Posted in Freedom

Why I Can No Longer Celebrate Independence Day

On July 4th, we commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the day when the US citizens declared their freedom from British rule.  For the past 244 years, we have celebrated this as the day of our “freedom” and have marked this day with fireworks, parades, carnivals, and backyard parties. We have celebrated July 4th as if we truly are free and as if the freedoms meant for some mean freedom for all.

But the sad truth of history is that the freedoms declared in the Declaration of Independence and later set forth in our Constitution, were only intended for a few.  From day one of our nation, women and people of color were not given the same freedoms as the men who demanded them.  While some of this has changed in the past 244 years, and the freedoms given to U.S. citizens have expanded to include women (in some cases) and people of color (in fewer cases), there are still citizens of our nation and those who are seeking the freedoms we seem to guarantee who are not and may never be free.

Until the freedoms the United States claims to espouse are guaranteed and protected for all, I will not and cannot celebrate Independence Day. Until the rights of some become the rights for all, we are not truly free.

  • Until women can walk the street or go to a party without fear of being raped, we are not free.
  • Until black men can leave a place of business without being murdered, we are not free.
  • Until we have eliminated homelessness and hunger in our nation, we are not free.
  • Until a quality education is guaranteed and funded for all, we are not free.
  • Until access to medical care is guaranteed and isn’t a financial burden on those who are already struggling, we are not free.
  • Until women and children can feel safe in their homes, we are not free.
  • Until the justice system is fair and equitable, we are not free.
  • Until reform over incarceration becomes the norm, we are not free.
  • Until obstacles to voting are eliminated, we are not free.
  • Until we come up with REAL solutions to poverty, we are not free.
  • Until government corruption is eliminated, we are not free.
  • Until people can seek freedom in our nation without fear of reprisal, we are not free.
  • Until diversity is not only honored but celebrated, we are not free.
  • Until racism, police brutality, sexism, genderism, and religious intolerance are eliminated from our nation, we are not free.

For centuries, our nation has touted the glories of freedom, in a nation where millions are not truly free.  Until all are truly free, I will not be celebrating Independence Day.  Instead, I will be setting this day aside for prayer and for advocating on behalf of those who are not yet free.

New Colossus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

– Emma Lazarus

 

 

Posted in Inspiration

Independence Day Message

Today in the US, we commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the day when the US citizens declared their freedom from British rule. Of course things didn’t end there as the Revolutionary War had only just begun and continued to be fought until 1783. It took a little over 7 years for the US to actually gain its independence.

But, as we all know, the “war” for freedom continues. Here at Authentic Freedom, we are concerned about the any limitations to human freedom in our world, but more importantly, we acknowledge that TRUE FREEDOM can only be known from within. Authentic Freedom is defined here as a persistent and enduring sense of peace, contentment and joy that is INDEPENDENT of the external circumstances in our lives. This truth has remained self-evident throughout human history – women, men and children who have been able to find peace within themselves even in the face of some of the most dire experiences of the human condition. They found this peace by detaching from the externals and drawing their attention within…..deep within in their connection with Self (that which some call “God”).

My invitation for us today is three-fold:
1)To continue our work on cultivating inner freedom.
2) To read and reflect on the documents which set forth the ideas of freedom in our country and in the world.
3)To pray for all the people in our world who are suffering because of the infringements on their own personal freedom and dignity.

http://www.ushistory.org/declaration/document/

https://constitutionus.com/

https://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/

Posted in Authentic Freedom, Empowerment

Unraveling from Outside Perceived Authority

When they (the temple police) had brought them, they had them stand before the (religious) council. The high priest questioned them, saying, “We gave you strict orders not to teach in this (Jesus’) name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and you are determined to bring this man’s blood on us.” But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than any human authority.”

Acts 5: 27-29

BOOM! In one sentence, the apostles make it clear who it is we are truly called to “obey.” We are not called to obey human authority – only God.  But here is where it gets dodgy. Whose God and whose interpretation of God are we to obey?  That answer is also clear, but we have to dig a little to find it.

