Sacred Activism and the Conscious Elder John Robinson www.johnrobinson.org
This is a time of collective initiation. Conscious elders, startled into a shocking new historical era, now face profound and unexpected tasks, gifts and responsibilities. This is not our old familiar world and we cannot go back. But this horizon holds the potential for a psychological and spiritual renewal unprecedented in human history, one that will produce a quantum leap forward if we participate meaningfully. As Howard Thurman advised, “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive!” This is a time for discerning what makes us come alive and then doing it!
In depth psychology, the shadow, trickster, or devil archetype often unleashes huge transformational energies. In many respects, Trump represents our collective shadow – all the repressed, censored, dark, eruptive energies we have buried inside. But as Jung told us, the shadow is 90% gold! Jeremy Taylor, a teacher of Jung and dreams, recently wrote, “…the ‘hidden gift’ in the colossal projected shadow of Donald Trump is potentially granting us all ‘permission’ to explore and manifest our deepest creative energies and responses to the world.” Trump may be the unwitting precursor of an enormous change in the collective psyche.
As Philosopher Grant Maxwell observes in his new book, The Dynamics of Transformation, the evolution of genuinely new ideas and forms is typically unpredictable, disruptive, and shocking. He also suggests that some great and as yet unknown archetype may now be constellating in the depths of the human psyche. In other words, this disruption may be opening a new chapter in the history of democracy and civilization, unconsciously inviting us all to participate in a more vital, creative and engaged citizenship. Something deeper is at work here, a new expression of the human enterprise and a new worldview.
If conscious elders are going to light a path through the darkness of this time, we need to understand where we are and how we can respond most maturely. In the psychological dimension, we need to stay together and work through our feelings rather than react blindly, collapse in despair, or drop out. And we need to realize that anything we feel deeply holds the potential for transformation, releasing new energies and creative insights for positive action. Crises bring us back to the liberating reality of the present. I remember an old friend of mine telling me about the day her house burned down. She suddenly found herself feeling incredibly free, free to create a new life, to release the shackles of her old identity and pursue a new adventure.
In the spiritual dimension, we need to ask ourselves bigger questions and about the meaning and purpose of this time. For example, “What are my ultimate spiritual beliefs about why this is happening?” “How would my personal spiritual heroes respond to this situation?” And “Where is God in this upheaval?” And we need to return to our spiritual practices to stay centered and grounded.
Last, but not least, we need to call upon the mystical dimension, spending time in the Presence and letting its nature and consciousness expand our awareness and response capabilities. We are so much more than we think. We need to pray and ask for divine guidance. This awakening to the divine dimension in aging is not about escape from our obligations to the world—but a powerful shift to a new level of engagement. If we wish to transform our current human crisis, we must return to the mystical consciousness of a divine being in a divine world, an experience that becomes increasingly available in sacred aging.
To me, as a mystic, in this moment of awakening, it feels as if I touch the infinite surface of Being, which I envision as the smooth, rubber-like surface tension of a vast black lake. I am convinced that touching this surface sends vibrations throughout the whole cosmos, like pounding a huge drumhead sending oscillating waves across Creation. I can actually feel myself striking this great drum with both hands – boom, boom, boom – and sending powerful undulations of love, meaning and possibility through the immensity of time, reality and consciousness.
Like the surprise experienced by my friend when she lost her house, what is being evoked in us is likely to be something much larger and more creative than we would have imagined. Indeed, it may be the doorway to the next state of human consciousness. This is a time to deepen our awareness of eternal values, recognize the world as Self, join others, and then act from the deep oneness of Being. Everything we’ve ever done in our lives has led us to this moment. And together, we call on everything we are to pound our drums as one great loving force. As the echoes of our drumbeats return, their rhythms overlap with new ones. We are building a new Creation.
Check out John’s new book titled “The Divine Human”.
AWAKENING TO THE HIGHER WE
What is mutual awakening? It is about that moment when it comes for you, for us, to pursue what the mystics are pointing to – toward collective forms of development and awakening, to light up the pathways between us with energy, love, and creativity. If we move into this next stage of spiritual and cultural evolution, through this higher relatedness, we will potentially navigate the challenges that our globalizing world is presenting us with, and we will also find a deeper fulfillment, receive direct guidance from the deepest source of the cosmos, find abundance in life, and manifest our purest potentials as humans.
Through these deep connections, where we call forth each other’s potentials and expand what is possible within existence, we are irrepressibly inspired, touched, moved, excited, and creatively ignited by each other on a daily if not momentary basis.
