Seasons of the Self—August

Now that we’re well into the summer season, it’s easy to see the steady subsiding of daylight. Yet, while the ebbing of light reminds us that fall isn’t far away, the warmth of August is still all summer. This month is a time of fulfillment: everywhere we look, gardens are producing a perfection of ripening crops and burgeoning flowers. Soon it will all be gone but now nature is a feast. With the darkening of fall so close and the heat of summer so present, more than any other season, this late summer month urges us to appreciate the moment, to “be” rather than strive; to live in the fullness of what is and be grateful.

pieraugustI always experience a kind of stillness about this time of year. The expansive growth of spring and summer has spread outward nearly to its limit and in August everything seems to stop for a moment as energy, set all in one direction for nearly half a year, approaches a turning point. In the creative process, it’s akin to the final completion of a project, right before the empty let down that precedes the beginning of the next one. By contrast, stillness of late winter is a time of living empty and pregnant with possibility right before bursting into new growth. August is a time for living full right before it all ends.

Chinese medicine relates this time of year to “grounding” and digesting. It’s not enough to work hard and produce a successful metaphorical crop. For health and well-being we also need the capacity to be present in the moment, in touch with the earth around us, and able to take in and digest the fruits of our labor. We need to be willing to receive.

Receiving is a key, yet often overlooked, aspect of empowerment. It’s easy to become so fixed on the goal and the process of achieving that we forget to be receptive. We may even unconsciously deflect what we most want without realizing it. When we often feel burned out, that we’re doing too much alone, that our efforts are greater than the rewards and we’re somehow missing out on the joy of life, we may be forgetting to receive.

It’s an easy thing to forget. Our culture is so goal-oriented and, consequently, future-oriented that many of us have this tendency ingrained to some extent. We get to thinking that our happiness depends upon achieving certain external outcomes such as a successful career, lots of money, the perfect relationship or a nice house, and then we postpone happiness, doing whatever we have to do to achieve our goal, telling ourselves that we’ll get our reward later. And, while we may succeed in getting the external things we aim for, we may never receive the experience of happiness we were hoping for. By the time we reach one goal we may have already formulated the next one and skip right over the joy of having arrived because we’re so focused on how far we still have to go.

Receiving isn’t simply about accepting what we want when we want it, on our own terms. I’ve often seen people think they have no problem with receiving—it’s just that what they want hasn’t shown up yet! These folks are often holding out for the big prizes they’ve set their sights on while deflecting dozens of small gifts each day. I tend to think that God will only give us as much good as we can stand to receive and if we refuse or ignore the small gifts, we won’t be burdened with bigger ones!

If life’s big gifts are eluding you, ask yourself these questions: When you see a nickel in the street do you pick it up and feel richer or do you pass it by, wishing it were a $20 bill? When someone compliments you, do you appreciate it and say thank you or do you look away, make a joke, and say something self-deprecating? If someone offers to buy you lunch, do you graciously receive it, automatically refuse it, or accept it but feel uncomfortably indebted? When you receive presents, do you enjoy them or are you hard to please with gifts? Is your mind so busy with thoughts of what you’ll have to give back in reciprocation that you don’t feel much pleasure in the receiving? When someone offers to help you, do you gratefully receive it or insist that you can manage alone? (Do you assume you can manage alone more easily than with help?) And, when someone loves you, do you feel blessed by this most precious gift or do you retreat in fear? Do you find the love of only a specific few to be valuable and fail to appreciate the many others who care about you?

If you’re starting to recognize in yourself some of these signs of poor receiving, you’re far from alone, but this is the perfect time of year to begin a new habit. This month, start noticing that there is always something to receive from life. Make a point to recognize all the large and small gifts that come to you and receive them fully. Keep a written account of them. Receive each gift as gratefully and openly as you can, letting go of any of your usual methods of refusing or ignoring God’s gifts. The more you cherish what’s offered, the more you’ll find yourself attracting what you most cherish.

And the next time you walk out of doors, take a moment to just give yourself entirely to the sensations of temperature, breeze, smells, and colors. Breathe deeply and let yourself fully experience the pleasure of the moment. If your mind needs to chew on something, simply repeat over and over a phase such as, “I am overflowing with the richness of life.” Making time to pause and appreciate life’s simple gifts may very well help you recognize and open to other quality-of-life experiences that have been passing you by. Enjoy!


