He broke your heart, violated your trust, betrayed your confidence, ignored your needs, and disrespected you. When you tell your friends, they shake their heads, clucking, shaming. You’re better off without him. He doesn’t deserve you. You can do better than him. You make up a story, one that casts him as the villain and you as the victim of his dastardly deeds. It’s a good story, the kind they make movies about. You feel righteous when you kick him to the curb. You did the right thing, they all say. There’s lots more fish in the sea.
But deep down, there’s hurt underneath the anger. And beneath the hurt lies Something Larger, something that understands why he did it, something you’d have to reckon with if you acknowledged it, something that disrupts your story. So you stick to your story, ignoring what lies beyond it. It’s easier that way. You have to protect yourself, after all.
But I ask you this. What would Love do?
My next book The Fear Cure: Cultivating Courage As Medicine For The Body, Mind & Soul comes out February 24! What inspired me to write The Fear Cure? After writing Mind Over Medicine, I had a post-publishing epiphany. I realized that it's all well and good to teach the 6 Steps to Healing Yourself, to invite people to do the deep transformational work that makes the body ripe for miracles and facilitates “spontaneous” remissions. But even if people are intuitive enough to tune into what their bodies need in order to heal, and even if they’re wise enough to write The Prescription for themselves, way too often, fear gets in the way. You may know what needs to change in your life, but if you’re not courageous enough to act upon your inner guidance, you’re likely to stay sick—and stuck.
That’s when I realized (with a gulp) that I needed to write a book about fear and courage.
(You can preorder it here.)
A lot of people think of fear as a painful, disruptive emotion, and they may be aware of how fear is holding them back in their personal or professional lives. But few people, including physicians, are aware that fear predisposes you to illness and interrupts the healing process. In The Fear Cure, I share scientific data proving that fear and disease are linked and that fear can out-picture as heart disease, cancer, autoimmune diseases, chronic pain syndromes, and even the common cold.
But fear doesn’t just make you sick. It limits your ability to fully step into your soul’s purpose in what poet Mary Oliver calls “this one wild and precious life.” Perhaps even more importantly, it keeps us stuck in a cultural world view that will destroy our planet—and us along with it—if we don't WAKE UP.
In The Fear Cure, I share what I call the "Four Fearful Assumptions," beliefs we have adopted that contribute to our fear-mongering culture and lead us to make choices based on a scarcity mentality, and these choices not sabotage your efforts to be happy, healthy, and thriving; these choices harm us all.
I alluded to the most important book I read in 2014 in last week’s blog about ending the Story of Separation, the cultural story that has us believing that we are discrete blobs of carbon matter that need to fight for our own self interest in order to survive and thrive, even if it means harming other people or destroying Mother Gaia herself. But I want to be more explicit in sharing with you The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible, a book I just finished reading after meeting author/speaker/counterculture revolutionary Charles Eisenstein, who shared a stage with me at the Uplift Festival in Byron Bay, Australia.
I probably read about a hundred books in 2014 (for real.) Some highlights were Elizabeth Lloyd Mayer’s Extraordinary Knowing, Gregg Levoy’s Vital Signs: The Nature and Nurture of Passion, Sarah Drew’s Gaia Codex, Stephen Mitchell’s Jesus: What He Really Said And Did, Adyashanti’s The End of Your World, Larry Dossey’s One Mind, Kelly Turner’s Radical Remission, Alberto Villoldo’s Dance Of The Four Winds, and Sogyal Rinpoche’s The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying.
But of all the books I’ve read this year, The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible stands out as something extraordinary, one of those books you read only a few times in a lifetime, the kind that leaves you highlighting every page and feeling forlorn when you finish it because it connects you to something deep and true, something you forgot you needed like oxygen, something you grieve when you read the last word, even though the words live on in your heart like mustard seeds.
Part of what I love about this book is that, while a lot of spiritual books help us tap into Source and lend us an experience of connection to this wellspring of love on a personal level, few combine spiritual principles with sacred activism. This book is not just about doing your own personal and spiritual growth work; it’s about how BEING love in the world tends to activate you to DO something that creates real change. This kind of inspired action arises not from the energy of resistance, anger, judgment, victimization, or separation which can often fuel another form of activism. It allows you to DO simply by BEING love. Even the separation between BEING and DOING becomes irrelevant. Action naturally arises as a side effect of how much you recognize your interconnectedness with all beings.
If even 1% of the humans on this planet would read this book, perhaps we could change the world. Maybe it wouldn’t even take 1%. Maybe it only takes YOU.
As we embark upon the journey of 2015, I am dreaming of a world in which we remember, as the indigenous people do, that our Story of Separation is only an illusion, that we are all connected, not just to other people, but to the plants, the animals, the mountains and rivers and oceans, that we cannot harm one another, we cannot violate nature, without directly harming ourselves. What would a world governed by our certainty of Oneness be like?
I just had the unspeakable privilege of living in such an experiment while spending most of December in Australia, preparing to speak at the Uplift Festival amidst a group of modern day spiritual teachers, indigenous elders, and sacred activists. The experience was so profound, moving, and hopeful that I was launched into a phase of grief after leaving our bubble of Oneness in Byron Bay. Even though I know this shift towards Oneness is already underway, and more and more of us are acting from a space of kindness, generosity, compassion, appreciation, and love, I still found it hard to walk through the airport on the way home and feel the pain of the remains of the separation story among us.
I haven’t written much about it publicly because it’s been so intense and confusing and extraordinary, but for almost a year, I have been involved in what others describe to me as a “twin flame” or “soul twin” relationship. Dennis and I are not a “couple” in any traditional sense of the word. He’s a gay man. I’m a straight woman. Both of us have recently experienced divorces from our partners, so we are technically “single,” but a number of factors keep us from getting involved in a typical romantic relationship.
And yet, we are both learning more about love than either of us ever had in our other conventional relationships. Before last January, I had never heard of a “twin flame” or a “soul twin.” Of course, the term “soulmate” gets bantered about, but I’m told this is not the same thing. A soulmate may be someone with whom you’ve had a deep soul connection and perhaps been involved with in past lives. Such a relationship may have a lot of karma attached to it, so such relationships can be quite intense and deeply loving.
But apparently (I say apparently because my ego mind still argues about whether such a relationship is really “real”), twin flames are different and much more rare. I can’t quite grok people’s explanations of what a twin flame is. Some say you’re one soul split and incarnated into two bodies. Others say you’ve just had many many past lives together so the link between you is like high speed internet through a direct cable. Some say you’re from the same soul family in the spirit realm, but you rarely incarnate together, that one partner of such a relationship usually stays in the spirit realm to act as a guide for the other, and if both parts of the pair incarnate together, it’s because they’ve been called into spiritual service in an extraordinary way. None of these explanations make sense to my rational doctor’s mind. And yet, something feels true about this with Dennis and I. The link between us feels like more than an emotional bond or an energetic cord. It feels skeletal.