Let’s go back to Jesus. In Jesus’ world, there were two authorities – the Romans who created and enforced the civil laws and the authorities in the temple who created and enforced the religious law.  There was also a third “authority” – that which arose out of Jesus’ cultural conditioning – things like prejudice against women, people of other beliefs, homosexuality, etc.   Jesus, however, obeyed none of these. As his ministry expanded (or rather, his understanding of his ministry) he obeyed them even less (see MT 15: 21-28 for an example of this). Even as a child, Jesus displayed a tendency toward obedience only to God:

Now every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the festival of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up as usual for the festival. When the festival was ended and they started to return, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it. Assuming that he was in the group of travelers, they went a day’s journey. Then they started to look for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem to search for him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, “Child, why have you treated us like this? Look, your father and I have been searching for you in great anxiety.” He said to them, “Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be about my Father’s business? But they did not understand what he said to them.   Luke 2: 41-50

Paul spoke of Jesus’ obedience in this way:

Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus,

who, though he was in the form of God,
did not regard equality with God
as something to be exploited,
but emptied himself,
taking the form of a slave,
being born in human likeness.
And being found in human form,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to the point of death—
even death on a cross.

Phil 2: 5-8

Jesus obeyed God….period. And we are invited to do the same.  Yet we live in a culture that tells us otherwise.  Instead, we are taught from a very early age, all of the outside authorities we are meant to obey – our parents, our teachers, our peer group, our priest, our religion, our boss, the rules of the corporation for whom we work (written and unwritten), the laws of our community, state and nation, and the worst of all of them – advertising!  Many of those who are placed in positions of outside authority are good people with our best interests in mind.  Some are using their power to manipulate and control others for their own selfish gain. Some rules made by these outside authorities no longer make sense in an evolving world.  Some still make sense, but maybe no longer within the context in which they were formed.

But when we have been conditioned to look outside of ourselves for guidance and direction, how are we to know what is God speaking to us and what is the outside perceived authority? Again, Paul provides a clue:

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Posted in Authentic Freedom, detachment, Lessons

Freedom in Not Knowing

Many moons ago, I thought I knew. I thought I knew and understood the workings of the world.  I believed in God.  Jesus was my teacher.  I wasn’t really sure about the whole thing about hell, but I definitely believed in heaven.  I thought there was a distinct line between right and wrong and that life functioned in absolutes (kind of but not really….which is why I kept getting in trouble with the priests.) I believed that Jesus lived, died and rose from the dead.  I even believed that the “fullness of redemption” was in the Catholic Church (how silly of me!).

As I grew and began to explore my beliefs, my theology, my spirituality, myself, my beliefs began to change.  I no longer believed in a place called hell. I still believed in heaven, but longed for something more in this life. (Why did we have to die to meet God face to face?) While my beliefs were changing, I continued to cling to the idea that what I believed was absolutely true – at least for me.  At this stage in my journey I was ok with others believing differently, but I still thought it was my job to convince some of my beliefs (especially the Institution of the Catholic Church), and that in some (many) cases there were some things that were just inherently wrong and that I knew what was right. (Again, how silly of me!)

Then, life taught me otherwise. Now, at the ripe young age of 54, I KNOW NOTHING.  I don’t know a thing about (that which we call) God.  I don’t truly know anything about Jesus – he sounds like he could have been a cool dude, but what evidence do we have that he was even real (so says the scientist in me)? I don’t know if there is a heaven – or a hell for that matter.  I don’t even know if I’m real or if this is all just a dream!

I don’t know…..and I’m totally ok with that! I don’t need to know, because if there is one thing I have learned in this life, NOTHING is certain.  Nothing. Not even my own discernment, sense of right and wrong, or my “calling” to serve the cause of love.  I don’t even know if my own beliefs are true as it is quite possible that everything I think I know I simply made up to make myself feel better.  And, I’m totally ok with that too.

