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CONNECTING WITH AN OPEN HEART

CONNECTING WITH AN OPEN HEART

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Last week I received an invitation from a small town in Wyoming to a ceremony for Vietnam veterans. The names of each are being etched into a plaque to be mounted in the town square next month. They invited me as one of their own – a vet from Cowley, Wyoming. I felt the depth of the honoring this town has for me and for my fellow veterans that came from there. I was so appreciative, but the thing is, I am not from that town!

I was busy, but I emailed back: I served in Vietnam, but I am not from Cowley. Thank you so very much for thinking of me. I feel like I have been adopted. Love, Gary. Within hours another email arrived: Hi Gary. I do not know how you received this email. I am aware of your great work. I love your books…and am baffled as to how you landed on this list. Love, John

Now I have a connection with Cowley, Wyoming, and John and the people in Cowley and the people from Cowley who served their country. This came at the perfect time for me. Linda and I live in a small town, also. Sometimes I forget how many people have read my books and appreciate them. This unexpected invitation helped me to remember, and it filled me with joy. I cannot say it was a misplaced invitation, because it found the person who needed most to read it. Me.

If you think you know all you need to know to reach beyond your familiar environments – to create authentic power – please consider my story. Without reaching out to others, you will never swim in the vast ocean of meaning and fulfillment around you. Like a small fish that has never left a coral reef, you will live in the illusion that you have experienced all your life offers you and that your joy and freedom demand. This is the life I was living when this picture was taken.

Connecting with others with an open heart is the greatest challenge and reward of the Earth school. Only frightened parts of your personality resist it, and they are the parts that confine you. The next time you feel withdrawn, uninterested, preoccupied, or overwhelmed, try giving the frightened parts of your personality the strongest challenge you can. Open yourself to someone. Open your heart and share your attention. Share the precious presence you are in the Earth school. See what you can learn about yourself. See what you can contribute to others.

You may also want to look at other frightened parts of your personality that could be keeping you from connecting with your heart, such those that are extroverted, the life of the party, gregarious, full of themselves, and too busy to answer an email that obviously doesn’t pertain to them.

Life beyond the reef is amazing.

Love.
Linda & Gary
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DON’T LET THE ELECTION DISTRACT YOU

DON’T LET THE ELECTION DISTRACT YOU

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Don’t let the election in the United States be a distraction. Two political parties each pursuing external power have produced a destructive and predictable consequence. The pursuit of external power – the ability to manipulate and control – is now counterproductive to our evolution. It is toxic. This means that attempting to change circumstances in any way with external power will not produce the world that we desire – a world of harmony, cooperation, sharing, and reverence for Life. It will only contribute more to the world of what the world is currently made of – fear.

The only remedy to fear is love. The only place where you can choose between the intention of love and the intention of fear is in yourself. This is the contribution that you can make. It may seem a small contribution, but that is from the perspective of the five senses. From a multisensory perspective it is the strongest and most powerful contribution that you can make to our common collective. It is the most powerful and constructive contribution that you can make to Life. And it is the contribution that you were born to make.

To create with love requires you to identify fear in yourself and challenge it by not acting on it and instead act from the most loving part of your personality that you can. The frightened parts of your personality are those that you experience as anger, jealousy, resentment, terror, depression, humiliation, happiness at getting what you want, etc. The loving parts of your personality are those that you experience as gratitudeappreciationcaring, and patience, among others.

From a five-sensory perspective, it may appear impossible to be grateful or appreciative of an occurrence that you do not want to happen. From a multisensory perspective, it is an opportunity to grow spiritually, and opportunities to grow spiritually are always being offered to us in the intimacy of our own experiences, no matter what is happening outside of us such as a 911 type event or a macro event such as the election of an American president that was created by the same energy, the energy of fear.

Now is the time to come to terms with the energy of fear in you, to use your courage to experience fear fully emotionally in terms of physical sensations in your body and to challenge it by choosing consciously to act with an intention of love. Look for what you can find to be grateful for in the world around you. See what you can find about yourself and change in yourself for the better. Create authentic power.
This is our opportunity. This is always our opportunity.
Everything else is a distraction.
Love.
Linda & Gary
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AFTER THE ELECTION – THE NEXT STEP

AFTER THE ELECTION – THE NEXT STEP

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The great American president, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, said at the beginning of World War II, “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.” That was a brave statement made from a five-sensory perspective to a five-sensory country in a five-sensory world. Human perception was limited to what we could see, hear, touch, taste, and smell. Now our perception is expanding beyond these limitations. We sense ourselves as souls as well as than minds and bodies, the world as meaningful rather than random, and the Universe as wise and compassionate. This expanded perception, multisensory perception, is emerging in each of us, and as it does it is revealing new things about fear that are very relevant and helpful. Here is one of them: “When fear ceases to scare you, it cannot stay.”

