Song of the Beloved – Here’s Your Sneak Peek!

 

 

Song of the Beloved – the Gospel According to Mary Magdalene is uploaded to Amazon and will available in the next 10 days!  Below is a sneak peek! 

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Prologue:

As I face the twilight of my life, I find myself drawn to thoughts of the past. Although I am grateful for the hospitality of the sisters of the holy isle of Avalon who have provided a home and a sanctuary for me in my dying years, and have found a great joy in their presence and our shared work, my heart still aches for the life I have known, and those I have loved.  It is of one life and one love that the holy sisters have asked me to write so that they may preserve these stories for the generations to come.  Sixty years have passed since that time but the experiences remain etched in my heart.

The life and love of which I speak belongs to the time I shared with my beloved, Jesus bar Joseph. It was through Jesus that I was healed of the demons that destroyed the innocence and wonder I had enjoyed as a child and it was through Jesus that I was restored to my original nature, remembering my Oneness with God in love.  It was also through Jesus that I discovered the calling of my soul to be a vessel of God’s love in the world, to bring healing and comfort to many and to share the Good News of God’s unconditional love.  And it was with Jesus that I first lived out this calling.  Jesus became not only my teacher, but my closest friend and companion, my partner in ministry, my beloved and my husband.

The love that Jesus offers, however, was never just for me alone. The love that Jesus embodied was for everyone and was intended to bring freedom and liberation to a world trapped in fear.  Through his words, his touch, his very presence, he acts as a mirror, showing those with eyes to see, the truth of their Divine and loving nature. In Jesus’ presence, we are empowered to remember our truest nature as beloved sons and daughters of Abwoon – the name by which Jesus calls God.  This awareness of our truest nature brings the peace and joy for which every man, woman and child hungers, and then compels us to go out into the world to be that awakening love for others as Jesus has done for us.

This is the true wonder of Jesus – not the miracles he accomplished, the stories he told or even the courage that allowed him to face death on the cross. Neither was it the resurrection. Instead, the miracle of Jesus bar Joseph is that his love transcends all fear, for all time. It is this love that beckoned me to boldly stand beside him in being an example of God’s love in the world and to courageously continue this mission despite the sword that pierced my heart on the day of his death.  It is the transforming power of his love that has raised many from suffering and darkness to discover new life.  I cherish the words he offered as comfort to me in my own times of darkness, “Do not be afraid. I am with you always, even until the end of time,” and now understand these words are meant for all of us.

Although the loss of Jesus’ physical presence has caused me great sorrow, I am filled each day with the joy of experiencing and sharing the fullness of his love. Jesus’ presence has healed me, given me comfort, guided my steps and led me to truth.  It is for this reason that he has come, not to me alone, but for the whole world – that we may all know peace and so that we may come to know the God that dwells within us and who seeks to be known in the world through our own unique giftedness and call. Much has been and will be written about Jesus’ life and teachings, but the limitations of words and perceptions prevent the fullness of Jesus’ message from being understood.  It is for the sake of this message that I bare my heart and soul, and proclaim the song of my beloved.

Mary, of the House of Lazarus, “The Magdalene”

Excerpt from Song of the Beloved, the Gospel According to Mary Magdalene.  Copyright 2014


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Who is Saved?

The theme of this week’s Agape’ Meditation Newsletter, supplement to this Sunday’s Authentic Freedom Virtual Church, is SALVATION.  Do we need to believe in Jesus to be saved?   Jesus might say, no. 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Thirty-first Sunday Ordinary Time

 

Agape’ Meditation Practices Newsletter

Supplement to the Authentic Freedom Virtual Church Service

 

Scripture Reading:

Jesus said to the crowds: “Everything that the Father gives me will come to me, and I will not reject anyone who comes to me, because I came down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of the one who sent me. And this is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it on the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him on the last day.”

Jn 6: 37 – 40

 Resurrection

Additional Readings: 

Wis 3: 1-9

Ps 23: 1-6

Rom 5: 5-11

 

We’re All Saved?

This is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it on the last day.

 

John’s gospel is a tricky one. On one hand, there are statements like the one above – indicating God’s will that all will be reunited in God’s love. Reflection on this statement seems to open the door to “salvation” to all human beings. Soon following that, however, is the Johnnine qualifier “everyone who sees the Son and believes in him will have eternal life.” Suddenly, the promise of reunion with God seems conditional – only those who see the Son and believe are saved. If we believe that Jesus came to teach us how to love and that Jesus preached of a God whose love is unconditional, how is it that only Christians can be saved? Inconsistencies like these are what have led to centuries of Christian arrogance creating horrors like the Crusades, the Inquisition and Witch Hunts that have killed millions of people all “in the name of God.”

