Tag Archives: Jesus

LIVING YOUR DESIRED FUTURE IN THE PRESENT – Part 12 – Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself

TO LISTEN TO PART 12  OF THE STUDY GROUP, CLICK HERE

This audio tape is the studied chapter from the book Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself,  by Joe Dispenza, which you can purchase on Amazon.  We are also excerpting the music of Peter Kater and R. Carlos Nakai , “Becoming Human” and Wade Imre Morissette “Still,” which can be purchased on i-Tunes.
“You have all the neurological machinery to transcend time, to make this a skill. What some might call miracles, I describe as cases of individuals working toward changing their state of being, so that their bodies and minds are no longer merely a record of their past but become active partners, taking steps to a new and better future.”
“Transcending the Big Three: Peak Experiences and Ordinary Altered States of Consciousness At this point, you understand that the main obstacle to breaking the habit of being yourself is thinking and feeling equal to your environment, your body, and time. . . .”

We will continue on Monday, at 8 PM, by calling 218-936-4986, pass code 48201.
Enjoy our other websites uplifting a consciousness of grace at http://www.spiritmuvmeditation.com (we are on over 1000 days of a meditation challenge); http://www.spiritmuvvideo.com (we post videos for our Miracle Minute Meditation, as well as our Metaphysical Bible Journey); http://www.spiritmuvblog.com (where we continue to uplift our community of growth in consciousness); http://www.myrtletreepress.webs.com (our publishing website); and http://www.spiritmuv.com (our main website).
IMAGES BY GEORGE REDHAWK

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WE ARE ALL AGENTS OF CHANGE

The full context of change is peculiar to our circumstances and comes in so many shades of determination, power, growth, and pressure that by their sheer nature, they  will draw us out of conventional wisdom, and lift us from the box of conventionality, and catapult us into the stream of pure possibility and amazing potential.
sunrise3Where do I start,  some might ask.

Another might say, how fast can I grow.

Many will say I am angry and comfortable in my anger so I want to remain in the space of opposition.

Gandhi would say I don’t take sides yet I am every side.

My she-roe of all times Harriet Tubman would say, I will meet you on a cold winter night, when you are without compass, or torch, or sufficient clothing against the bloodhounds and the cold winter air, and I will lead you through the underground railroad of strength and pull you through the power of hatred and resistance until you find yourself on the other side of knowing.

sunset6The Chief of Fire Operations would say throw away your script and your PowerPoint and just let them see the spirit of who you are and listen to why change is important: how even the most conservative of us, the most hopeful of us, the most amazing of us, the most loving of us are all agents of change.

The Captains tell me we have an important job to do, important skills to learn, seats of fire to extinguish, but we also have important ground to stand on – a tradition which grew from my father’s father’s father who fought fires and saved lives and taught me how to be family – a family that now realizes it is male and female and trans and bi and gay and queer and all shades of skin and all textures of religion and all skills of comprehension and all complexities of mind with the presence of all voices of God or no-God, the common denominator of which is a love so strong that I will give you my life.

I will rescue you.
loveworkThe courage of change stands at the edge of redemption, the fear of falling, the blackness of fire, the lost of hope, the roof of abandon and catches you just before you go over the edge of the abyss and holds you there beyond politics, beyond bigotry, beyond religion, and sees you as neither mind nor body but soul and resuscitates you until you can breathe again. So that you can return to each moment that realizes change is always possible.

We walk the water of impossibilities, and find that we have the courage to create outside of the box of conventionality, to tell a new story of strength, to dance beyond the realm of fear, to climb into the fresh space of deep listening, to witness that each and every one of us is an agent of change.

We balance ourselves in the legal framework of policies and protections and best practices and better than the best like a careful blade of the law, to make sure that we color within the lines, until we learn to express ourselves outside of them.

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All adversaries activate change.

When I was a little kid, about five years old, my cousins taught me a game called “tonk”; and part of it included a trump card that could win over cards.  It was something that we wanted, something that we could use, something that empowered us to leave the ordinary deck with a new sense of awareness into the extraordinary energy of winning, and find ourselves in that captivating awareness of now in a reality of dissonant voices that struggle to be heard, that find themselves resurrected in the streets of protests and revitalized realms of caring and emerging battles of pride.  We never knew we had to get back to the basics of inclusion, and never knew that the sheer vote of a single card would trump us, into realizing that we have to take our heads out of our proverbial yesterdays.  We have to realize that tomorrow is already here.

david-renshaw-at-the-wallThe wall of blame, the wall of distance, the wall of hatred, the wall of envy, the wall of false pride, the wall of lies, the wall of resistance, the wall of fear has got to come down, so we can really see that we are one, despite our differences.

(This is Part 1 of a Seven-Part Series dedicated to Activating Change)

IT IS TIME FOR A SPIRITUAL RENEWAL INVENTORY

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2 – WHAT AM I?

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6 – WHAT DO I WANT TO BE?

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USE THIS TIME FOR SPIRITUAL RENEWAL TO CHANGE AND KEEP REVITALIZING YOUR LIFE.

REV. LOVING ALSO OFFERS FOR SALE ON AMAZON A NEW JOURNAL TO HELP REFLECT AS YOU ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS: SEEING MYSELF AS GOD SEES ME.

