Posted in Mary Magdalene, self-actualization, Spiritual Formation

Fall Reading List – Mary Magdalene

Lauri Ann Lumby, OM, OPM, MATS

Lauri Ann Lumby, OM, OPM, MATS, is the author of seven books, most of which were given to her by Mary Magdalene.  Directly given to Lauri or inspired by the work and mission of Mary Magdalene, these books provide the foundation and practices she learned through and with Jesus and which she was empowered to continue to share in his stead.  If Mary Magdalene and the journey toward self-actualization are topics of interest to you, consider adding these to your fall reading list:

 

 

Song of the Beloved Book

Song of the Beloved – the Gospel According to Mary Magdalene is a provocative retelling of the Jesus story from the perspective of Mary Magdalene.  After fourteen years of suffering the debilitating effects of trauma, Mary is healed by Jesus.  She then becomes his most enthusiastic and devoted disciple; later becoming his companion, co-minister, beloved and wife.  Designated the Magdalene, Mary is appointed to carry on Jesus’ ministry after his death.

A great work of fiction, inspired by scripture, historical documents and ancient sacred texts, Song of the Beloved provides nourishment and inspiration for those in search of a relevant Christianity – with Jesus and Mary as two who lived the fullness of the human experience while teaching us how to love.

 

Authentic Freedom – Claiming a Life of Contentment and Joy transcends centuries of dogma to reveal the powerful and life-changing message at the heart of Jesus’ teachings and the universal truths at the core of every religion. The book’s unique approach offers an opportunity for the reader to heal the separation they feel within themselves, with God and with each other, ultimately revealing the truth of Oneness. Built upon the compelling integration of Eastern Energy Medicine and the 2000-year-old tradition of Christian, contemplative spiritual practices, Authentic Freedom reveals a Dynamic and unifying path of spiritual transformation that speaks to people of all traditions and beliefs.

Authentic Freedom is the process Mary Magdalene was led through and learned from Jesus.  This is the process that empowered her to become co-equal with Jesus and which allowed her to assist him in rising from the dead and which made her worthy to continue Jesus’ work in his stead.

Only Love – the Secret Teaching of Mary Magdalene is a collection of writings received by Lauri Ann Lumby on behalf of Mary Magdalene. The ultimate purpose of these teachings is to support the world as it moves out of the fear that has held it imprisoned to the Love that is its original nature. Thank you for being a vessel through which you, and then the world, shall know that even in the human experience, there is Only Love.

“We are in an exciting time in the evolution of human consciousness. If you have found yourself drawn to these words, it is because you agreed to incarnate on the earth plane at this time to help usher in the age of Love.  You have agreed to this on behalf of the Divine intention of Love and for the sake of all of humanity.  As you know, this has been no easy task.  In order to support humanity in its next stage of evolution you have first had to do it for yourself.”

Union BookMary Magdalene is many things to many people, but to the initiated, she is the Beloved of Christ, his co-equal partner, and guardian of the mystical teachings and practices of the Western spiritual tradition. More than any other disciple, Mary understood the mystical, gnostic, and alchemical teachings of Jesus.  Mary came to embody these teachings and was empowered by Christ to deliver these teachings to the Western world.

Union – a Year of Spiritual Lessons and Practices with Mary Magdalene is a collection of lessons which when diligently applied, empowers the reader to experience the truth of Oneness (Union) that Jesus taught and which Mary Magdalene came to embody. These lessons were revealed to Lauri Ann Lumby through her intimate partnership with the Magdalene/Christ and support the reader’s journey toward remembering their original nature as Love.

 

All of Lauri’s books are available in paperback or Kindle through Amazon.com.  Buy them HERE.  Please also watch this site for announcements on the audio versions of Lauri’s books.

 

Posted in Authentic Freedom, Authentic Freedom Book, Forgiveness, Relationships, Spiritual Development

Spiritual Growth and Our Changing Understanding of the Divine

Below is an excerpt from my book, Authentic Freedom- Claiming a Life of Contentment and Joy.  Authentic Freedom provides a comprehensive path and protocol for supporting our inner spiritual development, integrating the contemplative practices of the Judeo-Christian tradition with knowledge of the chakras.  Learn more HERE.

