Radical Surrender Leading to Freedom

 

As we celebrate the first of July and the new moon in Capricorn that marks this day, I breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy a day (weekend) of pause after a six-month intensive of radical surrender.  The past six months have been a DOOZIE!

As we entered the beginning of 2015, I heard quite clearly the Divine invitation to LET GO.  I KNEW with every fiber of my being that I was being cleared of everything that was not supportive of the purpose for which I was placed in this world.  I KNEW it would be a time of letting go and releasing.  I just had no idea what I was being asked to let go of….or for what I was letting it go.  There was no carrot at the end of the stick calling me forth – just SHEER BLIND FAITH that if I was being invited into such radical surrender that there must be something amazing at the end of the journey.

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Letting go

And let me tell you, looking back on the past six months, the letting go was ENORMOUS and far greater than I ever thought possible.  I was invited to be willing to let go of EVERYTHING – and that meant EVERYTHING.  I knew the invitation didn’t necessarily mean I would have to let go of everything – but that I must be WILLING to do so.  Thankfully, the things most important to me (my children, my friends, my family) still remain, but the things I was asked to release – if you had asked me to do so a year ago, I might have (would have) said no.  At this point in my journey, however, I had grown weary of clinging, exhausted from the effort of trying and beyond frustrated with all the failed efforts.  I no longer cared what God wanted from me….I just wanted to serve in whatever way I was being called….even if that meant giving up everything I had come to believe about myself and my call in this life.  I placed myself and my life in God’s hands and said – “Here.  Take all of it.  Take what you need to take from me.  I give up.  I surrender.  It’s all yours.  And if somewhere along the line there is something I need to know…let me know.”

The amazing thing about radical surrender, is that yes, many, many, many things fall away; but as they are falling away (if we are willing) we are able to see how silly our attachment to those things has been.  We see how truly unnecessary these things are to our lives – especially when we see how they have hindered our ability to love.  And, as we are letting go, we are not left empty.  Instead, we are being cleared and emptied so that we can be filled – filled with what God wants for and of us – not what our tiny little minds think we want for ourselves.  For example, some of the things my mind thought would be good for me,  God thought better of it and invited me to let these things go:

  • My long-held desire to reform the Catholic Church (I let that one go a LONG time ago).
  • My desire to have my novel become a best-seller.
  • My wish to become a famous and best-selling author.
  • My attachment to the vision of myself as a writer, artist and rockstar.
  • My desire to reach a global audience and to become the next Marianne Williamson.
  • My desire for a specific annual income.
  • My desire to become an internet sensation and to launch a global academy.
  • My vision of traveling the world speaking to packed houses on topics of self-actualization and world change (the funny thing about panic attacks is that global travel no longer sounds like such a great idea!).

A Better Plan

Instead, God said, “Lauri, let these things go.  You are already exactly where you need to be.  Remember the medicine of mouse (my power animal) – small things making a big impact! Your audience is right here in your own backyard.  Stop seeking outside for what you already have here.  Plant yourself here.  Get more involved in the community and watch your efforts bear fruit.”

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Who knew?  So I suddenly find myself seeing all the ways I can connect with the larger community.  I suddenly see all the people who already know me and are aware of what I do and the good it brings to the community.  Opportunities are suddenly falling into my lap that are reflective of my gifts and supportive of my needs.  Again…who knew?????

Radical surrender is not an easy task and I am grateful to have some breathing room as I rest after so much letting go.  But as I am learning, surrender is totally worth it when the reward is greater than what we ever could have imagined for ourselves!  (More on that later this week!)

 

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Relationship Support

As we usher in the new world, a new model of intimate human relationship is being called forth.  In the new world we move beyond co-dependency (looking for the other to complete us) to interdependency, or what I call Beloved (or Sacred) Partnership.

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Beloved Partnership is known by two healthy and whole individuals (or at the very least, two working toward wholeness) who are coming together in partnership as sources of mutual honor, respect and support for each other.  In Beloved Partnership, both partners work toward achieving their own greatness and reaching their fullest potential, while supporting the other in doing the same.

Abraham Maslow (Motivation and Personality, 1970, pp. 181- 202), identified the following as characteristics of beloved partnership (what he called the self-actualized relationship):

  • A partnership where there is a mutual giving and receiving of love, both parties are equally able and willing to engage in both giving and receiving.
  • A healthy sexuality rooted in and reflective of love – more creative, ecstatic, orgasmic and fulfilling, yet also less about attachment. It is not a needy kind of intimacy, but instead is mutually fulfilling.
  • Pooling of needs – your needs, wants, desires, become mine and visa versa – such that there becomes one hierarchy of needs with two people seeking after their fulfillment.
  • Fun, merriment, joy, spontaneity, elation, feelings of well-being.
  • Mutual honor and respect of the other’s individual gifts, talents, drive, passions, interests, temperament, etc.
  • Mutual, authentic admiration, wonder and awe.
  • Detachment and Individuality – able to be in relationship without compromising one’s own individuality.

