Tag: peace

another-wayToday I will speak of possibility — the possibility of what can be.

Our news is filled with conflict. Political battles. War. Terrorist attacks. Senseless violence. Predatory economics. Dogmatic doctrines that promote separation.

That conflict is the result of business as usual in our world, built upon a model for human relations that doesn’t serve us very well. At least, it doesn’t serve well the half who find themselves on the losing side.

Yet our affairs are based on a winner-take-all system where the victor not only gets the spoils, but also the chance to set the rules of engagement for future battles.

And this is the dualistic world we have known, where extremes are pitted against each other in a never-ending war for supremacy, and when that is not possible, at least for an uneasy co-existence.

There is another way, one based on the love and light we Lightbearers are bringing to our lives and sharing with the world around us. But as powerful as love and light are, they will never have the impact we want them to have until we shift into places where they can be more effective than simply casting our seed on fallow ground, left to picking up the pieces when the fighting stops.

Those conflicts we so despise are opportunities to find another way. But when we find ourselves pulled into the fray by our support for one extreme or the other, we’re unable to make that shift. Instead, we get locked into views that cause us to not only perpetuate the war, but deny us the chance to effect a lasting peace that serves all.

As Lightbearers, we can set an example for others to follow. But for us to seize this possibility, we cannot continue to take part in the conflicts that the world would drag us into.

This doesn’t mean ignoring what’s going on or separating ourselves from those who are still engage. Rather, it is to embody peace in all we say, think and do.

How?

The first step is to acknowledge that if a conflict touches a nerve in us, it does so because BOTH sides of the battle are going on within us. And when we pick a side, we’re denying that part of us that supports the other, exacerbating an inner conflict that will inevitably erupt somewhere else down the road.

Instead, we must find a way to integrate the extremes that are already within us, acknowledging their presence and finding the value that each offers us (or else we wouldn’t have it there). Then, recognizing them not as evils to be banished but necessary parts of us that we must honor and use for our own expansion, we can set about the task of bringing balance to those energies within us.

Like all of life, we can choose how we will meet those conflicts. We can choose if we will take sides, and whether we will allow the turmoil of the outer world to upset our inner one. We can, most of all, choose how we will experience, process and engage the energies that try to drag us into the fray.

Then, once we have found our peace, we can help those in our lives see that they don’t have to take sides either. We can let them see what we have done, and how it is allowing us to move forward without this conflict. And we can let them bathe in our peace until they can create it in themselves as well.

This possibility is behind my vision for the Alliance. It is not to grow another group just to say we belong to something else, propping up our egos with a false sense of contribution simply because our names are attached to what we think is a good cause.

It is, instead, meant to be a living, growing community — a family, if you will — of those living by the light and accepting the responsibility that comes with the great power it infuses into us.

Within this community Lightbearers can come together, not only to support each other, but to embody the very principles they want our world to reflect. Together, we can build a prototype for a deep and lasting peace that others can see and build upon.

How that community develops I leave to you. But then, whether it does is not up to me. I’m just here to share the vision and perspectives I’ve been given, and hopefully empower you to overcome the things that hold you back.

Instead, what this Alliance becomes is up to you and you alone, in conjunction with your fellow Lightbearers. I will do my part, but all of you must do yours. And that part is far more than simply being another name on our growing list of members.

If you stand for peace, if you stand for community, if you stand for the possibility that love and light can make this world a better place, then it is up to YOU to find a way to build this group into something real, something tangible that will truly make all proud to say, “I’m a Lightbearer. And if you let me, I will show you what I’ve found.”

God bless you indeed. I am

john

Additional reading:

Share

finding peace on a sunny daySo you say you want peace? Then what are you willing to do to get it?

Everywhere I turn I hear somebody talking about peace. World peace. Inner peace. Peace prizes. Apparently it has some value if so many people want it.

