A change ahead

This is an announcement that as of January 1, 2018, The Global Conversation internet platform will cease to function as it has in the past — and that, in the second quarter of the upcoming year, it will be closed down altogether, with its function supported by other CWG platforms now online.

This change is the result of our team refining our mission and our vision, as our digital presence has evolved to new levels of sophistication. That transformation has produced a change in my own personal priorities, allowing me to spend more time with more people online than this platform allows me the opportunity to do.

Presently — as one regular visitor here called to my attention in a recent post — a very small number of visitors come to this site. I find that my outreach efforts are not being utilized here in an energy-efficient way.

The purpose of The Global Conversation has been to create a place where people could discuss topics of the day as presented in headline articles revolving around the messages of Conversations with God, trade ideas back and forth, pose and respond to questions among themselves, and, in general, produce an ongoing conversation at the intersection of spiritual and temporal matters.

The site served that purpose, with a fair number of people participating, in its earlier years. In more recent times, participation has plummeted, to a place where now, on an active day, perhaps 12 or 13 people may come to the site.

In the meantime, a worldwide internet platform called CWG Connect now lists nearly 6,000 members, with the number growing daily. That is understandable, as the Connect site offers a highly sophisticated and vast array of resources — video, audio, and written — for persons wishing to delve deeply into topics that arise around the CWG messages.

The Global Conversation has essentially evolved into the Community Forum, which is part of The CWG Village at CWG Connect — and that is just one facet of a multi-level site that includes a wonderful list of written articles of interest, an Ask Neale column for people wanting to question me, specifically, about the meaning and interpretation of the messages in CWG, a daily excerpt from one of the most powerful texts in the CWG body of work, with a place for reader comments and interactions, a Weekly Reader focusing in-depth on a major element of spiritual interest, CWG Radio, with its archive of fascinating programs and interviews, regular contributions from CWG Voices (a group of messengers and mentors steeped in how to apply the material in everyday life), and many other resources, features, and opportunities for spiritual expansion.

As well, for people looking for global spiritual involvement that reaches into the business and social leadership community, the wonderful work of Humanity’s Team (www.HumanitysTeam.org) has grown into a stunning resource. And if it is spiritual activism one is looking for, there is www.EvolutionRevolution.net.

I contribute commentary on each of these platforms, as well as at my own Facebook page, which has close to half a million followers. Within that context, it may be understandable that my participation here at The Global Conversation, with its dozen or so regular visitors, might not be considered the highest and best use of my personal energy at the age of 74.

We will, therefore, be keeping the Comment Section of this platform open beginning January 1 for anyone wishing to continue their “chat room experience” here, and, as we move into the second quarter of the year, we will forward The Global Conversation link to www.CWGConnect.com, with its huge collection of resources, and its Community Forum in the CWG Village.

Several of the “regulars” visiting here have already joined in the ongoing conversations there, and I hope that all of you who have enjoyed visiting here will find it equally stimulating to join in the exchanges there.

Meanwhile, as we approach these changes, I send you my very best wishes for a happy Holiday Season! May God’s blessings flow to you and through you in the days and weeks ahead.

Please Note: The mission of The Global Conversation website is to generate an ongoing sharing of thoughts, ideas, and opinions at this internet location in an interchange that we hope will produce an ongoing and expanding conversation ultimately generating wider benefit for our world. For this reason, links that draw people away from this site will be removed from our Comments Section, a process which may delay publication of your post. If you wish to include in your Comment the point of view of someone other than yourself, please feel free to report those views in full (and even reprint them) here.
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  • Spiritual_Annie

    “The purpose of The Global Conversation has been to create a place where readers of the Conversations with God material could discuss topics of the day, trade ideas back and forth, pose and respond to questions among themselves, and, in general, produce an ongoing conversation at the intersection of spiritual and temporal matters.”

    If this has been the purpose of this site, then you are right to shut it down because it doesn’t meet that purpose. I’ve seen the purpose of this site as a place where all people are welcome at the table, not just the readers of the CWG materials. I’ve enjoyed this site as a place to reflect on where Spirituality may lay in the waves of current events addressed in the columns posted here, which almost always brought me to a place of hope in some fashion. I’ve seen this as a place where there has been the building of bonds between people of differing views where I could learn from those not like myself.

