April, 2013

Dear Advice,

I have been blessed by the teachings that Neale and other like-minded souls have provided. I was wondering what I can do about my situation. I am currently in the military, and I have a wife and three children. I don’t like war, but I’m about to get deployed to Korea for a possible conflict. I am determined to let God work through me, but I experience sadness when I think about the potential violence and death that could happen in Korea. I was deployed to Afghanistan a few years ago, and the trauma of war is terrible. The military is my physical source of income, and it appears to be the only option for supporting my family. I feel some guilt because of my occupation, and what it causes me to potentially do; however, my wife and children need a loving, providing father.  My wife is partially disabled as well, so her working at a job is partially unreasonable.

Thank you for your answers,
G.M.G., El Paso,TX

Dear GMG,

As you know, there are no easy answers to this one.  There are the physical and the spiritual, and there is how to combine them.

The current reality is, as I see it, that you have a legal contract with the U.S. Government.  I took the liberty of contacting a very good friend of mine, who is an ex Staff Sargent, to ask him what he would counsel.  His first thought was to suggest that you go to your unit’s chaplain and approach the subject with him (knowing the military, it might even be prudent to do the “hypothetically, if a person felt…” thing), and see what he/she might say about how to become a conscientious objector.  This may not be possible, though, since your deployment to S. Korea is not considered in a conflict area at this point.

Now, should you wish to, and are able to, pursue any track that gets you out of the military before your tour is up, it could cause you to lose your benefits as well, which, given your family situation does make your decision much more complicated.  Since going to Korea is usually a 1-year unaccompanied tour, I assume you have at least that left?  Might you have been in long enough to “retire”?

However, we now move to the spiritual side…we often say we have no choice in the matter, when, in fact, we really do have a choice.  We just don’t like accepting the consequences of what one choice would be.  We are, also, conditioned to make the “easy” choice, even though that choice may just be delaying making the choice we really should make, or is simply the one we have been told is the “right” choice.  Often, even though something nags at us, we do what others…culture, religion, government, family, friends…tell us is the right thing to do, rather than what our gut tells us would really work for us, on a level too often not worked into the mix…our soul level.

I am going to suggest you also reach out to your family.  If you haven’t already, sit down with your wife, and your children (if they are old enough to understand), and tell them how you are feeling.  Discuss that a huge part of your decision rests in what you perceive your responsibility is to them.  GMG, there is a real possibility that they don’t expect you to do something that is harming you in this way.  I would let them know what your vision is of what you would like to do, and why, and ask them how they would create your vision.  If you would like them to be part of you life, it can only work if they have a voice in what that life looks like, and how it gets created.  Remember…they are on this journey with you, co-creating with you. Remember, too, that children, because they don’t have all of the clutter of culture, religion and more, often have the greatest insights!

So, how do you apply the Spiritual knowing you have growing in you…you don’t like war…to all of these real (in the physical level) aspects of your life?

I believe you have to move to the first level of truth telling.  Tell the truth about yourself to yourself. Someone recently put it to me this way: The highest virtue is being truthful. What “works” for us doesn’t always look compatible with our physical circumstances.  Telling the truth to ourselves, about what we are feeling, will often make us feel isolated from what the world says we should feel. However, when we are truthful with ourselves, it opens the door for all possibilities to appear.

Then we have to make sure that we put no boundaries around possibilities!  We do that so very often by having a very specific view of what the solution to a problem should look like.  We most often want that road of least resistance, when it is the messy road that our soul tells us we should take.  When you are truthful with yourself, you will know what the “right” road is.  That’s what gut feelings are all about.  Our bodies connect the mind and the soul.

And then there are your children.  What do you wish to example to your children?  What do you feel you are exampling now?  What do you think you would example by doing something different?  Which would have the most positive long-term benefit to your children…and your wife…and you?

Having said all of that, let me conclude with this: There are no “right” and “wrong” choices to be made here.  As CWG states, there is only what works and doesn’t work.  We get to define what “works” for us.  Sometimes things that once worked don’t any longer.  Sometimes what would never have seemed like a possibility in our lives, is now the perfect choice, if not the easiest choice.  And knowing what that perfect choice is comes from, yup, telling the truth about ourselves, to ourselves.

I am now going to suggest that you find some time to just sit quietly and meditate.  I am going to suggest a very simple meditation.  Begin at the top of your head and just feel every inch of your body…from the top down, and then back up again.  When you have a thought (and you will!) don’t judge it, simply acknowledge it, thank it, and move on.  The same thing for body sensations…notice, thank, move on.  Do not linger in the thought or sensation.  Do this for 15 minutes to 1 hour.  It may be difficult to go more than 15 minutes the first time or two.