But when I look around, or turn on the TV, peace is the last thing I see. People hurting people is the order of the day. Everyone’s fighting to get what they want, or to keep others from having it. And whether it manifests as oppression, control, war, terrorism, violence, lawsuits, corporate excess, corruption, political disputes, or simply people not being very nice to each other in their daily affairs, peace doesn’t seem very high on our list of priorities.

If peace is so valuable and we want it as much as we say we do, why don’t we put it at the top of our lists?

Why isn’t peace the first thing we commit ourselves to every morning, and the last reminder we give ourselves before we go to bed?

Do we really expect it to just show up on its own, materializing in our reality simply by wanting it and thinking good thoughts? I doubt it.

 

Setting Peace as a Priority

If we want peace, then we have to CREATE IT! Like anything else we want in our lives, we’ve got to want it enough to go get it, and do what it takes to have it.

Now, this whole idea of “wanting” something — the process of forming a desire and attaching it to an object or condition we want to experience (or not, in the case of the things we fear) — plants a seed that often grows into conflict when our desires clash with those of others’. But that’s a big topic, so let’s set that aside for a moment.

Creating peace is going to require a whole new way of living than the ways we’ve been using to create the things that steal our peace. It just might mean letting go of some of what we want. Or think. Or believe. Especially when it sets the stage for conflict with others.

It especially will mean changing how we see and engage the energies in our lives, and that flow to us from others or the world around us. For if we want peace, it’s very hard to justify taking sides in battles that perpetuate conflict and steal our peace.

I won’t pretend it’s going to be easy to change our ways. But to have peace, we have to pay the price. And that price is rooting out the seeds of conflict within us and all aspects of our affairs, both individual and collective. Most of all, it demands that we change how we do business, solve our problems, and treat each other along the way.

 

It’s up to you

If you say you want peace and you’re not willing to do these things, then how do you expect to have it? Sure, there is a source of peace inside you can connect to. But if you turn around and fall into the same old patterns of engaging those outer energies and interests, you aren’t doing a very good job of walking your talk.

Peace is your responsibility. Wanting it isn’t enough. Intending it is enough, either. You have to do whatever it take to have it. Not by making war upon the world around you to impose your will, but by making peace so that all can have what you want for yourself.

Remember, we’re all in this together. If you don’t find a way to bring peace to others, how do you expect to keep yours if they keep bringing you upset, turmoil and conflict?

Don’t expect to just make a choice and have instantaneous peace. There are conditions lurking deep within each of us, not to mention our societies and cultures, that condition us to actions and response that are less than peaceful. But just because we fall today doesn’t mean we shouldn’t pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and get back on that horse to ride toward the peace that’s waiting on the horizon.

In the end, it’s up to you. And me. And every one of us. It’s a choice we’ll have to make for ourselves, in this moment and every one to come.

All I can suggest is that if you want peace in your time, do what you can to create peace today. In you. In your world. In everyone around you.

Only then will you have a chance to really be at peace.

God bless you indeed.

 

Related reading:

Share

I can’t give you peace. No one can. Not Buddha. Not Mohammed. Not even Jesus. Their godliness may have made them deserving vessels into which we deposited our faith and belief in something more than the struggle of the moment, from which we can draw hope, strength and direction through life’s storms. But they could…

Share

american-flag3_optI’m beginning to wonder. Because with the state of our system and the political affairs that set its course, it sure doesn’t seem that way.

Woody Guthrie wrote in his famous song, This Land is Your Land, “This land was made for you and me.” But the more I look at the way things are, the more it looks like he was wrong. At least, as far as it applies to people like me.

The Democratic National Convention wraps up tonight; the Republicans finished theirs last week. And despite all the promises and bluster coming from both, to me it don’t mean a thing.

Or more accurately, it’s all just

Blah. Blah. Blah.

Because neither side gives a damn about what I think. And especially what I want for myself or my country. Let me explain why.

* * * * *

A word about my roots

I was born into a family of West Virginia Democrats. And frankly, coming from coal country and the battles between Big Coal and the United Mine Workers, I can understand why.

