Metaphysics Course

This blog has essays from the Metaphysics Courses offered through the Universal Life Church. We have a variety of courses that are available in the area of metaphysics.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Spiritual Awareness

The Insight Into Awareness course is based on the ten insights presented in the Celestine Prophecy. It is a wonderful course that can be easily applied to provide intense spiritual growth. I loved this course!

The First Insight is the awakening. It talks about an awakening that is currently occurring on the planet. There is a critical mass of people who are experiencing their lives as a spiritual unfolding through meaningful and mysterious coincidences. As we begin to pay attention to the coincidences, we notice more of them. This is the realization that the divine is leading us in a particular direction to fulfill our mission. Many times we do not recognize the “blessing in disguise” until later. An example in my life was when I decided to take a class in herbal medicine. I loved it and thought it was fun, so I became involved in an herbal apprenticeship class for 7 months. I still wanted to know more after that 7 month class, so I decided to look for a degree program and found one that fit my needs (and budget). Five years later, I have a doctorate in natural health and will open a business in a few years when the finances allow for it. This will help me fulfill my mission of helping others with their health and stress.

The Second Insight is called the “longer now”. People are becoming more aware of the purpose of our lives on this planet and the real nature of the universe. We are spiritual beings with a spiritual nature. This new focus replaces the preoccupation with technology and the gaining of material comforts. In the past, I was always focused on my career, being promoted and being a super-achiever. At a point in time (when my Dad passed away), I became much more focused on spirituality. My focus increased considerably when my mother passed away a couple of years later.

The Third Insight is about energy and the fact that our universe is composed of dynamic energy, not matter as we had previously thought. This energy is sacred and through projections, people can focus this energy and increase the number and pace of the coincidences. Wherever we focus our energy, is where the energy flows. I became aware of this truth with my Reiki training and am now a Reiki master. With the constant use of Reiki, my understanding of this truth expands.

The Fourth Insight makes us aware that we are in a struggle for power. Too often we cut ourselves off from the source of energy. We tend to compete for other people’s energy by wanting attention. This competition for scarce human energy is what causes conflict. This insight explains why there is conflict within families—especially between parents and children.

The Fifth Insight teaches us that when we tap the source of divine energy within us, all of the conflict and violence ceases. This is the message of the mystics. Once we make this connection, we feel light and a constant sensation of love. I have found one way of making this connection is through meditation and Reiki.

The Sixth Insight show us when we tend to lose connection… usually when we are under stress. We become aware of when we manipulate other people’s energy and steal it. The more we become aware of when we are connected and when we lose connection, the more connected we will stay.

We also must recognize what our parents gave us, how we are using it and then clear the past so we can eliminate our control dramas. This opens us up to aligning with our spiritual path more clearly. I find I lose connection when under stress. I am trying to become more aware of every situation in which I do this.

The Seventh Insight is about engaging the flow of energy once we become aware of our personal mission. Once we are in the flow of energy, the coincidences increase, we daydream and have meaningful dreams to find answers to our questions. At some point there will be synchronicities that when we have a question, it will be answered intuitively by another person. This has occurred for me on several occasions. Usually, the answer comes from my husband a day or so before I ask the question!

The Eight Insight teaches us the interpersonal ethic and how to conduct our relationships. We need to uplift everyone that comes into our lives and be careful not to lose our inner connection with our romantic relationships. It is easy to become co-dependent on another’s energy. It teaches how to project energy to others and handle family situations. This is one insight that I will use from now on.

The Ninth Insight is about our evolution to spiritual beings through synchronistic growth and attainment of higher energy states. We will eventually end the cycle of birth and death and will unite the afterlife dimension with the physical dimension of earth. I work with Reiki to continually attain higher energy states.

The Tenth Insight is about fulfilling our birth vision in remembering how to live this spirituality on earth. This spirituality is what all humans have strived to accomplish. Once we remember that we are here on assignment, we will pull a fuller vision of what we wanted to accomplish while on earth and be able to live it. I have the vision of what I wanted to accomplish and that is helping others through counseling. Living it on a daily basis is a challenge.

As I have a strong interest in the Celestine Vision, I went a little further and found that there is now an Eleventh Insight that talks about extending prayer fields. Every religion and sacred writing refers to the power of prayer, positive thinking, etc. Using a prayer form of holding a vision of intention for a spiritual world, we are helping to transform the world into spiritual form. I have been participating in a global prayer forum where many people hold a positive vision for the world together.

There is a Twelfth Insight under development. Stay tuned!


The Universal Life Church is a comprehensive online seminary where we have various classes in Christianity, one on Wicca, along with several Pagan courses, more than a few courses about Metaphysics with more being added regularly.

Ordination with the Universal Life Church, is free, legal and lasts for life, so please take advantage of our Free Online Ordination.

The  ULC, run by Rev. Long, has created a chaplaincy program to help train our ministers. We also have a huge catalog of minister supplies.  I've been ordained with the Universal Life Church for many years and am proud to have started the Seminary.

Try our new free toolbar at: ULC Toolbar

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Spirit Quest

When I first started taking this course I had been estranged from my then 19 year old daughter. I was at a crossroads in my life and was feeling as if I was spinning out of control. Now, approximately 7 months later I find that my life has almost complete balance. My now 20 year old daughter has reconciled with our family and my husband and I are both anxiously awaiting the birth of our first grandchild. 

While the reconciliation is ‘icing on the cake’, my entire world feels as if someone turned on a light in the dark room in which I was living. Last June when I decided to become an ordained minister and attend seminary I was seeking answers to questions that perplexed me. I have always had a close relationship with God, but I couldn’t hear or feel him anymore. Because I know that he didn’t change or go anywhere, I knew that I needed to look within myself to reconnect to Him. I believed that a course title “Spirit Quest” was just the vehicle that I needed. Using the various tools provided me in this course, I was able to literally relight the candle and see not only myself but the world more clearly.

Right out of the box (my email in box), the first lesson reminded me that I needed to take charge of my life instead of letting it take charge of me. Although I had always believed in goal setting, like many other aspects of my life, I had gotten out of the habit. I immediately sat down and wrote out what I really wanted. Although I did not necessarily meet every goal (like losing weight), I find that the more substantial goals (like forgiving others and myself) have been attained. One of the biggest gifts that I have received from this course is forgiveness. During week 1 I wrote that one of my goals was to “let go and let God.” Basically I needed to forgive certain people in my life who had harmed me and allow God to hand out their punishment. Shockingly, when I opened week 2 the word FORGIVENESS jumped out at me. I knew right then that I was in for a life changing experience. From that moment on I would anxiously wait for Tuesday when I would receive the next lesson.