Why do I suggest you do this?  Because doing this brings your mind fully, and only, into the present moment.  It eliminates the clutter for that brief period of time…and does much the same thing as rebooting your computer does.  It gives your mind a chance to de-clutter and and allows for the possibility of new thoughts.

GMG, I would also like to invite you to join The Changing Change Network at www.changingchange.net .  This is the website Neale Donald Walsch created to support the book “When Everything Changes, Change Everything.”  The membership is free.  The book, in its entirety, is on the site to read…for free.  And, most importantly of all, there are volunteer Spiritual Helpers there who will dialogue with you about moving through dramatic change in your life…and I think this is a pretty dramatic time for you right now.  It has some pretty powerful stuff, that can help you find your answers.

Finally, I would ask you to be kind to yourself, no matter what decision you make.  You have had a lifetime of data, and changing your thoughts about that data will not always happen overnight.  Just know that you are on the “when you know better, you do better” path, and that is enough.

Therese

(Therese Wilson is a published poet, and is the administrator of the global website at www.ChangingChange.net . She may be contacted at:                                                              Therese@TheGlobalConversation.com.)

(If you would like a question considered for publication, please submit your request to Advice@TheGlobalConversation.com, where our team is waiting to hear from you.)

An additional resource:  ChangingChange.net offers spiritual assistance from a team of non-professional/volunteer Spiritual Helpers responding to every post from readers within 24 hours or less. Nothing on the CCN site should be construed or is intended to take the place of or be in any way similar to professional therapeutic or counseling services.  The site functions with the gracious willing assistance of lay persons without credentials or experience in the helping professions.  What these volunteers possess is an awareness of the theology of Conversations with God.  It is from this context that they offer insight, suggestions, and spiritual support during moments of unbidden, unexpected, or unwelcome change on the journey of life.



I am a big supporter of the locavore movement. It makes sense that wherever you live, everything you need to thrive can be grown right where you are – so why truck in food from thousands of miles away, thus leaving a huge carbon footprint? An arctic native wouldn’t have much use for fresh pineapple every day, and I doubt that equatorial folks would thrive well on whale meat and fat. Assuming that everything we need is or can be available where we are, what are we meant to use for medicine? To answer that question, I took a look at farmer’s markets across the USA and Canada last year. Your medicine is right in front of you, ready for you to take home!

One food we ignore the most with the highest health price to pay is any kind of greens. We know we need vegetables, but do you count french fries as a vegetable serving?  We need vegetables of all colors. But we especially need dark green leafy vegetables.

Greens contain tons of vitamins and minerals. Greens help detoxify your blood, prevent cancer and other disease. Greens are good for liver function and help build a health intestinal flora. Greens help keep your system alkaline, therefore creating an environment in which bad bacteria and diseases like cancer can’t stand!

The best greens are kale, cabbages, broccoli, dandelion and mustard greens, arugula, swiss chard, spinach, and beet greens. If you like lettuce, stick with the dark green, red, or purple kinds! While iceberg lettuce is sort of green, it really doesn’t have the nutritional value of deeply colored greens, so don’t count restaurant salads and condiments that include iceberg lettuce as a green.

You need to eat greens with every meal. You can add spinach or spring mix to your breakfast smoothie and you won’t even know it is there. Get adventurous and make green smoothies with kale and spinach! If you eat scrambled eggs, serve them on a bed of greens, or throw the greens in for the last few minutes of cooking time! At lunch you can add greens to your sandwiches and wraps, or add a handful to your soup! Choose greens instead of other filling items at restaurants and you will naturally leave behind less healthy foods such as potatoes, starches, breads, and white rice.

When a patient becomes sick, one of the first things a doctor will prescribe is folic acid. Folic acid is nothing more than the synthetic version of folate. Folate comes from the Latin word “folium” which means leaves! You can avoid medical visits in the future by just adding the greens now so you won’t be prescribed the synthetic version later!

I wonder what kind of medicine God would want us to take. It makes sense that everything we need has been put here for us for a reason and within our reach naturally. God inspired Hippocrates when he said “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Eat your greens.

(Beth Anderson is a certified Holistic Health Coach and founder of the Holistic Health Hotspot in Evansville, Indiana. She is also the author of “The Holistic Diet: Achieve Your Ideal Weight, Be Happy and Healthy for Life.” Beth received her training from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. She is a speaker and also presents workshops on health and nutrition topics. Beth offers in-person and phone consultations – contact her through email or Facebook for more information. You can find Beth on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/HolisticHealthHotspot or email her at beth@holistichealthhotspot.com)



My Dear Companions on the Journey…

Today’s “Are We Done Yet?” headline: U.S. SAYS SYRIAN GOVERNMENT MAY HAVE USED CHEMICAL WEAPONS AGAINST ITS CITIZENS.