The coal companies paid a pittance for life-threatening, back-breaking work, and treated their people like dirt — if not worse. And much of that was in scrip, forced to use company stores that gouged exhorbitant prices for food, clothes and other necessities.

They even built coal towns, and housing for the miners — housing that was used to hold over their heads in ways like, “You don’t like what you’re paid? Then get out. Now!”

Trust me, these homes weren’t mansions; in fact, most were hardly more than three or four room shacks with coal littering the “yards” around them. Yet still I remember visiting cousins who ran barefoot through them, blissfully oblivious to the thick black soot, cuts and ankle turns that inevitably resulted.

These coal companies represented the interests of wealthy investors who invaded the mountains to plunder its God-given natural resources. Sure, those resources are essential for maintaining the viability of U.S. industry as well as fueling our ravenous demand for energy. But it’s HOW they did it that didn’t stick well with folks from our neck o’ the woods.

You see, I’m from Cabin Creek, near the site of the famous coal miner strike of 1921, where mine workers got so “out of hand” that President Warren Harding sent in federal troops to force them back to work, as well as sent Billy Mitchell’s squadron in the hills to carry out the only bombing campaign against U.S. citizens on U.S. soil. You can read more at http://www.wvculture.org/history/minewars.html.

So I can understand their affection for the Democrats, who generally were responsible for many of the programs that kept Appalachia afloat during the Great Recession (we won’t get into their part in our current one).

Nevertheless, you can’t live on past laurels, and to me, both parties have lost their way — or at least, they took a turn in one direction while I and a lot of other Americans kept going in another.

Freedom matters

Coming from such independent stock, you need to know that freedom matters. Not just to me, but as a foundation for the nation I was brought up to believe in.

Now, this is supposedly the land of the free. And to a large extent it is, so long as we live by the many laws and regulations imposed at all levels of government.

Then again, that’s the rub. Because there isn’t anywhere to turn that we don’t bump up against those laws. And after a career in law, I saw them first hand and the mountains of paper ordinary people have to deal with a system where the deck is stacked against them.

So I guess you’d find me aligned more with what are euphemistically called “third parties” like the Libertarians or Constitutionalists, or even the Green Party (if it’s still around). After all, I was a libertarian (small L) long before I ever heard there was such a party. And though I don’t participate in or particularly support any such party, my leanings follow those of Thomas Jefferson, Henry David Thoreau, Ghandi and others who believed that

“the government that governs least, governs best.”

Betrayed

For a long time I considered myself a conservative Southern Democrat, even after they had long since passed from the political landscape. Throughout the days of Reagan Democrats and later the so-called conservative Democrats like Bill Clinton (Conservative? Yeah, right!), I remained a Democrat.

Yet I honestly can say there weren’t very many Democratic candidates or policies that I supported.

That isn’t to say I opposed the intentions they stated were behind them (like helping those who can’t help themselves), but the way they went about it didn’t sit right with me.

For they engaged in a war of oppression just as bad as that waged by Republicans. Seize power and impose their will upon the nation was their mantra, and they were great at it.

In fact both sides were. It’s just that Republicans never hid the fact they used freedom to justify keeping government control off the backs of big business, big money and big finance, even while using its powers to feed the military-industrial complex, restrict personal freedoms, and impose our will upon the rest of the world.

Then again, when I looked at the Democrats and what they did in office, they did the same thing. They also expanded the scope and power of the Federal government, just in different directions. Sure, it sometimes was done under the guise of “helping” the people, but in many cases it ended up enslaving them and robbing them of the ability to help themselves.

Worse, many good people on both sides gave the distinct impression they sold their souls for power, either their own election (or re-election) or to advance the interests of their own parties at the expense of the national good.

No Political Safe-Harbor for Me

So there’s no where for me to turn, no where to rest my political head. Neither of those sides hold anything for me. Yet they write and control the rules of the game, and make it impossible for any who don’t march lockstep to their tune to have a voice in how the affairs of our nation are conducted.