When this occurs, you can still feel your own distinctness and particularity—in fact, you feel more intimate with your own depths than ever before. And you can feel the other with a deep, intimate sense of care and concern. Simultaneously, you also feel connected to something that is bigger than both of you, as if your connection with each other is a portal to a connection with all of existence. The energy of that vast process starts to flow through you and between you, carrying you forward with its own momentum. You feel a yearning that seems to come from the heart of the cosmos—the yearning to be related and to express your love for each other and for life.
Those who have embarked upon this new life in the Evolutionary Collective are ready to connect beyond the limitations of the ego and survival consciousness. Evolutionary relatedness demands integrity, it demands that we accept responsibility for the inescapable influence we have on one another, and it demands a wholehearted commitment to serve more than our individual selves.
It’s from that orientation that Patricia Albere and the Evolutionary Collective is discovering and creating the tools, practices, techniques and means for the innovative transformation the planet is urgently inviting and calling the practice mutual awakening. And the reality is, those pieces can only be created together.
Conscious evolution is the evolution of evolution, from unconscious to conscious choice. While consciousness has been evolving for billions of years, conscious evolution is new. It is part of the trajectory of human evolution, the canvas of choice before us now as we recognize that we have come to possess the powers that we used to attribute to the gods.
We are poised in this critical moment, facing decisions that must be made consciously if we are to avoid destroying the world as we know it, if we are instead to cocreate a future of immeasurable possibilities. Our conscious evolution is an invitation to ourselves, to open to that positive future, to see ourselves as one planet, and to learn to use our powers wisely and ethically for the enhancement of all life on Earth.
Conscious evolution can also be seen as an awakening of a ‘memory’ that resides in the synthesis of human knowing, from spiritual to social to scientific. Indeed, all of our efforts to discover the inherent design of life itself can be seen as the process of one intelligence, striving to know itself through our many eyes, and to set the stage for a future of immense cocreativity.
This awakening has gained momentum as 3 new understandings (the 3 C’s) have arisen:
Cosmogenesis: This is the recent discovery that the universe has been and is now evolving. As Brian Swimme puts it, “time is experienced as an evolutionary sequence of irreversible transformations,” rather than as ever-renewing cycles.
Our New Crises: We are faced with a complex set of crises, most especially environmental. We are participating in a global system that is far from equilibrium, conditions that are known to favor a macroshift. This kind of dramatic repatterning can be a sudden shift toward devolution and chaos, or it can be an evolution toward a higher more complex order. At this moment in evolution the outcome depends on our choices, and time is running out. We must change, or suffer dire consequences. Our crises are acting as evolutionary drivers pressuring us to innovate and transform.
Our New Capacities: The advent of radical evolutionary technologies such as biotechnology, nanotechnology, quantum computing, space exploration, etc., offer us the possibility of profound change in the physical world. At the same time that we are facing the possible destruction of our life support systems, we can also see that the tools are there to transform ourselves, our bodies and our world. We can and are actually moving beyond the creature human condition toward a new species, a universal humanity, capable of coevolving with nature.
Jean Houston, Ph.D., scholar, philosopher and researcher in Human Capacities, is one of the foremost visionary thinkers and doers of our time. She is long regarded as one of the principal founders of the Human Potential Movement. Dr. Houston is noted for her ability to combine a deep knowledge of history, culture, new science, spirituality and human development into her teaching. She is known for her inter-disciplinary perspective delivered in inspirational and humorous keynote addresses.
A prolific writer, Dr. Houston is the author of 26 books including “Jump Time”, “ A Passion for the Possible”, “Search for the Beloved”, “Life Force”, “The Possible Human”, “Public Like a Frog”, “A Mythic Life: Learning to Live Our Greater Story”, and “Manual of the Peacemaker”.
As Advisor to UNICEF in human and cultural development, she has worked around the world helping to implement some of their extensive educational programs. In September of 1999, she traveled to Dharamsala, India as a member of a group chosen to work with the Dalai Lama in a learning and advisory capacity. Dr. Houston has also served in an advisory capacity to President and Mrs. Clinton as well as assisting Mrs. Clinton in her writing of her book, “It Takes A Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us”. She has met with President and Mrs. Carter, and with leaders in many countries and cultures. As a high school student she worked closely with another First Lady of the United States, Eleanor Roosevelt, in developing strategies to introduce international awareness and United Nations work to young people.
Since 2003, she has been working with the United Nations Development Program, training leaders in human and cultural development as well as in Social Artistry, a community-leadership training program that she developed. Together with other international agencies and companies, over the last 45 years, Dr. Houston has worked in over 100 countries.
In 1965, along with her husband Dr. Robert Masters, Dr. Houston founded The Foundation for Mind Research. She is also the founder and principal teacher, since 1983, of the Mystery School, now called the Renaissance of Spirit, a school of human development, a program of cross-cultural, mythic and spiritual studies, dedicated to teaching history, philosophy, the New Physics, psychology, anthropology, and the many dimensions of human potential.
