September Update: Pausing DT Volunteering

Hi Friends,

Some of you have messaged me wondering about how things are going in Australia and what I’ve been up to. Thanks for your interest in wanting to know what’s happening for me–it’s really nice. So I thought I’d write an update post now.

For the moment, I have paused my volunteering with Divine Truth and God’s Way.

There were various major issues of love and truth within myself highlighted to me in my 4.5 months volunteering and being involved (between March 2018 and July 2018). I’ve been very resistant to moving on these issues, and am often still choosing to sin in the same way even after being told about the various problems, including, but not limited to, the issues I mentioned in my most recent blog about country-based injuries.

IMG_5397
Jesus & Mary & Elo: recording in the DT studio

At the moment, the truth of where I am at right now–previously my facade would have insisted otherwise–is that I don’t really want to give and serve, want lots of selfish addictions met, and don’t have much interest in a relationship with God, and in most areas, I don’t want to do things God’s Way. You can probably see that it will be difficult to be a loving and effective volunteer for God’s Way or Divine Truth when these emotions and attitudes are still within me. And so, I will not be able to continue to volunteer until I can progress on some of these issues.

Jesus and Mary explained that the current issues which prevent me from being a good volunteer will take some time to address, and that it is important for me to take that time to properly feel about them without feeling time pressure, particularly since these issues are going to be some harder things for me to address than some of the things I’ve worked through so far since finding DT.

So, my goal now is to address the main issues that were highlighted to me which affect my being a productive, effective and loving volunteer, and afterwards to return to volunteering–and Australia–in the (hopefully near) future with more of a feeling of service, initiative, and a stronger feeling for God.

In the meantime, there are a lot of opportunities and situations where I can challenge many issues of love and truth, and feel through many emotions, such as within my business, finances, partner relationship, family interactions and more. I want to maximize the Law of Attraction opportunities that God will bring me during the next phase of my progression.

I want to write more about the feedback I received during this visit, and more about where my true condition is at, and how the whole experience was for me. However at the moment I am very much “in the thick of it”, looking at the issues, feeling about them, exploring what’s really within me emotionally, and why those issues are there. I also will need time to wrap my head around the whole experience during the months I was involved, which was a very significant experience of my life.

I want to be able to talk about the experience I’ve had with good clarity, and with more of God’s Perspective on it. I also want to share more about the injuries themselves after having some headway into facing them, and even making some progress on the causes of the issues.

IMG_5084
Naturally, I save my most impressive fashion statements for mulch-forking.

I want to share some public thanks: I want to thank Jesus and Mary for inviting me to Australia for this experience and coordinating a lot of details about the trip, and for their generous assistance personally to me: they have spent a great deal of time with me, assisting me to see my issues, and this has been a huge gift. I also want to thank Lena for hosting me in her home for almost all of my stay, and being one of the main people who trained me, and who gifted lots of time in both job training, and in personal assistance. Thank you also to Eloisa, who also gifted a great deal of her time training me in the studio, and to both Elo and Tristan, who spent countless hours in the huge effort of running the 9-week Volunteer Selection Project I participated in and who also helped me personally with feedback. Thanks also to Catherine for hosting me at her home for several weeks as well and for her help and guidance.

I always like wrapping up my blog posts here with DT material recommendations, so I would like to recommend videos about Truth, and about developing a love for Truth. For me right now, I’m going back to the fundamentals: the fundamentals I arrogantly thought I understood already, but actually am rather clueless about. Jesus and Mary’s material about Truth is hitting me in a different way now!

20170808-1210 Sonya Encourages a Longing for Truth

Resistance to Truth videos

Love & Truth Principles videos

 

Till next time!

Courtney

Facing American Country-Based Injuries: An Introduction

“America is the greatest country in the world.”  -Muhammad Ali

During this trip to Australia, one of the main sets of emotional injuries I have which have been highlighted to me by Jesus and Mary have to do with country-based injuries from being born and raised in America.

Here are some bits of feedback and truth I have received from Jesus about my country-based injuries and attitudes, which also apply to many other Americans, or in some cases, all other Americans as well:

  • A demand that other countries satisfy western countries’ demands.
  • People of western countries tend to believe they are superior.
  • Belief that America doesn’t have the problems that other countries have; we are less violent and more law-abiding (it actually only appears this way due to a collective facade).
  • The USA is a bully as a country and has a bullying mentality stemming from a sense of superiority.
  • This superiority is within every person in America.
  • We have had a feeling that our country is the best country in the world (which is not actually true).
  • We want our country to be responsible for our safety, security, welfare, food, clothing and more (we do not want to take personal responsibility for these things and most Americans believe they are far more personally responsible than they really are).
  • An attitude of “I want what I want”… and when I don’t get what I want, I will get angry.
  • On top of this, myself and many people in America have a problem with thinking we are in a better condition personally than we actually are, and an addiction to a facade that we don’t have lots of rage and expectation.
  • Many Americans, including myself, learn to cover over our issues with a facade of niceness that covers over a very dark, evil direction emotionally.
  • For many Americans, myself included, as soon as a bit of feedback is given, we pull back from the interaction to avoid any additional feedback which would challenge the facade and addictions.
  • Many Americans, myself included, use manipulative ways to avoid feedback.
  • The USA will not be a nice place to be should there be economic upheaval, earth change events or events regarding country-based revolution because everyone there has feelings they should always get their addictions met.

I decided to look around the magical, endless land of the interwebs as I was writing this. I came across an article which cites a poll of American citizens that concluded,

“A majority of the public (85%) says either that the United States ‘stands above all other countries in the world’ (29%) or that it is ‘one of the greatest countries, along with some others’ (56%).”

manhattan-336591_1280

Before coming to Australia this time, I hadn’t spent much time outside America with the exception of a couple of weeks or months here and there to other first-world countries. I did spend a day in a poor part of Mexico when I was a teenager and looking back, my American snobbery and superiority was in full swing within my head: “They live in those kinds of houses?” “Doesn’t anyone follow traffic laws here?” “I’m so glad I don’t live in this country.” In America I’ve been surrounded by everyone who pretty much has the same attitudes as I do, and so this is in part why I didn’t see how I act these injuries out all the time. After all, if every person in the USA has them and we all agree with each other, who will pull us up on them? (Ideally, God, if we wanted to hear the truth about it, which I personally don’t).

I would like to write a series of blogs on the issue of American country-based injuries over time as I hopefully work through my own. For this first blog, I have been unsure about which country-based injuries to start with. You see, if I am to share from personal experience, I could share anything from what it’s like to grow up in a military family with many members who been sent on missions overseas, right through to what it’s like to grow up with attitudes that you shouldn’t have to stand very long in a line to buy something at a store.

And so I have debated: discuss issues such as my family and many Americans’ attitudes towards military conquest in other countries? Or discuss how I expected to get lots of gifts for Christmas every year? But then I realize: these things are not unrelated. It is not an either/or scenario. In fact, the demands for gifts at Christmas may be part of the reason why we use military conquest to dominate and take from other countries. Perhaps the impatience of having to stand in a line reflects the same attitudes that cause America to disregard the welfare of poorer countries.

I am going to navigate writing about these issues the best I can with where I am currently at. And where I am at is not far into dealing with these problems. I don’t see how I act them out all the time and am often “surprised” when I am told, but this is because I don’t want to notice. I want what I want, and if I see what I’m doing from God’s Perspective, then I may not get what I want. My attitude at the moment is, No thank you God, you can take your conscience mechanism back with you out the door, thank you very much, I don’t want to know what I’m doing is wrong!

I also don’t feel how sinful it is to justify and act in these emotions. If I did, I might want to change them. However, at the moment I don’t care that much how my demands damage others and myself and often doubt whether they really even do: that’s how strong the rage of my entitlement is to getting these addictions. When push comes to shove, and I might have to forego something I really want in order to be loving in a situation, in my current condition I will not choose the loving option. Rather I will push aside, step on and drain from whomever I need to in order to get it anyway. In fact, I actually find those whom, through their own injuries, will give me what I want, and then manipulate them to get what I want, thereby exploiting others’ weaknesses in order to fulfill my addictions. And on top of this, I have a well-developed facade to pretend I don’t have these kinds of motivations.

I am only a tiny way out of full-fledged denial. I am still in denial, maybe just a smidgen less than I was six months ago. But maybe at some point I will decide to sincerely work through these problems, in which case maybe some of the things I learn in that process could assist other Americans to do the same.

nasa-43566-unsplash-e1533208879531.jpg

I thought to start, I’ll share a bit of background about my own life. If my understanding from Jesus is correct, it seems that the above bullet-pointed issues at the top of this blog are ones most or all Americans have to some extent. However, I want to be clear that my personal experience and resulting emotions are obviously not perfectly representative of all Americans. It is a diverse country with many residents who are significantly less “privileged” than I am, to use a common sociological term. After all, I am white, heterosexual, able-bodied, and grew up economically in the middle-class and within the most accepted religion in America. There are many Americans who have far less privilege than I do and their experiences growing up were far less privileged than mine were.

However, I also know that there are millions of people who did grow up very similar or somewhat similar to myself, where a similar set of attitudes was taught to them in childhood, and so my theory is that sharing truthfully about the emotions I am seeing in myself, and where they came from, may help others to examine their own as well.

I grew up in a quintessential, white Republican patriotic household: the kind which to those in other countries may sound straight out of an Hollywood movie, and yet is accurately representative of a very large percentage of families. My family was a military family who celebrated patriotic holidays–and all holidays for that matter–to their fullest commercial and festive capacity, drove a Jeep while listening to country music, my Dad owned a gun, we went to a tiny Methodist church every Sunday, and also regularly went to real church: watching American football on TV and the parties associated with it.

My dad was a fighter jet pilot in the Air Force military and retired only a few years ago as a colonel, a fairly high-ranking in the Air Force. My dad’s father before him was an engineer who worked for a company that developed military jets and otherwise contracted to engineer for the military. My dad’s family was Methodist Christian and devoutly religious. My mom came from a family who loved–nay, worshipped–the American military as well. Many of her family are in the military and she couldn’t have been prouder to be a military wife to my dad. She was also brought up very religious and extremely conservative.

Both my parents, in varying degrees and varying ways, were racist, homophobic, religiously discriminatory, and generally had superior attitudes. There is a lot I could talk about with regards to the attitudes they tried to teach me towards certain groups of people which included other Americans, but for this blog post, I’ll stick to the attitudes about America versus other countries.

My family would have readily admitted half the attitudes Jesus mentioned Americans feel in my bullet points above, and they’d have stated them proudly. We were the best country in the world. Everyone else wasn’t as good as us, that was just a fact. America did everything better. We have a better society, and pretty much, God just loves Americans more. I remember when I first realized that my family believed America won wars over other countries because God favored us to do so and was baffled at the logic. I didn’t get it. If God loved everyone like the reverend in our church said, why did he want some of us to kill others and certain ones to die and others to live? I used to lay awake at night as a kid feeling very upset after learning there was such a thing as war and that this was supposedly the normal way the world worked. We never really volunteered anywhere, were taught about charity of any kind or serving anyone in any way. It was all about us and what we could get from life.

Looking back, it is like I grew up thinking that the USA was the only country in the world, or certainly the only one that really mattered. I was never sat down by my parents and told about people who existed in other places in the world that lived differently to us. I only absorbed that there was a world outside America (and Europe, which my parents liked) through osmosis as a I got older.  It was as if other people than white Americans and Europeans were as inconsequential to our lives as a random insect native to Connecticut that I’d never heard of.

Americans’ status in the world, and our lifestyle, was considered the norm. How we lived is how it should be, what we deserved and how God intended us to live. My family had the attitude that many “right-wing”/conservative Americans had: the other people in the world should just start working harder if they wanted a better life like we had. We pull ourselves up by the bootstraps, and so should they. It’s not our fault their lives suck; maybe they should work harder and be smarter and adopt some of our ways of life and systems which clearly work wonders. There was no regard whatsoever as to why other countries were in a terrible position or what America was doing to them. A word was never once spoken about this in my family.

As an American you may relate with some of my experience, or you might not. You might not have grown up as ignorant as I did or had parents who loved the military, guns and patriotism. But what if we take a microscope to our typical lives and look at the day-to-day choices which reflect the country-based injuries I bullet-pointed at the beginning of the blog? What can these attitudes look like even for those who didn’t grow up in the specific kind of American family that I did?

Well, let’s look at issues of demand related to getting what we want, when we want it, in our daily lives. I’ll use myself as an example.

When I was little, I got gifts every Christmas and every birthday. My parents had us make lists of what we wanted and I was irked if I didn’t get the ones I wanted most. My brothers and I expected them. We went trick-or-treating on Halloween as most Americans do, which is pretty much repeatedly showing up to strangers’ houses and knocking on their door and expecting them to give you candy. We even got some gifts on Easter and Valentine’s Day. In fact I feel my family is still upset at me that I have stopped engaging in the expected gift exchange during holidays.

andrew-neel-48762-unsplash (1)

My mom also did a lot of things for myself and my brothers. I didn’t have to do many chores except when my mom enforced outdoor manual work or cleaning as punishment on me. My brothers and I were not taught self-responsibility in a loving way. I feel my mom did most things for us because of a few key big injuries of her own, including one which created in my brothers and I huge expectations of others/life and a lack of responsibility: she endeavored to give us a far easier life than she had as a child living on a farm, as one of eight children, in a family far poorer than we were, and where she had to do a great deal more chores and duties than she ever asked us to do.

When I was little I observed demanding behavior in my parents: anger if they couldn’t buy what they wanted at a cheap price, frustration if the air-conditioning or heating in any situation wasn’t to their standard, upturned noses if a public bathroom wasn’t spotless, snide remarks under their breath as a waiter walked away if they took too long to bring the food out. At any suggestion we were privileged, my family defended: “Come on, we’re not rich! We have lived in homes with only one bathroom for the family of five! There are people with so much more than we have!” In fact, my parents have throughout their lives have carried a feeling that they’ve been hard done by and had resentment towards people with more assets and possessions than they have, or who they perceive have had it easier than they do, and this is also an attitude I have taken on.

When I first got feedback here in Australia about my American attitudes, I thought, hold on now! I have never had much money, I shop at thrift stores, I’ve owned one car in my life which I still have and it’s 20 years old and lots of its paint is peeled off. I’ve lived in tiny places and try to stretch out my haircuts as long as possible. And yet, I can see that my standards of what I should get, what is normal and reasonable to “need” from life, are extremely luxurious compared to what most people in the world have, though they are standards most Americans would also agree are reasonable as a baseline.

When I’ve noticed my American attitudes coming out, even here in Australia, I have nervously laughed to myself at certain times–or felt completely justified at other times. While Australia is still a first-world country, people are more self-sufficient and less addictions are met living in rural Australia. Some examples of my actual thoughts in certain situations:

As my friend Lena will tell you, when I went to the Australian grocery stores and they didn’t sell chipotle, I couldn’t believe it. In fact I can’t believe they don’t have 4 kinds of chipotle to choose from. I mean, who doesn’t stock chipotle? Isn’t that BASIC?

I order things online sometimes and I can’t believe there isn’t much free shipping. I mean, come on. Who pays for shipping anymore? Paying for shipping is so 1995.

giphy

Internet data is limited here. It had never occurred to me anyone in the world who had internet access (something I also consider a reasonable demand for anyone with a heartbeat) would ever have limits on the usage. You mean I can’t stream YouTube at 1080p while downloading a movie for later while video-Skyping my boyfriend? You mean unless I pay and arm and a leg, these things pretty much have to go out the window? How will I live? What is there to live for?

I’ve gotten somewhat used to using buckets and similar receptacles for human waste, my own and others, emptying them, burying the contents and cleaning the receptacles. If I had been told 5 years ago I’d have to do that, I’d have sooner sold my firstborn to the circus than consider such a lowly experience.

I imagine all it would take to trigger the average American into an emotional meltdown in a Volunteer Selection Project at a Learning Center would be to, for an extended period of time:

-Have no modern plumbing

-Have no home heating and cooling systems

-Have no access to any kind of internet nor roaming data access, nor television services

-Remove coffee & caffeine

I reckon at this point few of us would last very long without having some kind of emotional meltdown, much less adding to that situation work like cleaning homes, outdoor manual labor in the heat or cold and personal feedback to the mix.

I jest, because occasionally I find the issues a bit funny, but in all seriousness, these issues are widespread and our demands have far more implications globally that we imagine or than I personally yet understand. I am only slowly realizing the influence that the American demands for comfort, convenience, safety and security have on the rest of the world. While I grew up with an attitude that we were the best country, I never really realized how much many people in other countries aspire to be like us and to have the same addictions that we can readily fulfill. The sad thing is that many of these other countries, by aspiring to be like us, will actually be aspiring to darken their soul condition down to the collectively low soul condition of America.

When we justify and agree with each other in our demands and addictions, and then continue to act in them, we are assisting the rest of the world as well as ourselves to degrade in condition. America is the biggest bully of the world and at some point we are going to have to accept that and examine in what ways we each contribute to that. Many Americans, including myself, like to put all the blame on our politicians (particularly the other political party from whichever one we lean towards), religious leaders, or the super-rich of the country, but we need start looking at our own personal entitlement, greed and narcissism as individuals.

When you go to another place with less self-absorption and expectation, you find that these country-based injuries actually affect every day, practical interactions with others and decisions that need to be made. Country-based attitudes are not some nebulous, indeterminate set of injuries with unclear consequences and which we can easily dismiss. These emotions of demand, expectation and superiority play out daily and are actually some of the main issues degrading our individual and collective condition, and I’d guess in many cases even more than many other issues that as individuals we may want to think are our biggest issues personally.

I am pondering the idea that country-based injuries are childhood injuries and they have personal, deep pain associated with them; country-based injuries are not impersonal. They are not attitudes we can change just by watching documentaries about less privileged people in the world or buying fair-trade chocolate. My understanding is we will have to examine what emotions have been passed down to us from our parents, families, school teachers and others in our childhood and find the personal pain that must be associated with those emotional injuries, and go through an emotional process to shift things within ourselves.

Growing up, I saw some of the attitudes and emotions that my conservative, right-wing family had and I rebelled to some extent against them. As a teenager I got involved in human relations organizations dedicated to addressing discrimination and bias, in my adult life I’ve signed oodles of petitions against discrimination of many kinds, rejected organized religion, have gotten caught up in American politics and ended up adopting most of the polar-opposite political viewpoints of my family, and felt extremely triggered by political and religious figures in America that reminded me of my parents. I’ve wanted desperately to be nothing like my family and to reject the superiority, narcissism, and entitlement I saw in them.

And yet, I must come to terms with the fact that I still have a lot of these same issues myself. While I have rejected the extreme forms of superiority that my family justify proudly, I have to face that I am still left with many extreme addictions based on growing up in America. I feel entitled to things that I think I need but don’t actually need, I have a demand for others/the government/the world to make things easier and less scary for me, a lack of personal responsibility, a far bigger desire to take from the world than to give to it, a willingness to exploit others’ injuries to get what I want, and more. It is inevitable I will have these attitudes, and that I will in many ways be the same as my parents and the people in my childhood, because after all, they created my injuries.

grand-canyon-848246_960_720

I’ve also had a facade about being one of the “nice, reasonable Americans”. I like to tell myself I care about other countries and am informed about what’s happening in the world, and that I share nothing in common with what I consider the extremists in our country (who are a lot like my family). And yet, the idea that in actuality the soul condition of America is collectively quite dark, and that the collective evil in Americans is also within me at the moment, is something I don’t like to face. I find myself wanting to defend America and myself as being nicer than that, and yet continuing the way I am now will be the road into hell, even not withstanding any of my other unloving desires or poor attitudes that aren’t from country-based injuries.

Sometimes I still want to be in denial. “America can’t be that bad! It’s just our politicians and religious leaders that are the problem! It’s a great place, after all we’ve invented this thing, and we have that brilliant organization, and we do this good thing in the world! I love America! Don’t take my America away from me! We are very nice people who are responsible and well-rounded and law-abiding and just, well, great! And look at me, I’ve changed, I’m not like my family! I’m not superior and demanding!”

And I don’t know, maybe Americans do have some good qualities and attitudes and not all our achievements are off the backs of others; it’s a bit hard for me to tell right now where the line truly is in what we can really take credit for achieving through loving means.

But now in facing the idea of giving up my entitlement for everyday things to be easy and to revolve around what works for me, I often get really angry. “I shouldn’t have to change this! F*** anyone who tells me I should be happy to use a bucket for human waste, suggests I should learn to fix a car myself or thinks it’s reasonable to ask me to go through a summer over 100 F with no air conditioning! People should understand my plight! Woe is me! They should make it easier for me! WHY DOESN’T ANYONE LOVE ME IN THIS SITUATION?” I am literally like a spoiled 3-year old having a tantrum.

I also thought I was sick of America, particularly with the political drama of recent years. But if I’m honest, facing the idea that I will have to give up the demand for these everyday addictions in order to grow in love feels like a breakup. America feels like a person to me sometimes now, one I’ve been in a relationship with for 31 years and who I thought was really quite awesome. I thought we were close, I thought we were doing great things together in the world, I thought it was love and we’d reached the epitome of an awesome relationship that surely anyone would aspire to if their eyes and brain worked properly. And then someone comes along and tells me this relationship is actually a toxic one, and that we are destroying ourselves and others in the way we are living together.

It feels like a loss to consider giving these addictions up, like something precious, that I love, and that is vital for my happiness is being taken away from me. And I’m angry about it. I feel like I’m being jilted and love is being withdrawn (what I consider love to be). I know it may sound silly, but it’s how the idea makes me feel. I am told that when we give up addictions or come down from superiority, it can feel like a loss, even though God’s Truth is that we are not in actuality losing anything at all. I am told that in the end, giving up addictions always results in more happiness, and that retaining them creates more pain. God’s Perspective on these things, it seems, is extremely different from mine.

Sometimes I wonder, what if a lot of my pain is actually because of these issues? Maybe I have always felt lonely and isolated in part because I was taught addictions and worldviews that set me up for certain disconnection from my brothers and sisters in the world, and therefore, also from God. Maybe there is actually deep pain in feeling and acting entitled and there is suffering for me at the core of getting what I want, when I want it, how I want it.

I haven’t been to many places that aren’t first-world countries, but when I’ve seen photos or videos of those far less privileged than myself in the world, through my injured perspective I have wondered how in the world they could possibly be happy. I’ve seen photos of children with splitting shoes in front of shanty houses with a bigger grin on their faces than I have likely ever genuinely reflected in my life, or women cooking on dirt floors with their single pot and they seem more at peace than I’ve felt. I’ve thought, how could they be happy without all the comforts and things that I have? What are they excited about? It has utterly perplexed me; they have almost seemed like extraterrestrials to me. And yet, it makes me wonder how the soul actually works, and under what conditions feelings of joy, connection, and love are possible.

kea-mowat-699381-unsplash

Though I’d heard Jesus discuss country-based attitudes and the emotions of those first-world countries, it never felt to me like whatever American attitudes I might have absorbed would hold nearly as much importance, or personal pain, as say, feelings I have as a result of having been hit by my dad in my childhood. And yet the more I ponder it, the more the former seems as potentially pain-inducing and soul-damaging as the latter. After all, how can we minimize the effects of parents brainwashing their children in a way that disconnect their hearts and souls from the Soul and Love of God and of other people in favor of addictions masquerading as love?

Jesus said to me recently that every person in the USA will have to go through the process of challenging the facade of niceness, but Jesus has yet to meet anyone from the USA who is sincerely going through the process of coming face-to-face with their facade and how it affects their lives, others and themselves.

I haven’t yet decided to be one of the Americans to start doing this. Right now I pretty much just want the addictions despite the cost to myself and others, and I am very angry. But it’s something I’m thinking about personally and these are issues that hundreds of millions of people in the USA have, and which I’ve gotten some very interesting truth about from Jesus and Mary, and so I thought I’d share some of the truths I’ve been gifted with you. If we can shift as Americans, maybe we can cease being the chief destroyer of the world and the people in it as we are now, and our change in attitude, behavior and our repentance could be beneficial for the world instead.

Here are some Divine Truth videos I recommend to look at these issues. I will come back and add to this list over time as I find snippets mentioning issues in America or first-world countries generally.

20120218 General Discussion – Blocks To Spiritual Progression In The USA

20161108-1350 Governance Principles: In this video the question is asked, “If Governance Principles ensure restriction of those in lower development, why do evil people seem to be in power on Earth?” and a discussion relevant to America ensues. I have embedded the link directly to this question.

20161122-1510 Responsibility Principles: In this video I ask Jesus, “Why do humans often give societal power and authority to people who are not self responsible or developed in love?” and a discussion relevant to America ensues. I have embedded the link directly to this question.

20150930-1400 Judgement Towards Others (Selina Mytting): This video contains relevant reflections for many in first-world countries.

All Forgiveness & Repentance videos, which highlight how not forgiving and repenting personally contributes to country-based, societal and global pain.

Till next time,

Courtney

nasa-43563-unsplash

photo & gif credit to unsplash.com, pixabay.com & giphy.com

Another Youtube Channel: Veganism, Juicing & Food Addiction

Hello Everyone,

As I’ve mentioned before, my current main work is as a nutritionist. It’s been a long time coming, but I’ve finally created a youtube channel for my work as well, and I thought I’d mention it here in case anyone would like to subscribe to keep up with the videos I’ll post there as well. On this other channel, eventually you’ll find videos pertaining to health, juice cleansing, vegan nutrition and healing food addiction, and I’ll talk about God’s Truth on those matters and in the context of Divine Truth.

Thanks to Jesus and Mary for gifting me such awesome feedback regarding the way I’ve been doing my work, and their encouragement in my being more of myself and sharing more of what I really love within my current work. It’s an ongoing process for me to work through my fears about sharing who I really am and what I’m really passionate about, but I feel optimistic about it. And thank you always to them for discovering and sharing God’s Truth about these subjects, and well, pretty much everything!

I think it’s likely that as my passions develop, someday these two channels will merge into one as my long-term goal is just to help share God’s Truth with the world as the only thing I do, but for now, anything related to health, veganism, and food addiction, as well as topics like the soul and emotions and God related to those topics will be posted on my work channel. And other topics, such as sexuality, soulmates, spirits and things that aren’t along the lines of health, food and overeating etc., I’ll post on my God, Love, and Truth channel. So both will talk about DT and God, just with a bit of a theme on each.

Below is the welcome video for my work channel.

Also, there’s not really a need to announce it, but as long as we’re here, I also made a welcome video for my God, Love, and Truth channel:

Love,

Courtney

Veganism, Ethics, and Love

“Few of us are aware that the act of eating can be a powerful statement of commitment to our own well-being, and at the same time the creation of a healthier habitat. Your health, happiness, and the future of life on earth are rarely so much in your own hands as when you sit down to eat.”  

-John Robbins

About 11 years ago, I decided to go vegan. Going vegan has been one of the best things I’ve done in my life and I’m really grateful that I came across truth about it at such a young age, and I’m so passionate about how it can impact the world in such a massive and positive way.

I’ve written lots about veganism on my other blog associated with my work as a vegan nutritionist, including a post last year for my 10-year “veganniversary” last year, which you can read here. So, I was thinking to myself, Well, how would I want to write about being vegan here on my Divine Truth blog? My work blog is primarily about vegan nutrition advice, juicing and recipes, so I thought it would be really great to talk in this post more about being vegan from the emotional, moral and ethical perspectives.

I’ve decided not to make this blog a list of facts and truths about animal agriculture, because there are so many fantastic resources already out there on that. I’ll mention some of my favorite books and other resources throughout the blog, and also a list at the end so you have plenty of options for looking into the details.

How I Went Vegan

Growing up, I was nowhere near vegan. As a competitive swimmer and water polo player throughout school, I ate lots of meat, eggs, dairy, and sea creatures, just as my teammates did and my family did. I had never considered any kind of deviation from eating lots of animal products, nor was I one of those people who “never really ate much growing up anyway.”

When I learned the truth about animal agriculture, through a book I read when I was 18 called The Food Revolution by John Robbins, my heart broke open. To this day I think it’s one of the best books on veganism out there. Mr. Robbins writes this book in a compassionate tone, meanwhile citing incredible amounts of studies and well-researched facts. He never downplays or shies away from the truth about animal agriculture, but he also is warm and understanding with the (likely not vegan yet) reader. His book is full of inspiring invitations to see moving into veganism as a part of personal growth, being loving to animals, loving to oneself, loving to the environment, and loving to other humans in the world, and indeed, even a potentially spiritual choice.

This book found me at a time when I felt like my life had no meaning at all, and I had no ability to do any good in the world. The truths cracked through my numbness, and deep amounts of sorrow–that I had never known all this and hadn’t known the damage these things caused in the world–surged through me. For the first time in my life, I connected with grief about the state of the world and the colossal amount of pain and destruction in it. At the same time, I felt more optimistic than I had in many, many years. Realizing the impact I personally could have on the world through just this one area was probably the first time since being a young child that I felt much inspiration about anything.

Photo on 8-25-16 at 10.42 AM #3

I realized self-love would dictate I be vegan for the health of my body. If that wasn’t enough, then I learned about what happens to animals in the animal agriculture industry and how awfully they are abused and tortured, and indeed, how no matter how they are treated, exploiting them and/or killing them is wrong. And if that wasn’t enough, then I learned that the single most environmentally destructive thing on our planet is the production of meat, dairy, eggs, seafood, leather, etc.  They contribute to climate change, deforestation, water monopolization and contamination, and ocean destruction more any other factor. The consumerism of animal agriculture is absolutely annihilating our planet.

And if that wasn’t enough, I learned that my not being vegan directly affected the quality of life and dictated the very life or death of other people in the world–Oh. My. Goodness. I was blown away. No other industry, no other cause, has a bigger impact on malnutrition on this planet. No other factor contributes to deaths from malnutrition more than our choices to eat dairy, eggs, meat, etc. Animal agriculture robs thirsty populations of clean water, robs them of good land that could be used for crops to feed humans, destroys topsoil that’s essential for growing plants of any kind. It is an established fact, by the U.N. and other top organizations, that if the entire world were vegan, there could be no malnutrition nor deaths from malnutrition anywhere in the world. If we were all vegan, we could feed the world several times over. Think about that! People suffer and die because we don’t want to be vegan. They may be able to live if we make the choice to be vegan. It’s incredible to me.

“There is a great loneliness of spirit today. We’re trying to live, we’re trying to cope in the face of what seems to be overwhelming evidence that who we are doesn’t matter, that there is no real hope for enough change, that the environment and human experience is deteriorating so rapidly and increasingly and massively. This is the context, psychically and spiritually, in which we are working today. This is how our lives are reflected to us. Meanwhile, we’re yearning for connection with each other, with ourselves, with the powers of nature, the possibilities of being alive.

When that tension arises, we feel pain, we feel anguish at the very root of ourselves, and then we cover that over, that grief, that horror, with all kinds of distraction – with consumerism, with addictions, with anything that we can use to disconnect and to go away.

We’ve been opening ourselves to the grief, to the knowing of what’s taking place, the loss of species, the destruction of the natural world, the unimaginable levels of social injustice and economic injustice that deprive so many human beings of basic opportunities.

And as we open to the pain of that, there’s a possibility of embracing that pain and that grief in a way that it becomes a strength, a power to respond. There is the possibility that the energy that has been bound in the repression of it can now flow through us and energize us, make us clearer, more alive, more passionate, committed, courageous, determined people.”

― John Robbins

Needless to say, I cried all the way through this book, and felt like I’d taken the pill in The Matrix. It felt surreal, and like I’d been taught so wrongly all my life without having known it, by my parents, by the media, by the entire world. How did nobody know the truth? How can it be that nearly everyone on the planet believes in such huge lies? Why are we not aware of how much good we can do in this area?

It took me a month or so to give up all meat and fish, and then about another year to get to a place where I wasn’t willing to eat anything with even a small amount of dairy or eggs. At the same time as I gave up meat, I had stopped buying things with dairy or eggs, and was eating vegan the vast majority of the time, but I made compromises here and there for pre-made stuff that might have contained some, such as a non-vegan cookie.

I’m tempted to make this blog a big list of facts about animal agriculture and how powerful being vegan can be for world change because I find it so inspiring, but I’ll leave that for other books and documentaries. Now, I’d like to bring the discussion to the day-to-day in an individual’s life and heart, and about the biggest blocks I’ve seen over the years in people going vegan staying vegan.

breakfast-1575063_1280

Getting Adequate Nutrition As a Vegan

As I mentioned before, I won’t make this a nutritional blog, though I have lots of that info over on my other site. What I wanted to say here is that it is certainly possible to be a junk-food vegan these days, but it is important to be a healthy vegan. While I still have the draw to a vegan muffin or slice of pizza here and there myself, to be a healthy vegan you do need to have a varied, unprocessed, whole foods diet that is primarily raw food.

Additionally, Jesus has said that if a person has deficiencies or other issues going vegan, it is always due to emotions they haven’t released. This is discussed in more detail in this awesome email response from Jesus that has been published. The link to the entire response is below as well as an excerpt from his letter:

Jesus Answers Questions About A Vegan Diet

“Most people eat a heavy meat and carbohydrate based diet in order to suppress their emotions relating to how they feel about themselves.

When a person becomes a vegetarian, and then a vegan, this addiction to suppress these emotions is not met as easily through food. Since the addiction’s cause has not been addressed (which are the deeply held emotions of a lack of self-worth, and related similar feelings), the body begins to reject the food (because the emotions are demanding another food be consumed that will assist in the suppression of the terrible feeling of low self-worth).

The body is demanding what the emotion demands, and that is food that will assist in the suppression of the painful emotions of self worth, rather than feeling those emotions.”

-Jesus

If you find you have issues digesting a mostly-raw vegan diet, or any other issues, including deficiencies or not feeling good, it’s good to look at what emotions may be causing the body’s reactions to eating in a more loving way.

Family and Societal Judgments

I always tell people that I feel that going vegan and staying vegan is like taking an academic course in the subject of Not People-Pleasing. I see so many people willing to compromise their ethics in their eating or other consumer choices because of what other people think. And I don’t mean to make out that I’m very good at the not people-pleasing thing overall, because veganism is probably the only area that I’ve got that down and in other areas I have major problems with compromising for what others might think.

But back to veganism: There will probably always be some people who judge you for it. Granted, when you’ve worked through your own emotional holes that cause others to sense there is a chance for them to sway you, judgment happens significantly less. But the judgements don’t necessarily stop completely.

When I first went vegan, none of my family accepted it. One of my brothers said it was just a crazy, unhealthy diet I was going on that was no different than having an eating disorder. Some of my family were less judgmental but worried I wouldn’t be healthy if I was vegan. To this day, my dad thinks I’m only vegan because “food normal people eat isn’t good enough for me”and intentionally tries to make sure there is no vegan food available whenever I visit him (which I don’t anymore, for numerous other reasons than that). But positive things can happen too: my mom was one of the people worried about whether veganism was healthy at the beginning, but has gone vegetarian in the last couple years herself and aspires to be vegan.

Even though it hurt to see how unsupportive my family was at the beginning, I had already had such a huge emotional shift about the truth that veganism was the loving way to go and how much sin there was in eating and using animal products, that none of their projections swayed me into eating animal products. It really is true that when you’ve had a shift in your heart and soul about something, nothing will sway you and nothing will cause you to compromise. I think to be successfully vegan long-term, that is where you have to get to: you simply have to not care what people think about it.

To get there, that can be a very emotional process, and it requires us feeling the fear of and the pain about the projections that we receive from other people about going vegan. How does it feel when someone thinks you’re crazy? When they tell you you’re going to hurt yourself and create health problems for yourself? When you’ve lost their approval? When they’re condescending and critical? When they’re angry or even rageful? When they reject you from events or dinners now that you are?

“Vegan living, like love, is not about getting something for myself; it’s about giving: giving mercy and kindness to others who are vulnerable in our hands. Going vegan to get health is like getting married to get wealth: it’s typically not a lasting motivation and corrodes the integrity of our commitment.

If we don’t deepen our motivation beyond personal health, it’s easy to fall prey to the “cravings” fro an adverse affair of some kind – the bacon smells so enticing, the neighbor is so attractive. Motivation is at the heart of both love and veganism, as well as of our spiritual evolution.”

-Dr. Will Tuttle

calf-790263_1280

Taking Personal Responsibility

While people-pleasing is one of the biggest blocks to being vegan, on the other hand, I feel there are a lot of lessons of self-responsibility we have to learn in going vegan.

When I went vegan, I realized just how easy things had been before to get food–in every scenario. I could go into any restaurant and order anything I liked, stop at any gas station on a road trip and find something quick and convenient to eat. When I went to visit family, food was often made for me and I could take my pick of many options. After going vegan, I quickly realized that things were not going to be that easy anymore.

I find that a great deal of demands, expectations, and lack of personal responsibility are revealed in a person when they try going vegan. People often get angry about the lack of availability of vegan options in restaurants where they live or mope about not being able to eat their aunt’s pudding at Christmas. They complain about not having the time or knowledge to make vegan food at home. It’s always worth getting back to what the emotional factors in childhood may have created this anger or demand or lack of responsibility as there are always reasons we have them–but we do need to resolve them.

Being vegan requires a great deal of self-responsibility. We have to learn how to prepare tasty vegan food, and that takes an investment of time and effort. And I have compassion for how much of a learning curve that can be: it can practically be like re-learning how to cook and re-learning how to eat. But it can also be a fun learning curve! The key though, is you have to take responsibility for your own meals and food. For some people, this means having come from a life of quick and convenient food options to now having to be a person who spends a fair amount of time in the kitchen. But in my opinion, spending time in the kitchen making yourself good food is a part of self-love and self-responsibility.

When it comes to friends and family: we cannot expect that others now adapt to our new vegan diet. People don’t have to make anything for us–even our parents. They don’t have to have groceries ready for us when we stay for an extended time. If they do, that’s a gift, but no one has to conform to how we are now eating. This was a big shift for me also. Before being vegan, when I visited family, I didn’t do much of my own grocery shopping or preparing my meals. When I was invited to a dinner party, I didn’t think twice about what food might be there for me to have. But after going vegan, I did a lot of my own grocery shopping and pretty much all my own meal preparation when I visited family. Now my mom and my other brother have learned a couple great vegan dishes and have gifted me with some of them, but that wasn’t the case for the first 9 or 10 years of my being vegan.

If you are invited to a dinner party, don’t expect the host to make food specially for you. While vegan inclusions are awesome, no one has to do it for us. When I’m invited to an event involving food, I always let the hosts know ahead of time I’m vegan and let them know I’ll take care of my own food and bring it along–even if it’s not a potluck. Many times, the host has offered to adapt something to being vegan for me, but it’s not an expectation I have of them and I consider it a cool surprise and a gift anytime a person makes or adapts anything vegan for me.

Vegetarianism and Every-Circumstance Veganism

I say this with the deepest understanding of how challenging it can be for some to go fully vegan: vegetarianism is not enough. While meat has a slightly larger impact on the environment and natural resources and on other humans, dairy and eggs and seafood etc. are not far behind meat in their impact on the environment, animals and populations of people in the world. Dairy, eggs, and seafood are massively destructive in their own right, and actually, the commercial industries of both dairy and eggs directly feed the meat industry. Most commercial egg and dairy farms are responsible for killing as many animals as meat operations are, so to many well-researched vegans, it feels no different morally and ethically to eat something with milk in it than to eat meat.

When we haven’t had a soul-based shift yet, we will try to do the bare minimum when it comes to the ethics about our diet and animal agriculture. Many people would like to go vegetarian and not any further, wanting to tell themselves meat is significantly worse than dairy and eggs and that being vegetarian is almost the same as being vegan, even though this is not true. There are also many who are staying in the mostly-vegan phase (just as I also went through), where they make exceptions for the occasional item that has dairy or eggs, and this will also stop when we’ve had a true emotional shift. We make exceptions for animal products–even small amounts–when we still have addictions to them, as well as other emotions driving us to not want to make the full shift into a loving way of eating and living. When there is a soul-based shift, there won’t be a desire to stay in the dark about any aspect of animal agriculture, and no matter how inconvenient it makes life to learn the truth, we’ll still want the truth.

“Until we are willing and able to make the connections between what we are eating and what was required to get it on our plate, and how it affects us to buy, serve, and eat it, we will be unable to make the connections that will allow us to live wisely and harmoniously on this earth. When we cannot make connections, we cannot understand, and we are less free, less intelligent, less loving, and less happy.”

― Will Tuttle, Ph.D.

Additionally, the traditional definition of veganism has never been only about diet. While diet is the daily and largest component in our participation and support of animal agriculture, there are numerous other areas of ethics to look at. We have to shift as many parts of our lifestyle and consumerism away from animal agriculture as we can. This means not buying new leather, suede or wool in our clothing, shoes, car seats, furniture, and household products. We have to read supplement and food labels to make sure they don’t have gelatin and whey and casein. We’ll check hair and body products for whether they are tested on lab animals, not buy hair brushes and artist’s painting brushes that require killing animals for their hair. Our awareness about it will extend to everything. And while there is simply no way at this point to live on earth and have zero negative impact on animals, the environment, and other people, we simply have to do our best. We have to choose the loving choice in every scenario that we have the opportunity to.

earth-1607281_1280

The Emotions of Lack and Deprivation

Many feel their life will be much more limited and that they’ll feel deprived if they go fully vegan in both their diets and in their other consumer choices. But I feel this goes back to the same principles Jesus teaches us about everything: that in the end, living in harmony with love always brings more freedom and joy, not restriction. That choosing the loving option will always be expansive for the soul. I feel that if we can identify the emotions that cause us to fear that living vegan will be limiting for us and work through those feelings, we’ll find being completely vegan to give more meaning to our lives and connect us to more love and joy. The soul-based knowledge of the positive and loving impact on the world that we’re now having will feel really good. To know we’re no longer contributing to destruction, death and no longer sinning in this particular way is an awesome thing.

“I do feel that spiritual progress does demand at some stage that we should cease to kill our fellow creatures for the satisfaction of our bodily wants.”

-Mahatma Gandhi

Addictions and Soul Change

For us to feel, in our soul, a passionate desire to go vegan and a steadfast commitment to stay vegan in every circumstance, a big emotional shift has to take place. There has to be a major inner revolution, where you feel in your soul that going completely vegan is the moral, ethical, and loving thing to do–indeed, that it is the only option. In people who have had this shift, there is a feeling from them that no matter how hard it might be, they can’t not do it.

When the awakening to the truth about veganism happens in our soul, it feels like no matter the consequences, there is no other way forward. It becomes a shift we want to make, we are eager to make, and the desire for it outweighs the challenges that might come with doing it. We are willing to stay completely vegan in every circumstance without compromising for anything or anyone. And when we’re there, it will never once feel restrictive or difficult. It will feel like freedom, it will feel effortless and it will feel enjoyable.

“Your life does matter. It always matters whether you reach out in friendship or lash out in anger. It always matters whether you live with compassion and awareness or whether you succumb to distractions and trivia. It always matters how you treat other people, how you treat animals, and how you treat yourself. It always matters what you do. It always matters what you say. And it always matters what you eat.”

-John Robbins

piglet-1332259_1280

Resources

Now I’d love to give you some resources for learning more about all this. I’m so passionate about how everyone going vegan would transform the world in so many ways!

Divine Truth videos on veganism:

Eating Meat and Being Vegan

Making Loving Food Choices

Justifying Our Unloving Actions Towards Animals

Why Animals Eat Other Animals

Soul Damage of Eating Meat

Foods and Drinks That Prevent Spiritual Growth

Soul Causes of Physical Illness

Books on the ethics/scientific facts/emotions about veganism:511Q3hWQmoL

Books on vegan nutrition (the physical side):

Documentaries:

Raw Vegan & Vegan Recipe Books/Blogs:

Happy vegan-ing!

Courtney