Tag Archives: oneness

Please Do Talk to Strangers


In 1989, I moved to San Francisco. For three months I was in bliss – the beautiful bay, progressive and conscious people, great restaurants, and so much more. Then an earthquake, the magnitude of which had not been experienced since 1906, rocked the Bay Area. The first night, driving home from work, the city that normally was all lit up, was nearly completely dark.

The next day, people wandered the streets, most looking somewhat dazed and in shock. There were no strangers that day. Everyone I encountered spoke to one another, sharing news and sharing where they were when the quake hit. People set up random stations where they cooked food for those who were displaced from their homes.

Philosopher Ernest Holmes wrote in his book, Science of Mind, “Think of the whole world as your friend.”

There were no strangers that day. Suddenly, this booming city was transformed into a small, close-knit community.

As I recently walked through Denver, my current city of residence, I noticed how everyone was rushing by one another, seemingly unaware of their interconnectedness with everyone else. Mind you, Denver is in fact one of the friendliest cities in which I’ve lived.

This day, however, I was reminded of the day San Francisco was transformed into the land where there were no strangers. I pondered how it took a natural disaster to awaken us to how important we are to each other.

The invitation this day is to really see your fellow travelers on the planet, to remember our interconnectedness, and perhaps to actually talk to a stranger. As twentieth century Irish poet, W.B. Yeats, said, “There are no strangers, only friends you haven’t met yet.” Have fun with your new friends!

Enjoy the journey.

Gregory Toole offers spiritual coaching to individuals and groups who want to create and live extraordinary lives. For more information, go to gregorytoole.com.

Where’s the Perfection in Tragedy?


A friend recently asked me, where is the perfection in this recent tragedy in Orlando, Florida? My response was that any words that would try to explain divine perfection in that situation would just be platitudes, and there are no words that could describe divine perfection there.

When we relinquish the idea of an all-controlling God who controls all the affairs of humans, with that we accept that all manner of events will take place that represent where each one of us is, and where all of us are collectively, in our embodiment and expression of our divine nature, which is perfection.

Our nature is perfection. Our nature is love. Yet, because we are all free and have choice, it is up to each one of us to recognize our divinity and the divinity of all others. In the meantime, some will continue to engage in wars and other violent acts, and we will all be affected by that on some level.

Acts like the recent mass shooting in Orlando do not call us to trust less, nor to become more fearful, nor cynical. They call us to love more, to extend ourselves more in caring and compassion for others, and to stand even more clearly in the vision of a world that works for everyone.

It is the consciousness of love and wholeness that heals. If the world is to receive healing, it will happen through more love, and expanded consciousness of wholeness and oneness.

In tragedy that is perpetuated by another human being, our human tendency is to go into separation, to look for how the person who committed the violent acts is different from us, and to look at how to protect ourselves from “them” and those like them.

The greater calling is to do the opposite, to see it as a call to bring even more people into our sense of oneness, to love even more, to connect even more with those who seem different than us.

According to the John P. Hussman Institute for Human Genomics, the differences in human beings of all ethnicities and races is defined by less than 0.1% of our DNA. In other words, for all human beings we share 99.9% of the same DNA. This should be a clue as to our oneness and how much more we have in common than differences.

For anyone who has traveled or really gotten to know people of different cultures, we can see that all of us human beings are fundamentally similar. It is ignorance and a sense of separateness that cause us to begin weaving wild stories about the “other” and their culture, and often this occurs in both directions to the point that animosity and fear continue to grow. It is these mythical stories that allow us to do harm to one another. Without them, it is unlikely for a healthy mind to commit acts of violence against others.

My friends, let’s not fall for any story that would have us believe that others are so different from us. Let’s find out first hand by listening deeply with an open mind and heart. We can honor and respect differences and be genuinely interested in learning about other people’s cultures and religions and, not only does it enrich our lives, but it also creates the possibility for world peace as each person fundamentally wants to be seen, honored, and respected for who they are.

My friends, we are truly all one. The call this day is to see, honor, love, and respect all of God’s children. Let us approach others with genuine interest and curiosity rather than fear. Let’s wear our hearts on our sleeves and let everyone know how deeply they are loved by God through us.

Enjoy the journey.

Gregory Toole offers spiritual coaching to individuals and groups who want to create and live extraordinary lives. For more information, go to gregorytoole.com.

One Human Family


The word family conjures up a range of emotions and thoughts, usually linked to our family of origin. Some of us have had especially loving experiences in families, while others have had horrific experiences, and most of us have had a mixed bag of love and good intentions, along with some degree of dysfunction.