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A PRAYER FOR WORK

” Yoarthlighothworld.  A city on a hill cannot be hidden.  Neithedo people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.  Instead,theyputitonitsstandanigives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds anpraisyour Father in heaven.”
(
Matthew 5:14–16)
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alovawork, saluting the divinity in everyone and every situation.  

Nothinannoncakeemgoofromworkplace, from those whom I supervise, from those who I serve, frothoswhprovidservicetme.

alovialthings.  bless those with whom I work
and I release them to their greatest good.

 I embrace God’s love for me.
aabltmovbeyonthcomforoanboxes within which I have limited myself
anallow God’s love to use me for even greater things than these.PRAY2alovialthings.
Lovgivewatmbeinmbest, giving my best,
accomplishinmbest.

dnodweligossip, or envy, or struggle. I am able to be the best that I am called to be by realizing that I am a blessing, that I have special gifts and talents, that I have something unique to offer, and brinwho I am and the knowledge that I have in the obedience that I am.

alovialthings, a love that is success, a love that is joy, a love that is victorious. I am love in all things.

Lovpenetratemadversaries. Regardless of the situation, love manifests me as a winner.
PRAY6

This is a prayer that we give our best to our work environment, regardless of what shape it may take or where it might be or what it might demand, and that we come to it not so much expecting it to give to us but for us to give to it. May we find there whatever is in
accordance with Spirit’s desire for our growth. May we perform no task out of greed or selfishness or deceit.
PRAY10This is a prayer that we not lose ourselves in the fabric of the law firm, the corporate world, the police force, the military, the government, the university, the hospital—or wherever we find ourselves collectively giving to society—but that we understand that Spirit put us there for a reason, and part of that reason is what we as individuals bring as separate, creative expressions of Spirit.

lightThis is a prayer that we have the vision and the faith to celebrate our gifts with every task that we perform by never being afraid to speak our truths and tell our stories and do our best. Being the best at who we are in all of our imperfections, not perfection itself, is a blessing.
PRAY8This is a prayer that we put our egos aside to contribute what we can, whatever guise it may take, and that we be there to mentor those who need mentoring and that we grow and improve ourselves and increase our knowledge. We pray that we continually bless others in ways we cannot even imagine.
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This is a prayer that we use the work environment to cultivate whatever gifts and talents we have and take them out into the world to continue to develop them and to bless others by doing so. We are constantly growing, constantly learning, and constantly developing better judgment and greater resources, which can ultimately contribute to even greater good, productivity and peace than we currently experience.
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Each lesson, each test, each job, and each performance inevitably prepares us for the next. Life strengthens us through our challenges and our struggles and even our suffering; and the lessons that we learn, the strength that we develop, the faith that we nurture through our experiences at work – whether they appear to be positive or negative – serve us as well as our workplaces because they enhance our creativity, courage, and commitment.
light31If others second-guess our skills and abilities, it only shows their shortcomings, their fears, and their need to grow, not our own. More importantly, the opinions of others are grossly over-rated and give us an opportunity to trust our own judgment. This means that we must be open-minded and receptive to good advice but know the difference between someone else’s judgment and our own wisdom – by developing a discernment that is not merely intellectual but Spirit- based.
Mary and MarthaCentering in Spirit helps us stand strong in the workplace, to be a tremendous success and a great asset because Spirit guides us continuously. Regardless of what we are doing, all we need to do is to be open and receptive to that guidance.
beauty eightThis is a prayer that we center ourselves in the guidance that Spirit gives us, especially in the midst of those who do not recognize our greatness, those who question our worth, those who diminish what we can offer. Only God realizes our greatness, and God puts us in our right time, at our appointed place to contribute, develop, and move forward. This is a prayer for us to shine our light, our gifts, our talents – that only we can offer.
PRAY11This is a prayer that we find a space for Spirit at work. We spend such an enormous amount of time giving to our jobs and our businesses that if we do not take Spirit there, it is absent for 75% or more of the time that we live. There is no separation between us and Spirit merely because we leave church, or temple, or synagogue, or mosque. This is a prayer that we continue to be centered in Spirit—particularly in places that are most in need of its presence. This is a prayer that we allow Spirit to use us and to be so centered in Spirit that we realize it is with us—especially at work. This is a prayer that we open our consciousness to the presence of Spirit in the mundane and everyday, ordinary encounter. . . .
Prayers Cover for CreateSpaceTHIS IS AN EXCERPT FROM REV. LOVING’S BOOK
Prayers for Those Standing on the Edge of Greatness,
which can be purchased on Amazon by clicking here, or wherever books are sold.

Look out for the sequel in 2016!

WHAT YOU NEED TO LEARN TO UNLEARN – PART 1

Cecilia July 4 2012 HeadshotEach Saturday, we devote ourselves to reading and discussing God is a Brown Girl Too on our “Self-Empowerment Call” from 9:30 AM to 10:30 AM, at 567-314-3648, Pass Code 48201.

One of the things that we often discuss is what we have to un-learn.  The truth is that many of us have no idea why we believe what we do.  We do not know the history of our indoctrination nor do we question it.

The following is the first of several excerpts from papers that I have written about theology which serve as the foundation for God is a Brown Girl Too.   We were born as depraved sinners; we were taught to believe that we are powerless, even though Jesus Christ taught that the kingdom is in us; that the Holy Spirit is in us; that the Father is in us; and that He is in us.

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The following is an excerpt from  African American Spiritual Traditions,
which was written in May 2004.  It discusses why some people fail to believe that the power of God is within them.