I did have a difficult time with Meditation. I never “saw” anything other then darkness. At first I was stressed over this and decided that I either needed to have a lot of work done on me or I was doing something wrong. I eventually emailed Amy and she graciously told me that I was not the only person who never “saw” anything. I eventually learned to use meditation as a means to listen. Darkness became my friend as it shut down all other senses and allowed me to hear and feel. Because I never “saw” anything I was not able to create an image of a rose in my minds eye. However, I lit floral incense or candles and opened up my sense of smell. To clear my mind I would stare at flower (not necessarily a rose) and focus on each of its parts. It was very difficult at first for me to “sit still” long enough and I felt it was a silly exercise. However, over time the clearing of my mind happened quicker and easier. Now, when I see or smell a flower I almost immediately get a sense of calm. I feel centered and rejuvenated.

Another lesson that I felt was life changing was discourse #16, Speaking in the Positive. It was very difficult to change the way in which I communicated with those around me. I had to consciously remove negative words not only out of my vocabulary but my thoughts as well. Instead of focusing on the estrangement that we had with our daughter and the anger I had towards those that were responsible, I focused on the love I felt for her. It was very agonizing to do this, however with the other tools that were provided to me through this course I was able to push through the pain. Simplistically speaking, I tried to only think “happy, positive thoughts”. Those happy thoughts translated to positive words flowing out of my mouth. Lest one think that I have created a “Pollyanna” environment (although my husband has taken to calling me that), everyday I make a choice to be happy and productive. When I get angry or sad, I pull upon lessons learned these last 30 weeks to refocus my energy and remind myself that I am in charge of my life and therefore my emotions.

Rev. Michelle Fields


The Universal Life Church is a comprehensive online seminary where we have classes in Christianity, Wicca, Paganism, two courses in Metaphysics and much more.

Ordination with the Universal Life Church, is free,  and lasts for life, so use the Free Online Ordination, button.

The  ULC, run by Rev. Long, has created a chaplaincy program to help train our ministers. We also have a huge catalog of Universal Life Church materials.  I've been ordained with the Universal Life Church for many years and it's Seminary since the beginning and have loved watching the continual growth of the seminary.

Try our new free toolbar at: ULC Toolbar

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Spirituality Course

Defining Spiritualism is a very insightful course that gives a terrific overview of how various philosophies have influenced religion and how such extremes in thought developed. It is very helpful in understanding others and how to minister to them – especially those with a more scientific worldview.

The lesson on atheism was very interesting. I always wondered how people could hold this philosophy and where it came from. This philosophy is based on an extreme view of science, and assumes that nothing exists outside of our five senses. It does not recognize our spirit or unconscious mind. It is a very narrow view of the world.

Many of the world’s atrocities were justified by the concept of predestination. This was one aspect of Christianity that I always struggled with. I could never understand how Christians could kill others in the name of Christianity. It was interesting to learn that if someone was not “called” to Christianity then it was assumed that they were somehow “predestined” not to be saved.

In summary, I really enjoyed the course and would recommend it to others. I think it is very important to understand how various philosophies were created and how they have influenced the modern world. As ministers, we need these insights and understanding in order to be of most benefit to those we minister to.

Thank you for making this course available!

Rev. Patricia Buben


The Universal Life Church is a comprehensive online seminary where we have classes in Christianity, Wicca, Paganism, two courses in Metaphysics and much more. I have been a proud member of the ULC for many years and the Seminary since its inception.

The Universal Life Church offers handfasting ceremonies, funeral ceremonies and free minister training.

As a long time member of ULC, Rev. Long created the seminary site to help train our ministers. We also have a huge selection of Universal Life Church  minister supplies. Since being ordained with the Universal Life Church for so many years and it's Seminary since the beginning, I've watch the huge change and growth that has continued to happen.

Try our new free toolbar at: ULC Toolbar

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Metaphysical Healing

Topic: Anatomy and Physiology
We all have one of the greatest gifts our on human body, more advanced that any computer that has been made or will be made. Our Creator did a miracle job putting in place all the needed elements on our framework and inside on structure everything that can heal our self.
When we look at the different systems which makes our human body so remarkable to be a city worker all the time for the goodness of our health and well being is truly greatness.

As we gaze to the other-side or our outer-side where we find a part of our energy field and how our Aura Shield protects us from harmful contaminated elements that can harm us in different ways.
This why we need to understand how and why our human bodies work so to head off illness and disease from entering our bodies. By understanding the why certain systems work with our other systems not readily mentioned in the medical field can assist you in compassing how to control your health in a easy way.

As a healer it's very important to know what you feel, in working with clients, I inform them that I'm not a medical doctor and I do not give diagnose, but will give my opinion to what I feel after I scan the body and in doing so when I feel spots in the chakras area's and the appropriate organ or area most of the time I can tell and also assistance from my guides I give a pretty good opinion to what is troubling a client.
Everything that I learn about structure of humans, animals, elements,the world in general assist me in gives the client re-reassurance to their troubles and health problems.

We as healer remember we are not medical doctors, it's important not to confuse the clients with terminology that medical doctors use and for us to stick to the simple terminology that we are familiar with. As a healer is important to know the terms for our own self.

I did a unusual scan on a person, instead of laying down, I scanned standing up from head to base just to make sure I wasn't missing something. The client came in with swollen upper lip and in pain, A cyst had been growing for days and antibiotics were not helping;

I placed my hands near his upper right lip, an gave him some energy heat to promote the cyst to come to a head and release. I informed him that the pain may increase until it released. The next day he told me as I was treating him he felt a lot of heat inside his lip,after getting home still in pain, he placed a warm washcloth on the lip and it exploded and everything came out, he said it was a bloody mess, but soon after there was no pain and no swelling anymore. He said what every I did felt like heat pushing the cyst out of my lip, and he thanked me.But some of the of the help came from within his system doing their job that just needed a push in the right direction. This is my opinion our body works.

Would you send this message back to me because I'm unable to copy the whole text in my small box. Thank you, Rev. Joe


To ordain yourself with the Universal Life Church, for Free, for Life, right now, use the Free Online Ordination, button -- Click the link!

