Your Unique Self: The Radical Path to Personal Enlightenment by Marc Gafni [Updated Oct 3, 2015]

Underlying the vision behind democracy is the recognition that every individual has dignity, adequacy and worth. This democratic understanding of the worth and standing of the individual lies at the core of what the West calls enlightenment. The Western idea of enlightenment, rooted in the great vision of the Biblical prophets, is generally understood to have entered mainstream consciousness through the political democratic movements of the mid 18th century. Western enlightenment is primarily concerned with the democratization of political power.

Classical enlightenment, sometimes called Eastern enlightenment because it was greatly emphasized in the East, is about the individual merging into the greater one. The appearance of separate self is an illusion, which must be overcome as the individual realizes that are really not separate at all but part of the one.The goal of Eastern enlightenment is moving beyond the grasping ego and desperately seeking separate self by attaining a state of consciousness in which the illusion of separateness was dissolved in the greater one. This path of classical enlightenment is seen as the path beyond suffering.

Unique Self enlightenment brings the Eastern and Western understandings about enlightenment together, into a higher Integral World Spirituality embrace.Unique Self enlightenment is based on your commitment to transcend separate self into the one, even as you realize that essence sees through your unique perspective.Unique Self opens the door to the potential democratization of enlightenment. To awaken to your Unique Self is to be lived as God, which, in truth, means to be lived as love.

Dr. Marc Gafni is a philosopher, public intellectual and wisdom teacher. He holds his doctorate in philosophy from Oxford University, rabbinic certification from the chief rabbinate in Israel, as well private rabbinic ordination. He is also ordained and holds a doctorate in religious science. He is the initiating thought leader, together with Ken Wilber, of World Spirituality based on integral principles, as well as the leading theorist and teacher of Unique Self Enlightenment. He is the director of Center for World Spirituality, whose leadership includes John Mackey, Mariana Caplan, Sally Kempton, Lori Galperin, Warren Farrell, Kathy Brownback, Victoria Myer, Liza Braude, Tom Goddard, Elizabeth Helen Bullock, Terry Nelson, Wyatt Woodsmall, Chahat Corten, and Mauk Pieper.

A rabbinic lineage holder in Bible, Talmud, and Kabbalah, Gafni self-describes as a “dual citizen” of both integral World Spirituality and classical Hebrew practice. He has also been called a master of the heart and a trail-blazing visionary in opening up new possibilities for love, eros and relationship. He is a guest editor of the Journal of Integral Theory and Practice on issues of integral spirituality, has been a faculty member of JFK University, and is the author of eight books including the national bestseller Soul Prints, and The Mystery of Love, an exploration of the relationship between the erotic and the sacred. His latest book, Your Unique Self: The Radical Path to Personal Enlightenment, was named #1 in Spirituality by USABookNews in 2012.

An iconoclastic artist and provocative visionary, Dr. Gafni has led spiritual movements and learning communities as well as created and hosted for several seasons a highly popular national Israeli television program on Israel’s leading network. The program focused on culture, meaning, and spirit.

He is the father of four children (the youngest being two years old), in committed relationship, and lives in Northern California.

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TEDxSinCity – Dr. Marc Gafni – Your Unique Self: The Future of Enlightenment

Marc Gafni is a cutting edge spiritual teacher, author, television personality, mediator, corporate consultant, iconoclast, and gentle provocateur.

He has written seven books, including the national bestseller Soul Prints, which won the prestigious NAPRA award for Best Spirituality Book of 2001, and was a main selection of the One Spirit Book Club and the Amazon.com Best Book in the Jewish Thought category in 2001. This book was also made into a National PBS special and an audio series by Sounds True recordings. Soul Prints is published by Simon & Schuster.

Marc Gafni’s second major English language book, also published by Simon & Schuster, was The Mystery of Love. It unpacks an esoteric Kabbalistic tradition about the profound relationship between the sexual, the erotic, and the sacred. The Mystery of Love was critically acclaimed and made into an audio series called The Erotic and the Holy, published by Sounds True.

Marc Gafni on Democratization of Enlightenment – Part 1 – Introducing the Evolutionary Mystic….

Part 1 of 11 teachings on the Democratization of Enlightenment by Center for World Spirituality’s Marc Gafni.

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Do we Create our own Future? ~ Leonard Jacobson

Question: Do we create our own future? There seem to be two opinions in the metaphysical world on this subject: The New Age thinkers say that whatever you want, you can make happen. You can create your own reality. Then there’s A Course In Miracles, of which I am a student, that says that the “script has already been written.” In other words, we pre-chose the events and circumstances of our life and therefore, we can’t make up a new script. What’s your opinion on this subject?

