CW: Can you tell us about your personal spiritual
journey and some of the messages you have learned?
BA: To begin, I'd like to quote something that I
wrote in 1979: "We must have patience. This human experience is a
forever eternal process." Now, when I look back at that, I think what a
smug ass I was to say that. I thought I had arrived, that I had "it,"
that I was never going to fight with God again, that I was never again
going to fall into despair.
Over these past few years, I've had to learn what really is true,
not merely what I demand, expect, or want to be true. By accepting
reality, by really meeting and allowing what is to exist, my intuition
has grown more reliable. In one sense I still agree with the quote.
Specifically, I have realized that this reckoning with the truth is
indeed a forever on-going process. Over these last 31 years, since I
wrote the quote, in my attempt to become a master lover, I have
realized, sometimes with great pain, that this truth attunement process
is going to just keep going, and I think until our last breath. Thanks
to my ego, back then I believed there was an end to it, like a period
at the end of the sentence. We are recovering human beings and we will
always walk that path back to Truth. We say we are "recovering" rather
than "recovered" so that every time our issue comes up again, we will
be reminded that we need both discipline and devotion to our spiritual
process is not about somebody being sick. This is not a psychological
process. This is a spiritual journey about remembering and reclaiming
who we really are, the part that once was "in Spirit." This is about
knowing that when we chose to incarnate into human form, the very
process of birthing created the belief in separation. We entered into
the illusion. This earth plane holds the illusion that we are indeed
separate. It holds the experience of duality. From this belief in
separation comes our belief in fear. Our personal journey is to examine
and challenge this fear. The only illusion on the planet is our belief
in separation. We must hold it here gently and mercifully, and come to
remember that love is also the source of our fear. Love is the source
of everything -- even our fear. We must embrace where we are with
acceptance, and that in turn will bring us back to our own self-loving.
What I would like to offer anybody who reads this article is my
belief that, while we were in angelic form (in Spirit), we chose to
come into this earth plane to bring Love where Love was not. For most
of us, we thought we had a grand life purpose, but few of us realize
and accept that the single purpose of our incarnation is to fall in
love with ourselves.
Imagine for a moment loving yourself, and in the next moment,
imagine meeting someone who also chooses to love themselves. Imagine
the moment when you indeed remember that this was part of your soul's
choice. Are you willing to invite yourself into the place where you
remember that you are a manifestation of God, and your purpose on earth
is to serve Him? Can you imagine that Love is the source of everything?
Are you willing to imagine that everything that ever happened to you is
the gift that you chose to bring you back to your own self-loving? And
of course I am using Love and God synonymously here.
CW: So many people these days feel as though their
lives are in chaos, or they feel like they're going through really big
changes. What advice could you offer to people having these
BA: First, I would ask them to define chaos. What
does that word really mean? I would suggest that chaos is the beginning
of the deconstruction of their images [pictures about how life should
be]. I suggest that chaos is fear's insistence that we stay where we
are, which is in conflict with the heart's insistence that we move and
evolve to another place. I invite anybody who says they are going
through chaos or big changes to ask God to come in, to help them be
open to seeing how they have a belief (a lie) that change is difficult.
Let go, surrender to the truth, and hold your fear gently. And then ask
another question: "What thought, or what habit, would you have to let
go of, in order for change to be enjoyable, easy, and/or less of a
CW: Could you tell us a little bit about what it
takes to become a master of loving? What do people need to learn in
order to reach this level of mastery?
BA: I have studied virtually every spiritual book
around; I've studied with many masters; and I've inquired with
dedication into what it would really mean to be a lover. Jiddu
Krishnamurti had a quote that I resonate with, specifically, "To love
is the most important thing in life, but what do you mean by love?" For
me, love is a spiritual practice. It requires the greatest dedication
and devotion. The full acceptance of self, that's what love is. Until
we fall in love with ourselves, we will not be able to genuinely
experience the love of another.
I believe that I must do unto myself before I can go on to do for
others. I can't give to others what I have not yet given to myself.
Soren Kierkegaard put it well when he said, "To cheat oneself out of
love is the most terrible deception. It is an eternal loss for which
there is no reparation either in time or in eternity."
Love is the source of everything. It changes your world view. For
me, living in love is my greatest longing. If we engaged with each
other in this way, and extrapolated the experience out to others, can
you imagine what a world we would live in? The gift for me of this life
is to open to the vastness of loving. If this sounds interesting to
you, I invite you to call me. If you resonate with this, let's discover
a conversation together.
Charles Cresson Wood, MBA, MSE, is a Pathwork helper based in
Mendocino, California (see www.abundantreality.com).
He has also written a Pathwork meditation book entitled Opening To
Abundance (see www.amazon.com).