THE SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES BETWEEN EASTERN AND WESTERN ANCIENT UNDERSTANDINGS OF THE ROLES OF JESUS CHRIST AND THE HOLY SPIRIT

Although the formal division of the Church into separate Eastern (Greece and the Near East) and Western (Western Europe) churches occurred in 1054 in the Great Schism between Rome and Constantinople, there had been a growing division in the way these two churches or theologies understood the role of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit for hundreds of years.

On the one hand, the East practiced the same theology that  Christ gave to the Apostles and that the Apostles gave to the early church fathers.  The East was also influenced by the Egyptian desert fathers[1], who practiced rigid asceticism to combat their physical passion in order to enhance their Oneness with God.

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Western churches, on the other hand, were largely influenced by Augustine of Hippo, and to a lesser extent, Tertullian.   A1

Augustine, who was born in Africa though said to be a Roman citizen, has been called one of the greatest theologians of Western Christianity.  Their Fourth Century writings had little influence in the East, largely because they were written in Latin as opposed to Greek.[2]    (See Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, “Eastern Orthodoxy”, http://en.www.wikipedia.org )

Eastern theologians relied more on Greek philosophers, borrowing their language to explain Christian doctrine.  Significant differences between Western and Eastern ancient understandings of the roles of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are reflected in their understanding of (A) the “origin and procession of the Holy Spirit”, and (B) the “specific work of the Spirit in God’s plan of creation and salvation”.[3]

  1. The Origin and Procession of the Holy Spirit

The early Christian Church was troubled by disagreement over the nature and relationship of the Trinity.   The West saw the Holy Spirit as proceeding – and therefore originating — from both the Father and the Son, subordinate to neither.  The East saw the Holy Spirit as proceeding or originating from the Father alone.   According to the East, the Father alone brought forth the Holy Spirit; and the Son sent the Holy Spirit as the indwelling paraclete.

The Nicene Creed, established in 325 AD to conform Christian belief, is one of the key documents setting forth this fundamental difference in perception.  It, in part, sets forth:

“We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father . . .”

A-3The First Council of Constantinople adopted a revised version of the 325 AD creed in 381 AD, which was the last time that Catholic and Orthodox communions would agree on a Credo.  The phrase “and the Son”, which is the filioque in Latin, was added to the Nicene Creed at Synod of Toledo in Spain in 447 AD,[4] so that it read the Holy Spirit “who proceeds from the Father and the Son.”

West v East

Augustine of Hippo wrote that “the Holy Spirit is neither of the Father alone nor the Son but of both” – stressing their “unity.”  His view was if Spirit proceeded from both the Father and the Son,[5] then the work of the Holy Spirit collapsed into that of the Son.

But in John 15:26 (“when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me”), Jesus Christ  tells us that the Spirit proceeds from the Father – a scripture that the East constantly adduce in their criticism of the filioque clause of the West.

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The East follows the Johnanine doctrine closely, which distinguishes between the generation of the son (John 1:14 — and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth; John 3:16 —for God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son; and Luke 3:22 — and the Holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove upon Him, and a voice came from Heaven which said “You are my Beloved Son; in You I am well pleased” ) and the procession of the Spirit.

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“Athanasius and the Cappadocians [Gregory of Nyssa, his older brother St. Basil or Basil the Great, and Gregory of Nazianzus] emphasized the participation of all three hypostases in all divine activity as a consequence and condition of their unity of essence.”  Systematic Theology, at 271 (citations omitted).   The Apostle John saw the Holy Spirit as the “other advocate” or paraclete who the Father will send in the name of Jesus or whom Jesus will send after exaltation by the Father (John 16:7 – “if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you”).

John 16 7

Consistent with John, the Eastern view was that the Holy Spirit issued from God the Father, through Jesus the Christ, so that God-Jesus Christ-Holy Spirit are viewed as three divine and unique hypostases.  The  Spirit proceeded from the Father through the Son and was perfected in the Holy Spirit.  Gregory of Nyssa, the younger brother of St. Basil, explained this procession as “three torches burning”, with each transmitting fire to the next; the Son being used as an instrument of the Father.  St. Basil believed God created through the Son and perfected through the Holy Spirit.

2.  The Specific Work of the Spirit in Creation and Salvation

The “original sin” was allegedly inherited at the creation of humanity from the Fall of Adam and Eve.  The West believes that after the Fall, humanity needed a savior to restore their right relationship with God.  Thus, Jesus Christ is the savior to restore humanity from sin. The East, however, believe that the “original sin” was not inherited but salvation is an ongoing process of improvement and healing for humanity  as a whole, all of which has been damaged or “tainted” by the Fall.

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Under early Western theological thought, the only way for a wretched and depraved humanity to receive the salvation of the Holy Spirit from the sin that was its so-called birth right was through the church.  To the West, only the church and the Bishop had the ability to dispense the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  Ignatius, the Bishop of Antioch even wrote in one of his famous letters that “You should all follow the Bishop as Jesus did the Father.”    There was no individual anointing by the Holy Spirit as that could lead to heresy and confusion.  The West wanted full control; so there was only the anointing of the church.  In other words, to get the Holy Ghost, you had to go to church.  To speak in tongues, you had to go to church.  To receive the gift of prophecy, you had to be in church.

