Please enjoy the following excerpt form my Best-selling book, The Translucent Revolution, New World Library, 2005.

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Joe Kresse, with the Foundation for Global Community, is another translucent activist who perceives business as a ripe arena for transformation. He reports that translucent values emerge in businesses when they are willing togreen_shoots question the traditional idea of the bottom line. The more Iago-driven an organization, the more profit determines every decision. “True enough,” says Kresse. “Business does have to make a profit, but more and more businesses are developing multiple bottom lines. In many cases these are People, Environment, and Shareholders.” He observes that all are served best when prioritized in that order. (more…)

2892058635_da341cba5fYou may have noticed, we’ve been sending out news to our lists more frequently over the last weeks.  “What’s got into you Arjuna? You used to be such a quiet, retiring kind of fellow. Suddenly you’re sending out email, like popcorn.”  When you send out more frequently to a list, it is inevitable that some people will unsubscribe.  You can do so today through the ‘manage your subscription’ link at the bottom of any e mail we send you.  I hope you don’t, but it’s always there if you want it.
I got one particularly energetic unsubscribe request recently from a young man in Germany.  Rather than using the link, he decided to send me a personal message.  And here it is:
“Bullshit!! All your ‘doing’ is just making the “I” stronger.  I think you’re just trying to build your business and make money.”
I really appreciated the passion with which my young German friend expressed himself, and I got to thinking about it afterwards.  He had some important things to share.  The first was that the activity we were creating was re-enforcing the “I”.  And in a way, he’s got a point.  Many of us have created a schism between the vast empty space of awakening and the realm in which there’s a ‘you’ and ‘me’, and activity happening.
The interesting thing for many of us these days is not so much to disappear completely and rest in a void space, but how can this dance of ‘I’ and ‘you’ and ‘we’ and ‘they’ continue in a context of wakefulness? The trick of living an awakened life is not so much to make the sense of an “I” go away, but to see its illusory nature and let the dance of life continue anyway.
His second point was even more interesting: he was accusing me of just being interested in building a business and making money.  There’s truth in what he says there too. For thousands of years we have believed that there is an inevitable schism between awakening consciousness and worldly and material success.  Jesus set a whole process in motion when he let that comment slip about the rich man and the camel in the eye of a needle.  I’m sure if he’d anticipated how many people would be living in unnecessary hardship as a result, he might have thought twice about that statement.  (more…)

Please enjoy the following except from an interview I did with Jennifer Hough of Soul Talk radio last week:

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Arjuna: This is an amazing time to be alive. It is really so important to be in these conversations, because the whole game is changing very, very fast. Up until just quite recently, there has been great emphasis on personal empowerment: manifesting, using intention, the law of attraction; that was the name of the game. It was like a playground, playing with the possibilities of personal empowerment. Now the game is changing very fast, very, very fast.

You can see it in our role models, it’s very interesting. Just a few years ago the role model for the collective were people with the most money and power: a movie star or a banker. Somebody who’d made a lot of money, driving a great car, was seen to be the role model for what is possible. An interesting thing happened. Last week the G-20 Summit was held in London.Bankers working in the city of London were going to work in rough jeans and old t-shirts and riding the tube instead of their BMWs, because they were afraid of getting lynched: it’s become so uncool now to be playing the financial system and milking money out of the system.   There was the huge outcry with the  AIG bonuses. The whole collective is changing, our values are shifting very, very rapidly. What was really cool a few years ago is no longer cool today. And of course Barack Obama is an icon of our changing values.

What you contribute is becoming more important than what you take. So what you give back, the value you create, which is all to do with awakening, the value you create is more significant than the reward that you reap for it. And I’ve seen lately so many CEOs are proudly announcing that they’re not taking a salary. I’ve seen this multiple times lately, that CEOs are taking a dollar a year to lead a company.

Jennifer: Yeah, it’s all over the news right now.

Arjuna: It’s all over the news, because you see we’re replacing acquisition consciousness with contribution consciousness and contribution consciousness is all about awakening. The pivotal essential point for acquisition consciousness is manifesting. If your life is about acquisition, you want to learn how to manifest and attract as much as possible, attract more to me. So that’s why the law of attraction became the great secret of an acquisition based mentality. When we shift to contribution based living, then the key becomes not the law of attraction but “who am I?” Who am I really? What is my deepest value? Not what am I trying to attract, but what have I already got? What is the wealth that’s already in my pocket before I try and manifest more?