The Merriam-Webster online dictionary definition of family is quite benign:

1 : a social group made up of parents and their children. 2 : a group of people who come from the same ancestor. 3 : a group of people living together : household.

To most of us, the word family is not benign at all, but perhaps what this dictionary definition gives us is an opportunity to define for ourselves what family is, beyond the facts of having some common DNA or a shared residence at some point.

What’s missing from the dictionary definition is that family is really about loving and caring for one another. This need not be confined to a particular structure, nor does it need to be based in biological connections.

I am inspired to see that family is being redefined in so many ways to meet the diverse needs of individuals and groups. I know many people who have their family of origin, and then they also have their family of choice, who are those people they have consciously come into relationship with to create the function of family in a more meaningful way than what they experience in their family of origin.

Aside from the natural role of family to provide a unit of people who care and look out for one another, family also provides us with the learning and experience to bring this love and caring on a larger level to our one human family. Whatever our family looks like, whether of origin or choice, the potential is great for uplifting our planet as we apply what we learn in family on a much larger scale in our world.

Putting all of our judgments aside, we are ultimately here to love all beings. Our nature is love. Love is a synonym for God. Family is the place where we learn to love and accept each person for who they are, and to keep on loving them with all of their seeming shortcomings and missteps.

Together as a human family we are learning what it is to love and care for one another. We are further learning how to embrace all of our diversity and differences, coming to appreciate our differences rather than feel threatened by them.

In 1993, the United Nations proclaimed May 15 of every year as the International Day of Families. The invitation this week as we approach May 15 on Sunday is to reflect upon and give thanks for the role family has played in your personal evolution as a spiritual being having a human experience. The call is to take some time to deepen your connection to your family (of origin or choice) and then to reflect on how you can bring the loving and caring you bring in family on a larger scale to our one human family.

We would love to hear about any of your family insights or experiences on our Somseva Facebook group page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/somseva/

Enjoy the journey.


Living Without Limits: Manifestation Checklist


As I was encountering some seeming “roadblocks” in manifesting what I wanted in my life recently, I decided to create a manifestation checklist to examine where I could align more completely with spiritual principles.

Science of Mind philosophy founder Ernest Holmes stated, spiritual laws are “exact and exacting.” He also said “Our belief sets the limit to our demonstration of a Principle which, of Itself, is without limit.” The laws or principles of which he spoke are those that govern the spiritual universe, or how things work spiritually. Paying attention to them and aligning with them brings us into our highest expression of who we are.

In examining some core spiritual principles and truths, I developed this simple six-step checklist:

  1. Oneness: Am I living in the awareness and embodiment of my oneness with infinite presence, power, and intelligence?
  2. Mental equivalent: Do my beliefs and the way I am looking at life match and support what I desire to create in my life?
  3. Love: Are my thoughts, intentions, and actions grounded in love, for myself and others?
  4. Gratitude: Am I continuously grateful for all the good that is in my life, including in the area where I am wanting to make a change?
  5. Surrender: Am I steadily surrendering and letting go, allowing room for grace to unfold beyond my own seeming limitations?
  6. Forgiveness: Am I forgiving myself and others freely for perceived mistakes and transgressions?

While this checklist is not exhaustive, if we can answer “yes” to each of these questions we are likely very well on track in creating the fertile ground and opening for what we wish to manifest in our lives.

In my own case recently, it was the very first item on the list that held the greatest opportunity: oneness. This meant coming fully into my body temple in the remembrance that the all-ness of divine presence, power, and intelligence is right at my center, at my core. Further, it involved grounding into my core to feel and experience it all right there. That got me right back on track.

Which step is calling you for more attention? Which one will free you to more powerfully create the life you are envisioning? The invitation today is to choose one item from the list above to deepen your practice. It could just be the one thing that creates the breakthrough you’ve been seeking.

Enjoy the journey.

Experiencing Oneness Moment by Moment

gregory meditating at darleen's 01-22-16

The great yoga teacher, B.K.S. Iyengar described oneness in the most embodied sense I had ever heard. He said that to experience oneness is to feel every cell of our body simultaneously. Similarly, it could be said we experience oneness when we experience every other being as ourselves simultaneously.

Recently, I have been contemplating such a full experience of oneness. The Science of Mind philosophy articulated by Ernest Holmes has oneness as its central tenet. Holmes taught that a sense of separation, the opposite of oneness, was all that ever needed to be healed.

In my current contemplations I have been exploring what oneness looks and feels like moment by moment. The short answer is it feels quite good! It means we see no separation between ourselves, the creator, and all that is created. It means all the good that we desire is contained right within the infiniteness of our own being. So we are never seeking anything from outside, but accepting all good within ourselves.

