We shake our heads in sadness and dismay. And we ask: Is there any way to civilize civilization? Are we, as human beings, simply unable to resolve our differences in any way other than through the use or threats of force? Is violence just plainly a part of the human condition, built into the barbaric psyche of our species, having to be expressed one way or another whether we like it or not?
The terrible bombing at the Boston Marathon — even as the bloodshed continues in a seemingly endless civil war in Syria, in the same moment that North Korea insists on threatening the entire global community daily by brandishing atomic warheads on ballistic missiles, while the U.S. flies stealth bombers dropping ammunition-free bomb casings over the Korean Peninsula in a display of its own military prowess — raises the question among all thinking people:
What would it take, and how much more is humanity willing to endure, in order for the largest number of the People of Earth to gently but massively rise up and say to all humans everywhere — leaders and rank-and-file citizens alike: “No! Enough. We are through, finished, done with this. We will no longer harbor terrorists, we will no longer sanction violence, we will no longer encourage, threaten, declare or support killing at any time in any place for any reason. We will find another way to resolve our differences.”
I know what it would take, of course. We all do. And it is not a declaration, or a pronouncement, nor a futile and impotent protest. It is a change in the very way that humanity sees itself, understands itself, defines itself, and experiences itself.
There is a way to civilize civilization, but it will more than just a few of us to do it. It will take the lot of us. A huge swath of us. An overwhelming majority of us.
And what, if anything, could produce such a collective cohesive cohort? Do we have enough time left to gather our energies together in such an effort before the forces of violence overtake us completely and destroy us utterly?
Is Boston enough? Is Syria enough? Is North Korea enough? Have we had enough? Are you — you reading this right now — willing to take the first step in forming a collective cohesive cohort?
If you are, let us gather now in cities, towns, and villages around the world and ignite The Conversation of the Century. Let us inspire a global Evolution Revolution. Let us work together, let us mobilize, to “civilize civilization” at last.
And let us begin by stopping trying to solve the problems facing humanity at every level except the level at which those problems exist. Let us invite, urge, inspire humanity to write, and then to live into, a New Cultural Story; a new understanding about ourselves, about who we are, about why we are here, about our True Relationship to each other, to Life, and to the Source of Life Itself, which some of us call “God.”
To create an Evolution Revolution action group in your community write to firstname.lastname@example.org You’ll get a response telling you how to can do something, and not just talk about it, regarding violence in our world.
Also…please, please take a moment to read the article in this edition of The Global Conversation in the lower right-hand column, headlined:
OF ADDITIONAL INTEREST: One Possible Response to Violence in Our World
This is A Message to the World that I wrote on September 12, 2001. I believe it has major relevance today.
Thank you very much for your show of interest by clicking through to this page. It will take you approximately eight or nine minutes to read what I have written here. I know that seems like a lot of time, but over the course of your life you will see it as really very little. Would you grant me the favor of giving me those few minutes? I think it could make a real difference on our planet.
I would never ask you if I did not think that when you’re finished reading this Information Page, you will be excited and ready to answer the call to join with me and others around the globe in doing something constructive, meaningful, and effective to help our world at this present critical juncture on our evolutionary path.
Let me begin by making the case for why to even bother…may I?
Right now, none of the systems we have put into place to make our world a better place are working. Not our political systems, not our economic systems, not our ecological systems, not our educational systems, not our health systems, not our social systems, and not our spiritual systems.
None of them—not one of them—has produced the outcomes for which it was designed, and for which we have collectively yearned. In fact, it’s worse. They have produced exactly the opposite. They have generated outcomes we say we don’t even want.
Our political systems are creating nothing but disagreement and disarray. Our economic systems are actually increasing poverty. Our ecological systems are generating environmental degradation. Our educational systems are failing to educate enough people in enough places to bring our species anywhere near the reaching of its full potential. Our health care systems are doing little to eliminate inequality of access to modern medicines and health care services. Our social systems are known to encourage disparity, prejudice, and injustice. And, perhaps most dysfunctional of all, our spiritual systems are producing intolerance, righteousness, anger, hatred, and violence.
The great sadness is that we imagine we can’t change any of this. The great happiness is that we can. All it takes is a shift in consciousness—and that is easier to bring about than most people think.
All change in consciousness is created by people who have already changed their consciousness, when they actively, excitedly, and expansively talk about their ideas and describe the possibilities that a New Consciousness places before humanity.
Let me share something here 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.”
I couldn’t have paid her to say something better suited to make the point I wish to make here. In a 2002 article in Utne Reader Ms. Wheatley observes that “…true conversation is…a timeless and reliable way for humans to think together. Before there were classrooms, meetings or group facilitators, there were people sitting around talking.
