Donna Quesada: So the idea is to recognize the creators that we are? You said a moment ago to be the cause, and not the effect.
In other words, to not be victims of what’s happening on this planet, but to have the power to affect real change, starting with ourselves.
Marianne Williamson: There are three categories, as I said, of choice, in how do I choose to inhabit this moment in time? We’ve already talked about how this is a parallel… the moment when one historical era is passing away, and another historical era is struggling to be born. If you think of what’s happening down beneath, in South America where the Pacific is going into the Atlantic, these are very turbulent waters. Anytime you have one who’s passing away, giving birth to another, this tumult… we’re no different than any other. We were a new millennium.
Okay, we’re moving away from a mechanistic paradigm to a paradigm of realization that life is consciousness. And it’s not just the machine as a British physicist said… it turns out the world is not just one big machine, it’s one big thought. So as these two paradigms bump into each other, and we are governed by institutions of tremendous material power that reflect an increasingly obsolete worldview. What’s happening is that there are these two parallel universes and we are called upon to be doulas to the world that needs to pass away and we are called upon to be birth doulas to that which is coming forth now… You have three basic categories and each of us has to make a decision for ourselves. All of us are microcosms… the world itself is going to chaos… all of us, in our own lives are experiencing to some extent, their own personal circumstances. 1) Just be the effect of the chaos. Do what you can to numb yourself… do what you can to suppress it and good luck to you 2) You develop the capacity to endure these times as you are able to, to rise above it… enough that you are able to endure it. 3) Is where you’re not just lifted… you’ve developed your wings and you become not only someone who knows how to endure this time, but you become someone who is working to transform this time that you’re in.
Donna: You’re flying.
Marianne: You’re flying. You are one of the angels because the Course of Miracles says angels are the thoughts of God. Yeah, and I think that’s the activation that we’re all feeling… this yearning, yearning, you know, this civilization is so wounded, and we all have to think of ourselves as immune cells. The body can take a lot of assault and injury and disease as long as there’s a healthy immune system. And civilization can take a lot of wounding, which it’s experiencing now.
As long as we see ourselves as immune cells… Every cell is guided through a kind of natural intelligence to where it can best be used, whether it’s the pancreas or the bones or the lungs or the blood or whatever. And then it collaborates with other cells. That’s the highest actualization of the cell in the body… to collaborate with other cells, and to serve the healthy functioning of the organ and the organism of which they are a part.
Every once in a while, a cell goes insane. It disconnects from its natural intelligence, and then it disconnects from its collaborative function, and it goes off to do its own thing. That’s what cancer is. It’s a malignancy in the body, and it’s a malignancy in consciousness, and that is what has happened to the human race. We have been infected by the thought… the malignant thought that it’s all about me. Yeah, it’s not all about me. It’s about each of us, finding our collaborative function with other people with whom we can serve more than we could have served by ourselves. You and I doing this podcast, you couldn’t do it without me. I couldn’t do it without you.
Donna: So to continue the analogy of the cells, it’s the cells working together to awaken the body…
Marianne: That is the awakening. That is the awakening. It’s not just about me. You know, I found in my life… I can honestly say 90% of the time, or maybe 100%, but I think it’s probably around 90% of the time, when I have a problem, the solution rests in my saying to myself, “Oh, Marianne, get over yourself. Get over yourself.” That’s totally the wake up. This isn’t just about you. This isn’t just about your feelings. There’s something so much bigger going on here.
Donna: What has been your greatest challenge? Just to add to that, we were talking about how you know, enlightenment doesn’t mean you suddenly become perfect… because life is challenging. It’s challenging to be a human. And people think that because you have a practice Oh, your problems go away, but it’s not that at all. What’s your greatest challenge?
Marianne: Well, we heal through a kind of detox process. Stuff has to come up in order to get out. My biggest challenge has been my own personality. I can be… I can be moody. I can be crabby, I can be dismissive, I can be lacking in sensitivity. Now, took me a while to realize that to the extent to which I’ve come to realize it, but I have gotten old enough… that, you get to a certain age and you spend a lot of time thinking about your life and what you’ve experienced.
