We Are Born of Water and Spirit #spirit #truebaptism #spiritualrebirth #water

July 25, 2017

Today, I met with a lovely young lady from the Caribbean, frontwho is highly intuitive, creative, a dancer, and a beautiful soul.  We share numerous points of connection, including the symbolism of rivers as divine flowing energy which channels through us.

After meeting with her in Silver Spring, Maryland, I rode the metro through DC, a long ride through the city and then back north to Rockville, MD. As we came out of the metro tunnel into Maryland, I heard Higher Consciousness tell me about the young woman and myself, “You are born of the same water and of the same Spirit.”  What a beautiful and meaningful metaphor for our shared spirituality!  Then, I realized that being ‘born of water and Spirit’ sounds like a metaphor for Christian baptism.

In Christian baptism, one (if immersed rather than sprinkled with water) goes under the water symbolizing dying to our old selves and rising to new life in Christ and being filled with the Holy Spirit.

What came to me on the metro, however, is that true spiritual baptism means completely letting go of the ego self, emptying ourselves, and allowing the flow of divine Spirit, or Divine energy-consciousness, to flow to us and through us to bless the world.

Now that’s a baptism worth believing in!  Being baptized with the flow of Spirit to us and through us can happen anytime and all the time, if we let it.  Of course, that is the point of baptism, to allow the Spirit to flow like life-giving water into the world to cleanse us, heal us, and make us ALL whole.

May it be so – and let the rivers of living water flow!

Love and Light,

Carol “Anandi”

Truth and Illusion: The Politics of Spirituality and How One Person’s Lie Is Another One’s Truth on Amazon.com

Highest Harmony Healing & Coaching


Posted in Channeled teachings, Inspiration, Interfaith Wisdom, Oneness teachings, Spiritual Blog, Spiritual teachings, Spirituality, Transformation, True Baptism, Uncategorized, Wisdom | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

From ‘There Is no God’ to God as Harmony #God #Harmony

One of the qualities I admire about atheists is that they have generally rejected a lot of really bad ideas about who God is.  From ‘the Man upstairs,’ to the judgmental, angry, and punishing ‘God,’ there are a lot of really inharmonious understandings of who or what God is.

While I understand and respect that the very word ‘God’ causes great difficulty for many people, I would like to invite us not to ‘throw the baby out with the bathwater’ by rejecting not only the word ‘God,’ but also any and all ideas about God.

My own personal experience that most shook up my concept of God occurred one morning in February or March of 2016.  I was meditating,* and felt this enormous sense of peace filling me and surrounding me.  What I was sensing was PERFECT PEACE.  There was not a vibration inside me or around me that was out of harmony with peace.

During this state of perfect peace, into my head came what I call the “Teacher Voice,” which said, “This … is … God.”  That thought soaked in for a second or so, and then my ego mind, which has been theologically trained and which therefore is greatly accustomed to reading about ‘God,’ speaking about ‘God,’ listening to words about ‘God,’ and writing about ‘God,’ objected, “No!  I want words!”

Of course, I then realized how utterly ludicrous that thought was, and returned gratefully, to that feeling of perfect peace.  I then realized, “If this is God, everyone will fall in love with God!”

Peace is an essential concept for humanity and divinity, as well as for our experiencing Oneness; however, in English, the word ‘peace’ does not convey the fullness of meaning that it does in other languages such as the Hebrew ‘Shalom.’

Increasingly, instead of peace, the Universe (God, Holy Spirit; call it what you will) has been placing the word ‘harmony’ in the center of my awareness.

First, back around early 2014, it came to me to brand the work I do as Harmony Healing and Harmony Coaching.  I named my business ‘Highest Harmony Healing & Coaching,’ because connecting with the highest levels of consciousness enables us to achieve greater harmony in life and to fulfill our highest potential.  Empowering my clients to make that harmonious connection and attain that harmonic fulfillment is my goal.

Moving forward a couple of years, after the presidential election of 2016, I had to tune in through meditation for help understanding how to respond to the resulting big shift in our collective life as humanity.  So, I meditated at 11:11 on 11:11, which was a Friday morning, and four harmony principles came to me to help us better get along.

The four harmony principles, as they came to me on 11/11/16, are:

  1. Humanity and Nature Are One.
  2. Humanity and Divinity Are One.
  3. Divinity and Nature Are One.
  4. We Are One.

Recently, it came to me that Harmony is another good word for God.  Just as we may describe or experience God as Love, or Justice, or Peace, or Bliss, all of these aspects are encompassed in the word ‘Harmony.’  So, I invite us all to consider that there is something woven throughout the nature of this universe that seeks not just homeostasis, but harmony.

Indeed, I invite us to consider that there is an energy/consciousness throughout the universe that creates harmony, and that this energy and consciousness of Harmony and which creates Harmony exists beyond the universe, and is the Source of the universe.

