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Archive for the ‘Spiritual Evolutionary Training’ Category

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Posted: June 15, 2019 at 11:48 pm

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Whats The Secret to Accelerated Evolutions Power?

Accelerated Evolution is deceptively simple; but it is the exact, direct, unadorned and pierce to the core nature that has quickly made it so popular with physicians, executives and high-level coaches around the world.

There are two parts to every challenge the objective and the subjective facets.

The objective problem is comprised of the circumstance or facts.

The subjective challenge, however, is merely our reaction or the mental/emotional lens we subconsciously bring to the external circumstance. Often these lenses obscure clarity of vision, alternative solutions or the fact that there is actually no problem at all!

Used skillfully, the guided techniques of Accelerated Evolution Method allow anybody patient, client, consul-tee, coach to internally address and magically dissolve these lenses quickly, predictably and permanently.

Watch a Demonstration of an Accelerated Evolution Method

Combining these laser-guided techniques, you will succeed in helping them dissolve and clear destructive, stubborn and suppressed limiting thoughts and distressful emotions that have been causing these paralyzing states to metastasize and persist.

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June 15th, 2019 at 11:48 pm

Monika Nataraj – Mystical Dance, Shakti Spirit, Teacher …

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Explore the depths of your true essence and the call of your soul. Dive into Truth, Divinity and Beauty, and recognize they are One. A mystic's path is direct, spontaneous, unique and blissfully alive. Share the vision and practices of this Mystical Dance of life, stemming from a place of stillness and returning to Source. "When the realisation is deep, your whole being is dancing." ~ Zen saying.

Discover the secrets of tantra: the integrated yoga of intimacy. Tapping into the transformative power of ritual and chakra energy movement, we delve into techniques to catalyze our life force towards spiritual transformation. Based on traditional Indian Tantra, and presented with relevant information from Taoism and alchemy, Monika guides us in the ancient practices of cultivating and focusing our creative potential and polarities. Heart-centered and balancing, Tantra is a path of love and awareness. Tantra workshops are offered in India, Turkey, Canada, U.S., Thailand, France and Japan.

Visit our Tantra Section >

Unveil the power and mystery of dance and movement as gateways for self-development and spiritual evolution. The Mystical Dance Teacher Training Course (MDTTC) is a unique opportunity for women to immerse themselves in a five-week, 250-hour intensive program, weaving together sacred dance, ritual, tantra, meditation, and self-discovery. Body and spirit unite as we dive deeply into everyday tools for empowerment, celebration and igniting the Divine Feminine within. The 9th annual MDTTC is held on the paradise island of Koh Phangan, Thailand, February 11 - March 16, 2019.

See our Teacher Training page >>

~ Who Am I? Where do I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? ~ If you seek ayoga and meditation system that goes beyond physical exercises and advanced stretching, which is holistic, scientific and confronts you with the fundamental questions of life and the Universe ... search no further. The mysticism and esoteric wisdom of Indian and Tibetan tantra yoga are in your reach. WisdomWoman Yoga is offered in many of Monika's workshops. Highlights include chakra knowledge, meditation and purification. This year she will be offering a special Women's Movement and Meditation certificiation retreat in France.

Visit our Yoga Section >>

Turkey is a magical, ancient land the gateway of the Orient, charged with long lineages of women who danced in celebration of Life. Join Monika in this living prayer as we dance our dreams awake under the summer stars. Ritual, Mystical Dance, Sufi Whirling, mythical explorations, and so much more! August 2019 marks the next session, including a 5-day residential retreat in Bodrum at the confluence of the Mediteranean and Aegean Sea at Karakaya Retreat. An optional dip into a holistic detox retreat is offered at the LifeCo July 24-31. A legendary Goddess experience awaits.

Turkey Dance >>

Mystical Dance strives to open a window for the modern seeker to embrace dance as one of the many beautiful tools for re-kindling our inner radiance and dancing the Divine into existence ... moving beyond merely 'being the dancer' to knowing that we are also the dance. Mystical Dance begins where regular technical dance instruction ends. It is about dancing from the inside out. Reveal your radiant Shakti in a powerful, awe-inspiring circle of sisters. Shimmy, Laugh, Contemplate, Discover, Bliss Out. Upcoming workshops in Thailand, Japan, India, Turkey, USA, France and Canada.

Mystical Dance page >>

The Dharamsala Film Festival (DFF) celebrates the eternal play between consciousness and creativity by promoting outstanding independent films focusing on spirituality and sacred arts. Four annual DFF have launched at the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts, McLeod Ganj, Himachal Pradesh, India, along with other sponsored special events. Rejoice in film as a transformational vehicle for fostering awareness and change and as a cross-cultural medium for soul-level evolution. The DFF is the first international, spiritual film festival in Dharamsala, the home of H. H. the Dalai Lama.

DFF page >>

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Monika Nataraj - Mystical Dance, Shakti Spirit, Teacher ...

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June 15th, 2019 at 11:47 pm

A Course in Miracles Minister Training –

Posted: May 16, 2019 at 5:48 am

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The Ordained Ministerial Counselor training applies the principles of A Course in Miracles to spiritual ministry. Being an Ordained Ministerial Counselor (OMC) prepares you to fulfill your purpose of serving in this time of the Great Awakening. Upon completion of the Ministerial Curriculum you are qualified to offer Accessing Inner Wisdom Spiritual Counseling as well as to facilitate Pathways of Light Spiritual College courses and 8-week programs.

Click each course for details & fees. Click again to close.Click here to see a summary of curriculum fees.Click for FAQ about downloadable e-courses.

You may still feel plagued with fear, anger, resentment, self-doubt and guilt cropping up here and there. Intellectually you know better, but those old, subconscious scripts still seem to be around.

Self-image transformation means changing the way we perceive ourselves. To transform our self-image, we don't need to change what we do. We need to change who we think we are. What we do comes from who we think we are. In A Course in Miracles we are taught to remind ourselves frequently, "God is but Love, and therefore so am I," and "I am not a body, I am free. For I am still as God created me."

This course will provide practice in becoming aware of the trance formations that make us act like robots, controlled by unconscious, habitual ego belief systems. You will learn to retrain your mind to develop new mental habits while releasing those old mental programs that are limiting and painful.

Click here to view a sample of E-Course 132 with a link to listen to the guided meditation.

Credentialed Correspondence E-Course 132 Downloadable: US$109.00 free shipping worldwide (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order E-Course 132.

Credentialed Correspondence Course 132 in a Binder: US$109.00 plus shipping (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order Course 132 in a Binder.

Self-Study E-Course 132 Downloadable: US$54.00 free shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order E-Course 132 Self-Study.

Self-Study Course 132 in a Binder: US$54.00 plus shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order Course 132 Self-Study in Binder.

This course seemed simple on the surface; that was deceptive! It was so much more than I expected. I value hugely what it brought up for me. It has led to better relationships with my loved ones and greater inner peace.

This is a very powerful, invaluable course. It helped me learn to identify false self-image beliefs and transform these false beliefs to truth with the help of Spirit.

I felt that through the readings and visualizations, I made a greater shift to the Light within. My self-image improved. I feel more open to love, joy and peace. I really felt that this was a major shift for me.

I learned to look at how I think about myself and change that image with the help of Inner Guidance.

This course allowed me to stop, and become aware of the gaps and differences between what I have manifested into my life and relationships to date, and what I consciously desire to focus on. I gained valuable insights into how and why I set up limiting relationship patterns..

This course helped me realize at still another, deeper level that I make the trance scripts and I can let them go with the help of Holy Spirit. I also enjoyed the experience of deep peace and feeling connected with my Source in the meditations..

This course brought me clarity and a sense of peace about where I am in my life. I was able to focus more clearly on differentiating between ego and my Higher Self, especially in relation to my own issues of worthiness.

As you open to understanding your true purpose, you enter a new time a time of looking at the concepts you are holding about yourself and others and letting them be replaced by the awareness of your unlimited True Self.

Understand how the veils of forgetfulness can be lifted to give you a new sense of life purpose. Learn how to change your beliefs about time. Learn to access long-held thought patterns you picked up as a child, and heal these limited thoughts with the help of the Light within you. Find out why it is important to quiet your mind and listen to your Self, and how you can better serve your true identity as Spirit in this life.

Receive insight on new choices, new ideas, and learn how you can extend the qualities of your true Self in your life. Take an inward journey to a Haven of Greater Awareness to connect and identify with qualities of Spirit, such as universal Love, and feeling deep inner peace. Transcend time and communicate with your unlimited Self. Imagine seeing life differently in the years ahead as you dissolve blocks to the greater awareness of Love's Presence. Practice seeing yourself knowing and expressing your true life purpose.

Credentialed Correspondence E-Course 112 Downloadable: US$109.00 free shipping worldwide (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order E-Course 112.

Credentialed Correspondence Course 112 in a Binder: US$109.00 plus shipping (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order Course 112 in a Binder.

Self-Study E-Course 112 Downloadable: US$54.00 free shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order E-Course 112 Self-Study.

Self-Study Course 112 in a Binder: US$54.00 plus shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order Course 112 Self-Study in Binder.

Wow. It was such a joyful, elevating experience. The meditations were deep and transforming. It was an enlightening experience, more than I expected.

The exercises were created in such a way that they directly got to important life issues. I felt like I shook hands with myself and my unconscious self. I learned to create a bridge for conscious dialogue with Higher Self.

For the first time in my life I found myself going very deeply into guided meditations. I always brought back some important new information, some new awareness. I was impressed with the gentle and nurturing approach. Growth doesn't have to hurt.

I would recommend this highly as a powerful class for opening to the Higher Self.

I love all the extra benefits of these courses how they are synchronistic with events in my life. I also love the little jewels in each course sentences that are profound. I increased my sense of peace.

It made me aware of my issues and my solutions. I gained insight into the changes I need to make to get back to my True Self. The experience was relaxing, rejuvenating, profound and very enjoyable. The materials are simple, direct and precise.

I have the knowledge and the ability to change my present experiences by changing my thoughts and beliefs about the past, and to have a future of Love, peace and joy. It helped me a lot with meditation. The CDs and the course brought the wisdom I needed to access my Inner Truth.

This course helped remind me why I am in this world and assisted me in remembering/discovering how to return to the reason: My purpose. It has come at an extremely difficult time in life, thus proving extremely beneficial.

I believe that the course opened areas of forgiveness for me to a greater degree than ever before. It allowed me to review and release situations in my life which I still held judgments about. I am aware to a greater extent that my Higher Self is always there to help and comfort me.

In this course you will look at core aspects of your personality which are holding on to ideas that do not come from your true Self. Some of the ways these aspects express themselves include self-righteousness, suffering, victimhood and projecting guilt and blame onto others. If you still find yourself sabotaging your innate happiness, this course will give you practice in identifying and healing those self-defeating aspects. You will learn how to quiet your mind to let your true Self lovingly transform your mind your thoughts and feelings to higher levels of awareness.

As you learn to quiet your mind and listen, you awaken to the real you to your true Self. As you gradually welcome awakening to your inner Spirit, your experience changes to allow in more joy, love and the knowing that you are safe in God. Your true Self is your true nature, the essence of what you are. You will learn to allow in the awareness of your true Self more fully and receive helpful insight. Your true Self is your inner Teacher and will help you transform your thinking to see the outer world differently to live a happier and more purposeful life.

As your thinking increasingly comes from your true Self, you become more gentle with yourself and others. You are able to see past the fearful thinking and resulting behavior in yourself and others, to see the true reality of Love that lies behind all fear. You are able to make choices and decisions from a place of Wisdom and peace.

Credentialed Correspondence E-Course 111 Downloadable: US$109.00 free shipping worldwide (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order E-Course 111.

Credentialed Correspondence Course 111 in a Binder: US$109.00 plus shipping (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order Course 111 in a Binder.

Self-Study E-Course 111 Downloadable: US$54.00 free shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order E-Course 111 Self-Study.

Self-Study Course 111 in a Binder: US$54.00 plus shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order Course 111 Self-Study in Binder.

