“If you have come here to help me you are wasting your time, but if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.” -Lilla Watson
ABQ CSL mission statement:
Love In Action: Transforming Lives, Transforming Communities
We continue to be in the season of the new year as its celebrated across the globe with the Orthodox New Year, Chinese New Year, and the Buddhist celebration of the Mahayana New Year. The energy of “new” often points to needed change.
There is an ongoing debate in spiritual circles and teachings whether or not spirituality has anything to do with change. But to keep it 100, I have to tell you that I’m not interested in that debate…at all. I am interested in the call of our lives, mine and yours. I’m not interested in a spirituality of nothing..no thing. I am here because you are here and this One Life we are bound up in is demanding change, crying out for it.
Freedom from suffering, liberation from untruth..these are the promises of spiritual living. Liberation is the promise of transformation, the promise of our mission of Love In Action.
We can’t get free from suffering if we don’t liberate ourselves from the lies in our own minds. This liberation requires change, it requires the transformation of our own minds. The personal untruths we are burdened with that show up as false beliefs about our worthiness and value are often the root of our individual suffering.
But we can’t stop there on our quest for freedom and liberation. We must also liberate ourselves from the collective untruths that tell us who and what is valuable and worthy. The entanglement of these individual and collective untruths means that often the labor of liberation for the individual and the collective is one and the same.
We can no longer waste time and energy on debating what is spiritual and what isn’t. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Oneness demands that we integrate it all.
We must wrestle with our own mis-beliefs about our selves AND we must wrestle with the collective untruths entangled, informing, and sometimes even creating the false beliefs and untruths we hold about ourself, others, and life itself. We must unearth, and undo the impacts of injustices like white-supremacy, patriarchy, colonialism, toxic capitalism, and our collective history. We must be willing to look eyes wide open at our unique place and entanglement in these heinous systems. When we are liberating our self from the misbeliefs and untruths in our own minds we must understand that systemic untruths have seeped into our minds and beings and must be excavated and released just like any other ridiculousness we have come to believe. This labor is all spiritual. It is all relevant and it is all necessary when claiming and embodying the truth of who we are.
The Center's mission of Love and transformation and its promise is met through the tools and loving support we provide to do this sacred labor. We are blessed to never have to labor alone. We are blessed to be supported and to be support for others along the pathway. We are also deeply blessed to be part of an interspiritual community that draws on the most powerful wisdom, practices, tools and master teachers from philosophies and faith traditions around the globe.
On January 16, the Baha’i faith observes World Religion Day, a day that celebrates common themes for faiths across the world. The very same common themes found in the perennial wisdom we also teach and practice here at The Center.
Rabbi Rami Shapiro, The One River Foundation:
“Perennial Wisdom can be summarized in four points:
All life arises in and is an expression of the non-dual Infinite Life that is called by many names: Ultimate Reality, God, Tao. Mother, Allah, YHVH, Dharmakaya, Brahman, and Great Spirit among others.
You contain two ways of knowing the world: a greater knowing (called Atman, Soul, Self, Spirit, Mind, etc.) that intuitively knows each finite life as a unique manifestation of Infinite Life, and a lesser knowing (called self, ego, ahem, kibr, etc.) that mistakes uniqueness for separateness, and imagines itself apart from rather than a part of Infinite Life.
Awakening the greater Self and knowing the interconnectedness of all life in the singular Life carries with it a universal ethic calling the awakened to cultivate compassion and justice toward all beings.
Awakening your greater Self and living this ethic is the highest goal you can set for yourself.”
When we distill this wisdom down into one Spiritual principle we arrive at Oneness.
It is our mission at The Center to manifest this perennial wisdom as lived reality by being Love In Action and transforming our individual lives and the lives of the communities we belong to.
And as I spoke to last week it starts with our own lives, our own consciousness. It starts with the labor of Love that we must each participate in taking 100% responsibility for our own transformation and our conscious place within The One.
When Lilla Watson kept it 100 in her now famous words, she clearly pointed us to our responsibility in Oneness. Join me this week to work together taking 100% responsibility for our own transformation.
To get us started on the labor of transformation and our joint liberation I invite you to check in with yourself about your willingness. I find in my own life that before my transformation can occur I have to be willing to let it!
Here are a couple of questions adapted from the 15 Commitments of Conscious Leadership process to take into the quiet and sit with what rises in consciousness.
Are you willing to take 100% responsibility (not more or less than 100% responsibility) for your transformation?
Are you willing to stop blaming and criticizing others and yourself for how much you've transformed or not?
Leave your aha's, insights, struggles and questions in the comments below, I would love to know what is coming up for you and support you.
I love you so much!