    If your measure of the success of this site is the number of daily visitors or the expenditure of your time towards that stated purpose, then I understand.

    Using my own measures, I have been seeing it as a success, and will miss it.

    Love and Blessings Always,

    • AKA Patrick

      Annie, you’re a gem. Hang in there, girl. Just remember, as Divine Being, you have value to the All, which means All of Us! “Each One Teach One!”

    • NealeDonaldWalsch

      @Spiritual_Annie:disqus :
      You’re right, Annie. I mis-wrote when I penned that line. I have corrected it in the copy above. Your “take”on this is the same as mine has been regarding the purpose of the site. All people are welcome here, of course, not just CWG readers, to trade ideas, reflect on spirituality and its place in our lives, etc.

      The fact is, however, as a practical matter, that probably 95% of the people who have come here learned of the site from reading a book in the CWG cosmology. The site did not attract what you could call “a ton of visitors” who happened to chance upon the site or who somehow learned of it from a source outside of the CWG universe. So I think that’s where I was coming from when I used the phrase “CWG readers” in my original writing of the copy above.

      You’ve also said, Annie: “If your measure of the success of this site is the number of daily visitors or the expenditure of your time towards that stated purpose, then I understand.” What I have been measuring is not “the success” of the site, in the sense of whether it produced “a place where there has been the building of bonds between people of differing views where one could learn from those not like oneself” (to parphrase you from above). What I have had to measure is outlined in the second part of your sentence, Annie: whether it is energy efficient for me to spend my extremely limited time on a site that has 12 visitors a day, versus a site that has nearly 6,000 members (www.CWGConnect.com) or a half million followers (my Facebook page).

      I am sure that the 12 people who visit here regularly “have been seeing it as a success,” or they would not have continued visiting here. And you’ve given me an idea. Maybe we should keep the site up as just that: a place where various people can interact with each other on a regular basis, producing the “building of bonds between people of differing views where a person could learn from those not like themselves.”

      This would not involve me, however, because as noble and worthy as that idea is, my own purpose in life is to assist people who wish to learn more about what I have broadly called The New Spirituality…and, specifically, the messages in the Conversations with God books (and particularly “Conversations with God-Book 4: Awaken the Species”)…so that those who align and resonate with those messages can join in assisting to arouse humanity from its long and deep slumber. So the site would be, basically, a conversation platform open to any topic. When I was involved, by writing the headline article upon which people commented, nearly 99% of the time the lead article was based on a message from Conversations with God. And the site at CWG Connect, as well as my Facebook page, serves, exceedingly well, the people who are interested in that. And yes, even those with differing or opposing points of view can and do comment there. So it strikes me that we don’t need two sites on the Internet doing essentially the same thing.

      • Spiritual_Annie


        Thank you for your kind reply. I’ll admit that it felt like there was a possibility that you misstated the purpose of this site, but felt it important to point out how I saw it differently than what you had written. I’m glad that it was a simple miswording.

        I can understand, on many levels, why it’s healthy to revision one’s purpose and see where improvements can be made. My past experiences with volunteering at various organizations is that they can become stagnant or cliquish if new ideas and new technologies and new people aren’t incorporated. I certainly don’t wish that for any of your endeavors to fulfill your own purpose in being a Messenger, or hindering what I see as important ideas in the CWG material being shared with as wide an audiance as possible.

        As you might know, I have been a member of CWG Connect since before it’s revamping (but it’s not yet a habit–I’m working on making it one), and I’m a member of both Humanity’s Team and Evolution Revolution (though I haven’t gotten back to being active since my homelessness ended for many reasons). I also follow you on both Facebook and Twitter, and subscribe to the CWG newsletter. Those are excellent resources, and they are all helping to get the CWG Message out.

        If this site is to remain open (which would be my wish), I would love to see columns continued to be published to give us fresh perspectives on how Spirituality fits into current events, but understand your time and energy is limited. Have you considered allowing for guest columnists from inside the CWG community, with someone well-versed in the CWG material ensuring your Message isn’t being misrepresented? Or the simple duplication of columns written by those on CWG Connect? Or occasionally another viewpoint on Spirituality (for example, I’d love to see mewabe/Raphael write some columns on Indigenous belief systems)? That might be a change that breathes new life into this site, rather than it being a drain on anyone’s energy or finances. I would volunteer, but I am (as I’m sure you’ve noticed) not always completely in alignment with CWG, and am still rebuilding my library with the many books I’ve lost and so don’t have all the material to reference. (I’m almost always willing to step in and take on anything I suggest, but don’t feel qualified for this particular mission.)