“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…We are awakening an ancient practice, a way of being gathered that all humans intimately understand.”
Having said that, Ms. Wheatley offered a powerful concluding comment:
“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 Evolution Revolution is all about. It is a call to people everywhere, gathering in small groups of spiritual activists around the world, to ignite a global conversation (I call it The Conversation of the Century) that will sow seeds of sanity, producing at last the civilization of
We say that our civilization is civilized, but, of course, it is not. We can see that with even a casual glance. No civilization that allows over 600 of its children to die every hour of starvation is civilized. No civilization that kills people to demonstrate that it is wrong to kill people is civilized. No civilization that systematically makes life difficult and challenging and simply unfair for any of its members who happen to be black or female or gay—or belong to any minority group—is civilized. And no civilization that threatens and uses force (economic, social, or political), employs physical violence, and commits mass murder as a means of resolving differences is civilized.
Such an ongoing scenario could only be put in place—and then continually supported—by a race of beings so primitive as to declare barbaric behaviors normal and savage solutions unavoidable. Yet the movement from primitive thinking to advanced contemplations, the shift from lower to higher levels of consciousness, need not take millennia to materialize. Such a shift can occur spontaneously and instantaneously when effective alternatives to clearly undesirable, unworkable, and unprofitable approaches to creating our communal life are offered.
The problem is, none are widely being offered.
This is where YOU come in!
If we are going to make any kind of difference in our world in 2013 and beyond, we are going to have to do two things: (1) Enter (indeed, ignite) a conversation about what needs to be accomplished and how to accomplish it; (2) Get about the business of creating change not only in the things we do, but in the way we think.
This can only be accomplished by doing something revolutionary. Perhaps it is not so revolutionary at that. Science and Medicine and Technology have produced many breathtaking advances by doing it consistently. But in the area of most critical importance to the every day person—our social, cultural, political, and religious beliefs—the majority of human beings have been stubbornly resistant to doing it. And what is it that Science, Medicine, and Technology does that most humans in every day life staunchly refuse to do…?
Question the Prior Assumption
Everything begins, of course, with some sort of original information—and it is that very information that few people wish to question—even if the information is creating disaster.
Humanity has for centuries tried to solve its problems at every level except the level at which those problems exist. It continues to do so today.
We approach our problems as if they were political problems, open to political solutions. We talk about them, we hold debates about them, we pass resolutions about them. When nothing changes, we seek to solve our problems through economic means. We throw money at them, or withhold money from them, as in the case of sanctions. When that fails we say, aha, this is a problem to give to the military. We’ll solve it with force. So we drop bombs on it. That never works, either, if a long-term solution is what anyone is looking for, but do you think we would learn?
No. We just simply the cycle all over again. It’s back to the negotiating table for more talks, then back to the bank for more money, then back to the bombs for more clout.
The reason we keep running like a mouse on a wheel is that no one dares to look at the cause of the ongoing conditions we seem fated to endure. Either we truly don’t know, or we are afraid to admit, that our biggest problem today is not a political problem, it’s not an economic problem, and it’s not a military problem.
The problem facing humanity today is a spiritual problem,
and it can only be solved by taking a long, hard look
at what it is we all believe.
Once this is understood, the solution becomes obvious. Until it’s understood, the solution escapes everyone.
It’s what people believe that creates their behavior. Therefore, it is at the level of belief, not at the level of behavior, where conduct can most profoundly be modified. For decades we’ve been talking in psychology circles about behavior modification, or Behavior Mod. What we really should be talking about is Belief Mod.
Ah, but here we go. Oh, boy. Watch out. We’re talking now about the most sacred part of people’s underpinnings. Many people would rather die for their beliefs—or kill others—than change them.
It doesn’t matter whether the beliefs are functional. It doesn’t matter whether they are actually working, in the sense of making people happy and producing a better life.
Many people would rather be unhappy doing what they believe than happy doing something else. They are actually happy being unhappy. Under this convention, suffering is a virtue. It makes one a worthy person in the eyes of God.
So the spiritual understandings of billions of people on this planet are not insignificant in all of this. You cannot change social conditions by trying to change the conditions themselves. Do you know how long it has been since we’ve been trying to eradicate simple hunger in this world? Do you know how many non-profit organizations have been, and continue to be, undertaking that task? This is just one example of our utter impotence. There are others. The eradication of cruelty to women. The elimination of political persecution for anyone holding views opposite to those in authority. The list goes on and on…and on.