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Barbara Marx Hubbard (Conscious Evolution, 2015, pp. 238 – 239) says this about Beloved Partnership (what she called the co-creative couple):

Now we become the co-creative couple, which begins when both partners achieve within themselves at least the beginning of a balance between the masculine and feminine, the animus and the anima.  It begins when the woman’s initiative and vocational need is received in love by the feminine receptivity of her partner.  When she is loved for her more masculine side, she falls in love with the man’s feminine aspect, for what she needs is the nurturance of her own strength and creativity.  She loves him for his receptivity. He no longer has to prove himself by control and domination.  He can bring forth his own creativity without aggression.  And she can express her strength without fear of losing him.  Whole being joins with whole being, recreating the family at the next stage of evolution.  Same-sex couples experience a similar process of integration and joining to emancipate each other (p. 238).

Authentic Freedom Academy provides support for both new couples hoping to build Beloved Partnership and for existing couples who find themselves at the stage of needing to re-negotiate a relationship that may have been established on the former model of co-dependency (wanting the other to complete us).

To learn more about Beloved Partnership support, contact Lauri Ann Lumby (920) 230-1313 or email lauri@authenticfreedomacademy.com.

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Authentic Freedom Business Consulting

Spiritual Entrepreneurialship

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As we welcome in the new world, a new way of doing business is being called forth, one that is centered in unity-consciousness, reflective of our own unique gifts, and in service to the betterment of the world.  This new way of doing business brings integration and balance to both the feminine and masculine approaches to creativity and manifestation – one that is intuitive and thoughtful, receptive and active, visionary and practical, honoring what is known while welcoming change.  Those called to the new paradigm of business are pioneers and innovators in their respective fields, or may be creating new fields not yet imagined.  One might identify this new model of business spiritually-centered servant leadership, or spiritual entrepreneurialship.

Authentic Freedom Academy provides one-on-one consulting to those called to spiritually-centered servant leadership, or spiritual entrepreneurialship.   Authentic Freedom Academy’s business consulting services employ:

  • One-on-one consulting
  • Mindfulness, creativity and intuitive practices
  • Proven methods of discernment
  • Practical support in applying the guidance received through these practices.

To learn more about Authentic Freedom Academy’s Business Consulting services, contact Lauri Ann Lumby (920) 230-1313 or lauri@authenticfreedomacademy.com.

 

 

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The Larger Message of Marriage Equality

LauripridephotoA great victory was won this week when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of marriage equality.  While this ruling is about the right of all people to enter into the legal contract of marriage and enjoy the benefits therein, it is about much more than that.  Ultimately, it is a testament to the healing and transformation that is taking place on our planet.  We are evolving past duality-based consciousness toward embracing ONENESS.  In other words, we are no longer male, female, straight, gay, black, white, American, foreign, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Pagan, Atheist……WE ARE ALL ONE.  We are moving beyond separation, judgment, ignorance (as in lack of knowledge about “the other”), and fear and moving more and more fully toward LOVE, compassion, and understanding.  The more we move away from separation and toward oneness, the more we will enjoy the fruits of this transition and those are nothing short of PEACE!

Today I am happy to celebrate Marriage Equality….and even more happy to celebrate the movement toward ONENESS!

 

 

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Our Greatest Enemy

As we examine the seemingly increasing states of violence in the world (are they increasing…or does the media just make it look that way?), it is easy to point the finger of blame – it’s his fault, it’s her fault, it’s their fault.  We are quick to make other people the enemy when in fact, we are the greatest enemy.

“WHAT…..how am I the enemy?” you might ask.  It’s simple.  WE are the greatest enemy because we do more harm to ourselves than we ever thought of doing to another human being.  Hatred toward others ALWAYS begins with our hatred of ourselves.  When Jesus said, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” he wasn’t issuing a commandment, he was making an observation.  We do love our neighbor in direct proportion to the love we have toward ourselves.  When we know ourselves and are comfortable in our own skin, we can’t help but treat others with kindness, compassion and respect.  When we judge and condemn our selves for every little thing – how our hair looks today, what we are wearing, trying to hide our insecurities and imperfections from the world, etc. we judge the world likewise.  When we cling to same and hold out for predictable, safe and orderly, the truth of our chaotic and unpredictable world makes us feel unsafe.  Instead of loving ourselves in spite of our unease, we turn the finger of blame outward – “It’s their fault the world is in the state that it is in.”  We’re busy shaming ourselves for being too afraid to ask for our needs to be met, so we lose our patience with our kids and yell at them for being….kids.