        Whatever your choice about this site, I want to say that I am very grateful for the time and energy that you have spent here as I have gained much over the years–insights into different parts of Who I Am, new understandings about Spirituality expressed in current world events and, yes, silly yet meaningful chattiness that brings bonding and much needed laughter in a chaotic world.

        Whatever it’s purpose, this site has changed me in important ways, and I thank you for that.

        Much Love and Many Blessings,

  • Kristen

    Annie, thank you for what you wrote below, and Neale for your response.
    As a non CwGer, I was on the old vile CwG Spirit Forge, set up by fans rather than Neale because the conversations were interesting before they turned crazy and it became one of the first troll havens, then came in here in 2012.
    The word conversation means people freely chatting as they would do face to face (with a few punches thrown in).
    I would never go into the full CwG websites, thats disrespectful, it would be similar to trolling when I’m not a fan and not necessarily like minded BUT the very name of this site is different…people conversing globally, and in many circumstances, teaching and helping eachother, a d has always been in line with the top header…the rebels in society who believe we can make a difference, and acknowledge our faults and that everyone is a part of it.
    As Annie said, Neale, this has probably actually been quite rare, where you may have CwGers, activists, Christians, Kabbalists and all sorts of people meeting and discussing things rationally and getting along when trolls arent trolling. Plus wealthy chatting with poorer people, healthy with the unwell, people from all races and sexual orientations across the world.
    Neale, I know its a small site based on contributors or visitors, and agree your time is better utilised for what YOU and no one else, wants BUT from what you and many would love to achieve with world peace, not noticing differences, all having understanding and some form of faith or beliefs THEN THIS HAS BEEN A HUGE SUCCESS, this little site with 12 or 13 visitors a day has achieved something near impossible….we accept differences and learn about then rather than shutting down. A huge CwG message.
    Perhaps we just see it differently, and yes as a chat room sometimes (the guiltiest!), but thats the majic behind the internet and life..you used the words Global Conversation, and thats what you got via the Law of Attraction. Perhaps for what you may have preferred, CwG Conversation may have been a better site name.
    I think your idea as more of a chat room type site is a good idea if someone is prepared to take it over, I suggested Marko on the last thread.
    Anyway Happy Christmukkah everyone, Summer here, Im in Heaven for a few months.
    Take care and be safe,
    PS my annual Christmas Song for this year is an oldie, Merry Christmas, The War Is Is Over….Lennon.

    • Spiritual_Annie


      I’ve replied to Neale below, and have suggested guest columnists or duplication of columns from CWG Connect because there are those, like you and mewabe’s ghost, who wouldn’t feel comfortable at what’s a “CWG site,” and so that it’s more than just a chat room. We’ll see what happens–that’s Neale’s decision to make and I will, of course, respect whatever he chooses.

      I hope you know I consider you one of the treasures here, always coming from your heart and speaking your mind (even when it comes to tutus and WalMart weddings). You’ve also been personally supportive and caring towards me, and I appreciate that more than you probably realize. As a someone with disabilities, it’s difficult to meet people “in real life” because it’s just simply difficult for me to physically go anywhere. Most of the friends I have, I have met online first before moving on to exchanging emails or phone numbers. I consider you to be one of those friends, even though we don’t always say those things out loud here. (Hah, take that!)

