OWN YOUR OWN POWER
This month we will be exploring our faculty of Power, which corresponds to the color Purple, and the disciple Philip. What we want to learn and practice this week is understanding our power faculty as our capacity to transform energy from one plane to another. We want to know that God is the one and only Power. We are power transformers. We draw on the one Power and transform our thinking, feeling, body, environment, and world. We use our power for good purposes.
WE ARE POWER-FULL
We are power-full. We have all the power we ever need, just as we have all the faith, love, life and so forth. The spiritual faculty we call "power" is our ability to transform energy from one form to another. Charles Fillmore writes in his book The Twelve Powers, "The mind and the body of man have the power of transforming energy from one plane of consciousness to another."a An example of this power-transformation process is what we call "healing." We are all power transformers. What we call our "minds" and "bodies" are actually psychic and chemical factories where we transform thoughts into actions; air and food into cells; ideas into inventions and books. " In Matthew 28:18 (KJV) it says, "All power is given unto me in heaven [mental realm] and in earth [body, social, community, material realm]."b
Our great teacher and way shower, Jesus, was very powerful - and was recognized as such by the people of His time. That's one of the reasons why he was so scary to the people who were running things. Right before he taught the Sermon on the Mount - it says in scripture in Luke 6:17-19 "He came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea, Jerusalem, and the coast of Tyre and Sidon. They had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases; and those who were troubled with unclean spirits were cured. And all in the crowd were trying to touch him, for power came out from him and healed all of them."c
They understood that He was a power transformer. That by merely touching him they would be healed. What they did not yet understand was that they, too, were power transformers; that they, too, could heal and be healed - and he told them this all the time.
Like in Luke 8:43-48 "Now there was a woman who had been suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years; and though she had spent all she had on physicians, no one could cure her. She came up behind him and touched the fringe of his clothes, and immediately her hemorrhage stopped. Then Jesus asked, "Who touched me?" When all denied it, Peter said, "Master, the crowds surround you and press in on you." But Jesus said, "Someone touched me; for I noticed that power had gone out from me." When the woman saw that she could not remain hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before him, she declared in the presence of all the people why she had touched him, and how she had been immediately healed. He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace."d
OWN YOUR OWN POWER
We need to own our own power. We often disassociate ourselves from our power and we dissipate much of our power. Jesus went apart to pray and came back refreshed and revitalized with greater power than ever. We commemorate the period during "Holy Week" when he took time to go into the Garden of Gethsemane to pray and be empowered for what was to come. Should we do any less in meeting our challenges?
We need to take time apart to pray and revitalize ourselves so that we can say, as did the prophet Micah, Micah 3:8 "But as for me, I am filled with power, with the spirit of the Lord, and with justice and might, ..."e
Also, "take back" your power if you have given it to other people. Look how commonly we say, "You make me mad...you hurt me...you make me enjoy life." This is giving our power away to another person, place or thing. We need to reclaim that power, relocating it within ourselves. We have the transforming power; no one else "makes us" in any way.
Let me tell you a story:
The details of the crime were shocking: the young man broke into the woman's apartment, sexually assaulted her, shot her twice, and left her for dead. The young woman survived her injuries, and now she stood before the court, ready to make her victim-impact statement. The audience expected words of anger and condemnation. Instead, the young woman asked the court for mercy for her attacker. She asked that he receive mental help, not a prison term. And she offered her forgiveness to the young man who tried to kill her.
The presiding judge was so moved by the young woman's words that she broke down in tears. Judge Paula Lopassa remarked, "The reason I'm crying is because of her forgiving nature . . . I think that she's reflecting all the best that there is in human nature."
This is a story of wisdom and forgiveness - but it is also a story of power. If there was ever someone who deserved to go into victimhood - it is this woman. But she did not give away her power like that. Instead, she remained empowered, and offered forgiveness. We have the transforming power; no one else "makes us" in any way.
POWER IS OUR DOING ABILITY
Power is our doing ability. Power is what enables us to accomplish, to follow through, and to do. Judgment decides. Will directs. Power acts and moves on the decision as directed. Power and strength are different. Power is the moving, doing, accomplishing ability in contrast to standing firm, to being strong and steadfast. Compare strength to the quality of the wire that electricity flows through. Power is like the electricity or energy itself.
Power is our moving, doing, accomplishing ability. Strength is our ability to be firm, endure, withstand, and be strong. Power and strength need to be developed together. Jesus recognized the true power within and called that Power-Source "the Father within" that "does the work." Unity says in regard to the spiritual work each of us does: "It is not I, but the Christ within that does the work."
POWER IS OUR ABILITY TO TAKE POSITIVE ACTION WITH THE HIGHER POWER
Power is our ability to take positive action with the higher power. Power asks, "What shall we do about this situation?" An empowered person is one who has gone through the effort to find his or her truth and to create a life vision around it, and who is living this vision consistently. Let us claim our rightful power and be empowered from on high.
