The significant problems we're facing aren't being solved: wars drag on, millions suffer severe drought and famine, ice caps melt, global financial markets collapse, terrorism continues. People have lost faith in many of our institutions -- schools that don't teach, governments that can't govern, marriages that don't endure, religions that fail to use their moral authority to end the world's sufferings.
What do we, as individuals, need to do to make an impactful difference, not just in making these situations better, but in ending them. The story we tell ourselves is that we can't make a difference, that one individual can't take on a problem -- war, hunger, disease -- and end it. We're encouraged to believe that one individual can't take on an institution -- government, the financial industry, the church -- and make it work. Yet we can make a difference. We can choose to change our story from hopelessness, powerlessness, and resignation to promise, leadership and action.
Hope lies in creating a new story of what it means to be human and what it means to be humanity. We need to change our narrative so that it touches our souls and engages us to participate in creating the kind of world we long for. We need to change our vision so that it unleashes what we already know deep in our souls about the kind of world we want, that helps set free our optimism and energy, and that supports us in taking the steps to make our vision for our world real.
At present, we know how to create Hell on Earth. What would it be like to create the opposite -- Heaven on Earth? What do we need to do right now to start? Whether it's Heaven or Hell, it is our story.
Responsibility is a critical factor in creating our new story -- responsibility for the world working. It's not responsibility as 'burden,' it's responsibility as 'freedom to choose,' so that we can choose the kind of global story we want.
It's easy to begin. Here's how:
1. Recall a time when you experienced Heaven on Earth.
2. Imagine you have a magician's wand and can create Heaven on Earth. What is Heaven on Earth for you?
3. What simple, easy, concrete action will you take in the next 24 hours to help make this real?
Each of us starts by asking and answering these questions for ourselves and perhaps of two others. By engaging people in creating Heaven on Earth, we help create a new, fresh, story for the world. That world becomes full of opportunities and brimming with possibility. Into this new human story we are invited to creatively contribute how we can each make a difference. The new story of Heaven on Earth provides the context, but it is you, the individual, who creates the content. If you speak to just two people today about Heaven on Earth and each of them speaks to two the next day and so on and so on, everyone on the planet can be spoken to in only 32 days!
To the skeptics who ask, "What about those for whom Heaven on Earth would be eliminating a particular ethnic group or a deeply entrenched belief, or continuing to pollute the environment?" Yes, there are a minority of people in the world who hold those perspectives but they are not the majority. Ask yourself, "How am I personally responsible for holding similar beliefs?" And then ask yourself, "Am I willing to join the vast majority of people in the world who want a good and decent and working world?"
Historically, the problem with world visions is that they seek to impose their view, "Follow my way and it will all work." But imposing a vision never works. It can't because it removes the freedom to choose. The vision of creating Heaven on Earth is different in a very significant way. It doesn't impose, it evokes. It evokes the global vision that already lives within each of us. Letting that vision emerge is letting our innate wisdom lead.
People do know the kind of world they want, but they're overwhelmed at the thought of making it happen, or embarrassed at what people might say if they talk about it. Once people are given the opportunity to discover their own truth about the kind of world they want and feel free to talk about it a powerful transformation occurs. A part of themselves they've always known, but haven't met, is revealed. And once this evoked vision of Heaven on Earth is unleashed, a simple, powerful, and effective creativity emerges that begins positively impacting the world.
We can begin to have the kind of world we long for. We can begin living a new story of what it means to be human and what it means to be humanity. We can begin creating Heaven on Earth here and now.