The Emotional Journey of Neale Donald Walsch
THE HUMAN STORY THAT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE!
By Donna Strong
Neale Donald Walsch came upon the scene eleven years ago with the first “Conversations with God” (CWG) book. It gathered momentum, spreading like a spiritual wildfire. His first book remained on the New York Times bestseller list for over two-and-a-half years.
In total, Neale has written ten books in the “Conversations with God” series, and every one has appeared on the bestseller list. Translated into 34 languages, this series of books has truly spoken to a global audience about relating to God directly, and breaking through old barriers about how we perceive our connection to the divine.
The “Conversations with God” film will premiere in October, after receiving very favorable acknowledgments from mainstream Hollywood. The filmmakers have signed a contract with Samuel Goldwyn Films for theater and television distribution. Fox Home Entertainment will distribute the film through DVDs in North America.
These sources of distribution suggest channels for an increasing audience to be
introduced to this message beyond the seven million people already exposed to
the CWG message from book sales.
During a recent Spiritual Cinema Circle Festival, Neale spoke at a preview of clips about his forthcoming film. Like another leading figure in the spiritual new thought movement today, Eckhardt Tolle, Neale spent time outside the social mainstream as a homeless person. At the Festival he addressed the audience and offered this simple suggestion; when we encounter someone who is homeless, suspend judgment and simply act with grace and offer some help. Neale’s experience and his commentary has also raised an issue for the larger populace, regarding the sense of spiritual homelessness that is epidemic in our time.
With this issue of Awareness devoted to prosperity, we begin with the question of what it means to experience a disconnection from God and then come full circle, considering what this modern-day messenger has done to find the Source of true abundance.
Awareness: First, I was really moved with the discussion about homelessness at the Spiritual Cinema Circle panel and how the movie covers this aspect of your life experience. On a larger level, I would ask you to address the sense of spiritual homelessness when people feel separated from heart, meaning and belonging. Would you share some of your thoughts?
Neale: They are actually separated from God, which is the source of heart,
meaning and belonging. That is the cause of the condition. Humanity itself is
suffering from an acute case of separation. It starts with what I call
separation theology. All of the major theologies on the planet start at a point
that says we are separate from God. There is no connection except that God is
someone to whom we can pray.
Separation theology creates a separation sociology. That is; social, political and economic systems are birthed in separation. Separation theology not only produces a separation sociology, it creates a separation pathology!
We become pathologically determined to be separate from one another. This creates an enormously complex inner conflict between people, for while we are pathologically determined to be separate from each another, we are organically and biologically predisposed to be united. So we create an inner conflict that produces turmoil at the level of soul.
That is what you are discussing now, turmoil at the level of soul. That outpictures itself in a variety of dysfunctional ways, everything from acute mental illness to the kind of mild mental illness we see everywhere in society.
That is where it begins, and it can end there as well. What we need now is a new form of education, a new idea for humanity, and about humanity. We need to create a new idea about humanity and who we are. We need to create a new understanding about what our right relationship is with God and with each other. With a new understanding and new clarity, we will create a new mythology, and from this a new humanity, but not until then.
Awareness: There isn’t much to show people how they can be real participants in a vision, so your comments are so appropriate. You have said that these times are presenting us with brilliant opportunities. At the Festival, you spoke to the need for all of us to step up to express spiritual leadership at this time. Would you offer some comments?
Neale: The human race is at a time of choosing. If we continue in the current direction at this rate, we are liable to find ourselves caught as losers in the human race — which is a race against time.
Awareness: I love the pun in this popular phrase, it is quite insightful. We do indeed need to respond to the conditions arising. There is an urgency to respond and a sense of us having to speed up. Instead of going faster and faster, which we are definitely doing, we need to become more focused in moving forward in a productive and expansive manner, including as you have addressed, bringing in new elements that are right for us now.
Neale: We are individually and collectively making an extraordinary decision at this time and answering a fundamental question, which is, who are we? Who are we as individuals, who are we as a culture, and who are we as a species? We are answering this question not just verbally through some kind of statement, but more profoundly with our actions and the choices we are making in everyday life. This is a time of profound choice for every member of the human race.
What makes it so profound is that we are not only deciding this for ourselves, but in this day and age of hyper-connectivity and super-integration, we are really making choices and decisions for the entire world. That is, it is now absolutely true, that when a butterfly falls in Singapore it changes the weather in San Francisco. We are getting more and more clear about that every day. Al Gore’s extraordinary movie, “An Inconvenient Truth”, is one demonstration.