July | Getting in Synch with the Season of Abundance

We so often see our human condition as set apart from the natural world. Not only has this collective mind set contributed to the serious environmental problems of our day, it also denies us access to a certain down-to-earth wisdom about life. I’ve noticed that the more I pay attention to the cycles of the world around me, the more my own life naturally flows in harmony with the seasons. Just as if some big, unexplainable wave has picked me up and is carrying me, life takes on the ease of floating downstream instead of fighting the current: fall brings endings and opportunities to let go of what I no longer need; winter brings introspection, and spring, new beginnings.

This time of year, when the natural world is growing, flowering and producing lavishly, there’s an easy abundance to life. Things seem to pop into manifestation with little effort. In my classes, this is the time of year I like to give attention to prosperity and abundant living.

This connection between seasonal cycles and personal life may seem like a stretch to many, especially if our human experience bears no resemblance to the outer world. When we’re out of synch, we’re likely to fall sick in the fall/winter months from our inability to let go and flow with change. We become depressed in the dark seasons from our failure to access the inner light of inspiration. Then we don’t have the energy to begin new ventures in spring, and summer finds us in scarcity rather than abundance. A way back to an easier harmony with life is to study the season that best matches our current out-of-synch experience and learn from it.

So, should summer find you in a place of scarcity rather than abundance, much can be learned through studying the sparseness of winter. This empty, barren phase of nature is a concentrating time when energy pulls in and pulls back, in order to gain momentum for the next burst of growth.

In times of financial or other scarcity, we often start worrying, panicking and withholding, which only sows seeds of more scarcity. Because many of us have learned to connect financial prosperity with such large issues as well-being, self-worth, and even survival, when our money supply is threatened we tend to feel threatened in all these other areas as well. We may become so wrapped up in our feelings of fear and powerlessness that we don’t even see how many practical options we have for making less money more manageable. So, an important first step in times of scarcity is to address our state of mind, because action taken from a place of anxiety and weakness is bound to create more of the same.

In the natural world, scarcity doesn’t last indefinitely. A season serves its purpose and evolves into something else. As soon as we begin to think of our experience of scarcity as a “season” we’ve defined it as temporary, and thereby given it permission to evolve into something else. Times of scarcity often precede big jumps forward. Consider how a bow and arrow works: the pulling back creates the force that propels it forward. Similarly, taking a few steps back builds momentum for a big, running jump. How we work with the leaner times in life has a lot to do with what we allow to happen next. They can be very potent launching pads for prosperity and abundant growth if we recognize them as such. The following are some suggestions for making the most of your seasons of financial scarcity.

Dream. As in winter, times of financial scarcity are good times for envisioning what you want to do with more money and with your life in general. Imagine this to be like pouring through gardening catalogues in winter. Just as you have faith that seasons change, feel the same certainty that this financial season will change. Let your dreaming fill you with pleasant anticipation for what the next growing season will bring and use this time to turn within (think of hibernating in winter) instead of externalizing your energy through spending.

Clean house, materially and emotionally. Lighten up. Let go of the past and what you no longer need. Make room, literally and symbolically, for the coming growth and prosperity.

Practice Mindful Spending. Become conscious of how you flow money. Let the lack of excess help you get clear about what’s really important and spend only on that. Try this: all this month, every time you spend even a cent, ask yourself: “Is this expenditure taking my life in the direction I want it to go? Is it enhancing the quality of my life, prospering someone I would like to see prosper or supporting something I believe in?” If not, rethink spending your money in that way.

Become, out of necessity, a good steward of your money, using it in the highest way. This will make you magnetic to more and will also teach you how to wisely use more. This lesson in wise spending may be just the preparation you need to attract a significantly larger flow of money into your life.

Find ways to enjoy life that don’t require money. Become aware of any ways you’ve become dependent upon money for recreation, self-nurturing, self-esteem or socialization. What you create, experience, and how you stretch when the easy crutch of money is taken away may be a big part of why you unconsciously called this season of scarcity into your life.


As you honor this “winter” phase in your life, don’t forget to appreciate the abundance of the natural world. The beauty of summer can be enjoyed for free. Give thanks for the blessings in your life and then, in the coming months of fall, allow something old and unnecessary to die away so that winter can fill you with new inspiration. As you let the wheel of the seasons carry you forward in this way you may be amazed at the abundant life you’ve created by the time next summer rolls around.

