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Happy New Year to you all - dear friends of the Globalisation for the Common Good Initiative (GCGI) January 1st 2011

“and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.”- Micah 6:8

“Blessed is the season that engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love”- Hamilton Wright Mabie

GCGI wishes a joyful and healthy New Year to all of our members, supporters, sponsors and friends around the globe.

As the New Year unfolds I am happy to share the following with you. As it has been noted, again and again, by all the sages, prophets and philosophers of love:

“There is magnificent beauty all around us when we choose to observe life through love. There is also amazing wisdom right within us when we are patient and listen to our heart. These sublime qualities become a spontaneous part of our experience as we expand our awareness and go beyond our immediate reactions, preconceived expectations and limited notions. Some may call such a life of innate joy an unattainable heaven, where others realize it to be a natural way of living.

What we presently perceive as our reality, individually and collectively, is in fact a very limited perspective of a much grander adventure. The intricacy and magnitude of our combined thoughts, feelings, hopes, dreams and desires, is astounding. Our ability to imagine potentials, coupled with our capacity to manifest these ideas and make them tangible experiences, is nothing short of miraculous. The evidence is obvious in the intense diversity we find ourselves experiencing right now on our planet.

With this diversity comes incredible opportunity. Never before have we realized our creative capacity and simultaneously, the enormous responsibility held within each of our creations. We are rapidly becoming aware of our active participation in a shared reality that reaches far beyond us individually, our immediate family, friends or local community. The ideas we presently entertain in our own consciousness are the seeds of a future yet to be made, that literally affects the whole. What we are currently conceiving and imagining will eventually interact with others, either enhance or destroy our expressions, and ultimately influence our collective lives.

Whether we experience life as a form of heaven or something less than that is simply a matter of where we place our attention. If we continue to focus on things that are limited, destructive, based in lack or held in the past, we are destined to create more of the same. Yet, if we are bold and steadfast, we are able to recognize the splendor held within each moment. We understand the nature of our personal creative abilities through our thoughts and feelings, and we willingly intend and experience outcomes that benefit all.

These are not idle speculations, an ignoring of present circumstances, or intentions of false hopes. Quite the contrary, this is acknowledging and knowing that we are powerful beyond our wildest imagination and that we do in fact, have an effect on what happens next. Love is the key that unlocks our greatest possibilities. It is the presence of love that becomes increasingly obvious as we take time to notice it and integrate it into every experience. This is heaven and this is the potential that awaits you in 2011”.

Finally, I wish to share the following two poems with you, always a source of comfort to me consoling all those with bleeding hearts hoping for fairness, respect for human rights, justice and peace and the common good, to heal our troubled world.

"The Peace of Wild Things" - Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For the time I rest in the grace of the world and am

"Don’t Despair Walk On" - Hafez

Joseph to his father in Canaan shall return, don’t despair walk on;
and Jacob’s hut will brighten with flowers, don’t despair walk on.

Aching hearts heal in time, vanished hopes reappear,
the disparate mind will be pacified, don’t despair walk on.

As the spring of life grows the newly green meadow,
roses will crown the sweet nightingale’s song, don’t despair walk on

If the world does not turn to your whims these few days,
cosmic cycles are preparing to change, don’t despair walk on.

If desperation whispers you’ll never know God,
it’s the talk of hidden games in the veil, don’t despair walk on.

O heart, when the vast flood slashes life to its roots,
Captain Noah waits to steer you ashore, don’t despair walk on.

If you trek as a pilgrim through sands to Kaabeh
with thorns lodged deep in your soul shouting why, don’t despair walk on

Though oases hide dangers and your destiny’s far,
there’s no pathway that goes on forever, don’t despair walk on.

My trials and enemies face me on their own,
but mystery always backs up my stand, don’t despair walk on.

Hafez, weakened by poverty, alone in the dark,
this night is your pathway into the light, don’t despair walk on.

From: "The Spiritual Wisdom of Hafez" - Translated by Haleh Pourafzal and Roger Montgomery

In the meantime I wish you love and peace as always, and would like to
conclude my New Year Message by quoting this poem by Lao Tzu that I have
often recited in my teaching and dialogue with my students:

Some say that my teaching is nonsense.
Others call it lofty but impractical.
But to those who have looked inside themselves,
this nonsense makes perfect sense.
And to those who put it into practice,
this loftiness has roots that go deep.

I have just three things to teach:
simplicity, patience, compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and in thoughts,
you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,/You reconcile all beings in the world.