It really helped me look at areas in my life that I wasn't facing. The meditation CDs are wonderful and I enjoy listening to them more than once or twice. This course reinforced my values and beliefs in my spirituality.

By becoming aware of the limiting aspects in my personality, I can more clearly choose to hear my Inner Guidance. Receiving the guiding vision of my True Self was very moving and powerful.

This course reinforces the work I am doing with A Course in Miracles. The CDs facilitated getting in touch with my True Self and receiving a vision of the next evolutionary step of my "practice."

This course helped me clear away the blocks that prevented me from discovering my true Higher Self and has freed me to proceed with my personal growth. It has a helpful, building block approach of recognition, healing, cleansing and awareness. The excellent recorded meditations were so helpful in guiding me through inner explorations.

This course is more far-reaching in its scope than I anticipated. It facilitated a change that is an ongoing process. My experience can only be described as miraculous. I stand a changed person on the inside, thereby creating a changed perception on the outside. I gained a deep sense of union with myself and an absolute conviction that I am never alone.

By doing one of the exercises and applying the insights to my daily life, I came to a clearer understanding that I was projecting my limiting personality characteristics onto those whom I seemed to get upset with or angry at. With this realization, it became easier to see myself in those people, whom I used to blame for their 'bad' behaviors. I was them and they were me! Seeing oneness with those who seem to upset or hurt me has been a big challenge for me. But this experience helps me move in the right direction.

All the exercises brought me to deeper and deeper levels of my being. The meditations were profound and moving. I was able to see things so clearly.

The meditation CD helped lead me to the Holy Spirit (inner guidance) naturally, to a profound depth of inner insight, with peace and Love.

There were many ah-ha's, such as: All need for "specialness" is a belief in scarcity a belief that there's not enough goodness or universal abundance to go around.

I realized that my abundance is so incredible that I couldn't even really imagine how great it is. And the Holy Spirit is there to guide my creativity. Each session was so right on. It amazed me how effective they were.

This course will help you feel more confident about trusting your Inner Guidance, spiritual intuition and your ability to know what is right for you. Trust opens the door to living a purposeful life, following Spirit. Trust helps you experience the quiet peace that comes with letting go of fearful thinking. When you trust that your Source is working for you and with you, you relax and allow It to lead you.

Learn how to let go of the doubt that cuts you off from experiencing trust in areas of:

Learn what pushes your buttons, causing you to lose your trust, and how to get back to trusting your true Self as your source of Guidance. Trusting your inner Teacher changes how you see everyone and everything. This trust allows you to see the world from a new perspective of oneness. As you place your trust in your true Self, you see through the false veils of ego thoughts of conflict, limitation and lack. You are unlimited Love and Light. The more you can trust in the Christ within, the more it will be reflected in your life.

Credentialed Correspondence E-Course 114 Downloadable: US$109.00 free shipping worldwide (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order E-Course 114.

Credentialed Correspondence Course 114 in a Binder: US$109.00 plus shipping (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order Course 114 in a Binder.

Self-Study E-Course 114 Downloadable: US$54.00 free shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order E-Course 114 Self-Study.

Self-Study Course 114 in a Binder: US$54.00 plus shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order Course 114 Self-Study in Binder.

I increased my awareness, commitment and TRUST in Spirit, learning to see that Spirit does the work and I just need to be mindfully connected in a place of peace, allowing it to take place.

I learned so much about myself. This has been the best course for me yet. I learned to locate the things that trigger mistrust for me and how to trust Spirit more.

I was reluctant to take a correspondence course, preferring the group sharing environment. I was very pleased with the opportunities and insights I received by doing individual and guided facilitated study. I would now recommend correspondence as a very valuable experience, and I would correspond again in the future.

Trust has been an issue with me in the past. I believe that by doing this course, I attained a new level. The experiential work allowed me to feel trust in a way that is wondrous and new. It is the experiential meditative exercises which made this course come alive for me.

The meditations are profound. I play the meditation CDs over and over, and each time I hear them differently. So I have an actual "physical way" to realize the layers that exist and work with myself at each level.

I gained a renewed trust in Self, extending that trust to everything and everyone. I became aware of areas I want to let go of and areas I want to focus on to make stronger in my life.

It helped me realize how powerful my thoughts are and how important it is to monitor my thoughts. I was able to release some doubt I had in communicating with my Higher Self.

It helped me let go of doubt and fearful beliefs of separation, and to trust my inner powerful Light and true Self. I can trust in Love to heal all things.

I learned to trust my inner Self, listen to It, and relish the beauty It gives me. Simply amazing!

Within everyone is a desire to return to Love, our Source. In our search for Love, we may look to someone outside of ourselves to give it to us. In this stage we are not aware of the Love within. We don't recognize our inner worth, our Light, our own perfection. As long as we continue to look outside ourselves to fill this sense of emptiness, we will feel unfulfilled.

When you realize that you have not found Love by looking for it from others, you are ready to go into a new stage of your life. You are ready to walk into an expanded awareness of Love. You are ready to consistently express your true unconditional loving nature. You are ready to wake up to What you are. In this course you will practice healing and releasing your barriers to Love. With the support of others, you will experience the depth of unconditional Love which lies within you. You will learn how to tap into this reservoir and bring Love to situations in your life which need healing.

You will learn to let go and let Love take over, seeing the world from a new perspective. You recognize that Love is giving, not getting. As Love extends from you, the sense of scarcity and lack gently falls away. Extending the Love that you are is your top priority. It is what you are here to learn and teach. You will focus on opening up to that Love and letting It shine through. Love is the healer. It will change your life.

Credentialed Correspondence E-Course 115 Downloadable: US$109.00 free shipping worldwide (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order E-Course 115.

Credentialed Correspondence Course 115 in a Binder: US$109.00 plus shipping (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order Course 115 in a Binder.

Self-Study E-Course 115 Downloadable: US$54.00 free shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order E-Course 115 Self-Study.

Self-Study Course 115 in a Binder: US$54.00 plus shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order Course 115 Self-Study in Binder.

It helped me remember that love is everywhere and that I can share love without fear or anxiety. The processes were uplifting and inspiring. I feel peaceful all over again.

This course helped me remember that everyone, including myself, perceives the world based on our fears, feelings of lack and inadequacy, etc.... That we can only allow in the amount of love that we feel we desire. This allows me to see situations in a manner that is more serene for myself and others. This is a course I will definitely repeat for myself.

It was a very love-filled experience. I absolutely loved the material and exercises. It had a nice balance of meditation, processing and reading material.

This course helped me feel more comfortable in expressing the positive things I feel about other people. It also provided an unusual opportunity to receive positive comments about myself in a comfortable, safe environment, which helped lower my defenses.

I realized that I have looked for love outside of myself and do not see myself as a vessel of love. The experience of having the group tell me that I am worthy and deserving of love was profound. I truly value this experience.

The sharing with my inner child experience helped me recognize that I am love and loving.

My inner child received a healing and incorporated some new, healthy qualities. I now have a greater desire to love others. It helped me move through resistance to receiving love. It also helped me realize the value of extending love at all times.

This course gives an overview of the important ideas and lessons presented by A Course In Miracles. You will to learn to tell the difference between ego thoughts and the thoughts of your true Identity. You will learn to choose peace instead of conflict, Heaven instead of hell.

Learn a process that helps you see past the physical form to the Light in everyone. It helps you forgive the people in your life whom you find difficult to love. Take an inventory of your patterns of right-minded and wrong-minded thinking and practice shifting your thoughts toward right-minded thinking with the guidance of the Holy Spirit in your mind. Focus on the true Self in others and experience how that focus helps you recognize the true Self in you. Learn how to transform upset feelings into a healed perception with the help of the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit's teaching is a lesson in remembering. Let us join together in our remembering. It takes just a little willingness.

This course also includes a 3-CD set (MP3's with the downloadable e-course) of Gary Renard explaining ACIM in a full day workshop.

Credentialed Correspondence E-Course 203 Downloadable: US$126.00 free shipping worldwide (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order E-Course 203.

Credentialed Correspondence Course 203 in a Binder: US$126.00 plus shipping (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order Course 203 in a Binder.

Self-Study E-Course 203 Downloadable: US$71.00 free shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order E-Course 203 Self-Study.

Self-Study Course 203 in a Binder: US$71.00 plus shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order Course 203 Self-Study in Binder.

Before this course, I didn't know anything about A Course in Miracles even though I had tried to do some reading on it. Now I feel like I have a very good overview of ACIM. It was very enlightening for me. I have more clarity about the ego and forgiveness.

This course brought healing on many levels. I experienced a deep healing with the Forgiveness meditation. I have been working with ACIM for over 10 years, yet this course brought greater understanding and clarity with it.

The Forgiveness and Recognizing Illusion & Reality meditations were especially meaningful for me. I want to work with them more.

All the meditations were valuable. I was particularly moved by the exercise in which we practiced seeing the Light in each other. It was a deeply beautiful class that called upon me to see the Truth in all situations.

My experience has been one of relaxing and opening to the concepts a deep peace an open pathway. This has been very different from the way I first entered the Course.

This course helped me experience insight into myself and my belief system. I now realize that the only thing that needs to be healed is my belief in separation from God. Once this is healed, all seeming lack in my life will disappear.

You don't have to experience life as a serious, stressful, day-to-day grind. In this course, you will identify the mental habits you may have developed which create tension, guilt and self-doubt. See how inappropriate expectations cloud your ability to experience unconditional love.

Learn how you are unconsciously telling others how to treat you, to fit your unconscious expectations. Discover ways you may still be following the unconscious expectations of others or trying to live up to unhealthy models of perfection. See how learned childhood responses become unconscious knee-jerk reactions. Learn how to release these reactions for a happier life. Realize that you are not your programming. Consciously choose how you want to feel and how you want to think. Connect with your Inner Source of direction. Learn to be in peace and be happy.

This course will help you allow more constructive inner scripts which empower you. You will learn to perceive yourself and the world in a way that brings happy experiences of unconditional love, no matter what is happening around you.

Credentialed Correspondence E-Course113 Downloadable: US$109.00 free shipping worldwide (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order E-Course 113.

Credentialed Correspondence Course 113 in a Binder: US$109.00 plus shipping (includes 2-3 hours with your facilitator). Click here to order Course 113 in a Binder.

Self-Study E-Course 113 Downloadable: US$54.00 free shipping (does not include facilitator or certification). Click here to order E-Course 113 Self-Study.

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A Course in Miracles Minister Training -

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May 16th, 2019 at 5:48 am

Teacher Training – Shiva Rea

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After many years of offering our integrated program of solar-lunar evolutionary vinyasa from the roots, we are so happy to offer our first LUNAR only Teacher Training path.

Join vinyasa teacher Shiva Rea and the Global Prana Vinyasa Collective for new Personal Change and Professional Teacher Training programs to create balance, healing and greater accessibility of all forms of yoga for all.

This is an all-level teacher training path for your wisdom, life-experience and embodiment without any physical restrictions upon the level of your asana practice. In this training you develop your skills to

Program includes live modules in both healing and sacred places around the world and urban yoga centers combined with our Yoga Alchemys Lunar Arts Online Program integrates lunar arts into your daily life through the rhythm of the year.

Embody and Learn:

54 / 108 / 200 / 300 / 500 Hour Certification Pathways. Complete your pathway with the Lunar Arts Modules that fulfill your desired contact hour certification and speak to you as Lunar Prana Flow Yoga Teacher & Wellness Guide.