Social conditions can only be changed by changing
the beliefs that produce such conditions.
And that, my dear companions on the journey, is what we now have an opportunity to do. And the wonder of it is that we can do this as part of the process of our own individual evolutionary voyage. We can do it by allowing the evolution in our own personal beliefs to become part of an Evolution Revolution on Earth.
Most of you reading this already agree with what’s been said here. The trick is to get others to agree. In large numbers. “Nothing,” Victor Hugo famously said, “not all the armies in the world, can stop an idea whose time has come.” But first, the idea must be put “out there.” That’s what The Conversation of the Century is designed to do. It is designed to put evolutionarily revolutionary ideas into circulation.
You can ignite such a conversation in your community. And I will join your group, by telephone conference call, in your explorations and in designing your action plan to expand, at last, Humanity’s Cultural Story, offering people around the world a new idea of who we are, why we are here, what it can mean to all of us if we inspire another way to be human.
I am inviting and encouraging all of you to create Evolution Revolution Focused Activities around the globe, including meaningful discussions which can be ignited, and action plans which can be designed, in response to all that we see taking place in our world. These groups would seek to place into the world a compelling invitation for people everywhere to explore how an application of the concepts of a new kind of spirituality could create a planet with far less suffering and turmoil and much more joy and peace for all.
Helpful in this regard might very well be the document found at this link: One Thousand Words That Will Change the World, These are the 25 Core Messages of Conversations with God, and they are not intended to be placed before others as the Be All and End All of answers to our challenges, but as a viable starting point for discussion.
What we are suggesting here is nothing less than a Civil Rights Movement for the Soul, freeing humanity at last from the oppression of its beliefs in a violent, angry, and vindictive God, and releasing our species from a spiritual doctrine that has created nothing but separation, fear, and dysfunction around the world.
It is time for human beings to begin replacing this dogma, finally, with an ethos of unity and cooperation, understanding and compassion, generosity and love. Yet this will take a change of mind and a change of heart. And courage. The courage to reject every notion, every idea, every teaching of a God who would reject us.
The world has contrived to fill ours head with those notions, these ideas and these teachings since we were children. Now, because of the speed of worldwide communication over the Internet, we have a golden opportunity to invite, create, explore and adopt a New Thought about all of this, a thought that runs counter to virtually everything we’ve ever been told or heard about God, about each other, and about Life and what it is really all about.
Here at The Global Conversation internet newspaper we have reserved this section to provide you with discussion group ideas, topics, questions, and action items to use as tools in facilitating your own Evolution Revolution activities in support of the Civil Rights Movement for the Soul. That is the name we have given to a global movement which has been put into place around the world by Humanity’s Team to help our species write and live into a New Cultural Story on our planet — a story based on a new spiritual awareness that could alter forever for the better the way we experience life on Earth.
I envision a Berlin Evolution Revolution Activity Group, a Toyko Evolution Revolution Activity Group, a Buenos Aires Evolution Revolution Activity Group, a Los Angeles Evolution Revolution Activity Group, and similar activity groups all around the world as outgrowths of the Spiritual Sphere of the global action plan of Humanity’s Team.
If you believe it is time to ignite an Evolution Revolution, create an activity group in your community. And here is how I can become part of your group: If you gather at least six people on a regular basis in your home to explore these critical topics, I will join you on a regular basis, electronically and in real time, for an ever-expanding global group discussion that could alter humanity’s future—just as other vital and passionate conversations have changed the course of human history in the past.
To learn more about how you, your family and friends may participate, write to neale.donald.walsch@HumanitysTeam.org.
So where do you begin?
1. Join and support Humanity’s Team: This is a global organization that I created, now with members in 73 countries, that is sponsoring the Evolution Revolution as part of its Twelve Spheres of Life Initiative. You can enroll as a member as part of your participation in this dynamic spiritual outreach.
2. Create a local Evolution Revolution Activity Group and commit to meeting on a regular basis—once a week or once or twice a month, depending on your time availability.
3. Use our website as a tool to facilitate your pod by using the questions and action items we post here as part of your discussions.
You may want to consider opening your first gathering with life’s most critical question, taken from the pages of The Storm Before the Calm. (That book can be read on this website. You’ll find a direct link to it in the lower right hand column of our home page.) The question with which you can initiate your group exploration:
How is it possible for 6.9 billion people to all want the same thing—survival, safety, security, peace, prosperity, opportunity, happiness, and love—and to be unable to produce it, even after thousands of years of trying?