AA and related fellowships ask members to surrender to a "Higher Power." Power is very much an issue because a person whose whole life is in shambles due to alcoholism may stubbornly deny that "I have a problem," or insist, "I can handle it myself."
Alcoholics Anonymous, page 45-46 says: "We had to find a power by which we could live, and it had to be a Power greater than ourselves. We found that as soon as we were able to lay aside prejudice and express even a willingness to believe in a Power greater than ourselves, we commenced to get results, even though it was impossible for any of us to fully define or comprehend that Power, which is God."
EXERCISE IN RECLAIMING POWER
Here is an exercise in reclaiming your power. Think of the name of one person or situation that is troublesome in your life. What does he/she/it do? How do you need to change or be better?
Let me take what I want "other people" to do and empower myself to do that. We often disempower ourselves by only feeling critical, complaining, or finding fault with others. They certainly may have problems, which need to be corrected or helped. However, our empowering comes as we realize how powerful we are and as we mobilize our own power.
THE FIFTH CHAKRA
Carolyn Myss says that the 1st Principle we have to understand is that our Biography becomes our Biology. What you think about will manifest in your body as health or illness. And the 2nd Principle we need to understand is that Personal power is necessary for health. You can't give your power away, become a victim and expect to stay healthy. The 3rd Principle she talks about is that you alone can help yourself heal. Remember that you are made in the image and likeness of God.f
The faculty of Power is connected to our 5th Chakra, which is about will and self-expression. We have been mistaken when we thought that we have to take power. You will be powerful when you surrender your personal will to divine will. Because then, instead of having to do it all yourself - you will have all the power of God behind everything you do. The 5th Chakra is the center for the awareness and desire to make contact with the Divine plan that we were born to fulfill.
From a spiritual perspective, our highest goal is the full release of our personal will into the "hands of the Divine." As we grow spiritually we go through the perception that everyone and everything around us has authority over us. Then we grow through the perception that we alone have authority over ourselves. Then we grow into the final perception that true authority comes from aligning ourselves to God's will.
Every choice we make, every thought and feeling we have, is an act of power that has biological, environmental, social, personal, and global consequences. We are everywhere our thoughts are and thus our personal responsibility includes our energy contributions.
What choices would we make if we could actually see their energy consequences? Honesty and forgiveness retrieve our energy - our spirits - from the energy dimension of "the past." Our fifth chakra and its spiritual lessons show us that personal power lies in our thoughts and attitudes.
The essence of the 5th Chakra is faith. Having faith in someone commits a part of our energy to that person; having faith in an idea commits a part of our energy to that idea; having faith in a fear commits a part of our energy to that fear. As a result of our energy commitments, we - our minds, hearts, and lives - become woven into their consequences. Our faith and our power of choice are, in fact, the power of creation itself. We are the vessels through which energy becomes matter in this life.
It may help you to arrive at the point of surrendering if you can use symbolic sight to view your life as only a spiritual journey. We have all known people who have recovered from dire circumstances - and credited the fact that they let the Divine take over. And every one of these people shared the experience of saying to the Divine, "Not my will but Yours." If that one prayer is all that is required, why are we so afraid of it?
Our Power center is located in our throat - directly between our head and our heart. So to speak words of Power we have to find a balance between the two. Mental energy powers the external world, while heart energy powers our personal domains. So a balanced individual operates with heart and mind in unison.
If mind and heart are not communicating clearly with each other, one will dominate the other. When our minds are in the lead, we suffer emotionally because we turn emotional data into an enemy. We seek to control all situations and relationships and maintain authority over emotions. When our hearts are in the lead, we tend to maintain the illusion that all is well. Whether the mind is in the lead or the heart, we will be motivated by fear instead of internal security.
If you want true spiritual power in your life - look at the areas where you still need some work (and we all have some).
Ask yourself: Who are the people in your life that have control over you and why?
Do you seek to control others? If so, who are they, and why do you need to control them?
Are you able to express yourself honestly and openly when you need to? If not, why not?
Are you able to sense when you are receiving guidance to act upon?
What fears do you have associated with Divine guidance?
So look at these things in your life and remember that you are power-full. You have all the power you ever need. Own your own power because power is your ability to do. It is your ability to take positive action with the higher power.
I'd like to close with an interesting little piece called Soul and Sense by Hannah Parker Kimball:
Myriads of motley molecules through space
Move round triumphant. By their whirlpool pace
Shall we be shaken? All in earth's vast span,
Our very bodies, veer to other shapes,
Mid the mad dance one stubborn power escapes,
Looks on and marvels, -- 'tis the soul of man.g
aCharles Fillmore The Twelve Powers
gSoul and Sense Hannah Parker Kimball