Choose your combination of modules:

Core Modules (Required, if taken in past 5 years with Shiva may count)

Lunar Prana Vinyasa - Slow Flow Lunar Foundation Prana Vinyasa or Slow Flow Lunar Elemental Prana Vinyasa

Soma Prana Flow - Tantric Yin

Elective Modules

Power of Pranams - Practices for Healing and Balance

Chakra Prana Flow - Tantric Movement Meditation

Rasa Prana Flow - Art of Tantric Yin

Bhakti Prana Flow - Devotion in Motion

Shakti Prana Flow - Healing and Empowering Practices for Women

Sahaja Prana Flow - Flow Arts and Ecstatic Yoga Trance Dance

Inner Arts - Meditation Mandalas

Woven into the tapestry of the Lunar Arts Prana Flow modules you will learn and circulate:

Foundation, Elemental, Chakra, Rasa, and Bhakti Meditations, Mantras and Mudras

Additional Elective Course Modules:

Relaxation in Flow: Soma Prana Vinyasa and Moon Salutations

Global Ecstatic - Yoga Trance Dance & Tribal House Jam

Tending the Fire - Living in Rhythm to explore the Art of Teaching

Body Flow Arts: Self-Partner Massage

Prana Flow Massage I - Rolling Arts - Self-Massage Tools

Prana Flow Massage II - Nadi Flow Arts- Nadi Sampradaya & Ayurvedic Massage

Prana Flow Massage III - Anatomy through Massage: Know Thy Self

Online Sadhana at

Living in Rhythm

Online course offerings for all offering seasonal and lunar cycle meditations, sadhanas, and reflection. Supports health, vitality, and embodied living in sync in with nature.

Modules (live and with online course support) and Descriptions

Power of Pranams - Practices for Healing and Balance

Experience the Power of Pranams- the practice of bowing within to full recpeptivity to the earth and rising that is at the heart of the worlds spiritual traditions, central to yoga in India and open to all as a universal movement meditation. Learn to teach and practice pranam as movement meditation- flow for all.

Lunar Prana Vinyasa - Slow Flow Foundation

Applies theory of Elemental and Foundation Prana Vinyasa- embodying Earth, Water, Fire, Air, and Space with focus on the Lunar Prana Flow sequences and creating a healing, calming quality to the elemental sadhana. You will learn 5 Lunar Prana Flow Elemental namaskars or 5 Roots Lunar Prana namaskars and Lunar Prana Vinyasa sequences.

Soma Prana Flow - Tantric Yin

Soma Prana Vinyasa is a moving meditation into a deep whole-body opening, relaxation as a flowing tantric-based approach to lunar or yin yoga. This regenerative practice offers one half meditative Prana Vinyasa namaskars and deep lunar mudrasanas, and one half inner arts of meditation, mantra, mudra, self massage, and deep savasana. Soma is a Vedic-Tantric understanding of the revivifying elixir-nectar, the secret to longevity, and a refined healing essence that can be generated with us through forms of meditation and natural flow.

Chakra Prana Flow- Tantric Movement Meditation

Chakra Prana Flow embodies the circular power of the Chakra Prana Vinyasa mandala namaskars as lunar healing arts. This sadhana includes one or more of the four Prana Vinyasa Chakra namaskars paired with long lunar mudrasanas, backbends, inversions, mantra, pranayama, and deep savasana.

Rasa Prana Flow - Art of Tantric Yin

Literally translated as juice, essence, taste, plasma, alchemy, or transformative state rasa assumes the concentrated essence of something, such as the sweetness of the mango. Rasa Prana Flow cultivates the relaxing, softer essence of the four Rasa Prana Vinyasa namaskars and sequences. You will learn to invoke lunar energetic states of flow through Prana Flow namaskars for Vira, Sringara, and Shanti rasas.

Bhakti Prana Flow - Devotion in Motion

In this transformative immersion, we will integrate both universal and traditional yoga practices of the heart and awaken and regenerate the body of love through meditations of the mystic heart, transformative Prana Vinyasa backbending sequences and life practices. This module explores heart practices to open us to every breath for cultivating love and compassion to support our health, longevity, and genuine happiness.

Shakti Prana Flow

This module is a path to awaken the living connection of the sacred feminine from fertility, pregnancy, motherhood and the change that continues to deepen through the loving and transformative process. Deepen your cultivation of embodied spirituality, opening to and nurturing the creative juices, creative empowerment, and wisdom change. As students we explore how to teach Prana Flow lunar arts for women through three Shakti Prana Flow practices , exploring the universal aspects of the Goddess as Great Mother.

Sahaja Prana Flow - Flow Arts and Ecstatic Yoga Trance Dance

Learn to lead this internationally celebrated prana yoga and free-form movement meditation. For yoga teachers and yogadventurers who are interested in the interconnections of yoga and dance, this Trance Dance intensive provides the basic tools to explore the foundations of Yoga Trance Dance.

We are all born knowing how to dance; this inherent movement is well documented as one of the oldest planetary yogas. Evolving since 1994, Yoga Trance Dance is a contemporary exploration of the spirit of dance within yoga. Beginning with sahaja prana vinyasa or the experience of prana initiating yogasanas in a spontaneous, natural flow, yoga trance dance unfolds into an exploration of free-form, breath driven movement to liberate ones creative life force and cultivate embodied freedom.

Additional Elective Modules

Relaxation in Flow: Soma Prana Vinyasa and Moon Salutations

Experience a regenerative immersion into Soma Prana Vinyasa - a tantric yin approach to rejuvenation and meditation in motion. Soma is connected to the inner water, ojas (essence, vitality, and amrita), and the healing energy that can green a desert, and restore love. Includes practical tools for soma cultivation in Tantra, Ayurveda.

Global Ecstatic - Yoga Trance Dance & Tribal House Jam

Experience a universal tribal gathering into the roots of trance as a rhythmically induced state of natural flow that is innate within all beings. The activation of free-form movement as one of the oldest ecstatic pathways of collective meditation. This dynamic and rejuvenating exploration accompanied by global tribal rhythms from the roots and contemporary pulse will release tension, generate energy and new neural pathways, entrain your breath, heart and brain wave rhythms to all the movers and shakers around the world.

Tending the Fire - Living in Rhythm to explore the Art of Teaching

Experience the integrated approach of Prana Vinyasa as a living and teaching flow to navigate the rhythms of body and mind. Through daily practices, workshop-style practicums and interactive presentations, you will learn and experience energetic, elemental sequences within Prana Vinyasa Flow as well as the Ayurvedic insight for awakened and illuminated living.

Apply online to our Lunar Arts program


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Teacher Training - Shiva Rea

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May 16th, 2019 at 5:48 am

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Living Institute Existential-IntegrativePsychotherapy Diploma

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Practical, hands-on psychotherapy trainingThree year plus part time training program Evening and weekend classesAcademic learning - Personal experience - Practical skills

This experiential, competency based program draws on the humanistic, existential, transpersonal, psychodynamic, archetypal and somatic depth traditions. We offer consciousness development, a service orientation toward cultural evolution and an appreciation of the spiritual dimension of nature.

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Calendar of Classes2018-19| Application Form | Enrolment Information|Faculty Biographies| Tradition Based Psychotherapy Competencies

The Living Institute is a teaching centre committed to exploring humanistic, psychodynamic, existential and mythological themes in individual, cultural and cosmological evolution. The basis for this work is the Holistic Experiential Process Method (HEP). HEP is a model for understanding systemic management and growth that is both social and personal, providing a method for facilitating the evolutionary emergence of self-organizing complexity from apparently chaotic disorder.

The Living Institute recognizes the importance of spiritual and human values in institutional and organizational functions that serve society and culture, based on the interdependence of humans with each other and the natural world.

The Living Institute is also participating in the current re-emergence of spiritual models that draw on ancient cosmologies, from both eastern and western mystical traditions, where nature is seen to embody patterns of integration that link the part with the whole, so that everything is understood to be interconnected.

What makes the Living Institute exceptional is the depth and breadth of our faculty. They are leaders and innovators in their fields.

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welcome | The Living Institute

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May 16th, 2019 at 5:48 am

An Evolutionary Roadmap for Belonging and Co-Liberation …

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Read the companion piece to An Evolutionary Roadmap for Belonging and Co-Liberation.

Dear Shanthi

In my thirteen years working in the field of racial equity, primarily in government, colleagues from the District Attorneys Office, the library system, and the health department brought to our attention the need to more fully integrate and prioritize healing, trauma-informed work, the arts, and power analyses into teaching methods. In the training we were providing public servants, numerous people expressed the need for more frames and structures that embodied belonging.

Because we do not spend time creating, articulating, and embedding the models and frames we do want that embody health and well-being, our strategies are often partial and at times can be harmful. All of this is strengthened by how sound bites are prioritized over complex and nuanced analyses in communication, how historical amnesia is more valued than critical historical reflection, and how conditioned we are to promote ruptured relationships within ourselves and to each other, our institutions, and our planet.

This essay is part of the work Ive done to put my experience and analysis in a frame that speaks to the whole health, life, and death of the living systems we are looking to improve and heal. This framework focuses on embodying belonging and co-liberation, and is an attempt to map out an emerging DNA of what belonging would look like when tied to health, spirituality, resilience, and well-being.

This work can be deeply challenging because many of us feel the need for certain kinds of proof of these connections in order to engage with an analysis around them. There is a tension between wanting to use the social sciences to research and define findings from this framework, as it would lead to more healthy societies together, and a solid desire to not root this inquiry from either a place of defense or the need to buy into unhealthy systems and ways of knowing and being.

We spend so much time articulating, framing, and researching things that are symptomatic of and rooted in oppression. We are experts at this. Weve all been schooled in the modern project that thrives on valuing capital and profits over people and ecosystems, setting up hierarchies within and around all of that based on race, sex, gender, religion, ability, and ideology. White, male, and hetero-centered thinking being the dominant system of our theories and culturethese are the waters we swim in.

john a. powell, director of the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society at UC Berkeley, speaks about a systemic antilife project. Hardened nation-states bent and dependent on isolating groups as other are gaining momentum. Our biological and conditioned needs for certainty cause anxiety and stress. Globally, were seeing the dire effects of climate change and illness. Our collective rhythms, which are intrinsically linked to the health of the earth and should be in sync with our ecosystem, are off.

Dr. David Williams, Professor of Public Health at the Harvard T. Chan School of Public Health, speaks of the negative health impact of high levels of incivility and how hostility in the larger environment can create adverse impacts as well. The experience of such angst and weathering is not equal across populations. People of color and other marginalized populations live shorter lives, tend to get more sick while young, and experience greater severe illness.

Although many cultures possess a wealth of knowledge around the interconnected worlds of spiritual and social change, the reality is that in todays antilife project, many religious and economic systems have poisoned the waters around this embodied connection that many believe is inherent to what it means to be fully human.

The terms we use to define these concepts,and realities, can be tricky and sometimes, themselves, may produce an othering effect when used. The definitions and language used mean many different things to different people. Its important to note that terminology and language have been used to erase or deny key aspects of well-being and justice.

Also important is the recognition that people who forefront their engagement with the work of spirituality have been perceived as too often conducting that work at a mostly individual level, without acknowledging, and often outright denying, that we are connected to larger systems that produce racial injustices and outcomes. A damaging belief that many religious and spiritual practices hold is that things like racism and inequities just happen because a [insert any higher power] deemed it so. This denies the socially constructed reality of injustices and helps maintain an innocence to how complicit we actually are in their creation and maintenance. On the other hand, many involved in equity work often leave out a discussion of anything perceived as spiritual because it is seen as synonymous with the negative aspects of religion affecting populations across the globe for centuries.

More movements are choosing to lead with traditionally marginalized people who carry cognitive and spiritual maps together with the wealth and wisdom of their own lived experiences. The entertainment industry is giving rise to marginalized experiences, reflecting liberatory movements and visionary ideas. New forms of knowledge production are on the rise. Decolonization efforts are gaining momentum. Indigenous communities are leading movements in visionary ways that are rooted in ancient cultural and spiritual beliefs.

The impetus for the following framework is the recognition of our need to make better alignments toward what is healthy for all of us. This work centers on and builds from the experiences and paradigms of people of color while also speaking to the fluidity and multidimensionality of our identities, bringing into the fold all populations.

The reality of belonging is that all of these strategiesof leading with ways that shift consciousness, that utilize different modes of critical examinationare already within us. They are not outside of us collectively or individually. They are present and waiting for us to break down the barriers that hold them back from organizing into social arrangements that bring us health.