Here are more Evolution Revolution discussion topics…
1. What, if anything, could cause all the people of the world to feel happy, safe, and secure?
2. What understanding or spiritual message do you believe could have a positive effect on seemingly intractable global situations, such as the continuing conflict in Syria, the internationally tense political “standoff” between North Korea and the United States in the Spring of 2013, the latest revolution in Egypt, and other global crises?
Here is an Evolution Revolution Action Item
The Global Conversation will soon be offering a Resource Center that will provide our visitors the e-mail addresses and contact information for some of the world’s most influential leaders and politicians. As well, the mailing list of major global media outlets—newspapers, magazines, television networks, etc.—that help form and shape public opinion.
As your first action item, we invite your Evolution Revolution Activity Group to collaborate on the writing of letters that can be distributed globally, sharing your thoughts, your ideas, and your opinions about what is taking place in our world, and how we can create changes that will benefit all of humanity. If you had the opportunity to spend five minutes with someone who is in a position to influence significant change, what would you say? Put it in a letter. When enough such statements start appearing in Letters to the Editor columns around the world, on the Internet, and yes, in the mailboxes of world figures, change begins to happen.
If you would like your letters to be considered for publication and shared with our global audience here on The Global Conversation, please e-mail them to Lisa@TheGlobalConversation.com.
Thank you for giving me these few minutes to lay all this out for you.
I hope you will join me in creating something
that can bring even greater meaning to your life and healing to your world.
You can begin immediately by sending an email right away to
Just say, “I’m in.”
You’ll get a letter back leading you through
the Start Up Process.
Let’s ignite an Evolution Revolution.
A revolution with a new kind of leader.
The old kind of leader said, “follow me.”
The new leader says, “I’ll go first.”
Stark. Gray. Cold. Inanimate. Apathetic.
These are just a handful of words which describe the bleak environment inside the concrete walls of Fishkill Correctional Institute in New York, a space reserved for those in society whose behaviors have resulted in a loss of their personal freedom, and in some cases an irreversible sentence of a lifetime behind bars. These particular individuals are the castaways, the unredeemable, the lost causes. They are the uncompassionate, the unfeeling, the disconnected. These are the men for whom society has given up all hope for, categorically labeling them as “impossible to rehabilitate.”
Thankfully, Glorida Gilbert Stoga, in collaboration with veterinarian Dr. Thomas Lane, did not believe these blanket generalizations to be true and moved into action by creating a revolutionary program called “Puppies Behind Bars,” providing these forsaken men an opportunity to experience what has been largely denied to them by society: a second chance.
This organization places puppies with inmates in prison as part of a program to train these dogs to become guide dogs for returning injured service men and women, law enforcement officers who have been injured in the line of duty, and disabled children and adults. The puppies spend 16 months with their assigned inmate, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, where they are trained and cared for until the day the dogs are presented to their new family.
As difficult as it is for these men to say goodbye to these beautiful animals with whom they have developed strong bonds and unique relationships, they have each said that the opportunity they were given to connect to a side of themselves they have forgotten they had the capacity to experience is immeasurable. By engaging in a relationship whose intended purpose and outcome is to help someone else, these inmates are discovering that their lives are not about them – at least not in the way they had so far imagined it to be. And through the path of service and compassion, giving back to a world that perhaps they have thus far only taken from, they have been given the greatest opportunity to remember and to experience who they really are.
If a man who has done the unthinkable — perhaps even someone who has taken the life of another human being — can remember how to love and how to feel compassion again through the tiny life of a puppy, don’t we ALL have the ability to begin again and to recreate ourselves anew in any given moment?
The other exciting aspect to this story is the fact that someone just like you, just like me, created this wonderful program simply from an idea, a thought. And instead of burying it in a sea of doubts, fears, and apprehensions, she chose the action love sponsors and is changing the lives of thousands of people for the better by taking the first step. I hope this story serves as an inspiration to you, as it did for me, to move into what’s next. Life really does begin “at the edge of your comfort zone, as the messages of Conversations with God advise us. If you already thought you would succeed, if you were already guaranteed to “win,” would you go for it? Would you take the jump?
What then would you be allowed to know about who you really are and why you are really here?
Note: The Conversations with God Foundation also sponsors a CwG Prison Outreach program in order to share the message of the Conversations with God books with people in jails and prisons, places of darkness where its light is most needed, empowering prisoners to spread the CwG message in their own facilities and to live this message so that they can effect change within their own sphere. For more information about how you can be involved in this wonderful outreach, click here:
(Lisa McCormack is the Managing Editor & Administrator of The Global Conversation. She is also a member of the Spiritual Helper team at www.ChangingChange.net, a website offering emotional and spiritual support. To connect with Lisa, please e-mail her at Lisa@TheGlobalConversation.com.)
