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Your Unfolding Path
October 2001

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Carol's Current Column

by Carol Adrienne, Ph.D.

Carol Adrienne's work and teachings have been a great inspiration to me!  In August of 1998, about four months after my father passed away, I read about one of Carol's workshops in a Learning Annex catalog and synchronistically found her book on a bookshelf at the bookstore.  The themes of her teachings were familiar and comforting, as they confirmed the thoughts and ideas my father had shared with me shortly before his passing.  Her books and workshops ignited my spiritual curiosity, setting me on my soulful life path, which led to the very creation of SoulfulLiving.com!  Carol's participation has been an integral part of SoulfulLiving.com, at its soul level!  Thank you, Carol, with all my heart!
~Valerie, Founder and Soul, SoulfulLiving.com

Evolution At Work

Early in September, I was planning to write this month’s article about how intentions and beliefs attract matching outcomes. I was inspired by my friend Elizabeth Jenkins’ move to Hawaii from California. As some of you may know, Elizabeth is the author of Initiation: A Woman’s Spiritual Journey to the Heart of the Andes, and she founded the Wiraqocha Foundation to help support community projects for the Q’eros people of the Andes. In June she and her husband Barney with their two tiny children bought and moved to a house with an orchard on the southern portion of the island of Hawaii. Their new home is surrounded by five acres of avocado, macadamia nut, lime, and mango trees. Ten minutes away is a black sand beach with sea turtles. At the beginning of September, Elizabeth emailed me about how she was blending and freezing lime juice so that she could set up a little booth to sell fruit smoothies at a local Hula Festival. She and Barney are plunging into learning about the business of selling the fruit from their orchard, and they now expect to have a completely new livelihood straight from the earth. This new life is a drastic departure from the California suburban neighborhood in which they had been living.

I am not surprised that Elizabeth and her husband have attracted into their lives such abundance. For years she has participated in the Andean mystical rituals honoring Pachamama (as Peruvians call the Earth). Her intention to live in harmony with the Earth and her respect for the Great Mother is huge and unending. Barney, who in deciding to sell his successful office maintenance business, demonstrates an enthusiastic intention to take on the challenges of creating a new livelihood. Both of them express a clear intention to shed what is no longer viable and to reconnect with nature’s living energy. What we focus on does bear fruit.

Since September 11, most of us have increased our awareness of the gift of life--its beauty and fragility. In spite of shock, fear, anger, and disbelief--or because of it--many people notice that others are being kinder and more courteous to one another. People are talking about the importance of individual and collective decisions. Even though there is a higher element of fear (people deciding not to fly, for example), there is also less complacency--perhaps that’s a good thing.

Like everyone else, I want answers about how to change the world for the better and how I can do my part. But answers are slow to reveal themselves. The issues we face are like that old childhood game of pick-up-sticks, where moving one stick can topple several other fragile piles. We--the human species--are involved in an evolutionary process that has no assured outcome. Despite the uncertainty of the days and years ahead, our only viable choice is to continue to live our lives with positive intent, compassionate right action, a trust in ourselves and guidance from a Higher source of inspiration. Now, as ever, we must create quiet time for ourselves in order to listen within, despite the noise, fear, and chaos around us. It’s important not to over expose ourselves to negative images and feed the fear. Shock and trauma create a feeling of helplessness. Helplessness reveals where we are vulnerable, and shows us what’s at stake.

After trauma, grieving begins, and feelings are intensified. Time brings a search for answers and the necessity to heal. Now is the time to find ways to get involved, to help out, and to reconnect with what has meaning and value in our lives. Crisis focuses us quickly on what’s really important.

You and I can’t know what bigger scheme is at work in the world. We can only listen for what stands out in the messages we get from events, the media, from conversations with friends and strangers, and from our inner contemplation of events. What are you hearing? What makes sense to you? What stands out in recent events for you? Are you changing in any important ways?

What stood out for me in the last two weeks are the following ideas:

My Brother, My Self: An email circulated from Dr. Deepak Chopra was interesting. He said he went rigid with fear on the morning of September 11 when he received news about the hijacking and was uncertain about whether his wife and son were on those planes. After finding out they were safe, he asked himself why it was that he didn’t go rigid with fear when he heard about similar catastrophes in the Middle East.

Nothing Is Black Or White: Terrorism is indefensible, but world issues are rooted in complex historical pain. Agendas and motivations seem rational to every side. Only when enough people see the necessity to co-exist peacefully and help each other in real ways will things change.

Community Is Larger Than We Used To Think: The technology of communication, travel, media, Internet, and financial power has already erased many limitations of time and space, but has also revealed our vulnerabilities. No longer can we see violence as somebody else’s problem.

The Eye Test: Martin Luther King, Jr. said that the philosophy of an eye for an eye makes the world blind. The human addiction to violence as a means to solve problems is dysfunctional. The question is what exactly is an appropriate response to terrorism? Yes, we can strive to eradicate violence within our own nature individually. We can hold the intention to find the peaceful solution. But how many of us squash the mosquito when the irritation gets irritating enough? Dictators and tyrants have been squashed before, but have those victories ensured long-term peace? Apparently not. Perhaps we need to reconsider--at a deeper level-- the action of the Dalai Lama who fled Tibet rather than engage in violent retaliation with China. Despite his steadfast resolve to empower his country and reestablish sovereignty, he remains committed to nonviolence, teaches compassion, retains a sense of humor, and does not position himself as a victim.

Life Support, Not War: Personally I liked the email from someone who suggested we flood Afghanistan (and other parts of the Middle East) with food, medicine, and other items instead of bombing them. What an opportunity to "do something different" that would be on the side of life and true community.

Images of Life: During the week of September 11, I happened to be teaching in Toronto. One evening—as relief from the CNN news--I watched a television program featuring the photography of Paul Strand—a man who strove to see the truth and beauty of the world. Given the horrifying images of the present moment, I was grateful to be reconnected to another vision of what it means to be human. I was particularly struck by one black and white photograph, taken probably in the late 1940s. It showed an elderly Italian mother standing in the doorway of a simple rustic home. With her were six of her eight grown sons—all heroes in the resistance in WWII—each one sitting or standing in a contemplative moment unified by the central figure of their mother. In the wake of trauma, disbelief, and fear, I saw the faces of courage. I saw the face of a mother, the power of a family, and a no-holds-barred-commitment to life.

Live Your Purpose: It’s time to do the thing you feel you were put on earth to do. It may be a heroic act. It may be activist programs to influence decision-makers. It may be to share what you know, or to share what you have. It may be to keep the light burning when life looks dark. Whatever it is, do it with all your heart.

We can’t know
What the divine intelligence
Has in mind!"
Rumi, 12th century

Carol Adrienne, Ph.D., is an internationally-known workshop facilitator and author whose books have been translated into over fifteen languages. Her books include The Purpose of Your Life: Finding Your Place in the World Using Synchronicity, Intuition, and Uncommon Sense; Find Your Purpose, Change Your Life, and The Numerology Kit. She also co-authored with James Redfield, The Celestine Prophecy: An Experiential Guide and The Tenth Insight: Holding the Vision--An Experiential Guide.


Click Here to Learn More About Carol Adrienne


Read Carol's Past Columns

September 2001

August 2001

July 2001

June 2001

May 2001

April 2001

March 2001

February 2001

January 2001

December 2000

November 2000

October 2000

September 2000

August 2000

July 2000

June 2000

May 2000

April 2000

March 2000

February 2000

January 2000


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