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Awareness Magazine
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You Can Change the World

By Guy Finley


A great secret rests inside the heart of every human being: Each of us is created with the power to change the whole world.

Every human being is born into this world with a nascent interior light. We can think of this light as the power of higher conscience by whose compassionate intelligence we learn to discern what is helpful from what is harmful — to intuitively know the difference between what is good and true, and what is dark and destructive.

When we do our part to make this power active within us, we begin to realize the great truth that nothing on Earth has the power to hurt us. After all, how can any negative force prevail if the light of conscience reveals its unsavory character before it begins its punishing action? Just think of the promise in such a power! Fear, stress, worry, anger, regret, and resentment could hold no sway over our hearts and minds. We are liberated to do what is right and loving in any moment we choose — no matter the circumstances life brings our way.

Now, you may ask, “That’s a wonderful idea, but what does my own higher conscience have to do with changing the world?”

In a word, everything! Consider this: Is there any speck of light anywhere in the universe that isn’t part of all the light in the universe? The answer is “no.” Our own common sense, ancient wise philosophers and sages, and modern Quantum physicists will all agree: Light is timeless and indivisible.

Building on this truth, let’s ask another important question: Is there any speck of darkness anywhere in the universe that isn’t part of darkness everywhere in the universe?

Again, the answer is evident. For instance, is the dark hatred or fear that consumes a soul in Britain any different in nature from a similar dark state that consumes someone in Brazil — even though the two are thousands of miles apart? We can clearly see that they are both part the same darkness.

Now, here’s why this idea is exciting to those of us who truly wish to change the world: If we bring light into any darkness anywhere, is not darkness everywhere made less? Must not even the tiniest bit of light added to even the greatest darkness leave that same darkness not so impenetrable? The answer is a brilliant yes!

Once we agree to actualize the Living Light in our own individual life, everything around us, including things beyond the sphere of our awareness, is altered in its fundamental makeup. Negating even the smallest negative positively changes the whole of reality. All that’s required to realize this promising fact in our life is that we first understand the possibility of changing the world, and then make the specialized interior effort to effect this grand transformation of life...

And here is exactly how we do it: we no longer allow ourselves to identify with any negative state, regardless of why that state tells us we must embrace its painful presence. We must become as ruthless in detecting and rejecting dark thoughts and feelings as they have been ruthless in wrecking our lives. Here is why this instruction is such an imperative if we wish to know the bright life.

Each time that we say “I” to what is destructive or corruptive in us; we actually incorporate and reinforce that same dark state. For example, when we say, “I am angry,” or “I am stressed out,” we literally give consent for the dark force of anger or stress to live inside of us. We become the embodiment of the negative state, and it strengthens its hold on our heart and mind. I know this may seem like a radical idea, but if we observe this process in action, we find that it’s absolutely true.

Whenever we identify with negative forces, we unknowingly provide them with two conditions they can not otherwise have: First, we give these chaotic states a place to appear within a plane of reality to which they ordinarily have no other access. And second, at the same time, we lend the vital life energies they must have to sustain their life-draining presence within our psychic system.

There is great power contained in this new understanding, for when we refuse to supply negative states with the vehicle and the life force they need to survive, they cannot flourish. Withdraw water from where weeds grow, and they will wither; it’s a natural law. So, if we wish to end the relationship with what compromises us, we are only required to do one thing: we must no longer lend ourselves to the will of any dark state looking to use us as its vehicle.

This means in moments of trial, our first task is to wake up, become fully aware of ourselves, and then dare to do the light thing. Here are five simple exercises that you can use to prove this powerful universal principle to yourself:

1. Help to make the life of someone else go a little easier in spite of it making yours go a little harder.

2. Refuse to criticize yourself, or anyone else, for not living up to your expectations.

3. Give no voice to any part of you that wants to complain about anything.

4. Catch yourself in a dead run to get something done and voluntarily drop out of the race by deliberately assuming a casual pace.

5. Take one difficult moment and use it as a place to start all over instead of a time to sink into self-pity.

By practicing these 5 exercises, you’ll discover the great power behind the principle of not giving a life to negative states. You‘ll begin to see how, when we do the work to change ourselves, the whole of life begins to the change for the better. Our health improves, our relationships improve, and we begin to realize our part in the great work of becoming a brighter and brighter embodiment of the light of the world.

Excerpted from Let Go and Live in the Now by Guy Finley (Red Wheel/Weiser)

Guy Finley is the bestselling author of The Secret of Letting Go, The Courage to Be Free, and 40 other works that have sold over a million copies in 20 languages worldwide. He is the founder and director of Life of Learning Foundation in Merlin, Oregon.

On Sunday, November 10 at 1:30 pm Guy will be giving a talk at the Newport Beach Civic Center Community Room entitled “The Secret That Makes All Negative States Afraid of You.

For more information, visit