Eastern theologians, however, viewed spirituality as an individual experience.  This was likely inspired by the Egyptian desert fathers’ practice of rigid asceticism and control over themselves as individuals.  For example,  Gregory of Nazianzen, one of the Cappadocian Fathers, was concerned that the Holy Spirit not be suppressed.  Similarly, Gregory of Nyssa believed that our experience of the Holy Spirit is based, in part, on our Free Will to move from “Glory to Glory” and that the Kingdom of God is within us.  Macarius said that no part of the soul is covered with darkness; all of the soul is covered in spiritual light.

In the East, Gregory, Chrysostom and Macarius espoused the general view that we were made in the image of God.  The so-called original sin was just a taint.  Moreover, it was the result of humanity’s ability to exercise its God-given free will.  Chrysostom believed that evil was not a part of human nature, even though we may have a tendency to exercise our will to do what appears pleasurable but may be evil.  Despite the fact that the Fall tarnished the image of God (a result of “moral negligence”), God’s purpose is to restore humans to their original pristine perfection.  Athanasius described this concept of theosis:  “The Son of God became man that we night become God.” 

John Wesley said that “no man sins because he has not grace, but because he does not use the grace which he hath.”  Spirit — under this Eastern perspective —  could not be confined to the church.  This is consistent with the way Spirit moved in the lives of the nineteenth century African American women.  The church was not receptive to them, but they still received the glory of God, the salvation of Jesus Christ, and the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Sin was always projected on to brown skinned women everywhere; they were condemned, ridiculed, raped, oppressed, ostracized, sexually exploited, physically abused, mentally tortured – and needed to understand the Truth, that they are glorious, beloved, sacred daughters of God, blessed by Her Love and Her Grace.  As Sojourner Truth said, God is an ocean of Love and we move in Him like Fish in the Sea.

Sojourner

The Western perception of the Holy Spirit  produced a negative anthropological stance.  If everyone was a depraved sinner, tarnished forever from the fall of Adam and Eve, then the black woman, one of the most despised creatures – by white men, white women and black men worldwide – would be at the very bottom of depravity and sin.  The irony of this is that Eve, the oldest bones found in Africa, said to be the mother of all civilization had to be black.  According to the Discovery Channel’s documentary on Eve, all people were born from her; their pigmentation changed over time.  Nevertheless, under the Western Church rigid view of sin, Eve and her children can never be fully saved from their sins, except through Jesus for which there is no perfect salvation.

Those who attend church based on the Western school of thought, perceive themselves as sinners, who can never be saved.  They call on Jesus as their Savior, but look to the hereafter as the only way to experience true happiness.

The East has a more positive anthropological stance.   If the Fall is perceived as merely a taint or “moral negligence”, a sin for which we were acquitted when Jesus the Christ died upon the cross and was resurrected, we can redeem ourselves with the aid of the Holy Spirit, by baptism and rebirth, by the teachings of Jesus the Christ, and by the grace of God Our Father.

In John 14:12, Jesus said “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do.”   If we believe that we can attain the stature of the Christ, we can do so without the church, without the bishop, without the pastor, or the preacher, or the congregation of so-called saints.  Jesus Christ taught at the temple, but he did not worship at church.

Jesus said, in John 10:34-35, “it is not written in your law, I said, ye are Gods.”

Paul said “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you.”

A more positive theology opens up the depraved sinner’s consciousness to the realization that she is not depraved, nor a sinner, nor worthless – but the worthy mother of civilization and co-creator of all things.

She has a specific work to do to restore humanity’s divine image;  she is capable of unfolding her perfection;  salvation is hers.

(Part 2 will be added next week.  References are below. )

[1] These anchorites or hermits sometimes led a life of prayer deep in the desert, spending time in prayer and meditation while denying themselves of food and sleep (e.g., Anthony, eating a few crumbs every second day, while walled up in a fort; he received visitations from angels, demons, wild animals, and other apparitions).  Dorotheus lived 6o years in a cave, sleeping while sitting up.  Macarius stood upright through the entire period of Lent.  Syrian ascetics were known to place themselves in holes; one slept in a hollowed-out log full of thorns and stones.  Some took off all of their clothes and grazed on herbs and grass like animals.  The Syrian stylites spent their lives praying at the top of tall stone pillars (e.g., Simeon lived 40 years atop a 50 foot stone pillar).  Not all anchorites were men; many were women!  (Lange, Stuart, “Searching for Intimacy with the Desert Fathers”, Reality Magazine, Issue 40.)

[2] All branches of Eastern Orthodoxy trace a continuous apostolic succession back to the five early centers of Christianity: Rome, Jerusalem, Antioch, Alexandria, and Constantinople. The Western tradition is largely seen as Catholicism and Protestantism (e.g., the Roman Catholic Church).

[3] Quotes without citations are taken from Dr. Anne Rebecca Elliott’s dissertation, African American Women’s Understanding off the Spirit: Ancient Eastern Pneumatological Influences (1998).

[4] The dispute over the filioque clause and the manner of its adoption helped lead to the great schism 600 years later.

[5]  The “result”, however is “not in keeping with the witness of the scripture.”  Wolfhart Pannenberg, Systematic Theology  (1991),  at 317.  In fact, Western theology is now reaching a consensus that the filioque is “uncanonical” and the “Augustinian doctrine of the procession of the Spirit from the Father is an inappropriate formulation.”  Id. at 318 and n. 181.

