Quick Announcement for my UK readers: I will be speaking at the Mind Body Spirit Conference on May 2nd, in London. I’ll be on for 2 hours, which will give me the opportunity to not only premiere some awesome teachings from my upcoming book Deliberate Receiving, Finally the Universe Makes Some Freakin’ Sense, but also include a Q&A section. So if you’d like to have the opportunity to get all your manifesting questions answered, here’s your chance! Come and see me, and make sure to stick around after for smooshy, happy, shiny puppy hugs.
A couple of weeks ago, I was speaking at the Hay House Ignite Event in London. On my way to the Heathrow airport, the Universe orchestrated an amazing opportunity for me: to have an open, authentic conversation with someone who views the world in a drastically different way to the way I do. My London cabbie, a wonderful Nigerian gentleman with an easy and infectious smile, did not believe in the theory of evolution. During the conversation, he called it “scientific mumbo jumbo”, while adding the disclaimer that many religious people believe a lot of “ridiculous stuff”, too. I cherished this conversation, because creationists, in general, don’t really come into my reality. From what I gather, they’re not often open to the perspective that I offer, so this was a unique and wonderful experience for me and one I’m thrilled to be able to share with you in today’s blog post.
One of the elements that made this conversation so enjoyable and, in fact, even possible, is that neither one of us was trying to convince the other of our point of view. We weren’t arguing with each other, trying to be right and prove the other wrong. We were gently and respectfully debating the issue. With that in mind, I want to make it clear that I’m not writing this post in order to change anyone’s mind or to make the case that creationists, or scientists for that matter, have it wrong. I’m not trying to give you ammunition to go out into the world and convert the non-believers. All I’m doing is sharing an experience of two people with vastly different views engaging in a conversation in a truly authentic way (yes, it’s possible!), and finding common ground on a topic that’s about as controversial as it gets.
It all started with Elton John
The conversation started innocently enough. The cabbie asked if I’d heard about Dolce and Gabbana’s comments on IVF babies being “synthetic”, prompting Elton John to fire off a tweet: “How dare you refer to my beautiful children as ‘synthetic’?” In my naiveté, I assumed that the driver was in support of Camp Elton, and I replied that it seemed strange that two gay designers would issue a public statement that would alienate a large part of their clientele. As we drove through the streets of London, however, it became clear that he was actually siding with Team D&G, and was grappling with the question of whether or not IVF and indeed, homosexuality, were “natural”.
I’ve always found the word “natural” fascinating, and said so. After all, what is natural? Do we look to the animal kingdom? If so, homosexuality is rampant in the animal kingdom. I asked him what he felt were the dangers of IVF and particularly gay couples having babies in this manner. He offered up this view: to him, natural reproduction happens between a man and a woman, through the traditional method of doing the horizontal mambo (my words, not his). Anything other than that, is simply not in line with the design of the human race. If people begin to reproduce in unnatural ways and then raise their children to believe this is “normal”, soon there will be no more “natural” families left. At this point, I began to feel the underling fear behind his comments, and asked him if he was afraid that the human race would die out. He replied “yes”. I found this incredibly interesting. He wasn’t worried that we’d die out due to the destruction of the planet, because of environmental impact or war, he was afraid that our degradation of values would so change the population that we would essentially bring about our own destruction.
When I asked him if this dying out process wouldn’t, in fact, be mitigated by more couples taking care of more babies, by opening up the possibility for having children to not only “traditional” couples, but anyone with love to give, it became clear that he wasn’t so much afraid of humans dying out, as humanity as we know it changing so drastically that it might as well be considered dead.
The underlying fear
He told me that just a few days prior, he’d told his children that if he found an environment that was dirty, he’d want to clean it up. And if he found a clean environment, he’d want to do his best to keep it clean. From his point of view, he was stating his belief that we should keep things the way they are, that we shouldn’t “dirty” anything up with new views and deviant (deviating from the “norm”) behavior. But through my own filters, what I heard was this: he wanted very much to leave the world in a better state than he found it. And this is where we found our common ground, because that’s really all I’m doing with my work. We may be coming from vastly different places on this – his view was that the world was in danger of getting worse (MUCH worse), while I’m all about focusing on what’s getting better. In fact, I believe we are on the cusp of a huge evolutionary shift, crossing the threshold, with humanity waking up to its true power. But the underlying principle – a wish to make things better, was present in both of us.
