Espanol | Italiano | 日本
Carol's Column
FROM FEAR TO FLOW

In the past few months I invited readers to send in your questions to this column. Craig from Iowa writes, "It is now 3:00 am and I have just finished reading The Celestine Prophecy. I could not sleep and went to the website looking for help with the 6th Insight [about clearing our past and understanding how we are trying to solve the life questions our parents gave us]."

"Fourteen months ago, I left my job of thirty-one years. I had worked my way up from being an entry level supply clerk to managing thirty-five employees in several different departments with a four million-dollar budget. I had no other job to go to and no plans. I still have no idea what I will do next. Until last month when my insurance ran out, I was being treated for anxiety disorders (which I fear may be keeping me from finding a new job.) On my last visit to the clinic, the psychologist suggested I read The Celestine Prophecy. I thought you would like to hear from someone who is right smack dab in the middle of changing directions.

"I don`t know what I'm going to do next. The anxiety and stress over not having a job, running out of money, etc. has pretty much consumed me. The book helped me a lot, but I think I have a long way to go."

I chose Craig's question because I think his situation reflects what a lot of us are feeling during this period. Once we let fear dominate our thoughts we start a cascading syndrome where we start envisioning the worst everywhere in our lives. No wonder we are anxious! So Craig, let me make a few comments based on the remarks in your email ...

QUITTING YOUR JOB

It sounds as if you chose to quit your job for a good reason. If your anxiety disorders were happening during the last job, then it sounds like your move to change something in your life was a good one.

FOCUS ON YOUR STRENGTHS

You have an excellent ability (and track record) for starting over. You went from an entry level job to a very high and responsible position. You have the ability to stay with something for a long time (your thirty-five years on the job). Now you are in the second half of your life. You have the opportunity to take that same set of skills and even more importantly, maturity, into another challenge. This time, you may want to consider creating a small business out of your home-something which gives you more control over your life. Look to your most basic, life-long, innate interests and talents. What are you good at? What do you love to do? You've probably been thinking a lot about this, but maybe the anxiety disorder keeps telling you something, like "Yes, but….I can't do that because…." People who are thinkers often make the mistake of trying to think everything through to a perfect plan before ever testing out their ideas.

CONFRONT THE FEARS

Write down all the fears that come up in the middle of the night. Look the anxiety in the eye. Look at the worst thing that could happen and imagine how you would actually handle it. Our greatest fear is that we are going to be given something we cannot handle. A powerful affirmation statement is, "No matter what happens I'll handle it." You already have done this!

INTUITIVE ANSWERS ARE COMING

Also, we don't always trust that quiet, small voice that offers a new suggestion. Many times I have spent an hour in a consultation with someone who has told me emphatically how confused they are and that they don't know what to do. However, at just about the end of the hour, they casually mention something they have really been considering but haven't yet brought to our conversation! Many of us don't trust our intuition and dismiss what could be a very good idea! We focus so much on our doom and gloom that we get paralyzed. So Craig (and the rest of you readers), what kinds of persistent creative work ideas have you been having?

PUT A POSITIVE SPIN ON YOU AND YOUR SITUATION

Working around fear is sometimes a minute-by-minute discipline! We have to go back to what we know works, such as keeping an open mind about what tomorrow will bring and affirming that good people are even now coming into our lives to help us open doors.

To shift to a higher vibration reframe a negative into an open-ended positive. For example, instead of talking about yourself as unemployed, try telling people that you are currently available for employment!

LISTEN TO INTUITION

When we need an answer, we usually get a response through a direct thought coming to us or from a message given by another person. Instead of steeping your thinking in worry thoughts, get in the habit of noticing when the fear pattern sets in and switching gears. As tempting as it is to scare yourself with thoughts about money, (some of us are very motivated when we're frightened!) let it go. Keep busy with something that gives you a feeling of accomplishment. Go outside and take a walk. Offer to wash your neighbor's car. You want to break that worry cycle as often as you can because it's not a productive habit. Believe it or not, you'll be creating possibilities for yourself when you silently ask something like, "Today I ask for Universal support in paving the way for a steady stream of abundance and joyful livelihood."