That headline follows by days the news of the Boston bombing, and the weeks of endless threats by North Korea of atomic warfare. Every morning humanity awakens to another in an endless succession of stories of violence or threats of violence by one group of human beings upon another.

As this continues, a central question looms larger and larger every day: How much longer must this go on before our species realizes that a fundamental shift in its ideas about itself is the only thing that will stop this endless slide toward our own self-destruction?

A report from National Public Radio says that “multiple reports in recent days have cited the possible use of chemical weapons around the Syrian cities of Damascus and Aleppo last month and an earlier one in Homs. Victims reportedly suffered burns, blisters, breathing problems, severe irritation to the eyes and even blindness.”

The NPR report was careful in noting that such symptoms may also be caused by conventional weapons of war. White phosphorus, for instance, is “a component in some artillery shells that is not a chemical weapon. It produces large clouds of smoke and can cause the types of injuries that have been reported,” the NPR report said.

Nevertheless, the assessment of other nations, not just the U.S. (among them, France, Great Britain, and Israel) is that some from of chemical weapon has likely been employed against the Syrian rebels by the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

What will be the “Are We Done Yet?” headline tomorrow?

NEWS ANALYSIS – Part One

Are we done yet? Have we had enough yet? Are we ready now, at last, to do something about humanity’s inhumanity? What will it take for the human race to stand up en masse and say, “No more. We are done with this.”

Can we bring about the Miracle of the Ages? Is our species capable of creating a new world headline?

HUMANITY RENOUNCES SEPARATION

Human beings can split the atom, create a cure for disease, send a man to the moon and crack the genetic code of life itself. Yet, sadly, many people, perhaps the largest number, cannot do the simplest thing.

Get along.

Why is this, do you imagine? Do you think it may have anything to do with the fact that we do not see ourselves as Family, but, rather, insist on telling ourselves a Story of Separation? Right now we are embracing a Separation Theology on this planet. Separation Theology is a way of looking at God that insists that we are “over here” and God is “over there.”

The problem with a Separation Theology is that it produces a Separation Cosmology. That is, a way of looking at all of life that says that everything is separate from everything else. And a Separation Cosmology produces a Separation Psychology. That is, a psychological viewpoint that says that I am over here and you are over there. And a Separation Psychology produces a Separation Sociology. That is, a way of socializing with each other that encourages the entire human society to act as separate entities serving their own separate interests. And a Separation Sociology produces a Separation Pathology. That is, pathological behaviors of self-destruction, engaged in individually and collectively, and producing suffering, conflict, violence, and death by our own hands—as evidenced everywhere on our planet throughout human history.

We can change all that. But the important element there is the word “we.” It will take many of us. Millions of us. But “we” can do it.

(In Part II of this analysis: No Fair. “The world is a better place than it has ever been.” Is this true?)

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EDITOR’S NOTE: You may find it valuable and interesting to read two other articles on this Home Page. (1) OF ADDITIONAL INTEREST: One Possible Response to Violence in Our World; and (2) the article at the bottom on the right-hand column headlined And Finally…



A deeper look at loss

Beyond the appearance of every personal storyline, loss has nothing to do with the choices being made. Every form of loss is orchestrated on a soul level prior to incarnation. This indicates that choices determine how consciously or unconsciously we deal with the things we face, having nothing to do with an outcome already determined on a level of existence void of any sense of personal will. As the grace of loss is experienced, patterns of attachment are released out of your energy field in a spontaneous form of cellular healing. In the absence of attachment, the simultaneous death of ideas called past or future reveals the natural ability to be totally open, authentic, and honest in relationships.

It is here where we discover the essential freedom of being nourished by how deeply we give instead of needing to be fed by what we assume we’ll get. Until such a depth of authenticity is tasted within the presence of life’s timeless love affair, every remaining pattern of attachment is inevitably healed by the spontaneous losses revealed in time throughout the impermanent nature of momentary experiences. This is the primary sense of transformation occurring in the play of relationships, whether between family members, friends, or lovers. When we are unaware of the deeper purpose relationships serve in our own evolution, we may find ourselves caught in the grip of perpetual disappointment until our healing is complete.

Depending upon how consumed we are with the world in view, we may be unknowingly avoiding such healing by attempting to outrun the transformative power of loss in a heart-breaking dream, where nothing but desperation is hypnotized by its own lingering fragrance. No matter what occurs, loss is not anything to fix. It is something we survive.