      Love and Blessings Always,

      • Kristen

        Hi Annie……thank you, thats really sweet
        Human Beings..Being Human, what really makes the world spin, scientists know nothing!
        Heres a funny Christmas story for you. I went to Kmart with a friend last night, or actually our lives are so lame we were actually going down the road for a frappe at McCafe, but Ill pretend kmart was the plan if that sounds better!.
        Shes nutty like me unfortunately and her 13 year old twin girls were with us. In the underwear section we ‘stumbled’ upon a red bra, size 22f. I missed the boob queue somehow, so have to get the smallest possible, and thats on a good day! We were so rude we couldnt stop laughing and I got her twins to stand together with one boob cup over their heads like a hat, there was still lots of room, then did it up under their chins like 1950s bathing caps. Thats now her family Christmas photo and was insanely hilarious, hopefully you can visualise it. We then yelled to each other from different departments, she yelled to her daughters that I needed ‘personal sanitary items’, she stood stalking people literally to get another basket, we bought all the Maltesers so no one could have any, had to look at every tshirt then n7cely fold them all again and were rather disruptive. But you know what…no staff batted an eye…even when I put on a nightie with tassles like Burlesque….what the heck do you need to do in Kmart or Walmart to get kicked out? We even yelled to each other saying we needed to film skits for our non existant youtube channel, called ‘when single mums go nuts’ they didnt care! Other than shoppers believing us and saying theyd watch it. Maybe thats the American Christmas shopping experience…no rules in American stores, you can do what you want! The things we do for Christmas entertainment!

        Work is nuts which is good, so you and Biscuit have a great Christmas, may Santa surprise you with a little something, keep your eye out for Christmas majic, its the best!
        Big hug for you both, and again, thank you for your sweet writings. I hope the Ghost doesnt catch nice fever!

        • Spiritual_Annie

          You went to a KMart in mid-December?!?? You are more brave than I realized. 😉

          As someone who sought a breast reduction years ago because of degenerating disks, I can fully visualize a size F cup, although a 22″ ribcage is difficult to imagine. Last I was able to wear one, I was a 46DD (or in some places an E). Medicare wouldn’t cover the cost unless I went down to a training bra, so I still have them (though now I can fling them over my shoulders–a much underrated talent).

          Your story reminds me of the kinds of things my sister and I used to do. She was more often the instigator. She was one for winking at me and her two kids while in the middle of a store, then do something like grab her son by the collar and say in a loud voice, “Boy, if you don’t settle down, I’m gonna break your kneecaps!” Of course, that was decades ago. She was reported once, and we had to explain to Security at WalMart that she didn’t need to be held for the police. Fortunately, her kids were believed. (She would never do this in today’s climate. Her kids would be snatched and handed over to become more foster children.) Anywhere in public was a risk. Christie was like that, too. Always one for a good laugh and a practical joke, especially if there was anything the least bit raunchy about it.

          One of my favorite holiday stories is from when I was in my mid-20’s. I’d moved back to the midwest from California, and was staying with my little brother, his wife and their new baby until I could find a job and a place of my own. I caused much more friction than I think anyone expected, mostly by being kind. I needed a break, so took the train from Chicago to St. Louis for Christmas to visit that same sister. She knew I was getting increasingly stressed. I got a HUGE hug when she picked me up at the station, and I started crying. She grabbed my bag and we walked out to her car. There, peering out the back of the hatchback and then squealing when we were spotted, were my niece and nephew in their Christmas PJ’s and little Santa hats, who I’d not expected to see until morning as my train came in way past their bedtimes. One was holding a container of Chex Snax Mix, the other a container of Mama’s eggnog–both long-standing traditions in our family. Mary started the car and the radio was on really loud, playing Christmas music. We sang and laughed all the way back to her house, about an hour’s drive.

          Christmas majic is indeed powerful. It lifts spirits and heals wounds. Biscuit and I will be spending it here, rather quietly. My traditions have become simplified but more meaningful over the years. Growing up as one of seven, the holidays were big and loud and complicated. I play a little music, light some candles, and we’ll share a meal. Biscuit’s present is already bought. And mine is half-bought.

          You’re welcome, for the sweetness. I doubt it’s catching. If it is, it will probably wear off with a New Year’s Day hangover. You have a wonderful holiday yourself!

          Love and Blessings Always,

          • Kristen

            Hi ya,
            Cute Christmas story! I have just one sister, thank God. We never did big Christmasses, its not big here, its Summer and the start of Summer hols, the country basically shuts down for month and everyone heads to beaches. On Christmas day we just open presents, eat far too much then everyone disappears to friends places to drink and have a bbq later or to the beach. New Years Eve is the huge thing here, a big party for 4 million with all beaches full and cities all have heaps of free stuff on. If Im home, like last year when my neighbour and I came home before midnight, my house is on a hill 5km from the cbd so there is amazing fireworks everywhere especially the Harbour Bridge and Sky Tower. Last year was actually fun, we headed to a CBD beach Mission Bay, had Starbucks and burgers and people watched all night with a band playing on the reserve. This year Im heading south to see my 96 year old nana and Dad.

