Seminary Program

This is where we post the essays from many of our Universal Life Church Seminary students. When students finish a ULC course, they write a comprehensive essay about their experiences with the course, what they learned, didn't learn, were inspired by, etc. Here are their essays.

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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Dr. of Spiritual Development final essay

Final Essay for Dr. of Spiritual Development
This was truly a thought provoking engaging class.  It was one with much personal reflection and work.  It's a great way to learn about oneself.
Living life with clarity & purpose – isn't it nice.  If the whole world could live life with clarity & purpose so much would be so different.  How many people do you know that have no Focus, Content or direction?  Take a look at a real look at the people around you.  Do they know who they are or where they are going?  I mean really know.  Many people don't even feel they have a spirit.  
As I said I started and stopped this class several times. Like most people I didn't think I could meditate.  I didn't equate meditation and praying as the same.  I had a tough time going deep into my soul.  I then realized I was afraid of what I might see or hear.  Then I got it I had to in order to get a better me. However, I didn't need to do it all at once.  It took me many years to become who I am so its ok to work on the parts that need to be changed one at a time and to take as long as it needs.
I am now mindful of what I say and do.   Well I was always mindful but now I am more so.  I now know how to use my energy to make things better.  I can use my internal resources to fulfill my higher purpose.
I have been able to move things from possible to probable to done.  I was agonizing over how to make 2 mortgage payments.  I tried to sell or rent a property in a market that wasn't co operative.  I finally had an epiphany.  My spirit sent me the person(s) I needed right at the best time.  I was about to give up and give the bank one when suddenly I was able to lease with option and now I am doing better.  My spirit allowed me to let go and let the good in life take control.  I reached across the void.  I understood I needed to be more specific in my request for an answer a solution.  I realized I wasn't asking the right question. 
When we form our inquiry with purpose we get better results.  I'm now very careful with my thoughts.  I think what I want and request what I need.  Yes there are times I must reform my requests. But with practice things are getting better.  Sometimes it is good to just roam just let your mind go and see what is there.  Our minds are like computers and everything we know is stored there.  We can access it if we try.  We get messages all the time we just don't always pay attention to them.  We don't recognize them.  Once we learn to see what these messages look like it easier to pay attention to tem. 
The WHO AM I exercise was the most difficult.  This took the longest.  I'm not sure if it was because I was afraid or lazy but I finally go it. Whew! The deeper who I am is not the surface who I am.  Not completely.  It's interesting how we become another person to survive the society we live in. 
The "Little Maker" says we need to give ourselves permission to change.  Yes we do.  We need to give ourselves permission to meditate, to find out who we are and to make ourselves better.  It's a tragedy that we are raised to eel so bad about ourselves and made to feel worse about making ourselves better.  I recently attended a seminar where the speaker said, "as you start to do well people will get jealous and try to beat you down".  It's true.  I always called them naysayers.  I think now most people resist change just so they don't have to hear it from their friends. 
Steering energy to get results, it's actually kind of fun.   Once you learn how to make it happen.  Next time you get a headache try this.  You can steer the headache away.  I sprained my ankle and within hours the swelling was gone and I was walking fine.  How powerful is that?  I rarely get sick.  I don't allow it I've always told people that. They have always thought I was crazy but now I see I have been steering my energy to wellness the entire time.
Physics teaches us cause & effect.  We joke about Karma but Karma is cause & effect.  We must own what we have done and work to create and recreate who we are.  To understand that everything is possible is to understand that cause & effect.  What could be –v- what is most likely to be. 
As I moved the probability of letting go of one of my properties and moved it to possibility I'm excited about watching it move to manifest a wonderful outcome. 
I now sometimes find myself stopping, thinking, rewinding he tape and actively making the change.  I've heard some say, "Catholics grow hurting adults".  I get it now.  Catholics believe they are born with original sin and everyone else believes they are born with holy divinity.  What a contrast!  I have always been in conflict with my soul over this.  Not anymore.  God never made anything bad and therefore there is no way he'd create us with sin. Besides what about that whole idea he let his only son die for our sins. 
Sorry that was a little digression.  I think Imagery was the toughest for me.  I am still working on this.  It is a lifetime and then some to get there. 
Think Positive!  This takes on a whole new meaning now.  If you want to manifest good you must be positive.  You need to find time to understand what you really want and be specific.  Ok well you can start vague but eventually you need to be specific.  I learned we don't always know what we want we just know we don't have it or aren't experiencing it.  I realize most people never meet their soul.  Many don't believe it's possible. 
I think the most interesting part of the class was redirecting our life.  That is a very powerful thing.   Again we always say we can change our own path but to truly so isn't that easy when you don't have the skills.  We unconsciously sabotage ourselves.  We let fear and lack of understanding get in the way.  We also give up because it takes work and time.  What if we put all that effort into this and in the end there is no change?  We should be saying it will be worth all the time and effort and if I can……. in the end. 
I actually had a very hard time on the NLP portion of this class.  I had a major change I wanted to affect.  I had to let the divine in me rule.  I had to trust it would be ok.  I'll explain shortly.
We use generalizations to form opinions even when we are wrong we often can't be convinced.  We have a belief based on our past and that's that.  Ever heard someone say that person is so mean or so difficult?  Then you meet that person and even though they are not mean or difficult you treat them a though they are based on what your preconceived idea of them is from someone else.  It happens often.  We allow ourselves to be run by forces other than our own spirit.  The external forces are stronger than our internal forces.  To let go of these and trust ourselves is a very powerful and fulfilling accomplishment. 