It was clear to me that this wonderful gentleman so wanted to bring about positive change (or in his view, keep bad changes from happening), but simply didn’t trust humanity to do so. This is a pretty pervasive belief system in our society. In short, he feared change, believing that change brought about by other people would invariably be bad. If he could control the rate of change (a need to control others or our environment always stems from fear), he might be able to mitigate the damage. In other words, change brought about by others is dangerous, change brought about by ourselves (since we are the ones with the “correct” view) is good. When change is dangerous, “no change” is safer.
This belief system rests on the notion that we’re all basically degenerate animals who will bring about our own destruction if not kept in line with morals, laws and societal shaming. Of course, I don’t share this view, but it was infinitely fascinating to see it in action.
What is “natural”?
Let’s get back to the idea of what is “natural”. Like I said, I find the whole concept intriguing, especially since so many people use it as a basis for excusing prejudice. While talking to the taxi driver, I explored the idea of what natural child rearing “should” look like. Was adoption ok? Well, yes (if done by a man and a woman). I then brought up a story of some piglets who lost their mother, only to have a tiger step in and become their surrogate parent, as an example of interspecies mommying. Is the idea of one species caring for another unnatural? I asked him that considering the lives that many orphaned children face, if it wasn’t better for them to have a loving home, no matter who was doing the loving, rather than living in poverty, squalid conditions, or at best, growing up feeling unloved? He agreed that it was preferable for children to grow up feeling loved rather than not. He had been comparing the lives of adopted children to the wonderful ideal of all kids being born into a loving home, an ideal that simply doesn’t jive with what is actually happening in the world today. So, to deny a loving home to kids because unloved kids, on principle, simply shouldn’t exist, didn’t make sense to him either.
We delved further into the discussion, after he made sure I wasn’t offended; after all, if I was a completely different person (and he had no way of knowing that I wasn’t), I could’ve complained about this conversation to the taxi company. I assured him that I was enjoying myself immensely and that I’d keep talking about this subject as long as he was also willing to. His beliefs about what is “right” and “wrong” were being gently challenged, but he was also visibly having fun.
Is it “unnatural” for babies to be born via IVF? While I didn’t feel like exploring the idea of any baby being “synthetic” (they are not made of plastic…), no matter what method was used, I made the argument that it was simply a different way for couples, many of whom fit the “traditional” definition by the way, and who are otherwise unable to have children, to bring a loved child into the world. Considering the ideal of all children being born into loving homes, wouldn’t we want more of those? I posited the idea that our medical breakthroughs were simply a form of evolution. That’s when things really got interesting. He confessed that he didn’t believe in evolution. Of course, he was talking about the narrow definition of humans evolving from monkeys, whereas I use the word to describe our holistic evolution on a physiological, psychological and spiritual level. Again, I had no interest in convincing him to adopt a different point of view. He was free to believe whatever he wanted. I simply wanted to explore it.
Since our definitions of the word were so different, I didn’t feel that it would’ve been productive to get caught up in a discussion on whether or not evolution exists. To me it did, to him it didn’t, and that was ok. He believed that all living beings are created just as they are, which is another explanation for the fear of change. After all, if God created us all as we are, then any deviation from this perfect creation would be sacrilege. How can you even entertain the idea of positive change, if all change goes against the will of (a usually vengeful, hateful, smiting) God? And yet, we had found our common ground – he was not afraid of all change, just bad change. Never mind that he viewed all change that wasn’t tightly controlled as inherently bad. He wanted to see the world get better. And so did I.
As we talked about the animal kingdom, he said: “You know, humans are the only ones who try to justify their deviant behavior.” I thought about this and replied: “I’m not so sure about that. I believe that humans are the only ones who judge their behavior as deviant.” He didn’t have a reply to that, but I could see the gears turning. I have no way of knowing why this man attracted me or this conversation into his experience. But he was clearly being given access to a different point of view, and he wasn’t rejecting it outright. This is not to say that my point of view was better than his, but I believe that finding your own truth requires you to be open to trying out different perspectives, and he clearly was. I felt privileged to be a part of this process, as well as grateful for the opportunity to view the world through the eyes of someone with a belief system so drastically different from mine.