When faced with these inconsistencies, prayerful meditation on scripture is critical. It is only in prayer, inviting God to help us see past the inconsistencies of scripture, that we can be open to receiving God’s truth. (John’s gospel, for example, was written between 90 and 100 CE and is a theological reflection on the resurrected Christ. Additionally, John’s gospel has likely been significantly redacted to fit a specific agenda.) The Vatican II Fathers used these techniques of prayerful reflection, along with theological debate, in developing the Vatican II documents. In these documents, the bishops, cardinals and pope are clear – all human beings can be saved – regardless of their religious beliefs. Salvation, in their eyes, is something that we cannot grasp, but is a mystery known only to God. If God is unconditionally loving – that means EVERYONE – Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Pagan, even Atheist. All are one in God.

Where have you found scriptural inconsistencies to be troubling?

How do you reconcile the God of love that you know with the fickle and jealous God often portrayed in scripture?

What do you want to believe about God?

What do you want to believe about salvation?

 

Spiritual Practices – Piercing through the veil

Lectio-Divina (Divine Reading) is a spiritual practice which helps us to see through the veil of human perceptions and agendas to access God’s truth. This week, you are invited to apply Lectio-Divina to the above scripture to uncover God’s truth for you.

Read the scripture slowly and meditatively, looking for a word or phrase that jumps out at you. Receive this word or phrase as God’s nourishment for you today.

Meditate on this word or phrase. Ponder it in your mind. Reflect on what it might be saying to you. Perhaps repeat it over and over in your mind, allowing you to arrive at a place of stillness where you can hear God’s voice in the midst of those words.

Respond to this word or phrase. Write or say aloud your thoughts and feelings about this word or phrase. What does it mean to you? What do you want to say to God in exchange for this word or phrase?

Rest in silence and allow God’s grace to enter you….receiving what God wants you to receive from this meditation, allowing the word or phrase to nourish and become part of you.

 

Authentic Freedom

In Authentic Freedom, we understood that Jesus came to remind us of the truth of our Oneness with God. This Oneness applies to EVERYONE and everything. All of creation comes from God, is a part of God, and returns to God. From this perspective, salvation is the extent to which we have remembered this Oneness. While existing in the human condition, we may only get a glimpse of this Oneness, but with diligent practice, these glimpses increase and become more enduring. And, nothing and no one is denied access to these experiences of Oneness, experiencing glimpses of salvation in the midst of human condition, and enjoying the fullness of salvation once the human condition is released and we return in full recollection of our Oneness with God.

Where have you experienced glimpses of your Oneness with God?

How are you setting time aside for your spiritual practice so you can remember your Oneness with God and experience salvation in the midst of the human condition?

 

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The Fear of Rejection – Superhero Report

Superhero Report for the Week of October 26, 2014 

At this week’s Superhero Academy gatherings (Monday 6:30 – 8:30 and Tuesday 9-11 am), we discussed rejection – specifically, the fear of. In everyday life, and especially in claiming and engaging our Superhero gifts, we experience rejection.  In claiming our Superpowers, cultivating, and sharing them, we serve as a reflection to the rest of humanity of their unrealized potential.  This reflection serves to poke at their unrealized parts, which then initiates one of two reactions – the desire to stay and learn or the compulsion to run like hell. Second perhaps only to death, we fear our greatness.  Only the courageous and persistent and those willing to let go of the life they have known are able to realize their Superhero potential.  And when we do, it often ticks people off.  It is this fear of rejection that most often stands in the way of our ability to claim, cultivate and share our Superpowers. As a result, dealing with the fear of rejection is one of the final frontiers in the journey toward being a Superhero.

brokenopen

The fear of rejection ultimately arises out of the parts of ourselves that have forgotten we are love. In Authentic Freedom, I offer a formal process through which one is able to heal these areas of forgetfulness, returning us to our original wholeness.  I recently discovered there is a shortcut.  This shortcut is Ho-oponopono – the Hawaiian ritual of forgiveness.  At this week’s Superhero Academy, we learned and put this ritual in practice, specifically as a way of tending toward those places within us where we are resistant to our Superpowers.  Specifically related to the claiming and sharing of our Divine call and the use of our Superpowers (spiritual gifts), here is how it works:

  • Close your eyes and sit or rest in silence.
  • Bring to mind a gift, an invitation, a call that has revealed itself to you – perhaps it’s an idea or a dream you have always wanted to pursue but haven’t yet.
  • As you think about this gift, etc. become aware of any areas of constriction that arise in your body – feelings of tightness, tension.
  • Be aware of any emotions, thoughts, images that arise, or the voice of doubt, condemnation, judgment telling you all the reasons you should not or cannot pursue this dream.
  • Recognize that voice of resistance, doubt, etc. as a part of yourself that has forgotten it is love.
  • Silently or aloud, say/pray to that part of yourself the Ho’oponopono prayer formula:

I’m sorry.

