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Hey Everyone! Robert here!

I was recently discussing the truth, origins, and real symbolism regarding Light and Darkness in my Facebook forum for Expansion Mastery. It incited a bit of excitement due to the nature of the topic and I was asked to expand upon it, so here it is.

Let’s begin with the Light. Light has come to represent purity, warmth, goodness, and divinity. Yet, most religions have twisted the light’s greatest symbol – fire. Fire was the “original” symbol that represented life, the inner flame or spark when life begins. The Eternal Sacred Flame. The flame is eternal just as we are eternal beings. We see this fiery symbol alive and well in the massive torch held by the Statue of Liberty, the torch that’s carried by exceptional athletes in the beginning of the Olympics, and the ceremonial candles that are lit on most alters. It was the mystic nature of fire that first invoked mankind to look inside themselves which birthed spirituality, and it was fire itself that brought mankind to an entirely new dawn of civilization.

Due to the intimate association of the spark of life and the breath, many esoteric traditions never extinguish the flame with the breath. They use their bare hand to smother the flame out or swipe their hand by it quickly to “blow” it out, or employ a snuffer. They refrain from blowing on it like a child with a birthday cake. The flame is often known to represent wisdom, passion, and life. The original symbolism of a person burning in flames was to show the alchemical process of the purification of mind and spirit. Look at the fire behind many Asian deities or the aura behind various spiritual figureheads to understand this. Today, this consuming fiery aura is commonly viewed as something satanic or evil in the west, or dismissed out rightly as demonic. Yet, the aura is the divine light of the soul and the fiery aura is a symbol of spiritual awakening and soul expansion.

Sun worship is a part of many ancient cultures. The sun is one of the ultimate symbols of light. They worshipped the sun as a way of being allowed the pleasure of experiencing another day to live, and for growing the food to eat, for their own ongoing health, and so on. Yet today, the media has people absolutely paranoid about getting cancer from the sun. People don hats, visors, jackets, and even gloves in the summer as a way to hide form the sun. In reality they are harming themselves far more than protecting themselves, but they have lost their ability to discern truth and they listen to the foolishness the media spreads. Our bodies are meant to be exposed to the sun and recent studies are actually proving that shielding yourself from the sun puts you at greater risk for various types of cancer than lying out in the sun in moderation. Studies are also showing that the cancer hazards of sunscreen are far greater than being exposed to the sun.

The halo, whether vertical or horizontal in its representation, was a type of flame/light indicating that this awakening and purification of the mind had taken place. In the esoteric Buddhist Taizokai mandala, there’s a triangle with a wisdom flame around it in the All-Pervading Wisdom Hall. This is the symbol for Issai Nyorai and the “manji” (the symbol Hitler stole and turned backwards into a swastika) actually symbolizes the power of the awakened universe.

taizo

The flame has been revered in nearly every culture’s spiritual teachings as a holy representation of spirit and life. Esoteric Buddhism contains the ritual of consecrated fire, known as Goma, and is perhaps also the most mystical and cognitively powerful ritual involving fire. The symbolism of fire and light is also associated with the Tengu in Japan. The kanji for Shizen, (commonly translated as Natural), indicates “self-igniting” (one’s self – to burn), which speaks of this process of awakening (enlightenment). The list of ritual uses of fire is an extremely long one. Religion now associates fire with Hell and someone burning in the fires of Hell because they’re a sinner. This is a ridiculous twist of truth. In many religions, fire is viewed as being bad. The fire-like quality of the aura behind a deity is often rationalized by westerners to be some evil demonic hell-fire, when in reality it denotes a high state of awakening. Religion seems to subscribe to the goodness of the light, just their own fictional version of it that’s generally used to hide the truth. This speaks to the danger of holding onto beliefs.

On the other side, we have the Darkness. The Darkness has come to represent fear and evil. It’s that scary thing that light seems to conquer making everything alight. Dark and light are viewed by the ordinary thinking mind to be opposites, but it’s only the egoic mind that perceives in extremes of opposites and superiority. In reality they are not opposing forces, but complimentary. this is the idea of the Tai Chi symbol often called Yin and Yang. Without the darkness we wouldn’t know the light and without the light we have darkness. We learn very early on to be afraid of the dark, right? After all, the dark is where the monsters live and where bad things happen. Supposedly. Some of the greatest atrocities known to man have taken place during the daylight. Do our wars stop during the daylight hours? No. Do children around the world stop starving to death when the sun comes up? No. Does hatred, greed, and senseless violence cease when the sun’s in the sky? No. Without the darkness, there could be no light. They’re merely two sides of the same incredible cosmic coin.