This framework is intended to be a dynamic model that can adapt and evolve. While the work is emergent, I do offer specific key strategies as examples of what the muscles and fiber of the framework look like in the following key areas: beloved; be still; behold; believe; becoming; and belonging, co-liberation, and well-being.

These six guideposts work together. Doing work in one is often tied to others. Ultimately, all guideposts and actions are grounded in the root of belonging and in recognition of the beloved, or the larger interconnectedness we all belong to.

The social outcomes we are striving for can be seen as similar to the experience of the leaves and branches of a tree when it is healthy. These areas are also the DNA and living threads that run throughout the entire frame as a whole.

When I was growing up in Eastern Congo, meetings in the small community I lived in often happened in the shadow of a tree. It was a place of rest and work, but it also held religious and cosmologic significance that I was aware of, although limited given that I was an outsider. This experiencesitting on the ground and around natural formsis a very different model than a table or in a cube. It elicits some questionsWhere do we meet? How do we meet? And then its not just about the form.Its about the why.

Across all the watercolor pieces I drew to accompany this essay, there is a movement. We start from more of an individual perspective as an accessible entry point for the viewer, all the way through to the group perspective. The figures and images move from more of a sitting position to standing. Sitting is more appropriate in the beginning because it makes one think of pausing. Colors move between them, the use of shimmer is consistent, the green appears universally, as do the reds and the purples. I dont know where many of these images came from. Ive never seen them before. Thats something I think is interesting to reflect on in the process, which is that things emerged that I didnt plan for, that came from a different part of my brain. They came more from the gut.

Samuel Paden

Societies never know it, but the war of an artist with his society is a lovers war, and he does at this best, what lovers do, which is to reveal the beloved to himself and what that revelation, to make freedom real. James Baldwin

This figure was a Gaia figure for Beloved. A spirit figure and a genuine person. I attempted with this piece to speak to the connection between self, open heart, and greater life, of expansion and growth. Samuel Paden

At the root of belonging and co-liberation is the living connection among the spiritual, ecological, social, and political realms. It is based on how our individual and group realities are just as multifaceted, multidimensional, and connected as the greater living systems of which we are a part. The components in this frame of beloved and be still are intrinsic to our nature as the type of living systems that we are.

We speak deeply to what it is we love, what and whom we care for, and what we find sacred. This area speaks to the practice of openness, openheartedness, expanding our circles of human concern, and committing to put it all into service. It is essential to understand that we are hardwired to experience this, both unconsciously and consciously, to maintain mutually beneficial relationships with each other and with the planet. Our collective health is guided by both spiritual and social well-being, and negatively affected by surplus suffering in both connected realms (john a. powell, Racing to Justice, 2011).

Beloved is not a romantic ideal. To love and to be loved can also be tough, grainy, and sharp. It can require putting up necessary boundaries, unearthing what is poisoning us, or deconstructing something creating excessive suffering.

This might mean taking the time to connect to a deeper purpose toward equity and belonging, articulating that purpose, and revisiting it regularly in meaningful and provocative ways.

Our health and well-being benefit from connecting to what we find sacred and actively embodying a greater interconnectedness. Such engagements can decrease the feeling and experience of social isolation. Research has shown us that the experience of social isolation and mortality is similar to the effects of cigarette smoking and mortality.

Social and collective spaces and practices that embody the beloved can improve our well-being by providing necessary social and emotional support, strengthening our collective sense of purpose in this work, and improve our nonverbal and socially intuitive abilities that call forth love in all of its forms. Shelly Tochluk describes in her book Living in the Tension: The Quest for a Spiritualized Racial Justice the context of how these practices occur and why it matters. Religious or spiritual practices can also be employed in power over ways, furthering the exclusion of those deemed others, worsening mental health.

Going nowhere, as Leonard Cohen would later emphasize for me, isnt about turning your back on the world; its about stepping away now and then so that you can see the world more clearly and love it more deeply. Pico Iyer

The intention with this piece was to engender a sense of calm and reflection, and coming around what is important. The figure is folded inward, surrounding a circular object in the middle. This painting also speaks to the connection between Be Still and Beloved. Be-stilling is all about holding, connecting with, and caring for what we love and hold sacred. Samuel Paden

A crucial guiding principle of health and healing is that you must be more still than the thing in front of you that you seek to effect. This type of action, prioritizing this be stilling, is not typically rewarded in a world that emphasizes profit over people and which asks us to be complicit in our addiction to speed. We are taught to act on the fly and quickly.

Yet the amount of complexity in navigating the world today requires wisdom, not strategy alone. Developing skills around patience and creating informed actions from this space help make the best of our energy, resources, and time. Being still can help create more energy, energy of the most creative kind; the type of energy required during immense periods of change and turmoil. Being still is a constant struggle and involves attention to prioritize greater reflection and silence.

It is through the consistent practice of being still that we are able to touch what we have available to us and what is already present. A key and well-researched strategy for be still is for people to reconnect to the natural world, spending time with the other species that coinhabit the earth with us. Our nervous systems seem to recognize our interconnection with other species and can relax nonverbally into the living web. We find the core rhythm we have with other living systems to be mirror images of our own species as partners in something more expansive than any one thing.

There are direct ties to the well-being of our individual and collective bodies, and by employing in our work, we can better behold what we are striving to organize and support.

Being still slows down the part of the nervous system that stimulates our fight-or-flight responses (our sympathetic nervous system) and improves our abilities to rest and digest (our parasympathetic nervous system). We are better able to repair ourselves and eliminate our toxins. These processes are inherent to who we are as human beings. When we are out of balance, bringing about greater equilibrium in these ways not only better sustains our health but also helps us be the vehicles for social change we aim to be. Research from neuroscientists suggest that all models of social change could benefit greatly from a be-stilling space and practice as a part of the work.

Socially, there are great possibilities to integrating meaningful reflection and pause. Being still does not mean we remain in a state of inaction. We need our responses to be timely and accurate when it comes to responding to political infection and toxin. Anger and frustration are necessary emotions and movement builders, activating our organizing muscles and actions. Yet bodies are healthier if they are able to maintain balance. Prioritizing a grounding in mindfulness and stillness best helps the initiation and recovery from our mobilizing and change efforts. We improve our abilities to more accurately and holistically behold and take in situations and people in front of us when our collective and individual bodies are calmer.

You cant be what you cant see. Melissa Harris-Perry

The fundamental feature of every now reveals itself, not in only what is past or what is present, but also in what is absent. Ernest Bloch

This particular sphere is about decolonizingholding what is in our view as living systems and not as dead and mechanical. The figures and the globe are all interconnected, highlighting the global nature of belonging and co-liberation, as well as oppression and othering. I deliberately cropped the beings at the perceived ends of their body, as that space is critical to speak to no beginning and no end. I also deliberately included different colors, shades, and the presence of androgyny. This shows how the dynamism of our identities enriches what we are able to Behold.Samuel Paden

Our ability to mobilize and organize around the areas we care about and want to bring greater health to depends on our mapping of the areas and the issues themselves. Capitalism and supremacy run deep socially, and I am constantly shocked by how something so huge, so systemic can affect what we can see and understand in the first place before any related strategic action even happens. There are deep wells of anger and grief around witnessing these partial social lenses that are strengthened by historically perpetuated systems of oppression, misused power, and othering.

If we come from a grounded place of love and stillness, we can better hold what is in front of us, as a compassionate doctor effectively holds what a body is presenting to her in order to better understand its current condition, what led up to it being ill, and where to go from there in terms of healing strategies. Spiritual and social teacher Reverend angel Kyodo williams pressingly asks in her writings, What is being left out? How do we better notice and identify where we enact superiority around who should experience greater life chances and health?

Beholding applies not just to the structural conditions of the situation or topic but also to the emotional and relational balance present or not present. We are not adept at recognizing pain and suffering connected to social illnesses. To behold while grounding in spirit-based and liberatory practices calls for first touching base with beloved and be still. This will open up to a greater interconnectedness and resulting willingness to stop seeing things from conditioned perspectives and will calm our nervous systems socially and individually. We can better see, listen, and feel clearly from these spaces. Bearing witness to hope, as well as grief and anger, propels this work into the transformative by increasing our understanding of the suffering we hope to shift.

How do we embody the ability to literally behold what is in front of us and work toward greater well-being? How do we expand our frame by integrating decolonizing practices and multiple methods of knowing and learning, helping us move to a space of liberation and not toward simply a kinder, gentler suffering? Beholding for colonizing influences, as well as places of expansion and health, helps provide a more accurate map of change, including where our implicit biases play a role in the perpetuation of surplus suffering.

Key behold strategies also move us to push the edges around how strongly we place value on simple communication. While there is an elegance to conveying things in simple ways, as well as experiencing improved accessibility, we often misapply the simple rule and reward overly simplistic analysis, solutions, and approaches in order to increase our number of likes, for instance. What we behold is affected by our negative connotations to things we project and deem as overly complex, perhaps because they lay just beyond our realm of conditioned and perpetuated understanding. While I think all things can be better laid out in simple and engaging ways that speak to our overly stimulated minds, the processes and outcomes of belonging require us to be with multiple perspectives, to integrate some space for chaos and messiness, and to allow strategies to emerge from this.

Key racial equity-driven movements possess incredibly sharp lenses and analyses to better behold racial inequities and the contributing structures and practices to the undergirding systemic racism that roots it all. Examples of such analysis include the tool kits and processes put forward by the Government Alliance for Race and Equity, Race Forward, and PolicyLink. All of these groups have also been expanding their frames to integrate healing- and trauma-related content, practices, and questions, helping to more accurately behold what they are seeking to transform. And with this expansion, I look forward to these efforts and countless others to be more intentionally grounded in indigenous-based decolonizing analyses, leading to more accurately identifying and addressing systemic racism and oppression as well as their antidotes. Examples can be found in the work of Vanessa Andreotti of the University of Vancouver, British Columbia, and that of Sandew Hira of the Decolonial International Network.

For the masters tools will never dismantle the masters house. They may allow us temporarily to beat him at his own game, but they will never enable us to bring about genuine change. Audre Lorde

The predominance of red and largeness of the form that are related to ones beliefs speak to how much we are guided by what we believe and what incredible passion moves through us as a result. The presence of eyes as part of that Believe form above the head of the figure also speaks to the strong influence what we Behold has on our beliefs. The paint appears to be in motion, in the cloud formations above the figure, as well as into, out of, and through the figure, speaking to how dynamic and powerful our beliefs can be. Samuel Paden

Glenn Harris of the organization Race Forward shared the following astute observation: You need believe to be a part of this frame if youre really going to address systemic racism.

We collectively hold and perpetuate beliefs of superiority, which state that some people deserve to experience illness, poverty, and unequal chances at lives of ease. Such beliefs help inform the design of our social arrangements, keeping rigid racial and social hierarchies in place. Just as with the natural laws of our own personal bodies, our beliefs about the mappings of our social body and its anatomy influence how we move and how we think we can move.

Merely learning about belief systems that breed supremacy and superiority are not enough. Knowledge alone doesnt interrupt or disrupt. This is something I experienced myself in my own professional work, complicit in promoting, for example, that educational sessions could help solve the issue as sole strategies. All the trainings and capacity-building sessions in the world wont change the culture of racism alone. Such beliefs will still be present without, first, their thoughtful and consistent deconstruction and, second, the centering of beliefs that expand our collective imagination and promote well-being.

So how does what we behold relate to what we believe? What and how we behold affects what we believe and how fiercely our grip is on those beliefs. If were taking in partial information that goes unexamined, our beliefs will reflect that, and then our actions or inactions are partial as well and possibly even more harmful than we intended.

Somewhere between what we behold and what we believe are processes of noticing, attaching huge feelings to what we notice, and then crystallizing all of that into mental formations and, eventually, beliefs.

What are some practices in believe that can help us lead to greater belonging and co-liberation? For starters, we can intentionally build in practices that help us critically question and interrupt our conditioning and assumptions, both used with situations and people external to us, and those that guide how we view ourselves internally. This could look like creating spaces, just like in artistic processes, where we focus on looking at the things were working with from multiple perspectives. We turn it upside down, put it on its side, and engage people most affected by inequities to tell us what they see. We might find examples of superiority and inferiority. From here, our presence and willingness to change, which weve developed in be still, and our ability to more clearly behold help us shift such beliefs.