I can hear the objections already:  “You’re still just asking us to believe in God, and there is no such thing and there is no scientific proof of such a thing and if there were, why would it let bad things occur?”

Please notice that without freedom, we human beings do not experience harmony.  Thus any real God would be granting us freedom in a universe that freely evolves or devolves, such that things that we experience as ‘bad’ can and do occur.

And yet, we also experience harmony.  Have you ever noticed how great it feels when we are with a group of people, and everyone is getting along?  It does not really matter if it’s family or a work group, as long as everyone is getting along beautifully, we experience that harmony as something fantastic and delightful.

It occurs to me that what may be called the ‘Buddha Mind,’ refers to a remarkable ability to maintain an inner sense of harmony despite exterior circumstances.  Jesus Christ taught the practice of non-attachment, not by that terminology, but nonetheless, letting go of dependence on ‘things’ for our happiness and instead trusting completely in God for the peace in our inner being.  Jesus called that inner state of harmony ‘the kingdom of God.’  Jesus also invited us to live in ways that create an outer harmony among ourselves that may also be called the kingdom, or Reign of God.

Harmony is our birthright, and harmony, which includes love, is what we are happiest and most fulfilled creating together.  Harmony is an inner state of being that we can learn to create any time and all the time by learning to trust ‘God.’

What has enabled me to learn to trust God was mostly a lesson I learned directly from Buddha.  During meditation, Buddha taught me that the fundamental nature of reality is: “All Is Well.”  If you think about it, that state of being in which all is well is also perfectly harmonious!  And if we think further about it, the state of being in which “All Is Well” is a perfect description of Source, or God, as the fundamental nature and origin of reality.

So, if the Source of all that is exists eternally and infinitely in a state of being as “All Is Well,”  and if “All Is Well” and harmony are equivalent, then Harmony is another name for God.  All Is Well is the nature of God, and Harmony names that very essence which creates us, and which therefore intends for us ultimately, and as often as possible, and as consistently and permanently as possible, to experience Harmony.  That Source in which all is well intends for us to experience, and to assist in creating Harmony  – inside ourselves, outside ourselves, and among ourselves.

May it be so!

Love and Light,

Carol “Anandi”

* I have now been meditating for over 20 years (Raja Yoga and Kriya Yoga)

Truth and Illusion: The Politics of Spirituality and How One Person’s Lie Is Another One’s Truth, available in Kindle and paperback on Amazon.com


Posted in Health and Wellness, Inspiration, Interfaith Wisdom, New Thought Teachings, Oneness teachings, Personal Transformation, Spiritual Blog, Spiritual teachings, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Life With God #Life #God #Psalms #Interfaith #Multifaith

This past Sunday, I was privileged to get to preach at a congregation where I have been honored to preach a few times before.  I am so grateful to that congregation, small though it is:  Hyattstown Christian Church.  Even though I consider myself an interfaith spiritual teacher, healer, and life coach at this time, I am grateful for opportunities to return to my roots in Christianity.

Here, I would like to express some ideas that go beyond the traditional Christian view, to share a more universal message on this topic:  life with God.  I do understand that many people feel very uncomfortable with the word ‘God,’ and consider themselves atheists or agnostics; I welcome you and invite you to consider the message within and beyond the mere word ‘God,’ and then to comment on your experiences of ultimate essences such as peace, love, gratitude, and joy.

Speaking of interfaith, or multi-faith, the scriptures that moved me in formulating this message about life with God were actually the Jewish scriptures that were assigned as Lectionary Readings* for Sunday.  So, this message arose in the context of reading Zechariah 9:9-12, and Psalm 145:8-14.  I hope you’ll read them, if the Jewish and/or Christian traditions speak to you.

The first image portrayed in the Zechariah text is that of: “Lo, your king comes to you, righteous and saved, humble and riding on a donkey.” **  The powerful spiritual concept here is that the Divine comes to us, for the king represents God, as a faithful servant of God.

For all those times in life that we humans experience ourselves feeling lost and alone, how reassuring this is that God comes to us.  For all those times when we feel stressed, anxious, at wit’s end, and don’t know what to do next, we can trust that even in those moments of near panic, God comes to us.

For me, this is what the practice of meditation has confirmed over and over again.  The most notable time this occurred, for me, was one morning when I meditated to a state of complete peace.  I felt utterly peaceful.  Inside me and all around me was this energy of perfect peace.  There was not one vibration inside me or outside me that was out of harmony with this peace.  In this peace, I heard inside my head, what I call the Teacher Voice say, “This is God.”  That soaked in beautifully for a split second, and then immediately my theologically-trained ego-mind objected, “NO!  I want words!”  Of course, I then realized how ludicrous this is, and thought, “If this (peace) is God, then everyone will fall in love with God!”

Through meditation, I have also learned that we can also learn to breathe and invite God’s presence to come into us.  We can also breathe and invite God into us as Spirit, or as Holy Breath, or as peace, or love, even when we are not meditating, right in the middle of the challenges of life.