Lest their be any doubt, let me say what I’m about:

  • Making peace, not war;
  • Empowering and inspiring people to create lives that serve them, as well as each other
  • An efficient, restrained, low-cost government that serves the people instead of rules them with an iron fist;
  • A government that respects, protects and expands the liberty of its people, and doesn’t continually encroach on it for its own power or gain;
  • A government that adheres to Constitutional protections and responsibilities, that lives within the law, that doesn’t create one set of standards for its leadership, employees or benefactors and another for us, and which abides by the same laws it expects us to follow;
  • Treating people fairly, with justice for all;
  • Freedom for all, not oppression, even when it doesn’t directly affect me;
  • Helping those in need or who can’t help themselves;
  • Moving beyond the fear complex that has us locked in its grip and motivates so many of our actions;
  • Living with a consciousness of community, service, compassion, goodness and mercy, exercised voluntarily and responsibly by each of us, and not imposed by those who hold power simply because they think it’s a good idea.

and probably a bunch of other things if wanted to write more.

Notice I didn’t say which of these things should be done by government, and which shouldn’t. I’m happy to leave that open to discussion. My preference is we do them ourselves. But then, the way our affairs are conducted (both political and business) some people need a wake up call, don’t they?

I don’t have any problem with people giving up their own freedoms, or passing laws that apply to them. I do have a problem when they give up mine, or impose their will on me or others. And I particularly object when they do it in a way that continues in perpetuity and is passed along from generation to generation as if an edict from God.

Moreover, I don’t espouse sudden changes in direction, or wholesale dismantling of any of what’s been created. But what I do want is a change in consciousness sufficient to start the transition to a government built for an evolving people, undertaken gradually to avoid far-reaching effects in difficult economic times, backed by the will and ability to sustain it over time.

So, that’s where I stand. As it looks, the two parties don’t leave much room — or hope — for me ever getting what I want.

Yet, that’s the system I live under, a world of conflict between those two warring sides who are hell-bent on taking us who knows where, toward a future I don’t want. I just hope we wake up in time to step back from the precipice.

Until then, it looks like I’ve got to just sit here taking it.

Or do I? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. Maybe one day my voice will be heard, and I’ll get to suggest another way through the mess we’ve created for ourselves.

God bless you indeed. And God bless America. We’re going to need it.

Share

dawn-rising4t_optby John Dennison

Circumstances are ripening for major changes in our world, but they’re bringing with them chaos and conflict over the direction for our future.

The world ahead can be a more peaceful and harmonious place, with far less struggle and sacrifice. But it will not come by resisting the energies of change bombarding our world, for resistance brings distortion and manifests greater struggle between the extremes.

To create this new reality, first ut  It is therefore crucial to not put energy into the escalating battles between those who cling to an outdated status quo and others who push to change it — and that means avoiding the urge to take sides and jump into the fray.

For when we do, our participation intensifies the polarity and creates even more reasons to fight — and obstacles to overcome on our way to the new world.

This doesn’t mean rolling over and playing dead to the abuses and oppression, nor to stop adding our contributions to a better tomorrow. But it does require us to develop a sensitivity to the tug of the energies within us, and how our own inner conditions are distorting the unfoldment of the changes they bring.

The unseen currents of these conditions interrupt the process of our own inner evolution, causing them to manifest situations that will force us to confront those aspects of us that are not conducive to the next stages on our path of advancement. So instead of moving smoothly into the new levels of self-knowing and self-expression (and that of the collective consciousness), we are forced to confront old patterns of thought, emotion and activity that keep bringing us more of the same.

The longer we remain within the conflict without addressing its causes within us, the more intense become the circumstances that demand our response. And similarly, the more intense the opposition when we do.

Such situations offer us a choice — either we continue on within the same patterns, or evolve beyond them to higher expressions of our being.