Please forgive me.

I love you.

Thank you.

  • Continue this prayer until you feel the resistance in you change, relax or release.

 

In short, the Ho’oponopono prayer recognizes that we are doing harm to ourselves when we deny our Soul its call, its purpose. As such, saying I’m sorry, etc. is our highest self offering unconditional love and healing to the part of us that is afraid and feeling unloved.

In the coming week, try this formula in every situation where you feel resistant to your dreams and see what happens!

 

 

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Conquering Co-Dependency – Learning to Love Ourselves

Today’s blog addresses the issue of co-dependency – the tendency to believe it is our job to make other people happy and that it is their job to make us happy in return.  Specifically, we explore the ways in which we are willing to give ourselves away in the hopes of earning another person’s love.

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Patterns

As human beings, we are hardwired to seek out connection and companionship.  We have learned that in order to survive and to thrive, we need each other.  Unfortunately, a distortion often arises in the way we learn to make connections and that distortion is co-dependency.  Co-dependency arises out of the false perception that we are not love – that love has to be earned and can be taken away.  As such, in our search for connection, we try to make other people happy so that they will “love” us.  In our attempts to make other people happy, we give parts of ourselves away.  Additionally, we unconsciously agree to carry the burden of their fears, anxieties, insecurities, and the unhealed wounds of their past.  We know that we have done this when we jump at the first sign of another’s distress and rush toward them hoping to make it better, all the while believing that somehow the other person’s distress is somehow our fault.

Not Our Fault

The truth is, in these situations, the other person’s distress is not our fault at all – we have simply been conditioned to take responsibility for other people’s fears.  When your partner is working on a project and breaks a piece of glass and begins hollering and cursing and you feel the pull in the center of your gut to run toward them in the hopes of making it better, you have taken on THEIR anxiety and frustration.  Their anxiety is NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS.  When you share our dreams or experience a great success and a friend drops a doubt bomb on you, this is a reflection of their jealousy and the guilt they are feeling for not pursuing their own dreams, and yet, you agree to carry their jealousy and guilt by feeling doubtful and unsure about your dreams. Their jealousy and guilt are not your fault. When our child has anxiety about fitting in and believes this anxiety will be quelled with a new wardrobe that we know they don’t really need and is outside our budget, yet we agree to go anyway – we have given into another’s fears.  Their anxiety about fitting in is not our fault and will not be healed by blowing our budget on the “latest trends.”

Healing These Patterns

The reason we give into other people’s anxieties and fears is because there is a tiny part of ourselves that has forgotten that we are love(d).  In order to change these patterns, we need to heal the part of ourselves that have forgotten that they are love.  First we become our own witness.  We pay attention to every situation where we are tempted to take on the burden of someone else’s guilt, fear, jealousy, weakness, anxiety, unhappiness, frustration, anger, hatred, ignorance, etc. etc. etc.  Then we STOP doing it.  We stop giving ourselves away and instead take responsibility ONLY for our own fear, anxiety, doubt, weakness, etc. etc. etc.  Finally we initiate a great act of love toward ourselves. In tomorrow’s Superhero Report, I will share a simple spiritual practice to help you do just this – conquer co-dependency while learning to love yourself. In the meantime, here is a poem to help prime the pump:

I Did Nothing Wrong

Tired of carrying the burden of your unacknowledged guilt.

I did nothing wrong.

Your unhealed wounds and unacknowledged fears,

The way my presence awakens in you the truths you’ve spent a lifetime avoiding,

The overwhelming weakness you feel yet refuse to acknowledge ,

Your inability to acknowledge, let alone, manage your anxiety,

The insecurities that make you crave co-dependency…

Are not my fault.

I did nothing wrong.

I know you know the web you’ve woven and the bed you’ve recently made –

These also, are not my fault,

Neither is the shame you feel in knowing that I know.

I did nothing wrong!

For years, I agreed to carry your guilt, your shame, your unhealed wounds

and unacknowledged fears –

The scapegoat for every fear my presence, lifestyle and choices trigger in you.

It’s not my fault.

I did nothing wrong.

And now…I give it back to you.

copyright 2014  Lauri Ann Lumby

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Healing a Wounded Heart – Book Review

Beth (Elizabeth) Heuer is a dear friend and a woman I am grateful to have on my team.  I have journeyed with Beth, watching on the periphery, as her gifts as a writer have emerged and blossomed.  The release of her first book is a birthing of epic proportions and I am honored to support the sharing of her important message, namely, that the effects of an abusive childhood can not only be overcome, but transcended when one applies themselves diligently to the path of recovery. The end result being the restoration of their original and divine nature as healthy, whole and complete.  Thank you Beth for sharing your story so others too may also find joy!  You can find Beth’s book HERE. 