Why? Because it does not matter. I no longer care what is real or not, what is truth or not because I am no longer clinging to the need to know in a world that is anything but predictable or even definable. I know nothing.  And that’s ok.  I’m also totally ok with whatever you want to believe and I have no need to convince you otherwise.

There is freedom in not knowing. I no longer need to convince.  I no longer need to change things.  I no longer need to stand on my soapbox waiting for “the other” to agree with my ideas, philosophies, or beliefs.  I am ok with being me and I’m ok with you being you.  And if you need to be “right” – that is ok too.  It is a natural human desire to want to KNOW – to be able to define, explain, make sense of the human condition and to be sure that our own knowledge is right.  Knowing gives us a perceived sense of safety and surety in a world that is everything but.  Knowing that at any minute Jupiter might tumble out of its orbit, pummel to earth and destroy us all makes us seek after something to hang on to – our beliefs, our philosophies, our theologies.  We need what we think we know to be right because it makes us feel “safe” in an otherwise unsafe world.

But knowledge is an illusion. At the most basic core of who we are – WE DO NOT KNOW.  We don’t know a single thing!  When we understand this about life – realizing that life is uncertain and then become content in that uncertainty – we find peace.  When we are no longer seeking after truth or clinging to our need to be right, we are free.  We can let go and stop worrying about everyone else and what they do or do not believe.  We are free to be ourselves. At the end of the day, this is (my belief) what we are here for…..or not.  The choice is up to you!

Full content reserved for Plus, Premium and Premium-Plus Members. Click here to learn more on how you can become a member and enjoy the tools that have helped me in my own journey.  Find an example of what is available in the full content HERE.

Posted in Mary Magdalene, order of the magdalene, priestess training, self-actualization, Spiritual Formation

From Religious Cult to Spiritual Liberation – a Testimonial

I received this powerful testimonial from one of the women who recently completed the full Magdalene Priestess Training and in doing so, received her second ordination.  Thank you Carol K. for your beautiful words and most importantly, for sharing your beautiful Soul with all those who have journeyed through this process with you.  Love, Lauri

 

After escaping a religious cult (and navigating my way through a spiritual and emotional breakdown), I decided to re-enter the online spiritual community. I knew that my beliefs could best be described as “Gnostic” or “heretical” (still are). Lauri Lumby’s Magdalene mini-course was the first thing I stumbled upon, via Motherhouse of the Goddess.

I’d read books on Mary Magdalene and alternative gospels by Starhawk, Elaine Pagels, and Margaret Starbird and agreed there was much more to the story.

What I didn’t expect was the open honesty pouring out of the various students. Not to mention the gentle guidance and affirmations from Lauri herself. A far cry from my previous experience with that other group, where my visions and interpretations were all shot down as products of my own ego, rather than coming from Spirit.

I think I’ve taken just about every course taught by Lauri, except those in the Order of Melchizidek. I recently completed my second ordination within the Magdalene Priestesshood.

Lauri always encourages students to find their truth. No pressure. No dogma. Because of her, I am exploring avenues I never thought would be possible for me. I’m even exploring the possibility of teaching a course myself. I am seeing more options open themselves up to me as I become more empowered in .y gifts. Thank you so much, Lauri, for helping me find my true worth!

Carol K.

Magdalene Priestess Training Course
Learn more about the Magdalene Priestess Training here.
Posted in Authentic Freedom, Being Human, detachment, Faith, Freedom, Healing, Lessons

Authentic Freedom – Help for When the Bottom Falls Out

About a month ago, I received news that is a COMPLETE game changer. This news changes everything AND puts everything into question.  This news impacts literally EVERY aspect of my life and to say it has caused a mild state of shock would be an understatement.  It is during times like these that Authentic Freedom – the process I created which supports human transformation – comes most in handy and proves its effectiveness.