Darkness is the primordial state that exists before creation. The entire universe came from the primordial darkness. It was only from this primordial darkness that the light was known. When we transition back into the non-physical, our pure consciousness enters back into this primordial darkness which is the Universal Source. All of the fanciful after-life stories being sold about the glorious light aren’t real. Those experiencing such a thing are merely in an in-between state of transmission when the mind still clings to the residual beliefs it held when it existed in time and space. These stories and promises about this after-life light are meant to keep you feeling safe and warm and fuzzy, and giving up your money. While the frightened egoic mind desperately wants to believe this story, it still doesn’t make it true. I’ve experienced this twice for myself. Here’s some good news though. This darkness is not cold or empty as one is mistakenly led to believe, no, its warm and enveloping and filled with unlimited potential. Its much like the womb. Your consciousness simply is and that formless state is gloriously freeing.

The fears around the darkness are imagined, they come from the ego. It’s the ego that’s responsible for creating our irrational fears. Of course, Hollywood and Religion have twisted this too, playing on the fears of the dark and flames. In Nagano, Japan there’s an incredible shrine called the Zenkoji. This massive shrine has a space with tunnels underneath one of the main temples where it’s completely dark. The blackness is like nothing you’ve ever experienced – that you remember anyway. It’s said that somewhere in these pitch-black halls, underneath this building, there’s a key. According to legend, anyone who finds this key shall become immediately awakened (enlightened). It’s easy to lose yourself and become fearful and panicked in this place. Yet, the darkness is the point of the experience. It’s a truly awesome experience too – to find your way in the unknown darkness and to become completely at ease with giving up your sense of self.

zenkoji

Likewise, it requires total darkness in particular hours of the night for the brain to release chemicals that allow the brain itself and physical body to rejuvenate. Bright digital clocks, night lights, and street lights lessen or prevent this rejuvenation from taking place. That’s one reason people have such a difficult time waking up filled with energy in the morning and in need of their caffeine fix. It’s natural to wake up feeling regenerated and ready to go. It’s a sign that something’s wrong if you awaken and remain groggy, irritable, or unmotivated until you chemically stimulate yourself.

Darkness has also come to be associated with the “unknown.” The very idea of that which is not known has been twisted into something bad. This too is the egoic mind’s need to believe it understands everything in order to feel in control. The truth is, this extinguishes the child-like wonder that we’re supposed to embrace in life. the unknown is not frightening, it’s filled with unlimited potential and infinite possibilities! When a person awakens and takes the reigns of life, they know how to use this potential to create the life they desire through the mastery of vibration, thought, word, and action, and holding an open heart, while freeing themselves form the mind.

Something I noticed last year was that many movies used “Darkness” in their title. Star Trek: Into Darkness. Thor: The Dark World. It’s interesting because of the emotional response it invokes, which is the primary reason why they use it.

Most religions and governments have twisted the true meaning of true spiritual symbolism, as did Hitler. But to what end? There’s really only one answer – to hide the truth and prevent people from awakening and knowing for themselves. It’s a way to keep the masses dis-empowered. If the masses were to awaken, there would be no need for government or religion. Yet, all this knowledge was meant to be shared with every single person as a way of helping them to remember why they came here and what their life purpose is in regards to the manner in which they desire soul expansion. Reclaim the true meaning of spiritual symbolism and know that it’s knowledge and power is meant to be yours. It serves as a reminder in life of what’s real and what’s illusion. There’s no need for a middle man as you have direct access yourself to this sense of knowing. Simply accept responsibility for yourself and never fear your own empowerment.

Visit me at http://www.expansionmastery.com for more information and to get your free e-book (my gift to you). You can also order your copy of Expansion Mastery and get details about my soon-to-be released audio program, Appreciation Mastery. The photo of the Taizo Mandala is owned by the author. The photo of Zenkoji was taken from the internet and I claim no ownership of that particular photo. Have a wonderful day!

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Hey Everyone! Robert here!