When we live life in peace, we are living with God.  When we make peace with one another, we are sharing God.

Psalm 145 gives us another clue about how to live life with God:  “All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord, and all your faithful shall bless you.”

Gratitude is such a powerful way to connect with God.  Gratitude opens our hearts up  to the powerful presence of God.  Gratitude can move us from from the negative, complaining, whiny, lacking, victim-consciousness, to the all the divine possibilities that can ensue from connection with God.

Gratitude acknowledges that we have received and are receiving divine gifts and divine presence every moment in our lives, even when it neither looks nor feels like it.  Everything in our lives is technically a gift one way or another.  We just have to be grateful for it in order to perceive the gift in it.

I do not write this from naive, Pollyanna perspective; rather, as I am writing, I am remembering being in relationship with an abusive partner who was also a healer.  He could channel such beautiful energy.  However, I remember one time when I had experienced him as being cruel and uncaring to me, and then encountered him when he was channeling healing energy and was meditative and peaceful.  I angrily shared my upset with him, and without taking in any of my concerns, he just remained in his own peaceful zone.

As I just now, years and years later, brought gratitude to this memory, I realized that what I am most grateful for was seeing his ability to dismiss all that was important to me.  At the time, I did not trust my own sense that this was the case, and choose to remove myself from the relationship, which is how I managed to get into and stay, for awhile, in an abusive relationship: I did not trust myself.

When we trust that God comes to us, and enters us through the Holy Breath of life in us, we can learn to trust ourselves more fully also.  When we learn ways to help us remain in this lovely energy of peace, we can learn what it is inside us that removes us from this divine state of being, for it is not what happens outside that removes us from divine, peaceful presence, but our own thoughts, fears, and limiting beliefs that remove peace from our own hearts and minds.

Buddha is ultimately the teacher I would like to thank for helping flesh out this lesson about “Life with God.”  Buddhists, please don’t stop reading just because I placed Buddha and God in the same sentence.  I have talked with Buddha.

Yes, you read that correctly, I have talked with Buddha.  More importantly, Buddha has talked with me.

Buddha taught me two most essential lessons that I count as lessons on how to live life with that which I call ‘God.’  The first lesson is “The Fundamental Nature of Reality,” which I have shared elsewhere here in this blog.  The second lesson is “The Keys to Enlightenment,” which I have also shared elsewhere in this blog.

Both of these lessons came while I was meditating.  (I have been connecting with and taught by Buddha and other Ascended Masters, including Jesus Christ, since May 2010.)

One morning, I was meditating after having a life experience about which I had been feeling extremely upset.  In the wee hours of the morning, when I had been not managing to sleep, the Teacher Voice had said to me, “All is well.”  That had brought me some peace.

When I later meditated, I sensed Buddha’s presence, and experienced him reminding me that ‘all is well.’  I then sensed Buddha prompting me (without words) to open Karen Armstrong’s wonderful, academic book called, “Buddha.”

I did so, opening very handily enough to the term ‘dhamma’ in the glossary.  (Dhamma is also dharma.)  Karen Armstrong gives this extremely helpful opening to the definition of Dharma:  “Originally, the natural condition of things, their essence, the fundamental law of their existence;” she goes on to explain that dharma has come to refer to religious teachings, etc.

Suddenly, it became crystal clear to me, that Buddha was telling me that the fundamental nature of reality is the state of being in which “all is well.”  By putting Buddha’s comment, “All is well,” with this definition of dharma as “the natural condition of things, their essence, the fundamental law of their existence, it becomes evident that the natural and I would add, divine law of existence is that “all is well,” and all is moving into ever greater states of perfect wellness, or wholeness, or “salvation.”

It even occurred to me that “All is well” functions as a name for God, or an affirmation of divine presence, if you will.

So, to experience ourselves as living life with God, we just need to trust that all is well, and to vibrate with this energy-consciousness of “all is well.”  When we trust that all is well and that divine presence is working to move everything into the wholeness of all is well, then we can continuously experience the very real presence of God, within us and with us, always.

To do so, we just need to let go of our fears and attachment to those desires that are interfering with our remaining in this state of energy-consciousness in which all is well.  And that, my friends, is what Buddha taught is is the key to enlightenment: release all else, and remain in the “All Is Well.”

Another way to say that might be: Remain in God.  Or, simply, live life with God.  It really is heavenly!

Love and Light,

Carol (Anandi)

*The Lectionary Readings come from the Revised Common Lectionary, a three-year program for reading the Bible in worship designed by a gathering of numerous Protestant denominations.

** I am indebted to James T. Butler, one of the scholars in an excellent commentary called Feasting on the Word, for the more literal translation “righteous and saved,” of the Hebrew phrase that is usually translated “triumphant and victorious.” Feasting on the Word, Year A, Vol. 3, p. 199.

