Paradigm Shift in Progress

Limitless Ocean 

Limitless Ocean 

There comes a season in life that requires more than the tame answers that once worked but no longer seem relevant. Life becomes wild and chaotic, and the tame answers stop working. It doesn’t matter how you try to defend them or rehearse how well this way of looking at your life has worked in the past. It’s as if a volcano has erupted, burying all you have spent your life building, as Mt. Vesuvius buried the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum in 79 A.D. The familiar landscape of your life has been changed forever. There is no going back to who you were and where you were, because that person and that place and that time no longer exists.

It may be a cataclysmic event that changes your life: a death of someone near and dear, a loss of job or dream or project, a divorce, a catastrophe, or a sudden earthquake of emotion that opens your eyes to the instability of others—and yourself. Or it could be a more gradual change: the numbing disillusionment of delays, detours and pretty promises made but never kept; the growing belief that the people you once thought were so wise are not so wonderful after all; or learning that someone’s pious talk of caring and comfort was all a smoke screen for a user to abuse you emotionally, physically, or spiritually. It can be when you come face to face with your own human folly and realize that you were living in your head instead of following your heart and now you’re at a dead end with no way out. Whatever the catalyst, things have changed and the old comfortable ways no longer feel good, your old solutions do not work, and you’ve come face to face with your own inadequacies and unanswerable questions.

It’s time for a paradigm shift. Pastor and author Eugene Peterson says in Under the Unpredictable Plant, “A paradigm is a model or pattern for grasping and interpreting reality. If the paradigm is wrong or deficient in some way, reality is understood wrongly or deficiently. It makes no difference that the pieces of reality that are fed into the paradigm are true and understood accurately; if the paradigm arranges them wrongly, they come out wrong.” When the paradigm stops working because conditions have changed, new information has arrived, or old ideas stop making sense, it’s time to set the old belief system aside and be open to a new belief system.

How do you do this? One key is the imagination. As long as you try to drum dry facts and cold figures into your head, you starve your heart and keep yourself stuck. Instead, planting the wild mustard seed of imagination may help you see everything from a fresh perspective. The wild thoughts that seem so fearsome and intimidating at first can become the safest way to navigate this deep life change process.

Let go of familiar categories of “right” and “wrong” and all of the old explanations. Instead of repeating the old story over and over, look for a new story—a more positive and proactive narrative of your life’s tale. This is not easy, because so many voices, especially those inside your head, tell you this is not “safe” or “prudent,” that only a crazy or depraved person be willing to take risks and let go of the truisms of the herd to find their own way in the world. John Middleton Murray says, “For the good man to realize that it is better to be whole than to be good is to enter on a straight and narrow path compared to which his previous rectitude was flowery license.” 

An interior shift of the imagination can move you beyond carefully defined boundaries. It’s not so much that you’ll remake the world in another image, but that you’ll learn to see the world differently. When you acknowledge that you don’t have all the answers, you allow new ideas to work their way into your imagination, expanding your reality past your current understanding. With a paradigm shift, everything changes. With a shift of imagination, your way of looking at everything changes.


When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.
Max Planck (physicist, discovered quanta in 1899)

Every truth passes through three stages before it is recognized:
• In the first, it is ridiculed.
• In the second, it is opposed.
• In the third, it is regarded as self-evident.
Arthur Schopenhauer

It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it. 
Upton Sinclair

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
Mahatma Gandhi

Now we have been dealing with the magical approach, and let me gently remind you that I said that you must be willing to change all the way from the old system of orientation to the new, if you want the new approach to work fully for you in your life.
Jane Roberts, The Magical Approach

Whether we are young or old, whether our dreams are public or private, we are always evolving toward either a smaller and more fearful self, or a larger and more loving self.
Marianne Williamson

I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.
Albert Einstein

It is from that place of intense aliveness, spacious presence, that you can appreciate the aliveness in all things. It is more than just the sense perception of the chair or the perception of the table or the glass of water. Within the sense perceptions you can sense that there is more than what you are perceiving on the surface; that everything has a presence, an alive presence to it. When you touch that within you, then you don't have to wait for something to happen in your life to feel more alive. 
Eckhart Tolle

I soon learned that I could have right thought only as I lived my interior life in the very atmosphere of the Abiding Presence. 
Albert C. Grier

It is only by allowing your emotions to be highly attuned that you will be able to see things differently. As Pir-O-Mirshid indicates, you become aware of the way identifying with your physical condition entraps you in a very limited purview. Raise yourself from this earthly condition, considering it as scaffolding, as underpinning. This is where God-consciousness will make a difference. If you are trying to reach upward, you are limiting yourself as the one who is wishing it. It is much more effective to think the other way around: The divine perfection is trying to come through my imperfection. There is a divine fulfillment taking place as long as I do not obstruct it or limit it by my personal way of looking at things.
Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan

There is something in the universe which forever gives itself to its creation, forever offers itself, not as sacrifice, but as an impartation of its essence in everything. The practitioner must sense this Divine Givingness, this Divine Love, as the manifestation of Spirit through everything. He must sense the harmony of the Divine Life, which, should we permit It, could give such power to our thought that it would become irresistible as law, not through will or concentration, but by attention and willingness.
Ernest Holmes

The practitioner must have a calm which transcends any confusion he wishes to change. He must have a sense of justice that outweighs any manifestation of injustice. And he must have a sense of the immediate availability of good—not as though he were reaching out toward it, but rather, as though he were reaching out with it. 
Ernest Holmes

God, in all that is most living and incarnate in him, is not far away from us, altogether apart from the world we see, touch, hear, smell, and taste about us. Rather he awaits us every instant in our action, in the work of the moment. There is a sense in which he is at the tip of my pen, my spade, my brush, my needle—of my heart and of my thought.
Teilhard de Chardin 

The brain can as easily speak a good word to the body as to speak an evil one, and the effect will follow. But men do not know this and so they are at the mercy of thousands of idle thoughts, generated by brains so low in the scale of development as to scarcely be capable of thought at all. It is this class of low irresponsible thoughts that forms the mental atmosphere we breathe and keeps us weak in our own opinions until we learn how to combat and drive it away, and how to place our new thoughts, now being educated in strength, in place of them.
Helen Wilman (The Conquest of Poverty ©1899)

What is needed is to learn afresh, to observe, and to discover for ourselves, the meaning of wholeness.
David Bohm, Wholeness and the Implicate Order

The attainment of wholeness requires one to stake one's whole being. Nothing less will do; there can be no easier conditions, no substitutes, no compromises.
C.G. Jung

Asked for advice, Ernest Holmes would often say, "I do not know what you should do, but there is Something that does know." Then he would pray affirmatively that the person was now receiving guidance from his or her own inner wisdom. 

Affirmative Prayer/Inspiring Person

I’m using this affirmation in 2011:

I am in touch with Spirit every moment. I am guided to create the life of my dreams in an easy and relaxed manner, a healthy and positive way, with grace, ease, and lightness. 

Marc Allen 
(founder of New World Library, who used this affirmation to get out of financial trouble and build his successful publishing company). 
Here's a link to an interview with him:

Magic vs. Conventional Wisdom

Deer Magic

Deer Magic

Now we have been dealing with the magical approach, and let me gently remind… you that I said that you must be willing to change all the way from the old system of orientation to the new, if you want the new approach to work fully for you…
Jane Roberts (The Magical Approach: A Seth Book)

2010 was a tough year. But this difficult year brought some very special gifts, including a new flexibility and a willingness to release my old judgments, stories, and expectations. I was dying, and I was coming to life. All the old rules stopped making sense, and the new rules were not rules at all, but a willingness to suspend my disbelief and to enter into the Presence of God in a deeper way, then to do the next impossible thing while God made a way where there was no way.

Conventional wisdom offers a linear perspective of how things should be and what is happening. It is based on past experience. Read any newspaper with its dire predictions and you have a good idea of what conventional wisdom is. Listen to the wet blankets in your life as they warn of some pending disaster if you are crazy enough to follow your bliss and you’ll get another dose of conventional wisdom. But when you start living by spiritual principles, it’s always new territory and the wisdom is anything but conventional. As Ernest Holmes used to say, “Principle has no precedent.” Or as my wise friend, Donna Michael says, “You’ve never been here before.” 

Conventional spirituality is based on theologies and dogma that attempt to define and describe God. Magic, as I define it, is a mystical relationship with God, understanding that whatever name you use is only a partial understanding of a reality beyond our comprehension. “We see through a glass darkly…" Mysticism, magic, spiritual alchemy, metamorphosis—it’s all a process of releasing old limiting ideas and embracing a new paradigm. 

One of the ways I am accessing mystical wisdom is through my morning pages. I have written morning pages (three pages longhand without stopping or editing, per Julia Cameron’s instructions in The Artist’s Way) since 1994. This year, inspired by Lily, a friend in a literary group, I’m often allowing the third page be a response from God to all the mundane crap I write in the first two pages. I offer the entry for the new year, below, as an Inner Wisdom entry. I hope it inspires you as much as it inspires me. I wouldn’t call it “channeled” or “inspired” but I do sense a wisdom greater than my own conventional thinking coming through. (I’ll tell you if I still feel the same way at the end of 2011, as some of it goes farther than I would ever say if it was just conventional me speaking.)