From a philosophical point of view, this is not radical at all to those in New Thought spiritual circles. However, on an experiential level it is quite radical as most of us still struggle with this or that condition or situation in our worldly lives.

To truly know oneness at an experiential level would be to acknowledge, feel, and experience all situations as the unfolding of divine consciousness right where we are. This is really radical. Most of us would be willing to accept some responsibility for our own conditions, but few would go as far as to embrace the fullness of life as connected and flowing from their own consciousness.

In oneness, by definition, we are not separate from anything or anyone. The good news is that, when in the full experience of oneness, we no longer need to be in doubt or fear. We can know that we are crafting our experience of life through calling forth that which we already possess within ourselves.

One of my favorite spiritual writers, Joel Goldsmith, said we must allow infinity to flow out from us. Whether it be prosperity, friendship, relationship, wellness in the physical body, or anything else, the answer is always the same – tap into the reservoir of divine substance within ourselves and call it forth into form.

Experiencing oneness moment by moment is feeling the presence of the divine within us each moment. It is feeling and experiencing powerfulness at our core. It is recognizing the constant movement of divine substance through us, manifesting into form. It is also feeling all the pain and suffering of the world within our own being and allowing love to flow in those parts of ourselves.

Like many, I cannot say that I experience oneness in every moment as my mind wanders at times into the wilderness of separation. But the more I remember, and the longer the moments are that I am in full awareness of oneness, the sweeter life is. And I accept this as my charge – to keep remembering to remember. Remember that I am one with and as all that is. I am that I AM. And so are each one of us. There is only One.

The invitation this day is to remember you are one with all joy, creativity, wisdom, power, and love. The further invitation is to channel the flow of infinite divine substance into the highest form for yourself and all others. The possibilities are great, infinite in fact. Shine on my friends. The world is what we make it.

Enjoy the journey.

Creating A World That Works for Everyone

earth looking planet render with thin atmosphere and shadow

by Gregory Toole

On the spiritual journey, we are frequently presented with paradox. Paradox occurs when two seemingly opposite statements are both true. One such paradox is that each person is divinely given everything they need, and each person plays an essential role in everyone else getting their needs met.

One reason we might be challenged with this paradox is our tendency sometimes to think of ourselves as separate entities, only theoretically or metaphorically connected to one another. Since we all navigate the world in what appear to be our own unique bodies, it is easy to think of ourselves as individual silos or islands, and to think of the spiritual teaching that offers us dominion over our lives to mean we have little or no responsibility for our fellow beings, or the opposite, that we have to take care of each person because they are less capable than we are.

We see the dysfunction of this belief in separation played out through the two major political parties in the United States. In general, Democrats vie for more social programs because of a belief that society has a role in meeting individual needs. Republicans vie for fewer social programs espousing the virtue of individual personal responsibility.

When we understand the paradox discussed here, we realize that both parties are arguing for the two different sides of the paradox. And since both sides of the paradox are true, it is a meaningless contention, with the real opportunity for dialogue being on how to balance resources between the two truths.

It calls us to remember that all of life is one divine whole. The very earth that we live on is but one planet in a galaxy of tens of billions of planets in a universe with tens of billions of galaxies, numbers that we can’t really even comprehend, except to know that all that we inhabit is but a speck in the universe.

Our bodies literally have trillions of cells all working together to allow one human body to function perfectly. And yet each living cell is also an entity unto itself, perfectly capable of fulfilling its purpose. We, as individuals on the planet, are like the cells in the body. We are all individual parts of one body called earth, each fulfilling our own purpose, and also playing an essential role in the functioning of the whole.

While the cells in our body, under normal conditions, do not vie with each other to meet their individual needs without regard to the other cells and the overall functioning of the body, we as humans often do that very thing.

Every person is divinely provided with everything they need, and we each are part of the meeting of everyone’s needs. We each are the hands, feet, and eyes of the divine. It is through each of us that the world works for everyone, or not. The whole is one of harmony and each individual is called to work in harmony with others for the benefit of the whole.

Each of us has great potential to create a world that works for everyone. This need not be a burden, but more an expansion of awareness. When we are aware of the essential role we play, it is all the little opportunities that make a difference.

There is the well-told story of two people walking along a beach where thousands of starfish have washed ashore and are drying out in the sun, ultimately destined to die. One person begins to pick them up one by one and throw them back into the ocean. The other person says, “What are you doing? There are thousands of starfish here. How can you possibly make a difference?” The first person, upon casting the next starfish into the ocean declares, “Made a difference for that one.” And that is each of us – we have great capacity to make this a world that works for everyone.

Thank you for the difference you are making, just one starfish at a time!

Enjoy the journey.