Matt Kahn2012(Matt Kahn is a spiritual teacher, mystic, and intuitive healer. His spontaneous awakening arose out of an out-of-body experience at the age of 8, and his direct experiences with ascended masters and archangels throughout his life. Many spiritual seekers have experienced amazing, unexplainable healings, and have awakened to their true nature through Matt’s profound and loving teachings and his transmission of sacred heart wisdom. Matt is the author of the forthcoming book, “Effortless Freedom – A Timeless Dialogue of Life’s Deepest Teachings.” www.TrueDivinenature.com)

(If you would like to contribute an article you have authored to the Guest Column, please submit it to our Managing Editor, Lisa McCormack, for possible publication in this space. Not all submissions can be published, due to the number of submissions and sometimes because of other content considerations, but all are encouraged. Send submissions to Lisa@TheGlobalConversation.com. Please label the topic: “Guest Column.”)



Part 3: Beliefs behind Boston

In the wake of the Boston Marathon Tragedy, two suspects were quickly identified. Tamerlan Tsarnaev, a former champion boxer, was the clear leader of the operation. Yet Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, also known as Suspect #2, is the one who seems to be on everybody’s mind. Why? Because at only 19 years old, Dzhokhar has committed one of the worst terrorism assaults on American soil of this century. How, and Why, could a teenager commit such a horrible atrocity?   

Throughout all the numerous reports on Dzhokhar’s interrogations, it has been noted repeatedly that his brother Tamerlane influenced and recruited him to participate in the bombing plot. Clearly, at some point in his journey, Dzhokhar became fully immersed and decided to partake in his brother’s radical activities. Was this his true sense of self? We’re not sure, but certainly this was not his highest sense of self.

The reason why I’ve decided to include this topic in this series is because it has everything to do with teenagers handling social sway and group dynamics. The level of immersion that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev had with Tamerlan’s ideology was very, very, deep; so deep, in fact, that he lost the light of reason. The influence of his brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, had become too ingrained into Dzhokhar’s physical, psychological, and (this hurts) spiritual perspective for him to remain uninvolved. Whatever “dream” Dzhokhar had, supposedly to finish medical school and become a doctor, became overshadowed by his fixation with this terrorist thought. With his brother’s strong presence, Dzhokhar’s own presence seems to have been completely overshadowed. With Dzhokhar’s situation, I realized that his social dynamics could be broken down into a simple formula:

Immersion + Influence = Extremism (aka Complete Loss of Choice)

This same level is not only reflected in the Boston Bombings, but also in the lives of teens across the world. This group extremism can manifest itself violently in gangs, or it can appear much more subtly in athletics, Greek life, and other cliques. Gang activity and its influence on teenagers can be seen in the cities of Chicago, London, Cape Town, and even Beijing. In both small villages and vast megacities, teens are falling out of grace and falling in with the wrong crowd. And, like every parent fears, teens are making decisions that are extremely opposite of their highest potential.

My question for teens, and especially for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, is simply this: what group is so worth being involved in that you lose yourself? If it is simply a matter of trying to be “cool,” it is not worth it. If it is a way to be “fun”, it is not worth it.  If it is the best attempt to be “popular,” it is not worth it.  The Self – the mind, the body, the spirit – is the beautiful manifestation of your consciousness. Why dilute it with someone else’s ideas to create a darker vision of an inferior version of you? Teens have the choice, and they can choose Who They Are in the context of every situation.

Some teens, however, still don’t believe that they have power in their choices. Using the equation from above, there is a way to incorporate choice into those beliefs: through the power of detachment.

          If you are in a situation where you cannot avoid the influence, choose not to become immersed. You can observe the beliefs and actions of the group, but decide not to become involved if the group’s direction does not match the direction of your own moral compass. Giving healthy distance will keep immersion from becoming over powerful.

          If you are in a situation where you cannot avoid immersion, decide not to become influenced. Deciding to act as an individual within a group is not an easy task, but it is manageable. Remember your core beliefs, and your sense of self, will keep you on your path.  

          If you are in a situation where you have experienced both high levels of immersion and influence, make a conscious effort to detach yourself from the situation as frequently as possible. By taking a moment of step outside the group/gang/ideology, the activities and beliefs of the group/gang/ideology can be reviewed holistically, or as a whole. Through analyzing what’s really being said and what’s really going, it becomes very clear on what is truly happening, and whether or not you want to fully embody the group’s purpose in your own life.  

With this in mind, we can stay true to our own physical, psychological, and spiritual beliefs. Instead of falling under the influence, we can choose to be guided by our own self in our own decisions. Having the awareness to know who and what is in control of the group, and possibly you, is vital in remaining centered with your own state of being. With this in place and present, the world can make sure that there will never be another Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.  

(Lauren is a Feature Editor of The Global Conversation. She lives in Wood Dale, IL, and can be reached at Lauren@TheGlobalConversation.com)



The 12 Steps are based on the admittance of one’s powerlessness over their particular addiction or compulsion.  The irony of doing this is that it takes incredible personal power to make the statement that you are powerless.  The decision to admit powerlessness over our disease is not an easy one.  It always comes at the end of a long battle, with many heartbreaks and material losses.  It is literally the U-turn we are making from being dysfunctional into a very powerful creator.