Seasons of the Self | June

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This month of June is all about the light. The lightest weeks of the year [for those in the Northern Hemisphere] fall in this month, leading up to and following the summer solstice, in the third week of June. It’s hard not to feel the energy of it. Just as the dark of winter leaves some depressed and listless, this time of year is more likely to result in restless energy and sleeplessness as sunlight streams into our bedrooms earlier and earlier each morning.

In homage to this month of light, this article, too, is all about the light. Light: so pure and primal it’s perhaps one of our most-used metaphors. It stands for clarity, goodness, spirituality, and salvation from all things dark and frightening. Light is life-giving and divine. From the world of science, we know that light, energy and matter are all variations of the same. As quantum science demonstrates that most of reality goes on at a level imperceptible to our human senses, it’s also showing the very underpinnings of the universe to consist of a field of light.

In the seventies, the highly distinguished physicist, Hal Puthoff, pioneered study into the mysteries of this energy field, called the Zero Point Field, and has since been followed by many others. The Zero Point Field essentially is the energy left in a space when all possible matter and energy are removed. This remaining field comprises, literally, a super-charged, sea-of-light backdrop to everything and physicists have theorized that if we learn how to tap it, it could become a limitless energy supply, meeting all our current needs, even enabling Star Trek-like space travel. As well-known physicist, Richard Feynman put it, “the energy in a single cubic meter of space is enough to boil all the oceans of the world.”

As physicists are working to explain and tap this incredible ocean of light, another very different glimpse into the light comes from the growing body of research on those who’ve had near-death experiences. Consistently, people who have clinically died and been revived tell a similar story of coming into contact with a mystical light. These experiences are profoundly transforming, leaving the survivors forever changed, with a measurably higher zest for life than the general population, healthier, and more apt to have psychic abilities.

Could it be that the cessation of life as we know it in a physical body allowed these individuals to have a perceptual awareness of the Zero Point Field and tap into its unlimited power? And is there something we can learn from their experience to help us tap this energy without physical trauma? Perhaps a key lies in another consistency to their stories: invariably they describe “the Light” as being synonymous with unconditional love. The mystical light that people experience is far from cold or neutral. Rather, it’s powerfully benevolent. Much like what religions of the world have called “God.”

Science writer and author of The Field Lynne McTaggarthinted at this benevolent nature of the universe in the summation of her excellent compilation of cutting edge science. She suggests that new scientific thinking promises to give us back our optimism as we realize that we aren’t simply alone in an indifferent universe. “Far from destroying God,” she says, “science for the first time was proving His existence…”

Scientists are working on machines to extract energy from the Zero Point Field, but with this blurring of lines between science and mysticism, might there be a more common-place path into the Field—one more accessible to all of us—through mystical experience and unconditional love?

In a paradoxical illustration of spiritual law, I often cite Mother Theresa as a role model when I teach classes on prosperity. Paradoxical because Mother Theresa lived such a simple life among the poor and we tend to remember her for her unconditional giving, not her materialistic “getting.” However, Mother Theresa was amazingly good at manifesting material resources. Accounts of her life are filled with stories of last-minute saves where the support she needed to continue her humble work show up, often in serendipitous and miraculous ways. Her counsel to the rich was, “give until it hurts” and, for her, they did.

Yet, her priorities and attention remained on caring for the poorest of the poor rather than on how to get what she needed. Just as she manifested easily without it becoming her focus, I believe she gave easily without having to work at it either. As she once put it herself, “When you know how much God is in love with you, then you can only live your life radiating that love.” She lived in an awareness of God’s love that so filled her to overflowing, all she could do was share it. Consequently, she wasn’t focused on giving or getting. She was simply living in the fullness of God, which heightened her abilities to both give and attract.

If, as near-death accounts suggest, unconditional love is synonymous with the sea-of-light underpinnings of the universe, and if what religion calls God has some corollary in the Zero Point Field, could it be that Mother Theresa discovered what physicists haven’t: how to tap the limitless power of the Field? And might her simple statement be the way? “When you know how much God is in love with you” (when you’re cognizant of the benevolent sea of unconditional love/light and your Oneness with it), “then you can only live your life radiating that love” (then, in other words, you quite naturally tap the unlimited potential of this sea-of-light Field).