If we allow the conflict responses to be triggered in us (or in our society), they are almost immediately opposed by equal and opposite responses from others. When we get carried away by the dramas, inevitably the conflict grows. And regardless who wins and loses, another situation will be created again down the road, each more intense than the last, to give us another chance. And if we are able, perhaps then to break the response pattern and try another way.

Ironically, both sides on almost every issue sense the need for change. But these inner conditions cause them to seize upon positions and courses of action that move them farther toward their respective extremes and play into self-interests and agendas that are generally not conducive to serving the needs of all.

If the new world is to manifest as we hope it will, we first must begin to see the abuses at both ends of the spectrum are simply reflections of the polarity that exists within us and keeps us in conflict.

This recognition is a key step in integrating these extremes within us and within our society, for it will empower us to let go of aspects of our personalities that are not compatible with our newly awakening selves or the unfolding new world and the new foundations, systems and infrastructure needed to support them.

At its core, this means disentangling ourselves from duality and beginning to see ourselves and our world more as contributing expressions of a whole rather than competing entities that stand or fall on their own.

But this cannot happen simply by remaining the way we are. We must seek a new balance between individual and group consciousness that fosters the expansion of all while honoring the individual variations and emphasis needed by each soul on its evolutionary path.

Such consciousness comes at a price, however. For with it comes greater responsibility, not only for how we conduct our lives, but also for how we construct our relationships with others and take our place in the world.

The opportunity for this is increasingly being thrust into our awareness.

Witness international affairs. The world is shrinking, and the poorer areas of the world are awakening to ask, “What about us?” It’s giving rise to an increasing struggle between industrialized and developing nations on a whole host of issues — not to mention those who would use this conflict for their own ends or exacerbate it to make their case.

Whether manifesting through genocide in Darfur, crackdowns on dissidents in Iran, or fights over control and transfer of wealth based on claims of global warming, the challenge is clear — these energies of change are demanding our attention, and our attention they will get.

But grabbing our attention is only one form of their impact upon us. Because those same changes are happening in us as well.

No longer are we comfortable ignoring the struggles of others, or pursuing our own desires to others’ detriment or that of our world, forcing us to consider whether to continue on paths that serve only us, or find ways they can serve others as well.

Those same energies are affecting our internal politics as well, manifesting through highly-charged situations that encourage us to question whether more of the same will take us where we want to go. Governmental responses to the recent financial crisis, economic downturn, and health care debate shine a harsh light on our willingness to allow money, influence and power to set the course of our common affairs — providing us incentive to reach for something more if we dare.

But it isn’t enough to stand in opposition to these perceived abuses simply to seize the reigns of power for our own ends, for that risks setting in motion a new set of circumstances over which to fight. And we must resist the urge to succumb to appeals playing to our pent-up frustration lest others do it for us. For even those who profess to help us by opposing the powers that be can fall prey to the allure of the extremes, too often asserting altruistic stances that mask a desire for power, furtherance of agendas, or manipulation by others behind the scenes.

As always, these situations bring the opportunity to choose the direction of our evolvement. When we take sides in their fights over money or who benefits from controlling the reigns of power, we show we’re still caught up in the same beliefs and practices that allowed them to take hold in the first place — and reality responds by bringing us even more such situations to experience.

But when we instead refuse to play their games and apply our energies in new directions, our commitment to evolve beyond duality sets in motion a new reality to serve our shifting intentions.

However, when it comes down to it even such a choice is illusory, for we really don’t have the option to remain behind in our comfort zone of conflict. This is the Ascension, the time of changes, and we will be forced to evolve whether we like it or not. Such chances will continue to arise at every turn until we take the next step in our evolution — at least, for those who remain here on earth. The question is, how will we take it?

Will we use these evolutionary undercurrents to move beyond polarity, or will we wait for our differences to lead us to the brink of our own destruction when we will have no choice but to do so or perish?

These are the challenges facing us all. How we meet them will determine the ease with which the new world unfolds.

* * * * *

(c) 2009-10 John Dennison

Share