Conversations with God: An Uncommon Dialogue, Book 1
by Neale Donald Walsch
Conversations with God is one of my all-time favorite spiritual books — right up there with; Oneness by Rasha, and The New Earth by Eckhart Toole. It's actually a series of four books, and book 1 is just the beginning of a lengthy but always engaging and intriguing conversation.
The books are quite controversial, especially amongst traditional Christians, which likely view much of the ideas contained as borderline blasphemy, if not full-on blasphemy. I found the perspectives offered in this book (and the rest of the books in the series) very refreshing and they resonated deeply with me. But decide for yourself. All I suggest is that you keep an open mind and believe only that which resonates with your heart, and is consistent with the greater good of all regardless of the source. This is my credo anyway.
The first thing you'll notice about the book is its cover, and quite frankly, its cover is underwhelming. But as the old saying goes
You can't judge a book by its cover and this has never been truer for any book than for Conversations with God. Because once you open the book and start reading it, you will likely be blown away — for better or for worse. Many people find it contains much profound information bordering on revelation, and as I said, others find it borderline blasphemous.
Book 1 starts off with the poignant story of how Neale came to write the book. Neale was going through some very hard times in his life and in a moment of utter frustration, despair, and anger decided to write a letter to God. It was a passionate scathing letter full of condemnations and angry questions.
Why wasn't his life working? Why were all his relationships such disasters? Why was his financial life such a disaster? And finally — what had he done to deserve a life with so much struggle?
As he scratched out his final bitter words and was about to set down his pen, to his surprise, his hand remained poised over the paper. And then abruptly, the pen began moving on its own. Neale had no idea what he was about to write, but ideas seem to be coming so he let them flow onto the paper:
"Do you really want an answer to all these questions, or are you just venting?"
His heart skipped a beat, and then his reply came out onto the paper.
"Sure I'm venting, but if you've got answers, I'd sure as hell like to hear them!"
And this is how the conversation began, and which continued in this fashion for three whole years! He was not writing so much as taking dictation because, until he asked a question, he really had no idea what was going to come next.
The conversation that ensued, and that has now produced four books, is a witty, humorous, and thoroughly entertaining dialog between Neale and God. Did you know that God has a great sense of humor? At least as expressed through Neale Donald Walsch he does. Of course, Neale's (and everyone's) innermost or highest self is his God-Self, so that creates the amusing proposition that Neale is sort of just talking to himself. If the idea that your innermost self, your highest self, is your God-self is new to you, then take a look at my article Discovered Your God-Self?
The first burning question the Neale asked of God was "How do you communicate, and to whom?" And when God had explained the subtle and multifaceted ways that he communicates to us Neale's next question was "How can I be sure that a message is from God? And how do I know this very dialog is not my own imagination?" And the questions continued...
- Does God only communicate to special people? At special times?
- Why do some people, take Christ for example, seem to hear more of your communication than others?
- Why haven't you revealed yourself in some obvious an incontrovertible way?
- Is there one true path to God?
And these questions were just a warmup because the answers that he received begged more questions which led to more answers that begged even more questions, in an ever-expanding circle. Many of the questions relate to Neale's personal challenges in the areas of money, relationship, career, and health. But of course, the answers contain wisdom that applies to everyone and which uncovers many deeper truths and many more important and interesting topics including the following:
- Our true relationship to God and the amazing power, freedom, and responsibility we have been bestowed with.
- The laws of creation and the nature of the creational process.
- The core polarity that powers all creation — love versus fear — and all of its multitude of implications.
- The real reasons why we are here in our physical reality.
- How and why God sub-divided itself into the many focal points of consciousness that are us.
- The real reasons "bad" things happen to us. And how we can transcend these types of experiences.
- The real truth about heaven and hell, the devil and the like (and you may find the answer very surprising).
- The true nature of good and evil.
- The fallacy of one true path to God.
- The many misconceptions we have about the nature of God.
- The fallacy of a punishing judgmental God.
- The true nature of suffering, how we create it in our reality, and how we can transcend it.
- The true nature of karma, karmic debt, and karmic lessons.
- The preeminence of choice and freewill and its relation to responsibility and creation.
- Self-realization and the path to mastery.
And this list still doesn't do justice to what is explored in this book. Honestly, if there was only one book to read this one (actually the entire series) might be the one. I'd make it required reading for everyone on the planet, that's how important I feel these books and the wisdom they contain is.
