I wish you a New Year filled with great growth, wonder, and the appreciation for the beauty in all things.

I do believe that this will be a year of deep inner growth for all of us.

As many proverbs have said over time constant change is part of life. It does seem that changes are coming faster and our ability to adapt to change needs to be swift.

Part of adapting to change means being open to unlimited possibilities. We must continue to look at our limiting beliefs and also to be willing to change our way of thinking over time.

I am always looking for page turning novels for when I am on long airplane flights. One of my favorite writers is Michael Crichton. He is a brilliant man, an incredible writer, and he uses his fame to spread important political and environmental messages.

For a recent trip I picked up his new novel A State of Fear. I thought the story was going to be a thriller about global warming. It is a thriller about global warming, but with a twist. He researched his statements, used footnotes, and includes an extensive bibliography.

The bottom line that he communicates is yes we are seeing climate changes. But the actual proof for whether or not these changes are due to global warming is in question. He shows the problems in research that occurs when political and environmental groups have an agenda and how we can easily be misled.

He does not say that climate changes are or are not due to global warming. He just raises interesting questions about the research on this subject.

The reason I am bringing this up is my mind had already attached the label of global warming for the changes we are now seeing on the planet. In reading this book I found myself having to rethink my putting the world situation in “a box” and to look at how vulnerable I am to the media.

I had to stretch my mental constructs and I feel this is really healthy for the times we live in. I had to remind myself that the work I have been sharing with Medicine for the Earth goes beyond all labels.

We need to continue to look at how our outer environment is a reflection of our inner states of consciousness. We need to move deeply into a state of honor for nature and all of life. And we need to remember that everything is connected to a web of life and that all my thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs effects the web. There is no separation only connection and unity.

I remembered once again that I need to go beyond labels and just do my work. My work is being not doing. Yes, I have a responsibility to take action in the world that reflects a state of consciousness that embraces oneness, light, and love. But if I have not become those states my actions have a limited effect on the web of life.

With our work we are trying to balance out the masculine and feminine energies. In working with the feminine we create change through being.

It is so easy to get lost in the illusions created by the outer world. The only way to move though these illusions is to go within and sit in your inner truth. This means taking some time “to stop the world” and go within.

During this month take some time “to be” instead of “to do”. Allow yourself to drop into a deep state that truly effects the entire web of life.

To start just take a few minutes a day. Find a quiet place to sit. Begin by taking some deep breaths into your heart allowing yourself to connect with your own heart and inner being. Visualize and experience yourself cutting your ties with the outer world for a brief time. Experience yourself actually cutting all cords that tie you to the world and others.

Keep breathing and experience yourself going within. It is okay to stop the world and take a brief time out. After a few minutes you should start to feel your center.

Continue to do this everyday and notice how you start to experience your own inner wisdom coming through as well as experiencing your own inner light shining through you.

The outer world will always present traps that create illusions that imprison us as well as mislead us from the truth. It is only through going within and tapping into your own intuition, your own inner knowing that will lead you on the path of truth.

As we begin a new year let’s remember the work that is so important for all of us to be doing that contributes to the state of being which truly nurtures the web of life.

It is crucial that we keep up our personal work of looking at the energy we are sending out into the world. We want to make sure that the energy behind our thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes are transmuted to an energy of love and light. You must keep asking the question, “What energy did I just send?” “Who did I send that energy to?”

We must continue to do our work to raise consciousness so that we are truly weaving a web of light within and throughout the earth. This work takes raising our awareness in our moment to moment way of living.

It is important that we continue to watch what we are projecting onto others and the world as I described in the December Transmutation News. We want to project divine perfection onto all of life.

And this month I would like us to focus our attention on creating strong local communities so that we have the support needed to thrive in the coming times.

In 2005 many challenges occurred on a large scale all over the world. I have different Teacher Trainings and I am on the yahoo groups for the different circles I am leading. And this discussion of how local communities are supporting each other has become part of our communications together.

