that part of you who has the thought/feeling, say:


If the thought/feeling/pain is still there, start again, concentrating well.

If another thought/feeling/pain appears, repeat the process.


Never try to answer the question WHO AM I? by saying, for instance: “I am me”, or “I am Mary”, etc. The question does not apply to you as a person, but to that part of you that appears to have a problem. More often than not, no thought will surface after the question. The mind will be blank, which is what we want to achieve. Should a thought appear that has a heavy emotional load, i.e. upsets you more than you can handle on your own, picture the event in your mind as though you were watching it on a movie or TV screen. In other words, make it something that happened but not something you are going through now. This rarely occurs, and it is not an adverse reaction; on the contrary. Just make note of it so that it can be worked on further if it feels appropriate. But with constant practice, you will find that you can deal with it yourself, whatever it is.

Familiarize yourself with this technique by using it anytime, anywhere. You may want to close your eyes so as to concentrate better, but this is not necessary, nor even advisable at times, to do so unless you are in a safe place. After a time, it becomes a natural reflex. The benefits that accrue can be remarkable.

The same technique can be used to anchor positive thoughts/feelings, like:

I feel peaceful

Who feels peaceful?

I do.

Who am I?

Make sure you focus/concentrate on, even become, the good feeling. See what happens!

At first, people appear confused by the way this technique works. I say to them: “Imagine that a tiger is entering this room. Would I ask you to say: `I am afraid of this tiger. Who is afraid? I am. Who am I?’ “

People invariably laugh and say: “Of course not! We would both escape through the window!”

I then pursue:

“Of course you would, because you would be facing a real danger and you would be experiencing a `Fear Fight Flight’ reaction caused by adrenaline pumping into your system (shallow and faster breathing, heart pumping faster, tightening diaphragm, etc.) The funny part is that you set off the same reaction with your thoughts, even when there is no real tiger threatening you. I call these thoughts `paper tigers’. In fact, you are literally scaring yourself to death… eventually.

With the Who Am I? technique, you challenge that part of your brain that causes these useless `Fear Fight Flight’ reactions. After a time, your subconscious learns not to react in such a wasteful manner to thoughts that are only the product of faulty coping mechanisms, of baseless belief systems, of conditioned reflexes, etc., etc.”

Practice makes perfect!