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The Character of Living Your Dreams

 

Let me get straight to the point here. The most overlooked aspect of being a powerful creator is also the very thing that will lead you to the most brilliant end results in life, outcomes so great they are beyond anything you could have imagined. Quite simply, I’m talking about character.

I’m very grateful to the late great author Herman Hesse for concentrating on this theme so heavily in his books. And what I mean by character is the adherence to a set of self consciously formulated values.

A regular trawl through your Facebook news feed will give you a good snapshot of what the collective consciousness assumes it’s all about and how we should be going about fulfilling whatever it’s supposedly about. There’s the usual suspects consistently agreed upon – forgiveness, gratitude, be in the Now – and a confusion of others, like have goals…or don’t have goals because they are a limitation.

I myself see the truth in almost all the principles that people hold up, even when they conflict. Being in the Now cuts out the Ego’s tendency to resolve your sense of limitation, which neutralizes the projection of your unconscious beliefs on to life. Forgiveness and gratitude also take you out of a limited, often negative life perspective. Opening the mind allows us to make connections between things and see possibilities we haven’t seen before. We move from being victims of circumstance to being powerful creators wielding the benefit of choice.

But being open minded or open hearted or being at peace with however it is or wherever you are is not the same as transforming your life. It’s not the same as experiencing a whole level of life beyond what your assumptions and expectations have confined you to. To do that you have to subscribe to the value of following your truth.

It’s one thing to come to your heart, another thing all together to follow it. Having worked intimately with thousands of people on their creative process, I can tell you that many do not appreciate that in the peace they create for themselves there is a calling to be attended to. And even when they hear that calling, they kid themselves that it is optional or that it can wait till they are more ready. People follow their truth mostly when it is convenient, when it doesn’t confront them too much.

For those without creative character procrastination and losing oneself in activities inessential to core purpose are acceptable. Not to someone who holds the value of being committed to their truth, though. Someone with creative character will always know their truth by virtue of being open to it, and they will follow through. And because of that characteristic they will be carried further and further from the confines of their conditioned reality, making an ever greater contribution and receiving ever greater rewards in terms of freedom, joy and abundance, which for others is mostly a cliche.

I know this so well from my own experience. A calling to come to America made so little sense to me, and even less to my wife and kids. All we could see was that we were trading a perfectly good life for one of alienation and dubious prospects. It’s not a move we had to make. We were doing great, thank you. We could have done it later or told ourselves we were happy where we were. But it was our truth. So we moved to Los Angeles, the most soulless place in the world according to those colluding in our dread of leaving Byron Bay, Australia.

Only once we got here did it make sense. Only by being here did we see how receptive this country is to my work, how much they love my books. We could not have foreseen the great contacts I have made and the great projects I am embarking on. Nor that overnight, as a result of coming to the US, opportunities around the whole world would be opened up and that I would receive offers to work with some of the most amazing people in my field. It’s incredible to think that I’m now on the Evolutionary Business Council and that I have been invited to speak at the UN in October at the People of Distinction’s Humanitarian awards. And we are very pleasantly surprised to find LA does have a soul.

Some people call this way of life magic because it seems as though we created something out of nothing. Maybe some times that’s true. Mostly, though, we are just lead to something we couldn’t see rationally. And until you adopt the value of heading the call of the non rational you wont be lead to much more than you’ve always known.

Think For Yourself and Grow Rich

It might be quite dated now, but a movie that had a profound effect on me was American Gigilo, especially the following scene…Cop: how can you do what you do? Gigilo: some people are above the law. Cop: these people that are above the law, how do they know? Gigilo: they ask themselves.

Another movie that affected me similarly was Cider House Rules, where one of the characters reads a list of restrictions posted in an itinerant workers’ dormitory and comments: “who ever made these rules doesn’t live here.”

Both of these scenes relate to a very fundamental principle of creativity. From an early age we are conditioned to believe that there are rules for everything and that the person who can best learn the rules and follow them the best has the best chance of coping in life. Yet if we mean to experience magic in our lives, by which I mean elevated end results in all areas of our life, then we need to start breaking the rules.

I don’t mean that we should become anti establishment rebels; that’s just a reaction to the rules which keeps the focus on the rules, anyway. But if you look at the levels of creativity, the lower levels include imitation and derivative while the higher levels include invention and innovation. Invention and innovation happen when people begin to go outside the boundaries and rules of convention.

