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Andrew Cohen in the UK

Last week, EnlightenNext’s founder and editor in chief, Andrew Cohen, traveled to Europe for a whirlwind tour of talks and dialogues about his teachings of Evolutionary Enlightenment. Speaking in London, Edinburgh, Stockholm, and Copenhagen, Andrew concluded his trip in Paris, where he spoke at the inauguration of the new center for EnlightenNext France (the event was webstreamed, with listeners tuning in from around the globe). Two members of EnlightenNext, Carol Ann Raphael and Dave Pendle, have written brief reports about Andrew’s talk in London and the public dialogue he had in Edinburgh with Bishop Brian Smith, which they’ve posted on the EnlightenNext UK Blog. Here are some excerpts.

Carol writes:

Andrew Cohen had been invited by Alternatives—a very popular London-based convener of lectures and programs of interest to seekers of all persuasions—to give a one-day seminar on his teachings [and] started off with a provocative query: Is being English a help or a hindrance to the evolution of consciousness? … But rather than delve into the landscape of British conditioning, he carefully laid out the very large context in which we would be exploring the implications of humanity’s fairly recent discovery of evolution and how evolution thoroughly and profoundly transforms our understanding of the meaning and purpose of life.

Sweeping through the vast expanses of Cosmic time, Andrew described a process that has been unfolding for far longer than our human minds can fathom. Doing so, he took us deeper and deeper into the infinities of space, time, and consciousness; indeed, into the very ‘mind’ of God, to that mysterious point where something came from nothing…. » Read the complete entry

And of Andrew’s dialogue with the Bishop of Edinburgh, Dave says:

Responding to Andrew’s inspired utopian passion and conviction in the positivity of evolutionary development, the Bishop put forward the well-known notion that most traditional religions saw suffering as an intrinsic part of spiritual life and wondered how this fitted in to the perspective that Andrew was propounding.

Andrew replied by pointing out that the force that initiated evolution from utter emptiness in the beginning was, in fact, a gigantic violent explosion. In describing the process within which galaxies collided and stars continue to collapse, Andrew made it clear that a quality of ferocity permeates every aspect of the evolutionary process. Evolution proceeds through stress and friction and is inherently imperfect; human suffering is therefore inevitable as we clamber along the path of evolutionary progress. Nevertheless, in Andrew’s view, the underlying dynamics of evolution are fundamentally positive and whole. » Read the complete entry

Andrew’s next public talk will be on Nov. 3rd for members of the all-new Evolutionary Enlightenment Practitioner Program, followed by a global virtual seminar exclusively for women, called “Women Forging the Future,” that he’ll be leading on the weekend of Nov. 13-14. For more info about Andrew’s upcoming events, including dialogues in New York City with Lama Surya Das and Deepak Chopra, click here.

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Filed Under: Cultural EvolutionCultureEnlightenNext Editors’ BlogEvolutionary EnlightenmentEvolutionary SpiritualitySpirituality

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About the Author

Tom Huston is the Senior Online Editor of EnlightenNext magazine. Follow him on Twitter @KosmicTom.

Comments (21)

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  1. Aliya says:

    “Andrew replied by pointing out that the force that initiated evolution from utter emptiness in the beginning was, in fact, a gigantic violent explosion.”
    I wonder how one can be so sure about a “violent” explosion in “the beginning”. There are many theories nowadays which reject the big bang hypothesis. In addition, what beginning are we talking about? What a beginning or an end can God, the Absolute, the Ultimate ever have? And if it has a beginning and an end, then whatsoever Andrew talks about is something limited, knowable, it cannot be God. God is Infinite and Eternal. No beginning, no end, just the Ultimate Reality. What Andrew talks about can only be a human mind projection over Existence.
    Then my next question is: “Is really a person who sees God, Existence as “Violent and ferocity permeated” God trusting, Existence trusting??? Will “unconditional love” be ever understood and made part of your being if you keep projecting your own personal fears and lack of love over Existence, over the Creator, who created the world out of His endless love and grace?

    • Nada says:

      Aliya, Why don’t you substantiate your claim and offer up to us an “alternative theory” to the “big bang hypothesis” so that your argument would sound more plausible and we could weigh in on your statement?

      It’s important to remember that the “Absolute” or Unmanifest, Unborn, Uncreate, Causal Ground of All Being was just that when something came from nothing, and will be just that, no matter what goes on in the manifest world; Just So It IS, no need to worry about “Andrew’s human mind projection.”