Posted in Affirmations, Buddhist Teachings, Channeled teachings, Inspiration, Interfaith Wisdom, Meditation, New Thought Teachings, Spiritual Blog, Spirituality, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Accepting The ‘Son’ of God (or Daughter) #SonofGod #Christ #Awakening #Enlightenment #Salvation #Liberation

The Universe has recently been seeking to enlighten me, frontor re-enlighten me, as the case may be, about our true nature.  From multiple sources, including early morning reminders that life is just a dream as I have awakened (from dreams to awakened dreaming!), to emails from another spiritual writer, to an audio seminar by spiritual teacher Brent Phillips, as well as in readings in A Course In Miracles, the Universe has been speaking to me about our true nature, along with miracle mindedness, and the illusory dream of life.

Then, this morning, I read an article about Bernie Sanders grilling Russell Vought, nominee for Deputy Director of the Office of Management and Budget, about whether or not non-Christians are condemned.  Personally, I believe Bernie’s actual point was to raise the question as to whether Vought could separate church and state in order to serve as a civil servant justly upholding the law, but the way Bernie questioned Vought was itself questionable.  This political debate is, however, not the issue here.

The issue is a quote from the Bible which Vought had used in an article defending Wheaton College’s firing of a professor who stated that Muslims and Christians worship the same God.  Clearly, what I am about to write is not likely to make sense to people who believe that Christians and Muslims worship a different God, which view can only occur due to lower chakra understandings of the Bible*.

Truly enlightened understanding of ultimate truth only flourishes from the heart chakra up through the crown chakra.

The quote Vought used in the article was John 3:18, “Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.” (New International Version)  At issue here is, what does it mean to believe in the name of God’s one and only Son?

A Course In Miracles teaches that we are all the Son of God, and as I translate it, we are all the Son and Daughter of our Divine Mother/Father, and that one Offspring of God is salvific.  Christ is teaching us in A Course In Miracles, and I believe he also taught us in the original New Testament texts, that we are all Sons and Daughters of God, by virtue of attaining a certain consciousness, which I, along with Paramahansa Yogananda, would call Christ-Consciousness.  One could also refer to this elevated, or enlightened consciousness as the Buddha Mind, or enlightened consciousness.

Vought wisely responded to Bernie Sanders that all people are created in the image of God and therefore worthy of respect. That is a Christian view based on a text in Genesis, in the Torah, or Old Testament.

As souls living a human life, we are created in the Divine image, which in Genesis is also stated in the plural: “our image.”  Thus is God’s nature communal, or multiple, as in both feminine and masculine; at any rate God’s image is not stated here as singular, though it honors the Oneness of God within that “our image” concept.  Therefore, billions and billions of people can be created by God in “our image,” meaning, God’s image. I would suggest that it requires an infinite number of us in order fully to image God as humanity, and God exists infinitely beyond this human image.

Looking at ourselves as souls created in God’s image is a starting point for understanding our purpose on earth, but not a sufficient explanation of our “salvation” from the darkness, death, and decay of life on earth. We come to earth as souls separating ourselves out from the Divine Consciousness through a lowering of our vibration, i.e., “The Fall.”

We then develop an ego self as we become aware of our apparent (though not real) separateness from the Divine Self and from one another.  This separateness gives rise to pain as well as pleasure, as we experience the duality of this illusion of life in the universe, or this Maya, as it is called in Eastern thought.

We begin to awaken when we realize that we are spiritual in nature, and that this physical manifestation of the world is not the most real aspect of reality; that indeed, Spirit and manifestations of Spirit are more real and permanent than the physical world.

We become enlightened by stages as we energize our chakra system with both feminine and masculine energies as well as with love*.

As we become aware that we are one with God and one with one another, we become more and more enlightened as we then choose to live a life in service to others, and as we choose to align with Divine Will rather than our ego’s will, which appears as separate from Divine Will.  As we let go of attachment to the material world, we further attain higher degrees of enlightenment.  As we learn to perceive each and every situation as filled with Divine potential, despite the appearances or feelings we may be perceiving, then we can develop Miracle Mindedness and become One with the flow of pure potential in the Universe.

As we live for the larger purposes of the Divine Self rather than for our lower self’s purposes, we energize ourselves more and more as Divine Presence in this world.

What takes us one step further in Enlightenment, or Awakening, is becoming aware that we do not even exist as separate selves.  We are the Daughter or Son of God that God created us to be.  We are each individual manifestations of the Divine Presence, when we allow ourselves to be who we truly are, rather than our ego selves.

When we accept and choose this Divine manifestation of God-in-Us, we accept and choose the Son of God, or the Daughter of God, for we allow God to birth God’s Self in us.  This is salvific, for when we allow ourselves to empty ourselves so that God can always be manifest in us, then we no longer exist in separation, but rather in a continual state of Oneness, and in this state, we have been set free from the world of form, or duality, or Maya.