Attitudes, opinions, thoughts, concepts and constructs of the mind that are held with power, emotion and clarity, even by a single individual, now have second, third and fourth-level impacts, the likes of which could not have been true years ago, because of the quality of ‘instantaneosity’. This is a word I have coined, to mean that what occurs in the life of a single individual, very often occurs instantaneously around the world.
We can, if we choose to, blog or even vlog, which is a video blog. It is happening increasingly around the world where a person gets a $37 camera from Radio Shack and attaches it to his/her computer and does a vlog, uploads it to a website and suddenly we are able to send messages to the world in this kind of instant and extraordinary way.
This quality of instantaneosity is creating a once-in-a-millennia moment in the life of humanity, an opportunity for us to collectively create and choose, decide and declare, announce and fulfill the next grandest notion about what we are. That is what is occurring right now.
It has been said that the next great battle will in large be a bloodless one. That is good news and it is also, startling news. The bloodless battle will not be a battle for land, or even resources such as water or oil. It will be a battle for our thoughts; ideas of men and women everywhere. It will be a battle for the human mind and the human soul. It will be a struggle of ideas, between people who think and believe one way, and people who believe another. Who wins this worldwide global structure of ideas, will create and shape the future of humanity for the next several hundred years. There is a shifting of humanity’s concept about itself occurring, no less significant than the change that took place during the Renaissance.
That Renaissance shift in humanity's ideas about itself and ways of being took place over a period of around three hundred years. Because of the quality of instantaneosity that envelopes our lives now, the current ‘Renaissance’ will take place in one tenth that time. We have reduced the time it takes to completely reorganize ourselves by a factor of ten. We are going to be reorganizing ourselves in how we do life; how we do politics, economics, education, religion, and our social interactions at every level.
We will be reorganizing that in the next twenty-five years or so. Interestingly, Al Gore’s projections of the timeframe we need to make some global changes matches mine almost perfectly. We see that we are living within a twenty-five to thirty-year window. We either choose our own future actively, or accept our own future by default.
Awareness: You have said that one of the core beliefs we need to change is that there is not enough — to one that there is enough. Too many of us are acting from a core belief that there’s not enough in our personal lives, and there’s not enough we can do in the world, because what we’re being called to address is so large.
Neale: Every major and fundamental shift in the consciousness of humanity has been caused by one person initially. That must never be forgotten. It was true even outside of the Age of Instantaneosity, much less within it. Every major fundamental shift in humanity’s idea about itself has been caused by one person. Without exception it is true. Failure to recognize that is a failure to understand the most elementary lesson of life itself.
Each individual is responsible for the outcomes experienced by the whole. It is in fact, demonstrably not true that a single person does not have enough, or cannot do enough to change the course of human history. Indeed there is no other way in which it has ever occurred.
Awareness: That is a great response.
Neale: Albert Schweitzer, Mahatma Gandhi, Alfred Nobel, Martin Luther King, Charles De Gaulle, George Bush, Napoleon Bonaparte, Jesus Christ, the list goes on and on, and includes Neale Donald
Walsch, John Doe, Jane Smith, Michael, Robert, Sally and Vladimir, and all of us. The only thing that can stop us now, is ourselves.
Awareness: How do you see us waking up to that, and what do you see shifting in people?
Neale: The quality of instantaneosity is going to wake us up if anything will.
The ability of each of us to communicate instantly with all the rest is making
it thunderously loud and clear that humanity is in charge of itself. Life is a
process that informs life about life through the process of life itself. The
process is now speeding up exponentially so that we are moving forward, racing
forward at a clip in our ability to understand, to comprehend, to realize, and
to respond to the incoming data that is being presented by life itself. This
quality is what will wake us up, if anything does.
My new book will address the concept that nothing can stop us now, if we allow ourselves to accept at last, the inheritance this universe and the God of this universe has always had in store for us from the beginning of time. It will be a dual message book: What is stopping us, and, nothing can stop us now.
Awareness: I have been doing some writing recently, and was drawn to the Tarot symbol, The Hanged Man, who is turned upside down, to get a different perspective. I think we are living in times where this symbol addresses how events feel like they are turning our lives upside-down. How amazing that you are literally talking about your next book which will present material in an upside-down format to illustrate this need for a shift in our perspective!
Neale: It is going to be an extraordinary publishing achievement, and will provide answers to questions you are asking here today.
