“Inspiration flowing through us is a messenger from the realm of our nonphysical self, from where we were before we entered this visible world of form. We have the ability to return to that formlessness right now, in our body, without experiencing physical death. – From the book
Renowned lecturer and author Dr. Wayne Dyer has dedicated his newest book to in-Spirited living. Inspiration: Your Ultimate Calling contains methods for finding your way to an inspired life, absorbing the inspiration of others, becoming an inspiration, and transcending commonplace uninspiring energy.
According to Dyer, inspiration is the opposite of motivation. Motivation is “grabbing an idea and carrying it through to an acceptable conclusion”, but inspiration is the reverse—allowing ourselves to be moved by a Force greater than ourselves. While motivation pushes us towards goals, inspiration is a relaxed flow, enabling us to enjoy where we are on the way to where we’re going. By remembering our constant connection to Source energy, we tap into peace, ease, and abundance.
Inspiration: Your Ultimate Calling teaches some brilliant principles that I’ve discovered in my own life, and found to be a guiding source for inspiration and on-purpose living—such as the power of giving, gratitude, and following curiosity. Some of my favorite quotes from the book include:
“Remember: We’re already connected to everything that we think is missing from our life. Below and above the ranges that our eyes and ears perceive, the entire activity of creation remains invisible and inaccessible—but when we shift from sensory searching to trusting what we know, we discover the folly of chasing after anything in order to feel inspired.”
“…you’ll never find light by analyzing the darkness…”
“Having an interest in something is the clue to a thought that’s connected to our calling—that thought is a vibration of energy in this vast Universe.”
“Ego nags us to compete and insists that we’ve failed when others defeat us or have more than we do.”
“Lecturing or demanding others live peacefully is one of the least effective ways to inspire them; however, when we simply demonstrate that we’re living peacefully, we offer other people a large dose of inspiration by our mere presence.”
“…we must make a conscious choice to say no to anything that takes us away from an inspired life…We can start by turning down requests that involve actions that don’t correspond with our inner knowing about why we’re here”.
While Inspiration: Your Ultimate Calling is replete with sage, universal wisdom, some of Dyer’s recommendations are contradictory and counterproductive. Throughout the book, he asserts that we are not our body—that we are spirits having a human experience. When we forget this truth and associate with ego (“edging God out”), we aren’t living “in Spirit”. Then Dyer relates a story about Ram Dass, whom one day was pondering what it would be like to be old and infirm--mere seconds before his incapacitating stroke.
Dyer tries to connect metaphysical dots by saying that Dass attracted his stroke and illness based on what he was thinking at the time. Towards the end of the book, he says that if you’ve attained victim status, experienced natural devastation, sickness, etc. it’s “not your fault”. However, in the next breath—and echoed throughout the book—he stresses, “Since fear is a vibration, you were a vibrational match to whatever entered you life at the moment of its arrival”. In effect, he’s saying, “Yes, sickness and disease is actually your fault, because you were in fear and attracted it.” Earlier in the book, Dyer mentions that we’ve come from a great “wave” before incarnating as a “particle” and that we were an integral part of devising our soul’s curriculum on the Earth. If this is true, then Dass included his stroke into his “sacred contract” or life chart. Jesus was once asked by religious folks why a man was infirm (“Did he sin? Did his parents sin?”) and Jesus replied, “No one sinned—it was to declare the glory of God.”
What Dyer is forgetting (or doesn’t realize) is that if we’re not our body, then we sure as heck aren’t our thoughts! Yet, he advocates aggressively policing our thoughts, attempting to destroy the ego, and affirming health through negative affirmations. For example, in Chapter 13, he recommends that individuals should say provocative affirmations (his words) aloud, such as “I’ll never allow myself to feel old, feeble or frail” and “I refuse to allow Alzheimer’s, cancer, or any other infirmity in my life”. Any student of Hypnosis 101 knows that the brain doesn’t “hear” negatives. That is, what the brain will actually receive is “I allow Alzheimer’s, cancer…” etc. He sprinkles these kinds of negative affirmations throughout the book.
This focus on laboring to eradicate “negative” thoughts (and people and circumstances) contradicts not one, but two of the principles listed in his book:
1. “The ego says ‘your thoughts are very important’ but the Holy Spirit insists ‘Only thoughts you think with God are real—nothing else matters’”
2. “The ego says ‘There’s good and bad’ but the Holy Spirit maintains ‘There’s nothing to judge because it isn’t real in the first place’”.
I get the feeling that Dyer is enraptured by the recent popular teachings of Quantum Physics, A Course in Miracles and the Law of Attraction, without actually understanding or embodying the principles. (He’s not the first to do this with an idea. Many teachers get excited about new theories and then run out to teach them on the fly. In fact, I suspect that he does this quite often because he states in the book that the “best way to learn something is to teach it”.) As a result, some of his writing is rambling and vague. One of the universal laws of spirit is “where attention goes, energy flows”. If you’re focused on illness and fear—even in the name of banishing or preventing these undesired experiences—you’re still focused on them!
Why not, instead, focus on health, peace, and joy—as well as emotions that make you feel good? Dyer has failed to mention the crux of the Law of Attraction: the elevation and association of “feel good” emotions. Or, as author Michael Losier says, “blowing your fan”. That is, you’re emotional state while thinking certain thoughts is more important than the thoughts themselves!
Dyer also points out that we need to live in the Now, yet his negative affirmations encourages projection into the future, e.g., “I won’t attract further illness into my life”.
In line with classic Dyer teachings, there are some wonderful insights in Inspiration: Your Ultimate Calling—ones that can truly be life changing. I just wish he hadn’t muddied the clear waters of inspiration and in-spirited living with some armchair ambiguity about Quantum Physics and the Law of Attraction. These disconnected, contradictory ramblings could very likely discourage and confuse seekers trying to improve their lives or remember their continuous connection to the loving, constant Presence of All That Is.
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