As a long time member of ULC, Rev. Long created the seminary site to help train our ministers. We also have a huge catalog of Universal Life Church materials.  As an ordained minister with the Universal Life Church for many years and it's Seminary since the beginning, I've enjoyed watching the continual growth of the seminary.

Try our new free toolbar at: ULC Toolbar

Monday, December 19, 2011

Spirituality Course

ULC Defining Spiritualism course

I felt the course was a very thought provoking and unique program. By looking into the history and development of western intellectual thought as is associated with the development of religion one can see how this evolution morphs according to what is most accepted at the time.

The tools in the form of information within this course will aid me in dialoging and ministering to skeptical individuals. There are those who rather ridicule people who believe in mysticism. These are individuals that too are looking for meaning in life and when seeking our council we can approach carefully with the knowledge necessary to deal with those driven by the mind.

Placing complete faith in the powers of logic and reason is a method that is inherently flawed. What was determined as logical and reasonable most often changes with time with other discoveries and insights which make original thought void or at least altered to adjust.

By better understanding that mysticism can be considered the truth of all things but that that truth can be understood in different ways through various spiritual paths. I realize I must learn as much as I can about other religions as possible and I see how it can be closely compared to a more mind centered scientific outlook so I can help others on their own journey more effectively.

With this understanding I conclude that essentially religion and “scientific outlook” are alike in their core beliefs. The following was helpful:
Magic……………………..Scientific Process
Faith……………………..Objective Reality

The truth we speak is exactly the same though the terminology is different. The universe is an interaction of the mind and energy therefore is always changing. No one can KNOW anything absolutely. God transcends limitations such as weight, size, and mass. These are illusions. Suffering is the condition by which joy is possible. Suffering drives us to greatness. Is this illusion’s purpose a growth process?

What is predictable according to Newton has inherent uncertainty according to Heisenberg. One can propose this question to the scientifically minded. How much of what science had proven to be true one hundred years ago is still believed to be true today? About 90% is now proven false. What of today’s proofs will be considered false in the future?

We must remember we are forever learning. We are forever changing.

I realize my purpose is to be one of a guide not the expert who knows the truth. I can give guidance through non-threatening questions. I will plant the seed and perhaps see it germinate but perhaps not. I must be patient to let others blossom according to their understanding on their own journey.

Every ministry is an opportunity to learn.

If we believe our reality is a creation of a collective manifestation of imagination we can realize our expansion continues in search of more perfect conditions existing somewhere else that we cannot currently see.

Physics unite the two predominant views regarding the physical world versus the psychic world. This ultimate philosophy would unite the truth in these two philosophies, as there is truth to both. We limit ourselves with words and need to focus on intuition.

As ULC ministers we accept a more open interpretation of God and God’s Love. We look forward to a day when we realize the oneness of all, to our service to man, not to be envied as a chosen group.

“I am the chosen favorite” is arrogance of Christianity that runs rampant throughout the fundamentalist movement. This attitude is reflected in other fundamentalist groups as well. We are all children of God and we all find our way on our own unique path. Pagan, Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, or other. We as ministers must never think our faith is the one true path.

We need to reach out to those in need. The more we give the happier we are. The less we think in terms of what others are doing for us the more we think of what we can do for others the more at peace we are. To love is better than to be loved and through loving we can feel love. To give is better than to receive and through giving, we do receive.

When we fight or struggle against these teaching, diverge from this thought, we ourselves suffer. We need to focus on the positives and on beauty so this is what we see.

We are all God and as such we are all a part of this self-awareness process. Our contribution is our own introspection as we work to honestly come to know the nature of our own souls, so too does God come to know the nature of his/hers. If you want to do God’s work, look honestly into yourself and know that by doing so you are doing the greatest of his work.

When ministering to another use their language such as spirit and soul, physical, psyche, demons, multiple personality disorder, etc. It does not matter which name is attached if the person is deeply touched.

By taking this course I have been given an overview of the influences philosophy has on even those who know nothing about philosophy. This is the way of society in that everything influences everything else.

This realization that I know nothing keeps me humble and ready to listen fully to the person I minister to. I need to put myself aside and always question my motives and be aware of when my ego tries to creep in.

These are only highlighted points of which I found useful and I continue to reread the info to gain deeper perspective of the content.

Rev. Denise


The Universal Life Church is a comprehensive online seminary where we have classes in Christianity, Wicca, Paganism, two courses in Metaphysics and much more.

Ordination with the Universal Life Church, is free,  and lasts for life, so use the Free Online Ordination, button.

The  ULC, run by Rev. Long, has created a chaplaincy program to help train our ministers. We also have a huge catalog of Universal Life Church materials.  I've been ordained with the Universal Life Church for many years and it's Seminary since the beginning and have loved watching the continual growth of the seminary.

Try our new free toolbar at: ULC Toolbar

Monday, December 12, 2011

Spiritual Awareness

Essay on Spiritual Awareness Course
As I began taking this course, I was not prepared for the insights that would be given to me in
my personal spiritual journey. One of the topics that really helped me on my sacred path is the section regarding the Eighth insight. I discovered through this topic in the course an issue that I struggle with and a need to overcome it in order to help other congregants in my capacity as a spiritual counselor. Through this experience, I was led to begin a step study for co-dependents. Twelve women have joined me on this venture, congregants within my immediate ministerial capacity. We are working through the twelve steps created by the founders of Alcoholics Anonymous however; we are using the materials created by John Baker’s A Purpose Driven Ministry Resource Guide, a recovery program based on eight principles from the Beatitudes. At this stage, we have worked through the first participant’s guide, which includes the first three steps and I, and these benevolent women have discovered many important spiritual truths in our personal struggles with co-dependency. As a group, we have grown closer to one another and closer to Spirit because of taking this leap forward in our personal growth.

I realized through this part of the course that I was struggling with an addiction to people. This carries into every area of my life and as a minister an area that I must deal with in order to be of greatest service to my fellows. It is another step towards spiritual freedom and liberation for me. As I know the importance of engaging in my own evolution, but have a tendency to put that to the side to help others, which is a selfless quality, a merit in one respect, but one that needs to be in balance and harmony with my spiritual ascension and evolution. 