Buy it now on Amazon

 

In the beginning and middle stages of spiritual growth, it is helpful to perceive God as intimately personal and human-like and as something distinct from us.  At the same time, these personal images of God do not begin to touch the vast nature of our Divine Source.   Eventually, to truly embrace the fullness of the truth of Oneness, and of love as our true nature, we have to look beyond these personal images to something more infinite.  Looking to the deeper translation of the term Abwoon that Jesus so frequently used to address God, we begin to get a glimpse of the vastness of the Divine.

O Though from whom the breath of life flows and is present in all forms of vibration and light.           (Prayers of the Cosmos, Neil Douglas-Klotz)

It is difficult to grasp the transcendent, indwelling and infinite nature of God with our human mind, and so we have to reach beyond our minds to the lived experience in order to grasp this truth.  The writings attributed to John best express the fullness of this lived experience.  It is clear through these writings that the author had a deeply personal and experiential relationship with the I Am.  It is through this experience that the concept of God as love itself is most clearly articulated.

God is love, and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him.  In this is love brought to perfection among us, that we have confidence on the day of judgment because as he is, so are we in this world.  There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear because fear has to do with punishment, and so one who fears is not yet perfect in love.  We love because God loved us first.       1 John 4: 16b – 19

As the author of John experienced, God is love.  Applying this expanded understanding to our existing relationship with God, it stands to reason that if God is love, it is in fact, love that created us.  As such, the love that is God lives in and through us.  In this way, not only are we loved, we are love itself.  Love is, in fact, our rightful inheritance, our true nature, our identity.  We are able to live out of this true nature when we remember that we are One with God and hence, one in love.

HOLY VIRTUE – Compassion

As we accept the truth that we are One in love with God we become content in the love that we are and we no longer feel compelled to seek that love outside of us.  This love-filled contentment invites us to explore the rewriting of our fairytales.  As we (the protagonist) come to know the love that is deep within ourselves, we exponentially increase our ability to live in the truth of this love.  Knowing that we are comprised of love, we no longer need to build defenses around ourselves, and the fortresses around our hearts begin to disintegrate and we find that we can trust ourselves and others.  Understanding that conditional love can never be a source of fulfillment, we no longer find ourselves compelled to seek the handsome prince or beautiful princess that will be able to give us our happily ever after.  Love, we remember, is who we are. As we grow in this confidence, we are able to go out into the world reflecting the love that we now know within ourselves.  It is here that we shall experience the truest expression of the virtue of compassion.  It is here that we shall find our happily ever after.

Authentic Freedom is also available as an online course, facilitated by Lauri Ann Lumby.  Learn more HERE. 

 

Posted in Weekly Lesson

How We Are to Love

Posted in Authentic Freedom, Freedom, Jesus, self-actualization

Scripture as a Manual for Ascension

For the past 26 years I have studied scripture.  Beyond the scholarly, historical, contextual, sociological and theological applications of scripture, I have explored scripture through the practices of contemplative meditation and prayer.  I have also studied the Kabbalistic (the mystical branch of Judaism) interpretation of scripture.  With all of this, I have come to believe that scripture is much more than an interpretive history of the Jewish people, and much, much more than an historical account of Jesus’ life and teachings. In fact, to a true historian, scripture is neither of these.  Instead, as the Kabbalists would suggest, and which Jesus seemed to teach and demonstrate:

Scripture is an instructional guide for the evolution of human consciousness.

In more popular terms, scripture is a manual for ascension (self-actualization).  (Read here by ascension isn’t enough)

In order to approach scripture as an instructional manual and guide for the evolution of human consciousness, we first have to remove it from the trappings of patriarchal conditioning and control.

  • We have to move beyond the image of the Divine as the “old man in the sky” whose approval we have to earn and who will punish us for our human transgressions.
  • We have to move past the interpretations that mean to control us through intimidation and fear, threats of punishment and eternal damnation.
  • We have to keep scripture in its proper place, written in a specific time for a specific audience for a specific reason.
  • We also have to understand the literary genres which are in use – myth, allegory, poetry, song lyrics, reflective and interpretive history.
  • We have to take Jesus off the pedestal and we might even have to (gasp) stop looking to him as having saved us from sin or death and instead look at how he teaches us how to live!
  • We have to forget the idea that Jesus came to start a new religion or start a church. Jesus was a Jew and he remained a Jew.  His followers were practicing Jews until they were kicked out of the Temple.  Then they continued their Jewish practices in their own home, adding Jesus’ teachings to the mix.  None of what we now call sacraments were original to Jesus – these were all Jewish practices which the later Church decided to make their own.
  • Finally, we are invited to examine scripture as the Mystics, Prophets and Kabbalists would have (another topic for another time – was Jesus in fact a Kabbalist?) – through meditation and prayer, seeking out the message for each of us as individuals, along with the universal message of LOVE.