By Mother Theresa’s wisdom, access to the Light begins with “knowing” it—and what better time of year to know the light than now, in this light-filled month of June? Consider giving yourself a special moment—the closer to the solstice the better—out-of-doors, not just to work, play, or sunbathe in the light, but to recognize your Oneness with it. Let the sun’s light be a physical representation of the sea-of-light Field holding us all in its embrace of unconditional love. Name it according to your beliefs: God, the Light, the Field, and let its regenerative powers wash over you, healing your body, calming your mind, heightening your zest for life and restoring your faith in a benevolent Universe.

May | Reaching for the Sun

This month of mid-spring is all about growing: light, warmth and vegetation are all on the rise. The essence of May can be captured in the image of plants reaching toward the sun at the stage just before they tumble over, pulled down by the weight of their own abundant growth. In the seasons’ never-ending interplay of light and dark, now is when light is most on the rise. Not at its peak, which comes next month with the summer solstice, but growing stronger every day. As a personal metaphor for growth, May embodies the energy, aliveness and passion of reaching for the heavens and pursuing our dreams. So, if there’s something you’ve wanted to do but never seem to find the time or energy for it, now’s the time!

Spring flowers

However, passion alone isn’t enough to bring our dreams to life. What makes the difference between exuberant, undirected bursts of energy and productive manifestation is will. Passion without will is like a tomato plant that’s left to grow like a weed without a stake. There may be tomatoes but they’re all on the ground rotting and buggy.

Will is our power to get the job done, to put dreams into action and make our creativity truly productive. It’s not to be confused with self-discipline which is the force we need to exert to keep ourselves doing what we don’t really want to do. Self-discipline becomes necessary when we’re acting on what we believe we should do rather than what our heart wants. It’s fueled by our fear and we act because we’re afraid of what will happen if we don’t.

By contrast, will is fueled by love. It’s the energy we put behind things we’re passionate about. When we’re pursuing our dreams, we may experience challenges or feel resistance but the energy to push through comes more readily. We handle the boring chores and obstacles of life easily when they’re steps toward our heart-felt desires.

While the energy of willpower in service to our dreams is easier to call up than self-discipline toward those things we have no passion for, will still needs to be developed. It’s like a muscle: if we don’t exercise it, it becomes weak. When we seldom use our will, it’s not there when we need it, much the same as when we seldom exercise our bodies and find even the simplest exertion leaving us breathless.


Three Aspects of Will

I think of will as having three distinct and equally important components. The first is courage. Courage includes obvious acts of heroism and bold action in the face of real or perceived danger, but it comes into play in more subtle ways as well. Any new venture requires a step beyond what we know and, consequently, a step out of our comfort zone. For example, if you haven’t exercised in twenty years, going to the gym for the first time can be a courageous act.

The second aspect of will is strength. This is the willingness to work hard at something, draw upon all our resources and apply ourselves fully. No matter how much courage it took to join the gym, that’s not enough! We need to actually get on the equipment and give it our best, until we’ve applied all our physical strength and emotional fortitude.

Last, but far from least, comes commitment. This is where, after courageously joining the gym and working out ferociously, we come back and do it again. And again, and again…. Commitment is the willingness to follow through on our intentions and act with consistency, even when it’s become a little boring, because we know it’s in service to our highest aspirations. Commitment lacks the high energy of applying strength and the adrenalin rush of courage but without it, the tremendous energy expenditure of the first two can wind up being for nothing.

Most of us are better at one of these than the others, and we may be comfortable with applying all three in certain contexts. A firefighter who exhibits obvious courage in his job may quiver in fear when it comes to taking emotional risks. People who are excellent at keeping their commitments to others may not be able to summons the energy to keep the ones they make to themselves. The more we develop an over-reliance on comfortable strengths, the more we limit ourselves and become weak.

Just as will becomes weak when not used, the good news is that we can grow it stronger with practice. So, if you have a special dream, why not make now the time to grow it? Offer a small effort and let the energy of the season carry you higher. To get you started, here are some calisthenics for the will:

Calisthenics for Developing Willpower

Identify your most passionate goal and think of one step you could take toward it that would push you out of your comfort zone, requiring some courage. Next, think of something you could do in service to this goal that would test your strength and take some real effort on your part. And finally, think of one small action toward furthering your dream that you’re willing to do every day for a month in a committed way.