            Dont panic, kmart was at 8pm! They do licensed retro tshirts so always on the Santa list, and sell different edible treats to everywhere else as they come over from Australia! Since we are 15 hours ahead of you our Santa is from Antartica and he often shops at Kmart, he leaves the price tags on things, the joke here!
            When I hit 40 I decided a lifetime of lack of bust turns out to be a blessing, not enough to head south or do those flinging party tricks! Im skinny, a Us size 2. But yip, those party tricks are very underrated, people dont realise they take at least 40 years to acheive those talents! If you ever make it to a Walmart, Mewabes Ghosts fav shop, tutus could possibly make great boobtubes! Although amongst the treasures at Kmart we did find red baywatch bathing suits….a guarantee to unflatter anyone. Bet Walmart has them too, they might be the next highlight on People of Walmart (thats where the joke started btw. Mewabe told me to look at that online to see Americans at their finest, I nearly died).
            Im having a blessed Christmas this year, last year was a dud, work was quieter so no Christmas bonus and I got sick so 3 days in bed from Christmas Eve. I went to Sister Act stage show last week, and last night my sons girlfriend won a friend and I Gold tickets to Paul McCartney concert tonight. We were still ummming and ahhhhing due to cost. Turns out not enough expensive seats sold so the promoter had a comp and ended up giving all entrants tickets so empty seats dont look lame when its filmed. VERY EXCITED, saw him in ’93 at the same venue. I love concerts especially outdoors in Summer. Im still sulking my parents didnt take me to NY when I was 6 to take me to Woodstock! Child abuse. Maybe when God makes Mateias time machine I can use it and go to Woodstock. You and Biscuit can come too, youll be a teenager again and dancing in your tutu bikini for 3 days! My next Walmart husband can pick it up for you, and probably pick you up off the ground several times too!
            Take care Annie.

          • Kristen

            I think everyone else has died except us!

  • Stephen mills

    Thought I would submit a inspirational quote from the book Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda.

  • I just checked the NDW Facebook page. People do make comments, but there is no discussion, like we’ve had here. At least from what I see that was recently posted.

    Plus, most of the posts are Facebook short. That’s not necessarily bad, but usually, nothing much in depth. Like here.

    My suggestion, would be for the people here to go to the Facebook page and see if we could add some stimulation, even if just the few of us here, could spark more with others.
    Just a suggestion.

    I always liked that people here could go more in depth with there responses, a rare thing on Facebook.

    As for the CwG connect, I don’t see a lot of back and forth discussion. So I’m not sure where there is a platform for the kind of discussions we have here. This was designed just for that, spirited in depth discussions. So it is what it is. I’m glad to have been a participant and will certainly miss it, but understand the division of energy goes to the source it’s best served.

    I’ve always been astounded at the millions of CwG readers, followers and how we can’t even get a good 25-30 people to enjoy this. Sorry, but it puzzles me quiet frankly, an enigma for sure.

    So I’ll leave this post with the most succinct CwG message I’ve gotten from all my years of study etc. It’s simply “Beingness” What are we being moment to moment? What would we like to be and experience most or all of our lives? Work and play toward that. Be it peace, love, compassion, wisdom, joy etc. Our choice our creation.

    As for this platform, it will be like fading watercolors memories, that occasional eavesdrop on my soul.


  • Patrick Gannon

    Neale, thank you for having provided the platform, and subject matter to discuss. As a businessman myself, I understand the need to use limited resources to their best advantage, and time is certainly one of those limited resources.

    My thanks to those few who put serious thought into their discussions with me over the years.

    I guess you got your Kumbaya site back!

    Au revoir.

  • Stephen mills

    Merry Christmas everyone ,may all your wishes come true in 2018 and beyond .

    Peace to humankind and may we awaken to our highest ideas of ourselves .

  • NealeDonaldWalsch

    It’s been a tumultuous year, for sure. But all of the events of 2017, at home and in other lands, have served humanity in its awakening process. We are now searching, as a culture, more earnestly than ever before, to find a way to create a global community where our differences do not have to create divisions, our contrasts do not have to generate conflicts, and the variations in our beliefs do not have to produce violence in our lives.

    We are beginning to earnestly seek to really create “peace on Earth, and goodwill to men, women, and children everywhere.”