In Conversations with God, Book 1, we learn that “…all illness is self-created. Even conventional medical doctors are now seeing how people make themselves sick.”
Let’s look at what you need to do in order to get healthy, stay healthy, and stop making yourself sick.
There are three basic steps you have to take for stellar holistic health. If you are vigilant and careful, you can improve your own health, reduce occurrence of illness, heal yourself, and start feeling great! First you must cleanse and detoxify your body, inside and outside. Get rid of the toxins that are hanging around in your intestines, clogging your arteries, wearing out your organs, and causing symptoms. You must also detoxify your mind, thoughts and relationships. Second, you must learn to avoid toxins in everything possible from food, beauty products, air, water, household cleaners, emotions, and thoughts. Finally, you must nourish your body with good, clean, whole food and subject your body to nutrient-dense foods, exercise, positive thoughts, actions, and activities.
Today in Part 3, we will look at nourishing your body with everything it needs to run perfectly.
In order to nourish your body in every way, you need to avoid toxic foods and indulge in nutrient-dense cleansing foods. Foods that don’t build your cells are dry or dead. They are animal-based or processed foods. These foods are high in sugar and laden with chemicals used to flavor, color, sweeten, or enhance. These are the foods in boxes and bags that are advertised most on television. Marketers love to target children for these foods too.
Nourishing foods build your body up and make you feel good. Nourishing foods are alive or as close to alive as possible. Nourishing foods are hydrating and pure, they are free of chemicals and are in a natural state or close to it. Nourishing oils are cold-pressed, non-chemically expelled oils such as olive, coconut, nut oils.
In order to nourish your body and systems, you need to decide that you will seek pure, whole foods whenever you can. You will not find these foods at fast food joints or at most restaurants. If you do eat at restaurants talk to the staff and find out what kinds of ingredients are used and how they are prepared.
Keep vegan snacks in your refrigerator such as homemade hummus, salsa, guacamole, fruit and vegetables salads. You will be tempted to eat whatever is most available, so keep healthy whole, pure foods available at all times and already prepared.
When you fix a plate of food, make sure that you build it by selecting the vegetables (all colors), beans and legumes, and fruits first. Add some whole grains if you want. Then add a small amount of animal product if you choose. Eating this way will guarantee that you will stay healthier and avoid chronic disease. If you are already sick or healing, consider eliminating all animal and processed foods completely.
Anything that touches your skin can be absorbed directly into your blood. This is why prescription drugs are administered often using patches. Make sure that anything that touches your skin is made from clean, pure, non-toxic, natural ingredients. This includes household cleaners, fragrances, makeup, soap, and hair products.
In order to nourish your mind and emotions, there are hundreds of things you can do. I’ll make some suggestions and you pick a few you want to try first.
Slow down, meditate or do some yoga. Detach from the everyday pressure you normally put on yourself and think about your priorities. Engage in the positivity that comes into your thoughts and ignore the negativity. Do what you need to do to improve your self-esteem. Get help for your addictions. Learn some humility. Stop getting involved in everyone else’s drama and let the world happen on its own. Stop judging other people and look at yourself. Love yourself and give your time and resources freely.
Enjoy your pets. Walk your dog. Take a nap. Call your mother and ask her how she is doing. Have lunch with a friend. Hold hands with your partner and take a walk together. Think about fun times you had when you were a child. Stop thinking and talking about politics and religion. Participate in your own community. Do some volunteer work. Make a list of nice things you can do for other people that you would enjoy. Whenever you have negative thoughts, do one of your items.
Work to fix old relationships that are strained. Make amends with people you have hurt. Is it really a big deal to admit you might have done something wrong or hurtful? Identify your own character defects and give them up too. Be who you want to be. It all starts in you. Let go of all of your expectations and your attachments to material things and outcomes.
Eating, touching, and thinking clean, natural, and pure things will make you healthier in every way. You can make a big difference by doing one thing at a time, one day at a time, and building your life from the inside out!
(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. Beth is helping people improve their lives through nutrition and lifestyle education, health coaching, and by helping others to learn to make informed choices. Beth continues to spread understanding of the connection between body, mind, and spirit and encourages all to discern the truth about food, consumer products, environment, and life choices. You can find Beth on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/HolisticHealthHotspot or email her at email@example.com)
This isn’t the first time we’ve come to this crossroad, you know. We’ve been here before. And each time we get to this place we swear that we’re never going to slide backward again. We make an oath that this time, we’re going to move forward. The evolutionary journey of humanity is not going to stop here, and reverse course, ever again.