In the United States we had Hurricane Katrina that impacted New Orleans. We had Hurricane Ivan and Hurricane Wilma impacting Florida.

The effect of Hurricane Katrina on New Orleans and Hurricane Wilma on Florida are long lasting. And one of the lessons learned is that the US government will not be there to help with such natural occurrences.

In speaking to students and friends who live in New Orleans and Florida it is real clear that local communities coming together to support each other and also rebuild replaced any support from government organizations.

Out of the discussion of local community support a student of mine in Florida who is also a brilliant teacher and practitioner shared the following story. She shared a story that came from Dr. Sorah Dibitsky and it is a bit similar to the story I shared last year about the woman from Cambodia.

Here is the story as told by Dr. Sorah Dibitsky who is the author of A Chorus to Wisdom: Notes on Spiritual Living. Her website is www.drsorah.com

South Florida was hit with a great cleanser in the form of Wilma. Wilma taught my husband and I that Love is the most important thing in the whole universe. Keeping Love in awareness became a moment by moment conscious focus. I’m sure many of us experienced many frightening moments during the storm.

Right after the storm, one of my friends phoned and said that she had an odyssey. Since speaking with her, I’ve heard many odyssey stories. An odyssey is a perilous journey. I’m sure we all have perilous tales we could tell about the past week. But, I’m sure, too, there are also many miracles we could share. There were times during the “week-without-power” we just had, that I thought I was reliving the Maccabee saga: our resources lasted longer than we expected. Our propane stove worked fine for five days without running out of propane; so did our propane lantern. Our fridge stayed cold for almost four days; our radio ran constantly on the original set of batteries. Our candles lasted, as did our flashlight batteries. And more miracles: we met our neighbors who were really, really, really, really, really helpful.

A Course in Miracles says “God is but love, and so am I!” I watched love in action this past week as I kept allowing Love to come through me and to fill me and to heal the fear.

While I was at my Teacher Training in Switzerland there were other stories about the need for local communities to stand strong together. Right now there is a need to speak about the incredible injustice towards refugees in German speaking Europe.

One student in Austria was telling stories about the mistreatment towards people of African descent in Austria and the need to bring public awareness to this.

During my workshop one student had a phone call from her husband about a terrible event with her neighbors. The police broke down the door in the middle of the night. The husband was separated from his wife and children and their cell phones were taken away from each other so they could not be in contact.

After a few days the media did find out about this and came to do a story. The government is looking into this but no decision had been made at the time of this writing.

My group and their own local community have sent a tremendous amount of support to this family. The father has said that his family throughout their entire life has never felt as much support and compassion as in this present moment. It gives them hope and strength in this very difficult time.

The story of this family is one of many. There is too little publicity, support, and justice in these matters. And it will be up to local communities to change the injustice that is occurring.

My student who is grateful to the support of our circle shared the following Advent’s tale that comes from an old storybook.

The Four Candles

The four candles were shining their light on the wreath. There was silence. It was so silent you could hear the candles speak.

The first candle sighed and said: My name is PEACE. My light shines, but mankind does not have peace, they do not want me. The candle’s light got weaker and weaker and finally faded away.

The second candle was flickering and said: My name is FAITH. Yet I am superfluous. People do not want to know about God. There is no reason for me to burn on. A rush of air went through the room and extinguished the candle.

Very quietly and full of sorrow the third candle started speaking: My name is LOVE. I have no more power to burn on. People put me aside. They focus on themselves and have no more compassion for all beings on earth. Also this candle died.

A child came into the room. Seeing the four candles it cried out: You should burn and shine your light into the world! It almost started weeping. Then the fourth candle raised its voice: Don’t be afraid. As long as I burn, we can light all the other candles again. My name is HOPE.

The child took the candle and lit all the others as well.

This month find a way to create a gathering with some of your neighbors. Get to know them. We don’t have to come together in community only in tragedy. Learn about your neighbors. They are people who also want to thrive just like you. This begins a process of creating loving and supportive communities. And this process brings change itself.