Spiritual awakening and living in your own unique sense of conscious authenticity is not for the faint of heart – it requires an immense amount of courage. I’ve discussed the need for a warrior’s spirit in the book and past blog posts. I’ve talked at length about the courage needed in order to overcome your own ego, to still the mind, to be yourself, and to live in a sense of freedom. But today, I’m referring to an even deeper sense of courage, a degree of courage that’s unthinkable to most and unbelievable to some.

When I say “courage” in this article today, I’m not referring to the average, run-of-the-mill, bravery it takes to face common daily challenges personal growth practices. I’m talking about the ability to stand strong in the world while walking your own path, to take your stance in the universe while resisting all distractions from who you really are, and truly living authentically with a deep sense of freedom – even when that means giving up the acceptance of everyone around you and facing their disapproval head on.

We’re living in a time, at least in the US, where society is twisting everything, turning it inside-out and forcefully, even violently, insisting that everyone conforms to their ways. It’s becoming dangerous to stand alone against the herd. They want to trample those who don’t fit in. Those with viewpoints that differ from the herd’s; such as being fit and living healthy, consciously deciding not to have children in an overpopulated and unstable world, not giving into the mind-numbing distractions of television and the internet, and holding your own sense of self without the need for ego-stimulating beliefs, are all being viciously attacked as society applies pressure in order to force free spirits to conform. This form of awakened consciousness threatens the herd, it makes them uncomfortable, it causes them to see their falseness, and they don’t like any of it. They don’t like it because they don’t want to have to change or take responsibility for themselves – and they surely don’t like it when you do.

Society likes to create a norm based on the control of the herd. In order to be accepted, you’re required to live according to the rules they dictate. Otherwise, you cannot be one of them, you will no longer fit in, and no one will like you. You will be viewed as bad or weird. In order to be accepted, one must hold the beliefs they deem acceptable in order to continue existing in their sleep-like trance. You must surrender your own thoughts and feelings and mindlessly accept theirs while convincing yourself that those are your original thoughts anyway. You must fully give yourself to the distractions they deem acceptable. This way you can feel as though you fit in and have something in common with everyone else, that you’re accepted by them. You must surrender any sense of personal empowerment and authenticity to remain accepted. Society goes to great lengths to condition you for this from the very beginning by telling you that you’re a bad person, you should be ashamed of who you are, and need to be more like them in order to be good. To follow them, without question. Society tells you that if you accept your Self as you truly are, that you’ll be rejected by everyone else. Living as a member of the herd results in living a false existence where you become increasingly more phony and more disconnected from anything real, with each passing day.

In order to be accepted by society as a respectable member of its culture, you must reject your authentic Self. You must repress, surrender, and destroy the very being you were meant to be and surrender to the comfortably numb existence that they demonstrate to well. You must ignore the feelings in your heart and the guiding voice of your own essence. You must become stuck in your head and live as a slave to your own ego. You must willingly give in to all the senseless distractions that society places before themselves in order to continue living a mindless, ego-obsessed existence. This is a shallow, empty life of purposeless hypocrisy that take you farther and farther away from your own authentic reality.

Most people just blindly follow the herd without ever having a thought to the contrary enter their mind. They mindlessly accept what they’re told on the sleep walking notion of faith and act in the way they see everyone else acting so as to fit in and not be singled out. The nail that sticks up the farthest gets hit hardest by the hammer, right? Or burned at the stake, or stoned to death, or banished, etc. It’s human nature to take the easy way out, the path of least resistance, the road most travelled, letting others do the thinking for them. But that doesn’t make it right. It does, however, explain why there are so few extraordinary people in the world when the human race as a whole is overflowing with potential. Today, there are very, very few real leaders in the world and it’s now that we desperately need them.

Are you courageous enough to be yourself no matter what? Are you willing to face the disapproval of others and even danger in order to hold what you know to be right in your heart? Are you sure? Are you ready to remain steadfast in your own essence when the cultural norm insists that you act as a mindless, ego-driven, belief-stricken, clone of the herd? Can you hold strong in your sense of knowing that you’re worthy of your independence and individuality when everyone around you is telling you that you’re not? Can you remain true to yourself by being yourself even when society does their damnedest to convince you to be someone else and threatens to ostracize you? Are you willing to take your stance in the world to set your essence free instead of for attention to feed the ego?Do you have the courage to accept yourself as your Self when everyone else around you refuses to accept you? Are you willing to accept yourself no matter what may come of you? This is when a deeper sense of courage is needed, because this can be a very difficult dilemma to find yourself facing. This is the point where most people weaken and cower, as they go running back into the safety of the delusion created by society.