FOLLOWING THROUGH ON SUGGESTIONS BRINGS NEW LEARNING

I want to acknowledge your following through on your doctor's suggestion to read The Celestine Prophecy. Taking action that opens us to new learning is how our next opportunities show up for us. Someone mentions something, which takes us to the next doorway. Who knows what is beyond that door? There is a higher purpose in your coming into contact with the information in the book at this time in your life.

GIVE YOUR TIME TO SOMEONE WHO NEEDS A HAND

Try to find a way to do some service in your community. Keep busy and involved to keep your spirits up. Giving time to others rewards you far more than you may realize. Again follow your instincts and you may just put yourself in the way of a possible job somewhere that you never would have considered otherwise.

FIND A GROUP FOR JOB-SEEKERS

Many communities have on-going groups for people looking for work, and it's a good way to help structure your time in a positive way.

TAKE A PART-TIME JOB

Look around for a short-term job in a coffee-house or bartending for a catering company as a way to make a little money, have fun, and keep your day flowing. I remember Anne's story (When Life Changes, Or You Wish It Would, p. 42.) In her fifties, she was fed up with her career and quit a very good position. She bought a van, packed up her most important belongings, and traveled around the country for two years. She followed her intuition about where to go, found part time jobs everywhere (fun ones with accommodations in national parks), supported herself, and had an exciting adventure exploring anything that caught her attention.

LEARN SOMETHING NEW

So many times when we have a demanding job, we wish we had time to develop an interest or skill. Needless, to say Craig, you are in the perfect position to do something you have always wanted to do. There usually are adult education classes available that are low-cost and surprisingly varied in what they offer by extremely good teachers. Or teach one yourself! You are on the brink of a whole new life, even though you just can't see the big picture yet.

I'd love to have other questions from readers for next month's column!

Happy June,
Carol Adrienne

 
LIVE WITH PURPOSE EACH DAY

Each of us dreams of reaching a point at which we finally have it all together. Often we assume that today doesn't really count. It's just another day. But this day is an entire and beautiful gift, full of physical sensations and a range of emotional responses-from joy to upset or even grief. Each day we receive information about who we are and why we are here-if we choose to become conscious of the messages or synchronicities.

Most of us think that we have to work hard to find the big, definitive Life Purpose so that then, and only then, we can be happy. The truth is that each day, each moment is the only time you have in which to feel authentic, fulfilled, and even joyful. There's no waiting to find purpose.

Your life purpose was chosen before birth. This inborn organizing force silently attracts people and information directly related to what you need to know in order to make immediate choices. For example, has someone recommended a book to you this week? Why do you think this book was brought to your attention? Where might it fit into what you are working on now? Has someone mentioned any other resource? Be sure to follow up on things that come into your life when you are searching for a lead, an opening, or a new opportunity. You may even take a wrong turn and wind up in the right place.

Two days ago I bought two pairs of shoes that were a tiny bit too big in the heel, but that were very close to shoes that I had been looking for in several different stores. I was rather at my wit's end to get this shoe problem solved (Do any of you resonate to this tendency to get an idea in your head and then push until you make it real? Especially in the case of the right shoe for the right purpose?!) So, the shoes were nearly right, and the enterprising young clerk sold me insoles which made them fit better. He suggested I have them glued in permanently under the inner part of the shoe.

When I took the insoles to my local shoe repair guy to have them glued, he looked at my new shoes with the disdain of a craftsman who only works in leather and who doesn't trust enterprising shoe sales people under the age of 50 (he grilled me about where I bought these shoes and who sold them to me.) He told me a whole long story about how these were not the right insoles and that I should take them back. Furthermore, he went on to outline the whole bleak outlook of the current state of the shoe industry according to his experienced eye. At the time, I was somewhat annoyed (but also amused) at his taking so long to tell me how disappointing and poorly made of synthetic materials my new shoes were, and how I needed to take the insoles back and get my money back. Okay, one more errand to do.

This morning I found the shoe store receipt and went to put it into my wallet so I could return the insoles next time I was near that shoe store. Well, Lo, and behold my wallet was not in my purse. I remembered that I had had it the night before when I showed my YMCA membership card at my yoga class. At 7:59 am, I jumped in the car, and raced over to the yoga center and found that my wallet had fallen out of my purse in the little storage units where we put our belongings. It was still there, twelve hours after it had fallen out of my purse! Now, if I had not been thinking about returning the insoles, and putting the receipt into my wallet, I might not have noticed the missing wallet until tomorrow! Chances are slim it would have still been there.