I further realized that I was having issues in my romantic life because of this problem, issues in my marriage, that I certainly contributed to as a result of being completely addicted to my spouse who struggles with various forms of addiction, though is in recovery. It led me to look into myself and to find answers to the questions of why the bliss of our initial love relationship had turned into turmoil, chaos and conflict and what my part of the conflicts were and most importantly what Spirit could reveal to me in this regard and how I could seek to recover from these patterns. I realized that I dependently so relied upon the energy of my spouse. When he stopped sending that energy in the initial full force that began our love relationship I began to seek to control him and in effect repelled his energy, forced it away and we each somewhat pulled apart from one another thus the oneness we initially shared was crushed.

Thus, resulting in power struggles, and conflicts, many issues, and distance, withdrawal, retreating, arguing, disharmony, among many other forms of overwhelm, stress and burden. He turned to addictive traits and solutions that offered initial promise from his pain but began to quit working and I continued to try to control, manipulate, lecture, teach, and thus creating more distance, withdrawing and pulling back of energy and attention. 

I discovered many truths about addictions from this course. I grew up in an alcoholic family, as my father was a practicing alcoholic in the formative years of my life. When I turned sixteen, he got sober through the assistance of a treatment facility, counseling, alcoholics anonymous and spiritual beliefs and practices. I knew about chemically addictive personalities and traits, and problems. I knew how these affected family members through my association with twelve step programs over the years. What I had not considered was the greater range of addictive issues and so this course lead me to seeking what might be affecting my husband, what issues were causing his addictive and compulsive tendencies and I began to pray about the issues that Spirit revealed to me through my search for higher truth and solutions. 

As I uncovered the truths through the guidance of Spirit, I tried discussing them with my spouse but he was not ready to deal with these issues and was very much in denial. I knew that I could not make him see the Light in the circumstance. However, I also knew as a Minister of Light that I could pray for him regarding these issues. I could ask others to pray for him. Therefore, I did pray that Spirit would reveal these truths to him in such a way that he could no longer be blinded to the truth, in such a way that the revelations would come through Spirit and not me. I prayed that the chains would be broken, the karmic ties, bonds would be severed and cut and in such a way that he was revealed to himself and others, thereby being accountable not to just me, but to others, and to Spirit. This miracle happened, and the way it happened was not by coincidence or happenstance, but was indeed the divine intervention that I prayed for and that others prayed for on our behalf. His behaviors were revealed in such a way, that I could not have created it or thought it up, or plotted, controlled, in anyway, as the Divine has a perfect plan for us all, if we can just be patient and wait on the Divine to act on our behalf. 

I have begun to give him the freedom to recover in his own way and pace, and to accept where he is and who he is in this moment and each moment. This has given me more time and freedom to focus my attention on my own actions, reactions, thoughts, feelings, and to be free from having to try to control things I cannot control anyway. I realized that my struggle for control really kept my spouse from getting the recovery he needed, because I was in Spirit’s way, as I was not allow the synchronicities of the Universe to come into play. 

Today I do not have to get my energy from my spouse, or any other person. I am not focused on the actions of others, I am less sensitive to what others say, and I am more open and receptive to allowing others to get close to me. I have addressed my issues of control and realized that I have control over nothing that another person does and my attempts to control were misguided, and ineffective, and harmful to others and me. My life is no longer on hold; rather I am progressing spiritually at an accelerated rate. I am no longer tired all the time or feeling lifeless and drained, I am full of life, aliveness and energy. I feel like enormous burdens have been lifted from my soul. Thank you so much for this awakening. I have given up my unrealistic expectations of others and myself and this is so freeing to be able to accept others not as I would have them, but the way they are and the beauty is I am able to see their divine perfection rather than character flaws and defects.

I realized my completeness, wholeness, comes from Spirit, not from others. My spouse and I are closer than we have ever been. We are praying together and choosing things that bring us closer and illuminating things that cause us to separate and pull away from one another. We are each developing a deeper sense of self, and of compassion and understanding for one another’s struggles and the pain, we have caused one another through our power struggles and conflicts, and destructive behaviors. We are no longer pulling one another away from our individual evolution but enhancing one another’s spiritual growth and this is a miraculous indescribably wonderful adventure. 

Rather than focusing on physical intimacy, we have begun to focus on inner intimacy, revealing ourselves totally and completely, and talking, sharing our wants, needs, desires and dreams. We understand one another on the inside, developing a deeper sense of one another’s well-being so that we can move upward, and onward forward on our sacred journey together. We are in counseling together working on having a deeper more intimate physical and romantic relationship doing healing work individually and together. He is participating and leading a men’s step study for men struggling with life issues and addictions of broad scales. Through these constructive actions, we are developing a strong spiritual connection, without power struggle, rather accord, having a close relationship, greater than what either of us thought was possible. 

I decided that can live with or without the marriage, but I wanted it, but free from having to fill myself with his energy, and I relinquished control over his actions to Spirit and to his accountability partners, trusting that Spirit will act on both of our behalf leading him and us to our highest, best good. I am choosing to stay centered in my own energy and life. I have had victory over my tendency to control, over my angry outbursts, and manipulation tactics for about three months. I do not have to create crisis, chaos or drama to get what I want, I simply share my feelings honestly and openly with respect and dignity. I am detached from his problems most of the time. 

Thank you so much for the insights and awareness of these issues through this course. It has helped me tremendously in my marriage and my relationships with others in my community, spiritual life. I no longer feel the burden of the problems of others, and am able to allow Spirit to guide my steps and trust that Spirit will help others with their problems as well. Blessings be upon you in the greatest measure.

Love and Light,

Rev. Tracy Loper


To ordain yourself with the Universal Life Church, for free, for life, right now, click on the Free Online Ordination link.

Rev. Long created the ULC seminary site to help ministers learn and grow their ministries. The Seminary offers a huge catalog of materials for ministers of the Universal Life Church

Tuesday, December 06, 2011



The Spirit-Quest course is just what I needed. From the very first lesson I studies, my life began to change for the better. From the first discourse, I realized that in order to reach my goals,  I first needed to make a list of spiritual goals.  My first was to lose weight and quit smoking in order to be healthier and to be in a better position to be able to respect my body, as well as my spirit. I do believe that my body is a temple that should be treated respectfully. With the lesson on forgiveness, I started the process of forgiving people, including myself. I had built up anger and resentments through my life which caused me to have a short temper and frequent outbursts.

After writing some letters to the people that I felt anger and resentful towards, a lot of that anger and resentful feelings just disappeared. Another lesson I gained a lot from was the lesson that dealt with competition, both physical and spiritual. I was an athlete from elementary school through my sophomore year in high school. I was always driven to win that game that we were playing. But I was always telling myself and other people how much better I was than them which are spiritual competition which isn’t good. I realize that now after taking this course that I am no better and no worse than anyone else that I know or will come to know. Because of this spiritual competition, I spent a lot of time being isolated and separated from people and God. I also learned to speak in the positive since that is what the universe hears. I am still working on improving my speaking in the positive since I have been speaking in the negative pretty much all my life. I liked the lesson on amusement. Since I work in a big grocery store, a lot of people come through so I sometimes try to amuse the customers as they check out. I am working on be more amusing and less sarcastic which at times is amusing when the time is right.

Another lesson that stuck out at me is the lesson on music. There are some songs that just vibrate with me just the right way. If I am having a bad day, music will be able to turn that around and I will finish that day out pretty happy since the music resonates with me real good. The lesson in asking the right questions was a great lesson for me. A lot of the times, I end up asking the question in a bad way and then I get a bad response to that question or don’t get the answer I was looking for.

Sometimes, not asking a question is considered an act of omission and also a case of not asking the right question. I also found some things interesting from the lesson about pain. The thing that I really liked about the pain lesson was the Emotional Cellular Release Therapy that was mentioned which described how emotions like anger and resentment are stored in our bodies in different places and if these emotions sit there long enough, they will create illness.

The money lesson was a very important lesson to me because I am one of those people who would never worry about money and I would go out and shop to buy things because that is how I valued money. But since reading this lesson, the way I have valued money is not the way I want to value it anymore. I did some meditating on this and decided to come up with a budget to live within and the budget includes pay off my credit card bill which has a sizable (at least to me) balance on it. I am viewing money as a safety net for the future, my retirement, and for unexpected emergencies. I think that money does symbolize power and status, at least here in the United States. I am not interested in money for the status of having it or the power that might come with it. I am just using it as a safety net so that I can lead a decent life so I can help others in their lives too.

I found this course very worthy while and will keep each lesson that was e-mailed to me so I can review them more times in the future. There are a lot of great things that I have learned from this course. I will keep incorporating things from Spirit-Quest into my life.

By Michael Barth

Ordination with the Universal Life Church, is free,  and lasts for life, so use the Free Online Ordination, button.

The  ULC, run by Rev. Long, has created a chaplaincy program to help train our ministers. We also have a huge catalog of Universal Life Church materials.  I've been ordained with the Universal Life Church for many years and it's Seminary since the beginning and have loved watching the continual growth of the seminary.


Doctor of Spirituality Mid-Term Essay
Rev. Michael Barth

This course on the miracle of prayer has totally changed my view on prayer. I had always thought that prayer was talking with God but never realized that prayer is also a way we show love to God and how God shows love to us. I did not realize that we have free will to listen to God, but at some point we will all listen to God. The revelation of love was something totally new to me. I thought that this section would explain what love is but could not explain the meaning of love and used the analogy of breathing as why love could not be loved. Learning that love is all-encompassing and that there is no opposite of love really shocked me since I think it terms of opposite like good/evil, wealthy/poor, etc. I learned that we cannot have any fear if we are to show true love. Any self-doubt and/or fear takes away from any true love we try to show.

The way that God is described is a new concept of God to me. I grew up in a non-denominational Christian family and had a pretty traditional of God. To me, God looked like us, was punishing, and to be feared. Like a lot of people, I also thought there was a heaven and hell. Heaven was where the good people went to be with God and the bad people would spend eternity in Hell. The concept of God being all love and all encompassing was a radically different way to look at God. I liked how the love of God is described as pure, perfect, abundant, changeless, limitless, indestructible, joy, and peace. Before taking this course, I never had considered myself a son of God, but now I do. Also, I never considered Gods purpose for me which is to extend love. I have always lived life the way I wanted to and if I didn't spread love, I didn't care. I didn't even care if I had spread hate or other ill-will with other people. Now I know that God's love is all-encompassing and that I need to spread it around this planet.

The blood sacrifices in Lesson 3 got me thinking quite a bit. How and why would God need blood sacrifices to atone for sins? This lesson answered these questions by telling me that blood sacrifice was a human invention. Before this lesson, I thought that God had already condemned this world for all its transgressions that have occurred and God would punish us all. I had never considered the fact that God has already forgiven us. The fact that this course has altered my thinking about is great because now I think that God is a loving and merciful God. I liked how Jesus was used in the course on how perfect innocence cannot be destroyed because perfect innocence is indestructible which gave Jesus the power to overcome death. I liked how Jesus is described as a son of God, like us, and not part of God, unlike some Christian sects who say Jesus is part of the Trinity. Just the fact that Jesus is our brother and will help people bridge the gap between themselves and God is reassuring to me. I too, have prayed in Jesus name and have not understood why we always said "In Jesus name we pray. Amen." Now I know that we are calling on the power of God and remembering and calling on Jesus' promises to us.

In Lesson 4, I learned that I was one of the many people who was using forgiveness to destroy. I would forgive people for harming me because I felt that they were below or inferior to me. Also, I would forgive people if they did something in return such as I will forgive you if you stop stealing from me or give back what you have stolen from me. I have also forgiven people because I felt that they were just like me or were very similar to me and what I had done to others. I also had used the third type of forgiveness described in this lesson as the martyr. I would suffer in silence at the hands of other people and then have people look at what I have to go through. I realize that these types of forgiveness are not true forgiveness because I will be expecting something in return for my forgiveness, will be letting myself still feel guilty about forgiveness, will be self condemning myself, or will be trying to destroy another person. I never knew that true forgiveness involved mercy from God or help from God. Also, I never considered that true forgiveness changes us and not the other person with whom we are forgiving. I also had a real problem with forgiving people who had committed really bad acts or bad behavior. I remember growing up and being in 6th grade when a school shooting took place at an elementary school in our school district in Winnetka, IL. 