SELF-EMPOWERMENT SESSION ONE: REDISCOVER YOUR TRUE SELF

AUM for Constant Contact

Next Saturday, July 19, God is a Brown Girl Too will enjoy a virtual retreat via the phone, at 8:00 to 9:00 A.M.  Just dial 567-314-3648; use pass code 48201.

Here is the excerpt from the God is a Brown Girl Too book that we will be discussing, which can be purchased from Amazon and  Barnes and Noble, and wherever books are sold.

GBGII Cover

Re-Discover Your True Self

When you know that I am you,
and you are me –
you will begin to realize who God is.

***

Do you remember who I am?  I am the Absolute Good that breathed you into being. I am the Divine Mind that gave you consciousness. I am the Endless Source that formed your soul.  I am the Inexhaustible Supply that continues to feed you out of the eternal cosmos of the universe. Nothing came before me.  I AM that I AM.  I am the Creator here to remind you that my image and likeness is reflected as you.  Creation is not something that happened and then stopped.  Creation is something I did, and am still doing.  Wherever there is creativity, there I am.

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In order to know me in the Spirit, you will have to transcend the box of tradition in which you are locked. You will have to remove those strait-laced handcuffs of dependence, fear and shame. You will have to be bold enough to leave doctrine and diplomacy to embrace your own power.  If you want to reclaim your life, acknowledging me – the Divine within – is not an option; it is a necessity.  Men have so dominated your religion that most of you believe that I am an old white man.

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Perhaps if you close your eyes and center your thoughts in a past that transcends the world as you know it, you can remember a creation that is older than European biblical tradition.  Try to remember a beginning where ancient Africa was the Motherland of creation.  Meditate on what Moses told the Israelites.  He said “you forgot the God who gave you birth” (Deut. 32:18 NIV), or recall that Isaiah said God carried you since your birth (Isaiah 46:3).  Imagine me from Hosea’s perspective, who said that I taught you to walk, that I healed you, that I lifted you like a child to my cheek and bent down to feed you (Hosea 11:3-4).

God is a Brown Girl Too Quilting Workshop Two

I cannot be limited to words, but you may prefer to call me Spirit.  Like “Love,” Spirit is a term that you can use interchangeably with “God.”  The elusive sound of Spirit will help you stop picturing a person with a long white beard.  Picture me as you growing in all directions at once instead of a person with a long white beard. I am greater than you can imagine, comprised of everything that is.  I am that point at which you find yourself.  I am far greater than any pre-conceived notion of human sexuality or gender. If this is confusing, call me whatever you like.  Call me “science” or “chance” or “coincidence” or “miracle.”  I am everything that is.

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Throughout time, the bodies of women have carried and delivered my souls, those fragments of me from now to eternity. I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last.  These are my mountains and my valleys and my trees.  This is my thunder and my rain and my river.  You are all that I am. You cannot be limited, or minimized, or marginalized or demonized.  You are my seed of life.  Come and reclaim your rightful place as equal heirs to my throne.

God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Malesha's Dance

True liberation of the oppressed, the imprisoned, the disenfranchised, the denigrated and the despised will only evolve as each individual evolves.  It is up to each one of you to realize that you are more than your flesh, and to re-discover yourself as God.  I am your liberation, your freedom through Spirit, and your connection to unconditional love.  It is up to you to allow my light to glow in all of its magnificence as you.  My beloved Jesus said “Í am the Light of the world” – but also that you are the light of the world.  Let your light shine.

I AM beauty

Through you, I teach, nurse, build, draw, sell, purchase, divine, uplift, heal, nanny, negotiate, arbitrate, lawyer, doctor, sweep, mop, clean, cook, pray, baptize, massage, water, write, dance, model, sing, invent, farm, design, birth, pastor and encourage – not  only the hearts of the privileged few but of the entire world.  I fight for freedom.  I abolish apartheid, genocide, lynch mobs, gas ovens, prostitution, slavery.  I lead protests, I die for justice and equality. I go to jail in order stand up for what I believe is right. I refuse to give up my seat.  But I have not stopped killing and maiming and abusing and destroying because you have not.  You have forgotten your true self worth.  You have given up your power.  You have yet to realize that you are my co-creator.  You choose.  You decide.  You deliver.  I can only do for you what I can do through you.

I am a Woman of High Faith

I send manna constantly, but you refuse to pick it up, or you still attempt to store it for yourselves.  No matter how much you horde, you cannot be nurtured by it until you stop being afraid and be in my moment.  You don’t need to be greedy, or jealous, or spiteful – especially of one another.  Imagine how foolish that looks to me, knowing that you have all that you need.  I am your way out of no way, your Jesus on the main line, your calm in the storm, your gangster, your hook-up, your constant supply.  Stop judging by mere appearances.  Remember that you really are God.

Move From the Love You Know

Step Into Your Greatness

When you stand on the edge of pure possibility,
you can use your prayer as the impetus to fly.

***

It is important for everyone to study and know the truth – especially you.  Disregard those who believe that you have no right to God – for they want you to believe that you have no right to yourself.  No woman or girl should be oppressed because of those who misinterpret the truth to mean that God is male and therefore, only men are God.  I am inextricably part of each one of you in the same way that a breath is part of the wind.  You, too, are the energy of life.  There is no separation between all that I am and all that you are.  Paul was right when he said that you live, move and have your being in God.  You are my offspring  (Acts 17:28).

