Posted in Authentic Freedom, Authentic Freedom Academy

Mission Possible!

Our Mission:

Authentic Freedom Academy is a center for experiential education, supporting the transformation of human consciousness through the integration of Western psychology and Western Spirituality, equipping students to be agents of positive, non-violent change in the world.

We accomplish this mission through:

  • writing and publishing
  • one-on-one mentoring
  • local and online courses
  • on-going service to the community

 

Outer change begins with inner change.

Inner change begins with self-knowledge.

Self- Knowledge leads to self-actualization.

Self-actualized individuals, are inherently non-violent, cooperative and collaborative, and are naturally motivated to use their unique gifts in service to the betterment of the world.

 

Authentic Freedom™ is a trademarked protocol developed by Lauri Ann Lumby, OM, MATS, founder and director of Authentic Freedom Academy. Authentic Freedom™ integrates specific tools and practices of Western Psychology with those of Western Spirituality, resulting in a powerful process through which participants are supported in becoming self-actualized and are then empowered to share their unique giftedness in service to the betterment of the world.

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Specific Tools used in Authentic Freedom™:

  • Western, Eastern and Indigenous Mindfulness, Contemplation and Journey practices
  • The Spiritual Exercises and Rules of Discernment of St. Ignatius
  • Creativity Practices
  • The Myers-Briggs Personality Profile
  • The Enneagram Temperament Tool
  • The Spiritual/Personal Gifts Inventory
  • The Authentic Freedom™ protocol

 

HierarchyofPurpose

From Western Psychology, Authentic Freedom™ draws from:

  • Carl Jung’s creative imagination, archetype and shadow work
  • Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and theories of self-actualization
  • The humanistic theories and creativity practices of Carl and Natalie Rogers
  • The stages of spiritual development of James Fowler and John Westerhoff
  • Bill Plotkin’s development of the human Soul

From Western Spirituality, Authentic Freedom™ has its roots in the original teachings of Jesus* which were then formalized into the meditation, contemplation and service practices of Western Monasticism, specifically those favored in Benedictine, Franciscan, and Ignatian spirituality.

*The original teachings of Jesus are those rooted in the universal (and non-religious) call of love:

  • love of God (the God of your own understanding)
  • love of Self
  • love of Neighbor – recognizing that all of humanity is our neighbor

and then:

  • lived out through acts of compassion
  • working for justice

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What Authentic Freedom is not:

  • Authentic Freedom is not counseling.  Whereas counseling focuses on treating “disease” and supporting behavior modification and recovery, the focus in Authentic Freedom is self-awareness and deep, enduring transformation. Authentic Freedom may include the healing of old wounds and unresolved trauma, but it is accomplished through supporting deep, inner change.  In Authentic Freedom, anxiety, depression and panic attacks are not pathologized but are acknowledged as symptoms of the Soul longing for its fulfillment, symptoms that subside on their own the closer we get to the purpose of our Soul.
  • Authentic Freedom is not life-coaching.  While encouragement and support are a big part of Authentic Freedom, the emphasis is on personal responsibility, accountability and empowerment.  The goal of Authentic Freedom is that one day you will no longer need our services because you will have all the tools you need to fly on your own.

NOTE:  If you are under the care of a licensed therapist or life coach, you will find that Authentic Freedom complements this work by providing you with additional tools in support of your overall goals of self-care.

 

lauriprofilecolorwebshot2013Contact Lauri Lumby today to find out how Authentic Freedom might be for you. lauri@authenticfreedom.love or (920) 230-1313.

Posted in Authentic Freedom, church

Authentic Freedom Virtual Church coming soon!

Coming Soon!

My dear friends, the Authentic Freedom Virtual Church is an offering a long-time in the making and currently under works with a launch date of (no later than) March 12, 2014.  (Breathe….relax…..breathe…..relax….trust….)  🙂  In a nutshell:

jesusWe are a community of men and women who consider Jesus to be our teacher, while honoring the spiritual truths inherent within all sacred traditions.  We recognize the Divine as that which is at once outside of us, within us and present within all of creation and which can be acknowledged by any Name, Image or Presence.  We believe in the inherent potential of all human beings to become self-actualized and acknowledge the spiritual journey as a formative tool in this endeavor. We believe in the law of love and seek to know more fully the love of the Divine that dwells within us and which seeks to be known in the world through us and which then serves to support the betterment of our world. Abraham Maslow called this process, self-actualization. Bill Plotkin calls it the birth of the Soul.