Now, of course, it’s time to get moving! If this goal is truly something dear to your heart, considering taking this challenge and discover for yourself how far passion and will combined can take you.

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The Spring Equinox, the official beginning of spring, happened in the third month of March, marking the point where, for the first time in six months, light and darkness are equal. We’ve entered the season where light is on the rise, growing stronger every day, and it can’t help but touch us all and get our energy moving, even if we don’t consider ourselves terribly attuned to nature, even if we never garden, even if it’s still Minnesota-cold out (as it is where I live). When light is rising, we know it in our bones. At the very least, we find we don’t need our Seasonal Affective Disorder lamps as often and notice our houseplants going wild. Every year this time, the presence of light awakens us in any number of obvious as well as deep, primal ways.

Of course, the true rebirth of light happened at the winter solstice, the darkest day of the year. Yet, winter light is a quiet power, both dormant and pregnant, like the time after conception but before birth. Spring, on the other hand, is for “hatching.” Easter brings with it a riot of candy eggs, baby animals, and Jesus rising from the dead, as Christian symbolism blends with earlier, earth-based, traditions of the solar sun being on the rise.

This energy of birth and beginnings is exciting, fresh, and a bit fragile. There’s an openness and child-like innocence to it; a sense of the world being new and that anything is possible. What better time to consciously cultivate this energy of excitement, fresh perspective, and willing suspension of disbelief, not as a naive first step on the way to a painful crash, but as a creative force? What better time to open ourselves to miracles?

If the pure presence of spring isn’t enough to open your jaded mind to the possibility of miracles, try wading into some of the mind-boggling findings of relativity theory and quantum physics over the last century. Science is now showing us a remarkable new definition of reality in which time and space aren’t fixed, matter isn’t solid and the very nature of matter changes according to the expectations of those observing it. We’re seeing that consciousness in and of itself has the power to affect the physical realm and that minds are joined beyond the limits of time and space. To quote one of the pioneers of quantum physics, Erwin Schrodinger, on the nature of consciousness, “the overall number of minds is just one.” (A good starter book on new science is Taking the Quantum Leap, by Fred Alan Wolf.)

But this article isn’t just about the mysteries of time, space and matter. It’s an opportunity to explore and experience these mysteries first hand. It’s an invitation to suspend disbelief, allow your mind to be boggled and take a leap out of the box of what you think you know because what follows is an exercise in miracle-making.

Going back to Erwin Schrodinger’s idea of “One Mind” and combining that with mounting evidence of the mind’s power to affect matter (on this, check out physicist Helmut Schmidt’s research with random events generators, for starters), and then throwing in what we’re beginning to know about the fluidity of time and space (thank you, Einstein), take a little leap of imagination and consider that, simply through your intention to do so, you could connect with every other mind who has read, is reading, or will read this article. Imagine that, beyond the illusionary limitations of time and space, together we could (perhaps have already?) form a powerful, synergistic force of Mind capable of moving proverbial mountains of matter. (Why not? It’s been documented that prayer said anonymously, sight unseen, on another’s behalf has a statistically relevant, positive impact on physical health. Check out the book, Healing Words, by Larry Dossey, M.D. for more on this.)

So, if you’re still with me, stop for a moment and really imagine this. Envision your mind joining with the minds of all who have read, are reading and will read this article. Imagine us joining in a common intent that every reader now experiences something miraculous this month. (What’s “miraculous?” I think of it as something better than we expected, perhaps didn’t believe to be possible, always win/win, and often showing up through serendipity rather than effort.) As your mind follows along here, already you’ve become more than a passive reader—you’ve entered the process and begun to reshape matter, starting a healing ripple for yourself and countless others you will never know.

Picture this joined consciousness as clear, beautiful, and only positive—an ocean of pure potential having the power to do great good and incapable of doing harm. Imagine that beyond time and space we’ve formed a synergistic, only-for-good, creative force, ready to be directed. You can add your own mind power to this in any way your imagination might suggest: aim a beam of light from your heart to this collective pool and see it grow brighter; hold a heart-felt intention that these many others who you’ll never know now receive whatever highest good best serves them; or simply think and say this to yourself. Imagine you believe this is true even if you don’t. The power of our consciousness magnifies whatever we give consistent attention to so simply holding in mind an imagined reality is akin to planting a seed. Bringing it to mind repeatedly provides the sun and water that nurture its growth.