Just imagine the incredible courage required to face the fear of standing alone, separating yourself from the herd in order to live freely in your own authenticity of essence when nearly every single person you know in life is insisting it’s wrong. Consider the strength it must take to hold your stance and remain filled with joy when you’re being condemned or losing respectability. Think about that for a moment and ponder the courage necessary. Do you have what it takes to stay true to yourself or would you fold under the intense pressure of the opinions of others? Do you have the courage it takes to take your stance in the world and hold it as your own sense of truth – no matter what may come? Understand the amount of courage it takes to reject the beliefs forced upon you by society in order to know your own truth. Fathom the inner strength required to resist the social pressures placed upon you to conform to the norm.

Do you truly have what it takes to live your own authentic, awakened life? This is the courage necessary for true spiritual growth, for the ultimate freedom of the essence, to take your stance in the universe as the being you came here to be and to live authentically. One cannot know what it is to be awakened until they exercise this degree of courage. Take your stance in the universe and hold it with a sense of inner knowing. Know who you are and what your purpose is. Reclaim your individuality and hold on tightly to what you know in your heart to be the truth, your truth – it’s a rare and precious gift. This is the path to intense happiness because it’s only on this path that you can take responsibility for yourself and through this sense of responsibility you can become completely free. This type of freedom is where authenticity resides and only a free and authentic individual can grow through the layers of consciousness to reach the heights of an awakened being.

Hey Everyone! Robert here!

In light of the responses I had yesterday regarding personal-spiritual freedom, I felt it necessary to cover an additional area of interest with this topic. As you know, I have had my own experiences with the lack of freedom caused by my failure to develop a sense of authenticity. I was independent as hell, living on my own at 16, but I was in survival mode and not in a position to develop a healthy sense of authenticity. That would come much later in life for me. Well, responsibility is another area in which I have directly experienced a lack of freedom. When we hear the word responsibility it may seem as a direct contradiction to freedom; therein lies the paradox. I would like to share my understanding of this in the hopes that it may bring you to a higher degree of freedom and a more rewarding life.

First, let’s establish something very important. There are those who, through their own lack of authenticity and desire to “do the right thing,” accept the responsibilities that others are so eager to dump on their shoulders. I know, because I was one of these people. I allowed those around me to dump their responsibilities onto me and I labored to carry them around as best as I could. Sooner or later the load becomes unbearable, the shoulders cannot take the stress any longer, and you break. It’s never a good experience. Be authentic, notice when others are attempting to burden you with their responsibilities – and refuse to accept them! Each of us has their own responsibilities in life and they serve as part of our life lessons. When we drop them in someone else’s lap, not only do we unfairly load more stress onto them, but we also fail to learn the life lesson placed before us. It may seem noble and heroic to accept the responsibilities of another, but I assure you it’s neither. When you are buried under the weight of burdens that rightfully belong to another you are unable to address your own responsibilities and learn your own unique life lessons. Do your best to avoid this situation and stand strong in your own authenticity while helping those around you to do the same. In this way, you can experience the joy of freedom from excess responsibility.

Taking full responsibility for yourself is an act of personal and spiritual freedom. When you act from your own sense of authenticity and accept the responsibilities that are meant to be yours in life, you are free. In this way you directly encounter the life lessons placed before you and you experience the growth gained from those lessons. This soul expansion is the essence of freedom.

With that being said, let’s look into another area of responsibility. For this, I will use the analogy of the parent-child relationship. You should apply this analogy to other situations as well. A parent has many responsibilities to both themselves and to their child(ren). The problem is that parents today refuse to let go of the responsibility for their child once the child reaches a point in their young lives where they need to experience it. Yes, they absolutely need to. This problem is two-fold and a growing issue among the youth in the western world. Parents are assuming all the responsibility for their child even as they mature into adulthood. This is because they are unable to let go of this added responsibility for fear that they will have no purpose in life. They feel so incomplete and disconnected within themselves that they project their child’s issues onto themselves and then selfishly cling to them while convincing themselves they are their own. This is something I witness daily. Because the parent never bothered to develop their own sense of identity and discover their own life purpose, they cling to and hide behind the responsibilities of parenthood. In this way, the adult keeps themselves chained to their child and their child chained to them, never experiencing the sweet freedom of their own life purpose and soul-expanding experience.