And just as important is connecting what we believe to what is beloved. How can what we believe about what guides us toward belonging and well-being be grounded in the natural laws of interconnectedness and in the connection between the social and spiritual? Grounding in such wholeness and sacredness is helped along by surrendering and de-emphasizing intellect-only approaches, which most often guide how we create and maintain our beliefs. Such surrender also helps our innate, as well as our constructed and learned, needs and obsessions to experience certainty at all times. Connecting believe to beloved involves engaging with multiple ways of knowing and being, allowing us to better engage with the unknown.

After all the years Ive dedicated to working with racial equity, and doing so from within heavily bureaucratic and usually white-led hierarchies, the energy to sustain my contribution cannot be disconnected from my being a queer woman of color from an immigrant background, and one who has also struggled with chronic illness. Tarell Alvin McCraney shared in his keynote at the last Othering & Belonging conference that if we turn our attention to those who dont want us or if we believe weas communities of color, as queer people, as all the aboveshould not live, we leave unprotected our own people.

There can be real negative health impacts to working with people who believe we should not live, and within our movements, we need to get more strategic and real about how, with whom, and in what ways we work within oppressive structures.

This framework is unapologetically based on promoting an expansive ethics of caring. We are hardwired for connection. This is also true in relationship to human caring, having memories of caring and being cared for. The experience of such caring is connected to having an ethical response to bring about justice, for instance, or address inequities.

Having a deeper understanding of power and acknowledging the power that comes from spiritual practice and personal challenges can also increase our relevance to the communities we work with. We rarely use power-mapping techniques that include the power we get from within. This intellectual approach to landscaping power can unintentionally disempower our organizations and communities. While its hard to quantify spiritual or emotional power, leaving it out of the overall picture leaves little room for us to imagine ourselves as powerful. Kristen Zimmerman, Neelam Pathikonda, Brenda Salgado, Taj James

Becoming doesnt have results yet. It is sparse. But the figures are all in this space together. There is an engagement in a similar soil, although they are distinct, very much so. Some are connected, and some arent. There is a form of a tree thats singular, but theyre part of that tree. -Samuel Paden

Feedback from activists and advocates across sectors on this framework helped refine the concept. What does spirituality and practice have to do with building power? Why should I care at all about a bunch of theory with no application? Show me why all of this is important. I found it challenging to try and describe a connection that I had been culturally and spiritually taught was ever-present and self-evident, which could also only be described verbally up to a point. But research guiding the frame makes it clear that these areas of building power, activism, and spirit-based practice were inextricably linked.

Becoming, belonging, and co-liberation are inherently messy at times, nonlinear, and can elicit multiple perspectives that love and hate, and include and exclude, the emerging innovations and alternatives. This frame has both resonated with many people by providing more expanded views of change and ways of being to improve their work and turned people off who shared they felt the need to actively disengage with it. And then there were many people who said they just didnt have the language to comprehend what they were seeing and reading, and wanted to learn more.

There are a few key learnings here. First, epistemic injustice has been perpetuated for centuries around splitting spirit from matter and spiritual suffering from social suffering. While the laws that protect us from the harrowing and negative effects of church integrating with state affairs are necessary, we seem to have also thrown out Beholding and embodying the positive health social and structural practices of meaning-making, connecting to purpose and what we love and hold sacred, and acting from a place of essential interconnectedness (Beloved).

Also, spiritual practices denying and not integrating social practice is a contributing factor. For many justice-focused people, not integrating spiritual practice that denied the realities of social and racial injustices was a protective factor and necessary in order to maintain the required focus on structural and systemic change to bring about greater belonging.

Lastly, language. Language can be used to exclude or include, often tied to desired outcomes and agendas that are not usually transparent. I have been complicit in these acts as well, as I imagine all of us have been. The tension is the desire for accessibility for the masses alongside the desire to what we commonly refer to as speaking truth to power. Of course that speaking is also influenced by our formal and informal schooling, experience of intersecting cultures, and our need to participate in the systems of capitalism in order to live.

Ultimately, I believe that if our feelings, thoughts, connections to what is sacred and to a greater interconnectedness, and beliefs are moving along the journey towards belonging and co-liberation, then our communications and actions will follow. We desperately need not just multi-verse, but pluri-versal decolonizing ways of talking, discussing, and enacting, and within that, leading with the voices of the most marginalized.

Becoming practices seek to deconstruct barriers and colonizing processes and support emerging alternatives to such colonizing realities. For those within bureaucratic systems, Becoming can look like hospicing the things that are dying, which are also harming our collective well-being and health, and hacking or breaking up and through oppressive structures and practices.

Building power and organizing economically, politically, socially, and spiritually are key to strengthening the branches and bridging structures in the tree of belonging. Such organizing is done, however, in a more supported fashion by grounding in what is Beloved and in the liberatory strategies of Behold and Believe. A key priority throughout would be the resiliency and well-being of all of us engaging in this work, if we elevate and focus on conditioning as an integral part of Becoming. One of my interviewees, a fifth-degree black belt, shared that people doing social and racial justice work need to condition ourselves. Most of the work of karate is about conditioning ones mind, body, and soul for if and when a strike occurs. The art isnt geared toward taking people out, but rather developing an immense preparedness and solid health in order to work through the fights.

Becoming is non-linear and dynamic, although still embedding strategic thinking, narrative, and action. Organizing movements that embed spirit-driven practices as defined in this article are growing; in the national and local scenes, we need to hold up these examples and strive to embody their learnings in order to more accurately achieve our social visions for belonging, and sustain our individual health and resiliency. Examples of these movements include: generative somatics trainings, healing justice strategies put forward by groups such as WorldTrust, transformative leadership sessions held by the Movement Strategy Center, yoga and equity initiatives, the collective strategies embodied by indigenous movements worldwide, and so many more.

You cannot change any society unless you take responsibility for it, unless you see yourself as belonging to it, and responsible for changing it. Grace Lee Boggs

I define politics as the ongoing collective struggle for liberation and for the power to createnot only works of art, but also just and nonviolent social institutions. Adrienne Rich

Action is happening both up and down, in both the Belonging individual and Belonging collective [next page] paintings. In the collective one, there is looking at the tree and the results, but its not singular. There are all of these different voices and the state of living and being organic. What I was wanting to have concentrated in the visual is whats happening in our communities. Its not a singular person or thing, its multiverse.- Samuel Paden

Aspects of this frame came to life as she was talking, grounded in what is beloved, decolonizing what they were beholding, and becoming in such a holistic, intergenerational way. Alone, each one of these aspects is not enough. But if approached and interacted with as an interwoven whole, they light up as a map toward the experience of greater social health and belonging, take shape, and self-animate. As we play with working models, such as this embodying belonging and co-liberation frame, it is crucial we take the time to reflect on our experiences and take in through all our senses what feels differently when enacted. By doing this sort of intentional and holistic reflection we solidify healthier ways of being, and going back to our old more destructive ways will be unthinkable (Dr. Darya Funches, Founder of REAP Unlimited, on the meaning of transformation).

For to be free is not merely to cast off ones chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others. Nelson Mandela

We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are. Anais Nin

Our shared work in justice-related efforts calls for us to renew, cocreate, and follow boldly emergent narratives and frames that urge us to embody belonging every step of the way. How we get there matters if we want to improve our overall outcomes while also sustaining and promoting positive health and well-being during the journey.

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An Evolutionary Roadmap for Belonging and Co-Liberation ...

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May 12th, 2019 at 3:53 am

Hidden Light Codes – Espavo – Stronger Spiritual Life

Posted: April 30, 2019 at 1:45 am

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January 18, 22 & 29, 2018Registration Now Open

In these times of evolutionary change the emotional body must realign itself. This modality is particularly helpful in assisting that realignment. It works through 16 energetic pressure points on the physical body, each relating to an area of the emotional body that deals with relationships. The emotional body translates these pressure points into new electrical pathways in the nervous system. Once these are activated they start to be used if they have not been previously. Once a synaptic pathway is activated and opens, it supports the emotional body in the corresponding relationship area. In most people, some of these are already activated. This is an opportunity to realign all of these codes within you or your clients.

It makes life easier with less relationship drama. This allows you to be more spontaneous and real in all relationships.Of the sixteen hidden light codes, most people will have eight or more of these that need activating. Not everyone needs the same ones.

In this three day event the group will take you through the 16 codes and show you how to activate them in others. The group will also activate each of these in you so that you can experience it. It is the perfect energetic alignment to start the new year.

Each day will conclude with a Journey Activation to reinforce the subject matter of that day.

This is a Certified OverLight Training that also provides a downloadable workbook. This training is for those wishing to add more to their already existing healing practice or for anyone wishing to experience the activations online from the group.

There are no pre-requisites to this course. It might be helpful for you if you have read/studied our Spiritual Psychology material.

Over three intensive days we will activate all 16 hidden light codes within you to assist you to improve your life and work. There will be one Q & A session with Steve & Barbara on the last day.

All classes are aired live, with recordings available for viewing afterwords.

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Hidden Light Codes - Espavo - Stronger Spiritual Life

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April 30th, 2019 at 1:45 am

Evolution Healing Center – A Spiritual Retreat in Yarrow, BC

Posted: March 27, 2019 at 8:40 pm

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Emotional ImbalanceApril 14, 2016Emotional Imbalance plays havoc with our organs.

All too often emotional imbalance and the inner turbulence it creates is the Bane of our existence.

New medical science estimates that 90% of our mental and physical impairments are emotionally oriented.

These emotional challenges we carry, keep us in the way of ourselves more than we care to realize.

Depression is a condition of energy depletion it is possible to lose perspective and project depression onto unrelated areas of life, thinking that you are depressed because of this or that condition, instead of understanding the real cause: energy depletion If you can accept and open to depression, you will recharge your energy reserves instead of suppressing the depression with self-rejection, such as becoming depressed about the depression. ~ John Ruskan, Emotional Clearing.

Heres one example of an experiment that is happening all around you, and may well happen to you one day. If you get run over today and you break your hip, you will probably be given diamorphine, the medical name for heroin. In the hospital around you, there will be plenty of people also given heroin for long periods, for pain relief. The heroin you will get from the doctor will have a much higher purity and potency than the heroin being used by street-addicts, who have to buy from criminals who adulterate it. So if the old theory of addiction is right its the drugs that cause it; they make your body need them then its obvious what should happen. Loads of people should leave the hospital and try to score smack on the streets to meet their habit.

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Evolution Healing Center - A Spiritual Retreat in Yarrow, BC

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March 27th, 2019 at 8:40 pm

LIFE RESEARCH ACADEMY – Past-Life-Regression & Spiritual …

Posted: March 24, 2019 at 1:45 am

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DetailsCategory: general

Life Foundation


A Two-Day Workshop On

Past Life Regression & Spiritual Science

What you are today is the sum total of your past, which not only includes your past from the present lifetime but also from all your previous lifetimes as well.The memories and impressions, of each and every moment your past, are stored in your subconscious mind which shapes your personality.



This workshop is designed to help you in the following ways:

Target Audience

This very intensive workshop on soul-journey and self-discovery is very useful for individuals:


There is no prerequisite for attending this Workshop.


This empowering and wisdom based workshop has three main aspects:

The workshop is arranged to answer many of your questions and the practical sessions are designed to bring about a transformation in your life. A wide range of audio-video multimedia presentations on related topics would also be presented during this training program to give you the best possible information and enrich you overall experience.


The Workshop Includes The Following Topics:Essentials of spiritual science: astral travel, third eye, kundalini energy, aura, e.s.p., intuition, akashic records, thought power, spirit guides, master's wisdom, over-self contact, meditation, past-lives, future lives, self-healing, dream mastery etc.