Awareness: Let me ask a question about your upcoming movie. What do you find most fulfilling about its completion?
Neale: I am pleased and feel most fulfilled that this movie sends the message
which has become the message of my life. God is talking to all of us, all the
time. God is communicating with humanity in every moment, every hour of every
day. God is entirely different from what we have imagined God to be, and so is
life, and so are we, entirely different from how we imagine ourselves to be.
These messages are made very clear in the movie in a striking, provocative and evocative way. I think the movie will send this message to a whole new audience. This is very fulfilling and gratifying. The mission of my life is to change the world’s mind about God. Several years ago I received a five-word message summarizing all ten of the “Conversations with God” series. Says God: You have got me all wrong!
Now if that message is true, it opens an extraordinary doorway. It presents us
with an opportunity to engage in another possibility, that there is something we
do not fully understand about God, about life and each other. The understanding
of which, could change everything. This movie creates a context within which
these messages are sent and can be received at a very deep level.
Through the medium of entertainment, it will allow the audience to receive this message and leave the theater, hopefully touched by it. The preview audiences have certainly indicated that this is exactly what is happening, so I am proud to be associated with this project. I am also very grateful to Stephen Simon, the Producer and Director of this movie and the Spiritual Cinema Circle, for the work they have done in protecting the purity of the message in the “Conversations with God” books.
Awareness: I really felt the synergy of film visionaries coming together
when I was at the Festival.
I’d like to ask, you started out with a deep sense of pain and anger when you first heard God. What kind of conversations are you having with God now?
Neale: Boy, wonderfully joyful, deeply embracing, marvelously accepting, utterly rejuvenating, strikingly reviving and refreshing. Peace-producing conversations that bring me to tears of quiet soft joy and deep inner peace. It is very difficult for me to not want to stay there, and to come out into the world. I don’t know how true spiritualists who live a cloistered existence can come out and deal with the world at large. It is very difficult.
Awareness: One of the comments I have read in different spiritual perspectives is about mixing the pain and travail of earth with the glory of creation as a spiritual path, learning to face the pain, and not forgetting.
Neale: I agree with that but it doesn’t make it any less challenging to do! I find it very challenging to spend any kind of time in so-called regular life. I don’t want to go to cocktail parties or ‘do stuff’. I don’t go to movies very often because there aren’t movies I want to see. Books are my refuge because I can pick the good books still being written that are wonderfully uplifting.
Awareness: Much in life is full of destructive and distracting content. Through your sensing a deep connection with the divine, it definitely would pale by comparison!
Neale: And yet we have to learn to be in the world but not of it, so it is what you were talking about a minute ago, learning to balance that with the clear benefit of interacting with the world because it has been placed here for our benefit. So I see that, it is just difficult.
Awareness: I am delighted to share your current “Conversation with God” with our readers because I think too often, when people experience their own sense of divine connectedness, they only allow a little doorway. They don’t give themselves permission to really open to what deeply receiving the experience might do to catalyze their perspective.
Neale: I not only know what you are saying, I experience that every day. I am not always able to access or give myself permission to move into that experience. I am confronting the same challenges that I have always confronted, in fact in some ways they are bigger ones, because of what I know. The only difference between the me of today and the me of my yesterdays is I now know what the path is. I don’t sustain it across the entirety of my life, but at least I know where I am going, and I do get to a place of peace, harmony, joy, clarity and wisdom. I assure you, those who are around me would tell you that I do not occupy this space all the time, but I know where home is now.
Awareness: I really resonate with the statement, ‘I know where home is.’ Whatever the past reasons for what you call the separation theology, it is time that we surrender it and embrace our true inheritance, to directly know the divine, and therefore to remember our true home.
Neale: I agree, and we all have the opportunity to play our individual roles in the creation of our preferred reality. To the degree we all do that, we will all get to experience it. So I thank you, you are a sender of messages and a bringer of the light.
Awareness: Thank you Neale for bringing us a gift to know God with an
expanded perception, and for calling us all to a greater understanding of what
we are capable. This is the spiritual essence of abundance, to feel at home,
united with God, knowing the experience of peace, harmony and joy that comes
from an intimate connection with the divine.
“Conversations with God” will open nationwide and in Canada in October. Please see your local theater listings or go to: www.cwgthemovie.com
Donna Strong writes passionately about creativity, spirituality, and healing. She can reached at: www.donnastrong.com
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