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We are the enemy in all the ways we criticize, condemn, judge, shame, belittle ourselves and for all the ways we suppress the uncomfortable feelings within ourselves (anxiety, fear, sorrow, anger, resentment) because we judge them as “bad”.  We are the enemy when we do these things, first, by doing harm to ourselves and second, for all the ways these feelings come out sideways in anger, hatred, intolerance, impatience, condemnation, toward others.

Healing the violence in our world starts by healing the violence within ourselves.  We do this by learning to love ourselves.  Here is a simply little practice you might try to begin that process of loving yourself without condition so that you are no longer the enemy to yourself first, and then to others.

Below is a prayer you may all be familiar with – The Prayer of St. Francis.  In this practice, instead of using the prayer as intercessory (directed outward toward God or toward the world), turn it inward.  With every phrase, turn the words toward yourself.  (Here is a musical accompaniment for the song if you wish to attend to this practice through music…the prayer itself starts at 3:39 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wrcn85_MPYI )

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.

Where there is hatred let me sow love

Where there is injury, pardon

Where there is doubt, faith

Where there is despair, hope

Where there is darkness, light

Where there is sadness, joy

Oh Divine Master grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console

To be understood as to understand

To be loved as to love

For it is in giving (to ourselves) that we receive

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned

It is in dying that we are born into eternal life.

May we all learn to love ourselves without condition so that we can love the world in the same way – slowly and surely turning a world of fear into a world of love!

Lauri Ann Lumby, OM, MATS provides programs and services to support you in your journey of self- love and self-actualization.  Call (920) 230-1313 or email lauri@authenticfreedomacademy.com to learn more.

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National Event – The Many Faces of Mary Magdalene

Please join me in sharing the news of the first ever national, month-long event dedicated to Mary Magdalene.  Details below! 

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THE MANY FACES OF MARY MAGDALENE

First ever national, month-long event

July 7-August 3 in Houston, Texas

 

Brigid’s Place is pleased to announce The Many Faces of Mary Magdalene, a monumental, first-ever, month-long festival held at Christ Church Cathedral and The Jung Center from July 7-August 3, 2015.  The festival will be open to the public and the offerings will include lectures, workshops, and a month-long art show in the Cloister Gallery at Christ Church Cathedral.  A complete list of programs is below.

For centuries, Mary Magdalene has been portrayed as the penitent sinner or as a weeping woman scorned in the western world because of a homily given by Pope Gregory in 591 C.E. This vision of Mary belies her true identity, and this summer, The Many Faces of Mary Magdalene, will reshape the legacy of Mary Magdalene and tell her true story. Through offerings of art, historical scholarship, spiritual practices, and dynamic teaching, a contemporary vision of the Magdalene will emerge capable of empowering us all.  In a world that hasn’t yet learned to respect all peoples, the story of Mary Magdalene can lead the way.

An important component of the Festival will be an art exhibit that will encourage both artists and viewers to look at Mary Magdalene differently — as the beloved disciple of Jesus and a woman of great wisdom and power.  Artists nationwide are encouraged to submit works of art to Re-IMAGE-ing Mary Magdalene;  there will be cash prizes and the deadline to enter is June 1, 2015. The art exhibit will run from July 7-August 3, 2015 with a launch party on Friday, July, 10th from 7-9pm.

The featured event of the festival will be the Mary Magdalene Presentation and Workshop with Dr. Kayleen Asbo on July 23-25, 2015. Internationally renowned lecturer Dr. Kayleen Asbo, cultural historian, musician, writer and teacher, will weave together myth, history, and the arts with experiential learning during a two evening presentation and labyrinth walk, followed by a day-long workshop. Dr. Asbo has been a guest lecturer and presenter at Oxford University in England, the Assisi Institute of Depth Psychology Conference in Italy, and the Graduate Theological Union in Berkley among many other prestigious institutions. She presents a fascinating account of Mary Magdalene, combining a scholarly approach clothed in mysticism. Brigid’s Place will partner with The Jung Center for the Thursday night presentation.