Apart from the above sessions, there are other practical sessions on various extra-sensory-perceptions (ESPs) like telepathy, psycho-kinesis, astral-travel, aura reading etc. that will help you understand your true multidimensional nature.

Workshop Schedule

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LIFE RESEARCH ACADEMY - Past-Life-Regression & Spiritual ...

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March 24th, 2019 at 1:45 am

Evolution – New World Encyclopedia

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This article is about evolution in the field of biology.

Broadly defined, biological evolution is any heritable change in a population of organisms over time. Changes may be slight or large, but must be passed on to the next generation (or many generations) and must involve populations, not individuals.

Similarly, the term may be presented in terms of allele frequency (with an "allele" being an alternative form of a gene, such as different alleles code for different eye colors): "Evolution can be precisely defined as any change in the frequency of alleles within a gene pool from one generation to the next" (Curtis & Barnes 1989). Both a slight change (as in pesticide resistance in a strain of bacteria) and a large change (as in the development of major new designs such as feathered wings, or even the present diversity of life from simple prokaryotes) qualify as evolution.

However, "evolution" commonly is used more narrowly to refer to the specific theory that all organisms have descended from common ancestors, also known as the "theory of descent with modification," or to refer to one explanation for the process by which change occurs, the "theory of modification through natural selection." The term also is used with reference to a comprehensive theory that includes both the non-causal pattern of descent with modification and the causal mechanism of natural selection.

Evolution is a central concept in biology. Geneticist T. Dobzhansky (1973) has stated, "Nothing in biology makes sense, except in the light of evolution," and biologist Ernst Mayr (2001) has stated, "Evolution is the most profound and powerful idea to have been conceived in the last two centuries."

Nonetheless, the concepts of evolution have often engendered controversy during the past two centuries, particularly from Christians, whose traditional views have been challenged both by the long time period of evolution and by the purposeless, materialistic mechanism inherent in having natural selection be the creative force. Modern Christian viewpoints range from rejecting both descent with modification (the pattern) and the mechanism of natural selection (the process), to accepting descent with modification but not the theory of natural selection, to those claiming natural selection as God's way of creating things. (See evolution and religion below.)

The development of modern theories of evolution began with the introduction of the concept of natural selection in a joint 1858 paper by Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace, and the publication of Darwin's 1859 book, The Origin of Species. Darwin and Wallace proposed that evolution occurs because a heritable trait that increases an individual's chance of successfully reproducing will become more common, by inheritance, from one generation to the next, and likewise a heritable trait that decreases an individual's chance of reproducing will become rarer. In the 1930s, scientists combined Darwinian natural selection with the re-discovered theory of Mendelian heredity to create the modern synthesis, which is the prevailing paradigm of evolutionary theory.

As broadly and commonly defined in the scientific community, the term evolution connotes heritable changes in populations of organisms over time, or changes in the frequencies of alleles over time. A popular definition along these lines is that offered by Douglas J. Futuyma (1986) in Evolutionary Biology: "Biological evolutionis change in the properties of populations of organisms that transcend the lifetime of a single individual. The changes in populations that are considered evolutionary are those that are inheritable via the genetic material from one generation to another." In this sense, the term does not specify any overall pattern of change through the ages, nor the process whereby change occurs (although the term is also employed in such a manner).

However, there are two very important and popular evolutionary theories that address the pattern and process of evolution: "theory of descent with modification" and "theory of natural selection," respectively, as well as other concepts in evolutionary theory that deal with speciation and the rate of evolution.

The "theory of descent with modification" is the major kinematic theory that deals with the pattern of evolutionthat is, it treats non-causal relations between ancestral and descendant species, orders, phyla, and so forth. The theory of descent with modification, also called the "theory of common descent," essentially postulates that all organisms have descended from common ancestors by a continuous process of branching. In other words, narrowly defined, all life evolved from one kind of organism or from a few simple kinds, and each species arose in a single geographic location from another species that preceded it in time. Each group of organisms shares a common ancestor. In the broadest sense of the terminology, the theory of descent with modification simply states that more recent forms result from modification of earlier forms.

One of the major contributions of Charles Darwin was to marshal substantial evidence for the theory of descent with modification, particularly in his book, Origin of Species. Among the evidences that evolutionists use to document the "pattern of evolution" are the fossil record, the distribution patterns of existing species, methods of dating fossils, and comparison of homologous structures. (See evidences of evolution below.)

Main articles: Darwinism and Natural selection

The second major evolutionary theory is the "theory of modification through natural selection," also known as the "theory of natural selection." This is a dynamic theory that involves mechanisms and causal relationships. The theory of natural selection is one explanation offered for how evolution might have occurred; in other words, the "process" by which evolution took place to arrive at the pattern.

The term natural selection may be defined as the mechanism whereby biological individuals that are endowed with favorable or deleterious traits reproduce more or less than other individuals that do not possess such traits. Natural selection generally is defined independently of whether or not there is actually an effect on the gene-frequency of a population. That is, it is limited to the selection process itself, whereby individuals in a population experience differential survival and reproduction based on a particular phenotypic variation(s).

The theory of evolution by natural selection is the comprehensive proposal involving both heritable genetic variations in a population and the mechanism of natural selection that acts on these variations, such that individuals with greater fitness are more likely to contribute offspring to the next generation, while individuals with lesser fitness are more likely to die early or fail to reproduce. As a result, genotypes with greater fitness become more abundant in the next generation, while genotypes with a lesser fitness become rarer. This theory encompasses both minor changes in gene frequency in populations, brought about by the creative force of natural selection, and major evolutionary changes brought about through natural selection, such as the origin of new designs. For Darwin, however, the term natural selection generally was used synonymously with evolution by natural selection.

In the theory of natural selection as currently conceived, there is both a chance component and a non-random component. Genetic variation is seen as developing randomly, by chance, such as through mutations or genetic recombination. Mayr (2002) states that the production of genetic variation "is almost exclusively a chance phenomena." In every generation, new mutations and recombinations arise spontaneously, producing a new spectrum of phenotypes for natural selectiona non-random selective force (Mayr 2002)to act upon. However, Mayr (2002) also notes that chance plays an important role even in "the process of the elimination of less fit individuals," and particularly during periods of mass extinction. Thus, chance (stochastic processes, randomness) also plays a major role in the theory of natural selection.

According to the theory of natural selection, natural selection is the directing or creative force of evolution. Natural selection is considered far more than just a minor force for weeding out unfit organisms. Even Paley and other natural theologians accepted natural selection, albeit as a mechanism for removing unfit organisms, rather than as a directive force for creating new species and new designs.

Concrete evidence for the theory of modification by natural selection is limited to microevolutionthat is, evolution at or below the level of species. The evidence that natural selection directs changes on the macroevolutionary levelsuch as the major transitions between higher taxa and the origination of new designsnecessarily involves extrapolation from these evidences on the microevolutionary level. The validity of making such extrapolations has recently been challenged by some prominent evolutionists.

The theory of natural selection received a much more contentious response than did the theory of descent with modification. One of Darwin's chief purposes in publishing the Origin of Species was to show that natural selection had been the chief agent of the changes presented in the theory of descent with modification. While the theory of descent with modification was accepted by the scientific community soon after its introduction, the theory of natural selection took until the mid-1900s to be accepted. However, even today, this theory remains controversial, with detractors in both the scientific and religious communities.

Main articles: Speciation and Species

The concepts of speciation and extinction are important to any understanding of evolutionary theory.

Speciation is the term that refers to creation of new and distinct biological species by branching off from the ancestral population. Various mechanisms have been presented whereby a single evolutionary lineage splits into two or more genetically independent lineages. For example, allopatric speciation is held to occur in populations that become isolated geographically, such as by habitat fragmentation or migration. Sympatric speciation is held to occur when new species emerge in the same geographic area. Ernst Mayr's peripatric speciation is a proposal for a type of speciation that exists in between the extremes of allopatry and sympatry, where zones of differentiating species abut but do not overlap.

Extinction is the disappearance of species (i.e. gene pools). The moment of extinction generally occurs at the death of the last individual of that species. Extinction is not an unusual event in geological time. The Permian-Triassic extinction event was the Earth's most severe extinction event, rendering extinct 90 percent of all marine species and 70 percent of terrestrial vertebrate species. In the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event, many forms of life perished (including approximately 50 percent of all genera), the most often mentioned among them being the extinction of the dinosaurs.

One of the unheralded laws of evolutionary theory is that macroevolutionary changes are irreversiblelineages do not return to their ancestral form, even when they return to the ancestral way of life.

Main article: Punctuated equilibrium

The concept of gradualism has often been linked with evolutionary thought. Gradualism is a view of descent with modification as proceeding by means of slow accumulation of very small changes, with the evolving population passing through all the intermediate stagessort of a "march of frequency distributions" through time (Luria, Gould, and Singer 1981).

Darwin himself insisted that evolution was entirely gradual. Indeed, he stated in the Origin of Species:

The Darwinian and Neo-Darwinian emphasis on gradualism has been subject to re-examination on several levels: the levels of major evolutionary trends, origin of new designs, and models of speciation.

Punctuated equilibrium. A common misconception about evolution is that the development of new species generally requires millions of years. Indeed, the gradualist view that speciation involved a slow, steady, progressive transformation of an ancestral population into a new species has dominated much of evolutionary thought from the time of Darwin. Such a transformation was commonly viewed as involving large numbers of individuals ("usually the entire ancestral population"), being "even and slow," and occurring "over all or a large part of the ancestral species' geographic range" (Eldredge & Gould 1972). This concept was applied to the development of a new species by either phyletic evolution (where the descendant species arises by the transformation of the entire ancestral population) or by speciation (where the descendant species branches off from the ancestral population).

However, paleontologists now recognize that the fossil record does not generally yield the expected sequence of slightly altered intermediary forms, but instead the sudden appearance of species, and long periods when species do not change much.

The theory of punctuated equilibrium ascribes that the fossil record accurately reflects evolutionary change. That is, it posits that macroevolutionary patterns of species are typically ones of morphological stability during their existence (stasis), and that most evolutionary change is concentrated in events of speciationwith the origin of a new species usually occurring during geologically short periods of time when the long-term stasis of a population is punctuated by this rare and rapid speciation event. The sudden transitions between species are sometimes measured on the order of hundreds or thousands of years relative to their millions of years of existence. Although the theory of punctuated equilibrium originally generated a lot of controversy, it is now viewed highly favorably in the scientific community, and has even become a part of recent textbook orthodoxy.

Note that the theory of punctuated equilibrium merely addresses the pattern of evolution and is not tied to any one mode of speciation. Although occurring in a brief period of time, the species formation can go through all the stages, or can proceed by leaps. It is even neutral with respect to natural selection.

Punctuated origin of new designs. According to the gradualist viewpoint, the origin of novel features, such as feathers in birds and jaws in fish, can be explained as having arisen from numerous, tiny, imperceptible steps, with each step being advantageous and developed by natural selection. Darwin's proposed such a resolution for the origin of the vertebrate eye.

However, there are some structures for which it is difficult to conceive how such structures could be useful in incipient stages, and thus have selective advantage. One way in which evolutionary theory has dealt with such criticisms is the concept of "preadaptation," proposing that the intermediate stage may perform useful functions different from the final stage. Incipient feathers may have been used for retaining body warmth or catching insects, for example, prior to the development of a fully functional wing.

Another solution for origin of new designs, which is gaining renewed attention among evolutionists, is that the full sequence of intermediate forms may not have existed at all, and instead key features may have developed by rapid transitions, discontinuously. This view of a punctuational origin of key features arose because of: (1) the persistent problem of the lack of fossil evidence for intermediate stages between major designs, with transitions between major groups being characteristically abrupt; and (2) the inability to conceive of functional intermediates in select cases. In the later case, prominent evolutionist Stephen Jay Gould (1980b) cites the fur-lined pouches of pocket gophers and the maxillary bone of the upper jaw of certain genera of boid snakes being split into front and rear halves: "How can a jawbone be half broken? What good is an incipient groove or furrow on the outside? Did such hypothetical ancestors run about three-legged while holding a few scraps of food in an imperfect crease with their fourth leg?"