Pam and Lia Beautiful movement

All of you who see me in Jesus should be aware that Jesus acknowledged me in you when he said  “I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you” (John 14:20).  Jesus said that the “kingdom of God is within you”  (Luke 17:21).  Jesus not only said I and the Father are One, he also said, “you are gods” (John 10:34).  This is called oneness.  This means that there is no separation between you and Spirit.  This means that your greatness is you waiting for you to express the Absolute Good that you are.

GBGII 2012 BBB

Feel me at the bottom of your feet.  I am stepping through divine vibrations that I am sending from the tip of your toes up your muscles and bones –through your veins and glands – to the top of your head.  I am always in your midst as your teacher, your companion and your guide.  I always direct you, move you, lead you, speak to you, create through you, act through you, dance through you, and sing through you. I am always there, always here, always now.

IMG_0584

I sing“Jesus loves me this I know” because it is Jesus whose teachings have taught many to step into their greatness. Jesus is the perfect manifestation of Spirit in creation.  Jesus is the divine idea of God fully expressed as humanity. There is nothing like the blood of Jesus.  But focus less on his crucifixion and more on his resurrection. Jesus has never stopped reminding Brown Girls everywhere that you will do “even greater things” than him (John 14:12).  Eat those words with as much joy as you would a trip to Red Lobster, and let them slither off your tongue like those hot cheese biscuits.

Cecilia

Christ is not a person.  Christ is the salvation, the stature that Jesus attained to show you that God dwells in all humanity.  Paul said “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27), teaching you that Spirit is your birthright.

IMG_1925

I sing, “Jesus on the main line, tell ’em what you want.” But Jesus does not merely teach you to ask for what you want.  He commands that you do so – commands that you be in the right consciousness to receive it. Jesus is teaching you to step into the kingdom of God that is within you, and know that all else – every single detail of my good will be added to you (Matt. 6:31-33).

God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Bonding in Faith

 

 

EIGHT LESSONS FROM THE SILENCE

IMG_0135[1]In Sedona, so much was revealed that it will take several blogs to process it all.  Even after several more blogs, the process of understanding the blessings of Sedona will be ongoing.

Aligned

For example, one of the most important parts of the retreat is being silent.  We were silent every night from 10 PM to 6 AM, but on the fourth day, we went into more focused silence from 5 PM to 5 AM.  In the silence, it is easier to practice the presence because you can more easily leave the world around you.

auras

The first lesson that I learned in the silence was compassion.  I realized that the loudest noise I hear – the noise that I needed to silence – was my inner voice.  Take a moment and listen to your inner voice.  What are you telling yourself?

Bayliss seeing

My inner voice was filled with criticism and condemnation.  I had to silence my inner voice as well as my outer voice – to hear God.

Altars

The second lesson I learned in the silence was to look deeply into my own eyes and smile.  In the mirror, my whole face smiled with me.  Have you taken the time to see you and bless yourself with a smile?  I never would have taken the time to smile at myself if I were not silent.  Looking deeply into my eyes and smiling was like staring deeply into an opening in my soul.

face to face

The third lesson that I learned in the silence was to be moderate in all things.  Spirit made me promise not to deprive myself.  I can eat the blanched kale and oatmeal and fruit that we had for breakfast – with ground flaxseed.  But for me, I can also eat flesh in moderation, sugar in moderation, salt in moderation.   Moderation also requires that I in-take the colors of the universe: beets and oranges, strawberries  and radishes; sweet potatoes and tangerines; cucumbers and mangoes, and sweet potatoes and egg plant.  Whole foods shined through us fresh as a new aura of wholeness.

Gina

The fourth lesson that I learned in the silence was to stop judging.  Instead, I allow peace to fill my heart: a peace that washes away fear, a peace that washes away sadness, a peace that nourishes my soul.  In peace, I rest and am renewed – rising like an eagle, strong enough this time to fly higher.

FB bird in the cactus

The fifth lesson that I learned in the silence is how to see my husband more clearly.  I really saw him as who he was for the first time.  He was there in the silence too as he accompanies me on every retreat and for every service, presentation or workshop.  We have been in the silence several times before so we know to avoid each other’s eyes.  Our eyes would be conversation in and of themselves.  Instead I feel his anticipation of my needs, his desire to give, his patient attention to detail, his strength to my weakness, his husband to my wife, his light in my darkness.

Marlon Our Guide

The sixth lesson I learned in the silence is that I already hear the prayers of others – not loudly, but instinctively.  I already am part of the impetus to receive answers.  I already ride on the wings of grace with blessings and favor.  Miracles are already taking shape.

embraced by the sun

The seventh lesson I learned in the silence is how to see you.  I know you by your magnificence.  Your radiance transcends the mago womb of love.  You are as brilliant as dawn, dressed in new moons, wearing the victory of new seasons.  Each one of your ten toes and fingers wiggle in the rainbows of lasting promises.  Each one of your amazing stars curls through your hair and colors your skin endless shades and hues of brown.  I learn the importance of being present for you as much as I am present for me.

IMG_1935

The eighth lesson that I learned in the silence is that my dreams are already one with nature.  My dreams awaken in the desert even more eloquently than they do in the city.  In Sedona, my dreams ride the winds of gentle kisses and leap from the limbs of juniper trees, saying “you have arrived, you have entered a new realm, you are here.”

