Choose Hope, You Matter
Revolution of the Spirit: Touching Heaven, Healing Earth
Author: Dr. Craig Schindler
Quotes from Martin Luther King, Jr. and Jane Goodall
This call for worldwide fellowship that lifts neighborly concern beyond one's tribe, race, class, and nation is in reality a call for an all-embracing love.. This often-misinterpreted concept has now become an absolute necessity for (our) survival.
When I speak of love, I am speaking of that force which all the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of life. Love is the key that unlocks the door that leads to ultimate reality. This Hindu-Moslem-Christian-Jewish-Buddhist belief about ultimate reality is beautifully summed up in the First Epistle of St. John: ‘Let us love one another ... for God is love.'
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
All around the world there is an awakening of understanding and compassion…that reaches out to help the suffering animals in their vanishing homelands; that embraces hungry, sick, and desperate human beings…And if, one by one, we help them… then together we shall alleviate so much of the hunger, fear, and pain in the world. Together we can bring change to the world, gradually replacing fear and hatred with compassion and love. Love for all living beings.
The Book Revolution of the Spirit - Touching Heaven, Healing Earth is a roadmap for the revolution of the spirit. It outlines the Soulforce Practice based upon both our enduring wisdom and emerging neuroscience. It offers methods to transform self and humanity and to live the global ethic -- treating self, others and the Earth with the respect you want to be treated. Neuroscientists have established that whatever we do with regularity creates new pathways in our brain. Thus by practicing what we want to become, we can evolve ourselves with intention toward the increased mindfulness, empathy and compassionate leadership needed to transform self and world. Many studies show that the practices of mindfulness and centering prayer, altruism and kindness, meditation and gratitude - contribute to elevating our experience of wellbeing, happiness, and true fulfillment. The book is a call to live your higher purpose for a more compassionate self and world.
Dr. Craig Schindler’s book, REVOLUTION OF THE SPIRIT - Touching Heaven, Healing Earth: The Call To Live Your Higher Purpose For A More Compassionate Self & World. The book is a roadmap for the journey of our transformation. Drawing from humanity’s great wisdom traditions and our emerging science, it describes the five stages of the soul’s journey to enlightened wisdom: 1) The CALL – Awakening To Higher Purpose: pathways of transformation – to awaken from the trance and embody our higher The human-caused threats to life compel us now to make an evolutionary leap of personal & global consciousness; 2) The QUEST – Embracing Our Transformation: Humanity’s great souls teach us purpose; 3) The COURAGE - Facing The Dark Night: Having courage to face the dark night of humanity’s soul is essential to our transformation and to living the mountaintop vision; 4) The WISDOM – Becoming A Light For The Dawn We are called to be the conscious change to heal our world by realizing the inner light & honoring self, others & Earth 5) The DAWN – We Are The Gathering Light: Let us ignite the Great Transformation to restore Earth & create peace by passing the flame of mindfulness, compassion and stewardship across our world. The call is to become a light in the darkness, affirming with our lives the coming dawn.
Dear friends -
In the dark night
When I fear for the world
I think of you the friends and family of the Earth
of your love and caring for the beauty of it all.
I hear the songbirds at first light
calling us to awaken for the coming dawn:
for the children, for hope, and for the Earth.
Let us celebrate and take heart at every step
toward compassion, human dignity
and stewardship spreading across our world:
You and I and all people of goodwill weaving
together the Beloved Community to heal the Earth.
We are the Gathering Light of love and respect:
For all humanity and all life.
Let us sing the song of the soul
Let us let Heaven Touch Earth through us
Let us be a light for the coming dawn.
Dr. Craig F. Schindler
Excerpts From Revolution of the Spirit
The Parable Of The Village
Once there was a village known for its kindness and joy. People of different races and religions lived together in peace. Many came from far away to find healing and renewal. Its places of worship were filled with joyful music. But over time the villagers forgot their wisdom and got caught up in selfishness and greed. They exploited the land and the nourishing rains stopped and the fertile fields began to wither. Fear and violence became commonplace. Their places of worship grew silent, and visitors stopped coming to nourish their spirit. The villagers went about their days with heavy hearts. The elders of the village were gravely concerned. They had heard of a wise teacher who meditated in a cave in the mountains. So they decided to visit the sage to seek help.
Upon arriving, the sage opened her eyes from meditation and asked the elders kindly: "What is it you seek?"
The elders told about the pain of their village and asked: "Is it because of some sin of ours that the village has been reduced to its sorry condition?"
"Yes," replied the teacher, "a sin of ignorance."
"And what is that sin?" asked the elders.
"One of your villagers is the blessed one in disguise and you are ignorant of this,” declared the woman of wisdom.
On the journey back the elders' hearts were quickened by the thought that the blessed one was living in their village. Many questions flooded their minds. How had they failed to recognize him or her? And who could it be? The cook? The merchant? The carpenter? No, it couldn't be any of them because they all had flaws.
