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Everyone has a story. I share mine, not to persuade you of a creed, but simply to let you in and help you see where I’m coming from, what shaped me and led me to this point.
If my choice of words, experiences and beliefs differ from yours, please bear with me. My goal is not sacred hegemony, but to give you an example of the power of love that returns us to our true self where dreams are fulfilled every day.
My story begins with an experience in my childhood when a teacher belittled my ability to read in front of the entire class. The shame and humiliation I felt, led me to believe that I wasn’t as bright as the other students. Long after I had forgotten the incident, the self-judgment that I wasn’t smart enough, lived on inside my subconscious and shaped my actions and behaviors.
As an adult, fear and insecurities had become so entrenched in my unconscious mind that it now was affecting my dreams in life. Although I was not consciously aware of it, I sought to disprove my inner voice that would every so often resurface in nagging doubt. I had big dreams, but my unconscious mind would often find a way to disqualify me from achieving that dream.
Even the kinds of dreams I had for my life were not really mine. I looked for approval and acceptance from family, friend, and what I thought was God. So my pursuits, at least unconsciously, were often rooted in fear of rejection by those whose love I sought.
Later, when I began to have success in achieving my dreams, I would at times feel like a fraud, not because I had done anything wrong, but because I didn’t quite feel deserving. There were times when I found myself speaking to crowds of tens of thousands, then while walking away, I was faced with all kinds of self-doubt, looking for assurance that I had done well. When people would praise me, I would question whether they were genuine, or were simply pandering me to look for some kind of personal favor. It’s seems weird now, but at the time, my mind naturally seemed to incline toward questioning whether I was enough.
The Day That Changed It All
In 2005, I began to have severe cluster headaches to the point where I felt like someone was sticking a knife in my eye. No matter what I did, including seeking help from doctors and pleading with God to take the pain away, the pain only increased. Even prescribed strong pain killers could not alleviate the pain. I felt hopeless and ready to give up. My religious upbringing made me think that it was God’s punishment in my life, because inside I felt like a failure who had disappointed God.
Then one day in 2006, I had a deep inner unexplainable prompting to close my eyes and meditate on divine love. It was outside my comfort zone. But there in my car, I closed my eyes and relived with my imagination, Mel Gibson’s movie, The Passion of the Christ. The story of Christ’s death communicated the profundity of unselfish, sacrificial and unconditional love.
Suddenly my imagination turned intimate, and for a moment I felt like I was there…immediately…in the presence of Christ while he carried his cross.
Indescribable love rushed over me.
Within mere moments, the pain subsided. Since then, I have never had another attack of cluster headaches.
Entering A New Consciousness Based on Love
Following this dramatic turn of events in my life, my eyes opened to the power of love unlike I had seen before. I found this recurring message of love that transcends all else in many ancient sacred texts.
I found, for instance, in the Bible, a compilation of sixty-six ancient books, a message that my religious background had before never really made clear. The Bible was so not so much a history book, although there’s much history in there. It was really not a theological discourse with rules to obey, even though I found many rules in there.
It was a story about humanity’s quest to understand the purpose of life by interacting with what they perceived to be God, culminating in the revelation of divine love through this mystical human but yet divine figure named Jesus.
The story of the Bible begins with two people in paradise choosing to live by a value system based on adjudicating good from evil. Their choices made them judgmental of themselves and others; their good versus evil binary system caused them to succumb to insecurity and fear. They became disconnected from divine love and enmeshed in selfishness, pride, and fear. They fell from a paradise of love into a hell of separation from each other, their true inner selves, and ultimately from divine love.
The story was metaphorical and mystical, because it was more than a story about two people in the beginning of time. It was a story about what happens in the deep areas of our hearts. Insecurity and fear at some point invades our inner person, through judgment of self and others. We become distant and separated from the core essence of our being, and from that love that made us innocently enter the dance of life naked without inhibition, fear, and shame.
As the ancient spiritual text continues to unfold, we find how people sought to understand their relationship with whom they believed to be God. They created religious systems and laws, made sacrifices to dull their guilty consciences, and pitted self against others to gain some form of moral superiority. They attempted to quiet the nagging doubt of the false self, the critical voice within that shouted, “I am not enough.”
Life became a meaningless fight for survival until love took on human form in the person of Jesus, who demonstrated the self-giving and loving nature of the divine. He awakened humanity to pure love that had been dead inside them. Like the tale of Sleeping Beauty, humans were in living in an alternate state, unaware, distant and separated from their true selves—created to be loved and to love. It took a divine Prince to awaken them to their original design.
With a new understanding of this sacred and revered ancient spiritual text, my life changed. I saw God, Father, Universe, Spirit, Higher Power, Supreme Being, or whatever name you prefer to use to describe that which transcends all, through a new lens – love. I began to meditate on this pure love every day.
I noticed that for love to not be vague or abstract in me, I had to incorporate what happened on that historic day 2000 years ago in my meditation. So I kept directing my emotions and my imagination in meditation on that pure love in Jesus until I entered a new consciousness.
My health suddenly improved drastically. Old crippling attitudes disappeared. Insecurities and fear began to fade. Opportunities effortlessly came my way. Success followed without all its normal pitfalls. I found paradise in me. New dreams emerged from within that would benefit others and make the world a better place.
So that’s my story – my track to embrace a consciousness based on love. It is forever embedded into my journey of life.
Your life, path, story is different. But it is as valid as mine. Whatever your journey of life has been is important, significant and uniquely yours. Although we may or may not share the same beliefs and values, we share our common humanity that deep within cries out for unconditional love. Intuitively we know that the greatest of all is love. That love has the ability to transform us from the inside out.
David Youngren is an international speaker and the founder of Juma’s World (a charity working with children in Tanzania.) His latest book, Awakening To I Am Love: How Finding Your True self Transforms Your Wellbeing, Relationships, and What You Do was published in November 2019.