Prayer and meditation are connected and both very necessary.  They are connected.  Ever hear someone say I was road coma.  They don't remember going from point A to point B.  They were I a trance a form of meditation.  Deep thought is a form of meditation. Remember the grand tour – we were told we get to that place where we quit because we feel like we are about to go over a cliff and w can't allow ourselves to quit.  I've been there so many times.  It's like a bad dream and you wake up just before the danger strikes.  Well…….stay posted.
Self acceptance  - v- drive.  We must always be true to ourselves while striving to be better.  Don't compromise who are for anyone.  Always engage in personal growth.  I am not who I was 5 years ago.  I don't plan to be the same person I am now 5 years from now.  Your self esteem should never be based on your position in life.  Don't seek your SELF in your position.
HUNA – Can I just say awesome!!!!!!!!  To make it simple: Ike is what we think happens, Kala is everything is possible, Makia is you ca change your day by changing your attitude (I always say, "don't let it ruin your day), Manawa is take care of it now, Aloha is love all, Mana is empower yourself and Pono is the measure of truth the results.  How cool is that. 
Control your thoughts.  Control your actions.  We waive back and forth between sadness and joy.  I realize it's easier said then done but we need to learn equanimity.  We must become steadfast and even-tempered.  I'm a work in progress.
Understand everyone.  This is difficult because so many have spent so much time learning to be someone else.  Always look for the good in everyone and everything.  Jesus did. 
Listen, listen, listen, don't judge things by history.  If we don't stay open and listen we miss things that are valuable to our future growth.  Every person and every event has something to teach us. 
Control our thoughts and actions.  If we can do all this we can achieve a true inner peace. 
The 11 tips for infusing your life with more clarity:
  1. Assume 100% responsibility or you're your own level of clarity.  Create it, it won't suddenly appear and say hear I am.
  2. Stop creating the opposite of clarity.  Don't do things or hang around people whos motives, goals and desires are contrary to your own. 
  3. Harvest & apply the clarity lessons from your past. As we grow & change so does our clarity.
  4. Use visualization to create the vibe o clarity.  You either are clear & focused or you aren't.
  5. Ask for help.  Ask someone who is clear about their own path for help. 
  6. Put your goals in writing & review them daily.  Successful people are good at this.
  7. Accept that any goal is better than no goal.  Some people just whine and say they have no goals.  Don't be one of them.
  8. Crystalize your goals.  Lock them down.  Be specific.
  9. Pay attention to the path, not just the end result.  Sometimes how you get there is more important than getting there.
  10. One goal at a time.  Keep your energy focused!
  11. Explore & experiment.  Experiment to gain clarity of your goal.
This all sounds overwhelming but if you keep as a standard it really works.  If you are stuck in a rut don't worry it is ok to experiment even if you rack up some failures before getting it right.  Most successes in life come after many failures.
Nothing exist outside the present moment.  I don't know anyone that lives by this principle but we all should.  The past & future truly are illusions.  We create them from our imagination.  We can't exist outside of now.  It isn't physically possible.  One of my favorite sayings is, "you are so busy looking into the forest you can't see the tree right in front of you".  I mean stop seeking your happiness in the future and start living for the here and now.  Start looking for ways to create your happiness here and now.  There is no someday there is only today.  We may not have tomorrow.  There is no guarantee.
We manifest what we intend.  It is critical to stay focused to meet our end goal.  This is not an option. 
It would be a great world I we all lived our authentic selves.  Like the Marine who knew right away that he found true love and nothing else mattered, not money, nothing they would survive together.  Happiness was the most important part of life.  He felt he was married to her in a past life.  Or like the woman who said she married when she loved someone enough to, and divorced when the love ceased being healthy or nurturing. She said she had done her time in prisons of the body and she had no patience for the prisons of the heart or mind.   These people are both clear about they want. 
It can take a very long time more than one lifetime to master the mind & soul. Some people go through an entire life and never spend any time working on it. 
On Mother's Day I sat at Diana Falls in New Hampshire with both friends and strangers admiring the beauty of the falls and we talked about the beauty that God had created.  Someone made the comment, "I'm not spiritual" then proceeded to say how lucky we were to have been given such a wonderful gift from God.  It was a great opportunity to explain how that was spiritual and physically going into a church was not what made you spiritual.  Spirituality is a belief.  Conversations with people truly enhance our lives. 
We talked about how when we pray/meditate we improve our lives.  We do better and become better people.  W are never alone.  We always have our spirit guide with us.  We may not call them that but whatever title we use they are there/here to help us.
I like knowing that there is a perfect me in an alternate universe.   I chuckled that I married the man of my dreams in an alternate universe. I wondered if he knows that.  I guess the question I have about this is; at any time does our spirit change places with our alternates?  Aren't you curious? 
To wrap things up; changing your mind can change your reality, changing your perception can change your behavior.  You can move tings from probability to possibility to manifestation.  Perception isn't always real.  Be your authentic self. Be aware that you have a spiritual guide is with you. 
The 6 step reframe; here it is.  This is what I promised.  I tried this and it works.
I've always had a great fear of heights.  I decided to try to overcome this fear.  I rode my motorcycle to the top of a steep mountain.  The drive up was at a very steep grade and very curvy.  It was terrifying.  I did not stop.  I rode all the way to the top.  Yes I was nervous but I did it.  I even climbed up on a staging to help a friend replace windows.  What's next?  Who knows the world is full of possibilities that I can turn into manifestations.  I can't wait to see how it all turns out. 
Rev Anne McBride

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