Now, all that’s left is to have faith. Faith means expecting success and seeing signs of it everywhere and in everything. It’s not a matter of hoping and wishing, which keeps our attention focused on something that isn’t here yet. “Faith” is when we’re so certain the future will unfold perfectly, we feel no need to be attached to it at all. Consequently, faith keeps us very present and at peace in the moment. Once we’ve stopped trying to worry the future into being, the miraculous present happens, with grace and serendipity.

So, instead of looking for signs of your success, which is tinged with an attitude of prove-it-to-me doubt, this month practice finding signs of success. It’s a little like being on an Easter egg hunt. You know without any doubt the eggs are out there. Some may be so obvious you’ll practically step on them, while some you might have to peek behind bushes and rocks to uncover. Play lightly with the possibility of miracles this month and see what shows up when you least expect it!

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March | Light Exceeds Darkness

Welcome to spring! The Spring Equinox, which happens around the third week in March, marks the point at which the darkness of winter finally gives way to the light of the warmer months. Then, every day for the next six months, light exceeds darkness. As the world around us goes through this dramatic shift of focus from dark to light, we can’t help but feel it.

Just as the dark depth of winter urges us to hibernate and turn our attention inward, with the event of spring we start to “wake up,” come out of ourselves, and think about planting new seeds (literally and metaphorically). In my home state of Minnesota and other northerly regions, March can be a bit of a tease. The light brings on dreams of warmth and growth while the weather is just as likely to be burying us in the biggest snow drifts of the year.

This month of March—too early, in many places, to get started on the garden—is the perfect time for the important work of taking stock of what we’ve grown over the past year. This step is important whether it relates to our personal growth or the vegetables we grew last year. If we don’t stop and reflect, we’re likely to create the same thing over and over again, whether we like it or not.


This step is also crucial because what we give attention to we tend to grow bigger. Consciousness is a powerful force. Simply by holding something in mind we give it creative attention. Even physicists are realizing that experiment results have a way of reflecting the scientist’s expectations. Seeing “the glass half-empty or half full” isn’t just an overused definition of optimism and pessimism. It’s a powerfully creative act. The more we focus on the “half empty glass,” the more likely we are to drain the half glass we started with down to nothing. The opposite holds equally true and reviewing the growth we’ve accomplished in the past amplifies our power to experience accomplishment in the future, just as dismissing how far we’ve come keeps us perpetually in a state of having a long way to go.

As you take stock of the last year of your life, is it easy to see an abundance of positive growth, successes, and forward movement? If so, your next step is easy. Instead of focusing on the hurdles you imagine lie ahead, consider what your life might look like in another year of as much growth. Remember how you envisioned your future a year ago. Were there blessings and leaps forward that you didn’t expect? If so, imagine the coming year filled with at least as many surprising turns for the better. Don’t try to plan or guess what these will be. Just let yourself feel excited at the thought of how much you’re likely to accomplish based on how much you’ve achieved this year.

What if you look back and don’t see much positive growth? Or worse, if it looks like you’ve taken a few steps backwards? First and foremost, know that the interpretation you give to your experience is a creative act and has a tremendous impact on what you create next. So if you feel that you’ve just stood still over the last year, consider that perhaps you’ve stood still the way plants “stand still.” Have you ever watched a plant grow? You can stare at it all day and not see much happening but that doesn’t mean it’s not growing. Meaningful growth sometimes requires time to develop in a way that’s strong and lasting.

Even dramatic change that comes quickly sometimes requires time for us to see it. I’ve witnessed any number of people release physical illnesses spontaneously through spiritual work. One was a woman who had attended some of my spiritual healing services. She shared that she had become free of a chronic asthmatic condition she’d struggled with all her life without realizing it for many months. It wasn’t until she became aware, one day, of being in an environment that would typically have provoked an attack that she realized she not only felt fine, but she hadn’t had an attack in ages. She didn’t notice the absence of her illness until it was long gone. Sometimes our expectations about how change happens won’t let us accept or trust a change that happens too quickly or too easily and our minds need time to grow into the change we’ve already made.