Addiction and co-dependency are the same disease.  Most people do not understand it in that way.  The addict uses a drug or behavior that stimulates the mid-brain chemical reaction known as the Brain Reward Cascade.  The co-dependent uses thoughts and actions to stimulate the exact same process.  I was coaching a client recently who has a family member suffering from addiction.  Midway through the call, I referred to her as an addict.  She was stunned and replied that nobody has ever called her that before.

I went on to explain that anytime we rely on an outside source to control our own happiness, we are playing the “reward cascade” game.  Co-dependency, much like gambling addiction, shopping addiction, and sex addiction, are considered the pure addictions.  This is because the desired result does not come from any external source.  They are thought and action-driven addictions which stimulate the dopamine release, providing us the reward we are seeking.

Once we have the awareness that we have a disease, a continuing and progressive illness, we are put in the position of making a choice.  Do I continue with my behavior in spite of my knowledge?  Or do I accept my condition and make the necessary changes?  This is pure power and control, the opposite of powerlessness.  Granted, we cannot recover ourselves.  We do need help and guidance from others.  Again, we are placed in a position of using power to do what is needed to make sure that we rehabilitate the behaviors that no longer work for us.

Our thoughts create our emotions.  Most people are not aware that this is how our brain works.  Have you ever been walking down a street at night when the thought comes to your mind that it may not be safe?  What happens?  Your heart starts racing.  Your breath becomes rapid and shallow.  You simply had a thought that triggered the body’s “fight or flight” response.  This thought was created by you.  It didn’t just happen to come across your mind; you created it.  What’s more, you likely created it out of data in your brain from an external source without any relevance to what is real in that moment.

This is how we operate most of the time.  We come from data external to our self and act as though it is the God-given truth.  We end up building our life around these beliefs we have about how life is, and those beliefs are typically created out of faulty data.

Recovery is all about using our power to change our beliefs that are based on faulty data.  The 12 Steps provide the necessary tools for experiencing life from a place of power rather than of powerlessness.  Abstinence simply is not a satisfying enough response to the admittance of our inability to control our use of drugs and behaviors, but changing our perspective from one of “life is happening to us” to one of “life is happening through us” will repair our low self-esteem and allow for life’s greatest joys to be experienced.

(Kevin McCormack C.A.d, is an addictions professional and Conversations with God life coach.  Kevin hosts an Addictions and Recovery column on the website www.TheGlobalConversation.com.  He is a recovering addict with over 26 years of sobriety.  Kevin is a co-host of “Conversations with God on Recovery” workshops and retreats.  The next retreat will be held June 23rd – 26th in Medford, Oregon.  To contact Kevin, visit his website www.Kevin-spiritualmentor.com or email him at Kevin.spiritualmentor@gmail.com)



This is the first in a series of entries from a chapter that I was invited to contribute to the 2013 book titled The Light, compiled by Keidi Keating. The book seeks to empower readers to reawaken their Inner Light via a series of universal truths. Others contributed chapters as well, including Don Miguel Ruiz, Marci Shimoff, Barbara Marx Hubbard, John-Rogers, Terry Tillman, and John Perkins. All net profits from the book go to charity. My chapter in this book follows in the posts here.

PART ONE…

You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men.
~ Matthew 5:14-16

People ask all the time, “Am I really the Light?” There is nothing in the universe that is not Divine. Everyone and everything is the Light. Divinity is expressed through life itself at every level and in every way.

The Light shines with increasing brightness from beings who have expanded their level of consciousness. People who know themselves as the Light will experience themselves as that, and others will experience them as that as well.

When I asked God what it would take for me to get to the place for which I so deeply yearned, He chuckled and said, “Neale, I get that you still think your life is about you, but your life has nothing to do with you. It doesn’t now, it never did and it never will.

“On the other hand, if you are clear that I sent you here in a state of utter perfection and it is only you who have imagined yourself not to be in that state, then you will move through the world no longer concerned about yourself at any level. In fact, your only concern will be for all those whose lives you touch. You will, therefore, give to another what you have sought to obtain for yourself.”

The fastest way to experience yourself as the Light is to cause another to experience themself as the Light, for what you give to another you give to yourself, and that will become eternally true in your experience.

Don’t  go  around  asking:  what  are  we  to  eat, what are we to drink, wherewithal  will we clothe ourselves?   Seek  ye  first  the  kingdom  of  heaven and  all  these  things  will  be  added  unto  you.
~The Gospel According to Matthew Chapters 31-33

So yes, you are the Light, but the fastest way for you to experience that is to make sure that everyone whose life you touch sees themselves, knows themselves, and experiences themselves as the Light, And they will know themselves as that depending upon how you interact with them and how you see them.

As you give them their own sense of being the Light, so too will you grant that same sense to yourself. The masters have put this in one sentence: “Do unto others as you would have it done unto you.”

When people ask me, “Am I the Light?” I ask them, “Am I? How do you see me?” If they see me as the Light then I say, “Good, now see the next one hundred people you meet as the Light and you will begin seeing yourself as that. But so long as you have judgment about another and see them as less than the Light, you can never experience yourself as the Light. You will experience yourself as you experience the world around you, and it can be no other way.”

(More information on the book titled The Light may be found by clicking this link.  The book may purchased here:)

 

 



I am getting married in August to the most wonderful guy I’ve ever known. My fiance and I both knew we had something very special from the first time we met, and our relationship is very strong and happy. We’re both excited about the prospect of spending the rest of our lives together, but I am a little nervous. My parents had a nasty divorce after twenty years. My father had an ongoing affair and lied about it, eventually marrying the other woman. I know he didn’t mean to hurt my mom, but I really don’t want that to happen to us! Does Conversations With God have any advice about how to make a relationship survive and thrive? Thank you for any help you can give me… Amy

Dear Amy… I’m so glad I received this letter from you. Although any of the three of us who write this column, Nova and Therese included, could have helped you because we all know the CWG material so well and are all happily married, I experienced the exact same scenario as you. And… my husband, Greg, and I are celebrating our 23rd wedding anniversary this month!

I have actually started writing a book on this subject because it is so near and dear to my heart, but for now, here are some pointers to get you started. Since you asked specifically for advice from Conversations With God, I’m only including those. Hope it helps, and congratulations!

Place no requirements on each other. Make only requests. 

Freedom is the essence of who we are and the fastest way to get someone to leave the space is to limit their freedom with requirements. When Greg and I got married, I told him I only had one request of him: That if he ever fell in love with someone else, he would be honest with me about it. I told him I understand that these things happen and although it would hurt me very much, it would hurt even worse if he were not honest about it. 23 years later, that is still my only request of him. The truth can hurt, but falsehood hurts even more. Even more importantly, the truth heals.

Speak your truth as soon as you know it, but soothe your words with peace and loving kindness. 

Don’t hold things in. Give your partner the freedom of a loving space in which to share everything, both what’s working and what’s not working for them. I believe in total openness in relationships because if we keep things from each other the relationship becomes dysfunctional. I learned this the hard way with a dear friend of mine, trying to protect her feelings by keeping stuff in until I blew up, which ended up hurting her far worse. It’s much better to just come on out and say it if something is bothering us.

When we keep our partner in the dark about matters large or small, we put a crack in the relationship. When we continue to withhold information about things that bother us, the crack becomes a chasm that can eventually break the relationship in two.

Drop your expectations.

Life = Change = Growth. Go with the flow. Know that things wouldn’t be happening the way they are if it weren’t for your greatest good—even when it doesn’t look like that right now.

Where am I going and who’s going with me?

Never reverse the order of these two questions. This may come as a shock, but put yourself first. Even though it may sound selfish, following the path of our own soul is actually the kindest thing we can do for another. When we follow our partner’s path instead, resentment can build, and when we’re not happy, the relationship cannot thrive.

The magic happens when the two of you marry your paths together in such a way that both of you are following your individual soul’s journeys together. This requires clarity, communication and commitment, and it is a beautiful thing when it works. The whole of the two of you is greater than the sum of its parts. Life gets exponentially better and better!

(Annie Sims is the Global Director of CWG Advanced Programs, is a Conversations With God Life Coach and author/instructor of the CWG Online School. To connect with Annie, please email her at Annie@TheGlobalConversation.com

(If you would like a question considered for publication, please submit your request to:  Advice@TheGlobalConversation.com where our team is waiting to hear from you.)

An additional resource:  ChangingChange.net offers spiritual assistance from a team of non-professional/volunteer Spiritual Helpers responding to every post from readers within 24 hours or less. Nothing on the CCN site should be construed or is intended to take the place of or be in any way similar to professional therapeutic or counseling services.  The site functions with the gracious willing assistance of lay persons without credentials or experience in the helping professions.  What these volunteers possess is an awareness of the theology of Conversations with God.  It is from this context that they offer insight, suggestions, and spiritual support during moments of unbidden, unexpected, or unwelcome change on the journey of life.