It's fascinating to me how even small movements of our minds and intuition help us stay on track. What gets in the way of following this intuitive guidance is tuning out of consciousness about what we are doing-through concentrating on anxieties and feeling overwhelmed, being very busy, or thinking about the next thing before we've finished the current thing. I should have noticed when I left the class that my purse felt too light-not having my bulky wallet in it. But last night I was upset by some things that had happened during the day, and was not being truly present with what I was doing-even after the wonderful yoga session, which did help calm me down. Now I realize I was not really paying attention to the world around me.

We are all going to get upset at things. It happens virtually everyday when you think about it. It's the nature of being human. If you aren't upset at this moment, you will be as soon as one of three things happens: 1) Your intention to do, be, or have something is thwarted; 2) You are not able to deliver a communication and have someone hear it or agree with it; or 3) You have an expectation that is not fulfilled.

When a breakdown occurs that upsets us, we experience it as a threat. Without consciously realizing it we go into an old, familiar survival. We immediately start to thrash around in a mix of favored emotions-blame, guilt, anger, shame, minimization, justification, feeling helpless, or resignation that this kind of thing always happens to us, and this just goes to prove how...

When we are threatened we feel a loss of power. Actually, when we are dealing with an upset it has already happened, which means that we are always dealing with upsets in the past. What we are upset about now is not actually about the present as much as it about how it is attached to upsets we've had in the past. Each upset is related to string of very old upsets. The next time you experience being upset, notice what you are doing and thinking about. How are you re-living upsets you had in the past? What kind of story are you telling yourself about the upset? Just notice how this story is a big piece of your life story. I never get listened to. No one pays attention to me. I always buy the wrong thing. I'm not supposed to succeed. I don't have what it takes, and this proves it once again. Life is scary. Etc. Etc.

Start to get clear about what the events are that are happening to you without your story explaining it. Just see what is happening. Resist the temptation to make it all about you (this is a hard one, isn't it?!) One man in a class reported that he always gets angry and upset when traffic gets in his way. The other night he took a wrong exit and had to go by city streets which normally would irritate him because he'd have to wait at stoplights at each block. He'd be losing time, and waiting at stoplights was something he took pains to avoid. It was important to him to feel that he knew how to take shortcuts and outsmart the system. For some reason, this time he realized he could unhook from that automatic response, and he actually drove to the class calmly and with a peaceful frame of mind. Now, if traffic is not one of your big issues, you might say, well, so what? What's the big deal that he had to wait for stoplights? But for him and his automatic way of being, it was a big deal to have more control over the kind of day he was going to have.

We each have our automatic responses to upsets and trigger points. Starting today why not have fun noticing yours? Start asking youself, Can I just give up this big need to be upset right now?

Have a great month!

Happy May,
Carol Adrienne

 
TAKING ACTION FROM A HIGHER PURPOSE

The world turns when you make a contribution to the whole.

When you get excited about something, how often do you take a step to "forward the action, or put it on the back burner to slowly boil away?" When your intuition flashes a mental image across the screen of your mind, do you see it as significant, or do you let it go with an inner response such as, "I'm too busy." Or "Somebody should do that." Inspired action is inherently energizing for the person doing it, and seems to catalyze synchronistic responses that help fulfill the purpose.

My friend, Chicago bandleader, Steve Cooper is yet again an example of how to follow your heart, embark on a new path of possibility, and enjoy the jet stream of synchronicity. Last summer, Steve went to a book signing and lecture at Transitions, a bookstore in Chicago and was impressed by the author, John English, who wrote The Shift: An Awakening. According to Steve, the book is a novel about a third political party, which has the highest integrity, always tells the truth, makes the environment their number one concern, and is dedicated to ending self-serving politics. The book is based on current political characters and real situations and describes a positive potential future for America. Steve writes, "The story, similar to The Celestine Prophecy, is told in a spiritual context that involves telepathic messages, prophecy, shamans, and so forth. I thought the author's lecture was wonderful. At first, I wasn't that interested in reading a fiction book, but wound up buying a copy."