Words of Encouragement 

Awaken to the now moment. Centered attention is the way to spiritual rebirth and renewal—initiation into a higher plane of living, a deep sense of presence. 
Eckhart Tolle

“Stirb und werde.” Die and come to life.

I soon learned that I could have right thought only as I lived my interior life in the very atmosphere of the Abiding Presence.
Albert C. Grier

The new meaning of soul is creativity and mysticism. These will become the foundation of the new psychological type and with him or her will come the new civilization. 
Otto Rank

What imagination does with reality is the reality we live by.
David Ignatow

Logic will take you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.
Albert Einstein

Imagination is the capacity to make connections between the visible and the invisible, between heaven and earth, between the present and the past, between present and future.
Eugene Peterson

The great art of turning within is to see the connections between things which do not seem to be connected… We can train ourselves by consistently questioning if things are the way we think they are; and by making an effort to depart from our personal vantage point in order to see a connection hidden from our personal vantage point. That is what Buddha called questioning your opinion.
Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan

Imagination can fashion the world into a homeland as well as into a prison or a place of battle. It is the invisibles that determine how you will view the world, whether as a homeland or as a prison or as a place of battle. Nobody lives in the “objective” world, only in a world filtered through the imagination.
Czeslaw Milosz

For most people, there is something disturbing and threatening about the word 'magic', and they want nothing to do with this practice. And yet everyone practices magic; yes, on an unconscious level they do nothing but that. According to the laws of divine justice, each negative thought and feeling is in itself black magic, for it sullies something, it tears it to pieces. And conversely, everything that is harmonious and constructive, everything that embellishes and illuminates, belongs to the category of white magic. So, instead of appearing horrified whenever magic is mentioned, humans would do better to try and understand the significance of the ways they express themselves. Yes, for, when seen in this way, many people who have never opened a book of black magic, who don't even believe black magic exists, are actually, through their behavior, their thoughts, feelings and words, veritable black magicians.
Omraam Mikhaël Aïvanhov


I invite “magic” into my life in 2011 by inviting the living Presence of God to work in, through, and for me. 

Inner Wisdom: 

It’s magic—you don’t want to know exactly how it is done, it would ruin the show. Just enjoy it. Clutching, clinging, judging, speculating, defining—all are counterproductive. A small amount of skepticism is part of the fun, for the magic is even more dazzling when you say, “I believe, help my unbelief.” 

“Success” was in many ways a dry and limiting word for 2010. I had to twist and bend your mind with it, so that you could access that alchemical secret of non-attachment and letting go of all conventional definitions of success. Success is a by-product of magic. Now with “magic” as your word for 2011 we can get to the good stuff. 2010 taught you the limitations of conventional wisdom. That’s the old paradigm you have been so frustrated with that is dying. Magic, alchemy, mysticism, enchantment—that’s the new paradigm.

Magic is a word that is key in transformation, evolution, and metamorphosis. Not only that, magic is more fun. It’s playful, and it intimates that there is a measure of effortlessness, an abracadabra open-sesame Aladdin’s lamp approach to solving problems; an approach that does not solve the problem at the level you created the problem, but dissolves and outgrows the problem, turning it into a non-issue because you have moved to a higher level of consciousness.

You will see this happen concerning a safe place to live, a large and steady income, and especially coming together with the love of your life. It is the land of heart’s desires fulfilled, and the fearsome dragons turn into the friendly dinosaurs of Dinotopia, and all the failures and losses alchemized into a butterfly metamorphosis that gives you wings. Poetry instead of prose. Song instead of lectures. Lovemaking and bliss. 2011 is magic. 

• Who could have imagined the miracles that appeared in November and December of 2010? So, what kind of miracles might be possible in the new year?
• What miracles would you most wish to see come together?
• What kind of miracles would you love that might not even be imaginable right now?
• What feelings do you want to feel?
• How do you want to feel and be in whatever situation you might find yourself?
• Are you willing to believe in spite of your unbelief?


And here is a bit of my favorite musical magic. 

PLEASE SHARE this video! Tim Bays is a speaker, humorist and musical presenter who uses songs and stories to entertain, elevate and inspire. He has worked with companies from IBM to At Home Total Care and shared concert bills with artists ranging from Sarah Vaughn to Arlo Guthrie.