What did I need to let go of? If everything starts in the mind as Unity’s co-founder Charles Fillmore asserts then I had to let go of some ways of thinking and some old beliefs. A belief being a thought we have had over and over imbued with emotion. That then becomes our reality. I could see how that had played out in my life.
I had grown up with a belief that there is not enough. There was always an undercurrent of anxiety around money and my dad. Perhaps he inherited this from his mother. I remember so clearly one day when we were packing the car to go on a family picnic and Nana saying, “there won’t be enough petrol to get there.” Of course there will be, we reply. So she says, “Well, there may be enough to get there, but there won’t be enough to get home.”
Funny to think of that now but it could well have contributed to my belief in lack and limitation. My life reflected “not enoughness”. I had even decided that I shouldn’t have children because each new life put such a strain on the environment. I belonged to an organisation called Zero Population Growth and invested considerable time and effort into writing newsletters with convincing articles about the sorry state of the world. (Ultimately I did let go of that belief and had a child. Though that could have been just the hormones talking.)
Taking On Some New Ideas
Now it was becoming apparent, if I wanted to experience a happier and more fulfilling life, that I would have to give up some previously held ideas. I was stunned to learn, when listening to Edwene Gaines’ tape on Prosperity, that there is a forest in Russia that is so large a house the size of the White House could be built for every man, woman, and child on earth. That was news to me. Could it even be true? I still don’t know but I think things like that helped change my mind, to see that there is an abundance and that we can all tap into it. It’s taken a long time to release the underlying anxiety but as I have worked with the idea of there being more than enough and that I have plenty to spare and to share it has lessened so that now it’s a rare occurrence instead of an every day reality.
The Denial Sandwich
Unity taught me the power of using denials and affirmations. Denial meaning releasing the idea that a thought or a belief has any power over me. And an affirmation being an assertion of the truth. One of my favourites comes from a story Edwene Gaines tells at her workshops. I call it a denial sandwich. She says that when she was researching the unpublished material of the Fillmores she came across a card with a penny stuck on it. Charles had written these words:
The inexhaustible resource of Spirit is equal to every demand. There is no reality in lack. Abundance is here and now manifest.
Apparently the Fillmores were talking about building a worldwide centre where people could come and learn the great spiritual truths that had healed Myrtle of her TB and healed many others of their ailments. At that stage they were still holding meetings in their living room. One of the men attending the meeting laughed at the idea of their dream and tossed Charles a penny saying it was for their building fund.
Well today Unity Village sits on 1400 acres of land in Missouri just outside Kansas City. It’s a beautiful Mediterranean style campus where I stayed and attended classes every summer for seven years.
How about letting go the idea that a dream can be too big?
Some ideas, beliefs are so ingrained in us that they become crystallised. Charles Fillmore talks about that in one of his Prosperity lessons stating that there is a need to keep up the cleansing process so that these old worn-out ideas are completely dissolved.
I was surprised to learn from Edwene that all debt is to do with unforgiveness. Seriously. I had no idea. But I was in debt and had no obvious way to get out of it. We had a retirement specialist come to our work to advise us how much we needed to save in order to have enough to retire. I would have needed to save my whole salary. Well that wasn’t going to happen.
Could forgiveness really solve my indebtedness? I had nothing to lose except my debts. I decided to give it a go. Somehow I got the notion that you had to forgive every significant person in your life whether you thought you had any grievance against them or not. I certainly wasn’t aware that I was holding grudges. I adopted a technique that Catherine Ponder wrote about in her book The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity. For seven days write out seventy times a day a forgiveness for each person; that meant my parents, my siblings, my aunt, and all my exes. It took months.
A couple of amazing things happened during the process that convinced me of the power of the forgiveness work. I had just finished the seven day process for my dad when I received the sweetest letter from him. A nice and radical change from the previous disapproval ones. He included a $1000 cheque. Well, that was enough to keep me going. Then I received $1000 from my eldest brother. That was proof-positive in my mind that this forgiveness stuff works.
And you know something? Without me having to squeeze the budget I did get out of debt. It was as if it all just dissolved. I can’t honestly say how it happened but it did.
I now not only wholeheartedly agree with Edwene’s statement that all debt comes from unforgiveness I go further and say any manifestation of lack in the outer (like lack of full vibrant health, lack of loving relationships, lack of fulfilling work) can be cured by forgiveness work. You don’t even have to know what you are forgiving the person for. You may have no conscious awareness of a grudge or resentment.
This is the inner work we are called to do on a spiritual path.