We are all saddened by the recent events in Boston. Our hearts go out to those touched by this tragedy. And who is not touched? Now more than ever is a time to come together in love and light. I hope and pray that we do. I hope and pray that we have learned from other similar kinds of tragedy and that we will respond as Martin Luther King suggested to us not that long ago:

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”

Now more than ever it is up to us to spread love and light into the world. Now more than ever it is up to us to demonstrate forgiveness, which does not mean to condone behavior, but rather to release resentment and the behavior that it sponsors, like retaliation. Have we not learned from our past? Do we not clearly see where our energy goes it grows? Have we not compounded tragedy with more tragedy, like war? It would be one thing if war solved problems, but it does not and has not. How high must the cost be before we awaken? Having a war with something only more firmly places it there…what you resists, persists.

The messages of God are clear. Now more than ever it is time for messages like Martin Luther King’s to be embraced, rather than fear. Turn off your TV and pick up any spiritual book. Commit this month to reading it. Commit this month to living its messages. Like the 34 Core Concepts that live within the pages of Conversations with God. Or take on the daily messages of The Course in Miracles. Or any other book that inspires you to be who you really are, rather than being sucked into the fear of the world being broadcast constantly through the television airwaves. Switch it off.

Commit to being who you really are, Love and the Light, and spread your loving energy everywhere you go. Not only will your life change, but so will those around you. You heal the world by first healing yourself.

Peace begins with me. It begins by my healing all of the wrong and small thinking (fear), which creates hell within me and on earth. Love creates the opposite.

Please consider that you have a greater impact on the planet than you may believe or understand. Consider that participating in the healing of the limiting voice within you would make a greater difference than you can even imagine. You know the one I speak of. You know the voice that steals and robs your joy, passion, and freedom to be who you really are. The voice that is denying its existence in your mind right now!

You misunderstand the power of love if you believe that healing yourself would do little to heal the world. It begins with you. When you become who you really are, Love, in every area of your life, the power of your life to heal others is a thousandfold more powerful than that of fear. That is, fear ceases to exist.

The same is true for darkness. Flip the switch in a darkened room and light immediately removes the darkness. If we all commit to flipping our switch — that is, we switch our thoughts, words and actions to love — fear disappears. Today! If we all commit to being the words express by Martin Luther King, inspired by the King of Kings, we would heal the world this moment. That is what every master that has walked this earth taught and teaches to this very day. Will today be the day?

You have the power to heal the world and now more than ever, joining with others to awaken us to the truths that are attempting to reveal themselves through our life circumstances and experiences.

We not need reach a bottom in life to have access to that same kind of wisdom that became available to Neale Donald Walsch in his conversation with God. Whatever your circumstances are in life, having a conversation with God just makes sense. Paying attention to what and where your life is leading you and the wisdom that becomes available because of it is always possible to see. That’s what conscious awareness is, the ability to look and see clearly.

We all, no matter what we have been through, have access to that kind of wisdom. The only question is, will we use the wisdom the process reveals? Will we allow the circumstances of our life to consume us or will we turn to that which is always present and allow that divine process to lead us to our own salvation?

When you are caught in a riptide, attempting to swim against the power of the tide will be your demise (what you resist, persists). When you go with the flow of the energy, and use the power to guide you downstream to safe shores, you allow the experience to present wisdom that only an experience like that can bring…don’t swim against the tide, or said in the positive, go with the flow.

Looking back on any experience to see the wisdom the circumstances were attempting to reveal creates the clarity of the need for the experience itself. Only if you fail to use your experience will you find yourself in similar experiences once again. I call them God Reminders. No matter where you are in life, no matter what is happening, this wisdom and presence is available to you.

Will we use that wisdom now? Will we see clearly? Or will we allow ourselves to fall back into that old familiar pattern that resentment sponsors? Will we use fear to deal with our common human experience or will we break free of the addiction and begin to heal ourselves?

If you could be a King today, would you turn it down? Every messenger like MLK has brought the wisdom to us. Every master like Jesus has demonstrated the wisdom to us. Will you be King for a day? Just one day?

My work and the mission and purpose of the Conversations with God Foundation has never been more important. Your energy and commitment to our work is needed now more than ever, for where your energy goes, it grows. Help me spread the messages of Love and Light to the world, and help me heal the world by committing to healing the kind of thinking that robs you of your joy, peace, and freedom. Help me help others be a king for a day. One day would change everything!

Grieve for what has happened. Forgive others and yourself. And commit to a life and a world where peace is the order of the day.  Peace begins with me. Choose to be a King for a day and watch what happens. The only thing you have to lose is the negative experience the old thinking sponsors.

Finally, please check out our upcoming Recovery Retreat – “ A Path to Peace” at www.cwg.org – could also be called “King for a Day”!

