New Spiritual Leadership: Applications of Meditation in Real Life

 After the completion of iamU, our two-year training in Heart Rhythm Meditation, we offer further courses of study in Mentoring, Heart-Energy Healing, and now the latest program, Spiritual Leadership.

So what is a spiritual leader in this day and age?

The definition is broad and diverse.  The world is a beautiful mess: people suffer from all kinds of ailments, physical, emotional, and spiritual.  Our daily lives are complicated by the tension between sweet moments and painful moments.  We all understand the human predicament of longing for happiness, for health, for deeper understanding, for better jobs, more stability, more love. 

The spiritual leaders are the guides who help make meaning of this suffering, who know the path, who volunteer to act as servants in their communities.  Their perspective includes both the practical and the mystical.  There are many people who might qualify as spiritual leaders— rabbis, priests, imams, gurus, therapists, friends, grandparents, school teachers.

In iamHeart, our spiritual leaders use Heart Rhythm Meditation to develop their intuition, breath capacity, emotional understanding, and ability to live their human lives with more flow, success, and wisdom.

Spiritual service comes in many forms.  The Message of the Heart is about embodiment, living fully, making a heaven of earth by embracing our earthly lives with love and patience. 

The goal of the iamHeart Spiritual Leadership program is to inspire each student to discover and embody the specific message that they are here to communicate.  This means that whatever our main issues have been throughout our lives physically, emotionally, and spiritually—these are the issues that we’re most qualified to help others with.  Inadvertently we become experts in dealing with our most painful and problematic experiences: being overweight, feeling lonely, wrestling pessimism, failing in business, avoiding our family life.  We have experiences that help us relate to the suffering that others feel, and we may have experiences of great success after a struggle.

After this deep, specific learning we can become wisdom-generalists over time and have a wider reach in service, but we start with our own poignant life-knowledge.  As one of our teachers, Dana Duclo, said beautifully, “We are the message."

A few weeks ago we completed the first two-week training residency here in Tucson, Arizona.  A great portion of the time together was spent preparing and practicing presentations that were given to the whole group.

The presentations were about topics chosen by each student to represent their own personal spiritual quest, and how they have used Heart Rhythm Meditation to realize their potential. 

Joy Jensen picked a very relatable and practical topic: “Overcoming Fear of Money: Discovering the Source.”  She shares honestly in her presentation about some of her own specific issues with money, her embarrassment, and how she got to the root of her fear.

Manuel Brunner from Austria presented on the relevant topic of “Self Mastery.”  He talks about his own struggle feeling unmotivated and passive.  He uses Heart Rhythm Meditation to access more active energy.  In Heart Rhythm Meditation we use an upright posture, which all by itself promotes self-discipline.  The full, balanced breath requires intention and awareness.  Over time one builds up a sense of self-confidence through these simple adjustments to the everyday breath, and works towards more Self-Mastery.

The collective creative flow called forward incredible presentations from each person on all kinds of topics.  Each person made huge strides in distilling their particular flavor of Spiritual Leadership after just a few months into this eighteen month program.  The students are working on developing Heart Rhythm Meditation workshops, classes, and programs to help other people transform their fear of money, their burn out, their strained relationships, their suffering.  

Spiritual Leadership is about service to humanity, in all its many shapes and forms.  The powerful atmosphere of service throughout the residency caused inevitable spiritual growth for everyone in different ways.  We’re looking forward to more web courses in the Spiritual Leadership Program from August through May, and then our final two-week residency next summer when we all graduate from this unique and powerful training.

I am reminded of this poetic speech, attributed to an unnamed Hopi Elder from the Hopi Nation in Oraibi, Arizona:

"You have been telling the people that this is the Eleventh Hour, now you must go back and tell the people that this is the Hour.

And there are things to be considered . . .

Where are you living?

What are you doing?

 What are your relationships?

Are you in right relation?

Where is your water?

Know your garden.

It is time to speak your Truth.

Create your community.

Be good to each other.

And do not look outside yourself for the leader."

Then he clasped his hands together, smiled, and said, "This could be a good time!"

    "There is a river flowing now very fast.It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid. They will try to hold on to the shore.

They will feel they are torn apart and will suffer greatly. 

    "Know the river has its destination.  The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above water.   And I say, see who is in there with you and celebrate.  At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally, Least of all ourselves.  For the moment that we do,  our spiritual growth and journey comes to a halt. 

    "The time for the lone wolf is over.  Gather yourselves!  Banish the word struggle from your attitude and your vocabulary.  All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration. 

    "We are the ones we've been waiting for."

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