Instead of either/or, why not AND?
He asked me if I was a Christian. When I told him that I wasn’t, I think he assumed that I was one of those atheist science-y types. It was clear to him that I believed in science, and in his world, that meant that I couldn’t possibly also believe in God. After all, the two beliefs are mutually exclusive, right? In fairness, this is a belief held by many in the scientific community as well. We either evolved from apes, or God created us. It’s either one or the other. I introduced a different concept into the conversation. “So, you believe in evolution, then?” he probed. My response visibly surprised, even shocked him: “I believe in divine evolution.” I’m not sure he’d ever been exposed to that concept before.
I don’t believe that the scientists have it completely right. And I don’t believe that the creationists have it completely wrong. For me, my own personal truth lies in combining both. Why can’t evolution be an expression of the divine, simply the HOW of how our creation unfolds? Why can’t change – good, positive change, be a part of God’s plan? And ok, I don’t personally believe in “God’s plan”, as in, someone out there has a plan for us and it’s all predetermined. But I do believe that we are all divine, and that evolution, the evolution of ALL THAT IS, is part of that paradigm. And I do believe, in fact I know (for me) that we are all evolving, that we, in fact, can’t help it. I believe that the world is getting better, that we are in the process of waking up to our true divine nature, that we are inherently good, that we are MADE of love, made to love, and made to be loved. From my perspective, we hurt each other not because it’s in our “nature”, but because we believe that we have no choice (a false belief). And I believe that as we continue to evolve, we will rediscover our inherent goodness in a way we’ve never done before. I believe that everything, every human, animal, insect, tree, mountain, and drop of water in the ocean is part of this evolution. This evolution may play out through biological processes, through natural selection and the mutation of genes, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t divinely inspired.
It’s not about survival
I found this glimpse into the energy of someone so foreign to me to be incredibly enlightening. Here was a person who so badly wanted the world and its inhabitants to survive, but was terrified and pretty much convinced that it wouldn’t. His focus was on the very survival of the human race, and yet for me, our journey is no longer about merely surviving. It’s about thriving. It’s time to stop being so afraid of each other. It’s time to stop assuming that others, those out there who don’t agree with us, will inevitably screw the pooch, no matter which side of the debate (whichever debate) we’re on. It’s time to start trusting each other, to respect each other, to listen to each other and to find the common ground that’s always, ALWAYS there. It’s time to see the inherent goodness in each other, the strong desire to feel better and the drive to evolve (whether you call it that or not). I think conversations like the one I’ve shared with you today are a good starting point.
When we arrived at the airport, the driver helpfully unloaded my bags. I reached out with my hand and shook his, eliciting that brilliant smile from him. And then I surprised him one more time when I made eye contact, held his gaze and genuinely and authentically said, “God bless you.”
I’m pretty sure he’d never met anyone quite like me before. I surprised him, may have confused him, and possibly even triggered him a little. But I definitely made him think, as he did me. Perhaps this blog post will do the same for you and open up the opportunity for a conversation of your own.
If you feel this post has been valuable to you and you think it might be for others, as well, please share it on Facebook or Twitter and spread the love. And as always, I can’t wait to read your comments.
Freaking AWESOME! One day I hope to be able to communicate my beliefs as you have as I agree with you whole heartedly. Love LOve LOVEEEE your blog and can’t wait for the book! smooches!!
After grappling with the ideas of religion for so long, it, trying to figure out right and wrong it occurred to me that religion encompasses a security for uncertain times. A comfort buffer for those in need. I had come to the conclusion that humanity is having an awakening – we are becoming rational and thinking without those crutches religion gives. I don’t think there is anything wrong with that, however I get incensed when it gets used in the wrong way and abused- for gains rather than peace and comfort of others.
After reading these posts, I feel enlightened and comforted to know their can be a higher being, divinity without the evangelistic bells and whistles, the need for churches and without the ties to one particular religion or church. I feel at peace with this now, more than ever. Thank you Melody and your contributors for helping me.
I look forward to reading all your posts!
Yes good one at that !Wonderful stuff. If I could only tell you
what is, would not believe how great one is…you all are…
The path you are all on is wonderful… believe me…
This is an interesting post. How refreshing that you were both simply having a conversation, not arguing but just learning from each other. 🙂
I remember years ago somebody told me that I couldn’t believe in God and evolution but I thought, “Why can’t I believe that God created the apes?”! lol. These days I believe that there is some force in the world and maybe we just all experience it differently and give it different names- God, Goddess, universe, source etc. And I love the idea of “And” instead of “either/or”.
