Barbara Marx Hubbard

012-front-thumbI have been blessed to know Barbara Marx Hubbard for nearly a decade now. Barbara has been mentor, teacher and friend to me over the years, and I feel so grateful that this brilliant, caring woman has been willing to play such a pivotal role in my spiritual evolution. I first met Barbara after I participated in a program called, “Gateway to Conscious Evolution,” a guided group-study program that offered the participants an empowered pathway to self-realization based on a blend of modern scientific understandings and ancient philosophical/spiritual realizations that Barbara had been gathering and weaving for many years. The Gateway program helped propel me through my own inner fears, self-limiting behaviors and life-negating beliefs by inspiring me to do the deep inner work that had been calling out to me—but that I’d been avoiding—for many years. I credit my spiritual awakening and journey into self-actualization in no small part to the tools and foundational support I received from Barbara’s teachings.

Of all the spiritual philosopher/teachers I’ve met, Barbara is perhaps the most gracious, open and exuberant of the bunch. Driven by her unending passion for life and deeply attuned to her personal mission, she continues to be a dynamic force for change well into her 80s. She coined the phrase “conscious evolution” several decades ago as a way of describing the quantum shift that appears to be occurring in human consciousness today, and has been promoting the concept of conscious evolution ever since.

The evolutionary shift of which Barbara speaks—from a narrow, ego-based and self-conscious perspective to an expanded, essence-based and whole-conscious perspective on life—may prove to be the key to our species’ ability to thrive into the future. The steady and growing emergence of this perspective within humanity offers us a radical new way of looking at the world, and helps us contextualize ourselves within the cosmos in a more loving and life-affirming way. That we appear to have a conscious ability to either embrace or reject this enhanced perspective points to our capacity, as self-aware and sentient life forms, to choose to experience ourselves as fully interconnected and engaged in a harmonious flow of life, or to remain entrenched in the belief that we are somehow separate from life and all else around us, thus possess a life we can “lose.”

Having explored the belief that we are separate from life—and from God—for many thousands of years, and having tested the theory that life is something we possess rather than the inherent truth of who and what we are, we’ve gained great wisdom. It’s time now for us to acknowledge the understandings we’ve gained through our intrepid exploration of self-aware consciousness, and to step boldly into a brand new human experiment. The question we now need to answer? What sort of world might we build if we embrace the realization that we are each integral living aspects of a vast, eternal, infinitely creative, intelligent, compassionate and purposeful living system? What sort of experience might we have if we choose to honor the fact that we are of God, in God and forever and always God…no matter what?

God, in this enhanced vision, refers to the whole of the universe, the life force, the implicate order, the zero point field, the Tao, the Great Spirit, Allah, or whatever other name we might wish to attribute to the infinite energy field out of which all things arise, and to which they all eventually return. It points to the fact that we are more than material star-stuff—we are in fact God-stuff, having a temporary human experience. To move through the world carrying this vision of ourselves as opposed to our earlier worldview that we were somehow cast off by God as flawed, problematic and disobedient “bad actors” changes everything. It’s like waking up to the realization that when a baby bird gets shoved out of its nest it’s not because the fledgling is considered unworthy by its parents, but because the fledgling has been deemed by its parents to be ready and able to advance on its own and become the best version of itself that it can become. What beauty lies in that perspective, and what freedom we gain to create and explore without shame, or guilt, or fear! What joy we feel when we relinquish our former self-limiting, hostile beliefs about who and what we are, and instead grant ourselves permission to test our capacities and push further into the universe with curiosity and wonder, confident that we will find some way to relate with whatever strange beings or worlds we may discover because we grasp that whatever we encounter will be made from the exact same God-stuff as we ourselves are made.

This reverent perspective and deep sense of connectedness changes everything. It encourages us to walk through the world with grace and ease. It also invites us to trust in the higher process of cosmic unfolding; to meet life with openness; to be courageous if we encounter something unknown; to be compassionate if we notice that others are suffering; to be kind in all of our daily interactions; to be patient while we learn more about our world and as others learn more about us, and to extend peace as our default mode of connecting with other aspects of this unified living flow.

What might our world look like once a majority of human beings view the world through the lens of interconnectedness rather than continued separation? Who can yet say? But what seems likely is that whatever eventually emerges will be something other than human in the classic definition, because the human condition that defines us today cannot support this expanded level of awareness about who we are and the universe we are within. Just as early hominids became homo sapiens sapiens, so too will homo sapiens sapiens eventually become homo universalis—similar to us today, yet evolved in a way that the difference will be obvious with the benefit of hindsight. Barbara’s mission in life has been to point the way toward this Great Turning, this cosmic birth of a new species, by encouraging each of us to birth this shift within ourselves.

I give thanks to Barbara Marx Hubbard for her decades of dedication to this evolutionary transformation of our species, as well as her willingness to shine such a bright and compassionate spotlight on this vital inner process. I honor her for inspiring countless others like me to take a similar journey into themselves that Barbara herself made back when she first discovered her holy life’s mission, so that we too could realize the truth about who we are, and what we are in.