This liberation is our ultimate salvation, and it is experienced as heaven, or Nirvana, or Samadhi, here on earth and beyond.  It is Bliss.


What came crystal clear to me this morning is that “believing in the name of God’s only Son” refers to letting go of any sense of ourselves as separate beings and emptying ourselves, believing that God is birthing God’s energy/consciousness/Sonship/Daughterhood into ourselves so that God becomes manifest as us upon this earth.

Jesus also said that those who lose their lives for his sake (the sake of Christ-consciousness) will gain their lives.  In other words, if we let go of our life as separate beings who do what we want, and instead empty ourselves and let go of living life as we want, then we gain Life in God.

What better life could there be to gain than Life in God?

Who are we really?  Once we accept the Presence of God in ourselves fully, we become fully Daughters and Sons of God, forever, because that is who we already are; we just need to remember ourselves as that!

May we all accept our Buddha-nature, or Christ-Consciousness, or the Presence of the Divine in our emptiness.  May we all, like the most God-Realized soul I have had the privilege to meet, Dada J.P. Vaswani, realize that we are nothing and that God is All.

Love and Light,

Carol “Anandi”

*For an explanation of how lower chakras effect our views of the Bible, please see my new book:  Truth and Illusion: The Politics of Spirituality and How One Person’s Lie Is Another One’s Truth


Posted in New Thought Teachings, Oneness teachings, Philosophy, Self-Realization, Self-Realization Teachings, Spiritual Blog, Spiritual teachings, Spirituality, Truth vs Illusion, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What Is Needed?

Saturday was the seventh anniversary of what I call my

55075375 - caduceus symbol illustration drawn in vintage woodcut style vector

The Caduceus, or Staff of Hermes  Copyright: zoljo / 123RF Stock Photo

“Enlightenment Vision,” in which I was so incredibly blessed to meet and be blessed by numerous Ascended Masters.  I am so grateful for the remembrance of blessing and enlightened consciousness.  Lately, I have experienced a drop in consciousness and a lower vibration, as I have struggled with substitute teaching in some settings in which some of the children’s behavior has been, well, I can only call it outrageous and very unfit for creating an educational atmosphere.  This has brought up so much concern in me, and so much uncertainty about how to deal with the really disruptive behavior, that I lowered my vibration and consciousness.

This weekend, it was helpful to me to remember the blessed vision (there is a blog entry here describing it), and I tuned in to learn what I need to do differently.  First, I was reminded that I need to accept what others are doing as part of Life giving us all what is needed, and as part of what all the souls present together have agreed to experience.  Although my heart breaks to see such unmanageable behavior, which may have horrible consequences for children in the long run, as well as being so disruptive of the educational process in the moment, I have to acknowledge that, on a soul level, whatever is, is what is needed.

So, I have to practice more non-attachment in order to remain in the peace, despite the days like Friday, which started with the teacher in the room next door warning me that I might need to send two boys to her class (which I did), and which ended with me following another teacher’s advice just to stand in the door way for the rest of class (almost an hour) to prevent one boy from running out of the room.

Obviously, I could no longer teach the class while standing in the doorway.  Fortunately, a third teacher sent an older boy (maybe fifth grade), to help, and this older child helped perfectly, not only following my directions and requests, but also not allowing the boy in question to get away with some disruptive choices, and putting on a video for the class to watch.  What a waste of young minds, class time, and tax payers’ money.  All because we don’t teach parenting and we don’t teach holistically and we are not allowed to touch students, as in, we cannot just hold and hug a child to get them to stop acting out.  (That “passive restraint” in the form of a hug is a technique I was taught 35 years ago while working with autistic children.)

There is so much to that situation that I needed to process: from how do I pay attention to the students who deserve attention, (I did my best), to how do I help those who needed help (I did my best), to how to understand why the boys came back with behavior not at all improved after seeing the counselor, to how am I to make sense of that spiritually, to how did I need to improve myself and my behavior in that setting.  (By the way, this is a partially lower income school, and to me, it appears to have much less funding than other elementary schools in wealthier districts.  To me, it seems that they deserve twice as much funding in order to lower class size and to increase supplies and implement special programs.)

On the spiritual path, what is needed is always for us to work on ourselves, until we have attained that final Oneness with the Divine.

And so it is that on Saturday, I meditated, I contemplated, and I asked for guidance and insight to understand all of this.  What came to me on Saturday were six primary teachings.  First, as written above, to accept what is, and to trust that all the souls involved have asked for this experience so that we can grow spiritually.  Next, what came to me was that, when I don’t know what to do, I need to ask Source, “What is needed?”  Usually, I receive specific guidance and answers to questions like this, and I did in the case of working with such students.

