As a child I was brought up in the Anglican religion. My mother was quite ‘religious’ – she prayed a lot and went to church whenever she could. We lived in the country and it was not easy for her to get to church. I was sent to an Anglican Girls Grammar School but the religion taught there was so ‘dead’: it was simply a set of rules of things one should not do, some moral values which were worth living by, but that was all.
Although I believed that Jesus had told his disciples to be loving there did not seem to be love anywhere, just fear that one would not be ‘good’ enough. Church services were something we had to attend and I cannot remember one ‘sermon’ inspiring me in any way. I do remember the gossip after the service, which was all about what ‘Mrs So-and-So’ was wearing, or some scandal or other; I could feel this was all very unloving.
I continued to attend church irregularly once I left school and also got married in one. In Montreal, Canada in 1955 there were no civil marriages and one could only be married in a church! I had my children baptised but left their confirmation up to them and did not send them to schools that taught religion. As you can see I did not have any bad experiences but I didn’t have any inspiring ones either.
I lived my life as best I could with integrity and truth, but there was always a feeling of lack there. I believed that I did not truly know what love was and how to be truly loving towards others; I looked for answers in many places along the way – the ‘New Age’ seemed to hold some interesting ones – but when explored further seemed as empty as religion had been.
It was not until I was in my sixties when I began to listen to Serge Benhayon and go to the presentations he gave through Universal Medicine that I began to realise there was another way to live one’s life. This was called The Way of The Livingness, and I realised it had the answers to so many of the questions I had been asking myself for many years. Here was a way to live that was truly loving, a way to learn to love oneself, to nurture oneself and from there to love and nurture others.
If religion is a way of life then my religion is The Way of The Livingness. This is not a set of rules one should live by or a list of things one should not do – it is a way of evolving back to where we came from. It is a way of living that is full of love – towards ourselves, our bodies and towards others. It is a way of returning to the love and joy we felt as children before we became overwhelmed by life.
This does require us to be absolutely honest with ourselves and at first this can be confronting. However, once we look at our perceived ‘faults’ or ‘failings’ we see them as being nothing other than our own creations from which we can choose to rid ourselves very easily, or not… it is always our choice. Our lives are made up of our choices along the way as are the lives of others, and thus we can never judge or feel different from another as we are all travelling along the same road, making our choices every day.
I simply choose to have joy and love as my way of being which for me is now living a truly religious life, The Way of The Livingness.
By Rowena Parkes, Age 84
The Outlier – Thanks to The Way of The Livingness
Organised Religion versus True Religion
Living Religion: A Relationship With Self-love, And God
383 thoughts on “Living a Religious Life & The Way of The Livingness”
Having Joy in our lives as being in True-Joy is a precursor to having appreciation, deepens our relationship with everyone as appreciation twin sister is True-Intimacy (letting people in)
“It is a way of living that is full of love – towards ourselves, our bodies and towards others.” What a gorgeous line, and that is how simple it is, and it’s what the world is lacking to bring us all back to health, vitality, rich relationships, and a relationship with ourselves that is based on how precious we are and our sacredness as divine beings.
The way we have been brought up around religion, or what we have seen, read and heard can influence the way we feel the words ‘Religion’ and ‘God’ in our bodies. So many pictures get thrown up of manipulation, greed, corruption, hurt and abuse there can be a physical reaction to them which means we reject the whole concept. It is time to re-develop a relationship that is based on what comes from inside, not outside.
The Way of The Livingness is the only religion that makes any sense to me in this world of multi-religious views.
I agree Julie, The way of The Livingness is the only religion that makes sense to me.
When we are absolutely honest it opens us to the truth and potential of what is before us.
I loved your sharing, there is much to ponder on this. The way you were brought up and you realised things weren’t ‘right’ for you. What was even more fascinating, is that when you re-discovered your religion, ‘The Way of The Livingness,’ you did it without a fuss, no condemning of another, just as it is and was, and this responsibility lies within every one of us to not judge one another for choosing another way to live.
Yes, because we truly have enough judgement in the world, it is high time we took a deep hard look at why we judge another and take a step back from adding to that melting pot of opinions.
I agree – being absolutely honest with oneself can be very confronting, but that is the permission we have been robbed of and longing for, I feel. In my dishonesty, I have put up a veneer of good and righteousness, over and above the seething fury and despair, not realizing the true beauty and glory that I actually was to begin with all along. Truth of us is quite simple.
We have allowed the word religion to be associated with so many rules and behaviours that we have lost that the true religious way is very simple. Like Rowena describes: “I simply choose to have joy and love as my way of being which for me is now living a truly religious life, The Way of The Livingness.”.