Fear will continue to scare you until you have the courage to turn inward and face it – the painful physical sensations of it, the judgmental, destructive, and violent thoughts of it – and challenge them by acting with an intention of harmony, cooperationsharing, or reverence for Life while you are experiencing fear. This creates a new type of power in you – authentic power, the alignment of your personality with your soul. Authentic power is now necessary for your evolution and the evolution of our species

Can you do this? Yes, you can. And we can support one another. This is what we were born to do.

Love.
Linda & Gary
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THE NEW ARENA

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This is a moment in the history of America and the history of the world in which we are beginning to experience in intimately personal terms the extent to which fear controls our activities. We are realizing for the first time as a species that personal growth is not a shallow or inconsequential activity. It is necessary and powerful. We are also appreciating for the first time as a species that challenging fear in ourselves and cultivating love in ourselves is the only way that we can change the world

All of this is entirely new. We are in completely new evolutionary terrain. There are no maps. All that we learned before – that our perception is limited to five senses, that power is the ability to manipulate and control, that individuals who do not possess it are insignificant – is now counterproductive. None of the old ways works any longer. New ways are calling to us.
They require commitmentcouragecompassion, and conscious communication and actions

Each choice of love is conscious participation in the evolution of your soul, in the evolution of all the collectives in which you participate, in the evolution of the Earth school, and in the evolution of Life itself. Each of us is responsible for what we create. The world reflects what we create. It shows us what we need to change in ourselves to create a reflection of harmonycooperationsharing, and reverence for Life.

We can learn this lesson from our experiences of this election, if we are open to learning it. This lesson is now coming into focus for millions as we evolve in an entirely different way, with an entirely different consciousness, and with an entirely different understanding of power – the alignment of the personality with the soul.

We have entered a startling new arena of human experience – the domain of nonphysical reality, Teachers, wisdom, and compassion. And our responsibilities in it are becoming unmistakable.

Love.
Linda & Gary
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WARRIOR OF THE HEART

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My adopted Lakota brother, Phil Lane, Jr., told me a story at a gathering of young Native Americans I have never forgotten, and I feel certain that I never will. A rancher on the plains often saw a sweat lodge near his range. A sweat lodge is a low dome-shaped tent made of bent young trees. In the old days they were covered with buffalo skins. Now they are covered with tarps that are covered with old blankets. The lodge cannot be entered except through a small door that makes people crawl to enter. It is difficult not to be humble while crawling into a sacred space to pray.
It is hot in the lodge. Water is thrown onto red-hot rocks from a fire outside, and the steam makes the lodge feel like a sauna. Between each round of prayer, people go outside to lie on the ground or walk and breath the fresh air. Then they go back into the lodge to pray some more.

During one of the times between rounds, the rancher rode up to the people on the ground and asked, in a rough voice because he was frightened, “What are you doin’ in there?” The short conversation between him and the Lodge Master went like this: “We are prayin’. What are you prayin’ for? We are prayin’ for you.” I knew the story was true because that is what the people in my sweat lodges did, also. They prayed for everyone, not only themselves.

Phil Lane, Jr., is a hereditary Chief, and he received much criticism and anger from other Native Americans of many different tribes for his gatherings that included white people. “How can you do such a thing!” they demanded. “How can you give white people our sacred rituals? They have taken everything from us. They have taken our land. They have taken our homes. And now you want to give them the only thing we have left – our culture!”

Phil patiently explained again and again, “Now is the time of the coming of the prophecies. The Great Spring has arrived. Now is coming the Day That Will Not Be Followed By Night. We must share our wisdom with our Brothers and Sisters.” The elders agreed with Phil, and they taught him and supported him

This was almost thirty years ago. Now we are blessed to hear these healthy, grounded, life-affirming teachings of a shared Humanity, of one family of Life, and of our Responsibilities to it and to one another from many voices, young as well as elder. You can hear these voices at Standing Rock. They are sharing with us what Native American elders taught them and their ancestors for thousands of years. They are showing us what we need to do to heal the damage that we have caused, and how to soften a self-created climate disruption that now threatens all life.

Native wisdom around the world can teach us more about how to relate to Mother Earth than even the most heart-felt scientists. We have ignored this wisdom, disdained it, and killed those who carry it for five hundred years.