The other side of this is even more devastating and tragic in the way that it negatively impacts the child. When the child is sheltered from the responsibility they need to grow and develop their own sense of identity, they remain unsure of who they are, frightened and unable to function productively in the world. When the parent refuses to allow the child to experience responsibility, they deny them the opportunity to develop a sense of identity that comes from self-pride. When the child comes face to face with a responsibility (which is a disguised life lesson), they feel the inner sense of pride of accomplishment. As the child experiences forms of accomplishment, they begin to establish their sense of personal identity and are able to take up their stance in the world. This is what the Japanese refer to as “Kamae.” When the parent denies their child the ability to know and grow through the satisfying experiences of accomplishment, they keep the child dependent upon them. This prohibits the child from knowing their own sense of freedom. They never develop the desire to experience the world because they were prevented from ever knowing failure or accomplishment. They have no ambition because they have been stripped of their ability to develop an identity. They fail to know the sensation and drive for individuality. The have no natural desire to spread their wings and fly from the nest because they know there’s no need to even try. They give up before they ever begin. Then the nest becomes their prison, a prison that mommy and daddy keep making increasingly comfortable so the child never realizes that they’re in prison at all. In this way, the child is enslaved by their own parents, never knowing how incredible it feels to fly and play on the currents of the wind.

A healthy parent knows full well that it’s their primary responsibility to raise their child and teach them to become their own person and be a positive addition to the world. A parent teaches and releases. A parent must encourage the freedom for their child and guide them to finding it, not keeping it out of reach. How could an empowered parent possibly desire a life of imprisonment for their child? How could they desire to prevent their child from living the grand adventure of life in order to satisfy their own selfish needs and feelings of incompleteness? We’ve all heard the phrase, “If you truly love something set it free,” yet we fail to grasp its meaning. Everything needs to be free, we cannot cling to something or someone else out of our own lack of authenticity and ability to live life for ourselves. We must know freedom for ourselves and encourage it in others so they might know it too.

We must be courageous in life and not allow ourselves to become complacent or mindless. This sense of inner strength, mindfulness, personal responsibility, and authenticity are our gates to freedom. Beware of giving your power away as when you do you give away your freedom as well. A prison is a prison regardless if the walls are concrete or mental projections – either way you end up a prisoner. Likewise, be very cautious of beliefs that encourage you to sit back and do nothing while someone else promises you some sort of salvation. The only person responsible for your awakening or “salvation” is you. It can only be found through your own conscious efforts, no one else can give you this gift. This too, is willfully surrendering your power. True freedom requires accepting full responsibility for ourselves and only ourselves while undertaking the task of personal growth and soul-expansion that come from our direct interaction with life. The sense of freedom I have been referring to can never be forcefully taken from you by anyone – it has to be surrendered. Never surrender. Freedom is far to precious a gift. It may be a paradox, but that’s where truth is always found. This is the truth of inner freedom.

Hey Everyone! Robert here!

Human beings naturally crave happiness and love, this is a well-known fact, right? But, have you realized that you also have a deep down yearning for something else? That would be – Freedom. People desire a sense of freedom. It’s in our nature to be free. Even the most kind and peaceful of people will fight to the death to remain free.

There are many types of freedom. Financial freedom is an obvious, yet important sense of freedom because it allows you to experience the world and feel secure. You aren’t forced to live hand to mouth in a manner that sends you into survival mode every time an auto repair needs to be done or your student loan payment needs to be made. Other obvious types of freedom include being free of physical restraints, and having liberty from oppression and slavery, and the freedom to express yourself. But, it’s not these obvious types of freedom I care to discuss in this article. I would like to awaken you to a deeper sense of freedom. Freedom that you long for deep inside, even if you aren’t consciously aware of it – yet. Freedom that requires you to break free from the non-physical restraints that are holding you back in life.