Healing Walks

In the silence, deep within the silence, I know that we are born of the same mother, fed by the same father, guided by the same holy spirit, led by the same Christ of many different names.  I know that our song will last forever because I can hear it.  It is a song bestowed on us by the ancients, a song of grace given to us by God, a song of power exuding from every cell of our being, a song of wholeness connecting us as one, a song of Genesis constantly creating, a song of vision beyond the world dimension.

Cecilia

In the silence, I hear a song of joy that never ever stops singing.

IMG_1925

 

NAMASTE,

The love in me embraces the love in you.

Rev. Cecilia B. Loving

STEP INTO YOUR GREATNESS


When you stand on the edge of pure possibility,
you can use your prayer as the impetus to fly.

***

alvin ailey
Alvin Ailey Collection

an excerpt from the book God is a Brown Girl Too, where God speaks as us to us, from the kingdom within . . .

Reading God is a Brown Girl Too

 

“I sing“Jesus loves me this I know” because it is Jesus whose teachings have taught many to step into their greatness. Jesus is the perfect manifestation of Spirit in creation.  Jesus is the divine idea of God fully expressed as humanity. There is nothing like the blood of Jesus.

Jesus TwoBut focus less on his crucifixion and more on his resurrection.

Jesus has never stopped reminding Brown Girls everywhere that you will do “even greater things” than him (John 14:12). Jesus Supper

Eat those words with as much joy as you would a trip to Red Lobster, and let them slither off your tongue like those hot cheese biscuits.”

 

Christ is not a person.

Jesus SixChrist is the salvation, the stature that Jesus attained to show you that God dwells in all humanity.

Paul said “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27), teaching you that Spirit is your birthright.

I sing, “Jesus on the main line, tell ’em what you want.”

But Jesus does not merely teach you to ask for what you want.  He commands that you do so — commands that you be in the right consciousness to receive it. Jesus is teaching you to step into the kingdomJesus Te of God that is within you, and know that all else — every single detail of my good will be added to you (Matt. 6:31-33).

Jesus ThreeI sing “Yes, Jesus loves me, yes, Jesus loves me” because Jesus taught you that if you don’t have the good sense to ask in your own name, ask in his.  He said that he will serve as your proxy and your healer and your friend.

But he taught you these things so that eventually you would become wise enough to touch the hem of your own garment.

There is fish and bread for you to multiply.  There are oceans for you to walk.

There are dead among you who need to be raised.  There are stones that need to be redeemed from accusers.

elevenThere are wellsprings of living water to drink.  But I need you to stand up my daughter — in a  consciousness that realizes you have whatever it takes.  You will never be successful if you do not grasp the unlimited power that I am as you. I don’t care about your weave, your Gucci, your rock or the glitter of your rims — even your millions don’t  matter.

Only when you awaken to your true self do you step into your greatness.

It is important for everyone to study and know the truth — especially you.  Disregard those who believe that you have no right to God — for they want you to believe that you have no right to yourself. alvin ailey 4

No woman or girl should be oppressed because of those who misinterpret the truth to mean that God is male and therefore, only men are God.  I am inextricably part of each one of you in the same way that a breath is part of the wind.

flight 4You, too, are the energy of life.  There is no separation between all that I am and all that you are.  Paul was right when he said that you live, move and have your being in God.  You are my offspring  (Acts 17:28).

All of you who see me in Jesus should be aware that Jesus acknowledged me in you when he said  “I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you” (John 14:20).  Jesus said that the “kingdom of God is within you”  (Luke 17:21).

Jesus not only said I and the Father are One, he also said, “you are gods” (John 10:34).

This is called oneness.

This means that there is no separation between you and Spirit.

This means that your greatness is you waiting for you to express the Absolute Good that you are. alvin ailey 3flight

Feel me at the bottom of your feet.

I am stepping through divine vibrations that I am sending from the tip of your toes up your muscles and bones — through your veins and glands — to the top of your head.

alvin ailey 2I am always in your midst as your teacher, your companion and your guide.

I always direct you, move you, lead you, speak to you, create through you, act through you, dance through you, and sing through you.

I am always there, always here, always now.

 

WHAT IS “GOD IS A BROWN GIRL TOO”?

For our 100th blog, I decided to re-visit the genesis of God is a Brown Girl Too.  God is a Brown Girl Too is a spiritual movement that was born when I was in seminary and the Holy Spirit revealed to me that one aspect of my Rev Loving leading the sessioncalling was to uplift the divine nature of women and girls of color everywhere.  This movement is called God is a Brown Girl Too because it is not limited to Africa but to brown women and girls worldwide.  Why?  Because we have been marginalized, demonized and denigrated throughout history and need to reconstruct our understanding of Spirit as us – not as some old white man who could care less about us.  We need to recapture the beauty, grace and power of our divine birthright.

God as Mother, Father, Creator of us all is always present as us all, always loving, always continuing to express as us. 

Sabrina and KiaThe Brown Girl represents the daughter of all beginnings.  Genetic studies and fossil evidence show that humans in Africa, between 200,000 and 150,000 years ago.  Based on our knowledge to date, our foremothers left Africa between 125,000 and 60,000 years ago, and that over time these humans replaced earlier human populations such as Neanderthals.   And yet, because those who re-wrote history and science and religion left us obscured, worthless, shameful, or – at best – comely, we fail to realize who we really are: made in the image and likeness of the creator of all. 

God is a Brown Girl Too exercises the power that we all have to re-claim our legacy as God’s image and likeness for ourselves.

 Womanist Alice Walker understood the significance of Brown Girl-ology when she wrote The Color PurpleCelie is the downtrodden Spirit within,God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 037 who does not find her fullest expression in life until she finds out that God is not a man – but is everything, even the color purple!  Shug Avery sings, when you feel the truth and love what you feel, you have found God.  Understanding our Oneness with the heart and purpose of the Brown Girl, who merely sits in the shadows of scripture, dances on the edge of time, nonexistent or irrelevant to most – is a challenge worth pursuing because it is by seeing beyond her face-lessness, name-lessness and voice-lessness that we find ourselves.   Creating Outside the Box Three

People from all races, religions, nationalities, and cultures flock to hear the Brown Girl’s voice in The Color Purple on Broadway and to witness her story of realizing that God is within her and everyone else – not merely to be entertained but because there is a ministry in her God is a Brown Girl Too Prayermessage. 

 When I arrived at New York Theological Seminary, I met Drs. Delores Williams and Anne Elliott, in a course that I took on the Spiritual Traditions of Nineteenth Century African American Women.  These two womanist theologians taught me that theology is not just how the white man sees God – but how we each walk and talk with God; that African American women have a special relationship with Jesus;  that we are moved by the Holy Spirit in a particular way; that we fail to question the messages that we embrace as gospel – like the rape of the slave girl Hagar at the bidding of Sarah; that black women through time have defied death and slavery to bring the word of God; that we have a heritage which not only anoints us with salvation but also with hope. Spirit of the Living God is My Breath and My Heartbeat

Drs. Williams and Elliott laid part of the foundation for the beginning of this discourse with acknowledgement of how God expresses as me, along with my background in Unity. 

Pam and Lia Beautiful movementUnity is a nondenominational faith, which teaches that there is no separation between the human spirit and God: that in this eternal Oneness, the “I AM”, we are a living expression of God.Gathering for Morning Prayer Aboard the Ship  Some may find this heretical or blasphemous, but in 2 Corinthians 6:16, the Bible teaches us that “God hath said I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and will be their God.” In 1 Corinthians 3:16, Paul said “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you.” He said that “we live and move, and have our being” in God  (Acts 17:28). We loved

DSC08154[1]In Romans 8:9, the biblical witness said “Ye are not the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.” In John 10:34-35, Jesus said, “it is not written in your law, I said, ye are Gods.” In John 14:12, Jesus said “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do.”  These scriptures and similar passages form the foundation for the church that Spirit formed through me: SPIRITMUV.  SPIRITMUV is the spiritual birthplace for God is a Brown Girl Too.

Yvonne and Paul

Like Unity, SPIRITMUV teaches that we have the same consciousness that Jesus Christ had, “Christ Consciousness.”  Therefore, it is imperative for us to seek and embrace the kingdom in our lives through our conscious connection with the Spirit of God: in every word that we speak, every vision that we have, every breath that we breathe, every inch of space that we take up.  God dwells within us and does not depart from us.  We are the DSC_0438temple of God and we live and move and have our being in God.  We are not only flesh but also Spirit; there is no separation between us and God.      GBGII 2012 BBB               

 In 1997, when I was recuperating from surgery, I began to write a collection of poetry called “Plain Brown Girl,” thinking not only about myself but about all black women, asking who is thereGBGII 2012 F to tend our wounds and comfort us when we are healing.  The Brown Girl spoke through me through centuries, reminding me of that she is the face of God.  She expressed herself as a Brown Girl partly because of the limitations of the use of the word “black” to embrace people who are not only the most beautiful deepest, darkest brown but are other endless shades of beautiful brown. God is love

Brown also embraces cultures that do not fall under the “black” rubric – many Asians, Hispanics and Latinos and Native Americans whose darker color is indigenous to their land but no different than all of the darker sisters who populate this world and have been marginalized and condemned as always less than

GBGII 2012 JDSC_0408Brown Girl-ology is the daughter of womanist theology, born to fashion a God from a past that was before history; courageous enough to create her own myths; inventive enough to question the founding fathers of a faith that is largely prejudiced and racist and sexist; daring enough to remember God as Mother, as well as Father; prophetic enough to celebrate Spirit as herself rather than as a God that does not embrace her image and likeness.  We embrace the Spirit in us through the power ofDSC_0447 community. 

To date, there are been five retreats: the Opening to Consciousness Retreat in 2009; the Awakening to Love Retreat in 2010; the Creating Outside the Box Retreat in 2011; the Tell a New Story Retreat in 2012; and the Hope of Glory Retreat in 2013 aboard the Carnival Glory Cruise Ship to Nova Scotia. In 2014, we will have the Reclaiming the Vortex Retreat in Sedona, Arizona.

God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Bonding in Faith

God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 074We are grateful for those of you who have joined us on these retreats as they cannot exist without you. 

We look forward to you joining us on future retreats.  We also invite you to celebrate yourself and become more aware of Spirit expressing as you by attending our Sunday God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 061Worth-Ship Services at the Unity Center of New York City, at 2:30 PM, at 213 West 58th Street, near Broadway. 

We meet in the Upper Room to meditate, pray, teach, sing, grow, listen, embrace, and uplift the divine within. 

Hope you can help keep our community strong by supporting the you in us.

Much love and many blessings on the path,

Reverend Cecilia Loving