The other day, someone asked me what I thought the essential purpose of my work was. I’ve not thought about that question for awhile, so I took a bit of time to reflect on it before answering.
My first few thoughts sounded very spiritually impressive:
- “To unleash the human potential”
- “To wake people up to their divine nature”
- “To raise the consciousness of the planet”
My next round of inner answers were filled with ego, insecurity, and self-loathing:
- “To make lots of money”
- “To become famous”
- “To justify my existence on the planet”
But when I got a bit quieter, a very clean, clear, and honest answer emerged:
“My own life sucked for a long time, and what I’ve learned about who we really are and where our experience comes from has meant that I get to live in nicer feelings more of the time and have a hell of a lot more fun than I ever thought possible.”
But when I first got to read my one-time apprentice turned first-time author Maggie Gilewicz‘s new book, I realized that the book’s title was an equally powerful articulation of the purpose of my own work:
“To help people make sure that their life doesn’t suck.”
When I first met Maggie Gilewicz, I was impressed. She was a whirlwind of energy, pursuing her doctorate with a fierce desire to learn and an equally fierce commitment to being of service others. The only problem, as I came to see quite quickly, was that her life kind of sucked. Fortunately, as you will learn in this wonderful book, our experience of life can change in a single moment.
Let’s face it – we all have shit going on in our lives from time to time. Our finances get out of control, the people we work for make ridiculous demands, the people closest to us let us down, and the whole world seems to have gone temporarily insane.
Perhaps worst of all, we feel like we are letting ourselves and others down with our inability to do what we know at our best is the best way forward. We get caught up in low moods and feel unable to break free. Our own thoughts and feelings turn dark, and the world around us seems to darken in response.
But no matter how hopeless and ‘suckish’ things may seem, there is a quiet light waiting for us in the noise of the darkness. Our experience is not made up of our circumstances. We live in the feeling of what Maggie calls our THOUGHT-created realities, not the feeling of the outside world.
The American physicist David Bohm pointed to the nature of our personal realities when he wrote “THOUGHT creates our world and then says ‘I didn’t do it.’”
The Scottish mystic Syd Banks pointed to the same thing when he wrote “THOUGHT is not reality, yet it is through THOUGHT that our realities are created.”
In my own work, I often liken this power of THOUGHT to play dough. Whether we use it to create animals or aliens, random shapes or barbershops filled with customers, the common element in each and every form is the raw clay from which it is made. And when we start to see that no matter how long we’ve been making the same shapes we can always start over and make something new, life gets considerably less scary and considerably more fun.
You won’t find any exhortations in this book to “be more disciplined” or “cultivate a positive mental attitude”. There are no techniques to practice and no practices you need to incorporate into what may already at times seem like an overly busy life.
This is because when you wake up to the fact of THOUGHT, you wake up to the infinite creative potential inside you. Whether you laugh with joy at the freedom you discover or cry with relief at the realization that you are (and always have been) OK, your life will never be the same again.
I was fortunate to be there the moment that Maggie had her ‘aha’ moment and woke up to her deeper nature – the power and possibility that is alive at the heart of all of us. And my fondest hope for you as you read this wonderful book is that you have an awakening of your own along the way.
In one of my early books, I wrote about it like this:
“Imagine you are dreaming the most incredibly vivid dream of your life”, began the teacher. “In the dream, you seem to be some sort of adventurer, and each adventure brings with it new challenges and creative solutions. You experience many things – some wonderful and some not so wonderful.
You soon realize that in your dream, anything is possible. On one of your adventures, you encounter a very high wall, so you imagine yourself a rope and climb to the top. In another, you are falling off a cliff, but before you reach the ground, you begin to fly.
Eventually, you begin to look forward to each new adventure – until one time, for no apparent reason, everything seems to go wrong,
It is dark, so dark that you cannot see your hand before your face. Even before you can hear or see anything, you sense danger. Strange and uncomfortable sounds begin crawling out from the depths of your imagination and seem to be coming closer to you.
Cautiously, you strike a match. Everywhere you look, you’re surrounded by the most hideous creatures you’ve ever seen.
You try to run, but your legs won’t move; you open your mouth to scream, but no sound comes out. Everything you’ve learned up to this point seems to have abandoned you, and a horrific death seems imminent.
What would you do?”
The student was lost in thought for many moments, and the teacher could see a range of fearful emotions play across her face as she lived the scenario fully in her mind. Suddenly and without warning, she opened her eyes and began to laugh.
“I know what I would do,” the student said. “I would wake up!”
Think of this book as a wake-up call from a dear friend. The life you change just might be your own…
With all my love,