It made me smile the way you described this process of communication between radically belief systems. 😀 It is very important… Not only when dealing with different cultures, but also in personal life. It is also nice to have boundaries, which serve not only for self-protection but also to allow ourselves not to be stuck… (which is shown is this post). And when your personal life has the issue of different cultures, is extra-challenging, but still could be an enriching experience. 🙂
To many religious folks, their religious book (bible, koran, etc.) is a history book. As far they are concerned, the book contains real history. I feel it’s not nice to yank someone out of their belief comfort zone – they will be lost without it. It would be too cruel to point out all the flaws in the book(s). It would be much gentler to let them explore and discover other truths out there for themselves.
the opposite of right is wrong.
the opposite of the truth is another truth
LOL! “Me dammit!” Took me a little while to figure that one out.
You are not alone, on that one, A! It took me a little while, too.
Yes *time* means growing to greatness…
Pls. let me answer…
* Always open *
If it would be the other way around we would indeed be in a lot of trouble…
Hope I do not have to tell the other part of this story.
The rabbit hole is a whole lot better, believe me.
Love you , awesome…
First of all, let,s talk about systems. We exist in what kind of system and in relation
to our present live beliefs. I am speaking in terms of present times… Or passed times
With all the population on this planet we believe we are on and growing.
Just need clarification, *Open or closed*
This really got me thinking. I have had many, many, encounters such as this. At first, I was angry and tried to change someones mind. Then, eventually it became a conversation. Next, I asked more questions to get to the root of their belief and nudge them to love. Now, when someone wants to engage in a conversation I just listen. I don’t speak until they ask. It is usually brief. When I leave I tend to wish them well and hope one day they will evolve. Now, I am thinking should I be engaging longer and not just walk away. I do not have to need to explain anything. Just wondering!
On another note, something you said really stopped me in my tracks. Our journey is no longer about merely surviving. It’s about thriving…etc.
Since being on the path to receive more and have a joyful, abundant life. I realized I believed people just try to survive. That is what I see on a daily basis and grew up living that way. I never thought that I could be here to, thrive.
Thank you for that one little phrase. I feel like my world just expanded.
love you Melody!
Hi Melody! What a great way of exploring a conversation between two people that appear to be so very incompatible and instead showing that you were both hoping for the same thing (from different vantage points). It reminds me of the work of Marshall Rosenberg and his nonviolent communication because when we can approach each other nondefensively it is much easier to see that people usually do what they do (or want what they want) because it will increase the qualify of their life in some way or “do what is life most life enhancing for them.” And while we might be able to clearly see that they are off the mark, we all really want to do that same thing. When we can get to that “space” we can really see the unity and interdependence of all life. Thanks! ~Kathy
It’s amazing to realise that we almost unanimously believe that our so-called “animal instincts” are an undeniably natural pattern of behaviour and are hence unchangeable and have always been the way we perceive them now since the beginning of time. We conveniently forget that the expression “Animal Instincts” is little more than a handy classification – an excuse – for uncaring, selfish behaviour. We love to categorise, to put away under a heading, to pretend that we understand, so that we can get back to doing whatever it was that was so important before we were interrupted and are rarely able to internalise anyone else’s interpretation of the world, because we just don’t listen.
Open, unbiased, interested debate is a wonderful thing, perhaps because it allows us to question, juggle and play with the very words that we use to communicate ideas and concepts. There is, indeed, hope.
Wow! I was tearing up reading this. I never understood why people would argue over whether it was God or the Big Bang that created us. Why could we not have been created by an intelligent entity via the Big Bang? I never understood why they had to be separate. I LOVE the term “divine evolution”. It is the perfect mixture of science and faith. 🙂
I live in the “bible belt” so I am surrounded by people like this all the time.
