By David Spangler
Editor's Note: This blog post is an excerpt from the upcoming issue of David's quarterly journal Views from the Borderland.
There is no question that we are living through a challenging time in our history. Climate change alone would be a major danger to deal with, one demanding our full attention and response, but there are so many other problems confronting us as well. I don’t need to enumerate them; simply watching the evening news for a week shows us a world struggling to find balance, struggling to change, or just plain struggling.
What I want to explore in this issue is how we can navigate this time in partnership with the subtle worlds. More precisely, I want to share how I navigate it personally, given the worldview I’ve been sharing these past seven years in this journal. Of course, our individual situations, capabilities, and connections in life are unique, and we each need to discover what works for us. My approach may not work for you. But like cooks sharing recipes and cooking tips in the kitchen, it can be helpful when one person shares his or her “tricks of the trade” with others.
To be clear, this issue is not about subtle activism per se. We’ve talked about that in past journals. It is certainly a related topic, and you can find more information on it in my book, Working with Subtle Energies. Lorian also has classes on that subject.
What I have in mind here is something both more personal and more universal, not focused upon any specific event, need, or opportunity in the world. The question underlying this issue of Views springs from letters I received this summer asking me generally how a person could make a difference, or more simply, cope with what is happening in the world.
Although these letters were inspired by specific events happening in the world over the past few months, the question their writers asked is one I am often asked, usually by people feeling both overwhelmed by the seeming immensity of the problems facing us and, at the same time, called to be of service. It’s a question I face in my own life, and it’s one that I’ve put to my subtle colleagues as well from time to time.
In this issue of Views, I’d I want to begin, though, with a few thoughts about Incarnational Spirituality.
The development of Incarnational Spirituality is something to which I’ve devoted my entire life. As those who have read my memoir, Apprenticed to Spirit, or have followed my work over the years, know, Incarnational Spirituality is the externalization of a project within the subtle worlds. The primary purpose of this project is to liberate people from thought-forms of limitation and separation based on being in embodiment and to empower them to recognize, celebrate, and use sacred resources that are inherent within them as incarnate individuals. As such, its unfoldment and manifestation in the world are the product of many minds and hearts both here and in the subtle realms, not all of which are identified with Lorian or with Incarnational Spirituality as I present it. It is at heart a proclamation of a human heritage and identity, something that belongs to everyone.
Lorian already offers a plethora of books and classes, with more on the way, on our approach to Incarnational Spirituality, so I’m not going to go into details about it here; it’s also been the subject of previous issues of this journal. But there are three ideas I want to share as they provide a context both for the comments of my subtle colleagues and for my own insights and perspective.
The first is that incarnation—the act of a soul taking on physical embodiment—is fundamentally a sacred act. That is, the principles and powers that enable it to happen are the same as brought the universe itself into being, stemming ultimately from an act of love and will. This makes each person a manifestation of sacredness whatever the expression or outcome of their life may be. Each of us matters! Each of us is valuable.
The second idea is that we come into life with a toolbox of subtle and spiritual resources. Love and Sovereignty—our ability to choose and to express agency—form the key that opens this toolbox.
The third principle is that the world we incarnate into and therefore inhabit exists in both physical and subtle dimensions; consequently, our incarnation embraces both these dimensions as well. There is no such thing as a purely physical incarnation. All incarnation is “bi-dimensional,” a taking on of an integrated system that is a combination of both a physical and a subtle body. By forgetting or denying this, we operate as partial people, stumbling in the dark even as we think we are seeing where we’re going. Learning to engage with subtle energies and the subtle environments around us isn’t an excursion into an other world; it is a reclamation of our other half.
The fullness of incarnation is to embrace all aspects of our presence on Earth, not just those of our physical and psychological natures, as long as we do so with integration and balance.
Curious about more of David's perspective on the subtle worlds? Click here for more information and to subscribe to Views from the Borderland.