After the shooting happened, the person that had been killed was a person that I had met the night before at a baseball game because his older brother was on my team. I was unable to forgive the person who did the shooting because of all the harm that it caused the people involved and the community. The family of the young boy that had been killed was very distraught and was in shambles. This shooting scared me and robbed me of my peace but have learned in this lesson that I need God to help me forgive myself and the shooter. Also, I let this shooter rob me of my peace of mind at the time too. I liked how this lesson teaches how there is no sin and that we have to look through Christ's vision instead and respond with love. I loved the 3 steps of forgiveness in this lesson too which I am working on incorporating into my life right now

The Holy Spirit is a concept that I have always had a problem getting. I have always been trying to figure out what the Holy Spirit really means to me. This course has helped a lot because it gives some symbolism of what the Holy Spirit is, such as fire being purification and wind being inspiration. I realize now that the Holy Spirit can be represented by different symbols. I liked the section on how the Holy Spirit functions. I never knew that the Holy Spirit functions as a completion of the redemption of mankind or for healing our mistaken perception. I learned also that the Holy Spirit is a mediator between our illusions and the truth and also helps us with our separation with God. I know that there are a lot of illusions that I see and need help seeing God's truth in what is happening. Also, I know that for myself, I need the Holy Spirit to help me bridge the separation between God and myself since I definitely am not living the Godliest life possible. I know that the Holy Spirit is teaching me more about love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, honesty, and much more since I am allowing the Holy Spirit to work within me. As a kid, I was really impatient, angry, hateful, and would flat out lie to people. As I have gotten older and since taking this course, the Holy Spirit has been teaching me patience, peacefulness, love, and honesty. I still have a long ways to go and still have a lot of teaching from the Holy Spirit, but I am making good progress. I definitely need the Holy Spirit in prayer to bridge the separation between myself and God and also for taking up my false thoughts that I have. During prayer now, I try to be one with God instead of telling God how things need to be done and when to be done.

In this course, I have also learned what true prayer is. I grew up thinking that prayer was when I asked something from God and always thought that prayer began with me. Growing up, I would ask God for many things just like asking Santa Claus to bring me many gifts for Christmas. I never thought that prayer began with God and is a way of communicating with God and being in communion with God. Also, I thought that my prayers were often not answered or heard by God because I never received what I had prayed for. Now I know that prayer is to fix me and my issues and will be done in God's time. Also, my prayers are heard by God and are also answered by God in his way and most likely the answer isn't what I wanted like a fancy car showing up in my driveway or a lot of money appearing in my bank account. Substitution is something I also learned too. I thought that having money or material things would bring me happiness and would often pray for money and material things but realize that I am just substituting things here for real happiness which already exists within me.

I also learned a lot about the different levels of prayers that we use. I never had thought about the different types of prayers as being higher or lower than another type of prayer. I am used to using the prayer of need followed by the prayer of freedom. I cannot recall using prayer of joining or prayers of humility when communicating with God. With the prayer of need, I am usually asking God for help with something like helping me deal with my depression or helping someone I know that is dealing with serious illness. I also was given a thought provoking statement about prayers for our enemies. I never thought before that considering someone as an enemy was also reinforcing my own guilt and rejecting God since I would be rejecting one of God's children. Prayer of freedom is a type of prayer that I have used to help me release guilt that I have over something or to release myself from a self-imposed imprisonment of some kind. I think I might have used some prayer of joining but not in a positive way. I have always prayed for God to do this or that to someone who has harmed me in some way. I now realize that this isn't something that God is going to do to one of his children. I don't think I have used the prayer of humility because of the fear of letting things go. For some reason, I have also felt a need to control things or a certain amount of things in my life but I know now that I have to let go and let God do his work with me so I can go do things that will be in love.

The lesson on the power of prayer was very interesting to me. I have read in the newspaper and have watched the news where scientific studies have shown to heal people and also increase the life expectancy of people who had strong faith and prayer. This lesson explained to me why these studies have shown these results. I had never considered before that each thought that I have produces a chemical reaction in the brain and that the brain does not determine between good and bad thoughts in which to produce these chemical reactions. I also never thought about taking responsibility for my thoughts and try to change the way I think. The sections on unanswered prayers struck home with me since I often believed that my prayers were going unanswered but now realize that my prayers are answered but not the way I wanted them to be answered. I realize that I just maybe afraid to see God's answer or just not be accepting of God's answer that he has provided to me.

I liked the section on magic versus miracles since it explained the difference. I did not realize that magic is an attempt where a person or thing would apparently use super natural powers that were exempted or overruled the laws of the universe whereas miracles appeared within the laws of the universe and are thought to be of divine origin. I never thought that miracles were all the same. I thought that one miracle would be greater than another but the lesson taught me the one miracle is no more difficult or harder than another miracle. I also like how miracles can shift perception. I could use a shift in perception from my ego's thinking to the Holy Spirits thinking. This lesson also pointed out the miracles point out the truth and that no illusion can threaten the truth. This lesson also pointed out that I need to be more miracle ready than I am presently ready for. Unfortunately, I am still thinking a lot from my ego and would not recognize a miracle right now if one were to happen.

This course so far has really jolted the way I have thought about prayer and miracles. I have been inspired by this course to actually start reading the book A Course in Miracles. So far, I have found this course and the book to be of great help to me and I have found it fascinating on how the book came to be. This course is a lot easier for me to understand than the book is due to the way it is written. I have gone to the A Course in Miracles website and now get the newsletter from the Foundation of Inner Peace. This course has really got me thinking on how I think and pray and have located a study group that deals with A Course in Miracles. This course is teaching me a lot and I am glad that I am taking it currently and have been incorporating things in the course into my everyday life which has been very helpful with dealing with issues such as depression, relationships, and guilt that I have. I definitely think this course is well worth the time and effort.


Ordination with the Universal Life Church, is free,  and lasts for life, so use the Free Online Ordination, button.

As a long time member of ULC, Rev. Long created the seminary site to help train our ministers. We also have a huge catalog of Universal Life Church  materials.  I've been ordained with the Universal Life Church for many years and it's since the beginning and have loved watching the continual growth of the seminary.

Try our new free toolbar at: ULC Toolbar

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Rev. Vicki A Bennett D.D.

As a Buddhist, I am awed when I read the Pali Canon and the knowledge and wisdom of the Buddha's teachings. He was fully awakened and in receipt of all the intrinsic intelligence of the Universe. I aspire to becoming an awakened being that I may bring all whom I come into contact with the same awakening.

I have been on a solidly spiritual path for over 24 years now, but that was not always the case. I am a 59 year old woman who struggled through the lessons of this lifetime for 35 years before I began to see just who and what I really am.