When we look past the patriarchal, fear, power and control trappings of scripture, we find a book that describes through myth, metaphor, allegory, story-telling (of people who may or may not have lived), poetry, song lyrics, and the remembered teachings of Jesus, how to evolve our human consciousness from a place of fear to an attitude and experience of LOVE.  Through scripture, we are invited to move beyond the natural fears and limitations of the human experience so that we can remember our truth nature as:

 

One with the Divine (Love)

One within ourselves

One with each other

One with all of creation

 

This experience of Oneness is the “salvation” that Jesus attempted to bring. Jesus had come to experience this “salvation” (authentic freedom) within himself, which he then attempted to teach others.  Using the manual that had been given to him (Hebrew scripture), he tried to show his friends the way.  After his death, his friends tried to remember what Jesus had taught them, created their own written interpretations of his words, and then went out to share this with others.

The true mission and intention of Jesus’ message got lost somewhere along the way. But in this case, what was lost is easily found.  When we follow the formula above, we are able to see the “ascension manual” hiding in plain sight.  To illustrate this, I have taken a passage from Paul’s letter to the Thessalonians and reinterpreted it in a language that we might more easily understand:

 

Concerning times and seasons, brothers and sisters,
you have no need for anything to be written to you.
For you yourselves know very well
that the day of transformation will come like a thief at night.
When people are saying, “Peace and security,”
then sudden disaster comes upon them,
like labor pains upon a pregnant woman,
and they will not escape.
But you, brothers and sisters, are not in ignorance,
for that day to overtake you like a thief.
For all of you are children of the light
and children of the day.
We are also of the night and of the darkness

But we are not blind.  We see and we know.

Therefore, let us not remain blind as the rest do,
but let us stay alert and attentive.
For the Divine did not destine us for punishment,
but to gain freedom through what Jesus taught us,
who showed us the path,

so that we may live in freedom as he did.
Therefore, encourage one another and build one another up,
as indeed you do.

 

Here are Paul’s original words as translated in the New International Version – Catholic Edition.

Concerning times and seasons, brothers and sisters,
you have no need for anything to be written to you.
For you yourselves know very well
that the day of the Lord will come like a thief at night.
When people are saying, “Peace and security,”
then sudden disaster comes upon them,
like labor pains upon a pregnant woman,
and they will not escape.

But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness,
for that day to overtake you like a thief.
For all of you are children of the light
and children of the day.
We are not of the night or of darkness.
Therefore, let us not sleep as the rest do,
but let us stay alert and sober.
For God did not destine us for wrath,
but to gain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ,
who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep
we may live together with him.
Therefore, encourage one another and build one another up,
as indeed you do.

1 Thes 5: 1-6, 9-11

If you are interested in learning more about finding the ascension manual hiding in scripture, take a look at my Authentic Freedom online course.  Click on the image below to learn more.

Authentic Freedom online course

Or read my book Authentic Freedom – Claiming a Life of Contentment and Joy.  Find it on Amazon.

Posted in Weekly Lesson

Following Jesus’ Example is Hard

Anyone can call themselves a Christian.  In fact, 2.3 billion people do (Pew Research 2015). Calling oneself a Christian, or proclaiming “Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior,” however, has absolutely nothing to do with our ability to follow Jesus’ example.  Following Jesus is easy.  Followi...

Posted in Weekly Lesson

Celebrating Mary Magdalene

This Monday, July 22nd is honored by the Catholic Church as the Feast of Mary Magdalene.  While the institutional Church has its own characterization of the Magdalene, here we celebrate and honor her as more than just Jesus’ disciple; but also as devoted student, initiate, co-equal partner,  (possib...

Posted in Weekly Lesson

The Rocks and Stones are Singing

Last week I promised a piece on “the new monasticism.”  That piece will have to wait as our normal lesson is being interrupted by this special message from our sponsor – the Divine – within, without, and all around.  Especially within you and me….AND as we are to now understand, the whole entire universe.  In […]

Posted in Inspiration, Jesus, Spiritual Formation

When Approaching Scripture – Perspective is Everything

…when it comes to scripture; there will always be disagreement – especially if we are looking for objective truth. But again, this was not Jesus’ goal; neither should it be our own. For the purpose of our spiritual growth and development, all we can look for is how scripture is reflecting or revealing our own truth.  Case in point, the scripture passage below can be taken any number of ways, depending on our point of view, or on the agenda of one who is interpreting this passage for us.  Let’s start with a single line:

“Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him.”

For some, this passage points to exclusivity. God will ONLY love those who keep Jesus’ word.  For others this passage speaks of reward and punishment.  IF we keep Jesus’ word (what word exactly are we to keep?), God will love us, implying that if we do not keep Jesus’ word, God will no longer love us.  This one tiny line from John’s gospel has been used for two millennia to establish so-called Christian privilege and to justify persecution, condemnation and even the wholesale slaughter of “non-believers.”  Is this really what Jesus meant in these words?  If we believe that Jesus’ overriding message was of Love and of a Divine parent who loves without condition, then no, Jesus could not have meant these words to privilege anyone or to deny anyone of the unconditional and unmerited love of God.  But human beings, through their limited perspective chose otherwise.

The above is an excerpt from my (dot) Love weekly message.  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 Spiritual Direction

Do Not Fear the Darkness of Life

It has been said that courage is not the absence of fear, but is instead the ability to move forward in spite of our fear. THIS is the lesson and meaning of life and what Jesus came to teach us.  This courage is what we commemorate and give honor to in our Good Friday observance and what we are invited to embrace in our own lives.  Whether we profess Jesus, Mohammed, Moses, the Buddha, Amma, Anandamayima, the 13 Grandmothers, Spider Woman, Mother Mary, Mary Magdalene or any other formerly living human as our teacher, the lesson is the same:

Do not fear the darkness of life. Instead, let it lead you to freedom.

In every spiritual tradition, the invitation is the same – FREEDOM. Some describe this freedom as salvation.  Others speak of it as presence, bliss, oneness, unity, peace, or love.  No matter what word is used to describe this freedom, the sentiment is the same.  We are here to remember the freedom we once knew and will once again know and we are here to remember this freedom right here in the midst of our human experience.

Like Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. One of my favorite scenes from the life of Jesus.  Here he wrestled with his doubts and his fears.  Because of his foresight and wisdom, he had a sense of where his path was heading.  He knew there were those threatened by his presence and that if people truly believed what Jesus had come to know, many would lose their perceived place of power and privilege.  Jesus knew they plotted to kill him.  He was afraid.  Terrified.  And in this, he wondered if God really had his back.  Had he simply made it all up or was what had been revealed to him really true?  Jesus fought hard with these fears and doubts.  He was tempted to chuck it all and return to a normal human life.  Instead, through the agony of prayer, he found peace.  He discovered resolve.  He harnessed the deep well of courage within him to face his greatest fears – suffering and death.

But Jesus’ struggle didn’t end in the Garden. His fears surfaced over and over and over as he took one step at a time on the road to Calvary.  When accused.  While on trial.  When he was whipped and beaten.  When the soldiers placed the crown of throne on his head.  When we was given the cross to carry through the city of Jerusalem and up the winding road to Golgotha.  As people mocked and ridiculed him, spit on him, called his names.  When he fell.  When he stumbled.  Every step of the way rose up another fear.  Jesus did not overcome his fears, he walked through them. He faced them.  He bore them.  And he walked.  One step at a time.  As the executioners nailed his body to the cross.  As the cross was lifted and his body sunk under its own weight, crushing his lungs.  Terrified.  Feeling abandoned and betrayed.  Suffering the excruciating death of crucifixion.  Jesus was afraid.  In pain.  Suffering.  In his suffering he turned to God and this is where he found his courage.  Where he found his acceptance and peace.

Hopefully none of us will have to face the death of crucifixion, but fear, suffering, and death are all consequences of the human condition. We cannot escape it.  We will all experience suffering.  We will all face challenge and difficulty.  We will all experience loss, betrayal, and death.  This is the human condition and this is why the Jesus story is so important – for all of us.  In the crucifixion narrative and the events leading up to it, Jesus shows us how to face the darkness of life.  He shows us how to find our way through our fears (he never promises the elimination of fear) and most importantly, how to walk on in spite of our fears.

 

What darkness are you currently facing?

How are you being invited to be with your fears and in being with them finding the courage to walk on?

 

Authentic Freedom is a protocol inspired by Jesus which shows us how to face and move through our fears in our own journey toward freedom.  Learn more HERE.