And I’ve had some very, very disappointing experiences in my life. But I have come to realize that the person who has done me in the most has been me. The person who has sabotaged me the most has been me, the person who has been at cause of the vast majority of my problems in life has been me. And that’s what the work is. Every time your heart is open. And of course, the Course in Miracles says that at every moment you you are either opening your heart in love… and when you do, miracles occur naturally… Or, for whatever reason, your own pain, your own triggers… you shut your heart and you deflect the miracle.
But I think what we need to… at least, what has been very helpful to me, is to realize… Stop it with the excuses. Stop it with the excuses. We are responsible for our effect. And when you’re loving, really good things are gonna happen. And when you withhold love, you’re gonna block the miracles that would otherwise occur. It is that simple. But once again, life is complicated. So to say that it’s simple, doesn’t mean it’s always easy, because all of us are wounded. But I think that was what came up for me, was realizing the fact that you’re wounded is not an excuse.
Donna: That’s right. And conversely, what has been your greatest accomplishment?
Marianne: That I have such an incredible daughter and I wouldn’t say “my” accomplishment because I think it’s mainly her accomplishment, and the accomplishment of so many people who are involved in her childhood… so I can’t take full credit, god knows, but my greatest sense of achievement anyway is that I can say that I have a child who is as wonderful as she is.
Donna: That’s beautiful. Finally, what would you say to the 20-year-old version of yourself if you could give her advice?
Marianne: I would tell myself to relax. I would tell myself life’s gonna happen. I would tell myself to enjoy myself… that I can’t possibly know yet how glorious it is to be 20. Enjoy the fact that you are there…there are a lot of responsibilities you’re going to have later in your life. You don’t have them now. You have the time to learn, to grow, to love. The glories of the body, the doors of the soul, just enjoy this time. Enjoy. Life will get hard. The 20s have their challenges. Definitely. Yeah, but I would tell myself not to miss out on the experience of being young, because it won’t last forever.
Donna: In thinking back to my own 20s, I feel like at that time we’re so busy trying to make ourselves. You know, we’re pushing and we’re trying to build our career or whatever it is we’re doing, that we don’t stop and enjoy the ride.
Marianne: And don’t you feel that you would say to your 20 year old self, “Just relax?”
Donna: Absolutely. Absolutely. It takes so long to learn that basic lesson of being present. In these last few minutes, Marianne, is there anything else you’d like to share with us with regard to what you’re up to now? And what are your plans?
Marianne: People can certainly go to marianne.com and see the various things I have… the work on the Course in Miracles, the work on… not just for others, but for myself, as well. Developing a deeper and deeper understanding of the Course in Miracles, whether it has to do with my coaching course, Developing Your Wings, or Mornings with Marianne, where I have actually read all 365 lessons of the Course in Miracles and then I talk about them a little bit, so that people can have them come into their inboxes in the morning.
I was at a I was at a party recently and I was surprised actually at some of the people who came up to me because it wasn’t a “spiritual crowd.” But it was, you know, all the people came up and said “I’m with you every morning.” Yeah, oh wow. Really? You? It’s interesting to me, but I also have a substack… Mariannewilliamson.substack.com where every morning there’s meditation, but also, I write articles. I wrote an article about forgiveness being so important to the salvation of the world, last week… The week before that, I wrote about fossil fuel extraction. So saying “no” to fossil fuels, and yes, it’s alive.
So with me, you know, on any given day… it’s so funny… I remember when someone said to me… I was going to a dinner party and somebody said “we’re not going to talk about religion or politics.” Let’s do that. So leaves me out at dinner. And you never know with me, what topic I might be going on about in a given moment because to me, you know, I grew up at a time where we would like… I remember when I was in college, you would read, you know, Alan Watts and Ram Dass in the morning. Yeah. And then you would go to a Vietnam anti war protest in the afternoon.
There wasn’t the sense of distinction and artificial categories. It was a more holistic time, wasn’t it? It was a sense of spiritual, cultural, sexual, musical, political revolution… and evolved all that we are and I think we should retrieve that…
Donna: I feel like, to a certain extent, we’ve become almost apathetic as a people. In the late 60s there was that energy. You know, we wanted to really change the world and we thought we could. Of course, I was, you know, I was very young at that time, but somehow I imbibed the spirit of it. You know, coming from the parents I came from, do you feel that that spirit has been lost?
Marianne: People say that the problem is that people are apathetic. I don’t think people are apathetic. I think people are scared. What a lot of people see is apathy. I don’t see it as apathy. I think people are scared. I think people are flummoxed and don’t really even want to think right now. And it almost makes people paralyzed. Because remember back in those days, we thought we could change the world.