Creativity, by definition, is a state in which we make connections that haven’t been made before and see fresh possibilities. I like to use Andy Warhol as an example, how he looked at a can of baked beans and (while everyone else saw nothing other than a gaseous staple food) he saw a work of art, now worth millions! The higher the level of creativity, the more exalted and rewarding are the connections and possibilities.

And here’s the thing. Creativity occurs when we start defying the rules we believe govern everything. When we know by referring to ourselves, that is when we are in touch with the most appropriate values, appreciate what suits us best and what leads to the highest good. There is no formula or recipe that covers directly who you are, your situation and your best alternative in each moment. Hence the relevance of that line, “whoever made these rules doesn’t live here.”

This is why Farid udin Attar, most exalted of Sufi poets said, “if someone asks you how to do something, tell them to forget everything they ever did before.” He might have added, “and everything they ever learned, too.”

It was Einstein who famously remarked that imagination is far more important than knowledge. What you know once you have let go of all your concepts, that is the key to living life for fun and profit…to borrow from a famous magician.

Attracting More Money

How do I Attract More Money!

By William Whitecloud

Everywhere I go in the US, it seems, everyone is talking about money, and rhetorically asking what the hell they have to do to get some. Well, that kind of desperate focus is a sure way to repel the stuff, I assure you! When it comes to being set financially it helps to get a little more creative than worrying and trying hard. Here are some tips from my Secrets of Natural Success philosophy on getting set to open a flow of abundance in your life.

In a hundred radio shows I’ve done lately, caller after caller says to me: “I’m the same as everybody else, I’m trying to get a job. I’m doing what I’ve been taught. I’m imagining the end result, and I’m feeling the feeling of having that job. But nothing is happening.”

There are a few assumptions in these statements that reveal a lot about the true focus of those sharing them. One is that they’re “the same as EVERYONE”…NO ONE can get a job! Wrong, 10% of people don’t have a job (which isn’t even the same as saying they can’t get a job.) But here’s the doozy, the assumption that the power is outside of me, specifically in my circumstances. I rely on something that someone else has to provide. When they’re providing, I have; when they’re not providing, I have not.

Everyone seems to have learned that your focus creates your reality, so everyone thinks that by wishing for a job they should automatically have financial security. What they haven’t been taught is that our underlying assumptions reveal what our true focus is. The statements I offer in the paragraph above reveal that the underlying assumptions are that I am powerless, i.e. “I rely on what is outside of me for my viability, when it’s bad out there it’s bad for me.” And more insidious, “There are no jobs out there. I’m the same as EVERYONE, NO ONE can get a job!” Those are the unconscious messages, the true focus, what the caller is really telling me and, worse, them self. No doubt if they uttered a few more sentences they would reveal more negative assumptions.

If we mean to be powerful creators in our lives we have to begin assuming that the power is in us, that we have the power to attract our own viability, our own abundance. As such, we have to stop thinking about HOW we will get what we want and start Thinking about WHAT we want. People don’t want a job! Most people hate their jobs, anyway. We want to be able to thrive in life. That is WHAT we want! And that is what we have to start focusing on.

When we start focusing on the real end result we give our subconscious a whole new message: we are powerful; the possibility of us thriving is unlimited, not dependent on some negative condition. Now our imagination is freed up to find pathways to us having what we love, and finding that in accordance with what suits our own unique talents and natures. This sets up inspiration, not desperation.

Inspiration is the prime mover of manifestation. And it’s something that can be self consciously set up when you stop assuming that you don’t have your end result in you. And open up to receiving what you love in different ways than you think is THE way.

Open up to this insight and 2013 will turn out to be your Year of Abundance!! Guaranteed.