ACTION FOLLOWS INTUITION

A few weeks later, Steve read the book and became really excited by it. He said the thought came to him, "This book can change the consciousness of America and the world." After a week of thinking this, he felt the book needed to get more publicity. He says, "I thought that nothing will happen unless I do something. All my life, I've achieved what I wanted by taking action. All my success in the music business (and even finding my wife to marry) was because I went out and did things myself instead of waiting for someone to help. Right then and there, I decided to do something outrageous! I decided to send a letter to every bookstore in the country and bring the book to their attention. My wife and I don't make much money, but I knew I'd get it done."

Several weeks later, Steve's letter was done, and he printed a thousand copies. He ordered mailing lists of book stores in five states, and enlisted the envelope-stuffing aid of family friends. "My wife and I know a family where the father died and the mother has eight children. Six are still in the house, so we help them out from time to time. I knew those kids would love to earn some money and get a free piano lesson from me!

THE NEXT ACTION FALLS INTO PLACE

"We did 800 envelopes for starters. After we were done, on that same day, I looked up the John English's website. It turned out he was doing a radio interview in ONE HOUR! I couldn't believe the coincidence of looking at his website that day and at that time! The Internet connection kept cutting out, but, when they gave the call-in number, all the numbers came through loud and clear for just a moment. I had been thinking all week that I wanted to contact John English to tell him what I was doing. He had no idea that anybody was doing this!

"I called the station and I was the FIRST caller. I told the story of how I was so inspired by the book that I'm sending a letter to every bookstore in the country. I heard this long silence. English was totally floored and speechless! He confided that he felt the book wasn't getting much promotion, and that maybe he should give up on the project. He has done shamanic training, so he knows how the Universe helps people, but he was really surprised and touched by my taking the initiative to promote his work.

RECEIVING UNIVERSAL SUPPORT

Steve reports another coincidence that happened on the day he went to buy 800 stamps for the mailing. "The gold mining stocks I own had an explosive day. I don't make much money, but I study the stock market. I've owned gold mining stocks for almost two years, and on that done day, I made half my entire year's income! It paid for the cost of the first thousand stamps and also the next thousand I plan to buy. So the Universe is helping me out! Oh yes, another nice coincidence. While surfing the Internet, I found a company that sells a whole package of mailing lists for every bookstore and library in the country for only $75! Normally this would cost thousands of dollars. So now I've got all my labels for the whole country."

According to Steve The Shift: An Awakening started from an Amazon.com sales ranking in the 900,000's Amazon.com and recently shot up to the 60,000 range. "I thought it was a mistake," he says, "Not only a big improvement, it is a small miracle.

John English came to my local bookstore again in March for a lecture series. I got to see him in person for the first time since my phone call to the radio show. It was a wonderful "reunion." He told me the book distributors are reporting greatly increased sales. So, I'm sure my "save the world" project had some help in all this! John is a wonderfully calm and non-judgemental person. He trusts the ideas in the book will become popular in the mainstream when people are ready for it. He KNOWS it will happen - he's just not sure when. My feeling is that our present path could really change in a heartbeat. But the human race makes things so complicated!

You, too, can make a difference today. Sometimes what's required in the moment is to just take the extra step to really listen to family, friends, and colleagues. If you can manage to stay present and curious, without getting attached to the "drama" of what's going on, you may find your own creativity and fulfillment greatly increases.

Happy April,
Carol Adrienne

 
MUSIC, MISSION, MONEY

MG writes from Fort Worth, Texas: "Each day the my life's work becomes clearer. Over the past year, I've been yearning to go back to school for a Master's Degree in Spanish Literature. Through your books and training classes, I've uncovered these major passions in my life: Music - I'm definitely a musician at heart; Yoga - I practice every day and meditate consistently; Language - I have traveled all over Central and South America; and lastly - Saving the Earth I'm a vegan and detest how animals are being tortured for human consumption and vanity.

"During the class I did with you, I decided several things. I am going to follow my passion for music by learning to play the piano and write music as often as I can. I am going to look inside myself and realize that my environment is a mirror of my soul. I am going to appreciate everything around me and not take anything for granted. I know in my heart that I'm on the right path.