I have tried to instill the knowledge of my journey in my daughter and now my granddaughter. I find that we are so frail until we take the journey within and discover the truth of our existence.

As a student of Buddhism, I have trained myself to be the objective observer so that I may not judge others, but see the lessons that they struggle with and be compassionate. This also allows me to be compassionate with myself and that is the greatest gift of all.

You were so open and honest in your final lesson to us; I will try and be the same. Like you, I did not have a wonderful mother. She was distant and silent, and I struggled to make her love me. I was and still am an artist and she felt that I was a failure even though I graduated from college and went to grad school, taught college and am a success as an artist. This was not good enough for her.

My father abandoned her when I was born, and so to her I was, “just like my father and so she never attached herself to me as I would, like my father, leave her. She remarried when I was 4 and he died of a heart attack when I was 7. I saw the whole thing, he was sitting in front of me, but she never explained anything to me, didn't take me to the funeral, just abandoned me even more completely.

I was constantly seeking affection, someone to pay attention to my emotional needs and unfortunately I was a beautiful young girl and this got me molested by a 25 yr old neighbor when I was 13. I was severely traumatized but again she ignored me. Her solution was to have our family physician prescribe mild tranquilizers for me and force me to live on them for 3 years.

My pattern became to seek out men who were emotionally distant, who would abuse and ignore me and then abandon me. After a second divorce at 33, I was a brilliant artist who suffered from chronic migraines, hated men and had managed to give myself uterine cancer.

After my hysterectomy, I gained weight for the first time in my life. I was 35 and no longer a perfect size 8. Since I had based my entire life on how I looked and how many men I could attract, I was devastated. I actually would cross the street if I saw a good looking man sitting out on his porch for fear that he might cringe if he had to look at me. (And I had only gained 25 lbs.)

Loosing my perfect figure was the perfect catalyst for me to begin my spiritual journey, the why me? became, who am I and why am I here? And this led to a number of synchronicities that became the path that I followed. As I opened myself to a higher consciousness, I was pulled through one door after another and allowed to explore the rooms within myself.

I learned to be completely quiet within, and then to journey out of body, to meditate for hours on end and to see the magic of the universe unfold before my eyes. I flew in my lucid dreams, brought back the wisdom of the clear light beings that woke me and took me on expeditions into the universal consciousness and beyond.

I have been given a gift that is beyond riches. I have come to a place where I am approaching clarity. I am grateful for that gift everyday, thankful that I found this church of open-minded beings that I can commune with over the internet. Happy that people like you have chosen to dedicate themselves to the greater good and hopeful that you will achieve clarity also.

In your final essay to us you wrote:

I have decided that any philosophy written by a philosopher who has never been married (and who if married has not made it through at least ten or more years of marriage) is a philosophy that is less than worthless. Marriage teaches us about ourselves like nothing else. When we live with someone, that someone will eventually learn who we really are, not who we want the world to think we are. This forces us to look at ourselves. This is so traumatic that divorce, as difficult as divorce can be, is often easier than honest introspection. Without this part of life, any philosophy is left wanting because the philosopher has never had to face himself in so honest a way as marriage requires.

This caused me to stop and take pause. I can see the truth in your words and yet I know that this was not true for me. I could not see myself or the person that I would become while I was in an abusive relationship. I kept asking, What is wrong with me? and, How can I make him love me? These were the very same questions that I asked my mother.

When I realized that I could not be whole while I was trying to get someone to love me, I left my husband whom I loved with all my heart and soul. I left him so that I could love me, so that I could discover the woman that I have now become. And now when I perform weddings, I am filled with joy for the couples that I am marrying, I don't feel the sadness of loss, the why am I alone?

I am full, whole and complete. And this was only possible by giving up the need to have someone love me physically and emotionally. Balance is best kept by finding your ground and staying in the moment.

At this moment, I am reading Quantum and the Lotus it is a dialogue between a Buddhist monk (Matthieu Ricard) and a physicist and professor of astronomy (Trinh Xuan). It is the meeting of two minds discussing the reality of reality

The Heart Sutra is the mainstay of Buddhist thought, form is emptiness, emptiness is form meaning that nothing in and of itself arises independently and so everything is devoid of intrinsic being. We are just collections of atoms (energy) each creating our own universe with that energy and colliding with each other so that our realities overlap and evolve. Thank you for sharing your energy.

We are all one.

Rev. Vicki A Bennett D.D.


The Universal Life Church is a comprehensive online seminary where we have classes in Christianity, Wicca, Paganism, two courses in Metaphysics and much more. I have been a proud member of the ULC for many years and the Seminary since its inception.

The Universal Life Church offers handfasting ceremonies, funeral ceremonies and free minister training.

As a long time member of ULC, Rev. Long created the seminary site to help train our ministers. We also have a huge selection of Universal Life Church  minister supplies. Since being ordained with the Universal Life Church for so many years and it's Seminary since the beginning, I've watch the huge change and growth that has continued to happen.

Try our new free toolbar at: ULC Toolbar

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Defining Spirituality Essay
Rev. Francis J Douse, ULC Seminary


This is my essay for the Defining Spirituality course with the ULC Seminary.  A matter of confusion on my part had occurred, which is not a good start on any course of study.  I was thinking the course dealt with actually defining what spirituality is, which would have been a monumental task in itself effort to devise let alone study.  Instead, I soon discovered it was quite different to my expectations and truthfully some prejudices on my part and yet it has proven enjoyable, informative and complemented studies and thoughts I've followed during my life.

The course itself explored the basis of current Western thought and how it has developed over the centuries, this was presented in the context of ministering to scientific and/or rationalist minded people.

Manifest Matter and Mysticism at the Heart of All Things

Something I felt was implied if not asserted was that matter can be manifest or at least manipulated by will. But this is not expanded upon, or at least not to the point where a minister is attempting to breach the gap between themselves and someone who is scientifically minded, can discuss the matter in a meaningful way.  The hardened rationalist will be looking directly for logical evidence during such a discussion and I did not feel that 'rational' examples were given. I would have liked to have seen this explored in more depth. The course writer states that science proves mysticism to be at the heart of all things and whereas I can agree, again, I cannot see how a rationalist will accept that statement without irrefutable evidence. I've encountered some concepts posited to support this, firstly Shrodinger's cat - a quantum mechanics thought experiment. A cat (or other living organism) is placed in a sealed box with a poison. According to the Copenhagen Interpretation, the cat is both alive and dead until the box is opened, the act of observing the end result determines the outcome. Another is a phenomenon known as wave-particle duality, for example photons behave like a wave or a particle depending on how they are being observed. Whereas these seem almost mystical and would indicate that the mind does affect matter, the reality may be more complex. For example, with the cat experiment the Copenhagen Interpretation is just that - an interpretation and there are and probably will be more now and in the future.

