Connecting with the Universe to Build a Better Self, Home, Congregation, & World
by John G. Church, Ph. D.
Alternate Title: Building Ways to Draw upon Our Spiritual Connections

My premise is that we have spiritual connections that are within ourselves and around us. We find these at quiet times when we meditate or even when we're doing a walking meditation and as we move through various parts of our lives and keep our minds and hearts aware of our spiritual connections. These connections are also found when we reach out to other persons and sense an understanding of what we were seeking together­a better world and more understanding among peoples. We find them in our religious communities. A much larger percentage of people are seekers.
Another way of looking at this is to see the connections from the depths within each of us with those of other persons. And that we have these connections with the universe is revealed by strong evidence: We each see the same physical universe: the trees and people around us; the distant views of where we are; the stars above us. Each person could see and describe it in a completely different way. Yet you and I will look at red sunset and we would be able to communicate that each of us is indeed seeing a red sunset ..
Within our spiritual communities we become busy with the procedures and activities of our group and begin to lose touch with why we are really together. I invite you to follow along with me to help ourselves to build those connections.
First let's sit back, close our eyes, relax our feet, our legs, our middles, our hearts, our minds -and feel the wonderful presence of our self. And now in this relaxed state let us
1. Listen to that still, small voice within ourselves that is calling for high purposes and goals of sharing.
2. Think of other persons you know who are following along the path that you are following and that you want to join; for example the person who finds joy in artistic expression to share a way of perceiving our spiritual journey ­seeing our friend who is always there for us when we need a helping hand with building something or making machines work better for us or preparing complicated paper work.
3. As you start to think of persons near you, think of persons across the town, the state, the nations who are also trying to contact with each other and a universal force. Suddenly we can see the faces of starving children, of persons hit by the ravages of war, of persons facing successfully great odds to build a better world for themselves and for their loved ones and neighbors.
4. In this world view, we start to think of something that brings us all together ­ a universal force that is always there no matter whether we are dealing with persons and thoughts that are near or far away, with great literature, with theological writing, with philosophical treatises. In our still relaxed position we find that we can still listen and feel thoughts that are coming from that universal force that affect our lives
Suddenly we have a perspective parallel to the one when we are at a mountain top where we can look and not only see the slope below us where we have climbed the mountain top but the ridges and the ridges beyond and clouds in the distance far above us­and even more valleys and ridges that we can see. And we can sense a bit of that omni presence and we realize that that universal force is not only around us and connecting people everywhere but is really a part of us.
With this picture in mind and inour hearts and in our souls, we can step ahead to do what I call Unitarian Universalist evangenalism. But sometimes to cover up that word that is sometimes used for thrusts that we could not call our own, we some times use the word outreach. By whatekver name we now seek to spread the word to all so that we have some keys that will lift our hearts, help us to embrace others, and to connect with the universal force that gives us the inner strength to face each day with joy and beauty.
May our thoughts at this time in whatever form and in whatever form and in any patterns we may have developed in this time together (that's positive thoughts) may draw upon you for stepping forth by opening your eyes and your hearts to building spiritual connections.
[insert here applications to each of the key words in the title.]
A Vision for Me and Others*
This picture came to me:
In the act of running from one place to another in a very busy life
It seemed as though everything stood still ­ one foot on the ground;
One up in the air ready to take another step.
But no movement.
What is this, I cried. A warning of an end to come or a new beginning?
As if to answer, I stepped down with the upraised foot and prepared for action.
Something within me or around me led me away from the phrenetic pattern
I was in .
My foot came down upon the ground. I tread lightly feeling the joy of relaxed movement;
Stepping ahead to do the things that were truly important to me.
I saw as though for the first time eyes of each person I met seeking a connection with
something great within themselves and even greater around them.
I was able to be walking with persons in my community into wider and wider circles
around the world .
I was transported with a feeling of unison and of recognition of the caring and
deep concern that exists within all hearts ­
Although sometimes covered by fear and actions to conceal that fear.
My light steps brought me up a mountain trail with sureness of foot and spirit,
And when I reached the peak, I felt on my shoulder a spirit from deep within my being
that was like a hand caring and showing understanding and appreciation
for the journey I had taken.
I felt tremendous joy as I went on to share this deep experience with others
as I do with you today.
Where are your feet? What action will they take?
"Get the bloated nothingness out of the way and let the devine circuits flow through." Emerson

*Dictated Oct. 29, 20021 as I drove down to be a teaching assistant for Tiny Tots Nursery in Sacramento for a chance to be with my grandson Christopher.
Each cell has many rooms. And the total of a cell is mostly empty. And most of ourselves is empty space. Within the cell there is much energy and rapid movement.
Paul Pearsall, Ph.D., writes about cellular memory in his book entitled, The Heart's Code: "If information is carried in the energy of the heart and circulates within the cells, and if energy cannot be destroyed, whatever memories of a life experience anyone has ever had may be able to become our own individual memories. Cellular memories may be experienced as representations of universal, archetypal, infinitely shared memories that represent the collective consciousness."
"FORM is emptiness, and EMPTINESS is form" --Buddhists have known that for more than 2,500 years. "The existence of all things is EMPTINESS" states the Heart Sutra, one of the best known ancient Buddhist texts
How do we access the Inner Healer within? When we use Cellular Memory Release (CMR) techniques, we are using to access the Inner Healing wisdom that is natural to all of us. The Inner Healer has been with us since the conception of time. It is a part of us that knows exactly where the imbalance is, its roots and the way to correct it. It also knows how many layers of the must be released to allow the natural Life Energy or to flow freely through our system.
"Sooner or later we all discover that the important moments in life are not the advertised ones, not the birthdays, the graduations, the weddings, not the great goals achieved. The real milestones are less prepossessing. They come to the door of memory unannounced, stray dogs that amble in, sniff around a bit and simply never leave. Our lives are measured by these."
~ Susan B. Anthony
March 30, 2003: I'm now reading another book that is on the same wave length as my talk:
Jane Nelsen, Ed. D., From here to Serenity, Four Principles for Understanding Who You Really Are. Roseville: Prima Publishing, 2000. 214pp. . . Jane and I studied writing under Bud Gardner. She is a highly successful author of many books now. Her principles are: Free yourself from the filters of your thought system; understand how feelings can act on a personal compass; improve relationships by understanding and respecting differences; learn how to overcome depression, anger, or any negative feeling.
She says on p. 22 "...when you take thoughts from your thought system seriously, you block your spiritual source and lose access to your inner wisdom and inspiration." [My take on this is that when I relax, meditate, cut out the filters of judging and bias, and expect something (anything, whatever comes to me in this relaxed state) that I will see things in a wonderful light that guides me to positive actions in my life.]