"Deep in my heart, I want to attend the University of California at Berkeley. Some work colleagues have told me horrifying stories of how drastically expensive California is. I'm generally not driven by money, and have saved ones year's salary so that I could go back to school and live in Northern California. I didn't seem worried about it six months ago; now I've become disillusioned by something I haven't even tried. How do I overcome this "fear" of not having enough money in order to do what I believe in the depths of my soul is part of my life's work and mission?

"My other alternative is to take the easy road out, and move to Austin Texas and attend school there, where it is more affordable. Austin has somewhat of a California-like atmosphere-but is this just a compromise because it's more affordable? How do I use this new-found wisdom that I have about my life purpose and translate it into action that is not ruled by money?"

Dear MG. These are great questions. Let's breakdown your concerns into specific parts. Whenever we have these confusing mind-conversations, we need to stop and clarify our motivation (what we really want-the most important value) and review the fears to see what we need to handle in order to move forward. One simple way is to ask yourself to rate your motivations and options on a scale of 1 (low) to 10 (high). For each option let a number arise in your mind for how important it is to you. Here are the competing desires and options you mentioned. In parentheses I added corollary desires/outcomes:

 

  • Deep desire to learn piano and compose music (be able to have the time for this)
  • Practice yoga regularly (be able to have the time for this)
  • Obtain a Master's degree in Spanish Literature (would a degree lead to a teaching position? Have you thought about what you'd like to do after that? It's okay if you haven't!)
  • Attend University of California, Berkeley (because it's the best school for Spanish Literature?)
  • Live and attend school in Northern California (wanting to live in California might be a separate desire from attending school.)
  • Attend school in Austin (more affordable, inspiring community)
  • Not feel I am compromising
  • Let's also clarify the various components underlying what you feel about the idea of "compromising:"

     

  • EMOTIONAL. What would you be "giving up" by not going to UC Berkeley? (A prestigious Master's degree? The best program in Spanish? The chance to live in the Bay Area?)
  • INTUITIVE. What feels odd about taking the easier path by going to Austin?
  • PRACTICAL. Go online and check newspapers or other apartment listings.
  • COMPARE OPTIONS. Make two spending plans about tuition, books, travel, and living costs for each area. Compare to what you have saved. Yes, it sounds time-consuming, but it's worth it. Don't guess (or be fearful) about the money-be specific. You'll have a better picture of what and why you are making certain choices.
  • COMMITMENT. Are you willing to work to supplement your savings if that's what it takes to attend Berkeley and live in the Bay area?
  • OTHER POSSIBILITIES. Have you considered a third alternative? Often we get stuck in either-or thinking and the real answer lies in another option!
  • REAL GOAL. Is the real goal to get a master's degree and change your career focus, or to spend an interesting year in school in the Bay area?
  • EXPERIENCE AND FEEDBACK. Have you visited UC Berkeley to get a feel intuitively if this is the right place?
  • It sounds to me like you are focusing on the "fear of money" raised by your colleagues as a way to avoid making a decision to move on. You mentioned that you see the outer world as a mirror to your inner world. It's interesting how your inner doubts might be being expressed by your colleagues' warnings about California. Once you get clear, you won't find naysayers in your life anymore.

    Get some more information, let your intuition "cook" your findings, and if you really think UC Berkeley is what's going to make you happy in the long run, commit to doing whatever it takes to make that work. Remember, you not only have created a good standard of living as a working person, you have also managed to include your creative interests and yoga. Living in California to go to school doesn't mean you have to stay here forever if you find that you prefer a lower cost of living. You are a highly successful and motivated person that can create another great situation. Anything is possible!

    So here's the summary:

     

    1. RATE OPTIONS. By using the intuitive scale of 1 to 10, identify your top priority at this time in your life. Identify your second and third priorities.

     

    2. STAY CURRENT. Make sure that the desire to go UC is a current deeply held desire. Identify the three reasons you want to go there.

     

    3. IDENTIFY THE IDEAL. Write down a description of the ideal situation. The ideal is defined as what makes your heart lift with joy. When you focus on the ideal you will get amazing results to match that energy!

     

    4. BE POSITIVE. Talk enthusiastically about your dream to people (e.g., "I love the idea of getting a master's degree in Spanish literature.")