Yet, the sage had said the blessed one was in disguise. Perhaps these defects were part of the disguise. Indeed, everyone in the village was imperfect - yet one of them had to be the blessed one. Back in the village, the elders called the people together and told them what they had discovered. The people looked at one another in shock: The blessed one? Here? Unbelievable. Some villagers grew angry at the absurdity of this idea. Others simply ignored the insight and continued to live as before. But some realized that if the blessed one was in disguise, it was likely they would not recognize him or her. First a few and then many more of the villagers began to treat one another with respect and kindness. After a while most of the villagers began to feel happier: "You never know," they said to themselves as they saw each other, "maybe he or she – the farmer, the baker, or the grandmother - is the blessed one”
And then the elders began to observe the ripple effect. They noticed that when enough of the villagers treated each other with loving respect – something strange happened: Even those who had been resistant or indifferent began to recognize the difference. They too grudgingly at first, and then with more awareness that it was in their own self-interest, began to treat others with respect and kindness.
The village again became vibrant with a spirit of love and celebration. Almost all the villagers now treated each other with respect. They nurtured the Earth and the rains returned and their lands flourished. Of course all conflicts did not disappear but now they listened to their differences and resolved their disputes with fairness. Again their places of worship resounded with joyful music and many people came from afar to find spiritual renewal. Villages from far and wide came to realize that just as it happened here, it could happen anywhere. The message spread across the land: "Live with love and respect and you will come to see the blessed one in disguise.”
In many wisdom traditions there are stories like this parable of the village: In Christianity, there are parables about seeing the Christ in the humblest of people – the orphan, the old woman, the beggar; In Buddhism these stories are about recognizing the Buddha-nature in all sentient beings; In Judaism about honoring the spark of the Holy in each soul; in Islam about seeing the face of Allah in all creatures; in Hinduism about awakening to the Divine in each being; and in native traditions about honoring the Great Spirit in all creatures. Whatever the particular tradition, the essence of the insight is the same: if you treat each person (including yourself) as the blessed one, you will create a beloved community in your life. As Jesus put it: “Whatever you do to the humblest of my brothers and sisters, you have done unto me”
Our world today is much like the troubled village. Each of us is born a blessed one behind our differences in race and creed. Yet often we fall asleep to our true nature and we live in a deep trance. We focus only on our surface masks and do not recognize the timeless soul within oneself and others. When we are treated harshly as children, we learn to treat others (and self) with harshness. When we are treated like an object, we learn to objectify others and all life. Thus we perpetuate a cycle of wounding and violence, greed and injustice, and environmental exploitation.
The Big Tent
The call is inclusive: to gather in the Big Tent: People of all faiths and races are needed to help create this Great Transformation. Too often in the past, the "tents" under which we come together have been exclusive. We welcomed only those who looked like us or believed like us. Those who were different we treated as “heathen.” Inside the exclusive tent, we could express acceptance and love, but outside we rejected others and often projected our unclaimed shadow of fear and hatred. Now we are called to gather in “the Big Tent"– a worldwide Rising that includes people of all races, religions and cultures coming together. “This call for world-wide fellowship … beyond one’s tribe, race, class, and nation is in reality a call for an all-embracing love ... now an absolute necessity for our survival,” Dr. King said. “(T)hat force which all the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of life.”
Tipping Point – Ten Percent Living The Transformation
This book is addressed to the ten percent of us needed to live the transformation. Imagine, as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, that ten percent of us – Americans and all humanity -- choose to embody the inward change in the quality of our soul and the outward change in the quantity of our compassionate actions required to advance the Beloved Community. Just so, when a certain percentage of people on Earth of all races and creeds recognize that every child is a blessed one in disguise – and indeed that the spark of the Infinite is within us – we will reach the tipping point where enough of us are living the transformation, that a quantum jump becomes possible.
IN physics there is a concept that when enough atoms are excited to a certain point they will reach “critical mass.” The scientists of the Manhattan Project used this principle to develop the first atom bomb, proving that by exciting enough plutonium atoms, they could set off a nuclear chain reaction and the first atomic explosion. Similarly, Malcolm Gladwell in his best-selling book The Tipping Point describes “that magic moment when an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses the threshold and spreads like wildfire.” Studies of “tipping points” and “trim tab factors” show that a small percentage of people can alter the world and influence millions to join them. Scientists at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute recently found that when the number of adopters of an innovation, new product, or idea is below ten percent, the rate of change is barely visible, but “once that number grows above ten percent, the idea spreads like a flame.” So it is with the revolution of the human spirit. One by one, person-by-person, we can pass the flame, until there is a critical mass of individuals who have awakened to the realization that each of us is a conscious being and part of the interwoven web of life on Earth, and therefore our survival depends upon the diversity and health of the whole. Thus by living the change we want for our world we can achieve critical mass.