The third realization that came to me Saturday was that God is always what is needed.  We may need to manifest God in a particular way, but God is the one who is always needed.  If you have not read many of my blog entries, please know that, to me, God is love, God is peace, God is bliss, God is wisdom, God is truth, God is strength, and God is harmony.  But God is often experienced as all of those things without words, simply as the energy of love, peace, and bliss; for instance, God is the experience of harmony.  God is always needed, the question is simply:  how do we incarnate God through ourselves as the wisdom or the love, the patience, the harmony that is needed?

The fourth realization that came to me was that, although there is so much that I long to help heal and transform in the world, the universe is just an illusion of space-time created so that we can remember our ultimate nature as part of the Divine Self.  So that, yes, my ultimate purpose and quest is still and always union with God.  It became clear to me that this experience of union with God, or Self-Realization is exactly the cure to the woes of the world.

Fifth, I experienced the masculine and feminine kundalini energies rising within me as creating love and fulfillment without the need of any other human being.  If you have not yet felt the snake-like rising of the kundalini energies through the two nadis, I invite you to learn to meditate in ways that will facilitate you doing so.  This is one of many reasons I teach Raja Yoga meditation: to facilitate the kundalini rising.  Through this experience, I received a feeling of completeness and a satisfying love that I had never quite felt before.  Honoring the divine masculine and the divine feminine within ourselves is essential for our own fulfillment.

I realized, sixth, that with this inner completion of love through the rising and meeting of the male and female kundalini energies, we no longer “need” a human partner (regardless of outer gender, human partners usually help each of us balance our inner masculine and feminine energies, no matter our orientation), because we embody a fullness of both within ourselves.

Well, what a beautiful sense of completion that suggests, and as the one teaching affirms:  what is needed is always God.  As I received in an earlier teaching, the path to the “all is well” is what is needed in the present moment.   God is the Divine Being in which All Is Well.  In the Divine Being, we are complete.  To God be the honor, always.

Love and Light,

Carol “Anandi”

My new book is out:  Truth and Illusion: The Politics of Spirituality and How One Person’s Lie Is Another One’s Truth

Posted in Inspiration, Interfaith Wisdom, Meditation, New Thought Teachings, Oneness teachings, Self-Realization, Self-Realization Teachings, Spiritual Blog, Spirituality, Transformation, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Palm Sunday Sermon: Whose Triumph Is It, Anyway? #palmsunday #holyweek #jesuschrist #God #peace #grace #sermon

For a change, I got to preach today, and I am so grateful.  I love preaching!!!  And I re-discovered my Jesus, and why he is Christ to me, as the message came to me.  I had no idea that there were really so many political implications to how Jesus rode into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, until I read these scholars’ remarks in the context of our political situation in our nation and our world today.  May Christ inspire you as he inspires me, to speak for peace and non-violence even in the face of evil.

Whose Triumph Is It, Anyway?

Rev. Carol E. Richardson

Hyattstown Christian Church

April 9, 2017


Have you ever ridden a donkey or a burro before?  How did that go?  When I was 17 years-old, my family traveled to Greece for vacation, and part of the time, we stayed on a small, not very tourist-y island.  One Sunday morning, my father and brother and I rode on Mediterranean burros, and I’m guessing what Jesus rode was more like these really small burros, rather than a larger donkey.   To ride these burros, we had to sit sideways, and kick our feet, both on the same side.  It looked really funny; not very glorious, not very dignified.  The one distinctive characteristic of donkeys and burros as far as I can tell is stubbornness, especially when being ridden, and especially when being requested to move forward in a particular direction that they apparently just don’t want to go in.

I don’t know how Jesus did it.  I don’t know how Jesus rode a donkey, and a colt, or with a colt – somehow, I find that part a little confusing, that he rode “them” as the text says, riding them into Jerusalem.  Jesus’ ride into Jerusalem, though humble, was bold, brash, and braying.  Approaching Jerusalem from the east, Jesus rode a donkey down from the Mount of Olives, surrounded by a crowd of mostly peasants.  It was not the rich and powerful, nor the might of the military that greeted and escorted Christ into the powerful city, but a group of peasants who wielded cloaks and branches rather than weapons.  Jesus humbly rode into Jerusalem to serve those who also humbly bowed before the prophet, that is, those who truly bowed before God.

Just like the authentic prophets in Israel before him, Jesus entered as God’s messenger from outside the halls of official earthly power.

By contrast, on the other side of Jerusalem, approaching from the West and riding on a war horse, was the Roman Governor, Pontius Pilate, leading a column of imperial cavalry and soldiers. [1]  According to one source, Pilate was riding from Caesarea Maritima, which sounds as though it was a pretty upscale coastal city, complete with a Roman aqueduct and an amphitheater.  The reason Pilate entered Jerusalem at this time was to keep the Passover crowds under control.

So then, one leader entered Jerusalem for liberation and spiritual sacrifice for the uplifting of all the people, and the other leader entered to maintain his and Roman power for the continued domination and subjugation of the Jewish people.

