The Way of the Livingness – the Religion I’ve Always Known

By Shannon Everest

RELIGION AT SCHOOL

For all of my schooling life I attended a Catholic school. It was the same school that my mum went to and also the same school that her mother attended.

Religion was a subject taught in different ways over the years as I made my way from Infant School to Primary, and then to High School. It was a compulsory part of the curriculum, the same as Maths, English and Science. We also attended a mass in church once a week, and when we had events like assemblies or graduations, we would do this in the church. We also celebrated all of the normal religious events in church, like Easter and Christmas. 

GOING TO CHURCH

Sitting in the church was never a pleasant experience for me. It felt like time stood still and all I could think about was how long it would be before we could leave. It felt dark and cold in there and devoid of the natural lightness of being and joy I otherwise felt. I would sit and yawn over and over again, and I would look for opportunities to find relief by asking the teacher to go to the toilet as often as was feasible.

Why was it such an uncomfortable and unpleasant experience? Why did I dread going to church so much?

The most interesting part was getting up to receive the communion – a symbolic piece of wafer – only because you got to get up and move your body around and meet eyes with other kids… have a chat and some giggles. Like all children, I loved to sing but the hymns felt tiring, heavy and burdensome.

In High School, we had the opportunity to study all religions – Judaism, Protestantism, Ba’hai, Buddhism, Hinduism and so on. I approached it with eagerness – here was my opportunity to look further afield to find truth and something that resonated with me – but still I found nothing in my studies that made sense.

After leaving school I moved on in my life, with no real focus on religion. It wasn’t until my sister’s Year 12 Graduation 4 years later that I walked back into a church. I was shocked and gobsmacked to sit in the church for this ceremony; to now become aware, as an adult, of what I had learned to tolerate over all those years. In returning, I could now feel the cursing and imprisonment I was under as a student in a Catholic School. My rejection of religion grew stronger.

REJECTING RELIGION

All that I took in over those years left me feeling like I didn’t want to know about God or Jesus. What I had heard didn’t all add up and make sense with what I felt in my body and in my heart. So the easiest solution at the time was to reject it all.

I would question myself too – who was I to question all of this history and ceremony? I was just a child…

After spending all of those years in Catholic School and going to Church, I had come to reject religion and its concepts of God because:

  • The way God was presented felt harsh and very separate to me.
  • I was told that God was judgmental, and that you would go to heaven if you were good, or go to hell if you were bad. It gave a sense that God was someone to be feared. But how could a True and Heavenly Father be judgmental? – This didn’t make sense.
  • I was told that Jesus was God’s only Son… and that Jesus died for our sins. This felt very intense and dark to me as a child, and left me with scarring that needed to be healed. If Jesus was God’s only son, that would mean that there was only one in the whole world who was special and worthy of God’s love, rather than ALL of us.
  • I was taught that Jesus was a martyr: that he died for the sins of humanity. This is symbolism for someone who takes on other people’s issues. It glorifies the taking on, absorbing of and feeling responsible for the choices of another. As a person who has spent a lifetime taking on other people’s issues, I know the end result and devastation that results from this in my own body, so this can’t be a true way of being. I have learnt through trusting myself and feeling what is true based on the body I inhabit that the best thing for all is to not take on the issues of others, or try to fix anything with band-aid solutions, but call others to take full responsibility for themselves.
  • The reason for Jesus being put to death, I was told, was to clear humanity’s sins or wrongdoings, but his death didn’t really change any of that… it all still continues. What I can feel now is that he was a speaker of truth and I have experienced that when I speak the full and whole truth, I can get persecuted for it. This feels more in line with why he died. Through time, there have always been those that fear the truth being exposed and therefore seek to silence that truth being delivered.
  • I was presented a way of ritual, ceremony and devotion that wasn’t in line with the natural way I felt to celebrate. The true essence of celebrating always felt to me to be from a lightness of being – but my being never did feel ‘light’ in church. The light felt crushed.
  • I had rejected many ‘religious’ words such as holy and glory because the way these words were used didn’t translate to the meanings I knew deep within me.

There was always something very wrong with my religious education; it conflicted with what I felt from within. My body would say “no, that just doesn’t sit well with what I feel”. My mind would say “but you must be wrong because this religion has been building its momentum for a couple of thousand years – with so many followers and so much history behind it”.

When I came across a religion called The Way of The Livingness, there was a sad realisation that I had rejected religion and my connection to God because of all that had been imposed on me that didn’t feel true. When I had rejected that version of Religion and God, I had also rejected the possibility of it being a living truth – and in doing so, I had rejected a part of myself.

THE WAY OF THE LIVINGNESS – RETURNING TO WHOLENESS

At presentations of The Way of the Livingness I have been able to re-claim back all that I know in my heart and soul to be true – because finally I am hearing the words that make sense. But not just that, the words are spoken in the quality that goes hand in hand with the sacredness and essence of Religion – a returning to the Glory we come from.

I no longer feel fragmented – like religion and God are separate to me: now we are one and the same.

The Way of the Livingness – the very name captures the truth for me, because it is about living the love in our hearts.

It represents the living truth that is now active again in me – that we all have within us the same and equal opportunity to live in the Glory of Love. There is not a chosen one or few, but there is a spark waiting to be re-ignited in each of us.

Those days in church always felt like I was hearing empty words. Yet in the presentations on The Way of the Livingness I can feel the energy of equal-ness, brotherhood, love and divinity – as the words are being spoken and in the very room where I am sitting. I can feel it in me, in the presenters, in everyone in the room, and in those outside the building too – it is Unifying.

In these presentations, I don’t find myself yawning, or bored or watching the clock, waiting for it to be over. I don’t feel like I am being cursed for being who I am, or imprisoned by being there. I can laugh out loud and have tears of joy in my eyes. I feel free to express the truth and the love in my body, heart and soul as an equal Son of God.

These feelings are not ones that remain in a building and that I can’t take out into my life and apply practically to all I do. I have come to feel a Holy Reverence at work and at home, washing my car, or shopping at the supermarket, talking to my children’s school teachers and paying my bills: and the feelings don’t stay the same, they keep increasing, strengthening and building over time.

So I have finally found the truth I knew was possible in my heart as a child in The Way of the Livingness, because it confirms what I always knew – that the Kingdom of God is inside me. Living this fact in a world that has accepted far less is not always easy, but it is a truth that lives within and I will now never forget.

401 thoughts on “The Way of the Livingness – the Religion I’ve Always Known

  1. ‘At presentations of The Way of the Livingness I have been able to re-claim back all that I know in my heart and soul to be true – because finally I am hearing the words that make sense.‘ There is such simplicity in those moments when words match what we feel deep inside; when teachings make sense of all our questions. The Way of the Livingness is the only religion I have experienced that is absolutely inclusive and holds us all as equal.

  2. Sitting through church sermons was always boring to me as a kid; everything was dreary and the smell of the old buildings used to put me off. It was more like being punished than being loved, and I now know that thanks to Serge Benhayon the religion we are brought up with is a second-hand copy of the real thing.

  3. When we are totally confused by all the blare that goes on in so called traditional religions and start to feel our return to our essences, then our life comes to an understanding of our True divinity and how the Love that all the masters have shared is simply in us all equally, so it is up to us all to re-connect to our own Love by being at-least gentle first.

  4. The Roman Catholic Church is being totally exposed in so many different countries for child sexual abuse. And yet it remains so incredibly powerful and arrogant in that it feels it is above the common law in that the priests in question are not called to account. If the person in the street so to say, was caught behaving in such a way they would be put into prison, so how come we have a law for the ‘commoner’ and a different law for the Roman Catholic church?

  5. As a child I always found church damp and really uncomfortable, I would always feel itchy as if there was something crawling over me, and any time I expected God to be around he never seemed to be there and as a result I turned my back on God, I realise now that God was always there he was just waiting for me to connect to my essence in order to know Him from within.

  6. I also went to a catholic primary school and felt exactly as you describe, I hated going back as an adult and feeling how cold and loveless church was. I too feel sad that I let the ways of evil stop and actively reject my relationship with God. I can see how this plays out currently with associating what people do under the umbrella of the community bastardising the Livingness, this is great way for me to give up and stop being in my power and full relationship with God, any excuse to stop being responsible it seems I will take! Time to grow up energetically would be the next step.

  7. As children we do know what is true or not we feel it in our body and it feels uncomfortable, but instead of holding onto what we feel, we doubt ourselves and question our initial feelings because they are contra to everything we are told especially with regard to religion and religious beliefs.

  8. It is heart-felt to read another write and express about religion that is not true and that is true. It is a returning to who we already are, and this is never talked about in any other religion I have heard about. There are always rules and a doctrine to follow. The Way of The Livingness claims we are already everything inside, so how can there be a doctrine or rules? It also talks about the imposter we have with us and the imposters that abound in this world. No other religion goes into the existence of spirits and the different types. All are explained in the religion of The Way of The Livingness; why there is love and not love.

  9. “The Way of the Livingness – the very name captures the truth for me, because it is about living the love in our hearts.”. I absolutely love what you have said here Shannon, as it is the truth for me also, a truth which made me squirm initially only because I knew I could no longer hide my connection to God through the guise of rejecting any form of religion, as this was the true religion I searched for, for so long.

  10. “I have come to feel a Holy Reverence at work and at home, washing my car, or shopping at the supermarket, talking to my children’s school teachers and paying my bills: and the feelings don’t stay the same, they keep increasing, strengthening and building over time.” Beautiful Shannon. The Way of the Livingness is a very practical religion and can be lived by anyone – we all have the divine living inside us. All we have to do is to reflect that out.

  11. It’s interesting that to friends and family who are church goers I am not considered to be religious – because I don’t go to church. Yet the Way of the Livingness is to me a true religion – not bastardised like so many others – and was founded by the most principled and loving man I have ever met. No hypocrisy here.

    1. Yes it’s interesting how the word religious has become synonymous with going to church and reading the scriptures – far from its original meaning. And is it that there is still a belief that we cannot reach God unless we go to a place of worship? We all really know this is not true.

  12. We are all religious in our own way, we engage in our own rituals and have constant communication with the universe – regardless of whether we’re aware of it or not.

  13. When we live from our innate knowing that we are all loving and equal sons of God, we are naturally living the Way of The Livingness religion.

  14. Through The Way of The Livingness religion I came to the understanding of the true meaning of the fact that the Kingdom of God is within us. Prior to this, these were empty words preached at me from a pulpit when I was growing up. Since I have embraced the fact and know and can feel this spark of Divinity within me, I now live, to the best of my ability, from my loving heart which is a tenet of the religion known as The Way of the Livingness.

  15. Through The Way of The Livingness religion I have come to the understanding of the true meaning of the fact that the Kingdom of God is within us. Prior to this, these were empty words preached at me from a pulpit when I was growing up. Since I have embraced the fact and know and can feel this spark of Divinity within me I now live, to the best of my ability, from my loving heart which to me is the main tenet of The Way of The Livingness religion.

  16. To take on the burdens of another is pure folly and certainly not something that a person with great awareness like the Master Jesus would have have would ever do. Love does not require us to sacrifice ourselves.

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s