Today, there’s a sense that love has been checkmated. Everywhere we look, there’s such a resistance to justice. There’s such a resistance to mercy. There’s such a resistance to democracy. There’s such a resistance to people just living together in harmony and peace.
So I think people are just kind of like, what, what are we going to do? Now, for those of us with a spiritual perspective, we’re going to have a miracle because we’re going to love one another and then it’s going to change as people… and that is going to literally create synapses that are not available to us right now. And insights and possibilities… a reorganization of molecules and people in relationship vectors. That, right now, we don’t see on the landscape because we haven’t yet become the people out of which they will emerge.
Donna: That’s beautiful, and a return to love indeed.
Marianne: So, we need a season of repair. We need a season of regeneration. We need a national reset, we need a species reset. We’re like on the Titanic headed for the iceberg. That iceberg. Could be a weather catastrophe, it could be nuclear, it could be biochemical, we have got to recognize that each and every one of us are the captains of the ship that need to take hold of the wheel and turn this thing around. Its collective. It’s not one person or 100 people… It’s is all of us.
And that’s the awakening. And that’s what happened in the outfield… Titanic, you know, the captain knew that they shouldn’t go that far north. He knew that they shouldn’t go that fast. And when people on ship shouted to him from down below… and they went to sleep. And by the time the captain, Captain wake up!… It was too late.
And that’s what’s happening right now. Wake up. And then everybody says “What am I supposed to do?” And that is where that small still voice for God comes in. God’s not going to tell me what you’re supposed to do. Gods aren’t going to tell you what you’re supposed to do. Each of us has within ourselves that guidance system. You can see the guidance system in secular terms, in terms of intuition. You can see it in terms of religious or spiritual terms… guidance of the Holy Spirit.
Donna: And find our in our own way to affect change…
Marianne: That’s why… because each and every cell is assigned, you know, and every cell in the body is assigned to where it can be of most use. And now as I said, we’re all immune cells. And it starts with our own lives, you know… who have you not forgiven? Who are you not treating with as much kindness as what you would like?
Donna: Forgiveness is the greatest healing tool, isn’t it?
Marianne: Well, the Course says it’s everything, because forgiveness is our willingness to extend our perception beyond what the physical senses perceive to what the heart knows to be true.
Donna: That’s beautiful.
Marianne: Yeah, back to Hawaiian spirituality. I love you. Thank you. Forgive me. I’m sorry. That’s the work…
Donna: We get blocked indeed. Is that the ego blocking us?
Marianne: The ego is the belief that I’m separate from you. So the ego produces thoughts that convinces me I’m separate from you, it will be either I’m better than you or I’m worse than you. It will be anything that makes me think we’re not one.
So anything you do that can make me focus on your mistakes and your guilt, or my mistakes and my guilt is a way that the ego perpetuates itself. And if we say, well, I want to drop all that and just love other people. The ego will say no, no, it’s dangerous. You can’t do that. Because to do that, you’ll die basically. But that’s because the ego will die.
So the ego is trying to perpetuate its own life… its own self-preservation. The Course of Miracles says “you think without the ego, all would be chaos, but I assure you without the ego, all would be love.” Now, that doesn’t mean we never say “no.”
Donna: That deserves to be highlighted. Without the ego, all will be love. And that’s where forgiveness is a kind of cleanser in a way, a purifier…
Marianne: That’s exactly what it is. The course in miracles says “miracles are everyone’s right.” But self purification is necessary first. And also Gandhi said that self purification must precede direct political action. And that’s what you and I have been talking about. Start to address who we are, as much as what it is that we do. Put the two together and go marching.
Donna: But it’s angry people out there marching…
Marianne: I was an angry peacenik. I think I wrote about that in A Return to Love.
Donna: I think so. I love your work and I’m grateful for you. And I’m grateful for the work that you do for the world, for yourself, and by extension for the world. Thank you for spending this time with us today, Marianne.
Marianne: Oh, thank you. I’m grateful. I’m honored and I wish you the very best.
Donna: Thank you.
Read and Watch Part 1 Here: Awaken Interviews Marianne Williamson Pt 1- Love Is Our Ultimate Identity and Our Purpose On This Planet