      That Unborn, Causal Ground is what Ramana Maharishi called “the God beyond God,” meaning yes! there is a God that “came from” and “Began.” The Active Principles or Creator God/dess, Eros and Agape, Wisdom and Compassion,Shiva and Shakti, Transcendence and Immanence,Emptiness and Form etc…But these Two in Their *most subtle aspects* are barely perceptible as anything but the Causal Ground, and! These are the Highest Archetypal Diety Forms available to us as active principles of our very own being, pushing and pulling on us to transcend and embrace/include their energies of evolution and move from exclusive identification with the body/mind/ego to the Soul to Union with God/dess to the Unmanifest Causal to Nondual Enlightenment. And of course, ALL OF THIS IS NOT-TWO!

      And yes, Eros can be quite ferocious, and Agape can be quite fierce…it depends on what your capacity for Their energies is, and how willing you are to develop to greet Them in your own awareness and Become Transformed to Their Purpose. They seek expression through us, as us, individual and unique vehicles of Spirit’s realizing itself as Spirit. No end point, just Becoming for all time…

      But you are a “mystic,” so you “knew” all of that already…(;}

      In Humble Service of the Self

      • Aliya says:

        “God cannot be an object that appears and disappears,” – Sri Ramana Maharishi.

        • Nada says:

          God is the Emptiness of ALL Forms simultaneously…

          There is no one here “ranting,” or “waisting precious energy,” Aliya…

          Only your Self talking to yourself

          • Aliya says:

            “Only your Self talking to yourself” – Nada, why then you waste so much time in answering me, attacking me, analyzing me?:)
            There must be something in my words which stirrs your mind patterns to explode in blind anger and disapproval. You can make a good meditation for yourself out of this observation.
            As for your attempt of defining God so assertively in a duality statement Emptinness against Forms – be aware! God is not that:) Your heart knows better than your mind and its pathetic attempts to define God as an object. Move within your heart – there the Golden Gate to the Kingdom of God, to Non duality is.

            • Nada says:

              Aliya, That you believe YOU have the power to stir anyone is pure illusion. Every person, conscious and unconscious, chooses their response. What you need to ask yourself, is Why? do YOU take a false position of power to attempt inspiring any response?

              You once said something like this somewhere else on this blog:

              “When you come upon a human, bow to him, you are greeting God”

              Did you mean it, Aliya? Or was it just nice words to serve your point?

              Because if you meant it, then you yourself were saying that God(Emptiness) is present in the human(Form)

              The face of that person is the Original Face, Form and Emptiness are NOT-TWO…THAT IS NONDUALITY!

              Spirit is the Ground of all Form. It is an impossibility to separate the Ground, its Causal Arising, out of an Object. There is no independent arising, All is the Ground – Spirit

              It is no effort for me to respond to you
              I am completely unattached and only care deeply to awaken you from your contradictory conclusions

              Unlike some on this sight, who have no hope for that, I have complete confidence,becuase I know God is listening in the form of Aliya

              In Humble Service of The One Self

              • Aliya says:

                “I am completely unattached and only care deeply to awaken you from your contradictory conclusions”
                - Dear Nada, you can only “care” about the others when you come to know who the carer is, in fact who you are. As you are at the moment, you do not know who you are, you have not connected yourself to your innermost being, to your inner reality. Hence, all attempts to “”care”" about the others is pure projection of your ego on them and this phenomenon has its psychological name – “inferiority complex” or in other words: – A persistent sense of inadequacy or a tendency to self-diminishment, sometimes resulting in excessive aggressiveness through overcompensation.

                “Unlike some on this sight, who have no hope for that” – Who do you think you are, Nada, to judge people and declare them hopeless?! Have you yourself ever created an alive human being to dare to judge him/her and reject him/her? Only our Creator can judge, no one else.

                • Nada says:

                  Sorry if I offended, Aliya, but it seems to me that Spirit asks us to care very much about creating awareness among ourselves as beings that *can be aware*, since we are Spirit realizing Itself as Spirit.

                  How can I or you or anyone be uninvolved and uncaring in a process that is always and only the Ultimate Care of Sprit?


                  • Aliya says:

                    The only thing the Spirit cares is You. So instead of just constantly projecting yourself over the others, why don’t you look directly at the Spirit within your innermost center of being? Only then will you know what the Spirit really “wants” (however, beaware of not projecting your own “wants”, “musts” and “shoulds” on Spirit, on God Himself!).

      • Frank Luke says:

        The term “coming from nothing” is commonly used but I’m thinking it’s misleading.

        I use the model of germs gestating and developing and in optimal conditions an organism is created. I believe that humanity and all that habits the earth have followed that model and continue on as more optimal evolution occurs and will occur.

        Is Ken Wilber correct that the omega point of human evolution is enlightenment? Will that be just psychological or will it mean a physical transformation?

        What will that look like?

        • Aliya says:

          Dear Frank,

          Why don’t you first enlighten and then see if you will remain ” a germ gestating and developing” or you become a golden papillon?

          • Frank Luke says:

            Though you seem to make light of the concept it seems to point to your not being up to speed as far as contemporary thought.

            I consider with scientists that all Creation is a culture like bacterium developing in a giant Petri dish of our omni-atmosphere.

            Is this beyond your acceptance or comprehension?

            • Aliya says:

              It is your choice, dear Frank. If you want to identify yourself with a “culture like bacterium developing in a giant Petri dish”, you are free to do so. Still it will remain another identification of your mind. And remember that all misery is a product of our own identifications.
              Otherwise, you are eternal, infinite, indestructible, formless (beyond forms/space and time). But to know this you can not through mind theories, ideologies and concepts. To know this you can only through meditation and experiencing it.

        • Nada says:

          Hi Frank, The Causal Ground does create an Omega “pull” through the stages of development, but as Ramana(and KW) makes clear, actual development *through* the Causal Ground (Enlightenment) is “The Omega Point” of all Omega points(stable stages). But here’s what many don’t know; The Nondually Realized individual doesn’t stop…there’s no such thing as “full Enlightenment.” Development continues because the Forms of Spirit are forever evolving, changing, becoming! The Nondually Realized person is poised at the Edge of Evolution, because they have realized Spirit as That Which Is Ground (Emptiness) and All Forms of Evolution – Nonduality!

          And according to Ken Wilber, if a person just denies the fact that we came through stages of evolution to this point, and that we are continuing to evolve, and that evolutionary unfolding is nothing other than Spirit’s unfolding, well,”they are just plain ignorant.”

          That was a great question! Thanks!
          LOL (;}

          • Aliya says:

            “The plain ignorant” is the one who identifies himself with the matter, the form and cannot transcend the spatiotime.

            • Nada says:

              Dear Aliya, That is a keen perception of the obvious…

              “Matter” is the most dense form of consciousness, but still a level of consciousness

              As the Pure Light of Consciousness(Spirit) differentiates “down” and into the various levels of manifestation,from Soul to Mind to Body to Matter, it becomes more dense. Exclusive identification with Body/Mind is less dense than Matter, but more dense than Soul. But, I don’t know anybody who exclusively “identifies with the matter.” Perhaps a psychotic lapidary?


              • Aliya says:

                Dear Nada,

                What evolves is the Creation, not the Creator. The Creator is the Center, the Creation is the surface which is also called Samsara in Eastern understanding.
                What you and people like Ken Wilber miss to understand is that Existence is like a wheel with spokes and even though spokes are many it is the hub in the middle, it is their center which makes the wheel function. And this hub is what is, it does not evolve.

                • Nada says:

                  Your assumptions prevail, as usual, Aliya.

                  • Aliya says:

                    “Thirty spokes join one hub.

                    The wheel’s use comes from the hub’s emptiness.

                    Clay is fired to make a pot.

                    The pot’s use comes from emptiness.

                    Windows and doors are cut to make a room.

                    The room’s use comes from emptiness.” Lao Tsu

  2. Frank Luke says:

    Hi Nada!

    I’m so gratified to read your acknowledgements voiced in your last comment. I sometimes feel I’m speaking to the wind with some of the noncomprehension or not getting the views I’ve been posting re: Authentic Self, ego morphing to a Transcendent Ego, and spirituality being personal as well as planetary.

    You’re right to state there is no full Enlightenment, that is until life is over and others can assess the complete trajectory of a life.

    Best wishes for your happy holiday season!

    Aloha, namaste!

    • Nada says:

      Hi Frank, I’m happy to acknowledge your thoughts. They are not displaced the way some would have you believe. Your translation of your perceptions are yours; it’s up to you to differentiate those perceptions for your own evolution. As we grow and become, and because we are conscious beings navigating our own complexity within contexts (within contexts forever),we MUST make meaning and purpose of our existence,hopefully in ever-increasing clarity, or allow our identifications to become cemented as our true reality…that is the definition of Hell.

      Every moment we are translating our reality as we navigate the world. Every time we think,speak,write and share it is a translation of our own making within the contexts of our existence.If you are a sensitive person, someone perhaps hyper-aware of your environment, like I have been and still am,it is easy to agree with the “petri dish” concept.If you can feel yourself as not-other than the ant gathering food for the Queen,not-other than the storm brewing on the horizon,and if you care about humanity,and I know you do, you contemplate the rise of killing diseases and pay attention to those that are purifying uranium for evil deeds. Our awareness demands that we pay attention to the biological stresses that we are excedingly creating and enduring.And if you’re the type that doesn’t pay attention,then you are selfishly contracted and caring only for your self-preservation and immediate needs.

      So as I said on the other post(“Highest Form of..”),”Transcended Ego” is a valid use of language, because it does represent a subtle change, a more evolved and embracing change, and I’d rather be in a world full of that type of person than not.

      Your experience is your own,Frank,and I can only honor your translation.Happy Holiday!LOL