And then — in the past, at least — it has done just that. Our forward motion has been stopped dead in its tracks, and we’ve taken the species right back hundreds, if not thousands, of years. On at least one occasion, we took it right back to its origins.
All of this has happened every time we have reached the stage in our development as a species of sentient beings where our technology, our science, our medicine, our very human genius, outstripped our human understanding of how to best use it. And so we destroyed much of our planet, and most of the inhabitants of it.
We are about to do it again. But do we have to do it again? Is there no other way for our species to evolve than for us to insist on using the Two-Steps-Forward/One-Step-Backward method?
People in the power centers in the North Korean capital of Pyongyang and the U.S. capital of Washington D.C. are about to answer that question. But not them and them alone. Others are now addressing, and will soon be answering, that question as well.
These others include the Earth’s political figures as the authors and thus the authorities of our governance, the captains of business and industry as the drivers of our economies, the Earth’s ecological experts as the protectors of our environment, the globe’s medical establishment and its scientists as the guardians of our health and the creators our potential, the planet’s educators as the producers of our future, the leaders of the world’s religions as the pronouncers and the validators of our beliefs, and individuals around the world as the determiners of our values.
So far, the people in these positions of influence have not done a very good job. Not one of the systems, institutions and devices they have put into place to create a better life for us all is producing this result. Our political systems clearly are not working. Our economic systems clearly are not working. Our ecological systems clearly are not working. Our health care systems clearly are not working. Our educational systems clearly are not working. Our social systems clearly are not working. Our spiritual systems clearly are not working.
Nothing our human society has created is producing the outcomes that were intended. It is worse than that. They are actually producing exactly the opposite.
Our political systems are producing too much disarray. Our economic systems are producing too much poverty. Our ecological systems are producing too much environmental degradation. Our health care systems are producing too much inequality of access to modern medicines and health care services. Our educational systems are producing too much incomprehension. Our social systems are producing too much disparity and injustice. And, saddest of all, our spiritual systems are producing far, far too much intolerance, anger, hatred, and violence.
What gives here?
Isn’t it time to ask, “Is it possible that there is something we don’t fully understand about God and about Life, the understanding of which would change everything?
“What’s going on with the human race that it cannot see, even as it looks right at itself? Where is our blind spot?”
Do we have to ignite another massive war? Do we have to blow ourselves to kingdom come and start the whole process of civilizing civilization all over again? What will it take for us to stop this endless, insane process?
Are you willing to join in working to bring this endless cycle to an end?
IN THE NEXT POST: Humanity’s Blind Spot, and what you can do to help heal it.
The wind of change is blowing on Italy. Following the Pope’s step down, on February 24, 2013, the Italian political elections took place with astonishing results.
The M5S or “5 star movement,” guided by the standing comedian Beppe Grillo, has unexpectedly become the first political force in the Italian Parliament, with 25.55% of the votes.
It is extraordinary that one person, a comedian, who has for more than 20 years brought to the attention of his audience the most incredible facts that were affecting people in Italy as well as in the rest of the world, is now leading the most powerful political movement in Italy. Millions of people have started to support the 5 Star Movement, guided by common sense and the desire to change, independently of any ideology or political affiliation. Internet, with all its social networks, and the very effective use of streaming TV, have been the simple, democratic and revolutionary tools used by them.
These are citizens who, out of generosity, have chosen to use some of their time and resources to give their contribution to the rest of the people in their country. In the last 5 years or so, Beppe Grillo and his Movement have provided independent and transparent information, which is much needed, given the fact that all of the media, including newspapers and TVs, are owned and manipulated by a few individuals and interest groups.
By creating a spontaneous movement for change, Grillo has inspired people to participate in the reconstruction of the country, by taking responsibility and giving a new sense of democracy and citizenship based on transparency and communication. At the moment, Beppe Grillo and the M5S are the most followed streaming TV on YouTube. They, like Obama in the U.S., are requesting that internet be made freely available to every citizen in Italy, as this is the main instrument of knowledge and information, and free right to information should be a birthright for everybody, like the right to have a house and a job, and a minimum income if temporarily out of job.
Unfortunately, all of these fundamental rights are not guaranteed for the majority of people in Italy. The Italian social and economic situation is very dramatic. Many families are struggling to get to the end of the month and small businesses are closing down every minute mostly because of heavy taxation, which has reached 70%. But rather than complaining and just playing the victim, M5S have taken action to start changing this situation, with small but significant steps.