    The message at the heart of all the world’s great religions is beginning to be separated from each religion’s specific dogma, and is being reduced to its simplest form — inviting humanity to address at last the simplest question: Can we all just find a way to love each other?

    The answer is, yes. We can find a way to love each other. We can find a way to share with each other that demonstrates our love. And we can find a way to create equality with each other, regardless of the color of our skin, our gender, or our sexual orientation.

    We can find a way to be kind to each other, and tolerant of each other, regardless of differences in our political or spiritual beliefs.

    We are capable — as a species, and as individuals — to love without condition. This is what the man whose birth we celebrate tonight showed us.

    The man named Jesus . . . was graced to live in such a way that the possibility of Divinity expressing through humanity can never again be denied.

    The message of this night is that we are all given that grace. We are all imbued with the ability to demonstrate Divinity through our Humanity. Jesus devoted his life to showing us that possibility, but he is not the only one to have done so.

    Others, both before and after him . . . others, both male and female . . . others, both dark skinned and light skinned, Eastern and Western, known and unknown . . .have likewise used their lives to show us all our true identity . . .

    . . . by demonstrating TO us all our highest possibility.

    Not everyone has done it at the same level of perfection, but many have nonetheless shown us a magnificent aspect of being human.

    Mother Teresa showed us such an aspect, creating with the power of her love a worldwide movement offering a multitude of free services to the poorest of the poor. Nelson Mandela showed us such an aspect, forgiving those who jailed him for 27 years, stopping a nation from falling into tumult, and bringing the invitation of reconciliation to our wider wounded world. And there have been others. Many others. People who have shown us that being Divine while being Human is, indeed, possible.

    Yes many — many, other than Jesus — have demonstrated Divinity through their Humanity. So let’s use this time of year to renew our clarity: Divinity can be expressed by all of us — and it does not have to involve what we call world-impacting events. In fact, Divinity often is best expressed in the smallest of ways . . .

    . . . in the thoughts we think, in the things we say, in the choices we make, in the actions we take every hour of every day.

    Each of us brings Divinity to Humanity through the simple device of how we are being with each other. Our entire species evolves one kindness at a time. Thus, everything we DO is a “world impacting event.”

    Now, the wonder of this time of year . . . the wonder of Christmas . . . is that is “brings on” just such kindness — just such evidence of our ability to express Divinity as Humanity. THAT’S what makes this night, and the celebration of this time of year, so magical!

    Christmas seems to “bring on” a change in how people ARE with each other. A change in the energy of Life Itself. You can actually feel it in the air.

    It’s so common an experience that there are even song lyrics that describe this . . . “City sidewalks, busy sidewalks, dressed in holiday style…in the air there’s a feeling of Christmas. Children laughing, people passing, meeting smile after smile. And on every street corner you’ll hear: Silver bells, silver bells…it’s Christmas time in the city!”

    That feeling is not something we’re making up. It’s not our imagination. You can feel Christmas in the air. We call that feeling Love. And it’s what makes this time of year not only “magical,” but important. Because at this time of year we are reminded of who we are at our basis . . . and that reminder returns us to ourselves.

    To our TRUE selves.

    Who we are at the core of ourselves is, of course, LOVE.

    I know that may sound a bit simplistic . . . maybe even a little — what’s a word…? — “syrup-y” — but Love IS our basic component. We are all indescribably and incomprehensively loved by God — and that love is the stuff which fills our hearts and our souls, creating the foundation of our being.

    Christmas reminds us of that, allowing us— giving us permission — to express the feeling easily. We tell perfect strangers that we hope they have a wonderful holiday.

    We sit down with loved ones and break bread together — again — the way we used to.

    Family again.

    We share gifts with each other, and it doesn’t even matter what they are, for it is in the giving of them and in the receiving of them — whatever they are — that our love for each other is announced and declared, demonstrated and embraced, once more.

    Now the trick after tomorrow is going to be to keep it flowing; to keep it “in the air.”

    The question is: How can we do that? Is it even possible?

    I’ve been told that, Yes, it is. We simply have to decide to.

    M. Scott Peck wrote something remarkable in his book, The Road Less Traveled. He said, “Love is not a reaction, it’s a decision.”

    Can that be true? What if love is not my response to something that you are doing, but my choice regarding what I am doing?