Each and every one of us has had these kinds of experiences – when the rug is pulled out from beneath us, when the ceiling caves in and when the universe, in one fell swoop, tosses us out of the nest of what we have known into what we cannot yet imagine.

The greatest temptation during these times of freefall is to make plans. Our mind, in search of something to hang on to, out of fear of the unknown, tries to make plans, or tries to become attached to potential and possible outcomes.  As many have learned, when we make plans (or try to make plans), God laughs.  I have witnessed the truth of this many times over in the past month as I have tried to plan my way out of and through this change.  A possibility shows up, a potential, a promise, and I get excited about it, imagining all the possible ways in which this will support myself and my family and then POW, the Universe throws a wrench in the deal and the whole things falls apart.  This is EXACTLY what happened this past Wednesday.  Two universes collided and everything that I had planned and waged my future on completely collapsed.

anxiety2

Understanding the importance of grieving our losses, I have allowed myself time to grieve – to cry the ugliest cry, to tantrum, to rant and rave and wail. I reached out to my most trusted advisors for support and perspective and allowed myself to move through and to feel deep support.  In this, I found my way through the debris to the place where I can be open to what truly needs to manifest, knowing that in every death is the promise of new life.  I just don’t yet know what that new life might be.

I then created time and space away from all that might distract me from what I truly need to be doing at this time: SURRENDER. And in this surrendering, turning to what I know will guide me and support me in ALLOWING what it is that the Universe has in store for me – not a plan of my making, but one that comes directly from God and which is sure to be in my highest good, using my gifts in a way that is both fulfilling for me and in service to the betterment of the world.  And what I know will guide and support me is the very process that I created for others, Authentic Freedom.

In this process, I maintain diligent attention to my spiritual practice and apply the principles of Authentic Freedom for identifying and moving through the fears that might otherwise prevent me from seeing and knowing God’s plan when it shows up. I will then use the process of Authentic Freedom to move me through any fears or inner resistance to God’s plan so that I can step into the freedom that God has in store for me (and for all of us when we are paying attention).

The irony is not lost on me that all of this has occurred in proximity to the Fourth of July – the time we commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the journey that secured our liberty. As we celebrate the Fourth of July, let us be grateful for this external freedom while taking steps to secure the only freedom we will ever truly need – freedom from the inner fears, resistance and unhealed wounds that might otherwise stand in the way of a life of contentment and joy.

Authentic Freedom – Claiming a Life of Contentment and Joy available now on Amazon.  Buy it HERE.

AuthenticFreedomcover

 

 

Posted in About Lauri, Authentic Freedom, Empowerment, Freedom, Spiritual Practices

Awaken Equip Empower

The greatest professional challenge I have faced is trying to explain to people what I do for a living.  When I offer titles like, Spiritual Director, Spiritual Counselor, Hands-on-Healer, Human Development Expert, Teacher, Interfaith Minister, I mostly get met with a blank stare.  When I boldly proclaim Author, people mostly cringe.  So…in today’s blog, I will try to explain what I, Lauri Ann Lumby, actually do for a living and WHY the services I provide might be of benefit to you! 

Midwife to your Soul

AWAKEN

This is the part of my job that is completely invisible, intangible, defies measurement or explanation, and yet, it is a gift I have that is intimately part of my call, and one I can no longer deny.  In my presence, people wake up.  They wake up to their own longing, the creative call within them, the desire to know peace, love, joy and the hunger to use their gifts in service to the betterment of the world.  Under my gaze and simply by being in my presence, people wake up.  Now….with that, there are one of two responses – they either stay and grow, or they run away screaming in fear.  The stay and grow part is really cool as I then have the opportunity to be witness to the excitement that happens in the other in the discovery of their gift and their call.  The running away in fear piece – that’s a weird one.  Fortunately, I no longer take it personally, but it is only a little unsettling when I suddenly become the “enemy” as a projection of their own unacknowledged fear.