For example, M5S representatives who have been elected in the regional parliament of Sicily have voluntarily cut their own salaries by 70%, creating a fund to sustain the small and medium-sized local businesses. The candidates who have been elected to the National Parliament less than 2 weeks ago will do the same, and there are 163 of them!
One of the main points of the M5S electoral program is to guarantee a minimum salary for everyone. People should not be left alone in this difficult moment, and because there is no money left in the government funds, the M5S is proposing to cut the pensions of those people who get up to 90 thousand euros a month. A little sacrifice is asked of those who have more. By fixing a ceiling of 4000 euros a month for pensions in the next 5 years, the remaining money can be given to those who need it most.
By reducing and cutting the costs of the Italian huge and useless bureaucracy, much needed funds can be made available to those who really need it. Rather than cutting education and health funds, a rationalisation of the current expenditure would create, according to the M5S, enough funds to alleviate the dismal poverty of those who have less. These are just few examples of the many proposals M5S is making to tackle the Italian economic crisis.
According to Beppe Grillo, if everyone will do his/her part in the next 5 years, change will occur faster and with the least effort. He is inviting the population to take responsibility and participate in any possible way, a bit like Obama did in his presidential speech in January 2009. One of the slogans of the M5S is: we are the State and everyone counts as One.
Everyone would agree that this is the true meaning of Politics and the State. Politics does not have to be complicated, in fact, it is very simple, only if there is the willingness to address and resolve the real problems of the majority of the population. It is another thing when the politicians are trying to defend the interests of a minority of the population: that’s when they start to write laws and rules that are impossible to follow, to create a jargon that is impossible to understand, and a cast that is difficult to remove. But this is no longer acceptable: humanity has grown up, change is already happening, and we are loving it!!
(Mariella holds a PhD in Agricultural Economics from the University of Modena Italy. She also is a Reiki Master and founded a Meditation Centre in her hometown in Matera, Italy. She is currently living in Brighton with her two children and her partner Guillermo. Guillermo has worked successfully in the IT & Electronics field covering from developing to marketing roles in Argentina Italy and Switzerland. He graduated from the Silva Life Method in 1994 and has been interested in healing and spirituality since then. He currently works in Brighton as a carer for people with learning disabilities.)
(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.”)
Has your life been changed by the message of Conversations With God? Do you wish there was some way you could share how the message worked, and helped you in your life, with others?
There is a way.
Neale Donald Walsch has written a remarkable book that takes the messages of CWG and overlays it on everyday situations and circumstances in life. The book — titled When Everything Changes, Change Everything — provides a complete technology for addressing life challenges with a remarkable combination of modern day psychology and contemporary spirituality.
This deeply insightful text is supported by a website staffed exclusively by volunteers. The website is called The Changing Change Network, because it has created a network of people around the world who are dedicated to being there for others in a spiritually supportive way. The site can be found at www.changingchange.net
The purpose of this helping outreach is to “change the way change changes you” when a person is experiencing a negative response to a major, unexpected, unwanted change in their life. The website fulfills a promise that Neale made in his book: You never have to go through traumatic change in your life alone.
He promised to create a site that would be staffed with volunteers who would answer, within 24 hours, any person posting a call for help regarding a sudden change in their life. (Go to www.changingchange.net to see what I’m talking about.)
The Spiritual Helper volunteers assist people in finding practical spiritual tools to use in times of extreme change. These volunteers know the material in Conversations with God and When Everything Changes, Change Everything intimately, and commit two days a month to being the first responder when a person posts a question about how to go through their dramatic change. The Helper also commits to being the “back up” for another Helper for two other days per month.
This is a wonderful opportunity to enter into a true spiritual ministry. And you don’t have to worry about “not knowing how to do this.” Once a month Neale holds a training call to answer questions you may have about CWG in general, about how its messages apply to the problems and challenges which people discuss on the site, and about ways that you might best respond and interact on the site. In addition, once a year Neale offers the Spiritual Helpers free on-site participation as a back-of-the-room observer at one of his spiritual renewal retreats, and works with the Spiritual Helpers in private sessions during the retreat, exploring in highly personal discussions everything he knows about the CWG messages and how to apply themto people in the group who are seeking spiritual growth.
So, I ask you: Do you feel called to help others, but just don’t know how? Do you know the Conversations with God material, realize its power, and wish to share it? Do you have a little extra time?
Perhaps you were attracted to CWG for a reason. Perhaps you are being given the opportunity to be a Spiritual Helper.
Interested? Go to www.changingchange.net and see if you can imagine yourself there as one of our Spiritual Helpers. You can even begin to offer gentle spiritual counsel before becoming an “official” member of the Spiritual Helper team. (Members of the general public often do.) Then, if you feel the impulse to offer your help more often, and on a regular basis that can be counted on, write to: firstname.lastname@example.org and offer your commitment to check into the site two days a month to see if anybody new has posted, and to respond within 24 hours if someone has.