Now is a good time to listen, and to pray with our Native American sons and daughters and brothers and sisters – for water protectors and police, for people we agree with and people we don’t, for the one family of Life that we are and all our relatives in it.

Here is a link to a delightful modern expression of this wisdom from a young Native American. I recommend her videos and words for your consideration.

https://youtu.be/PqeKe7u9iwM

Love.
Linda & Gary
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DON’T LOSE YOUR COMPASSION

DON’T LOSE YOUR COMPASSION

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When I first arrived on Okinawa more than fifty years ago almost everyone told me that I would not want to leave at the end of my tour of duty. They were right. Okinawa’s white sand beaches and turquoise waters were breathtakingly beautiful. Lush green covered the island, and I slowly discovered how much I liked it. I was mostly surrounded by Americans. I saw only Americans where I lived, ate, and shopped. Even the beaches were filled with Americans.

The largest Air Force base abutted the downtown area of the largest city. It was busy and noisy, as was the other Air Base. Okinawans disliked all the American installations on their island. They disliked the Japanese, also, for putting them there.
I was in our barracks when an order came for personnel to participate in “crowd control.” A large protest had begun outside the downtown Air Base. All my enlisted men were conscripted. They had no training for this – we were guerrilla warfare experts – but they did their best to follow their orders. I discovered later that most of them generally felt neither hostility nor sympathy for the demonstrators. They merely did the best they could without preparation, experience, or knowledge of the situation.
The North Dakota highway patrolmen, small town police officers, sheriffs, and their counterparts from neighboring rural states are in the same position. Most have little, if any, experience of this type. They are dressed for battle, and they are prepared to do battle on the frozen plains of North Dakota, but with whom? Shivering, defenseless, non-violent people?
This is inherently confusing. The nobility of their profession has been betrayed. Frightened parts of every personality refuse to accept possibilities such as this, much less allow emotional experiences of them. It took me decades to realize that the nobility I assumed my Green Beret would give me never existed, except in the distorted perceptions of the parts of my personality that originate in fear, not in love.

The courageous law enforcement officers who risked their jobs and reputations by refusing to return to Standing Rock are much more aware of themselves, their values, and the world than I was on Okinawa. How can we judge their colleagues who are less aware without expecting others to judge us when we also do the best we can? (Jesus asked us this question).

We can instead hold everyone at Standing Rock in our hearts and pray for their health and safety – police officers, pipeline workers, water protectors, veterans, reporters, and guests. We can be compassionate with all of them. Compassion is the medicine that we give to ourselves at the same time that we give it to others. When we become compassionate with others, we become compassionate with ourselves too. The Standing Rock gathering, like every experience in the Earth school, offers us opportunities to give and receive this medicine.

Love.
Linda & Gary
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HOW TO CREATE COMPASSIONATE HOLIDAYS

HOW TO CREATE COMPASSIONATE HOLIDAYS

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Compassionate Holidays require that you act consciously each moment. Unconscious caretaking and pleasing others (giving gifts because it is the “season”) are NOT compassionate deeds. They ignore the humanity of the recipient because the recipient is being exploited by frightened parts of your personality. This type of interaction multiplied billions of time each “Holiday Season” makes the experience much less than it could be.

Compassion is being moved to and by acts of the heart. I am not speaking of the sentimental “heart,” the “heart” that feels pity and need to fix other’s problems (these are experiences of frightened parts of the personality). I am speaking of the most healthy, inclusive, grounded, and loving part of yourself. If this heart is not involved, no compassion is present. Therefore a compassionate Holiday, like a compassionate family dinner or a compassionate country requires you to replace the experiences of frightened parts of your personality (which also include anger, impatience, frustration, and judging) with the experiences of loving parts (gratitude, appreciation, patience, caring). This creates authentic power.

People who do not know about authentic power want very much to experience compassion, especially during the Holiday Season, but they don’t know how so they try to will compassion into themselves. This makes compassion even more difficult to experience because the effort to experience it is really an effort to make themselves feel better, which is the opposite of compassion
Most people are not aware of this close relationship between creating authentic power and experiencing compassion, but it is obvious to those who know even a little once they begin to think about it. You cannot be compassionate and angry at the same time, or compassionate and jealous at the same time, or intend to exploit someone and be compassionate with that person at the same time.

There is no such thing as compassionate Holidays. There are only compassionate individuals, and in each instance, compassion is a matter of choice – the choice to create authentic power, to challenge frightened parts of your personality and cultivate loving parts. A compassionate Holiday is impossible without a compassionate day before the holiday, day after the holiday, and compassionate days before and after those.

Happy Holi (Holy) Days,

Linda & Gary
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THE BIGGEST COMMUNITY

THE BIGGEST COMMUNITY

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Imagine a community that includes everyone. This is impossible from the perspective that is limited to what we can see, hear, touch, smell, and taste. From this perspective power is ability to manipulate and control, and everyone seeks it. Survival requires it, and human evolution requires survival.

From this perspective, communities are good things. Individuals who dress, behave, think, and believe alike are safe in them. Communities are shelters of sameness, and they are effective. As we become multisensory and begin to experience ourselves and our world beyond the limitations of the five senses, we recognize something so evident that we are shocked not to have seen it before. Communities do NOT bring individuals together. They keep them apart! They separate differences forever because frightened parts of our personalities forever fear differences.

Now we are leaving the domain of the five senses behind. Survival is no longer sufficient. Our evolution now demands spiritual development, and spiritual development opens the waterways of love. Soul-to-soul connections sweep away all distinctions between personalities – color, size, appearance, and belief. They become inconsequential to personalities as consciousness of their souls emerge within them.

We want to include, not exclude. We strive for love, not fear. Our emotions inform us, nonphysical Teachers assist us, and we ourselves choose the roads we will travel. All lead to home, and we are all travelers – now waking, now welcoming others along the way, now emerging with astonished eyes into a community without boundaries that includes everyone – the Biggest Community – and recognizing it for the first time as the home that has always been ours.

Love.
Linda & Gary
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A DIFFERENT CHOICE

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Linda and I spent a wonderful two weeks in Japan. I was curious about how open the Japanese would be to authentic power and spiritual partnerships (partnerships between equals for the purpose of spiritual growth). They are very open. They drank in everything we shared and asked for more. A magazine that interviewed us last year doubled the number of pages devoted to this year’s interview and is publishing a Special Edition to feature it. People at our workshop, both men and women, who were somewhat reserved at the beginning became warm and loving family members to us and one another by the en

Five-sensory Japanese finger-paint the symbol for “Small” on the foreheads of female neonates at birth and the symbol for “Big” on the foreheads of male neonates. (They really do.) This may sound shocking, but if we look around us we will see that Americans do the same, except without the paint. The root cause of assigning different values to souls in the Earth school is fear, and fear is part of the human experience. When we judge other cultures, we indulge fear. When we judge anything we do the same. The Japanese participants in our workshops wanted to learn how to challenge fear in themselves, not change other people. They came to create authentic power instead of pursue external power – the ability to manipulate and control.

The thirst for authentic power and the natural attraction of deep and substantive relationships among equals are multisensory experiences, and they are emerging in millions of individuals around the world – Japanese, American, Brazilian, Chinese, young, old, wealthy, and indigent. They are emerging in you, and they are emerging in me.

Linda and I love sharing about authentic power and spiritual partnerships, and we love experimenting with them in the Earth school.

Love.
Linda & Gary
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Kindness

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Last week our granddaughter graduated from Oregon State University. Linda and I were thrilled. The guest speaker surprised everyone. Instead of the usual encouragement to climb mountains and follow dreams, he suggested that the graduates be kind. “As you grow older,” said this wise and accomplished Turkish businessman who also has founded a four-year university in Turkey, “you will find that your most fulfilling moments will be times of giving or receiving kindness.” I agree. Dreams, aspirations, and successful ventures are not difficult to accomplish compared with developing kindness toward others and toward yourself. When you are encapsulated in a frightened part of your personality – such as anger, jealousy, despair, superiority and entitlement, inferiority and need to please – how can you experience kindness for others or for yourself? How can you experience kindness when a frightened part of your personality wants to kill someone or kill itself?

Our species is expanding in its perception beyond the five senses. Getting the job done, finishing first, having it all – now lead nowhere. These goals are parts of the pursuit of external power. External power is the ability to manipulate and control. Pursuing external power now creates only violence and destruction. Our evolution now requires us to create another kind of power – authentic power. Authentic power is the alignment of your personality with your soul. It is the ability to distinguish in yourself the difference between love and fear and choose love no matter what is happening inside you (such as anger, jealousy, etc.) or what is happening outside you (such as a 911-type event).

If you are called, we invite you to attend our annual summer retreat this year, the Journey to the Soul, in Portland Oregon and learn about authentic power and practice creating it and spiritual partnerships. The Journey is different each year, and Linda and I enjoy more and more sharing it each year.

Eventually we will all graduate from the Earth school. When you do, kindness will be your way of life, your joy, and your fulfillment.

Love.
Linda & Gary