 

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The Greatest Gifts

eileen-blog200x200As a writer, I’m deeply aware of how wonderful it feels to be contacted by someone who’s read my work and felt moved enough by my ideas to reach out and let me know how much I’ve touched them. That’s why, as a reader, I’ve personally never been shy about reaching out to those authors whose works have in turn touched my own heart, to let them know that their effort has not been in vain.

Some of my most treasured friendships have arisen from these connections. And of the countless times I’ve reached out to thank a writer, nearly all have responded with gratitude for having been well received. I suspect it’s because a writer’s life can be a lonely path. It may take years for a book to move through a writer’s mind, heart, hands and down onto the page, and from there to make it into printed form for consumption by the public. During that long and thankless time, we writers are typically plagued with bouts of self-doubt. We’re convinced our work will be unpublishable; our ideas will seem worthless or too mundane; our energy will have proved to be utterly wasted. We’re also occasionally accosted by people who – with the best of intentions – wonder aloud why we don’t go out and get ‘real’ jobs. Our friends and family members have been known to “helpfully” bury us beneath distressing statistics about the failure rates for new authors, and inundate us with articles that discuss how impossible it is to get readers to notice new books.

That’s why, for me, it always feels like a bit of a miracle whenever someone reaches out and bridges the time-space continuum that exists between that original struggle of my sometimes painful process and this place I am today, just to tap me on the shoulder and say, “Hey, you…great job. I loved your work. It moved me; I’m forever changed for having read this book. Thank you so much for having written it.”

In those precious, quiet moments of heartfelt reconnection with my own past efforts, I can at last feel vindicated for having stuck with a project; for not having chucked it during one of those dark and lonely periods when feedback was nonexistent, and when all I had to rely upon was my faltering faith in myself. Moments such as these are, at times, exactly what it takes to keep me going – to inspire me to sit down again and breathe life into yet another labored page.

We like to think of Muse Harbor as a place where we, as writers, are helping other writers reach new readers. As part of that commitment, one of our most sincere desires is to serve as a well-lit way station where those readers can connect with the writers who’ve moved them, and who have maybe even changed their lives for the better. So if you’ve read a book by one of our authors and have loved the message it sent, the story it told, or the characters that the author has breathed into life…please. Reach out and say so. I promise you, every writer feels an endless hunger to hear that. And don’t be surprised if you make a new friend for your efforts. As a person who toils in solitude, I know I’ve developed an appreciation for all of these human connections that nourish my soul. It’s a beautiful gift, and it’s free. All the greatest gifts are.

 

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The Vision Thing

eileen-blog200x200As the author of Sacred Economics: The Currency of Life, and as one of the three cofounders of Muse Harbor Publishing, it falls upon me to articulate The Vision Thing. This project landed in my inbox because my life’s work focuses on the exploration of new ways for people to be in healthy relationships with one another, and – by extension – with the larger living world that connects us all.

Perhaps it’s a happy accident, but we at Muse Harbor consider ourselves to be equals. We love each other unconditionally, and we treasure our personal friendships. Above all, we each honor the crazy, flawed, wonderful, brilliant, amazing, creative and unfathomable beings we are. We’re learning how to rely with gratitude upon the unique skills and talents that each of us offers without defining whose skills should be worth more. For us, being in a healthy relationship means the love will always matter more than the work; but when it’s time for work we serve each other as well as we possibly can. We do so because we’ve come to realize we need each other if any of us are to thrive.

Being in a healthy relationship also means we’re dedicated to serving you—our authors and readers—so you can get the most out of what we’re co-creating. We want our writers to be able to afford to keep on writing, and we want our readers to be able to access as many books as they care to read. Our low prices and high author payout rates have been designed to serve that purpose. We trust that if our writers succeed and our readers enjoy their books, we’ll do just fine.

When we sign a new author we do so because we love the material. We’re acknowledging that we trust in the author’s vision and ability to refine it, and feel confident we can add value to the project. And whenever you purchase a Muse Harbor book, know that we’re committed to ensuring you’ll be getting a book worth reading.

Our favorite motto remains: “No fun, no do.” We strive to discover if the trust, friendship and openness we’re fostering in our new business model will birth a higher degree of excellence than does the decaying corporate model, which thrives by provoking fear and stress in people to induce greater productivity…but at what price? Perhaps joy, passion and gratitude will prove better fuels for the engine of human creativity over the long run.

We’ve made it our mission to build a safe harbor for authors, yet we’re conscious of the fact that we’ve plunged headlong into the oceanic abyss of a new business model without protective gear, so drowning remains a distinct possibility. We don’t pretend to have all the answers for what makes a successful company, or what compels a reader to select this book over that one. But we do love to tackle new challenges, so testing this kinder, gentler business model makes waking up every day a joy for us all (at least most of the time!)

I hope these words have helped illuminate what we’re attempting to do. Perhaps, if nothing else, they may move you to check out the books we’re currently offering. For some time now we’ve been searching for a pithy way to describe who we are, and what we hope to achieve. How about this: “Buy a book; save an author. Buy two books; support a new paradigm.”

[note color=”#a8d8ff”]You can find more of Eileen Workman’s posts on Reality Sandwich.[/note] Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather