I’ve now been back in the US for coming up on 2 weeks after an amazing 9.5 weeks in Australia, during which time I attended the Understanding God’s Loving Laws 3.2 Assistance Group presented by Jesus and Mary Magdalene, followed by the Divine Truth Training Program.
As I gaze out my window at the snow outside here in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA–a stark contrast to the near 100-degree F Aussie summer I just came from–and feel about writing this blog, I realize I could write a book about what I learned in education and about myself while there. It’s hard to know where to start! I can always write more later about particular specific topics, but still, I feel like I will be reflecting on everything for years and still not have digested it all. How do I do the experience justice via writing? And when I think about the magnitude of the gift I was given, I feel like I’ve been one of the luckiest people of the last 2000 years. And so with that in my heart, I think, well, I’ll try to share as much as I possibly can in the case it might also benefit others for me to do so.
This is probably a good place to recommend Mary’s blog post which discusses the groups, training program and more, as well as a couple blogs Eloisa has written mentioning it as well. Mary’s blog discusses criteria and the process for the upcoming New Volunteer Induction Program, so check that out if you find the idea of volunteering appealing. Some great pics of our stay to be seen on their blogs too!
I’d been to one weekend seminar Jesus and Mary gave in November 2013–almost exactly three years earlier–in San Diego, California, so this was my first Assistance Group and first time to Australia. It was so wonderful to see Jesus and Mary again after so long, and to meet the volunteer team and others who I’d seen on videos or who I’d interacted with before via email or forums. It was incredible to be able to get a glimpse into just how much preparation goes into each group and how much love, care, and time is taken in creating the material. I was also amazed to witness the full technical operations for the group: it is truly massive. There is so much work that goes into it prior to it happening (apparently over 500 hours by Jesus and Mary!), and then there’s all that goes into the live recording hours of the group itself, and then J&M and Lena and other volunteers are often working still when most of us have a day off during the AG and they often don’t have days off. I just came to appreciate it all so much more.
I loved the material in the Assistance Group and I loved watching Jesus and Mary’s love and enthusiasm for the subjects. The material itself many times touched my heart and brought me to tears, and at other times, I was quite shut down and struggled to pay full attention. It makes me sad that I missed fully absorbing as much as possible while physically there, which happens when we have resistance to what’s being taught and are suppressing our own emotions about it. Spirit influence can shut us down too, though that also only happens through our suppressing our own feelings. It’s such a gift to be able to watch the groups again on youtube later; I’ve been looking forward to them so much. I highly recommend watching all of this third group. As Jesus and Mary say, it contains some of the most important information for our entire existence both here and later in the spirit world. Who am I kidding… I highly recommend watching every minute of every subject of their material! Nothing is better!!
After the group, I helped a bit in the packing up day (holy equipment!) and then my friend Nicky from the UK and I headed off to the countryside with Tristan, where we would begin the Training Program along with the third overseas participant from Barbados, David, as well as several local participants.
In my first weeks, I stayed with Tristan for a week followed by Catherine for a week, and was so grateful to have been able to spend extensive time with both of them in their homes. Thank you both so much for hosting me!
Our first task was to deep-clean the Learning Center house which the three of us would eventually stay on. I like cleaning and so this day was, while long and physically taxing, mostly enjoyable for me. I’ll never forget my first longer chat with Eloisa–about soulmates–while I chipped off hardened mud wasp nests from the toilet with a knife on all fours and she stood in the shower scrubbing it top to bottom.
Cleaning is as important of a task to have a good attitude about as learning software or shoveling things outside. We had another cleaning day as part of the training towards the end of our trip of the studio and Jesus and Mary’s home which we all utilized during the training.
It was incredible to learn about all the technology and software used for DT from Jesus and Lena, as well as Igor and Mary. In the first weeks our other activities and education included unpacking all the equipment from the Assistance Groups and organizing and labeling what was to be stored till the next group, learning about the particular cameras that are used for both groups and studio recording, and how those cameras are all connected with other aspects of the recording and an overview of the entire recording flow. Lena and Igor gave presentations on attitudes to service and what loving volunteering really is about. Mary gave us a talk with additions and amendments to their presentation, as well as a talk called “Good Practices for Presentations”. I really enjoyed hearing about how to, non-addictively and with love, give good talks from her.
I also got out in nature and went with groups led by Cornelius twice to the Bunya National Forest, a subtropical rainforest with incredible plant and animal life which Jesus said that long ago, was how a lot of Queensland was, over a much larger area, even as far away as Wilkesdale where the Learning Center is and where Jesus and Mary live, though it’s an hour’s drive away. A lot of Australia’s countryside has been depleted by agriculture–primarily animal agriculture. Cornelius invited us to consider how God created an ecosystem like that to work and where God’s Principles could be seen in it, and how that kind of terrain could potentially be restored long-term in depleted areas nearby.
We had several sessions of being taught and having Q&A’s about sound editing from Jesus and it was so cool to watch him work and hear him talk about it. Of course, he’s got decades and decades of expertise in computer technology and so many other areas in technology; I just got a glimpse really into the incredible amount he knows. I personally didn’t even know what a hertz was a few months ago (when I told Jesus this, he joked, “A rental car company!”), much less about decibels and how to remove “clicks” in audio and what compression and timestamps are for, so it was a steep learning curve for me. But, over the course of the weeks I started to really enjoy it. Fixing things–audio included–is fun! There’s something crazy satisfying about seeing a problem and then clicking a few buttons and BAM–it’s vanished!
Jesus explained to us that sound is the most important part and so that is why so much time is spent on it–a lot more time than the video editing. And basically the whole time I was there, Jesus was putting in massive amounts of hours doing that editing on the computer, day in and day out, usually for 12-hour days. Yet another of the countless things I was able to see which made me that much more astounded at the work that goes into producing every youtube video and downloadable audio file. It’s so easy in our world of entitlement and instant gratification to just go watch the DT videos on youtube, which are provided for free, and not even think of the amount of effort and time that goes into not only producing them, but producing them at such a high quality. I really can’t say enough about what really goes on behind the scenes. We also got to learn some about the mixer and switcher from Jesus as well.
Another part of our training was to give a ten-minute presentation in the studio discussing some aspects of love and using at least one of six Bible verse options Jesus and Mary picked for us, which we’d then get feedback from them on our structure, delivery, content, and our personal emotions that affected them. Soon after, Jesus gave a wonderful talk on how to give good public presentations. I was still living in a lot of fear of doing one myself (more on that later), but I really just adored hearing him talk about it. I was like, “OMG I’m learning about teaching from the ultimate master teacher ever!” We learned about flow of material, audience considerations, delivery, structure, preparation, emotions and addictions, and so much more. It gave me such good stuff to consider when creating my own presentation.
My own presentation preparation was one of the more emotional sagas of my time there. When I first got the assignment, I just felt terror. I put off developing my presentation for a little while. When I finally desired to feel about what I might want to talk about, I had some ideas come and began creating a structure for it. I started to feel a bit better as I wrote things out; enjoying playing around with the organization of it and prioritizing what I wanted to say. I rehearsed it by myself a number of times and felt pretty good about it. Then, my Learning Center housemates Nicky and Dave and I decided to rehearse all of ours with each other. When I got up to do mine, I completely disconnected from myself and somehow my 10-12 minute talk went to 5 minutes. Every second of it I wanted to run away. Afterwards, huge emotions for me came up about not wanting anyone to look at me or watch me, feeling like everything I say is a waste of time, and I have nothing of value to give–ever. I went away and had a sob for a couple hours about it.
When presentation day came around, compared to how I was in my first rehearsal, it was miles better! I didn’t forget half of what I wanted to say and I was more connected to myself than the first time. However, I have a such long way to go with those fears and feelings about myself, and so Jesus told me I was very nervous still and wasn’t being myself in my talk, and gifted me with some reasons emotionally why that was. But I also had this weird feeling like, hmm, I have such terror about this and yet I can kind of feel like if I get through some emotions I might actually really enjoy public speaking! Jesus also gave me a really great explanation about one of the verses that I’d misinterpreted (*facepalm*: misinterpreting Jesus’ quote to Jesus), so that was awesome to learn about as well. Note to self: feel about the real meaning Bible verses thoroughly!
Can I just say that almost everything I write here I feel like could be its own long blog post. This blog ended up being about 8 hours to do and I feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface. It’s ok y’all, I’ll eventually recap it all in detail over like five years time…
But yes, the presentation days were awesome. Eight or nine of us did them, and I just loved watching everyone’s talks and learning from the feedback Jesus and Mary gave all of us afterwards. I learned heaps and heaps from those days and it was just such a gift to have that opportunity to practice sharing Divine Truth with an audience and then be given feedback and direction about how to do it better next time. I also got to try out switching the video live during one of the presentations, which takes lots of attention and practice to know what camera angles to choose when and why, but I thought it was really fun.
Another major aspect of the training was about environmental restoration. Jesus gave another stellar talk (I feel like I’m needing a thesaurus now so I don’t have too many “awesome”‘s and “amazing”‘s in this blog) on restoring land and eco systems. We have all impacted the environment severely, primarily through eating animal products and also through various other addictions we have in our lifestyles and consumerism. Because most of us have consumed so much meat, dairy, eggs, leather, etc., we have compensation for that. What Jesus was wanting to hit home with us was that it is no easy task–in fact it is extremely difficult and it takes incredibly long–to restore an environment that’s been decimated. In his presentation we learned about how certain plants play certain roles in the recovery of an area, and how to foster that recovery with various methods. We talked seeds, water, soil, how insects and animals help restore land, and tons more. I personally have such a passion for educating people on the main way we destroy the planet–through consuming animal products–and also I love nature and eco restoration, so this all really excited me.
And then, it was time to take it from the classroom to the outdoors, and we had several days of long manual labor, which included shoveling and moving softwood and hardwood chips, some days for eight hours in the heat. I really enjoy manual labor as I’ve always been into physical fitness, though often heat/humidity makes me feel oppressed, and so there were times that, because I didn’t want to feel how I felt about it, I instead went out of body and wasn’t connected to myself but rather just doing the rote movements of shoveling and physical labor but not feeling. Circumstances like hard manual labor in heat can trigger us into emotions we have that are good for us to feel through if we’re humble to them–I wasn’t.
After a couple days of this labor, I thought to myself, “If every person had to do an equivalent amount of compensation via manual labor eco restoration immediately after having a burger or a glass of milk, a lot more people would be vegan!”
We got some great tours from Mary and Jesus around their property about what the land used to look like, how it’s progressed so far and how they’ve done it, and shown various methods and experiments they’ve done on their property. One of my favorite parts was Mary showing us a huge trench they’d had dug uphill from where their fruit trees are. This ditch was originally very deep, and it was also quite long, and she explained how they’re throwing in organic material which retains water so the water soaks in the ground rather than sliding off the surface of the hardened dirt terrain. Despite how dry it is there, the fruit trees downhill from this trench were green. They were “happy little trees” as famed American artist Bob Ross would say.
Cornelius also gave us a tour of his property, which is adjacent to Jesus and Mary’s, and what he’s working on there to restore it. He taught us a great deal about human manure and how it can be used to help restore land as well. Pete also gave us a cool presentation on waterless container gardening. There are so many cool ideas to try out and it’s such a gift a lot of the guys there in Queensland have been experimenting with so many things so we can learn what hasn’t worked and what’s worked better. And hopefully come up with our own experiments!
Eloisa and Tristan gave a really interesting talk on education and how God’s Way of Education for both children and parents might look like and the experiments in education they’re already doing in that area with Eloisa and Pete’s three kids. I’m so excited to see what these guys continue to create. We got a digital tour also by Barb, who heads up the transcription and translation teams–another massive volunteer undertaking.
I just absolutely loved learning everything. I felt like I was soaking up all this new information and every single part of it mattered so much for such a bigger important purpose. No learning was superfluous, every morsel was vital and interesting. Sometimes, I struggled to understand the full scope of things, particularly the technological side, though I realized that was mostly about my own feelings about not being capable and my fear of making mistakes, particularly since technology is an area I usually feel comfortable with and enjoy. But I started putting pressure on myself to understand everything perfectly, yesterday, and so that’s where I stumbled and in the end actually prevented absorption of new information at times. Overall I felt a bit like I was in college again, trucking my notebook in every day to learn totally new things to me. It was great.
I also got to attend in-person the mentor meetings for those desiring to share Divine Truth with the world that I’ve been so lucky to be a part of for the last six months. Mary led two great ones while there, one primarily about self-responsibility (following off what we began to learn about it in the AG) and another primarily about unloving attitudes towards Jesus. All so important for any of us to effectively and lovingly share God’s Way, because how can we share God’s Way when we’re still majorly opposing living it ourselves?
And of course, it was wonderful to hang out with everyone in various casual settings at shared meals and informal hangouts of various kinds, whether swimming in dams or hiking some great little mountains. Speaking of shared meals though, I gotta be real here: if I felt like wouldn’t be disproportionate for me to post 30 photos of the incredible food I ate there, well, I would. It’s like there’s this secret little grove of incredible vegan chefs hiding away in rural Queensland. They’re like a delicious pot of gold at the end of a rainbow and my waistline by the end of the trip proved it!
At this point in the blog, I’m thinking to myself, wow, I feel like I just recapped the activities themselves in about 1% of the detail I could, and I haven’t really even gotten to the emotional part of it, the how did I feel part of it, and really, as we were reminded often during the program, our attitudes and emotions are far more important than how much we know skill-wise.