As such, the Authentic Freedom virtual church is not about doctrine or prostheletizing, but is instead focused on being a resource for spiritual formation in support of your journey of self-actualization.  Through sound spiritual formation, you will be empowered to discover the answer to the following three questions:

  • Who am I?
  • Whose am I?  (What is my understanding of the Divine and what is my relationship to that? or What is the Source of inner peace and contentment and how do I cultivate that?)
  • What are my gifts and how am I being called to use them for my own personal fulfillment and in service to the betterment of the world?

Through this process of spiritual formation in support of our self-actualization, we discover the uniquely creative way in which we have been gifted to find meaning, purpose and fulfillment in our lives and through which we are compelled to serve the betterment of the world.

Participation in the Authentic Freedom virtual church will be facilitated through:

1)      The Weekly Agape’ Spiritual Practice newsletter where you will be given suggestions on specific meditation and creative practices to help support your own spiritual development.

2)      The Weekly Authentic Freedom Virtual Church service available on this site and through YouTube.

3)      The Authentic Freedom virtual community on Facebook where you have an opportunity to connect with other Authentic Freedom virtual church participants.

Support for this ministry will be facilitated through your choice of a one-off donation or a monthly subscriber’s fee, and all will be welcome regardless of their ability to pay!

Thank you for your support as I continue to discern and construct this offering.

Love,

Lauri

Posted in Authentic Freedom, Freedom, Inspiration, Spiritual Practices, world changes

How to Change Ourselves So We Can Change the World Part II

Today’s blog concludes the discussion on the recent government shutdown. Examining our government’s (senators, congressmen and President Obama are all culpable in this mess!) complete failure at the job WE hired them to do, we acknowledge that if we want things to change, first we have to change ourselves.  Yesterday’s blog examined the beginning stages of HOW we might begin to change and today’s blog concludes that discussion with a process for healing the fears that keep us imprisoned within ourselves and therefore by the powerful and wealthy few.

changing the world
changing the world

Suspend Your Disbelief

As my friend, Ted Balser (watch Monday for his debut column on this site, Ted and His Friends – Midlife Advice for the Slow White Male) often observes, “In order to grow and change, we must first suspend our disbelief.”  This is especially true of the personal development process that helps us to transcend our fears so that we are no longer imprisoned within and no longer able to be manipulated and controlled by the underdeveloped, so-called powerful outside of us.  True power comes from within and it is in naming and claiming this power that we find true, authentic, freedom.  While we may not be able to find scientific proof to verify the truths that will secure our personal power, thereby allowing us to transcend our fears, thousands of years of spiritual teachings (across traditions) and indigeneous cultural practices uphold the validity of these truths.

Finding Our Power

In my book, Authentic Freedom – Claiming a Life of Contentment and Joy, I reveal, what I call, the seven core spiritual truths that we are invited to embrace in the process of ensuring our inner freedom and claiming our personal power, which when embraced, help us to transcend the seven core fears of the human condition (See yesterday’s blog for more on these fears).  If we had grown up in a culture where sound, personal development practices had been cultivated since childhood, we might already hold these beliefs.  Unfortunately, we live in a culture where human development only happens by accident…if at all, the result of which is collective arrested development (See Nature and the Human Soul by Bill Plotkin for more on this topic).  Sadly, most of American culture (especially those in positions of perceived power) has not development emotionally, mentally, psychologically or spiritually past the age of 12.  We do, however have the power to change this.

Transcending Fear through the Seven Spiritual Truths

Again, embracing these fears requires us to suspend our disbelief, thereby taking a leap of faith.  In short, these truths cannot be measured through empirical studies, because in truth, these are truths that lay deep within us and have nothing to do with the outward circumstances of our lives.  When we identify that a fear has arisen in us and then employ appropriate mindfulness based practices, the fear is transcended and we rest in the contentment of one of the following universal spiritual truths:

  • There is enough.  All of my need are being abundantly met.
  • I am uniquely and creatively gifted to assist in making the world a better, more peaceful and more loving place.
  • I can be my most authentic self and there is nothing outside of me that can prevent me from doing this.
  • I am not only loved, but am the very nature of love itself.
  • I am free to hear, listen and give expression to my truth.
  • I know my truth and the path of my highest good and I will discover this in a time that is perfectly aligned with my own highest good.
  • I am not alone.

When we rest in the knowledge of these truths, we experience love, contentment and joy and we are able to become our most authentic and inwardly powerful self.  In transcending our fears, we are changing ourselves which then empowers us to facilitate change in our world.