It’s as simple — and as wonderful — as that. The Changing Change Network is a global network of people “being there” for other people. If you have been feeling the impulse to look for your spiritual ministry in the world, you may have just found it.
Let us know. And thanks for reading this.
The Changing Change Network
This morning God asked me,
“When did you stop singing?”
At first, I was angered.
Then, I let the question Be.
“Why,” said I,
“I believe it was when I began to follow
every thought that was given to me
by my parents,
and then by my peers,
and then by any passing stranger.
I believe it was the moment I began to choose
achievement over Alchemy
and competition over Compassion.
It was that morning I arose,
and put my feet into shoes
too tight for Freedom;
when I listened, instead of Music,
“I believe,” said I, “that I stopped singing
the moment I stopped hearing Birdsong
or laughed with the sounds of Laughter.”
“And when did you stop dancing?”said God.
“Or being enchanted by stories?
Or stop finding comfort in the sweet territory
“Why,” answered I, “It was, you see, when I forgot that
I am You.“
“When Did You Stop Singing?” em claire ©2012 www.emclairepoet.com
(Based on the quote by Gabrielle Roth in her book Maps to Ecstasy, with permission by Gabrielle Roth)
I see Neale, and others, talking about world peace, but I sure don’t see much peace around me these days. I hear them talking, talking, talking, but what am I supposed to do? Where are the leaders like Martin Luther King and Ghandi and Mandela for NOW, and for moving forward? Who is going to lead ME? I am confused as to what I can do!
Jason in Detroit
I think any rational person sometimes takes a look around at this world and feels hopeless. The energy does feel pretty overwhelming. But here’s what I believe. I believe that there may never be “leaders” in the same manner there were in the past. I think they had their place in space and time, and were necessary, because it wasn’t time for the next step…for ALL of us to be leaders.
We no longer require a specific leader to be the genesis of change. In fact, we no longer have to know just who was the first to promote and work for an idea, because now an idea whose time has come can spread across the world in seconds with no one having to know who first thought it.
It does mean that we all get to choose, instantly, whether or not we are going to “Be the change we wish to see.” Are we going to follow the example of those brave souls who were recognized as leaders, and allow them continue to lead us into our own power?
We can choose how we feel about it all. We can choose to give up and just let it all happen, or we can choose to do something about what we see. For me, even if I never “succeed” at changing the world, just the fact that I don’t give up gives my life purpose and meaning. I will know, at the very least, that I have exampled for my children, and grandchildren, what I feel the world should look like…and maybe THEY will be the ones who change things.
In any case, we could all, literally, because all of the negativity of this world, stay in bed, under the covers, and be depressed, or we could choose to talk to everyone we meet with a smile on our faces, engage them in conversation, and let all know that we are doing our best to live differently than the energy we feel around us. We could invite them to join us by simply living our lives joyously, and encouraging them to live their lives as joyously as possible as well!
And lead. By our own example and power.
And maybe you, or I, will be the genesis of the next great paradigm shift…and never have to know it.
We may be the first Domino. (Hey, it could happen!)
When a waitress or waiter asks me if they can do anything else for me, I always say, “Yes, you can give me peace!”, and then a conversation (short or long) ensues about how each of us must first create peace in ourselves, and how peace spreads from our own peacefulness. I actually had a really long conversation about just that when I went out to dinner yesterday! And I have the conversation in grocery stores and when standing in lines. As a matter of fact, if someone really wants to talk, the one question that really gets the conversation going comes from right here, The Global Conversation.
“How is it that 7 billion people, all claiming to want the same things…are not able to achieve them?” (By the way, have you read Neale’s book, “The Storm Before the Calm”?)
I believe that “talking, talking, talking” really is the answer, but it has to move off the page and into our personal being and radiate outward to our own corners of the world first.
So don’t be afraid to be confused. It is my opinion that being confused, being mad, or being afraid are all simply signals that we should look at things in a different way…because if the current way is making you confused/angry/afraid, it obviously isn’t really working for you! Consider, if you will, what might work for you. In what way might you be getting called to lead?
(Therese Wilson is a published poet, and is the administrator of the global website at www.ChangingChange.net, which offers spiritual assistance from a team of Spiritual Helpers responding to every post from readers within 24 hours or less, and offers insight, suggestions, and companionship during moments of unbidden, unexpected, unwelcome change on the journey of life. 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.)