Excerpt from a talk given on 1/23/22 to Unity of Greater Rochester
DEEP within the heart of all human souls is a desire to help others. This is a given because it is the way we were designed. Isn’t that lovely? We are here on earth, in this magnificent body, to help one another…… The challenge is that we often try to help others without first helping ourselves. That is, We may try to heal our lives by focusing on healing something outside ourselves before we heal within. There is also an innate desire, an impulse to continually move toward wholeness and healing. This is the basis for healing………This innate movement to healing is in every cell in our bodies. We see it every day: when we cut our finger and it heals, or we get a cold, and we get well………. even psychologically, there is an organic drive to heal whatever causes us strife. Rev. Marvin Anderson told our Unity ministerial class of 1986, that our job was not to be ministers, ………. that got out attention. He went on to tell us that our only job was to keep working on ourselves, and on our consciousness and then if we were lucky, we would have a career as a minister to encourage others to do the same. I took this command seriously as I already was a deep seeker. I had been a seeker for most of my life; because as so many of us do, I came from a very traumatic and chaotic background, details are not necessary, I came away from these early experiences believing that something was seriously wrong with me. So, I sought healing through Psychology and found Abraham Maslow, who taught about Self-actualization. I was so enamored with this idea that I followed this path fully from age 16 until I found Unity in 1980. Then the missing key was placed into my hand. the missing key was the HOW TO, the missing key gave the answer to how to work on Self-actualization ……… The how to is what Unity teaches: THE VERY PRESENCE OF GOD IS WITHIN EACH ONE OF US, WITHIN ALL OF CREATION AND THERE IS NO PLACE WHERE GOD IS NOT. THAT KNOCKED MY PSYCHOLOGICAL SOCKS RIGHT OFF. So, in understanding the Unity teachings, I was guided to seek this awareness about God within……. However, I did find that though many people did believe this teaching from Unity, they were still not fulfilled. Many people erroneously believe that if God is within, we do not need to focus on healing. This erroneous belief has caused many a person a lot of pain and suffering. In the early days of Unity, people would think, “Well, what is wrong with me that I am dealing with this or that problem.”. They would believe they are just defective and not seek help from others. This is an “abuse of the Unity teachings” to somehow imply that there is something wrong with us if we are having challenges. So, early on, in my ministerial career, I knew that my job was to combine spirituality and psychology……and I have been working on that now for over 40 years. Today we are focusing on connecting with God in our 3-part series on DEEPENING CONNECTIONS WITH GOD, SELF AND OTHERS. And while working on my part of the talk, I noticed that it was hard to not diverge into talking about connecting with others or higher self when thinking about connecting with God. When we connect with God within, and then with others from this place of Divine Connection, the connection we can have with others can be magical. Martin Buber, a German theologian addresses this idea. He called a pure encounter with another as the The I-Thou encounter All of our relationships, Buber contends, bring us ultimately into a closer relationship with God,. Buber saw the meeting between I and Thou as the most important aspect of human experience. Buber contrasted this I–Thou relationship with an I–It relationship. In the I-It-relationship the other person is used or influenced for the gratification of the other.
Nat and I have been on a very long journey to healing our own lives, healing our coupleship and then finding ways to teach what we learn.. Nat articulated this in the early 2000s: He said: Heal your life and live your dreams by DEEPENING CONNECTIONS WITH GOD, SELF AND OTHERS. When I heard this from him, articulated like this, all of my socks were knocked off. That is exactly what I believed but had not languaged it like that. As Unity Truth students the main goal that we should work on is to make these connections our number one priority in life. So, we are advised to willingly seek God within. Then from this place of wholeness, we become willing to connect with others and this creates the space of I- THOU
Thus, it is very important to find like-minded individuals who are also seeking to connect with God within and between and all around us. I used to lead safe and supportive group to facilitate this. Covid has hurt this, but I highly recommend gathering with small groups to further inner growth and to practice creating this sense of I -THOU. Let us prepare for a time of meditation Med-hymn is LORD’S PRAYER BREATHE CENTER RELEASE Turning WITHIN to a very sacred place turning to the kingdom of heaven within Let us breathe to this place, this inner sanctuary and consciously connect with our Father Mother God this inner connection to the Divine is our birth-right and in fact, there is truly never a time that we are not connected but let us make this connection conscious by considering 3 aspects of God within Let us begin with perfect love Perfect LOVE has the ability to transform everything unlike itself and this love is within each one of us Let breathe into perfect love It is within us and is in every cell of our body, it forms the ground of our being…… Pause Let us now connect to guiding light, Divine light is a way of connecting to our Divine Path, the path that our Father Mother God would have us take. The light emanates within and lets us know what is right for our soul. Let us connect with Divine Light Paws And now let us connect with Divine Life, The blueprint for all of life and not only is it within but we can consciously connect with Divine Life Divine life is the energy of God within, ever enabling us to seek to be whole and well and free as God created us to be As we connect to Divine life We can know that God’s life flows through us now…… And we seek healing and wholeness………. Paws in the silence. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be Divine Love, Divine Light, Divine Life Let us now find gratitude for these truths by singing Alleluia, thank you God, Alleluia