OK, so, maybe you can’t relate to the “plant growth” metaphor and really believe your life has been stuck in a pit of stalled movement. There’s still a bigger picture to be seen here that can provide momentum rather than inertia for your next season of growth. Imagine all the ways that standing still is a powerful part of moving forward. Think of a seed lying dormant underground during the winter months, or a caterpillar motionless in its chrysalis. A seed growing in the wrong season would stand no chance of survival and a half-formed butterfly emerging too soon would never fly. Even though you may never see the bigger picture of why, consider that your “still” time was simply not the right season for forward momentum. In the absence of visible change, ask what have you been incubating under the surface, out of sight? Keep asking until you get an answer. There is one.


And if you think you’ve taken a step backward in your growth, consider how even backward movement can be a step in the right direction. Think of an archer pulling backward on a bow to create the momentum needed to propel an arrow, or a jumper taking steps backward before leaping. Think of how pruning a plant creates more lush growth. I remember a time when the harder I worked, the more my business fell apart. I felt like a miserable failure whose talents were minimal and unwanted. It was a horrible time of life. I would never choose to repeat it. But, in retrospect, I would never want to have skipped it because I’m not sure anything less dramatic would have gotten me to change directions and find the much different and better path that allowed me to excel and succeed. (It also taught me to be more flexible so I haven’t again needed to be beaten down so thoroughly before I change my course!)

Even the worst failures, losses, lapses, and emotional or physical break-downs provide opportunities. They enable us—sometimes force us—to develop new priorities, grow new strengths, and to find our buried vulnerability, tenderness, and receptivity.

All this allows rigid patterns of living and thinking to crumble so something more alive can grow. As you appreciate the importance of what’s fallen apart and acknowledge the things you’ve accomplished, you cultivate fertile ground for your next growing season.

The Miracles Course | Spring: Growing Our Heart’s Desires

Audit the first online class of the Miracles Course Spring Quarter for free:

The spring quarter of the Miracles Course is the season for cultivating passionate zest for life as well as accomplishing some of the heavy lifting of personal mastery: clarifying intention, developing will, breaking disempowering habits and awakening intuition—all of which creates the foundation for the more advanced manifesting work of summer.


Wednesday, March 8, 7 PM Central Time.

Attend on your computer or by phone.


 The Miracles Course

Everyone deserves a miraculous life. Isn’t it your turn?


Miracles aren’t hard work.

The Miracles Course works simply by showing up.

 Now accepting students for the Spring Quarter beginning March 1st.

Classes begin March 8th. We recommend enrolling before this date to allow for orientation time. Late registration ends March 15.



Tuition Discounts and Payment Plans Available. See below for details.


What fuels the Miracles Course:


  • A team of three professionals, with coaching, teaching, healing, and intuitive skills, who care about you. We know that miracles are for everyone and we are willing to invest time in you so that you experience this yourself.


  • The tremendous advantage of group spiritual work. The Miracles Course is a community and shifts happen far more quickly and powerfully when we work together. Things that have been difficult to accomplish alone can fall into place effortlessly with the amplifying effect of group energy and unconditional love.


  • A circular, seasonal curriculum that engages your subconscious mind in an archetypal journey mirroring the growing cycles of nature. Whether you use this program as a transformative immersion experience or as an ongoing touch stone for staying on track, your life begins to flow as harmoniously as the seasons. Transformational changes, new opportunities, successes, prosperity, improved relationships, and healing of all sorts start to unfold with ease and serendipity instead of effort.



The Miracles Course is more than an educational program. It’s the miraculous power of unconditional love in action. We look forward to being in community and in transformation with you!

Enroll in The Miracles Course here

February: The Hidden Gifts of Love

In the wintry month of February we’re still in the season of hibernation, introspection and energy turned inward.While the candy-heart overlay of Valentine’s Day certainly is a cultural rather than seasonal phenomenon, it’s well-suited for late winter. After all, when the weather and still-short days drive us indoors, we tend to find ourselves in close quarters with our fellow humans. And when our attention turns within, there we are with our own hearts. Love and relatedness bloom, or we become acutely aware of their lack. Sadly, or fortunately, depending on your perspective, a scarcity of love is more a state of mind than of opportunity.

