What happens when a forty-five-year old therapist goes to acting school with a group of young actors?
While testing her theory that the arts are the pathway to higher consciousness and a spiritual worldview, the author encounters unexpected drama. Art and life blur as she faces daily conflicts, a brush with death, life-altering neurological changes, and a classmate's suicide. Through acting, she gains powerful insights about artistic endeavor and heightened consciousness; above all, she realizes that shifting the worldview requires following Gandhi's wisdom: "Be the change that you want to see in the world."
Throughout her adventures, Dr. Duanita shows the reader how to co-create reality, enhance creativity, and deepen their spiritual connection. So powerful is the intention of her true story that few who read it will fail to experience a transformation of mind, heart, and spirit.
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Be the ChangeActing with Intention
By Duanita G. Eleniak
BALBOA PRESSCopyright © 2012 Duanita G. Eleniak, PhD
All right reserved.
Chapter OneConsciousness, Spirit, and the Arts
What Is Consciousness?
In a 1988 public television interview of the mythologist and author Joseph Campbell, Bill Moyers posed the question, "What is consciousness?" In response, Campbell spoke of the orchid growing up the tree by his lanai and described consciousness as the plant's "knowing" of where to grow and how to turn to the light.
Others, such as the psychiatrist Dr. David Hawkins, define consciousness as awareness—that part of us that takes in all of the subjective phenomena of life. In this awareness, I would discover, there is limitless potential.
The enlightened throughout history, authors of the modern physics, and other researchers have agreed that consciousness is both beyond form and, indeed, is the omnipotent matrix out of which form arises. Consciousness is the formless, invisible, infinite field of energy that is at once independent of time, space, or location yet is all-inclusive and ever present. In other words, through consciousness, potential moves from formless to form, from non-experienced to experienced. As Hawkins puts it, consciousness is a unified field "within which are variable levels of vibrational frequencies that appear as the observable universe."
One of the main difficulties of asking questions about consciousness is that the questions we raise, and therefore the answers we get, will be defined, and limited, by our own particular levels of consciousness. While this difficulty is unavoidable, it does not stop us from enlarging our understanding of the various levels, even though we might have yet to attain them. In 1995, Hawkins published a Map of Consciousness, the result of exhaustive investigation in which he applied research from the field of kinesiology to the study of consciousness. This map is a calibrated scale of the relative power of levels of awareness in all areas of human experience. It is a valuable tool that provides a way to measure changes in consciousness, or shifts in the vibrational frequency range.
Shifts in Consciousness
Hawkins's Map of Consciousness reveals that there are many levels of awareness available for humans to experience. The level of consciousness attained is aligned with each person's concept of self. The more limited the sense of self, the more constricted are the boundaries of experiencing, and the lower the calibration at that level of awareness. Rather than focusing solely on one's own consciousness, the goal, as Hawkins explains it, is to identify with consciousness itself and thus to know that one's actual self is unlimited. This is the point at which we become "enlightened."
The characteristics of "pure" enlightened consciousness—as opposed to consciousness limited by our concepts of self—have been observed throughout human history. Such characteristics include a perception of timelessness, of being beyond form and time yet equally present everywhere. Enlightenment is a state where there is "oneness" with no recognition of separation—where, in place of ordinary thoughts and feelings, the individual often experiences a sense of infinite power, compassion, gentleness, and love. The historical literature of various spiritual disciplines reveals a variety of ways to shift and expand consciousness. The common denominator among these is an emphasis on eliminating the concept of self as a finite phenomenon.
Along with a rich repository of knowledge, practices, and techniques leading to pure consciousness, history has provided us with many blissful accounts of enlightenment—there is no doubt that shifts in consciousness can, and do, happen. Why, then, is the state of consciousness called enlightenment still relatively rare? The evidence is that, in modern society especially, few people take an active interest in becoming enlightened. If asked on the street, how many would claim such an achievement as their greatest ambition?
In the overall evolution of consciousness, only a very few people have chosen to commit to shifting their levels of consciousness in an expansive direction—even though it is possible. On average, a person advances little more than five points during a lifetime. In his 2005 book, Truth vs. Falsehood, Hawkins observed that human collective consciousness has also evolved very slowly:
It did not reach level 90 until the time of the birth of the Buddha at approximately 563 B.C ... by the time of the birth of Jesus Christ, the consciousness level of the totality of mankind had reached 100 ... It took approximately 2000 years ... to move from 100 to the level of 205 in the late 1980s.
The rise of human consciousness to a level above 200 is especially significant, because 200 marks the capacity to distinguish truth from falsehood. Level 200 is the threshold of empowerment, the beginning of a willingness to stop blaming and to accept responsibility for one's own actions, feelings, and beliefs. In other words, it was only in the late 1980s that collective consciousness reached a level associated with basic integrity, transitioning away from self-servingness to the more benign levels of caring for others. (See Hawkins' scale of consciousness in Power versus Force, 2002).
By November 2003, at the time of a spiritual event known as the Harmonic Concordance, the calibrated level of human consciousness had risen to an unprecedented 207. A factor in the relatively quick shift in collective awareness between the late 1980s and 2003 could have been the scientific community's increased interest in the study of consciousness—an interest that led to the new concept of a "science of wholeness," which captured the attention of physicists, astronomers, mathematicians, brain surgeons, and neurologists. The new science began to be mainstreamed into popular culture in the late 1980s, giving large numbers of people an expanded context and language in which to understand—and accept—knowledge about consciousness that was already well documented in spiritual literature. Before this, the slowness of humankind's shifts in consciousness may well have been due to a condition called paradigm blindness—an inability to see a particular reality until there develops a context and language for naming that reality.
The Consciousness of Worldviews
We are living in a unique time in history. The recent shift in humankind's general level of consciousness, the new science, and popular culture in the form of books, magazine articles, and films like What the Bleep Do We Know!? (2004) and What the Bleep!?—Down the Rabbit Hole (2006) have brought us to the brink of great change. Although a new worldview has yet to gain acceptance on a wide scale, people are now questioning the dominant paradigm or current worldview.
In a lecture delivered at the 2002 Prophets Conference in Florida, the late eminent psychiatrist Dr. John Mack defined "worldview" as what we see in "reality." It is what we think is so—how we structure reality. The purpose of a worldview is to provide us with a compass for living, a way to solve problems. The worldview, or paradigm, that any individual or collective might hold coincides with the level of consciousness attained by that individual or collective.
The current dominant Western worldview can be characterized as scientific materialism, the principal focus of which is on the material world. This perspective arose in the Middle Ages out of a sense of helplessness in the face of disease, war, and death; it was an attempt to understand and gain some control over the physical world and to learn its secrets. In the Middle Ages, this paradigm was still within a context of an ensouled world, but over the course of the last couple of centuries, science has arguably replaced soul or faith. The literal-mindedness of scientific materialism does not know what to do with the inner world, subjectivity, concepts of the Divine, ambiguity, paradox, uncertainty, and mystery. The distinguishing characteristic of this paradigm is reason, which emphasizes what is "logical" and "provable."
Inherent in this consciousness is a limitation at the calibrated level of 400. While this is the level of many great thinkers of history, such as Einstein and Freud, the problem with a worldview of reason is that its uppermost boundaries of consciousness end where the spiritual begins. Reason, in other words, does not accommodate the entirety of truth and is thus a block to reaching higher levels of consciousness. Limited as we are by the perspective of scientific materialism, it is relatively uncommon for people in our society to transcend this level of consciousness.
There are, however, indications of the decline of scientific materialism as the dominant worldview. Many anomalies cannot always be explained with science—for example, crop circles, UFO abduction encounters, near-death experiences, and new data about consciousness. This suggests the need for a different way of knowing that would encompass our values, our connection to the Divine, our sense of the Sacred, the world of reflection, deep truths, and our spirit. Because scientific materialism has become a faith in and of itself, with no connection to the Divine, we have been left empty. To fill the void, more and more people have sought out experiences of "non-ordinary" states of consciousness—through, for example, the use of psychedelics, meditation, and holotropic breathwork. People's increasing openness to the Divine, and to mysticism as a legitimate way of knowing, is a major sign of transition to a new worldview with its corresponding shift in consciousness.
By the time of the 2002 Florida Prophets Conference, Dr. Mack had devoted his life to shifting the worldview of scientific materialism. He provided passionate reasons to do so, and his words went to the heart of some of our most deeply felt contemporary concerns. When we live only in and for material reality, we only enjoy what we can take from that reality, and "the world becomes little more than real estate." From a consciousness so limited come "wars, environmental desecration, and animals being treated as 'products' rather than entities/spirits." Technology, Mack added, was not the solution but part of the problem: "As we slip into 'technological autism' we can no longer hear the cries of the animals or see the misery of human beings. It is this obvious destructiveness that points to the need for a profound shift in worldview."
But how exactly does this shift begin? Mack and other researchers agree that what must happen is a change in our attitude of mind—to an understanding that takes us beyond the physical world, enabling us to accept that consciousness is real. Such a shift in worldview would respect mystery; the Eternal; the Cosmos of Abundance; and the oneness of physical, metaphoric, and mythic reality. It would open up a new world of possibilities—among them that an inherent intelligence is at work in our Universe, and that there may be universes with different physical laws. As Mack expressed it, a shift in worldview "changes the sense of who we are, of what it means to be a human being. There is more of a sense of connectedness with everything, the joyous and the painful ... We become the instruments of creation unfolding ... which is joyous and also awesome."
In terms of Hawkins' Map of Consciousness, such a shift in paradigm would calibrate at energy levels of 500 and over, exactly the point at which awareness expands not just in power but in quality. Inherent at these levels of consciousness are love, joy, peace, and enlightenment. At the levels where consciousness vibrates at a higher frequency than reason, love is the great motivator. The corresponding worldview would encompass and nurture altruism, compassion, dedication to principles, inspirational leadership, and creative expression. Above all, the new worldview would incorporate Spirit and an understanding of the consciousness of the Universe.
Understanding the Consciousness of the Universe
The critical advances in scientific knowledge that occurred late in the 20th century have provided a necessary bridge from science to the wisdom of religion and philosophy; thus we now have an enhanced possibility of shifting to a new dominant worldview and a level of consciousness that would include Spirit. In 1975 Fritjof Capra wrote a pioneering work, The Tao of Physics, in which he outlined the ways in which modern physics and Eastern mysticism are harmonious and consistent. Indeed, the basic elements of understanding the Universe—on which science, religion, and philosophy are now beginning to agree—are truths that have been known and written about in all major spiritual systems.
The first of these truths concerns the basic "oneness" of the Universe. That is, we are all one, interconnected and indivisible, and this includes connection between abstract and material realities. This view is also the central characteristic of the mystical experience, that is, of a direct, non- intellectual experience of reality. The idea of oneness also runs through several insights gained through quantum physics—and the implications are far-reaching. This understanding not only unites everything that happens in the visible outer world, but it also links the inner subjective world to the outer world.
The second basic truth about the Universe is that it is an intelligent field that is inherently conscious. It is through this field of energy that the inner and outer worlds are connected. In the arena of quantum physics , awareness of the energy field is rather new; it therefore goes by a number of names, including the Unity Field, the Matrix, the Quantum Hologram, Nature's Mind, the Mind of God, and, most often, the "field." In 1917 Dr. Max Planck, considered to be the father of quantum physics, first referred to this intelligent, unseen power of nature responsible for our physical world. Behind this force, he said, we must assume "the existence of a conscious and intelligent mind ... the matrix of all matter." Now, decades later, many scientists have followed in the wake of Planck's thought, echoing in their own way what the spiritual masters have been saying for centuries. An essential "discovery" of the new science—important particularly to the idea that consciousness can shift—is that the field is constantly moving, fl owing, and changing. It is thus a dynamic field of interrelated events, and the mutual interrelations determine the structure of the whole.
Excerpted from Be the Change by Duanita G. Eleniak Copyright © 2012 by Duanita G. Eleniak, PhD. Excerpted by permission of BALBOA PRESS. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Table of Contents
Introduction: Agent of Inspiration....................xix
Chapter 1: Consciousness, Spirit, and the Arts....................1
Chapter 2: "Team Spirit" and First Steps....................14
Chapter 3: Emerging—The Storyteller's Journey....................23
Chapter 4: Feeling the Sacred....................35
Chapter 5: A Heart-Stopping Performance—and the Aftermath....................50
Chapter 6: Mother Teresa and Billie's Shoes....................66
Chapter 7: Playing Lucy....................84
Chapter 8: Through the Looking Glass of Film....................90
Chapter 9: Almost Full-out Glamour....................110
Chapter 10: Transformations and Reflections....................118
Chapter 11: The Way Ahead....................134
I ~ Morning Pages....................143
II ~ "Sharing Miracles," by Duanita Gaye....................145
III ~ An Article Inspired by Emerging....................148
IV ~ Script for Emerging....................151
V ~ Intentions for Emerging....................157
VI ~ Intentions for Balm in Gilead....................158
VII ~ Aliens to Dinner, by Duanita Gaye....................159
VIII ~ "Trusting Horse Sense," by Duanita Gaye....................169
IX ~ "Signs," by Duanita Gaye....................177
About The Author....................189