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Publication: Spritual Healing
The Eternal Declaration

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Spiritual Awakenings with Dawn Silver

May 2, 2006

Happy Birthday to the Taureans and hello,

The eclipses are laying off of us for now and life is getting back to normal (define normal?). Chicago has had the most amazing weather and I hope it has been nice wherever you live.

Before going to our guest author and leader, I have a few announcements to make. First, there are two retreats I will be teaching on: the first is on the Sea Angels Psychic Cruise at the end of October. This will be my fourth time teaching on this cruise which will hit ports in Jamaica, Haiti, Cozumel and Grand Cayman. It is a perfect opportunity to get certified in a number of disciplines (I teach astrology and Jewels of the Lotus Crystal Healing) and have a fun time with like-minded beings for an amazing 8 days. Just go to Sea Angels Psychic Cruise for all the info (and please tell them I sent you).

The next retreat will be 12 days in Peru with Shamans, Healers and professional guides as we expound upon the insights from the Celestine Prophecy. I will be leading crystal healing on Machu Picchu. Vera Lopez has been leading tours to Peru for 15 years, focusing on spiritual questing. To get an idea of the itinerary go to www.spiritsoftheearth.com. Our trip is planned to start the last week of April 2007. It will be incredible.

Today I am pleased to have our guest lecturer Andrew Cohen dong an article for Spiritual Awakening. Andrew Cohen is an American spiritual teacher and visionary thinker widely recognized for his original contribution to the emerging field of evolutionary spirituality. Through his talks, retreats, publications, and ongoing dialogues with the leading philosophers, mystics, and activists of our time, he is becoming a defining voice in an international alliance of individuals and organizations who are committed to the transformation of human consciousness and culture.

As an author, Cohen has expressed his teachings in a number of books, including My Master Is My Self (1989), Enlightenment Is a Secret (1991), and Embracing Heaven & Earth (2000). His most recent publication, Living Enlightenment: A Call for Evolution Beyond Ego (2002), was praised by cosmologist Brian Swimme for its "simple, searing wisdom connecting religious ideas about enlightenment with the scientific understanding of an evolutionary cosmos." Cohen is currently writing a new book on Evolutionary Enlightenment to be released in 2006. If you live in Chicago please pick it up at Transitions BookPlace at 1000 W. North Ave. My friends there would welcome your business and are feeling the crunch of the times we live in. You can also order from them online.

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Below are specifics of the events in May with Andrew. There is a number to call to register (24hours, 7days) and if people mention "Save Healing Earth", Andrew will donate $25 per day-intensive and $5 per evening talk registration to the Save Healing Earth Campaign. I would like to say thank you to him for his generosity in supporting Chicago's spiritual community.

Andrew Cohen speaks on Evolutionary Enlightenment:
Embracing Life’s Greater Purpose

Evening Talk--Friday, May 5, 8pm Cost $20

One-Day Intensive--Saturday, May 6, 10:30am to 6pm Cost $125, $110 pre-registration

Fender Ballroom, Second Floor
Hard Rock Hotel Chicago
230 North Michigan Avenue

Pre-register by phone: 847-680-2755 (24hours, 7days)

For more information: http://www.andrewcohen.org/schedule or email info.chicago@EnlightenNext.org Be sure to mention "Save Healing Earth".

"For me Amma is the ideal. She is the yardstick. She is the measurement to which all of us [must hold ourselves], whether we are beginners on the spiritual path or matured seekers. She always shows that you can give more love, show more compassion. Amma is the greatest living saint on this planet. I met many Masters, but in Amma I see a combination of unconditional love and ferocious determination and an indomitable spirit. Her example is peerless." - Andrew Cohen

And here is some more wisdom from Andrew:

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The Eternal Declaration

In the premodern era, especially in the east, it was believed that history moved in continuously recurring cycles. This idea is similar to what it would be like to be on a merry-go-round that turned round and round, eternally repeating the same process. For one who “awakened” in that context, the definition of salvation was obvious: to get off the merry-go-round of an endlessly repeating process in order to rest in the blissful peace and eternal freedom of nirvana—the formless unmanifest realm beyond time and space.

A bodhisattva is an enlightened being who compassionately refrains from entering nirvana until every other sentient being has been released from the endlessly repeating cycle of time. Traditionally, the bodhisattva declares, “I vow to liberate all sentient beings before myself. I refuse to enter into nirvana until all other sentient beings have entered before me.” The bodhisattva is a heroic figure because, for everyone else's sake, he or she is willing to remain in the world of time and space, in the manifest realm, for eternity.

At the beginning of the twenty-first century, however, we know that history does not move in cycles but is a linear developmental process that began fourteen billion years ago with a burst of heat, light, and energy that, over time, gave rise to matter, then to life, and finally to our unique human capacity for self-reflective consciousness. And it is only in our highly developed capacity for consciousness that the very impulse that created us miraculously gains the means to know itself. Indeed, the process that began with a bang so long ago has just begun to awaken to itself through us. This is why the universe needs us to be here! In that light, the very definition of the bodhisattva vow needs to be updated so that it is in alignment with this emerging cosmic perspective. The universe needs enlightened souls more than ever because the future literally depends upon those sentient beings who are awakening to the evolutionary process as themselves.

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Even the idea or concept of enlightenment—or nonduality—should be redefined. Spiritually, it just no longer makes sense that the ultimate goal of enlightenment is merely a release from the world process. Nor does it even make sense that enlightenment, as more evolved definitions tell us, means becoming one with the world and one with that formless unmanifest dimension that lies beyond it. Why? Because a new definition of enlightenment must express the dawning revelation that our conscious participation in the creation of the future has become essential to the unfolding of the cosmos—the shocking recognition that from now on, it really is up to us.

In the postmodern era, the mythical God has fallen out of the sky. And the yearning for heaven, nirvana, or final release is being replaced by a call from the Self to the awakening human for an unconditional willingness to be here, to help shepherd the universe into a glorious future. Enlightenment has always pointed toward a state of consciousness beyond ego. And true postmodern bodhisattvas are those shepherd-warriors who courageously die to themselves so that they will be able to bear the enormous burden of facing directly into the infinite future for us all. Who would dare to embrace a future without end for the sake of the universe itself? Who has the courage to imagine what it would be like to vow to live forever? Not my will, but thy will be done. I vow to live forever, to return again and again and again.

Thanks, Andrew. See you Friday.

"Til next time, all my heartfelt love and devotion,

Dawn Silver

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