Rev. Betty Adam, founder of Brigid’s Place and author of The Magdalene Mystique: Living the Spirituality of Mary Today, believes that The Gospel of Mary – a historical document that was found in a Cairo marketplace in 1896 — has significant implications for spiritual seekers hungry for a new kind of spirituality today. She says, “Written in the early part of the second century in the framework of an ancient world, the Gospel Mary Magdalene is a Gospel of our deepest roots, filled with fresh insights for us today.  It offers a Jesus who teaches that nature is good and that our true nature is rooted in the Good, a Jesus who greets his disciples with his peace and boldly instructs his disciples to “acquire my peace within yourselves.”  It’s this teaching to turn inward into peace that is so remarkable.  It’s a call to come home to our shared humanity and divinity.  Grounded in our original Good, we can develop the peace by starting with ourselves.”

Information about the entire festival and offerings, including ticket prices and sponsorship packages, can be found at www.brigidsplace.org/marymagdalene.

 

 

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“The Many Faces of Mary Magdalene” Celebration Events:

 

 

July 7-August 3, 2015: “Re-IMAGE-ing Mary Magdalene” Art Show

Cloister Gallery, Christ Church Cathedral

1117 Texas Ave., Houston, TX 77002

Open 11am-2pm Weekdays, 8:30am-2pm on Sundays

Free

www.christchurchcathedral.org

 

Brigid’s Place is hosting a “first of its kind” month long art exhibit, from July 7 through August 3, 2015 at the Cloister Gallery of Christ Church Cathedral. Artists nationwide are invited to submit artwork that “re-images” Mary Magdalene as a woman “capable of turning hearts toward the good.” For too many centuries Mary Magdalene has been portrayed as a penitent sinner, but her true identity is one of the beloved disciples of Christ. The art show will provide artists from Houston and around the country the opportunity to visually represent Mary’s true identity and restore her legacy in this ground breaking festival!  Brigid’s Place will be accepting art submissions through June 1 from artists nationwide to select a total of 24 artists’ pieces. The selection will be a juried exhibit with three prizes and a city-wide reception.

 

July 10, 2015, 7-9pm: “Re-IMAGE-ing Mary Magdalene” Art Show Reception

Cloister Gallery, Christ Church Cathedral

1117 Texas Ave., Houston, TX 77002

Free

www.christchurchcathedral.org

 

Join Brigid’s Place, exhibition artists, festival supporters, community members, and many more for a night of festivity, celebration, and joy as we launch the month-long Many Faces of Mary Magdalene festival with a cocktail reception and art show unveiling of the many images of Mary Magdalene submitted by artists from the Houston area and nationwide. The evening will include brief remarks about the life of Mary Magdalene, information about the art exhibition, the upcoming events weekend celebration with Dr. Kayleen Asbo, and fabulous food! An event not to be missed!

 

July 23, 2015, 7pm: “Everywoman: Mary Magdalene as the Mirror of the Archetypal Feminine” lecture

The Jung Center

5200 Montrose Blvd., Houston, TX 77006

$15 Jung Center Members, $20 Non-members

www.junghouston.org

 

Dr. Kayleen Asbo will trace the evolving path of the Mary Magdalene myth across history and culture to show how her story reflects elements of the archetypal feminine in this multi-disciplinary evening. In her influential essay “Structural Aspects of the Feminine Psyche”, Carl Jung’s longtime collaborator and lover Toni Wolff articulated four archetypal aspects of the feminine: the Mother, Heteira, Amazon and Medial (or Mystic). Despite a brief, narrow and very consistent depiction of Mary Magdalene in the New Testament as a faithful witness and disciple, the mythic Mary Magdalene has adopted elements of each and every one of Wolff’s archetypes in different periods of history through art, literature, legend and drama. The evening will be spent exploring the surprising history of how Mary Magdalene has carried the shadow of each successive age in her evolving image–and the group will discuss how the current fascination with Mary Magdalene as “Mrs. Jesus” may be revealing the unconscious collective yearnings of our own time.

 

July 24-25, 2015: Mary Magdalene Workshop with Dr. Kayleen Asbo (Friday, 7-9pm and Saturday, 9am-6pm)

Christ Church Cathedral, Reynolds Hall

1117 Texas Ave., Houston TX 77002

$145 (Feb. 9-April 31, 2015)

$197 (May 1-July 17, 2015)

$235 (July 18-July 25, 2015)

Seating is Limited, Register Early

Registration Includes:

Entrance to all sessions

Refreshments Friday Evening, Saturday Morning

Saturday Lunch, Light Reception Saturday Evening

Parking in Cathedral Garage

www.brigidsplace.org/marymagdalene.html

 

Mary Magdalene stands at the very heart of the Christian contemplative tradition, and also transcends all religious boundaries. Her composite picture from scripture reveals a woman of courage able to witness profound suffering and yet also open new life, joy and hope.  For many contemporary seekers, Mary Magdalene represents an archetypal figure who points the way to a deeply embodied spiritual pathway that affirms the goodness of creation and the wisdom that can be found within the depths of each human heart. In this two-day workshop, we will:

 

-Explore the Mary Magdalene of history, through scripture and her profound and lasting impact on the contemplative tradition, particularly within French Orthodox and Benedictine monastic communities.

