I've devoted my life single pointedly to spiritual awakening for twenty five years. Twenty of those years were spent living in a focused and intense practice community. And over the last ten years I have been in a process of integrating two decades worth of learning while continuing to practice in a variety of forms and writing and teaching about it all throughout the world.
If I were to sum up what I have discovered that is truly valuable I would say this.
Reality is not fixed. There may be nothing about what we experience as real that cannot change. And at our highest level of creativity we – the human beings that we are right now – can author a new reality. In fact, we have been authoring reality for a long time, even though we often don't realize it.
In short, the thing that I intend to share during this summer's Soul of a New Self retreat is the direct experience that you are an artist of possibility – that you can and are creating what is possible for yourself and the world.
The reason we often don't feel this way and instead feel stuck in a world of limited possibility where our efforts to generate change often feel like pushing a rock up a steep hill is because we don't realize that a great deal of what we are fighting with is the rigidity of our own hearts and minds.
Spiritual liberation if it means anything, means freeing out hearts and minds from all assumptions of limitation.
Please refrain for a moment from assuming that you already know this in the hopes that I may be pointing to a depth of pliability and freedom that you have not already experienced.
You see, even the idea that there is a reality to be discovered needs to be questioned.
For thousands of years in one way or another we have been trained to assume that we “live in a reality.” That reality existed before we did and will be there when we are gone. This assumption needs to be called into question.
And what is reality? It is the word we use to describe that which lies beyond our capacity to affect change. Reality, we have been taught, is the collection of things, ideas, forces, principles, or laws that cannot change. That is the box that we imagine we live “inside of.”
On this summer's retreat we will explore the possibility that there is no reality, at least none that we can ever truly understand. We will use the time-honored practice of deep meditation as a doorway that will take us directly into the experience of ‘being' free of any fixed notions about reality.
In the wondrous uncertainty of knowing nothing we will discover the awesome creative potential we have to author new realities. Most often our energy is consumed by trying to win the game we are currently playing. But we can do much better than that. We can change the rules of the game. We can try new games and create new playing fields. And the first step in that creative process will always be learning how to stop playing the game we're in.
Once we step out of the current game of the world and extract ourselves from reality as it appears to be we enter into a space of truly unlimited possibility. That thrilling and mysterious space that I sometimes call ‘between-ness' will become the ground of creativity that we will step off from into new possibilities together.
By systematically questioning some of our deepest assumptions ‘about reality' we will enter into a succession of new realities. We will experience the true pliability of our hearts and minds and see for ourselves that together we can re-create the world.
In fact, we already are.