In 2008, the Jean Houston Foundation was formed to teach Social Artistry in the United States and overseas. This training has been conducted in Albania, the Eastern Caribbean, Kenya, Zambia, Nepal, and the Philippines.
A powerful and dynamic speaker, she holds conferences and seminars with social leaders, educational institutions and business organizations worldwide. Jean Houston has worked intensively in 40 cultures helping to enhance and deepen their own uniqueness while they become part of the global community.
Dr. Houston is considered one of the most evocative and entertaining speakers on aligning the human spirit, potential and action with the needs of the time. Her talks are legendary for their ability to inspire, inform and activate her audience. Her lifetime passion is to encourage the inherent possibilities, visions and capacities that lie within each person and/or group, and translate them into positive action.
Jean Houston holds a B.A. from Barnard College, a Ph.D. in psychology from the Union Graduate School and a Ph.D. in religion from the Graduate Theological Foundation. She has also been the recipient of honorary doctorates.
“Jean Houston’s mind should be considered a national treasure”, said Buckminster Fuller, a renowned American philosopher, thinker, visionary, inventor, architect, engineer, mathematician, poet and cosmologist. A life-long friend of Jean Houston, his observation is shared by the thousands of individuals, communities, organizations and nations that have been and continue to be inspired by her words.
Dr. Houston is a past-President of the Association of Humanistic Psychology, and has lectured in philosophy, human development, psychology, and religion as well as cross-cultural studies at national and international colleges and universities. She has also taught as a professor and guest speaker at Columbia University, Hunter College, the New School for Social Research, Marymount College, the University of California at Santa Cruz and the University of British Columbia.
Her work has been the core of a great many teaching-learning communities throughout many parts of the world. In 1984, she created a national not-for-profit organization, The Possible Society, to encourage the creation of new ways for people to work together to help solve societal problems. Giving seminars to large groups of citizens in 17 cities throughout North America, she established ongoing teaching-learning communities devoted to the enrichment of their citizens and the betterment of their cities.
In 1985, Dr. Houston was awarded the Distinguished Leadership Award from the Association of Teachers Educators. In 1993, she received the Gardner Murphy Humanitarian Award for her work in psychology and the INTA Humanitarian of the Year award. In 1994, she received the Lifetime Outstanding Creative Achievement Award from the Creative Education Foundation. The following year, she was given the Keeper of the Lore Award for her studies in myth and culture. In 1997 she was made a Fellow of the World Business Academy. In 1999 she received that Pathfinder award from the Association of Humanistic Psychology. She was given the Millennium award in 2000. In 2011 she was named Spiritual Hero of the year by the Science of Mind magazine.
Her PBS Special, A Passion for the Possible, has been widely shown. Her book drawn from the program was published by Harper San Francisco in August of 1997.
Documentaries of Dr. Houston’s life and teachings will be published in 2012.
Thomas Hübl is a young German spiritual teacher and is the one I am currently studying with myself. He teaches a lot of online courses which are composed of video talks and meditations at various intervals and in-between his organization helps you come together with “triad” partners to work on the material you are learning together. I enjoy the people that also study with Thomas very much and find over time that I am developing a larger and larger group of people with whom I resonate deeply and LOVE having conversations with. These are not ordinary surface-level conversations. We explore the deepest areas we can reach together and we never have any idea about what is going to happen in our meetings before it happens. We just get curious together and explore new dimensions of what spiritual development is about, what it means to be in relation with each other and so much more. Thomas has a lot of his sangha in Europe and in Israel, but he is getting more well known now in the US.Thomas Hübl was born in Vienna in 1971. As a 26-year-old medical student who was also very interested in bodywork and related therapies, he felt a strong inner calling. He took the radical step of following this inner wish, abandoning his studies and spending the next four years in retreat in the Czech Republic. During this time he did almost nothing except meditate and explore the spaces of inner consciousness. Looking back on this time, Thomas speaks of a fundamental opening that took place.
After returning to Vienna, he started offering one-to-one sessions. His ability to touch people very deeply and encourage them to take a look beyond what they usually see soon led to invitations to lead larger workshops.His popularity then grew further and he became known internationally. Since 2004 Thomas has been active worldwide, organizing talks, workshops, trainings, tonings and larger events such as the popular Celebrate Life Festival or his Healing Events which have brought together thousands of Germans with many Israelis to acknowledge, face, and heal the cultural shadow left by the Holocaust. When he is not traveling, he lives in Berlin and Tel Aviv together with his partner, the Israeli artist Yehudit Sasportas and has one young daughter.
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