    What if true love is not “predicated” on how you are being with me, but on how I am being with you — regardless of how you are being with me?

    Golly, wouldn’t THAT be a fascinating thing . . .

    The question I’ve been looking really closely at this Christmas season is this: Is it possible for human beings to just BE loving?

    Is it possible for people to simply decide to set aside their differences, get past their “bad” moments with one another, and just “BE” a certain way?

    My memory tells me that yes, not only is it possible, it can happen with a simple decision. Let me tell you a story from my childhood . . .

    I lived in a home filled with raised voices and lots of bickering and arguing between my parents. Now and then there were even down and dirty, drag out fights. I mean, words that hurt, doors that slammed, and even a not kind gesture or two.

    Once, my mom plopped a pile of mashed potatoes on my Dad’s head at the dinner table. Once, my Dad tore up, in a fit of anger, a fancy dress that he had purchased for my Mom.

    Mom and Dad loved each other fiercely. And I think that adjective is not misplaced. So we learned to live — my brother and I — in a household that was forever on edge, always on the brink of some kind of explosion . . .

    . . . except at Christmas time.

    Every year, at Christmas, things seemed to inexplicably settle down.

    Now, as an adult, I am sure that Mom and Dad just decided: “We’re not going to ruin Christmas by arguing and fighting and throwing things around the house. We’re just NOT.”

    And you could see this decision WORK. To this day I can recall, as tensions would begin to mount, and just before you could expect my father to raise his voice, Mom would say . . . “Alex, it’s Christmas.” And Dad would just blink, and — just like that — he’d shift his energy and say nothing.

    It worked in reverse as well. If it looked as if Mom was just about ready to let someone have it — not just my Dad, but even one of us boys — my Dad would say, “Okay, okay….c’mon. It’s Christmas.” And the air would clear, as if by magic.

    This would go on from after Thanksgiving until just after New Year’s. Then, things would get back to normal. The household “truce” was over.

    But I had actual PROOF in my own home that Peace on Earth, goodwill to men…and women…is a CHOICE.

    That childhood experience left me with a burning question. I asked my Dad this question myself one year when I was around nine . It was the day that the Christmas tree was taken down and dragged out of the house.

    That was always a sad day for me, because, you see, I loved Christmas. I was a very sensitive child, and I loved everything about this time of year…the Christmas tree, the sparkling lights, and the wonderful feeling in the air. Even as I love it today.

    But now it was that time again, that sad day when the tree was taken down, and Dad was carrying it through the house and out the back door to the yard, for its cold, cold wait to be taken away and forgotten.

    And this particular year I was affected even more than usual. I don’t know why, I just was. And so I asked my Father on his way through the kitchen, tinsel falling off the tree behind him, a child’s innocent question:

    “Dad…how come, when the tree leaves the house, all the love goes with it?”

    My Father stopped in his tracks, looked at me with an expression I never forgot, then said — as quietly as I ever heard him speak:

    “I don’t know, Son . . . I don’t know.”

    I understand now that all my parents had to do to keep the love in the air was to make the same decision every day that they made when the Christmas tree went up.

    So today I am inviting myself — and each of us — to embrace “the feeling of Christmas” . . . and then to decide inside that this Christmas — Christmas 2017 — is going to last all through next year.

    And all through our lives.

    There will be times, of course…there may be moments here and there…when this might not happen, I know. We’re all human, and we need to be careful not to hold ourselves to super-human standards. But we CAN make a decision that all CAN be “calm,” and all CAN be “bright” more of the time.

    Much more of the time…if we make a decision to allow the feeling of Christmas to be “in the air”…

    Every. Single. Day.

    And not leave the house when the tree leaves the house.

    • AKA Patrick

      We already KNOW how to love one another. Like with knowing who and what we are, we have gone amnesiac and forgotten these most important aspects of our Divine Being. We need to remember.

    • Jean_Sillard

      Thanks Neale for sharing this story. As an adult, i didn’t like Christmas as i considered to be mostly a commercial celebration, but i this year i was listening to Enya song ‘the spirit of Christmas’ and i remembered how it was when i was a child. To celebrate Christmas we have to find back our child’s soul. As i a child i was marveling at simple things in my daily life. I was very often in a state of wonder.
      As i an adult i became cynical. It’s no wonder Jesus told us : “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”