I became profoundly aware of the connection between love, healing, and attitude, as well as the incredible capacity for any two people to give and receive the gift of healing love, in my work with the attitudinal healing movement. In 1983 I started a Center for Attitudinal Healing, modeled after the original Center founded by Jerry Jampolsky, for people dealing with life-challenging illnesses. Rather than using professional counselors, we paired clients with volunteers who’d received training in how to listen compassionately, see everyone as a teacher, and define healing as a process of joining in love with others rather than fixing them. The healing that resulted between these volunteers and clients was miraculous and deeply moving.

Not only did these nonprofessionals seemed to know just the right thing to do or say when coming from a place of love, the traditional roles of helper and client quickly disappeared and the learning and healing flowed both ways.

That we are all students and teachers to one another is a foundation principle of the Attitudinal Healing movement and, in my experience, a fundamental truth. It’s one that doesn’t require the high intensity of catastrophic illness to manifest. It’s our true relationship to one another at all times, though we’re often blind to it. Everyone we encounter has something to offer us and the more we seek it out, the more we’ll find it. Believing in the goodness and wisdom of others helps to call it forth, even from those who didn’t know they had it to give.

But even if we appreciate this notion in theory, we may still go through life thinking only certain people have the love, support, approval, wisdom and gifts that we need and that others are unattractive, annoying, invisible, or have nothing we want. This is what makes life lonely.

To bridge the gap between theory and experience, here’s an imagination game I occasionally do in my classes. Imagination is the doorway into intuition, so what starts out as something we’re just “making up” can sometimes evolve into profound truth. Whether you believe you’re in some way transcending time, distance, and separateness to connect with the highest wisdom of another, or simply connecting with a wiser part of yourself, you may find unexpected insight through this exercise and it can’t help but change how you look at people which, in turn, has a way of changing what happens between you.

Begin by bringing to mind someone whom you think of as a wise teacher. This could be a person you know or someone you only know through their work, such as an author, world leader or historical figure. It could be someone either living or dead.

Now, picture the person in your mind’s eye and take a moment to simply open your heart. Imagine you’re sending an outpouring of gratitude for all that you admire and appreciate in this individual. The power of love is well documented. It keeps us healthy; it empowers our prayers; it’s a gift that, when given unconditionally, is always received, even when it’s not registered consciously. Imagine that your love is awakening and calling forth the best in this person.

Many philosophers and cutting-edge scientists have speculated that all minds are part of one consciousness. So, even though you’re not physically present with this individual and may never be, imagine there is, none the less, a reality where all minds meet. Picture yourself visiting with your teacher and imagine that a real meeting is taking place in this realm of pure consciousness. Your mentor may speak to you, or show you something, or simply radiate love and healing.

You might imagine yourself in the role of your teacher,seeing yourself from this other’s view. In this role, speak to yourself. Offer wisdom, healing and whatever gifts are most needed. If you have a request for specific assistance or a question, ask for these and allow the teacher to respond.

But this isn’t the end of this exercise. While it’s easy to imagine a favorite mentor as having the gifts we most need, the truth is that everyone is a being of profound complexity, wisdom, and depth with gifts to give. That includes our friends, family, coworkers, complete strangers, even the people who thoroughly annoy us. So, bring to mind now your most intimate peer relationship. This could be a spouse or romantic partner, or it could be a close friend. Repeat the previous exercise, this time letting your intimate peer come to you. See past the person you’ve become so familiar with to perceive the rich, complex being that includes but isn’t limited to the personality you know. Imagine this individual as having facets you’ve never seen, and wisdom and love you’ve never experienced. See what new gifts this person has to give you when you open your mind and heart to them.

Now that you’re warmed up, do this exercise one more time—this time with the last person you’d ever imagine as having “gifts” for you. Just as with your mentor and peer, imagine this being has important wisdom, guidance, healing and love for you. And just as you did with the other two, let yourself open to receive it. Bring to mind the most important question of your life, perhaps one you posed to your mentor. Imagine that the higher mind of this person has something significant to contribute to this matter; something you would have missed had you not opened yourself to it. See what it is and don’t be surprised to receive an unexpectedly different view with a new perspective worth considering. End by thanking this person for their gifts.

If you do these exercises deeply, you may see changes in how people relate to you. You may never be able to look at people quite the same way again and, before you know it, you might even notice your world has become a lot less lonely.