Biblical scholars John Dominic Crossan and Marcus Borg describe Pontius Pilate’s procession as proclaiming “the power of empire” while “Jesus’ procession proclaimed the power of the kingdom of God,” thereby setting up “the central conflict of the week that led to Jesus’ crucifixion.”[2]

Is this contrast setting us up to understand the nature of Christ’s triumph?

Whose triumph would you have bet on if you had been aware of both processions at that time?  Are we not accustomed to expecting big military powers to be the ones who triumph?

What could the people following and praising Jesus understand of the kind of triumph he would bring?  Didn’t they also want to be liberated from the Romans?  Many of them did.

If Jesus’ followers could move forward 2000 years and if they were on the ground in Syria right now, would a non-violent prophet still look like the answer, or would a military leader seem to be the savior of the day?

What is it that saves us in times of evil?  What is it that saves us from the Roman-like dominations of our day?

Writing in 2010, Biblical scholar John Rollefson suggests that Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan’s part historical and part imaginary visions of the two processions into Jerusalem sets the tone for when the church sings “All Glory, Laud, and Honor,” so that it becomes less like “My country, Tis of thee” or “God Bless America,” and more like one of the church’s songs of “protest and resistance” such as “We Shall Overcome” or “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”[3]

I believe what the Biblical scholars are all saying, in effect, is that Jesus Christ did not enter Jerusalem in order to make Israel great again.  Jesus Christ entered Jerusalem to show forth the greatness of God through his life and death and resurrection.  It was the exquisitely beautiful greatness of God Christ empowered to triumph through Christ’s grace, so that everyone would be saved.

It was the whole world that Christ came to save!  We need to remember that, the next time we see someone’s face on the news, no matter how different they may be from us, and no matter how far away they may live.

Matthew himself, in our gospel reading for today, compares Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem to the entry of the peaceful king in Zechariah 9:9-10 which says the king will “cut off the chariot from Ephraim and the war-horse from Jerusalem.’

What kings and governments do we know that actually shut down the war machines and enter peacefully to rule a nation? What peoples do we know who look for a leader who does not guarantee their safety through military might?

In Isaiah 50, we have a foreshadowing of Christ’s pacifism and non-violent resistance.  “I gave my back to those who struck me, and my cheeks to those who pulled out the beard; I did not hide my face from insult and spitting.”  How many of us would maintain non-violent resistance in that situation?  We know that Martin Luther King, Jr. could not have modeled non-violent resistance if Christ had not already done so.  I have to wonder if even Gandhi could have been the pacifist he was if Christ had not first been so.

The final political allusion in this gospel of Jesus’ triumphal entry is to the Passover Haggadah, celebrated later in the week, as a remembrance of when God saved the Israelites from slavery.  The custom in the Haggadah is to affirm that God saved not only our ancestors, but also us from slavery.

So then, the final Biblical allusion to political power in this text is to God’s ability to overcome the pharaohs of every age, and to set people, including all of us today, free from oppressive governments.  God has the power to overcome all oppression and to set all of us free.

What kind of triumph is this text talking about then, and whose triumph is it, anyway?

Is it political?  After the crucifixion, it certainly did not seem so.  Some people wanted political triumph.  What did Christ want?

It seems that Jesus Christ did not want to make himself the victor.  It seems that Christ did not want political power to wield over other people so that he could get his way, or wealth, or fame, or military might to “destroy the enemy.”

It seems that Jesus did not want to get his way at all.  Jesus showed up humbly, unarmed, surrounded by the lower classes, the politically powerless people of his day.  Some people would call them “worthless.”  I was talking with one of my clients about some of the proposed budget cuts and how thousands of people could go hungry, lose health coverage, and die as a result of potential budget cuts.  The client’s response was that the people were worthless.  By implication, their deaths did not matter.

One of my unspoken thoughts about the client’s opinion was that, obviously, he was not raised a Christian.  Can we listen to Christ and witness Christ and believe that anyone is worthless?

Perhaps the first of Christ’s triumphs on Palm Sunday is that he proclaimed the worth and dignity of all human beings by humbly accepting their praise.  After all, we don’t really care about anyone’s praise unless we see them as worthy enough to value their opinion.  Christ did not care about the worldly status of the crowd – he valued them, and because God values them, that was Christ’s first triumph, valuing those whom God would save.

If we find ourselves seeing anyone as less valuable than anyone else in anyway, we have already failed to share in Christ’s triumph.  It seemingly did not matter to Jesus whether the people who believed in him were homeless or homely or well-off and well-dressed.  He did not care.  His love for others was universal.  That was Christ’s triumph.

Jesus Christ came to Jerusalem for everyone who would receive him, and Christ seeks entry into the temples of our hearts and the fortresses of our minds today, that he might find a triumphal entry in us.

Again, how was his entry into Jerusalem triumphal?  Was it because the people believed in him?  Or was it because Jesus believed in them?