HealingaWoundedHeart

Healing a Wounded Heart by Elizabeth Ruth Heuer

Book review

With fierce and courageous honesty, Elizabeth Ruth Heuer creates a new Everyman, or rather, Everywoman. In telling her own story Heuer provides the context for how abuse happens and the dysfunctional thinking and behaviors that arise out of growing up with abuse.  In sharing the tools that helped her to heal and to be restored to her original nature as healthy, gifted and whole, Heuer provides hope for all who have suffered the pain and aftermath of childhood physical, emotional, verbal or sexual abuse.  Excruciatingly familiar, Healing a Wounded Heart speaks to female and male alike in telling the sadly universal story of childhood dysfunction leading to “a divided life,” and the opportunity, if so chosen, to heal the wounds of past abuse so that one might enjoy the freedom and fulfillment of a whole and unified life.

 

BethHeuerElizabeth (Beth) Heuer is the Emeritus Director of Human Resources at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, having been instrumental in moving three departments to the strategic level of the institution within higher education. A focus of Heuer’s 42 year professional life was helping others develop, learn, and become more self-reliant and joyful in their lives. Now retired, Elizabeth’s passions include reducing poverty and domestic abuse. As a founding member of the Women Who Care–Greater Oshkosh organization, Heuer hopes to make an immediate and significant impact on the community through building relationships among women, resulting in a community where all people can pursue a healthy and dignified life.

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Learning How to Love

This week’s Authentic Freedom Virtual Church service is LIVE.  The theme this week is LOVE.  Specifically – Jesus’ commandments – love God, love our neighbor.  The trick is that in order to do #1 and #2, we first have to love ourselves.  This week’s service features a spiritual practice which will help us do just that – learn to love and be loving toward ourselves.

Attend this week’s service HERE. 

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Resistance Part II – Superhero Report

Superhero Academy – We Are Here to Heal and Change the World.

Coyote Trickster

Coyote Trickster

 The Superhero Academy’s headquarters are in Oshkosh, WI.

We have two meeting options Mondays 6:30 – 8:30 pm or Tuesdays 9 – 11 am.

To learn more, click HERE.

 

At this week’s Superhero Academy gatherings, we covered resistance. Resistance is a force of the false-self/ego in its desire to keep us fearful and small.  Resistance shows up EVERY time we draw close to or dare to be open to the call of our Soul.  Soul is the place within us that knows, without a doubt, our purpose on this plane.  Soul is the uniquely creative way in which we are gifted to find meaning and purpose in our lives and through which we are fulfilled in contributing to the betterment of our world.  Soul is the LAST thing the ego wants from us because Soul means the death of part of the ego.  The ego wants fear, small, limited, constricting.  The Soul wants freedom, expansiveness, and fulfillment.

Resistance shows up in any number of ways – fear itself, excuses, distractions, inner and outer perceived obstacles, boredom, confusion, mental, emotional, and physical pain. Resistance also shows up in our material world as struggles, challenges, things falling apart. At its core, resistance is about FEAR.  As such, it is helpful in working through resistance to FIRST identify the fear that is driving.  To facilitate that process, the Superheroes reviewed the seven core spiritual (universal) fears as outlined in Authentic Freedom. 

  • There is not enough
  • I have nothing significant to contribute
  • I can’t live as my most authentic self
  • I am not loved (I will be rejected)
  • I am not free to express my truth
  • I do not know my truth or my path
  • I am alone/I have to do it alone

The Superheroes then participated in a meditation process that facilitated the identification of part of the Soul – a call, invitation, gift that is seeking attention and cultivation. Then, the Superheroes entertained all the voices of resistance that sought to derail their quest of their gifts.  Through a flash-journaling exercise, the Superheroes wrote down all the reasons, fears, excuses for NOT pursuing their gift.  Then they identified which of the above seven fears was at the root of their resistance.  Finally, we learned and engaged in the practice of Tonglen to help facilitate the release of these fears.

Tonglen – a mindfulness practice for moving through fears and painful emotions:

  • Be attentive to when you are feeling fear.
  • If you are able, identify which of the seven universal fears you are feeling.
  • Allow yourself to experience the fear.
  • Draw your awareness to your physical body, specifically where in your body you are feeling this fear.
  • Breathe in the fear toward the place you are feeling the fear.
  • Breathe out from the place of fear, visualizing yourself sending love into the world from that fear.

 

Through this practice, we discovered that the most common fear that arose in the Superheroes in response to their gifts was the fear of rejection. This will be the theme of next week’s gathering.

If you have always felt that you were here for a reason, but perhaps didn’t know what that reason was….If you want to change the world but don’t know how, or have felt alone in this desire….The Superhero Academy might be for you. To learn more go HERE or call Lauri Lumby (920) 230 – 1313 or email lauri@yourspiritualtruth.com for more information.

 

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