Find the vocabulary that you can use within your local community to share with them creating a human web of light. You can click on Creating A Human Web of Light on this site to see the words I used and change them in ways that can touch the heart of each person.

This is a way to further the work I have written about before. I have shared with you that I strongly believe that generations in the future will read stories of how communities of people gathered together to change the world.

A few months ago I wrote about a wonderful book I had read titled The Flight of the Goose. This book was written by Lesley Thomas and is published by Far Eastern Press (www.fareasternpress.com).

This book is beautifully written and I really loved it. An Inupiaq elder who grew up on the Bering Strait reviewed the book. I am sharing this review with you as I feel this elder has some potent words to share that go beyond the book.

Review of Flight of the Goose by Lesley Thomas
— Fred Bigjim, Alaskan Inupiaq author

Flight of the Goose: A Story of the Far North is a novel about loss and loneliness, alienation and fear, acceptance and forgiveness, natural and supernatural. Lesley Thomas has carefully crafted a complex story set in Alaska at a time of rapid change, competing economic and social interests, and national crisis.

Her characters seem drawn from life. Both they and the circumstances in which they find themselves are believable, memorable, tragic, and hopeful. Although the novel is set in a time and place where inevitable conflicts must arise from clashes of cultures, communities, and beliefs, and from change itself, the real depth of Thomas’ work derives from the way she examines conflicts within individuals themselves. To an even greater extent, she illuminates how we are all responsible, through our own choices and actions, for much of the tragedy and alienation that afflicts all of us, regardless of our culture, country, or religion.

One of the most interesting and thought-provoking aspects of Flight of the Goose is the portrayal of the clash of beliefs in the Arctic. We see there is little basis in the common idea that Christianity is a “white man’s” religion, for none of the non-Native characters in the novel are practicing, nor even nominal, Christians. Instead, to find meaning in their lives, the bird man places his faith in scientific rationalism, the teachers in education and humanism, and the hunters in hedonism. Among the Native peoples, too, there are clashes of belief. Some families are Christian, some are not. Even those in the novel who are drawn to shamanism demonstrate an understanding of Jesus that is richer than that shown by any of the non-Native characters. We begin to realize that the real conflicts arise from individual choices related to exploitation, greed, selfishness, misunderstandings of others — all of which have less to do with the precepts of any particular religion than with true practice of the precepts of these. Either way, we learn how dangerous it can be to delve into the supernatural carelessly, without understanding and preparation.

To a great extent, we watch tragedy unfold before us, brought about less by a clash of “great religions” than by refusal by all individuals involved to practice the moral precepts, common to these, to do good to one another. Instead, we find rejection of others, in both Native and non-Native settings, and as a result, alienation, confusion, and misunderstandings on multiple levels.These lead ultimately to loss of innocence, loss of culture, loss of family, loss of belief, loss of land, loss of life.

Yet, we are not left hopeless. Tragedy has not meant total destruction. This is also a novel about triumph over despair; maturity gained through pain; forgiveness, reconciliation, and restoration made possible through acts of the will.

Flight of the Goose is a remarkable achievement. Its memorable characters, believable setting, and complex treatment of problems that face us all in a world of unavoidable change and contact, will haunt the reader long after the covers have been closed.

I ask that we join together in deep appreciation and thanks for Bob Edgar, the webmaster of this site and to all who volunteer their time to translate the Transmutation News.

The Transmutation News is now in German, Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese, Slovakian, and Dutch. All who do the translation do it out of love for the work and receive no compensation for their time. We do pray that they all receive compensation on many other levels.

And we give thanks to Eva Ruprechtsberger who has created a web and links to read the Transmutation News in other languages.

The full moon is January 14. Let’s strengthen our focus on gathering together as a world community to weave a web of light that goes within and around the earth. And let’s bring light to the entire web of life.

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