The Emerging Worldwide Rising
In his book, Blessed Unrest: How the Largest Movement In the World Came Into Being And Why No One Saw It, Paul Hawken, environmentalist, entrepreneur and author documents more than 1.5 million organizations dedicated to defending the environment, protecting indigenous peoples or advancing human rights. We don’t yet recognize this vast meta-movement, he says, and mostly it does not get the spotlight of the media - because it is decentralized. It has no fixed organization or ideology, yet in response to our global crisis it is growing rapidly in local areas around the world. In addition to Paul Hawken’s list, there are a multitude of other groups around our planet seeking to reduce suffering and strengthen peace: the numerous faith communities dedicated to love and compassion – churches, synagogues, temples, mosques; all those working for social justice, reconciliation and lasting peace; the human potential, mindfulness, and inner peace movements; the organic food, health and wellness movements; and the numerous groups teaching mediation and conflict resolution.
We are in the early stages of an uprising of the human spirit. Tens of millions of us realize that the future of our children and grandchildren is at stake. We sense that we need a personal and global awakening of epic proportions: We are part of an unprecedented convergence of all the movements that have sought to advance human rights and social justice, environmental protection and sustainability, health and wellbeing, mindfulness and spiritual growth, wisdom and compassionate love. Since Gandhi there have been more than 40 successful nonviolent revolutions in which millions of ordinary citizens stood up to topple dictators, overcome oppression and advance human rights, as well as the rapid rise of the environmental movement. Around the world, protestors are now using cell phones and Internet to stand up for their rights
The worldwide Rising to remake our world is already underway: Yet it needs us, the ten percent, to step up and to spread the vision of the coming dawn. This meta-movement needs us to facilitate dialogue and listening, empathy and understanding and thus to help spark the coming together of the many movements. At the core of all these movements is our global ethic taught by our great wisdom traditions – to live with respect toward oneself, others, and the Earth. This book is a call to step forward and do your unique part to help kindle “the largest movement in history” – to embody the reality that we can transform our lives and remake our world. In the pages ahead, we will see how our wisdom and science offer pathways to transform both self and humanity – the revolution of the human spirit that is already stirring and yet needs to be actualized in our lives and spread by each of us. Like a torch, we can pass it from person to person, group to group, so the flame of compassion lights up our world.
Beyond The Absolutist Mind
The major world religions have shaped and dominated the debate about the meaning of life for more than three millennia and the nfluence they have on their followers continues to be very strong. Religion claims the allegiance of three-fourths of the Earth’s population. So if there is to be a revolution in the human spirit that can save the flesh, our great faiths must play a critical role. Many will see an irony in looking to our world religions for answers about the threats to our future because religious extremists have helped to incite much of the conflict that threatens to engulf our planet. The very traditions that have given us great insight about how to live together peacefully have also been used to fostered violence and war because of conflicting interpretations of what they believe to be ultimate truth.
"The most dangerous aspect of religion is what we will call “the absolutist mind.” This is the mindset that says: “Our religion, our tribe, our nation is the only way.” Those who see the world with an absolutist mind are not open to learning from other points of view. The absolutist mindset is based in fear and intolerance, not in love and compassion: it sees those who believe differently as “ infidels” who must be converted or conquered. In a world where conflicts can quickly escalate toward global catastrophe, this way of thinking is vastly more dangerous than ever before.
The recent criticism of religion is largely in response to the hatred and violence incited by religious extremists. Critics have argued that if we are to survive, humanity must move beyond religion entirely. Yet on the other hand, it is imperative that we not lose sight of the “great dream” of healing the world taught by our spiritual traditions. While absolutist religion fosters self-righteous exclusivity, the authentic wisdom that comes from religion is inclusive and has inspired many to affirm with their lives that compassion is more powerful than hatred, and that love and justice will prevail.
Of course, the absolutist mindset is not confined to religion. There are many secular atheist ideologies that have dehumanized others. Tens of millions were killed during the 20th Century because of totalitarian regimes that asserted they had the absolute truth: Communism, Nazism, Fascism, authoritarianism, apartheid, neo-Nazism – and the dictators they spawned - Hitler, Stalin Mussolini, Idi Amin, Pot Pol, and others. The absolutist mindset is dangerous in any form - secular or religious.
For our great religions to help create the transformation we need, we must move beyond the absolutist mind and focus on the insights at the heart of all the faiths that teach us how to live together in peace. Thus the call is not to change your faith, but rather to fully live the love and wisdom of your own tradition. And if you have no particular faith, the call is to live the essence of humanity’s global wisdom. If we are to ignite humanity’s awakening, millions of us – Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, native peoples, agnostics and all people of good will - must seek to embody the compassionate ethic of our diverse traditions. Whether we are successful may determine the quality of humanity’s future, if any, we are able to create on Earth.
The Practice Of Being A Light
"Every act of kindness, every effort toward reconciliation, every moment of inner peace, every act of forgiveness, every initiative to bridge races and religions, every step to reduce global warming, every action to advance justice and reduce suffering, every effort to preserve other species and restore the Earth, every celebration of joy, every intention to cultivate love, every expression of beauty, every prayer for peace — every victory of the human spirit! With each small step toward greater wisdom and compassion, we fuel the revolution of the spirit and pass the flame to create a better world for future generations."
-- Dr. Craig F. Schindler, Revolution Of The Spirit