“Natural Success” by William Whitecloud

TAP INTO YOUR GENIUS: You may know that I wrote Australia’s #1 best selling metaphysical book, The Magician’s Way. What you may not appreciate is that I made half a million dollars in book sales and many millions of dollars from trainings that people who read the book were then attracted to. I knew nothing about writing or publishing before I wrote The Magician’s Way. But what I did have was a powerful technique for tapping into my own genius, that part of you and me that transcends all limitation and super-consciously conceives sublime creations. Now I have written a new book, The Last Shaman, already being acclaimed by thought leaders around the world as one of the most significant consciousness books of our time! This book will now INEVITABLY take me to a whole new level of success. The key to organic, authentic, sustainable success in life is TAPPING INTO YOUR GENIUS. I am passionate about using my creative spirit to magically uplift my life and the lives of others. Now I’m on a mission to train people all over the world in the creative technology I live and breath. I’m starting in London at the end of March and Los Angeles in the middle of April. If you’d love success to be a natural part of your life then join me at one of my upcoming events or visit www.williamwhitecloud.com and check out the resources that can connect you with your own genius (while there you can alsoopt into my free newsletter for alerts of upcoming events in your neck of the woods.) Magic be with you :)

“William’s Inspiring Outlook for 2013″ by William Whitecloud

The year 2103 is going to be all about a new level of power for many a magician, I really believe that. For those of us who can use the shake up of 2012 to appreciate the structures that remain for us to let go of, a flow towards an even higher potential than we ever dreamed of is in store for us. Living from our hearts, our greatness, will be such a wonderful and joy-filled experience – like being on drugs, in the sense of that awe at waking up to an amazingly heightened experience of life.

There is also no doubt in my mind that a lot of this transcendent shift in consciousness is a spontaneous function of the collective consciousness, outside of our individual control and design. We’re riding a wave of evolutionary advancement, an awakening to our higher nature and potential, which is really a deeper realization of the Divine nature of the Universe and our inherent connection to and involvement in that. In one sense it’s a quickening. I hope you don’t mind me comparing you and me to monkeys for a minute (it’s actually a real compliment), but this is very much to do with the 100th monkey effect. Scientists observing monkeys on an archipelago of islands found that when a certain number of monkeys (obviously around 100 or so) learned a new skill on one island, all the monkeys on the other islands spontaneously acquired the skill. So as more and more people explore the nature and possibility of human consciousness through everything from yoga and meditation to energetic healing, psychic development and creating our own reality, the more the energy released by this focus is made available to one and all us monkeys…er, humans, I mean.

At the same time, as many of us found out in 2012, if you’re not taking personal responsibility for keeping in alignment with the rising planetary vibration, then you can expect some uncomfortable dissonance, to say the least. The psychic shocks that  you experienced over the last year of the Mayan calendar were not created by random bombardments from aliens in outer space, but by the aspects of your identity that are now too far out of tune with our Collective Leading Vibration to carry on slipping by under the radar. These old beliefs, behaviors and patterns are, as they say, sticking out like dogs’ balls, waiting to to be chewed off. And I know I took a few bites there, I can tell you…even the occasional baseball bat!

So this is a year for sublime growth, and a year to practice being self consciously involved in that soul emergence. It’s time to take the trouble to see, and even to learn to see, what we’re investing our energy in. and whether that’s supporting our ideas of separation and limitation or our free spirited passion and contribution in life. The more we are going to use our will in steering ourselves along the path of our highest potential and destiny, the more we will luxuriate in being in harmony with the higher planetary vibration…and the more profoundly the higher planetary vibration will relate to us. It’s a symbiotic relationship, a cosmic synergy exercise. And a good year for magicians, if you use Colin Wilson’s definition of magic, which is to live your life guided by your intuition, your soul mode of awareness.

Self conscious participation is key, though. Sitting on the beach in my home town of Byron Bay you see the most magnificent surfing waves rolling in, but to experience the thrill of riding one of these beautiful barrels on a board or even with your body, you have to catch it by paddling along with it until it scoops you into it’s momentum. Otherwise the wave just swells past you or crashes down on you. And that’s the secret right there: practice self awareness and right action and forces much bigger than you can comprehend will sweep you up into the life of your dreams.

Dearly Beloved, may you surf your way to your dreams and beyond in 2013.

“Musings on the Nature of Wisdom” by Willow Davies

Spirituality has become mainstream. Bumper stickers now caution us to “live in the moment”; magazines tell us to “live our wholeness”; teachers everywhere are touting “do what you love”; Confucius is urging us to buy the next mobile phone, and facebook proliferates with “inspirational quotes” telling us how we should be living our lives. This is not a bad thing, in my opinion – it reflects a shift in consciousness, a global reaching towards something larger than ourselves, an opening into other ways of connecting with who we really are and an opportunity for our human expression to reach greater heights. But it’s also an issue when spirituality and self-exploration become a kind of snack food – when we grab a bit of bite-sized pop-wisdom at the drive through because we are too lazy or too busy to eat a nourishing meal of true inspiration.

The thing I’m learning about wisdom is that is can come from anywhere – any religion, science or doctrine has truth in it, but wisdom is different to learning. Learning is found all over the place, and we are trained in it from an early age through our schooling system, which teaches us to take on facts, memorize things, and repeat them in a rote way to get the good marks. Learning requires very little engagement from the student – it’s as simple as the ability to remember and regurgitate – it is essentially uncreative, because there is no need for the student to involve themselves in the process, and as long as they can store things in memory little else is required.

Wisdom is different. It is not gained by rote repetition of things we have heard out there in the world. Wisdom is a process of the individual connecting with the learning, filtering it through their own consciousness, receiving it into their being, and finally embodying it. It’s a journey. It takes time, and usually, it takes pain. The greatest lessons I have learned in my life have come through or around the times of my greatest challenge, the times when I was confronted with my own narrow-mindedness and invited to step beyond it into something larger.  Wisdom doesn’t end. It’s not like you understand something and then it is done. Wisdom is not static. Knowledge is static, because once you have memorized something you have it and can repeat it. But this does not mean you have really received it. Great wisdom requires a continually open mind – one that is prepared to be wrong, one that is prepared to accept that everything you have been certain of up until now can shift and change and become unrecognizable and yet retain the same essence of truth that was there from the beginning.

Wisdom is like a dance partner – it’s like a marriage – it’s an interaction. The minute you think you know it, the minute you think you have it all sorted, right then, if you look, wisdom will already be changing, already leading you somewhere else, already tempting you to explore another aspect of yourself and itself. Wisdom is the willingness to learn, the willingness to be open, the willingness to lead and be lead. When the dance stops, when things become still and static and certainty and sureness step in, there truth dies, and doctrine steps in. Spirituality then becomes nothing more than a series of rules, things one should be, right and wrong pathways to follow – it becomes a bunch of pat answers, an excuse to judge oneself and others or be on a high horse.

The greatest enemy of wisdom is separation. Arrogance is a form of separation, but so is too much humility. Wisdom is found only in an open, honest and direct connection with truth – in the willingness to be lead a merry dance through life, and find a thousand times that we do not know.

In the last year and half I have had everything I thought I knew questioned. Certainty is something that I desire greatly, as I have a deep insecurity inside me that calls to find something I can cling to – knowing makes me feel safe in an uncertain world. So I have fought this process. I have held on to what I thought was right and tried to prove it’s veracity. Nonetheless I have been broken down – my structures have died – the things I thought I wanted have shown up empty – the ideas I clung to have not protected me as I hoped they would. This has been a terrifying process. But now I have bare ground. I have an inner world that is rich in possibility because it is not made up of rote sayings and pat answers, but is a journey that unfolds daily, step by step. This is an incredibly fulfilling place to live, and a very vulnerable one.

So I come to this: to be wise we must burn. Like a bushfire that ravages the forest, but brings new life in its wake, like the phoenix that burns itself away so that it may be reborn – so is wisdom. It is not something that can be attained, but like the fairy lights of old mythology, something that is chased down, grasped, and then flickers and twists out of one’s grasp so that we must chase it down again. New life comes from the dying of the old.

There is a story that used to be enacted in the goddess rites, wherein the new king would dress himself in antlers and hunt down the old king and kill him, so that the new king might be crowned. Then, in time, his turn would come to be hunted down and killed. This myth expresses the truth that to find wisdom we must burn our old structures down, we must be prepared to surrender what we know to something deeper, older, more fluid and be enriched by it. We must be both new king and old, dying and being reborn, moment to moment.

William had said it to me often: we must be idiots of god. The symbol of knowledge is an over full cup, into which no new elixir can be poured. We must empty our cups, that they may be filled again and again and again. When we fill our cups with snack food wisdom, there is no space for the truth to visit us. How many times have you heard “just be in the moment”, or “go for what you love”, or “that ailment you have means this about you”? Repetition breeds contempt and rote learning is no kind of learning at all – after all, a parrot can be taught to say “live in the now”, but it does not make the bird a wise man.

“The only way to get rid of anima is to bore her. In this case she manifests herself as absence, as loss of soul in the dead mechanical language of theorists who are bent on defining and categorizing what cannot be treated in this way.”

Patrick Harpur

Shamanism was defined to me recently as simply the capacity to interpret the voices of nature. To hear the truth in the song of the rippling wind, the roar and tumble of waves on the beach, the trickle-ickle of a forest stream. And if the voice of nature, then why not every voice? If there is wisdom in a blade of grass, then why not also the simple truth of a child – the didactic teaching of a guru – and the confused ravings of a madman? Wisdom is not contained in the words – it is not the province of language. Wisdom is more likely simply the tuning of our own instrument – making ourselves sensitive enough to be able to receive – to really hear.

I think there are many ways to wisdom, many ways to find our truth – it is not the pathway that is important, but the capacity to receive, to be with – to go deep. Go deeply into anything and you will find truth, to my mind. Whether that be some spiritual wisdom, a religion, a vocation, or your sexuality – if you dive in, open enough to let it touch you, deep enough to be revealed to yourself, you cannot help but be transformed. And what is wisdom but simply the capacity to continually be moved, continually transformed, continually uplifted?

So if you would be wise, my advice to you is simply this: don’t stop. Don’t ever think that you have arrived. Be open. And Go Deep.

“Metaphysical Myth #2: Will is Bad” by William Whitecloud

If you have ever had the privilege to see into your own or another’s soul, you will know that we are all brilliant beyond measure and that we came here to shine like diamonds. When we do so, we not only uplift whatever world we are a part of, we also feel the thrill of being totally alive, what Joseph Campbell referred to as living our bliss. Yet, anyone with the true power to appreciate human greatness will also know that we fear our light. Former US President Bill Clinton, who gets paid up 20 million dollars for a speech, says that to this day he is still filled with terror before he goes on stage.

The fact of the matter is that we all came here with a special gift to contribute to the amazing weave of life, and as such we have a unique nature possessed of special talents and abilities that serve us in fulfilling our purpose. This is what I call our Greatness, and some like Mother Teresa or Nelson Mandela call our Light. And it is also true that we are all wounded in relation to our Greatness. Our egoic belief system is formed around beliefs that we are not viable being and expressing exactly who we are. Our egoic orientation in life, then, becomes about manufacturing what we unconsciously perceive to be a more socially acceptable identity. Of all the misconceptions we are subject to in life, this is the most disempowering of them all.

From personal experience and working closely with thousands of people over twenty years, I have been able to confirm time and time again that it is only when a person claims their true nature and purpose that they begin to manifest their dreams and  experience their bliss. In my own case I always had a block around expressing my knowledge. Yet when I finally overcame this block enough to write my first book, The Magician’s Way, it connected me with my deep joy of writing. In practical terms I have made millions of dollars from a combination of book sales and the successful seminar business that the book promoted. As for making a contribution, imagine how satisfying it is when teenagers write to me and tell me that they wanted to kill themselves and that since reading my book they are once again back on track with their lives, or couples confide what a nightmare their relationships were and how they are now smooth sailing again.

The thing is, it takes Will to live your bliss. Like Bill Clinton, each of us have deep seated fears about being and doing what we were born to be and do. We may long for life to be a certain way, to take a certain path, but beginning to head in that direction brings up tensions, even pain. We feel bad for doing something for ourselves, maybe we feel incapable, or believe that we will starve in a profession where only a few succeed and many fail. The dragons vigilantly guarding the treasure of our true nature and purpose are as varied and unique as our own spirit. Most people, often even those that we admire as go-getters, are operating in a way that steers them clear of tension and pain. Yet the truly spiritual person, the creator, the warrior, the magician, they use their Will to hang out with the pain that says they can’t be true to themselves, and thereby are able to stand being in their Greatness, that inner territory out of which their genius and bliss arises.

There is a big alliance of pseudo-spiritual and personal development models in the world that hold that Will is bad, and that peace and abundance will flow from not imposing your Will in life. This fallacy is born of a number of short sighted conclusions, chief among them the observation that when we go for things in life it creates conflict, often with others and invariably within ourselves. And yes, when we give up on going for those things the tension eases. I wish I had a hundred dollars for every time I heard someone say, “I knew it was the right decision to give up on such and such, because now that I’m not going for it I feel a whole lot better.”

If feelings, especially good feelings, were the standard of measurement for how good life is or how true we are being to ourselves then these anti-will models would be valid and I myself would instantly abandon my will. But the thing is that our feelings, especially the heavily charged ones like shame, anger, fear, depression, frustration, emptiness, etc, are not reflections of reality as most people believe. Rather, they are personal reflections of limitation. Our negative emotions are merely telling us what beliefs we are holding about how we can’t have what we want in life.

By not using your Will in life to choose and go for things, you damn yourself in two ways. Firstly, you will not live your Greatness, only the pale shadow that is the identity you believed you had to assume for your survival.  Secondly, you have no potential for real and meaningful growth in life. The weak and the misguided believe that emotional stability is the aim of life. As such they will never see the self imposed limitations they are bound by, or more important even, go beyond them.

Will is not good or bad – it just is. Will is the mechanism by which we assign the power in our consciousness. There’s always a voice controlling us through our thoughts and feelings, telling us that who we really are can’t occupy the world we live in. And, at the same time, there’s a another voice crying out for us to unleash our true contribution. It’s all too easy to rationalize, especially with “spiritual” justifications, heeding the nay sayer within us. It is a much more vulnerable option to drop our protective concepts and follow our hearts. To say that it is also the more rewarding choice is a massive understatement. When you know the difference, you realize the one is drowning and the other is swimming. Thanks for that one, too, Joseph Campbell.

“Warning – Over-identification with Pure Thoughts can be Harmful to your Health” by William Whitecloud

Today I was greeted by a Facebook post cheerfully proclaiming that we can’t expect to create any good in our lives unless our minds are spotlessly clean of negative thoughts. I can’t tell you how that makes me groan with dismay at the ignorance of such a proposition. Not just because of the pure untruth of the concept, but also because I know it causes people the pain and futility of trying to be or become something they are not.

Of course these paens to positive thinking are based on the supposition that our thoughts create our reality, which is a bastardization of the Alchemical premise that this concept draws on. If one is going to actually apply these principles in real life, it is useful to be clear about what the original premise states, which is that our subconscious (the feminine/creative aspect of mind) creates our reality. According to the principles of Mental Creation, the subconscious receives messages from our selfconscious, superconscious and unconscious and then crafts those messages into our life experience. If you only know this much, then naturally you are going to come to a frightening conclusion: “Shit, the subconscious takes the messages it is given and converts those into my experience of life. If I want a good life I mustn’t let any bad messages through.”

It actually doesn’t work like that. First of all, do you think that you can hide negative thoughts from your subconscious in some mental cellar. As Wayne Dyer once said, having a smoking section in a restaurant is like asking people to piss only in one section of a swimming pool. The subconscious isn’t a compartment in your brain that can be sequestered from the rest of your consciousness. The whole point is that it observes everything going on in your consciousness. Even you suppressing (consciously shutting off) or repressing (unconsciously shutting off) your thoughts and feelings.

Secondly, the subconscious doesn’t create everything it observes. Let’s face it, with everything going on in any of our minds, life would be sheer pandemonium if that was the case. And besides, there are many conflicting messages from the different aspects of consciousness. Our dreams, desires, hopes and choices are countered by fears and uncertainties, conscious or otherwise.

It is actually possible to physically demonstrate that the subconscious concludes which message has the power and then draws that conclusion into reality. So thoughts and feelings don’t create anything…until they’re given the power. And what should the subconscious decide about thoughts and feelings it sees us frantically stuffing away for fear that they will have power over us?

Even a Buddhist monk will tell you that all you have to do with thoughts and feelings is just notice them. What you observe is neutralized, but what you act on is energized.

A magician will go further and tell you to embrace all that is in your consciousness. Own it. The good, the bad, the ugly. Then you are centered in wholeness, and from there you can actively choose what message in your consciousness you want to have the power. You can put your will into what you love. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, that’s a positive use of mind.

“The Greatest Secret of Alchemy” by William Whitecloud

I have always been attracted to the premises of Alchemy, because to me they offer the most compelling and empowering model for living life in an exalted way, where the highest truth of who I am is evident and my deepest passions and creative energies are expressed. In other words, Alchemy is a sublime model for living from Greatness. And the way that Alchemy sees Greatness (as, indeed, it sees everything) is as a vibration. According to Alchemy, to experience or live from Greatness one must rest on the vibration of Greatness. On the African Soul Safari I just completed I was gifted with many insights into the principles of Alchemy, but the insight that trumped all insights was a profound understanding of human nature and how that understanding can be used to keep ourselves grounded in our most empowered life perspective.

The next time you have a conflict (internal or external) or a problem or an unwanted situation or a reaction to anyone or anything just notice that the perception of that experience is conveyed to you through heavy (leaden) thoughts and feelings. Also notice how you not only are subject to those thoughts and feelings but that you actually identify with them, which means that you relate to them so personally that at some level you believe them to actually be you. It is startling to realize that you believe you are indivisible from your emotional and mental processes, which are merely reflections of your beliefs and assumptions. But when you understand this phenomenon it suddenly makes sense why people will go to war against fellow human beings who merely believe something other than what they do. When our beliefs are challenged, at some level we feel our personal existence is threatened. That’s how strongly we identify with thoughts and feelings!

Those who have seen beyond the veil of human illusion know that we are not our thoughts and feelings or the beliefs and assumptions they front. As tangible as they may seem, those things are all temporary and arbitrary. What is permanent and lasting about us is our Spirit. We are Pure Creative Spirit connected to everything through all time and space. Though, to be here and have an experience of individual existence we need a vehicle. That’s what our Ego is. Often people think of our rational mind or belief system as being our Ego, but in fact our Ego is the whole vehicle, including our physical, mental and emotional bodies.

Being in a physical body gives us a vehicle to get about in, but that still doesn’t give us a unique, individual sense of existence. The perception of us being separate from everything else outside our bodies is created by definition. From the time we are conceived and begin to form in the womb we begin to have experiences, and from those experiences we begin to make up beliefs about ourselves, others and the world. In essence a belief amounts to a definition either about self, others or the world. If someone, for instance, believes that they are not safe, that means something about them, other people and the world. And so it is for all beliefs.

With every definition you hold (and you hold gazillions of them) you de-animate and objectify the world around you. The more thoroughly this dynamic is in place, the more separate you feel from everything else. This is born out by the fact that so called “primitive” people feel much more connection to the world and are thereby much more in tune with it. They don’t assume to have everything pegged and labeled in the way we “civilized” people do, so by virtue of their innocence they are not so separate. This is what William Blake had against mechanistic science, that it defined and separated, defined and separated, till everything in the world felt to him like lifeless pieces of butchered meat. To give people a sense of the effect of definition, I often in my classes will throw a white board marker on the floor and begin describing it and the environment around it in more and more detail. Participants notice how more distinct and separate the object becomes with every added definition.

So here’s the clincher. When stuff happens in life, when you experience those apparent problems, conflicts, reactions or let downs, you feel depressed or angry or frustrated or afraid or sad or hurt or some such leaden emotion. Those emotions and the thinking that accompanies them are reflecting to you your beliefs about life, they’re communicating your unconscious sense of separation from your power or worth or belonging or capability or inherent viability. They’re giving you a sense of separation which is what they’re designed to do. But at the same time they’re giving you a sense that that is who you are, as if you’re inherently devoid of power or unsafe or unworthy or whatever.

When you understand this dynamic you are suddenly free in almost the absolute sense of the word; you hold immeasurable power in your hands. Because now you know that these thoughts and feelings aren’t you, they are your vehicle! When you see your disposition (that being your mood or your attitude, your thoughts and feelings etc) for what it truly is – your vehicle – then something very magical occurs. Suddenly you are uncoupled from your illusion of separation, you no longer identify with it. Whatever charge accompanied your sense of separation is significantly diminished, but more than that, you are freed up to see things from the perspective of your Pure Creative Spirit. Like the “primitive” native, you are more connected and in tune with your soul self and the soul of the world around you.