Lauri Ann Lumby works with people one-on-one in cultivating the practices of Authentic Freedom which empowers people to transcend their fears and to find a life of meaning, purpose and fulfillment through which they help to support the betterment of the world.  To explore Authentic Freedom mentoring for yourself, email lauri@yourspiritualtruth.com or call (920) 230-1313. 

Posted in Being Human, Body/Mind/Spirit connection, Midlife Journey

Nature and the Human Soul – Book review

During my own journey through midlife (including perimenopause leading to menopause), I have found in one author an enormous amount of guidance, support, validation and affirmation about where I have been and where I think I might be going.  Bill Plotkin, in his books, Soulcraft, Wild Mind and now, Nature and the Human Soul, presents a roadmap for the entire human journey, from birth to death – especially for those interested in living in a more peaceful, loving and harmonious world.  Nature and the Human Soul, the most recent of his books that I have read, provided me with affirmation and support for the midlife journey while affirming the choices I have made in my parenting and giving me hope for my elder years.  I love the work Bill is doing in the world and I highly recommend all of this books.  In today’s blog, I review Nature and the Human Soul

NatureandSoul

Moving beyond Maslow, Erickson, Piaget, Fowler and Westerhoff (among others), Bill Plotkin presents a model of human development which promises to transform our culture from one rooted in fear to one embodied in love.  Transcending the ecocentric, materialistic ideals of Western Society, Nature and the Human Soul – Cultivating Wholeness and Community in a Fragmented World,  re-imagines a culture in which the deepest yearnings of the human heart are met, at every age, by those charged with care, guidance and support and where every person is empowered in the birth of their Soul – the uniquely creative way in which they have been gifted to find meaning, purpose, fulfillment and through which they are called to serve the betterment of the world.  Through his own personal insights and experiences, informed by modern psychology and indigenious traditions and practices, Plotkin presents practical advice and simple tools for cultivating a culture that is rooted in Soul and working for the benefit of all of creation.  Nature and the Human Soul would be of interest to anyone concerned with restoring our world to a state of sustainability, peace and harmonious co-existence and is a must-read for parents and teachers and others responsible for the formation of future generations.

Lauri Ann Lumby, author of Authentic Freedom – claiming a life of contentment and joy and Returning – a woman’s midlife journey to herself. http://yourspiritualtruth.com.

Posted in Empowerment, Freedom, Midlife Journey, Spiritual Practices, teachers

“Mischief Managed” – Book Review for Wild Mind by Bill Plotkin

I’ve recently been enjoying the books of Bill Plotkin, psychologist, author, wilderness guide and cultural visionary.  I just completed his latest book, Wild Mind, and I LOVE IT!  Wild Mind provides a map for the journey of birthing our Soul, offering tools for spiritual and psychological healing and growth.  I love this book! 

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Assuming the guise of modern-day wizard, Bill Plotkin is his latest release, Wild Mind, presents readers with a gift akin to the Marauder’s Map of Harry Potter fame.  The Marauder’s Map is gifted to only the bravest of wizards and can solely be opened by those clever enough to uncover the incantation for its opening, “I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.”  Upon opening the map, the wizard discovers insight into the potential obstacles and dangers along the path of their quest.  The Map of the Human Psyche serves this very purpose in the human quest for the Soul – defined by Plotkin as “a person’s unique purpose or identity.”

With Plotkin’s guidance, readers are invited to plunge into the depths of their psyche so that they may uncover and then transform all of the ego-constructs, defense mechanisms, and inner obstacles to living their Soul’s purpose.  With a breadth and depth akin to the Enneagram, Plotkin presents a comprehensive approach to spiritual and psychological growth that speaks in images and symbols that are universal and fully grounded in our indigenous spirit.  In his nature-based map of the psyche, Plotkin gives readers the tools and support they need to face all that they have hidden in the darkness so that they might bring them to the light in service to their unique identity and purpose.  In freeing their imprisoned Souls and enjoying the contentment, fulfillment and joy that this brings, readers can then confidently close the map, tapping it with their wand while proudly proclaiming, “Mischief Managed.”

Wild Mind is perfect for psychologist, therapists, counselors, ministers, and spiritual directors; for self-directed seekers of spiritual and psychological growth and would be well suited for an intentional group gathered around this same intention.

billPlotkinBill Plotkin, PhD, describes himself as a “psychologist gone wild.”  A cultural visionary, author and wilderness guide, he’s been blazing new trails for decades.  His ecocentric re-visioning of psychology invites us into a conscious and embodied relationship with soul and with the natural world.  His previous books are Soulcraft and Nature and the Human Soul.  He lives in southwestern Colorado.  You can learn more about Bill, his programs and services at http://www.animas.org.