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Experiencing God

by Mother Clare Watts


Experiences of God can occur over a very broad range of situations and circumstances. Many people feel God’s Presence with them when they ask for God’s help or support. Many also tune into a greater Consciousness, a Source and Intelligence when they are awed by nature’s beauty and diversity. Many are profoundly struck at a birth or a death of a loved one that there is clearly more than what we see here. But could you actually have a deep and personal relationship with God in which you feel, hear and come to know God?

Mystics of all religions have always sought to discover the way into actually experiencing God, directly and personally. Though they embrace different religious teachings and practices, some mystics from every tradition have found their way into the presence and direct experience of God. They left behind poems and treatises, songs and prayers attesting to the knowledge of God that they had acquired through their mystical encounters with their Creator. Though they may call the Creator different names, all found the same Creator when they traveled to the center of their beings. And all came out with very similar experiences and testimonials to what such an encounter does to the soul who embraces it.

Finding one’s way to God always starts by addressing the level of your will and your desire to undertake this journey. It will be quite different from simply feeling awe for God while watching a beautiful sunset. This journey will require that you become willing to make it the most important element in your life. If you decide to undertake the voyage to the God-Self inside of you, you will need to set aside a significant amount of time each week and some time each day to develop the skills to enter into the spiritual world. You will need to learn to still your body, mind and emotions in order to hear the “still, small voice” from within. You will need to humble your pride and take down your greed while developing true generosity of spirit, facing how selfish you have been and deciding to learn to love with all your heart. You will need to develop a longing and yearning for a spiritual teacher to guide you, and then agree to let yourself be taught. You will need to be willing to discover that before God you are nothing, and yet you are so totally loved that you will melt while experiencing it.

If you are willing to do what it takes, it is available. We, at the Centers of Light, await with patient understanding and open arms those who want to see if this might be their way, as well as those who wish to throw themselves into the lake of consciousness,. Do not hesitate if you are feeling the call. Opportunities do not always reappear. Follow your heart, if it is nudging you to begin your Path to God. We will be there when you arrive.

Mother Clare Watts is a mystic, ordained priest, Master Teacher, and Co-Director of an independent, mystical Christian Order and spiritual school that has spiritual centers, called Centers of Light, in 15 cities nationwide. She holds a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology, with extensive post-graduate training in Jungian analysis, is a Certified Professional Midwife, and has enjoyed successful careers in both fields. She is the mother of four grown children and currently lives in Dolores, Colorado, where she directs The Peace Temple Initiative – an organization working to build a retreat center for peace workers from around the world. She is a nationally known speaker and lectures in a different city nearly every weekend of the year. She has also been a featured guest on several radio broadcast programs, including Wisconsin Public Radio’s At Issue with Ben Merens, Contact Radio in Seattle, and Seeing Beyond in San Francisco. Jim Lewis, author of The Oxford Handbook of New Religions, as well as 11 other works, and leading scholar internationally on new religious movements, is currently writing a scholarly book about the Order that Mother Clare co-directs, expected to be published in the spring of 2009.

Mother Clare has found recent acclaim as the author of the book, Giving Birth to God: A Woman's Path to Enlightenment. This moving account of her life tells of her journey through yoga ashrams and Sufi training schools to find a mystical Christian spiritual school with Master Teachers. Wonderfully moving stories give an in-depth rendering of the inner spiritual path. As she writes in the book, “Each of us was created with the full potential to become masters over everything on Earth, not so that we might dominate the Earth, but so that we might bless it with consciousness
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