The Classics, The Cave and Religious Philosophy

I've always believed that a classical foundation is a good starting point for education and for understanding our roots in western culture. I enjoyed the material presented especially the cave allegory by Plato. It was similar to an example given to me when studying quantum theory at university. In this example, imagine a sheet of paper which represents a 2 dimensional world in which 2D stick people live. They can only perceive the X and Y axes, there is no Z axis for them - it is beyond their perception. Now imagine I take pencil (which can also be a Platonic perfect form) and pierce the paper on which they live, I pass the pencil through along it's length and remove it on the other side. What would the folk in 2D world see? A 3D pencil? No. They see a dot form where the pencil pierces, the dot grows into a circle, the circle persists for a time and vanishes. The idea that a 3 dimensional object had passed through their world would be ludicrous to them! It underlines the limits of our own perceptions and knowledge.

Although we are concentrating on western philosophy, no man is an island.  There is a massive jump from the Greek philosophers to the Renaissance thinkers, I believe an acknowledgment must be given to Islamic scholars who gathered and built upon Greek knowledge and it's re-introduction to the west.  Also Constantinople should be given a nod, as the capital Eastern Roman Empire it persisted another 1,000 years after the collapse of the west, and traded heavily with the Islamic world especially in regard to the ancient texts. Such knowledge was highly prized and the Byzantine book markets still survive to this day. After it's fall in 1453, the great Byzantine thinkers came westwards bringing the knowledge with them. Similar events occurred in Spain too. I admit I am over-simplifying a complex issue but none the less, a paragraph about where the knowledge was and how it was used when Europe languished in the so-called Dark Ages would have been useful.

One thing I am not too clear on. Renaissance thinkers worked (generally) within the rules of the Church (and failure to do so would be at their peril) and many have been men of great faith, yet rationalists build on that foundation to assert their own cold God-less world views.  I'm not sure how they reconcile or reconciled that. How many of these more recent philosophers will still stand the test of time in another 1,500 years or more?  I would be surprised if the likes of Plato and Aristotle aren't still read. Will Nietzche's syphilitic nihilism still hold any real value? How much philosophy is useful and how much is just plain old over-thinking?  These are issues I have been motivated by the course to question and to continue seeking meaningful answers to.

Atheism - A Clear and Present Danger

Atheism is a subject that was explored.  There are those who use the foundation of other philosophers and thinkers (many of whom had faith) and a conceited reliance on logic, reason and science to support their atheism. Just as I cannot prove the existence of the Divine using science, they cannot disprove it. I assert that atheism is simply a belief and not a 'non-belief' as some would say. It is a system of belief like any other, and a narrow myopic one at that.  For the atheist, life essentially has no meaning, no purpose. We are born, we live, we die and that is it. Anything else is just wishful thinking and fantasy, a coping mechanism to deal with our own mortality, it is placed into the same category as Father Christmas and the tooth fairy.

I further assert that reason, rationalism and science cannot be used in any context of spirituality anymore than carpentry can help in mountaineering, they are separate fields of human endeavor. Also from all the experiences I have had with atheists - and I say this as a former atheist myself, that there are those who reject the Divine because they had a limited and naive view of it to begin with.  If one has been exposed to a literal view of God as a human dressed in white with a long gray beard sat on a throne behind pearly gates, then I could sympathize with their rejection, after all, such symbolism is a relic from Greco-Roman paganism.  To me, to rely on science to provide 'proof' that God does not exist is a lie and a conceit because science has no  bearing on faith whatsoever.

I believe that extremist secularism and atheism as espoused by Richard Dawkins represents a real danger in society, just as real as religious extremism. Here in the UK as more and more are brought up without any spiritual dimension whatsoever, society is in a real and demonstrable moral free-fall.  Nobody thinks twice now when an 11 year old boy fathers a child with a 15 year old girl!  Even here in York, I've witnessed with horror a medieval church being transformed into a hedonistic nightclub! The moral vacuum has lead to over-inflation of the ego, loss of self-respect and ultimately damage to the soul. It is a sorry state of affairs and very few seem to even care.

My own conclusions

As I said in the introduction, I had a little confusion about the course when I began but it has proven to be a most insightful and enjoyable course.  I believe that there is no conflict between science and spirituality as they are separate endeavors. Science deals with what can be observed and measured while God is beyond all things, ineffable and transcendent, as mankind learns more about it's place in the cosmos God will always be beyond touch. For me, He is beyond mathematics and reason, He has revealed Himself to me and thus in my mind I have all the evidence I need. 

Science is not a subject where one should place all of his or her stock, it;s a systematic way of objectively viewing what we perceive, it provides no meaning and no idea of what happens after death. Science has limits, we will never know what happened before the Big Bang, we don't even know how the universe will end, only that there is an almost biblical cosmic struggle between dark matter holding the universe together, while dark energy seeks to pull it apart. We think the universe is one of many and we know the universe is some 14 billion years old, we know many things and their mechanisms. We know the odds of producing a world full of complex creatures are against us, let alone the mass extinctions that life has fought through. The odds against us being here are literally astronomical and yet here we are.  Is it by an intelligent design or simply pot luck?  As stated in the discourses, we can only say we know nothing.

As sad as it is, there will be people we cannot minister to. I have encountered people who simply cannot believe in a concept of a soul and anything of a Divine nature. This is anathema to me, to reject one's own soul is like rejecting the mind and consciousness itself.  Approaching scientifically minded people is possible if they have a seed of spirituality within them, as ministers we can nurture that and allow it to grow to its full potential.


Ordination with the Universal Life Church, is free,  and lasts for life, so use the Free Online Ordination, button.

As a long time member of ULC, Rev. Long created the seminary site to help train our ministers. We also have a huge catalog of Universal Life Church  materials.  I've been ordained with the Universal Life Church for many years and it's since the beginning and have loved watching the continual growth of the seminary.

Try our new free toolbar at: ULC Toolbar