As the Alchemists say, your experience of life is dictated by whatever vibration in your consciousness you rest on. The snag is, though, that you can’t willfully resist any vibration you’re on – that only focuses on it more, gives it more energy. The trick is non-identification. Stop fighting the illusion and just name it for what it is. Once you do, you can go anywhere you like. Don’t you remember the end of that movie, The Matrix, where the hero Neo says something like: “I know who you are and now I can go anywhere.” The matrix is a metaphor for the infinite web of definitions that create their corresponding illusions. Only by knowing the illusion to be an illusion, and knowing that it is your vehicle, can you move on from trying to fix it to using it to live your Greatness.

That’s the gift of Alchemy. It enables us to use our illusion, not be used by it. And it really is as simple as reminding yourself that your perception is not you, it’s just your vehicle. May that one take you very far…

“The Importance of Adventure” By William Whitecloud

There is a bitter-sweet feeling in my heart as I begin my homeward journey after five remarkable weeks on my African Soul Safari. On the one hand I am sad that the continuous flow of breathtaking adventures is coming to an end; on the other I am thrilled to be heading home to my loved ones and preparations for what is possibly going to be the greatest adventure of my life so far – moving to the USA  in November. There are many lessons I learned on safari, and some deep insights I gained that will hugely influence my work. I am very keen to share these insights and lessons with you over the next few weeks in my forthcoming blogs, but for now I just want to reflect on the importance and power of adventure.

Several of my companions on the Soul Safaris this year expressed at the beginning of the journeys how they did not know why they were coming along, that they just felt called. Many felt that it might all be a big mistake. The fear of the unknown was strong. Yet in the end each had the best time of their lives. Not only did they experience exponentially heightened wonder every day, they also learned the most valuable life lessons ever. And above all, they found their hearts.

In mythology we always find the hero in a comfortable place. The hobbits are sitting around cozy fireplaces with bulging stomachs after a good feast. It doesn’t make sense to leave that comfort to go into the wilderness and run the gauntlet of dragons, goblins, ogres and dark riders. Then again, the hero comes back from the adventure they originally resisted enriched beyond measure and never again contented by comfort and safety.

There are two forces within us that aid us in going beyond the strictures of our own complacency. One is the voice that calls us to adventure. It might nag us, or come to us as a fleeting fancy or an ever present dream. That voice is always there, whether we recognize it for what it is or not. It’s automatic. But the other force is not automatic, we have to self consciously engage it. I’m talking, of course, about the will to act on the call to adventure. In order for us to live our greatness and experience the brilliance of life, we have to foster our will.

Just yesterday I had one of many, many opportunities on safari to use my will to go beyond my comfort zone and have an experience so sublime I could not ever have imagined it, or come close to it had I not used my will to follow the call to adventure. One of the reasons we came to Mozambique at the end of the Soul Safari was so that we could scuba dive. In theory I was all for it. But then I learned that the dive was going to be on a reef in blue ocean water. I have an intense fear of sharks and normally am only happy to dive protected coral reefs. Then before we set out the wind was howling and it looked like it was going to bucket down with rain – the skies were oppressively grey. Going out in the boat it was so rough that half of my companions were vomiting over the sides. I was also nervous about the fact that I hadn’t dived in 5 years and I was concerned that I might screw up in the water. Watching the first group go into the opaque water and bob around like drift-bait while the dive instructor helped someone who chickened out get back in the boat didn’t do anything for my confidence. Every step of the way, from when I first heard about the dive location, all I saw was logical reasons for why it wasn’t a good idea to go down.
To cut a long story short, I stuck by my original intention to dive. As soon as I submerged beneath the frenzy of white-capped swells crashing into the dive boat all my fears and reservations were allayed. I was suddenly in a tranquil wonder world that was the opposite of everything that was going on above the surface. All around me were gardens of amazing coral and schools of incredibly beautiful fish. I felt no fear or discomfort, only wonder and joy. Seeing a shark, which had been my biggest concern, turned out to be an awesome experience. My only regret was that I couldn’t stay down in that oceanic fantasy world all day. Even when a beginner diver knocked my regulator out of my mouth 30 feet below the surface, my training came back to me in a flash and I carried calmly on with my dive, all my attention captivated by the magic around me.

Life is like that, I have found. If we just train ourselves to lend an ear to the voice that calls from outside our comfort zone, and especially if we develop the will to heed its call, we really do begin to experience life as a fantastic, magical journey, that once experienced you never want to go back to normal ever again.