Those of you who have been following my blog and reading what I post on Facebook know what a profound influence Tosha Silver has had on my life and my work. The way in which we met was magical. Christiane Northrup and I had been teaching a class to the Whole Health Medicine Institute (we’re enrolling WHMI now, in case you feel called to join us!) Christiane insisted that all of us go out right that second and buy Tosha’s book Outrageous Openness. I bought it instantly and was halfway through reading it the next day, when I was on a plane to LA to film a documentary, when I got online on the airplane, looked up Tosha’s website, realized she lived right across the San Francisco Bay from me, and decided to write her a gushing fan letter. It went something like, “OMG, you don’t know who I am, but I’m in love with your book, and I live in San Francisco too, and we should . . . um . . . totally be BFF’s!” I signed up for her newsletter list because I knew that whatever Tosha was drinking, I wanted a Big Gulp of it.
So you know how when you sign up for someone’s newsletter, you get instructed to go to your email to verify the subscription. Well . . . I did. And lo and behold, there was an email from Tosha there, saying, “Hey, I never do this. But I’m about to teach the first workshop I’ve taught in 7 years, and I got this hit that you were supposed to be there, so I’m going to sign you up for my newsletter list if that’s okay.”
Now I had just pressed send on my email 30 seconds ago, mind you. My jaw was on the floor.
Holy crap. How did she know?
I did attend that workshop, and what I experienced there gave me the material for the last chapter of my next book The Anatomy of a Calling, which will be published December 29, 2015 with Rodale. In short, Tosha changed my life, and now she can change yours with her new book. I wrote the foreword to Tosha’s next book Change Me Prayers (order it here), and I wanted to share my foreword with you here. In case you’re in the Bay Area, you can attend Tosha’s launch event, where I’ll be cheering her on from the audience. The event is May 19 at 7:00 p.m. PT at the Oakland Center for Spiritual Living, 5000 Clarewood Drive, Oakland, CA. (Get details about the live event with Tosha and other book tour events here).
Lissa’s foreword of Change Me Prayers:
When we first met a year and a half ago, Tosha changed my life.
Ever since I read Tosha’s first book, Outrageous Openness, I’ve tried to make my life a devotional act of offering my whole being to the Divine Beloved. This is something I work on daily. At least a dozen times a day, I catch myself trying to control what happens in my life. I can tell I’m evolving, though, because it takes only moments to remember that something Larger can orchestrate life’s symphony much more artfully than my ego ever could. The practices Tosha shares have radically changed my existence. Previously, I was chasing what I thought was the holy grail, only to realize it’s inside my own heart.
Let me show you how this has worked in my own life in a profound and personal way:
How I dealt with my divorce is just one of many miracles I’ve experienced since choosing to live from a place of deep surrender. If you make the same choice, you too will experience the trust that it’s not only safe to live this way, it’s actually where your ultimate safety lies.
After twelve years together, my husband and I made the difficult decision to divorce. For a while, we stayed in the same house to co-parent our daughter. But the time came when we had to face the uncomfortable realities of separating. Despite my highest best intentions, I witnessed my ego’s temper tantrums. I lost sight of creating a settlement to honor and respect the man I’d loved and instead focused on protecting myself.
I’d intended our divorce to be an offering to God. We prayed to be guided to the highest good. Even so, in the heat of debate, I forgot who I was. Luckily, I remembered Tosha, and asked her for help.
“Here’s what often works with folks who are divorcing. Just acknowledge that 100% of these assets belong to God, then ask to be shown the perfect settlement as stewards of the money, not the owners. It makes a world of difference. Once you completely offer everything to the Divine, the right actions will become clear. Your inner self will know what to do. Though your ego will argue that you should defend yourself, surrender actually has nothing to do with passivity. The act of offering often favors generosity and a win-win solution. But you don’t have to figure it out; you’ll be guided! Even if the Divine moves you to give more than the ego would like, don’t forget. . . . She could replace that money ten times over, if it’s Her Will.”
As I considered her guidance, something tense and stuck relaxed inside me. My breath opened up. My shoulders dropped. I could feel the knot in my solar plexus give way.
“This can be hard to do . . . But if you completely offer your assets to God, you’ll be guided to the perfect settlement. You’ll need to eliminate the word ‘my’ from your vocabulary. Instead of ‘my money,’ ‘my house,’ or even ‘my daughter,’ it’s God’s money, house, and little girl. Believing that all of these things belong to you is the ultimate illusion. I remind myself of this every day. If you do this, you’ll feel like you dropped a huge weight, and a waterfall of abundance can come from places you never dreamed possible. You can do this, Lissa. It’s your graduate school of surrender!”
I felt completely busted and humbled by my arrogance.
It was so clear, so obvious: I wanted God to choose how these blessings got distributed to serve the highest good. Though I felt so READY, I didn’t know how to control my angry thoughts and impulses. My small self tended to take over with guarded, stingy, judgmental thoughts.
“Don’t beat up the small self for its tantrum; that’s what small selves do, including mine. Just give that scared little kid a hug. She’s simply frightened and feels threatened. Besides, you’ll never get the small self to surrender; it doesn’t know how to ask. Luckily you can ask God to do it through you with a Change Me Prayer.”
So I did.
“Change me into someone who can surrender this to Divine Will without defending or grasping.”
The minute I said it, I felt my heart open to this man I had loved for so long who had gifted me with the most beautiful daughter. My husband and I were finally able to look into each other’s eyes for the first time in months.
The next mediation meeting became the last one. Our angry energy dissipated and we hammered out an agreement that felt generous to us both in half an hour! Within a month of negotiating our settlement, I got a large and unexpected royalty check—for exactly the amount I had agreed to pay in the settlement.
The story of my divorce is just one of many miracles I’ve experienced since choosing to live my life from a place of surrender. Tosha’s book is chock full of stories like this.
Change Me Prayers will delight you, comfort you, make you laugh, and touch your heart. But it doesn’t stop there. It shows you how to change from a person controlled by the ego to one through which the Divine can effortlessly flow. This wonderful book not only describes what can happen when you let the Divine take the lead, it also gives you the tools to make this a daily practice.
After lifetimes of letting the small self run your life, one finally comes to realize that it’s just a hungry ghost. Even if you meet the love of your life, pursue meaningful work, earn plenty of money, and achieve everything “you” ever wanted, the ego will always want more. That’s its nature.
But what CAN fill you completely is right here, right now, waiting to be let in.
If you’re finally ready, Tosha’s book will open you to receive this gift.
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