The Way of The Livingness is a beautiful way to live, ‘a way to live that was truly loving, a way to learn to love oneself, to nurture oneself and from there to love and nurture others.’
To live from the connection to the essence within and choose to walk this love through life is a religion I can truly relate to, the Way of the Livingness.
I love the simple wisdom you share Rowena that we choose that which we experience in life. “However, once we look at our perceived ‘faults’ or ‘failings’ we see them as being nothing other than our own creations from which we can choose to rid ourselves very easily, or not… it is always our choice.”
“(…) and thus we can never judge or feel different from another as we are all travelling along the same road, making our choices every day.” I love this, the only thing that differentiates us all is our choices. Knowing this brings the opportunity for understanding each other instead of judging and thinking others are crazy, weird or totally lost or too good, amazing and better. Whatever the case, if we observe people’s choices we can know why they are at where they are at.
I love this blog – so real and honest and at the same time humerous.
Just recently I attended a multicultural women’s group, and even though the theme was that it didn’t matter which country, or religion the women were from, I observed that they didn’t know how to be away from what they had grown up around – there was an identity to it. Underneath this religion they were beautiful women, and the elderly women were joyous to be around; they were mixing with all kind.
Our afternoon ended with the priest of this particular religion explaining their worshipping area, what each area represented. I couldn’t understand the purpose of the glass barriers as they were the division of where men and women sat…
When I attend any of The Way of The Livingness presentations, everyone sits wherever they feel to. There is no division – everyone is an equal despite the hurts, beliefs and colour. Simply love it.
From Growing up being wary of religion, to coming to understand true religion to now embracing life and holding being religious as a dear quality is a total change around that I’ve also felt after being part of the way of the livingness.
‘Here was a way to live that was truly loving, a way to learn to love oneself, to nurture oneself and from there to love and nurture others’ this is a biggie for me. I was bought up to love and nurture others before oneself and that is and was draining. I am working on this and there is nothing selfish about this at all and if anything, I can offer more of myself to people than before.
A very joyful act is to live by The Way of The Livingness.
Joyful, and loving, ‘It is a way of living that is full of love – towards ourselves, our bodies and towards others. It is a way of returning to the love and joy we felt as children before we became overwhelmed by life.’
The Way of the Livingness is also, as I came to realize, a religious way: I can now fully say that I embrace this religious way, which also means I embrace myself as being religious. .
The Way of the Livingness is simple and all encompassing, live the Livingness and see for yourself the magic and joy that this brings to your life and relationships.
We are encouraged throughout life to live from the outside in. When we connect to the inner heart, to the inside, and start living from there we continue to ignite further and build from the inside, living more and more the love and joy that is found there. The Way of the Livingness is a way of vitality.
I had never found inspiration either in religion nor the New Age because invariably no matter what I learnt I still came back to the same way of life. The values I did have that I felt gave my life meaning came from inside of me, they were innate such as kindness and being loving with others, but until I found Serge Benhayon I hadn’t been able to live nor understand the full breadth of love. The Way of the Livingness is such a simple religion, it comes from within us and is the way of the life of the soul on earth.
The Way of the Livingness is a simple religion, it comes from within us.
Thank you Rowena, a gorgeous and simple message of what religion is and what the false interperations and basterdisations we have introduced instead. Great to hear people step it up and stand for what is religion – so nessesarily.
There is a whole infrastructure of social institutions that prepares us to cruise in life which guarantees will will keep rowing, not falling into the water but going nowhere.
It’s the one oar situation, and not the awe of God 🙂
It is simple Rowena, we have a choice to live with joy in our body or not.
“However, once we look at our perceived ‘faults’ or ‘failings’ we see them as being nothing other than our own creations from which we can choose to rid ourselves very easily, or not…” – So true Rowena, and when it comes right down to it, all those issues and ‘faults’ that we may have are but a super thin layer that is hiding the immensity of love, wisdom, joy, harmony, and stillness that resides inside of us, in the same way that the crust of the Earth is but a thin layer over its mantle and core.
Michael I was saying this exact thing today to someone, our problems (so to speak) are such a small surface area and underneath, and often unaware to ourselves, is the immensity of our soul.
Now that is a religion I subscribe to. One that comes from the love of a lived way, connected to the love we are from. Not so much about words as about movements.
‘Our lives are made up of our choices along the way as are the lives of others, and thus we can never judge or feel different from another as we are all travelling along the same road, making our choices every day.’
To me an absolute confirmation of the love God holds us in: he never tells us what to do, never judges us, but always welcomes us back when we choose so.
How is it that that childhood experience of religion can so often be described as ‘dead’? That was equally my experience and then once I was a teenager I realised I would have to start my own journey to find something that felt alive, current, lived. That is what you get with the Way of the Livingness…