The concept of punctuational origin is not necessarily opposed to natural selection as the creative force. For example, the rapid transition could be the product of a very small genetic change, even one mutation occurring by chance in a key gene, which is then acted upon by natural selection. However, the concept of a punctuational origin of new designs (as with punctuational equilibrium), is also viewed favorably by those advocating divine creation, due to the alignment of this view with the concept of discontinuous variation being the product of divine input, with natural selection simply the weeding out of previous, less well-adapted forms.

Punctuational models of speciation. Punctuational models of speciation are being advanced in contrast with what is sometimes labeled the "allopatric orthodoxy" (Gould 1980a; Gould and Eldredge 1977). Allopatric orthodoxy is a process of species origin involving geographic isolation, whereby a population completely separates geographically from a large parental population and develops gradually into a new species by natural selection until their differences are so great that reproductive isolation ensues. Reproductive isolation is therefore a secondary byproduct of geographic isolation, with the process involving gradual allelic substitution. Contrasted with this view are recent punctuational models for speciation, which postulate that reproductive isolation can rise rapidly, not through gradual selection, but without selective significance. In such models, reproductive isolation originates before adaptive, phenotypic differences are acquired. Selection does not play a creative role in initiating speciation, nor in the definitive aspect of reproductive isolation, although it is usually postulated as the important factor in building subsequent adaptation. One example of this is polyploidy, where there is a multiplication of the number of chromosomes beyond the normal diploid number. Another model is chromosomal speciation, involving large changes in chromosomes due to various genetic accidents.

Main articles: Darwinism and Neo-Darwinism

Darwinism is a term generally synonymous with the theory of natural selection. Harvard evolutionist Stephen Jay Gould (1982) maintains: "Although 'Darwinism' has often been equated with evolution itself in popular literature, the term should be restricted to the body of thought allied with Darwin's own theory of mechanism [natural selection]. Although the term has been used in various ways depending on who is using it and the time period (Mayr 1991), Gould nonetheless finds a general agreement in the scientific community that "Darwinism should be restricted to the world view encompassed by the theory of natural selection itself."

The term neo-Darwinism is a very different concept. It is considered synonymous with the term "modern synthesis" or "modern evolutionary synthesis." The modern synthesis is the most significant, overall development in evolutionary thought since the time of Darwin, and is the prevailing paradigm of evolutionary biology. The modern synthesis melded the two major theories of classical Darwinism (theory of descent with modification and the theory of natural selection) with the rediscovered Mendelian genetics, recasting Darwin's ideas in terms of changes in allele frequency.

In essence, advances in genetics pioneered by Gregor Mendel led to a sophisticated concept of the basis of variation and the mechanisms of inheritance. Gregor Mendel proposed a gene-based theory of inheritance, describing the elements responsible for heritable traits as the fundamental units now called genes and laying out a mathematical framework for the segregation and inheritance of variants of a gene, which are now referred to as alleles. Later research identified the molecule DNA as the genetic material through which traits are passed from parent to offspring, and identified genes as discrete elements within DNA. Though largely maintained within organisms, DNA is both variable across individuals and subject to a process of change or mutation.

According to the modern synthesis, the ultimate source of all genetic variation is mutations. They are permanent, transmissible changes to the genetic material (usually DNA or RNA) of a cell, and can be caused by "copying errors" in the genetic material during cell division and by exposure to radiation, chemicals, or viruses.

In addition to passing genetic material from parent to offspring, nearly all organisms employ sexual reproduction to exchange genetic material. This, combined with meiotic recombination, allows genetic variation to be propagated through an interbreeding population.

According to the modern synthesis, natural selection acts on the genes, through their expression (phenotypes). Natural selection can be subdivided into two categories:

Through the process of natural selection, species become better adapted to their environments. Note that, whereas mutations (and genetic drift) are random, natural selection is not, as it preferentially selects for different mutations based on differential fitness.

In recent years, there have been many challenges to the modern synthesis, to the point where Bowler (1988), a historian of evolutionary thought, states; "In the last decade or so it has become obvious that there is no longer a universal consensus in favor of the synthetic theory even within the ranks of working biologists." Gould (1980a) likewise notes "that theory, as a general proposition is effectively dead." These challenges include models of punctuational change, the theory of neutralism, and selection at levels above the individual. What some historians and philosophers of evolutionary thought see as challenges to the modern synthesis, others see as either erroneous theories or as theories that can be included within the umbrella of the modern synthesis.

Main article: Evidence of evolution

For the broad concept of evolution ("any heritable change in a population of organisms over time"), evidences of evolution are readily apparent. Evidences include observed changes in domestic crops (creating a variety of corn with greater resistance to disease), bacterial strains (development of strains with resistance to antibiotics), laboratory animals (structural changes in fruit flies), and flora and fauna in the wild (color change in particular populations of peppered moths and polyploidy in plants).

Generally, however, the "evidences of evolution" being presented by scientists or textbook authors are for either (1) the theory of descent with modification; or (2) a comprehensive concept including both the theory of descent with modification and the theory of natural selection. In actuality, most of these evidences that have been catalogued are for the theory of descent with modification.

In the Origin of Species, Darwin marshaled many evidences for the theory of descent with modification, within such areas as paleontology, biogeography, morphology, and embryology. Many of these areas continue to provide the most convincing proofs of descent with modification even today (Mayr 1982; Mayr 2001). Supplementing these areas, are molecular evidences.

It is noteworthy that some of the best support for the theory of descent with modification comes from the observation of imperfections of nature, rather than perfect adaptations. As noted by Gould (1983):

All of the classical arguments for evolution are fundamentally arguments for imperfections that reflect history. They fit the pattern of observing that the leg of Reptile B is not the best for walking, because it evolved from Fish A. In other words, why would a rat run, a bat fly, a porpoise swim and a man type all with the same structures utilizing the same bones unless inherited from a common ancestor?

Fossil evidence of prehistoric organisms has been found all over the Earth. Fossils are traces of once living organisms. Fossilization on an organism is an uncommon occurrence, usually requiring hard parts (like bone) and death where sediments or volcanic ash may be deposited. Fossil evidence of organisms without hard body parts, such as shell, bone, teeth, and wood stems, is sparse, but exists in the form of ancient microfossils and the fossilization of ancient burrows and a few soft-bodied organisms. Some insects have been preserved in resin. The age of fossils can often be deduced from the geologic context in which they are found (the strata); and their age also can be determined with radiometric dating.

The comparison of fossils of extinct organisms in older geological strata with fossils found in more recent strata or with living organisms is considered strong evidence of descent with modification. Fossils found in more recent strata are often very similar to, or indistinguishable from living species, whereas the older the fossils the more different they are from living organisms or recent fossils. In addition, fossil evidence reveals that species of greater complexity have appeared on the earth over time, beginning in the Precambrian era some 600 millions of years ago with the first eukaryotes. The fossil records support the view that there is orderly progression in which each stage emerges from, or builds upon, preceding stages.

One of the problems with fossil evidence is the general lack of gradually sequenced intermediary forms. There are some fossil lineages that appear quite well-represented, such as from therapsid reptiles to the mammals, and between what is considered land-living ancestors of the whales and their ocean-living descendants. The transition from an ancestral horse (Eohippus) and the modern horse (Equus) is also significant, and Archaeopteryx has been postulated as fitting the gap between reptiles and birds. But generally, paleontologists do not find a steady change from ancestral forms to descendant forms, but rather discontinuities, or gaps in most every phyletic series. This has been explained both by the incompleteness of the fossil record and by proposals of speciation that involve short periods of time, rather than millions of years. (Notably, there are also gaps between living organisms, with a lack of intermediaries between whales and terrestrial mammals, between reptiles and birds, and between flowering plants and their closest relatives.) Archaeopteryx has recently come under criticism as a transitional fossil between reptiles and birds (Wells 2000).

The fact that the fossil evidence supports the view that species tend to remain stable throughout their existence and that new species appear suddenly is not problematic for the theory of descent with modification, but only with Darwin's concept of gradualism.

The study of comparative anatomy also yields evidence for the theory of descent with modification. For one, there are structures in diverse species that have similar internal organization yet perform different functions. Vertebrate limbs are a common example of such homologous structures. Bat wings, for example, are very similar to human hands. Also similar are the forelimbs of the penguin, the porpoise, the rat, and the alligator. In addition, these features derive from the same structures in the embryo stage. As queried earlier, why would a rat run, a bat fly, a porpoise swim and a man type all with limbs using the same bone structure if not coming from a common ancestor, since these are surely not the most ideal structures for each use (Gould 1983).

Likewise, a structure may exist with little or no purpose in one organism, yet the same structure has a clear purpose in other species. These features are called vestigial organs or vestigial characters. The human wisdom teeth and appendix are common examples. Likewise, some snakes have pelvic bones and limb bones, and some blind salamanders and blind cave fish have eyes. Such features would be the prediction of the theory of descent with modification, suggesting that they share a common ancestry with organisms that have the same structure, but which is functional.

For the point of view of classification, it can be observed that various species exhibit a sense of "relatedness," such as various catlike mammals can be put in the same family (Felidae), dog-like mammals in the same family (Canidae), and bears in the same family (Ursidae), and so forth, and then these and other similar mammals can be combined into the same order (Carnivora). This sense of relatedness, from external features, fits the expectations of the theory of descent with modification.

Phylogeny, the study of the ancestry (pattern and history) of organisms, yields a phylogenetic tree to show such relatedness (or a cladogram in other taxonomic disciplines).

A common evidence for evolution is the assertion that the embryos of related animals are often quite similar to each other, often much more similar than the adult forms. For example, it is held that the development of the human embryo is compatible to comparable stages of other kinds of vertebrates (fish, salamander, tortoise, chicken, pig, cow, and rabbit). Furthermore, mammals such as cows and rabbits are more similar in embryological development than with alligators. Often, the drawings of early vertebrate embryos by Ernst Haeckel are offered as proof.

It has further been asserted that features, such as the gill pouches in the mammalian embryo resemble those of fish, are most readily explained as being remnants from the ancestral fish, which were not eliminated because they are embryonic "organizers" for the next step of development.

Wells (2000) has criticized embryological evidence on several points. For one, it is now known that Ernst Haeckel exaggerated the similarities of vertebrate embryos at the midpoint of embryological development, and omitted the earlier embryological stages when differences were more pronounced. Also, embryological development in some frog species looks very similar to that of birds, rather than other frog species. Remarkably, even as revered an evolutionist as Ernst Mayr, in his 2001 text What Evolution Is, used Haeckel drawings from 1870, which he knew were faked, noting "Haeckel (sp.) had fraudulently substituted dog embryos for the human ones, but they were so similar to humans that these (if available) would have made the same point."

The geographic distribution of plants and animals offers another commonly cited evidence for evolution (common descent). The fauna on Australia, with its large marsupials, is very different from that of the other continents. The fauna on Africa and South America are very different, but the fauna of Europe and North America, which were connected more recently, are similar. There are few mammals on oceanic islands. These findings support the theory of descent with modification, which holds that the present distribution of flora and fauna would be related to their common origins and subsequent distribution. The longer the separation of continents, such as with Australia's long isolation, the greater the expected divergence is.

Renowned evolutionist Mayr (1982) contends that "the facts of biogeography posed some of the most insoluble dilemmas for the creationists and were eventually used by Darwin as his most convincing evidence in favor of evolution."

Evidence for common descent may be found in traits shared between all living organisms. In Darwin's day, the evidence of shared traits was based solely on visible observation of morphologic similarities, such as the fact that all birdseven those which do not flyhave wings. Today, the theory of common descent is supported by genetic similarities. For example, every living cell makes use of nucleic acids as its genetic material, and uses the same twenty amino acids as the building blocks for proteins. All organisms use the same genetic code (with some extremely rare and minor deviations) to translate nucleic acid sequences into proteins. The universality of these traits strongly suggests common ancestry, because the selection of these traits seems somewhat arbitrary.

Similarly, the metabolism of very different organisms is based on the same biochemistry. For example, the protein cytochrome c, which is needed for aerobic respiration, is universally shared in aerobic organisms, suggesting a common ancestor that used this protein. There are also variations in the amino acid sequence of cytochrome c, with the more similar molecules found in organisms that appear more related (monkeys and cattle) than between those that seem less related (monkeys and fish). The cytochrome c of chimpanzees is the same as that of humans, but very different from bread mold. Similar results have been found with blood proteins.

Other uniformity is seen in the universality of mitosis in all cellular organisms, the similarity of meiosis in all sexually reproducing organisms, the use of ATP by all organisms for energy transfer, and the fact that almost all plants use the same chlorophyll molecule for photosynthesis.

The closer that organisms appear to be related, the more similar are their respective genetic sequences. That is, comparison of the genetic sequence of organisms reveals that phylogenetically close organisms have a higher degree of sequence similarity than organisms that are phylogenetically distant. For example, neutral human DNA sequences are approximately 1.2 percent divergent (based on substitutions) from those of their nearest genetic relative, the chimpanzee, 1.6 percent from gorillas, and 6.6 percent from baboons. Sequence comparison is considered a measure robust enough to be used to correct erroneous assumptions in the phylogenetic tree in instances where other evidence is scarce.

Comparative studies also show that some basic genes of higher organisms are shared with homologous genes in bacteria.

Concrete evidence for the theory of modification by natural selection is limited to the microevolutionary levelthat is, events and processes at or below the level of species. As examples of such evidences, plant and animal breeders use artificial selection to produce different varieties of plants and strains of fish. Natural selection is seen in the changes of the shade of gray of populations of peppered moths (Biston betularia) observed in England.

Another example involves the hawthorn fly, Rhagoletis pomonella. Different populations of hawthorn fly feed on different fruits. A new population spontaneously emerged in North America in the nineteenth century sometime after apples, a non-native species, were introduced. The apple-feeding population normally feeds only on apples and not on the historically preferred fruit of hawthorns. Likewise the current hawthorn feeding population does not normally feed on apples. A current area of scientific research is the investigation of whether or not the apple-feeding race may further evolve into a new species. Some evidence, such as the fact that six out of thirteen alozyme loci are different, that hawthorn flies mature later in the season, and take longer to mature than apple flies, and that there is little evidence of interbreeding (researchers have documented a 4 to 6 percent hybridization rate) suggests this possibility (see Berlocher and Bush 1982; Berlocher and Feder 2002; Bush 1969; McPheron, Smith, and Berlocher 1988; Prokopy, Diehl, and Cooley 1988; Smith 1988).

The evidence that natural selection directs the major transitions between species and originates new designs (macroevolution) involves extrapolation from these evidences on the microevolutionary level. That is, it is inferred that if moths can change their color in 50 years, then new designs or entire new genera can originate over millions of years. If geneticists see population changes for fruit flies in laboratory bottles, then given eons of time, birds can be built from reptiles and fish with jaws from jawless ancestors.

However, at question has always been the sufficiency of extrapolation to the macroevolutionary level. As Mayr (2001) notes, "from Darwin's day to the present, there has been a heated controversy over whether macroevolution is nothing but an unbroken continuation of microevolution, as Darwin and his followers have claimed, or rather is disconnected from microevolution."

Textbook authors have often confused the dialogue on evolution by treating the term as if it signified one unified wholenot only descent with modification, but also the specific Darwinian and neo-Darwinian theories regarding natural selection, gradualism, speciation, and so forth. Certain textbook authors, in particular, have exacerbated this terminological confusion by lumping "evidences of evolution" into a section placed immediately after a comprehensive presentation on Darwin's overall theorythereby creating the misleading impression that the evidences are supporting all components of Darwin's theory, including natural selection (Swarts et al. 1994). In reality, the confirming information is invariably limited to the phenomenon of evolution having occurred (descent from a common ancestor or change of gene frequencies in populations), or perhaps including evidence of natural selection within populations.

"Evolution" has been referred to both as a "fact" and as a "theory."

In scientific terminology, a theory is a model of the world (or some portion of it) from which falsifiable hypotheses can be generated and tested through controlled experiments, or be verified through empirical observation. "Facts" are parts of the world, or claims about the world, that are real or true regardless of what people think. Facts, as data or things that are done or exist, are parts of theoriesthey are things, or relationships between things, that theories take for granted in order to make predictions, or that theories predict. For example, it is a "fact" that an apple dropped on earth will fall towards the center of the planet in a straight line, and the "theory" that explains it is the current theory of gravitation.

In common usage, people use the word "theory" to signify "conjecture," "speculation," or "opinion." In this popular sense, "theories" are opposed to "facts." Thus, it is not uncommon for those opposed to evolution to state that it is just a theory, not a fact, implying that it is mere speculation. But for scientists, "theory" and "fact" do not stand in opposition, but rather exist in a reciprocal relationship.

Scientists sometimes refer to evolution as both a "fact" and a "theory."

In the broader usage of the term, calling evolution a "fact" references the confidence that scientists have that populations of organisms can change over time. In this sense, evolution occurs whenever a new strain of bacterium evolves that is resistant to antibodies that had been lethal to prior strains. Many evolutionists also call evolution a "fact" when they are referring to the theory of descent with modification, because of the substantial evidences that they perceive as having been marshaled for this theory. In this later sense, Mayr (2001) opines: "It is now actually misleading to refer to evolution as a theory, considering the massive evidence that has been discovered over the past 140 years documenting its existence. Evolution is no longer a theory, it is simply a fact."

When "evolution" is referred to as a theory by evolutionists, the reference is generally to an explanation for why and how evolution occurs (such as a theory of speciation or the theory of natural selection).

Symbiogenesis is evolutionary change initiated by a long-term symbiosis of dissimilar organisms. Margulis and Sagan (2002) hold that random mutation is greatly overemphasized as the source of hereditary variation in standard Neo-Darwinistic doctrine. Rather, they maintain, the major source of transmitted variation actually comes from the acquisition of genomesin other words, entire sets of genes, in the form of whole organisms, are acquired and incorporated by other organisms. This long-term biological fusion of organisms, beginning as symbiosis, is held to be the agent of species evolution.

For example, lichens are a composite organism composed of a fungus and a photosynthetic partner (usually either green algae or cyanobacteria, but in some cases yellow-green algae, brown algae, or both green algae and cyanobacteria). These intertwined organisms act as a unit that is distinct from its component parts. Lichens are considered to have arisen by symbiogenesis, involving acquisitions of cyanobacterial or algal genomes.

Another example is the photosynthetic animals or plant-animal hybrids in the form of slugs (shell-less mollusks) that have green algae in their tissues (such as Elysia viridis). These slugs are always green, never need to eat throughout their adult life, and are "permanently and discontinuously different from their gray, algae-eating ancestors" (Margulis and Sagan 2002). This is held to be another example of a symbiosis that lead to symbiogenesis.

Yet another example is cattle, which are able to digest cellulose in grass because of microbial symbionts in their rumen. Cattle cannot survive without such an association. Other examples of evolution resulting through merger of dissimilar organisms include associations of modern (scleractinian) coral and dinomastigotes (such as Gymnodinium microadriaticum) and the formation of new species and genera of flowering plants when when the leaves of these plants integrated a bacterial genome.

The formation of eukaryotes is postulated to have occurred through a symbiotic relationship between prokaryotes, a theory called endosymbiosis. According to this theory, mitochondria, chloroplasts, flagella, and even the cell nucleus would have arisen from prokaryote bacteria that gave up their independence for the protective and nutritive environment within a host organism.

Margulis and Sagan (2002) state that the formation of new species by inheritance of acquired microbes is best documented in protists. They conclude that "details abound that support the concept that all visible organisms, plants, animals, and fungi evolved by "body fusion."

The conventional paradigm of the theory of descent with modification presumes that the history of life maps as the "tree of life," a tree beginning with the trunk as one universal common ancestor and then progressively branching, with modern species at the twig ends. However, that clean and simple pattern is being called into question due to discoveries being made by sequencing genomes of specific organisms. Instead of being simple at its base, the tree of life is looking considerably more complex. At the level of single cells, before the emergence of multicellular organisms, the genomic signs point not to a single line of development, but rather to a bush or a network as diverse microbes at times exchange their genetic material, especially through the process of lateral gene transfer.

Other complicating factors are proposed based on the relatively sudden appearance of phyla during the Cambrian explosion and on evidence that animals may have originated more than once and in different places at different times (Whittington 1985; Gordon 1999; Woese 1998; Wells 2000).

The current paradigm of the theory of natural selection is that the process has a major stochastic (random) element, with heritable variation arising through chance, and then being acted upon by the largely non-random force of natural selection made manifest as various species compete for limited resources. An alternative view is that the introduced variation is non-random.

In particular, various theistic perspectives see directed variation, from a Supreme Being, as the creative force of evolution. Natural selection, rather than being the creative force of evolution, may be variously viewed as a force for advancement of the new variation or may be considered largely inconsequential. Some role may also be accorded differential selection, such as mass extinctions. This view sees the evolutionary process as progressive, non-materialistic, and purposeful.

Neither of these contrasted worldviewsrandom variation and the purposeless, non-progressive role of natural selection, or purposeful, progressive variationare conclusively proved or unproved by scientific methodology, and both are theoretically possible.

The appearance of life on earth (see origin of life) is not a part of biological evolution.

Not much is known about the earliest developments in life. However, all existing organisms share certain traits, including cellular structure and genetic code. Most scientists interpret this to mean all existing organisms share a common ancestor that had already developed the most fundamental cellular processes. There is no scientific consensus on the relationship of the three domains of life (Archea, Bacteria, Eukaryota) or the origin of life.

The emergence of oxygenic photosynthesis (around 3 billion years ago) and the subsequent emergence of an oxygen-rich, non-reducing atmosphere can be traced through the formation of banded iron deposits, and later red beds of iron oxides. This was a necessary prerequisite for the development of aerobic cellular respiration, believed to have emerged around 2 billion years ago.

In the last billion years, simple multicellular plants and animals began to appear in the oceans. Soon after the emergence of the first animals, the Cambrian explosion (a period of unrivaled and remarkable, but brief, organismal diversity documented in the fossils found at the Burgess Shale) saw the creation of all the major body plans, or phyla, of modern animals. About 500 million years ago, plants and fungi colonized the land, and were soon followed by arthropods and other animals, leading to the development of the land ecosystems of today.

Utilizing the fossil record, scientists have constructed geological timetables, or geological time scales to offer a picture of the history of life on earth, organized by presenting the type of plant and animal life according to the time of appearance (often listed in terms of era, period, epoch, and years). This timetable, for example, locates the first bacteria and the first algae in the Precambrian era, over 1 billion years ago, the first marine invertebrates in the Cambrian period of the Paleozoic era (some 580 million years ago), early mammals in the Triassic period of the Mesozoic era, the first flowering plants in the Cretaceous period of the Mesozoic era, and the development of early hominids in the Pliocene epoch of the Tertiary period of the Cenozoic era, and so forth.

One of the great puzzles in biology is the sudden appearance of most body plans of animals during the early Cambrian period and why there have been no major new structural types in the subsequent 500 million years (Mayr 2001).

Scientists also strive to show lineages, from ancestral to descendant organisms. There are numerous evidences that are used in constructing this more defined history of life, with the best known being the fossil record, but also utilizing the comparative anatomy of present-day plants and animals. By comparing the anatomies of both modern and extinct species, biologists attempt to reconstruct the lineages of those species. Transitional fossils have been proposed to picture continuity between two different lineages. For instance, the connection between dinosaurs and birds has been proposed by way of so-called "transitional" species such as Archaeopteryx.

The development of genetics also has allowed biologists to investigate the genetic record of the history of life as well. Although we cannot obtain the DNA sequences of most extinct species, the degree of similarity and difference among modern species allows geneticists to reconstruct lineages. It is from genetic comparisons that claims such as the 98 to 99 percent similarity between humans and chimpanzees come from, for instance.

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Evolution - New World Encyclopedia

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