     

    5. GET THE FACTS. Fear often comes from lack of information. Be clear about how far your money will go without having to working while in school.

     

    6. STAY COMMITTED AND FLEXIBLE. If the high cost of living and going to Berkeley would take you away from your yoga and music time commitments, it's okay to change your mind without it feeling like you are giving up the whole dream.

     

    7. FOLLOW SYNCHRONICITY. Notice what new information comes in (e.g., you might hear about another program in a foreign country.)

     

    8. GO WITH THE FLOW. Taking the path of least resistance or the "easiest" might allow you to include more of your priorities. It doesn't have to mean a copout. By visiting Berkeley or starting the application process, see how you feel. Is there a flow? An excitement in your belly? Then go for it!

    (Readers ... Please feel free to submit your own questions for consideration in future columns! Apologies if I am unable to answer all requests. Carol Adrienne)

    Happy March,
    Carol Adrienne

     
    A PASSION FOR BEAUTY

    Your life path is a living canvas of changing scenes and shifting colors -- a stage with an ever-flowing cast of characters. Your destiny (script) is shaped by your passions, beliefs, choices, actions, setbacks, and successes. Deep passions are core values that call us into action throughout life. Some of us have a passion for political action, sports, cooking, business, art, dancing, or music. A passion for beauty resides in each of us. When awakened, its call connects us to a higher order.

    We are meant to meet certain people and take away an idea, inspiration, or piece of knowledge. I met RUTH DRAYER years ago in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Friends had urged each of us to meet because it seemed we had so much in common-we were both divorced, interested in art, and had two small children enrolled in the same school. We finally met at a social gathering in 1974. A casual remark about wanting to change my name led Ruth to offer to do a numerology reading for me. Her reading opened the door to a subject, which was to become a fascination and, surprisingly, a central part of my life's work.

    Journey of Soul Mates

    Still good friends, Ruth and I keep in touch with each other's projects. Now living in New Mexico, Ruth is the author of an exciting new book, WAYFARERS: The Spiritual Journeys of Nicholas & Helena Roerich. Obviously soul-mates, the Roerichs-she a writer of spiritual philosophy and he an artist and world-wide teacher of transcendental ideas on art and beauty-were an exotic pair. Their mysterious adventures and work during the early 1900's have not, until now, been fully explored and understood. Ruth's book on their lives and teaching is the result of years of arduous work digging in old records, travel to India, and personal interviews. Both the Roerichs' story of bringing a message of truth and beauty in difficult times, and Ruth's own struggle of bringing this book to fruition can remind us that despite difficulties, our Soul's work will be done. Our life purpose functions as a thread, which tugs us through discouraging difficulties and keeps us connected to what really matters.

    The Call of Color

    "I have a tremendous love of color, which has propelled me for many years," says Ruth, now an age-less sixty-seven. "For years I tried to figure out what I was meant to do with color. It was color that connected me to Nicholas Roerich. I first saw his paintings at the Nicholas Roerich Museum in New York City. Never before had an artist's work affected me the way his did. His colors and visions stayed in my mind for days. I dreamed about them all night long. Who was this person who could create art that could touch me so deeply?'"

    Ruth, who had belonged to a spiritual organization for over twenty years, found out that her teacher had visited the Roerichs' son in India years before. She was also given the name of a woman who had once lived for a few months with this son in Bangalore, India. "When I visited her, I remember standing in front of a print of one of Roerich's painting and thinking to myself, 'I commit to doing whatever it takes to bring this work into the consciousness of America.' I continue to wonder to this day, what possessed me to do such a thing?"

    Ecstasy and Fear

    The call of our destiny can often seem too big, too scary, too much-and yet the deep intuitive knowing pushes us beyond our comfort zone. Ruth remembers feeling ecstatic for a couple of days after seeing the painting in the woman's apartment. "It was like a little door of heaven had opened up. In that instant I saw myself involved with Roerich's work." Ruth wrote to the Roerichs' son in India who responded almost instantly, closing his letter with: "Let us hope we will meet in the future." Never having had any desire to visit India before, when her mother volunteered to give her the money she would need for the trip, Ruth knew it was confirmation, and made the arrangements. "When I saw how far away India was on the atlas map," she remembers, "I got so scared I had to close the book! But, in spite of my fears, there was no doubt about my going. I had never had such a strong compulsion."