 

-Discover the Mary Magdalene of art, music and myth through a slideshow of over 300 masterworks from across the centuries.

 

-Celebrate Mary Magdalene as an archetypal figure of anthropos, a fully realized human being of great spiritual power who points the way to integration and wholeness, particularly as revealed in the Gospel of Mary.

 

– Engage in the ancient contemplative practices that connect us with our own inner wisdom: chanting psalms, Lectio Divina and walking the labyrinth

 

 

 

 

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Love Invasion – We’re HERE!

Today’s blog is inspired by an auto-correct incident with my HTC-1 Android phone (Thank you Verizon!).  I was typing my name into a text message and my phone autocorrected it to “INVASION.”  First I laughed.  How do you get “invasion” from Lauri Lumby?   Then I wondered, is this a message from the gods?  Are “they” coming – aliens from another race, other galaxies, other planets?  I found myself drawn to images of movies like Poltergeist, Independence Day, Close Encounters, etc.  Then I thought about my wish and hope in the midst of the ever-hastening collapse of Western civilization for the “Mothership” to come and take me away.  Was this a message that she is on her way?  Are the Pleidians, the Sirians, the Arcturians, those from Orion, Neptune, Pluto, coming to save us? 

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Then it struck me – there is no “they”.  There are no aliens coming.  The Mothership is not coming to rescue us.  Not because we don’t deserve it, but because we don’t need it.  WE ARE THE MOTHERSHIP!  WE are the ones who will rescue Western civilization from its current path of self-destruction.  We do not come from other planets or other civilizations (though it may seem like we do).  We are right here, walking among you, in human flesh.  We have been here all along, quietly carrying the mission of love in our hearts.  But, now it is time that we are known.  It is time for us to step forth from behind the veil and into the light of day so that all may know – WE ARE HERE.  We are here and INVADING the world with LOVE.  It is a love invasion….and WE ARE HERE.  In case you haven’t met us….here’s who we are:

  • We are those who desire a world rooted in love, working for peace.
  • We are those who believe we are all ONE – that there is no separation between us and that “divisions” such as race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, culture, etc. are simply those things that make us special and unique and are qualities to value as sacred and holy and something we desire to know and understand about each other.
  • We are those who believe the earth is a place to be treated as sacred.  We understand that the earth is what feeds, nourishes, clothes and feeds us and that without a healthy and whole planet, we will soon perish.
  • We are those who believe in a world that is abundant and that there is enough to feed, clothe and house all the world if we would simply learn how to protect our resources, take only what we need and share with our fellow human beings so that all may have what they need not only to survive, but also to thrive.
  • We are the ones who believe that every single human being is a sacred and holy expression of love and deserves to be treated with honor and respect.
  • We are the ones who put healthy food, safety, quality healthcare and quality education first and believe these are the inherent rights of every citizen of our planet – to have good food and clean water, to feel safe in their home and in their lands, to enjoy quality healthcare and an education.
  • We are the ones who support a global mission.  We are ONE planet.  One people.  One humanity and our minds and hearts must be attuned to the needs of the all. When one of us suffers, we all suffer.  Toward this end, we look to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as a tool to guide us.
  • We are the ones looking for peace instead of war, understanding instead of conflict, healing instead of retaliation.  We seek to heal and soothe the fears that cause people to act violently and we seek to support the evolution of humankind into just that – HUMAN+KIND.

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In short: We are here to usher in a NEW WORLD – a world that is rooted in love, working for the benefit of all of humanity, serving the cause of peace, healing a fearful and wounded world, bringing all of humanity into a state of UNITY where everyone’s needs are being met and where each person is given the opportunity to reach their greatest potential.

The Love Invasion is here.  We are here.  And because of our love,  the world will never be the same.

If you have always felt that you are here for a reason, that you feel called to change the world, that you desire a world of love and not of fear, then you are part of the Love Invasion.  If you are in the Oshkosh (Fox Valley) area, please join us for our weekly Superhero Gatherings where you will find a supportive community and resources to help you to live that call to be LOVE in the world.  Learn more HERE. 

 

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