Jennifer: And what can I possibly contribute to the world?

Arjuna: Yes, and then, you see, that’s what translucence is all about, is contribution, and the way to contribute is to awaken to who you are, to awaken to that which is giving the gift.

Jennifer: Beautiful.

Arjuna: Very exciting times. Things are changing so quickly. The whole game is changing.

park-placeMany years ago, when my children were still quite young, we got a visit for the weekend from my friend Peter Russell. You may know him from his book, “The Global Brain,” and more recently, “From Science to God.” He came to visit us for the weekend to get a break from his busy teaching and writing schedule. He wanted some time off. So that Saturday afternoon he organized a grand Monopoly tournament with my two sons, who were around six and nine at the time.

As the game wore on, someone had built up hotels on Park Avenue, and someone else had bought all the utility companies; you know how Monopoly goes. I was glad to get a break from looking after the kids, so I wandered in and out from time to time to see how they were getting on.

What I learned that afternoon has stayed with me ever since.

My youngest son, Shuba, who was only six at the time, got very caught up in the game, as kids often do. So at one point, when he landed on Pete’s two hotels on Park Avenue and had to pay thousands of dollars in rent, he lost it. He ran to his room crying, saying he hated all of us. It took us 15 minutes to coax him out. When the game went better for him, on the other hand, he was overjoyed, ecstatic, and wanted to play forever. Pete, on the other hand, seemed to be enjoying himself no matter what. He rolled his dice, and if his fortunes were good he laughed. He rolled the dice again, and if his fortunes were bad…he still laughed. (more…)

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With record prices at the pumps, both Freddy and Fannie looking really quite punch drunk, much of California covered in smoke, and an economic forecast gloomier by the day, many people today find that their response to our world has gradually shifted from patient optimism to concern to, well, freakin’ out.

As a writer, public speaker and “awakening coach,” I travel a great deal throughout the US, working with all kinds of people, from CEOs to hairdressers, and from mystics to merchants. When things get this uncertain, we discover that there is not nearly as much difference between us all as we might have imagined. In our ambitions, our dogmas and our prejudices we find a splintered world, when our status quo is threatened we find our common humanity. During the second world war in London, people discovered the same thing. Families who had not talked to each other for decades, because of some half remembered feud, became friends again while taking refuge in the London underground from the German bombing. The external threat provoked a sobering up from small preoccupations.

I have worked with tens of thousands of people over the last decades, both individually and in groups, facilitating a simple shift in consciousness, which we can call “awakening.” Generally our attention and energy is wrapped up in trying to improve our situation: make more money, find the perfect relationship, get the right raise. Perhaps we get a little more savvy, and shift that attention from the external to our internal state: we work on ourselves to become more loving, more positive or even more “spiritual.” Awakening is in a whole different ball park. Awakening happens when you run out of options, when, at least to some degree, you surrender the struggle. Then all the effort that was wrapped up in trying to make things better is freed up, and we relax simply back into ourselves, into a peace and presence that was overlooked in our obsessive activity. And millions of people are discovering, and least in snapshots, that everything goes better as a result. (more…)

Presence in treesI met David in Brighton last November, he attended a weekend seminar I was teaching there. The South of England in November is always a rather depressing experience: I think it rained every single day of my six-day visit. People look down at the ground, hurrying on their way to the closest warm refuge. But David’s story was a particularly sad one.

At the beginning of the seminar I asked everyone to grab a partner and to tell their partner why they were there for the weekend: to set intentions. When they were all done I asked a few people to take the microphone and to share what they discovered with the rest of the room. Dave was one of those who volunteered.

“I’m new to all this,” he said, “Never been to no seminar in me life,” he went on in his London accent. His strong shoulders, simple innocent manner and rough hands told us that he was a working man.

“I came ‘ere coz me mate said it might ‘elp. I work in building, see, wiv’ concrete. Jus finishin’ a job right now on the new electric company plant, and then I ‘aint got no more work. Building work’s almost at a standstill in England… I dunno what to do,” Dave’s chin began to tremble with emotion. “Got me a fine wife at home. Luv ‘er her to bits, I do, and three great kids. But work’s been slow for several months now, and I’m desperate. Don’t even see ‘ow I can get me kids Christmas presents this year.” Now Dave was not just feeling emotional, he was actually crying. Somebody nearby passed him a tissue. He was clearly extremely embarrassed to have broken down in front of a group of strangers. (more…)