I am tentative to share about how I felt about things, which is partly because I feel again daunted how to write that all out, as that could hypothetically be a really long blog post too. But also, I have a set of emotions which makes me not want to share how I personally felt and rather just hide behind a recap of the events themselves and then sign off. I want to share the info with you, but not myself. However, this is one area I was gifted a lot of feedback on from Jesus and Mary and others while there, and is a big area of growth for me to come. And that is: I want to hide from the world, I want to not be taken notice of, I want to not be known.
It only took a few days for several people to point out I was not showing my nature, was not opening up and being myself. At first this was a surprise to me. I knew I’d been really shy most of my life but I didn’t realize it was such an issue; I was just being how I was all the time, but others were sensitive to it immediately–more sensitive to it than I was even with myself. I learned that when I am subdued in fear and want to hide, it actually places a demand on the environment to work to get to know me, and it makes others have to put quite an effort forth to know what I really think and feel about things, which is unloving to them and myself. I also keep my heart closed to others until I’m sure they’re trustworthy, which sadly is something I did even with the most trustworthy and loving people in the world–Jesus and Mary. I missed a lot of opportunities to connect with them and others and to enjoy myself both in personal interactions as well as in the learning and activities themselves. On one hand I feel quite sad and regretful about that missed opportunity, but on the other hand given how suppressed and oppressed I’ve been in my life, I was the most open and the most myself I’ve ever been while there.
But of course, everyone was only impossibly kind and gentle in their helping me see these issues. Recalling the love and care it took to not only notice, but the fact they desired to know the real me… well, I get really emotional every time I feel about it. I received such immense gifts of friendship, love and care–I daresay the first experiences of real friendship, love and care that I’ve ever experienced in my life from other people. Jesus and Mary helped me see why I’ve felt apologetic for everything about myself, like I’m a bother and an imposition to everyone, bad about myself and terrified of connecting to myself.
My avoidance of and living in fears of various kinds also dictated many of my experience and choices. I was afraid of sharing myself with others, and also another of my biggest fears–making mistakes and doing things wrong–affected things heavily at times. When I live in this fear, I defer to others who may or may not know better than me, and then in that process I in fact made more mistakes and contributed to more problems, which is precisely what I was trying to avoid. Even if a person does know more than me, deferring to them out of fear can mean I lean on them in an addictive way to tell me what to do and spell things out in a way they shouldn’t have to, which is a form of demand on the person who knows more and an avoidance of my own self-responsibility. This terror of getting it wrong also causes me to not take action, and not experiment, which affects everything in my life and affected how I behaved in pressured environments during the training.
There were also instances where my fears of various kinds–some which I’ve mentioned above as well as others–caused me to not be generous and to force others to serve me because I was too busy living in my own desire to hide, engage minimally, not stand out, defer to others. In this way my fear makes me very selfish and self-centered and at times oblivious to others. I realized that truthfully, fear always makes me self-centered, every time. It causes me to think only of how to protect myself from my fear and how to serve it as my god, not how to love and serve others.
As I mentioned before, I will be digesting and absorbing the experience for a long while to come, and all the emotions I need to work on in order to get closer to God and share God’s Truth will also take a long while to come. But the experience for me helped me to connect to the fact that yes, sharing Divine Truth is what I want to do! It was the best 9.5 weeks of my life. In my heart and soul I can feel all I want to do is contribute in any way I can for others to know that God’s truth–and a relationship with God–is available to them if they want it. I don’t know God really yet and I don’t know much about love either, but I know Jesus and Mary’s teachings of God’s Truth have changed my life and are continuing to change it and I’m so passionate about it when I bypass some of my fear and bad feelings about myself.
So, my desires are these: I want to return to Australia to continue training and learning how to help share Divine Truth. There’s a visa for those still under a certain age bracket which would allow me to go back for 1-2 years, which will largely just depend on my having the funds/donations to do so. In the meantime, I’m wanting to face some of my fears about sharing myself and the full scope of what I’m passionate about with God’s Truth. This is something I want to do in general, as well as in my current work as a nutritionist, where I assist people with going vegan and dealing with food addictions and eating disorders. I’ll also keep writing on this blog, and, though the idea makes me so nervous, I’m thinking perhaps to create some video “vlogs” as well, potentially both with my health/nutrition/food addiction work but also regarding anything else about Divine Truth.
Thank you to God, Jesus, and Mary for the massive gift of this experience. Thank you Jesus and Mary, for everything they do for all of us–I don’t know how to begin to express how grateful I feel for their gifts to us, for who they are, for what they’ve discovered and are now teaching us. Thank you to everyone who gifted me the experience with training, hosting me at your homes, hosting me at the Learning Center, and so much more. Thank you Lena, Catherine, Eloisa, Peter, Cornelius, Igor, Tristan and everyone else who gifted their resources, time, love and care to me. I love you all so much.