The triumph of Christ’s entry into Jerusalem was the triumph of humility, of compassion, of love, of equality, of justice, and the triumph of grace.  Ultimately, the message of Palm Sunday, when we see it through the lens of Easter, is that love wins.  Grace frees. Compassion unbinds the oppressed.  Humility allows God to triumph over all human evils.

Let me emphasize that again.  It is our humility before God, just like Christ’s humility on the donkey, that allows God to triumph no matter what is happening in life.

When we allow humility to lead us to grace, to compassion, to sharing the fruits of the Spirit, to proclaiming the hope of resurrection in the midst of suffering, then we proclaim God’s triumph in and through the humility and obedience of Christ.

Only by submitting to God’s will and God’s ways of being can we allow God to triumph in our lives just as God triumphed through Christ.  If we submit to God’s rule in and through us, isn’t that the same as allowing the kingdom of God to triumph over the “kingdoms” of the world?

You know, so many spiritual teachers in what some call the “new thought movement,” or the world of popular spirituality outside the walls of the church, so many spiritual teachers present seminars and workshops on attaining success.  After reading about so many of these, I finally realized that, like Christ, it is not my own success that I need to seek in seeing clients and writing books, but rather, it is God’s success that I need to seek in me and through me, or there is no triumph.

In fact, the triumphs of God come not so much in the glorious light of day as in the midnight hours when one more person needs us to hold their hand and to tend to them, whether an aging parent or a sick child.  The triumphs of God come when we feel too tired to go on but we go on anyway.

The triumphs of God show up when we don’t feel like loving someone but we love them, anyway.  The triumphs of Christ in us happen when we remember his forgiveness for us, and his grace despite our inadequacies, and we choose to understand and forgive the imperfections of others.

The triumphs of God in Christ and in and through us occur when we let go of having to have things go our way, and we focus instead on whether or not everyone else is okay and receiving what they truly need in life.

The triumph of God occurred on a donkey, on a cross, and in a tomb.  The triumphs of God in our lives can occur on a bus, or in a classroom, or an office cubicle, or a metro, or a bathroom, or a kitchen, or a farm.

There is no setting too great or too humble for God to triumph; all it takes is a willing heart.  When we decide that we don’t have to triumph, but we long more than anything else for God’s will to triumph in the world, then Christ has indeed triumphantly entered our own hearts.  Nothing else really matters, for whose triumph is it, anyway?  Amen.

Love and Light,

Carol “Anandi”

[1] I am indebted, for this description of the two entrances, to scholar John Rollefson, writing in Feasting on the Word, (Louisville:  Westminster John Knox Press), 2010, Year A, Volume 2, p. 153.

[2] From The Last Week:  What the Gospels Really Teach About Jesus’ Final Days in Jerusalem, as quoted by Rollefson in Feasting on the Word, p. 153.

[3] Ibid., p. 155.

Posted in Sermons, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cultivating Inner Wisdom & Finding Truth #truth #wisdom

The following is a copyrighted excerpt from my upcoming book:

Truth and Illusion:

The Politics of Spirituality

and How One Person’s Lie Is Another One’s Truth

In our quest for truth, we need to cultivate inner wisdom, for how can we find truth without inner wisdom?  And when we find truth, won’t it be wise?  All human beings contribute a perspective on truth, and each of our lives embodies and conveys truths.  In order to hear the truths that all of humanity can contribute to the greater truths of life, we need to cultivate inner wisdom.  In order to develop our inner wisdom, we need to:

  • Become self-aware
  • Accept ourselves
  • Heal our own inner emotional wounds
  • Stop the guilt syndrome by no longer shaming and blaming ourselves and others
  • Listen to our own deep thoughts, values, fears, and feelings with empathy and compassion
  • Listen to the thoughts, values, fears, and feelings of others with empathy and compassion
  • Create a safe space for ourselves emotionally
  • Create a safe space for others emotionally by making no assumptions, no judgments, and no projections
  • Overcome the split between “self” and “other” by understanding that we are all part of the universe, therefore we all contribute to a universal truth which encompasses all of us
  • Develop non-attachment and practice acceptance
  • Honor ourselves and every human being as an equally valuable person on this earth, simply because we breathe, think, feel, and exist. In honoring ourselves and others just for existing, we honor Life, of which we are all part.

If we can do all these things, we will be on our way to cultivating inner wisdom.  One sign that we have found inner wisdom is that we will tend to feel a greater sense of peace and contentment in life.  Feeling peaceful and contented conveys an inner wisdom that is open to discovering greater and greater truths, and indeed, has already found them!

Love and Light,

Carol “Anandi”

Highest Harmony Healing & Coaching, including distance healing and coaching, around the world

“Mornings with the Masters: Mystical Journeys in a Postmodern World” on amazon.com

Posted in emotional healing, Inspiration, Interfaith Wisdom, New Thought Teachings, Oneness teachings, Politics & spirituality, Spiritual teachings, Spirituality, Truth vs Illusion, Uncategorized, Wisdom | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment