Categories
Uncategorized

Seeking The Essence

I am starting a church – The Temple of the Infinite Divine – and part of that is clarifying theology and doctrines for the church. It’s an independent church, not part of any existing religion. Interspiritual. Contemplative. Activist.

One of those things to clarify is how the church will refer to what is generally called a “Higher Power”.

In Christian churches, this is God. In Judaism, it’s G-d or YHWH. In Islam, it’s Allah. Other religions have other Higher Powers – some singular, some plural. Monotheism versus polytheism, etc.

But to me, these have always felt like limits on divinity. Anthropomorphizations of a force beyond description. Consciousness beyond our limited human experience of consciousness.

“God” doesn’t really work. For years, I used, “The Universe,” but that didn’t really feel right either, so I switched to “The Divine.”

Personally, I work with four divinities on a devotional level – Juno, Holle, Circe, and Paradox.

But I don’t want this church I’m starting to be limited to my own personal experience of divinity. People who feel connected to all aspects of the divine will be welcome, provided they are willing to work towards the activist missions of the church – to feed the hungry, heal the sick, clothe the poor, house the unhoused, etc.

And then it came to me.

What it is that I am always seeking.

To connect with The Essence.

When I meet someone, I want to connect with their Essence – the core of who they are.

Soul doesn’t really work here, either, for Soul implies a dualist separation of body and spirit, and our Essence is inextricably linked to our experience as embodied beings.

And so, as part of the work on developing the doctrines of The Temple of the Infinite Divine (which might be getting a name change…) I will be referring to divinities, big and small, human and non-human, as Essences.

This has already sparked a deepening of the devotional relationships with those I mentioned above – timely, since my Word for this month is Deeper.

When I looked at the etymology of “essence” it clicked into place with a shiver up and down my spine.

Essence comes from the Proto-Indo-European “es-“.

“To be.”

Or in the present tense…

“I Am.”

And so going forward, I am seeking The Essence. Of Everything.

Categories
Uncategorized

The Power of a Word

Change Your Life One Word At A Time

Ever picked a word for your year?

It’s a pretty common practice if you spend any amount of time online during the lead up to every New Year.

I started doing it in 2013.

My word that year?

Transformation.

I didn’t really do anything with the word, though it most certainly was a transformational year.

In 2017, my word was Publish. I wrote an article on Medium every day in January, then life threw that off track. I did, however, manage to publish my first book – Bitchslap Journaling – in August of that year.

In August 2019, I started going even deeper with the words, assigning a word not just for the year, but for each month. The word that month was Sanctuary. The word for September 2019 was Surrender. My then-spouse accidentally shot themselves and I had to learn to surrender to immediate chaos and radical life-change that followed.

Every month since has had a word.

But there’s more to the practice than just picking – or receiving – a word for the year, month, season, week, or day.

When you pick a word, you’re tuning your focus. The more you pay attention to that word, the more that word becomes a lens through which to see and experience the world in a way different from your normal way of being.

And so I’ve decided to write a book, sharing the transformational contemplative practices that I use to work with words daily, weekly, monthly, seasonally, and yearly in order to facilitate transformation of my life.

Pre-order now for only $10.

Book publication date is scheduled for October 10th at 8:00 p.m. EST.

If you order before then, you’ll get access to the Google document where I’ll be actually writing the book this week, so you can read it as I write it.

And yes, I’m writing a book in a week.

It’s not the first time I’ve done it.

That book in 2017? I did that in a week, too, and the process kickstarted the most astounding transformations in my life to date – ones that are still ongoing. But more on that later <3

<3 <3 <3

Gwynne