Leonard’s Answer:
Both the New age approach and the approach outlined in A Course in Miracles are true, but at different levels of consciousness.

Thoughts are creative, but for most people, thoughts and desires occur at an unconscious level. On the surface, you might want a new job or a partner to share your life with. You might pray for these things to appear in your life and yet they do not. This is because, at an unconscious level, you are harboring contradictory thoughts, beliefs and desires. For example, at an unconscious level, you might believe that you are not good enough or that you are unwanted or unloved. Or you might have decided that love hurts or that love leads to pain and separation and so you prefer to be alone. These things are in direct conflict with your conscious thoughts and desires and so life does not know how to respond to you. More than likely, your unconscious beliefs and desires will prevail.

Using the New Age approach, you bring these unconscious beliefs and desires into consciousness and replace them with positive beliefs. An example of New Age methodology is the use of affirmations and positive thinking. By being positive and very clear about what we want, it is created.

To some degree, this is true, but it is subject to a higher law, which flows from a higher level of consciousness. The law of Karma is involved here. Prior to our current incarnation, we existed at the level of soul, and one of our principal objectives in incarnating into this lifetime, is to heal and purify past Karma which is affecting the soul. We are here to learn our lessons about love, acceptance, power and compassion. We are here to awaken into love, truth and Oneness. We are here to deliver our own soul into the conscious experience of Immortality. And so, the script is written prior to our incarnating into physical form and it is intended to give us the highest impetus and opportunity to awaken and learn our lessons. The more open we are to learning our lessons, the less we have to experience pain and suffering.

This level of law, which is reflected in “A Course in Miracles” prevails over the New Age approach. In other words, it does not matter what you want. What will ultimately emerge in your life is whatever is for your highest good, and that is largely predetermined by the soul’s script and the law of Karma.

There is yet another level of consciousness, which prevails over the two previous levels. As we awaken into the highest and most exalted level of consciousness, the script and pre-determinism of “A Course in Miracles” is also transcended.

Everything that occurs in your life is a part of God’s plan to wake you up and bring you fully present. We are so fast asleep that sometimes God has to shake us up to wake us up. Whatever it takes! Once we are fully present, then basically, God wants us to have whatever we want, because then we are fully conscious and awakened Beings of Love. We know who we and we know Who, What and Where God is and we are awake in the truth of life.

We see that God has already created all that is, and we relax into the perfection of that. There is no need to create anything ourselves, At this level we begin to experience Heaven on Earth and our true and most perfect future unfolds through the doorway of the present moment. It is inevitable. This is a rare state of attainment at this stage of human evolution. But it is our ultimate destiny.



Leonard Jacobson
is a spiritual teacher, mystic and gifted healer, who is deeply committed to helping others break through to the joyous experience of living in the NOW. He has a remarkable ability to tune into each person’s needs and gently guide them into the present moment which leads to wholeness, integration and the awakened state of Being.

He has been running workshops and seminars for the past twenty-five years offering inspiration and guidance to those on the path of spiritual awakening and enlightenment. His teachings and his presence are a powerful reminder that the source of life and truth is within each one of us and is revealed through the present moment.

In 1981, he experienced the first of a series of spontaneous mystical awakenings that profoundly altered his perception of life, truth, and reality. Each of these enlightenment experiences revealed deeper and deeper levels of consciousness, filling his teachings and his writings with profound wisdom, clarity, love and compassion.

He lives in Santa Cruz, California and offers evening teaching sessions, weekend workshops, and longer residential retreats in the United States, Europe, and Australia.

He is the founder of The Conscious Living Foundation, a registered non-profit organization. In 2005, he was awarded the Peace Prize by Religious Science International, although he is not affiliated or associated with any religion or church. His teaching is both inclusive of and transcendent of all religions and spiritual traditions. It is for all those genuinely seeking to awaken, and for all those who do not yet realize that they are genuinely seeking to awaken.

He is the author of four books, Words from Silence, Embracing the Present, and Bridging Heaven & Earth and his latest book, Journey into Now.

In his books, tapes, seminars, and retreats, Leonard shares invaluable keys to enlightenment as well as effective ways to integrate higher consciousness into everyday living.

Quest for Awakening

The Enlightenment Teachings of Leonard Jacobson

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