Until then, may the light and love of God touch you all. – JR

J.R. Westen, D.D., C.A.d

(J.R. is a Holistic Health & Spiritual Counselor who has worked and presented side-by-side with Neale Donald Walsch for over a decade. He is passionate about helping individuals move beyond their emotional and spiritual challenges, transforming breakdowns into breakthroughs. His counseling and coaching provides practical wisdom and guidance that can be immediately incorporated to shift one’s experience of life.  As is true for most impactful teachers, J.R.’s own struggles and triumphs inspired him to find powerful ways of helping others. Sober since June 1, 1986, J.R.’s passion for helping individuals move through intense life challenges drove him to also specialize in Addiction and Grief Recovery. J.R. currently shares his gift of counseling & coaching with individuals from around the world through the Wellness Center, Simply Vibrant, located on Long Island N.Y. In addition, he operates “Change House” a place where people come to transform. He also works with Escondido Sobering Services and now serves as the Executive Director of the Conversations with God Foundation.)



My Dear and Wonderful Companions on the Journey…

As the world reflects on the events of these most recent days — from the bloodshed in Syria to the killing in Afghanistan to the bombing in Boston — and on all the terror and all the savagery and all the violence that has emerged from and through people of every race and creed during the course of its long history upon the Earth, the heart of humanity breaks, and the collective mind of humanity cries out…

“What will it take for us to stop ourselves from doing this? Are we truly primitives still, who have found no way to control our most barbaric impulses? Does our desperation remain so acute that we feel lashing out in murderous rage is justified, and is the only announcement of it we feel will be heard? Is there no way to ever, ever put an end to our species’ bestial behaviors?”

In fact, however, the question is larger than that. It is more pointed than that. The question of the day is: Even if there was a way, can we ever gather ourselves together in sufficient numbers to actually employ it? What, if anything, could cause us to unite at last in Singular Purpose?

So far, it has only been calamity.

News reports out of Boston have told of a whole city joining to bring comfort, aid, and succor to bombing victims and their families, and to heal the city itself from its shock and dismay. And so it is, everywhere on the planet where disaster strikes any community. Suddenly, our sense of community is given re-birth. Our humanity is reawakened.

Yet why must it take cataclysm and catastrophe to arouse our awareness of community? Is there nothing else that could cause us to relinquish our “story” of “separation” and embrace the truth of our oneness?

There is.

We could abandon our Story of Separation finally and forever. We could embrace the Story of Oneness at last and always.

All it would take would be numbers. Large numbers of people. All it would take would be a revolution on our planet. It would be the last revolution we would ever need. It would be the Evolution Revolution, and when it was complete, we would have civilized civilization.

I realize this is a big order. There have been massive social revolutions before. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. led one for blacks. Gloria Steinem led one for women. Harvey Milk led one for gays. Mahatma Gandhi led one for an entire nation. Nelson Mandela did the same. And others have done so as well.

Yet now the time of individual revolutionaries has passed. It is the Moment of Movements, and movements are ignited by cohorts, cadres, corps. If a corps can be formed — a global cadre of inspired, motivated, engaged but gentle activists — humanity’s final great revolution, the Evolution Revolution, can and will sweep the planet.

How does such a revolution begin? By people sitting down together and talking about what it is they wish to change, and how they wish to change it. That is what The Conversation of the Century is all about.

Once again I should like to share something from Margaret J. Wheatley, author of Turning to One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future (2002).

This is a globally known consultant on organizational behavior. She received her doctorate from Harvard University, holds an M.A. in systems thinking from New York University, and has worked on every inhabited continent in virtually every type of organization.

In other words, Meg Wheatley knows her way around. Here’s what she says:

“There is no more powerful way to initiate significant social change than to start a conversation…We can take courage from the fact that this is a process we all know how to do. We can also take courage in the fact that many people are longing to converse again…Change doesn’t happen from someone announcing the plan. Change begins from deep inside a system, when a few people notice something they will no longer tolerate, or when they respond to someone’s dream of what’s possible.”

That is precisely, to the letter, what The Conversation of the Century is all about. And here is the Dream of What’s Possible: A new way of being human, arising from a New Cultural Story for Humanity: A Story of Oneness.

What is now being proposed is a global cohort — small groups of people meeting in their homes twice a month to, first, talk about, discuss, analyze and deeply explore the elements of Humanity’s New Cultural Story, and then, to place that story on the ground in cities, towns, and villages around the world, partly through a gentle but persistent brand of civic-social-spiritual activism that epitomizes the spirit of Victor Hugo’s immortal observation: All the armies of the world cannot stop an idea whose time has come.

Thus will be born the Evolution Revolution.

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The Evolution Revolution is a spiritual activism outreach of Humanity’s Team, a global organization founded by Neale Donald Walsch, the author of the Conversations with God series of books and the creator of The Global Conversation internet newspaper. Information on joining the Evolution Revolution by initiating a Conversation of the Century action group may be had by writing to neale.donald.walsch@HumanitysTeam.org