EQUIP

Here’s the fun part.  When people awaken and they stay, they get to go on a treasure hunt, and I have the profound gift of being their guide.  I get to help them uncover their gifts, identify their passions and explore the call of their soul – the uniquely creative way in which they have been gifted to find meaning and purpose in the world and to find fulfillment in sharing this gift in service to the betterment of the world. How fun is that?  There are many tools I use to help people in this search – mindfulness and creativity practices, temperament and personality assessments, one-on-one counseling and mentoring.

EMPOWER

This is the stage where things get a little messy.  The closer we get to our gifts and our call, the harder the ego (our false self) tries to work against us.  The ego likes same, status quo, and the harnessing of our gifts almost always means SIGNIFICANT change.  So as we approach our gifts, the ego throws all kinds of obstacles in our path – fear, anxiety, past hurts, the unhealed and unrealized parts of ourselves, the inner critic, the negative messages we subconsciously or consciously took on from others, the parts of ourselves we have rejected, suppressed, repressed, etc.  The ego does this both from within us and from outside of us.  My job is to help my clients and students identify the false self at work and to offer sound practices for freeing themselves from these obstacles.  These practices include movement, mindfulness, meditation, shamanic soul retrieval practices, hands-on-healing, the Authentic Freedom protocol which I developed, and others.  The goal of the Empower stage of the process is to do just that – EMPOWER.  I firmly believe and have come to see that my job is to make TEACHERS, not enable followers.  As such, my greatest joy is when one of my clients or students is ready to leave the nest and fly on their own….it is in this moment that I know I have accomplished my task, and that they have fully and freely birthed their own soul.  This, indeed, is my greatest joy!

Lauri Ann Lumby is available to AWAKE, EQUIP and EMPOWER you.  To set up a one-on-one consultation, call (920) 230-1313 or email lauri@yourspiritualtruth.com

Posted in Authentic Freedom, Virtual Church

Spiritual Beings in Human Form – Virtual Church Service

The Authentic Freedom Virtual Church service for Sunday, July 6, 2014 is LIVE.  The theme this week is Authentic Freedom in contrast to liberty (Happy Independence Day!) and how Paul’s letter to the Romans invites us into a deeper experience of authentic freedom.  Specifically, we are reminded that we are spiritual beings here to have a human experience – learning to transcend the fears and perceived limitations of the human condition through connection with spirit, while embracing all it means to be human.

statue-of-liberty_450_20130325

Find this week’s service HERE.   

Posted in Empowerment, Enneagram, Freedom

Living in Freedom Class


It has been a LONG time coming…..I am excited to announce that I will be offering my Living in Freedom class starting May 19th! (see flier attached.) This is your personal invitation!
Many of you have heard me rave about the Enneagram, and what a powerful tool it is for self-discovery, personal growth and transformation. It is through the Enneagram that I learned of my compulsion of perfectionism and its underlying passion of anger. It has been working with the Enneagram that I have learned to identify the triggers which feed this inner dissatisfaction and resentment so that I might calm these triggers while cultivating a greater sense of contentment within. Working with the Enneagram has helped me to feel more whole, more content, more at peace and to find productive ways to channel the inherent giftedness (and dissatisfaction) of being a Reformer (Type 1 on the Enneagram). I have used the Enneagram with clients and students for the past 12 years with terrific results.

In this course, Living in Freedom, I use ancient wisdom literature to unfold the nine temperament types of the Enneagram. I then present mindfulness and creativity exercises as tools through which we are able to fully integrate the lessons of the Enneagram, while providing effective practices that you can use beyond this course to deepen your own inner journey toward self-actualization…..the place we are compelled to go in our search for meaning, purpose, contentment and joy!

I am giving you first “dibs” at the course as I will be limiting registration to 12 participants. Also….please do not let the “ancient wisdom literature” (Judeo-Christian scripture) dissuade you. As many of you know, my approach with scripture has NOTHING to do with dogma…..and everything to do with finding your own truth beyond the words. 🙂

LivinginFreedomFlier