    The Power of Beauty to Change the World

    Nicholas Roerich was born in St. Petersburg in 1874 and died in India in 1947. Early in his professional career, he was a set designer for Russian theatre and ballet. He passionately believed that beauty was the answer to the world's problems. He thought that if people would focus on beauty-if there were paintings in utilitarian places like subways and prisons-there would be no crime or illness. Ruth says, "His ideas about the importance of beauty lined up exactly with what I believed, for I had come to the same conclusion while staying in an Italian village in 1977. There, despite illness and other difficulties, I realized that beauty makes everything bearable. As a painter, Roerich was a master colorist. Extremely bold in his treatment, he'd paint red next to orange, next to green, next to purple. Color had not been used this way before."

    Roerich was also a well-known and avid archeologist. While staying at the home of a colleague on the way to a dig, he met his future wife, Helena. Five years younger, Helena came from aristocracy. Roerich was captivated by her youth, beauty, and intelligence. Despite the objections of her aristocratic family, he started courting her. Eventually, the family allowed them to marry after she recounted three dreams in which her deceased father was telling her to marry him. They married in 1900 and had two sons.

    Of one mind, they shared all their interests. "With Helena, Nicholas naturally began to study the world's sacred literature and teachings of Buddha, Lao-Tsu, the Indian mystics, and the Theosophical Society," says Ruth. "After they were married, Helena translated Theosophist, Madame Blavatsky's, now-famous book, The Secret Doctrine from English into Russian. Later her writing helped bring the discipline of Agni yoga to the world.

    "My book, Wayfarers, is different because most of what I had read about Roerich's work as an artist seemed very narrow in focus. I wanted to know what was going on in the world around them--in music, literature, spirituality, and politics-all things which would have influenced this amazing couple. Filling out this tapestry of research led me to put together pieces of the puzzle that no one had connected before. While most biographers talked about his involvement with the Theosophical Society, few people realized how deeply influenced he was by Buddhism. Before the Bolshevik revolution, Buddhism and Communism were seen to have many similarities. Both of these philosophies appeared to be ways to help the down-trodden masses."

    Shambhala

    In 1912, a lama came from Tibet to St. Petersburg and received permission from the Czar to build a Buddhist temple. Roerich became involved in that project. "This lama," says Ruth, "was the first person to talk to him about Shambhala. Shambhala is considered by the Buddhists to be a place one achieves when one is sufficiently evolved. It's also considered to be a non-physical plane of existence where the plan for humanity is held. I've noticed that the mere mention of the word Shambhala seems to light a fire in our hearts. That fire is our core desire to live in peace and beauty."

    Authenticity in Creativity

    Always directed by their spiritual guides, the Roerichs came to the United States in 1920. Among their many goals was the desire to create a school where all the arts were taught under one roof. They believed that people would be more fully developed if they expressed themselves in several mediums, rather than focusing on just one. Their innovative school in New York City attracted an amazing array of well-connected and creative people. At that time, American art was not considered very important. It was de rigeur to study art in Paris and educate oneself in European culture. Roerich, on the other hand, traveled all over America advocating not only the importance of art and beauty, but urging artists to stay home and paint their own truths.

    "Ironically," says Ruth, "Roerich's work was diminished by art critics because few other artists copied his painting techniques. However, my research in New Mexico, for example, where he taught for awhile, quickly revealed how his lectures catalyzed the formation of artistic societies in which artists supported one another in developing their own ideas. For instance, several artists in Albuquerque formed the Transcendental Painting group. Another group of artists known as Los Cinco Pintures (The 5 Painters) began the now-famous artistic enclave of galleries in Santa Fe known collectively as Canyon Road.

    "Roerich taught internationally and his message was always peace and unity. He didn't like borders or visas or licenses. Ahead of their time, both he and Helena, who almost always traveled with him, but usually stayed behind the scenes and wrote while he appeared in the public eye, were active feminists."

    Following their spiritual guidance they traveled to Central Asia where Roerich had dreamed of digging up hidden lost cities, crypt libraries, and tunnels leading to buried artifacts. He also wanted to paint a panoramic view of Central Asia. But their deepest desire was to search for signs of Maitreya-the prophesied Buddha to come. His appearance was predicted to signal the beginning of the prophecy of Shambhala, a time when humanity would live in peace and harmony.