I wholeheartedly encourage you to see for yourself,
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Excerpts from the Book:
- I communicate to everyone. All the time. The question is not to whom do I communicate, but who listens? My most common form of communication is through feeling. Feeling is the language of the soul. If you want to know what's true for you about something, look to how you're feeling about it. Feelings are sometimes difficult to discover — and often even more difficult to acknowledge. Yet hidden in your deepest feelings are your highest truth. The trick is to get to those feelings. — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1
- Every heart which earnestly asks, Which is the path to God? is shown. Each is given a heartfelt Truth. Come to Me along the path of your heart, not through a journey of your mind. You will never find Me in your mind. — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1
- There is no such thing as “getting to heaven”. There is only a knowing that you are already there. There is an accepting, an understanding, not a working for or a striving. You cannot go to where you already are. To do that, you would have to leave where you are, and that would defeat the whole purpose purpose of the journey. The irony is that most people think they have to leave where they are to get to where they want to be. And so they leave heaven in order to get to heaven — and go through hell. Enlightenment is understanding that there is nowhere to go, nothing to do, and nobody you have to be except exactly who you're being right now. You are on a journey to nowhere. Heaven — as you call it — is nowhere. Let's just put some space between the N and the H in that word and you'll see that heaven is now ... here. — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1
- All human actions are motivated at their deepest level by two emotions — fear or love. In truth there are only two emotions — only two words in the language of the soul.... Fear wraps our bodies in clothing, love allows us to stand naked. Fear clings to and clutches all that we have, love gives all that we have away. Fear holds close, love holds dear. Fear grasps, love lets go. Fear rankles, love soothes. Fear attacks, love amends. — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1
- What the soul is after is — the highest feeling of love you can imagine. This is the soul's desire. This is its purpose. The soul is after the feeling. Not the knowledge, but the feeling. It already has the knowledge, but knowledge is conceptual. Feeling is experiential. The soul wants to feel itself, and thus to know itself in its own experience. The highest feeling is the experience of unity with All That Is. This is the great return to Truth for which the soul yearns. This is the feeling of perfect love. Perfect love is to feeling what perfect white is to color. Many think that white is the absence of color. It is not. It is the inclusion of all color. White is every other color that exists, combined. So, too, love is not the absence of an emotion (hatred, anger, lust, jealousy, covetousness), but the summation of all feeling. It is the sum total. The aggregate ... the everything. Thus, for the soul to experience perfect love, it must experience every human feeling. How can I have compassion on that which I don't understand? How can I forgive in another that which I have never experienced in Myself? So we see both the simplicity and the awesome magnitude of the soul's journey. We understand at last what it is up to: The purpose of the human soul is to experience all of it — so that it can be all of it. — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1
- In the beginning, that which Is is all there was, and there was nothing else. Yet All That Is could not know itself — because All That Is is all there was, and there was nothing else. For in the absence of something else, All That Is, is not. Now All That Is knew it was all there was — but this was not enough, for it could only know its utter magnificence conceptually, not experientially. Yet the experience of itself is that for which it longed, for it wanted to know what it felt like to be so magnificent. Still, this was impossible, because the very term “magnificent” is a relative term. All That Is could not know what it felt like to be magnificent unless that which is not showed up... In order to do this, It realized It would have to use a reference point within. It reasoned, quite correctly, that any portion of Itself would necessarily have to be less than the whole, and that if It thus simply divided Itself into portions, each portion, being less than the whole, could look back on the rest of Itself and see magnificence. And so All That Is divided Itself — becoming, in one glorious moment, that which is this, and that which is that. — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1
- You have projected the role of “parent” onto God, and have thus come up with a God Who judges and rewards or punishes, based on how good He feels about what you've been up to. But this is a simplistic view of God, based on your mythology. It has nothing to do with Who I Am. Having thus created an entire thought system about God based on human experience rather than spiritual truths, you then create an entire reality around love. It is a fear-based reality, rooted in the idea of a fearful, vengeful God. Its Sponsoring Thought is wrong, but to deny that thought would be to disrupt your whole theology. — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1
- I have no form or shape you understand. I could adopt a form or shape that you could understand, but then everyone would assume that what they have seen is the one and only form and shape of God, rather than one of many. People believe I am what they see Me as, rather than what they do not see. But I am the Great Unseen, not what I cause Myself to be in any particular moment. Yet when I come in one particular form or another — a form in which I think people can understand Me — people assign Me that form forevermore. And should I come in any other form, to any other people, the first say I did not appear to the second, because I did not look to the second as I did to the first, nor say the same things — so how could it have been Me? — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1 (pg. 18)
- Every prayer — every thought, every statement, every feeling — is creative. To the degree that it is fervently held as truth, to that degree will it be made manifest in your experience. When it is said that a prayer has not been answered, what has in actuality happened is that the most fervently held thought, word, or feeling has become operative. Yet what you must know — and here is the secret — is that always it is the thought behind the thought — what might be called the Sponsoring Thought — that is the controlling thought. — Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 1 (pg. 20)