Sometimes I wish there weren’t so many creationists in my reality. LOL! It would be awesome to have someone who believes the way I do to talk to and hang out with. But I know I am where I am for a reason and maybe I’ll figure that out one day and maybe I’ll make a new friend or two who believes like I do – I know they exist around here dammit. I’ve heard stories – which I know that means they are on the way into my physical reality, so it’s all good. 🙂
I usually just smile and don’t say much when conversations go in this direction. You are very correct about creationists not being open to other perspectives. Most people I know are FIRM in their beliefs and don’t take well to those who challenge them. I remember a long time ago I was talking to a pretty much lifelong friend of mine (we were teenagers I think before I knew anything at all about LOA) and I forget how the conversation got started but I asked her “Do you ever wonder where God came from?” and she said “I don’t ask questions like that. I don’t even THINK about stuff like that.” I was like “Wow! ok.” That nipped that convo in the bud. Another time, when we were adults, somehow we got on the topic of aliens and I said as big as the Universe is, there has to be something other than us right? She said “No! Because if there are aliens, it means there is no God.” That REALLY ended that conversation. And most people I know are like this. Which makes me think that maybe they are not as secure in their beliefs as they appear to be.
I am very firm in my belief in LOA at this point, so I just don’t see the point in trying to get them to see a different perspective, not yet anyway. It would be really interesting though to get the chance to have a real conversation like this with someone who believes differently from myself – yet is still open to other ideas. What an awesome opportunity.
This post has brought new meaning to the term “We are One” for me. We all really want the same things. We just go about it differently. It makes me view our creationist brothers and sisters in a much different light. Being someone who is surrounded by them, I definitely needed that. Thank you! 🙂
Melody you always explain things that awaken the mind and spirit so elegantly! I agree that we are evolving for the better. The problem I see is that a large portion of the population is struggling with this major shift and it has personally hurt and effected me terribly. More and more people are losing their minds, addicted to drugs and alcohol, are suicidal and even more worse homicidal. So what is to become of the masses that just can’t handle it. Any views on this would be greatly appreciated!!!
This was such an interesting read. I too really don’t encounter people who have these sorts of beliefs. I too agree that science and spirituality are not mutually exclusive concepts. When I encounter situations where information that contradicts my belief system comes into my orbit, I have almost no reaction to it. Over time, my experience validating LOA in particular, has been so strong, there would be no convincing me otherwise. And as such, the need to argue my point of view is pretty much non-existent. I also tend not to share my opinion when someone else is sharing beliefs counter to mine..I just politely listen and enjoy the opportunity to learn more about what makes others tick and understand different perspectives. It really is so interesting.
Just incredible. I don’t think I can ever reach this emotional level or ever have the kind of clarity that you have, Melody. So, I’m just grateful to have read this post. It was so beautiful!
Also, this may be a totally irrelevant example but it came to mind because I had it today. This afternoon, I had the opportunity to hear a story about a man and his car. The story goes like this: The man thinks that the kind of car a person drives makes all the difference in her life’s experiences. He explained that when he drove a Corolla, people would cut him and honk at him but now that he drives around in a Lexus (he did a car upgrade, his words not mine ;)), he gets treated better and that people don’t honk at him. This was a brilliant eye opener for me because I hold so many such similar thinking patterns. If I dressed better, people would treat me better, if I spoke better, people would treat me better, if I was smarter, people would blah blah blah. People are treating me a lot better nowadays and if they don’t it doesn’t bother me as much as it used to. EXACTLY WHAT YOU SAID WOULD HAPPEN. And I don’t feel a thing even if they meant any unintentional harm. I don’t even sit to overanalyze (I think I used to have borderline personality disorder but you Doctor Melody treated it through the calls I had with you and through reading your posts). Obviously, because I have these thought patterns, (not turning the blame inward, oh gosh been there done that did not like it, but taking responsibility) I saw more and more evidence of it. But, I have these so deep rooted in me that even with positive affirmations, it’s super hard to change. With your help, lots has changed in my life Angel Melody. Oh sorry, I hope I don’t offend any of your puppies if I change the name you’re known by, which is Magical Melody and I’m doing a lot of it in this post. Lol. I know my comments may sound like fulsome praise sometimes but I mean it. I just can’t help it. Like evolving. 🙂 Anyway, going back to the man and his car. I got super defensive and felt agitated. Perhaps it is because I drive a corolla, and I just realized that while typing out this comment. Anyway, I was able to just not blow anything out of proportion. From reading your wonderful, insightful blog post (which is aspirational experience for me), I see how different my experience was from yours. I hope after I read your awesome book, I make a BIG QUANTUM LEAP and then I too start to have calm discussions and see what ‘I want to see’, ‘hear what I want to hear’ and be so centered in the middle of turbulence (no offense to the gentleman in your post, it’s just that I see it that way because of where I am right now). Thanks again, as always for such a beautiful post. I just love how you talk about so many different interesting thought provoking topics and put your perspective out there into the world so respectfully (there are very few people who do that but quite frankly, IMHO that is what changes the world and I just admire leaders like you). Plus, you explain everything so lovingly and patiently. I read TONS of books from many different genres in non fiction (I read for pleasure and then forget all about it.) Anyway, many times while reading, I think, damn that’s what Melody said but she explained it so much better. Thank you, Melody so much. You’re the best person (for me) in the whole universe.
sorry, I meant *comment*, not post. But it’s as good as a post, because it’s long(acc to me). It was also an aspirational comment. I used to read the comments on this blog and think, wow I wish I could respond that way and type such long comments. I guess, I got that wish granted today. ha ha.
It’s great that you’re commenting, Rose. 🙂 I never used to comment before but this was one of the first blogs I started commenting on a couple of years ago.
And I’m glad to hear Melody has helped you. It’s inspiring to read stories of how people’s lives are improving. Good luck with making more positive changes! 🙂
Thank you, Moonsparkle. I used to comment earlier as well but I’m a little scared to read my own earlier comments. 😉 I don’t know for sure where I am right now but atleast I know it feels eons away from where I used to be. I hope I make positive changes going forward. I have worked with coaches, therapists, counselors, (even neurosurgeons ;)) in the past and within a month or even less of working with each of them something would happen and Iwould stop working with them. No offense to any of them, they were all wonderful people (and so am I :)) and I’m very grateful to each and every one of them but in this lifetime, Melody is the one gifted person, among all I’ve met who I can never ever forget. Melody has a VERY rare gift! I am really quite a monster 😉 and I feel really lucky to have met Melody. 🙂
Hi Rose, sorry I didn’t reply earlier, I didn’t get notified that you’d replied. 🙂
Sometimes I feel a bit weird reading over my comments! I’ve been scared for ages about offering my opinion but I’m glad that I’m doing it more now.
I’m glad that you are a lot better than you used to be and it’s been helping you working with Melody. Maybe you weren’t ready before, it wasn’t the right time or the other people just weren’t right for you. It’s good when you find someone you really resonate with. 🙂
Yes Moonsparkle it’s like Fairyland in here. 🙂 And yes, you’re right. It just wasn’t the right time for me with those other people. I’m really lucky to have connected with the melodious magical Melody. 🙂
What a beautiful, beautiful post. I had so many a-ha moments when reading this, and I could feel the unconditional love flowing from your interaction with this man. Also, I love the phrase “divine evolution” 🙂
Melody, as always, you are amazing. I have had similar conversations with Christians. When I say it’s all about love at the end of the day I find they have no more to say because that’s what they truly believe anyway, that Jesus was all about love, and then suddenly you are not viewed as against them in any way. I have made massive inroads into their hearts because of this. If we come from love (not necessarily the easiest thing to do for anyone), any argument just fades away. Thank you for being you. You always help explain it all so well.
awesome Melody! it must have felt so fantastic to be able to have a completely non judgemental authentic conversation. I felt a huge warm glow inside as I read the later part! that’s a win win for sure. what a great maniefestation.
love to you. b x
I really enjoyed this post because it gives me so much to think about. I want to be in that mindset where I can talk with others who believe very differently than me without judgment or feeling defensive. I love how you stayed at an emotional level where you could have the conversation without having to prove anything. I like how you posed questions and had more of a conversation rather than a debate. Do you think he came into your experience because he was willing to listen? I would love to know some tips of what to do to keep yourself in that positive place to have conversations like this.
Love the notion of Divine Evolution. Agree completely. And this was very beautifully written, especially the part about us trusting each other. You rock!
Wow, Melody!!! Reading this, I felt emotional at times and I was completely surprised by your reactions and your thoughts. You have such a skill to be able to see other’s point of view and understand people’s fear instead of being threatened by it. It gave me a lot to think about and interacting with people is something I’ve been working on myself. Thanks for the nugget of insight!