Self Improvement, New Thought
Standing on the brink of the greatest shift in human history, which is due to occur in 2012, we sense that our purpose lies in shattering illusions that have inhibited us from reaching our true potential.
Internationally renowned clinical psychologist Carmen Harra explains that we must embrace wholeliness: the unity of humanity, the Divine, and the universe. Only by perceiving that we are both individuals and at one with the whole can we begin to eradicate our fears and draw on Divine support during this crucial time. Harra shows us how we can: regain trust in ourselves, others, and the spiritual realm; address the suffering we’ve caused to the human race throughout history; expand universal awareness and elevate our consciousness; and achieve a state of abundance, generosity, and joy so rich that we overflow with compassion.
Wholelinessis the nourishment we require to transcend a challenging era and foster unconditional fulfillment in our lives.
“Transformation of the external world must start within.”
Her title draws attention and comparison to the more commonly used word or spelling holiness. In essence she has drawn from the definition of holiness to bring us back to the original and yet a new understanding.
“The condition, state or quality of being healed, whole, and in harmony with the Divine and all that exists.”
From wikipedia: The English word holy dates back to at least the 11th Century with the Old English word halig, an adjective derived from hal meaning whole and used to mean 'uninjured, sound, healthy, entire, complete’.
The book moves back and forth within each chapter from personal to global reflecting the belief that transformation begins within each of us individually and moves outward. She blends together scientific and spiritual information working on the concept of “whole”liness. Each chapter concludes with three sections: “observe,” “pray,” and “act.”
What kept me focused on this book was the way she made the material accessible and personal. She included stories from her life that made the information come alive. There is also a prevailing sense of hope which provides relief from the current economic and political news. I have spent time going back through the book looking at the bits that I underlined. Near the end of the book she writes, “Note that every conflict offers a chance to create an experience of cooperation in which you and another person can further expand you thinking and experience wholeliness.” Imagine a world in which this thought process was commonplace. I hope this book becomes one of those books that is read by individuals so often that it becomes ragged in appearance in personal libraries.
Carmen Harra grew up in an environment drastically different than your average American citizen. Raised in Communist Romania, Harra describes her upbringing as “extremely poor” yet with a strong sense of family. “Despite our poverty,” she writes, “we felt rich in our ability to lift each other up through any phase of life.”
Lessons from Harra’s upbringing come through in her new book “Wholeliness: Embracing the Sacred Unity That Heals Our World”. Harra defines wholeliness as “the condition, state of quality of being healed, whole, and in harmony with the Divine and all that exists.” Reflecting on her childhood and life today she writes “I’d always found it helpful to take part in certain practices – such as praying and sharing meals with others – that connected me to wholeliness and helped me reject the idea that life is a constant struggle for survival.”
I was motivated by the many wholeliness “lessons” throughout the book. One feature I especially liked was how the author concluded each chapter with three steps for the reader to consider: Observe, Pray, and Act. I found these summaries helpful to anchor the main points each chapter was making. Observe: how in my present life am I not living in a way that supports wholeliness? Pray: pray for Spirit’s help in transforming me to a more “wholely” lifestyle. Act: what small steps can I take today to change? Transforming myself from a “me first” orientation to one of wholeliness is at first glance a daunting task. The action steps at the end of the chapter helped me to see the transformation can happen bit by bit.
As I have written before, coming out of a fundamentalist background to a more inclusive, whole spirituality has been part of my journey. I found truth in these words from Harra “The more that people feel insecure about what’s ahead, the more we can see them cling to whatever promises their safety. But fundamentalism will ultimately fade as we find comfort in wholeliness.”
The parts of the book that didn’t resonate with me as much were her chapters on numerology and astrology, and on communicating with the spirits of deceased relatives. Could these techniques help in achieving wholeliness? Perhaps, but I’m just not there yet. I also thought her predictions in the concluding chapter, such as “Barack Obama will be a one-term President”, veered away from her practical suggestions on how to live from a wholeliness perspective presented elsewhere in the book.
These are minor objections, though, as overall I feel “Wholeliness” is a book well worth reading. “You are part of a large family called the human race,” Herra writes. “Peace and power are yours when you realize that you’re never alone – that you’re always loved, heard, valued, and supported. This knowledge will give you the courage to believe in tomorrow and keep pressing forward, even when the road is treacherous and the path in front of you isn’t clear. That is the power of wholeliness.” I say amen to that, and Harra’s book is full of suggestions to help the reader live from a “wholeliness” orientation.