|Posted on October 9, 2010 at 10:34 PM||comments (0)|
There's an old saying from the Talmud that every blade of grass has an angel watching over it constantly whispering, GROW, GROW, GROW... If that's true about Grass, what must be true about us?
Eric Butterworth in his book, Spiritual Economics wrote, Life is fundamentally a matter of growing, a growth experience. Missing the mark is one of the ways in which we learn to hit the target. Failure is a vital part of achieving success. We have erroneously thought of success as "getting there" while actually success is "earning the right to be there." And earning means learning. Setbacks, even failures, may be an important part of that learning.
If you are reading this message, it is because you are interested in growing spiritually.
I've heard many people say that their spiritual growth was a private matter - and I've often bristled when I heard them say that. I used to think it was just because I was in the business of doing Church and if they thought they could do it alone, I'd be out of a job...
But, the deeper I come to understand spiritual growth, the more I realize that the measure of that growth is my increasing ability to relate...and ultimately to know that I am always relating to Myself and to God/Source - because indeed it is all ONE and the same. I meditate on that concept almost daily - and I realize that I'm still not completely there. So, today I thought I'd focus on a model of Growth that talks about the stages we go through in getting to that place of Knowing all is ONE.
A number of years ago, I heard an excellent explanation of 4 stages of spiritual growth, or the four kingdoms of development and unfoldment by the Rev. Dr. Michael Beckwith from the Agape International Center of Truth in CA and Marsha Sutton and Lloyd Strom, authors of several spiritual growth programs.
Today I invite us all to ask where are you on this Spiritual Journey?
The stages are summarized by the words: To me By Me Through Me As Me
Most of us are quite familiar with the 1st stage. This is the stage of the victim where something outside of us is doing something to us. It could be God outside of us, the devil, superstition, the day we were born, the numerological chart, the cracks on the ground, our parents (in 80's became the new devil...) Our parents did it to us and then our mates... It could be as simple as the weather. We are victim to whatever we believe is causing something in our lives other than ourselves.
Then somewhere along the line we discover, either through pain or through insight - those are the two ways we grow - we begin to understand that we are a part of something that is bigger than ourselves, that is orderly, it's a universe - That something wonderful happens and it operates lawfully. At this level we become manifestors or manipulators. This is the manifest or manipulate stage. This is stage two where we learn about the law and how we use it and oftentimes what happens in this stage - we learn that there is a Law in the Universe. That things don't just happen - they happen Just - they happen according to what's passing through your awareness - -what's passing through your subjective.
This is often called the NAME IT AND CLAIM IT stage. If you can name it and claim it, you can have it. This is the stage where we learn about visualization, If you can see it with your mind's eye; you can feel that it is done, you can have it. You can just see it with a certain level of insight, you can make it happen in your life. This is the stage where you MAKE IT HAPPEN. (Movies and books like the Law of Attraction and The Secret are teaching us to master this stage.)
So, at stage 2 - you make it happen and then you move to stage three where you make it welcome.
And then finally there's Stage four- This is the stage of ultimate relatedness. This is the stage of KNOWING our ONENESS -the MYSTICAL stage which is a stage of being, a sense of at one ment with the presence of God where you realize there is no difference nor is there any separation between this one life - there is only the Life of God.
We have to master one stage before moving to the next. And then, we live moving in and out of these stages. For today, just notice where you are. More to follow.
And so, I would like to offer a support system for getting and keeping clear in your life. When you subscribe to my free Women Reinvent Midlife newsletter, you'll even receive a special report called, "7 Secrets for Reinventing Midlife from the Inside-Out". You can get your copy right now at http://www.reinventmidlife.com
From Dr. Toni LaMotta, Midlife Reinvention Specialist and Spiritual Life Clarity Coach