    Do the Work You Were Meant to Do

    Ruth says, "Like the Roerichs, my guiding belief is that one person can make a difference. I don't spend time reading the newspaper or watching television I concentrate on doing my art and writing. I don't see the point of feeling helpless and talking about the problems of the world. I feel like I just have to keep doing my work, so that whatever I put out carries with it peace and beauty. I don't respond to angry emails about politics. Reading these things stops my flow, and I ask people not to send them to me anymore. When people ask me how I get so much accomplished on my various projects, I tell them it's because I don't watch TV! "I think color speaks a language that transcends words and goes right to your soul. There are lots of benefits in reading the writing of Helena Roerich, however, her words may not really speak to you. Yet when you see any of Nicholas Roerich's over 7,000 painting, nothing blocks you from getting their message."

    Roerich's output was prodigious considering he traveled almost continuously by yak, camel, and horse to far-away places. During his life, he was attacked for all kinds of things, such as being only after money and was denied re-entry into the United States because of income tax evasion. During their arduous four-year expedition to Central Asia, the Roerichs were held in captivity for four months on the border of Tibet. Accused of being communists and Bolshevik spies, Roerich died without ever finding out why they were held prisoners. Ruth says she found nothing in her research that indicated they were spies.

    "I think he was living on another plane of existence, focusing on spirituality, teaching, and his art," she says, "No one at that time understood what this couple was doing. This is the material I go into in the book. Though their lives were filled with adversity, they persevered in living their beliefs. The power of their philosophy is more relevant to us than ever.

    Everything Has a Purpose

    Everything in life is about the choices one makes. "You can choose to watch TV or you can choose to paint," says Ruth. "The choice for the Roerichs was to follow that deep spiritual call in their hearts.

    "Now that my book is done, I feel as if I had been preparing for it my whole life. I see that the place I was born, where I've traveled, the books I've read, the spiritual traditions I've studied, the music I've listened to all contributed to it. I don't believe adversity means you should stop doing something you are deeply committed to. For example, when I came back from India, I was so sick, the doctors weren't sure if I were dying or not. I was allergic to everything. Still, I would drag myself out of bed and write. Then for years, I kept getting turned down by publishers, who said 'This is beautiful. This is well-written. Good luck.' People told me that biographies are the hardest books to sell, especially if the person is not well-known. I was so happy recently when someone thanked me for writing this biography because biographies are the only way to learn of people you don't already know about. Through all those years, I didn't get paid a cent to do the research or write. But, how many times in your life do you get to have the feeling that you are really doing what you are meant to do?"

    Follow Intuitive Guidance to Develop Destiny

    Besides being an author and numerologist, Ruth's career as a painter is now taking center stage. The change in direction emerged from the intuitive voice. "When I was in India, I wasn't sure where home was going to be for me. Spirit gave me a clear message, 'You are going to move to Las Cruces and paint.' At that time I didn't paint or want to paint. Las Cruces? I didn't want to move there, either. What about my numerology, I asked myself? The answer came, 'You will always be a numerologist, and you are going to paint.''

    A few months later, a psychic fair brought Ruth to Las Cruces, New Mexico. In 1994 she wrote, The Power in Numbers: A Right & Left-Brained Approach. "It was the easiest assignment I could have had. Through it I learned that I could write and finish a book and I believe it was a necessary preparation to writing the Roerich book. Now I realize all that time I was researching and writing, I was also studying with a master colorist! How could I not paint? Just as Spirit predicted, I now live five miles away from Las Cruces, and I'm painting. I think all these things happened to get me to the painting, but I have no idea where it's going to take me."

    Ruth Drayer's book Wayfarers: The Spiritual Journeys of Nicholas & Helena Roerich (Hardcover, $39.95, Paperbound $29.95) and a companion video ($19.95) containing sixty of Nicholas Roerich's paintings and narrated by Ruth, including other books, videos, paintings, and original prints are all available at www.zianet.com/ruthdrayer. Or you can call toll free in North America on (888) 541-5381.

    Happy February,
    Carol Adrienne

     
    << Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Next > End >>

    Results 55 - 63 of 78