From a spiritual perspective, the freedom I’m referring to is not an external sense involving metal chains, iron bars, concrete walls, or being hopelessly in debt from borrowing money to live on without a means to repay it, or even government handouts that keep you oppressed and dependent. I’m referring to an internal, independent, awakened sense of freedom. This is where true freedom is found. Most people live a life of slavery and oppression and don’t even realize it. The majority of those people don’t have the slightest inclination that they have willingly accepted this fate, placing themselves in the chains and throwing away the key without any knowledge of the consequences for their actions. This sense of spiritual freedom is not a right, you are not entitled to it, it’s not something you can take from someone else, nor make them give to you; it’s a responsibility. It’s the highest form of responsibility to your self. Here are 5 forms of true freedom.

Freedom from Ego. The ego is known as the “false master” for good reason. When the ego is allowed to dominate the mind, it gladly rules your entire life. Is it not slavery to have “something else” control your every thought, emotion, word and action? As you know, your thoughts and emotions create and influence the world around you. Your thoughts are not your own when the ego is in charge. That never-ending noise in your head is the voice of the ego and it has effectively drowned out the gentle voice of your true Self. Therefore, the world around you which is created by thought, has been created for you by the ego. How can that be the world you desired? It’s not the world you would consciously create for yourself, is it? Yet, you’re continuously forced to live in a world that your ego desires and you have absolutely no exit strategy. You are forced to speak and act as a mindless puppet of your ego, as it tugs upon your strings and moves your mouth with its hand placed firmly up your…. well, you get the idea. How much clearer does it need to be – your ego is certainly not your amigo. You end up serving the egoic mind as your master and it’s a false master. Nothing good can come of that. It’s a master completely undeserving of your divinity and loyalty.

For those who are unawakened, they remain in the egoic sleep state throughout their entire lives, serving and bowing to the ego without ever even realizing they are enslaved. They believe that their ego is who they are, yet they have no idea who they truly are. This type of egoic slavery is wide-spread and sweeping across the planet like a notorious, viral wave. True freedom comes through awakening, through mindfulness, through taking measures to observe and expose the ego, and then to overcome it. Upon achieving success, you begin to reclaim control of your mind and awaken the heart-mind which allows you to hear your true voice which reside in your heart center. That of your Higher Self. Your vibration rises as your eyes open wider to see the world for yourself. To be free of ego is to experience the true freedom of Self. This sense of freedom allows you to know your Self and live from your heart. Where there is ego, there is the absence of one’s true Self. They cannot co-exist.

Freedom from Mind. The mind is a maximum security prison for many. This prison was constructed with bricks made of worry, anxiety, incessant chatter, over activity, false beliefs, and the inescapable need for information. This is a virtual prison linked to the egoic mind, yet it seems incredibly and painfully real to those being restrained within its cold walls. While this may be an extension of the egoic state of mind as discussed above, I feel it deserves separate recognition because of how common this sort of suffering has become. I see good people suffering from this mental affliction on a daily basis and it’s heartbreaking. To bring the mind to stillness and eventually to a state of No-Mind is one of the highest forms of freedom that a non-physical spirit in physical human form can experience. No-Mind is the means by which one can escape this mental prison that never truly existed in the first place. No-Mind allows you to simply be. Upon achieving No-Mind, these virtual walls instantly fall from existence and all that remains is what is. Nothing more, nothing less. Welcome to freedom!

Freedom from the Past and Future. Being in the Here and Now, the present moment is freedom. When we’re restrained by the past or possessed by the future; we have lost our sense of true freedom and with it our Self. This freedom can only be experienced in the present moment. How many people are enslaved by their own inability to let go of the past? Obsessed with the need to heal something that doesn’t need healing, it merely needs you to let go of it. It’s only difficult when your ego makes it so. The egoic mind keeps you clinging to the need for closure and healing when it’s completely inconsequential – just let it go. How many more are controlled and paralyzed by fear and uncertainty of the future? Does it truly make any sense to fear what doesn’t exist? When you experience the moment of the Here and Now, you know freedom. You taste it, your breathe it in, you live it for yourself. You feel as though you can breathe unrestricted for the first time. You slip the bonds of the past and future to run free in the expansiveness of the present moment. This is why the present is considered to be a gift. It’s the gift of freedom.

Freedom from Beliefs. Beliefs fortify the mental prison. The very nature of a belief creates a closed-minded reinforcement for the ego. The more adamantly one clings to their beliefs, the harder the heavy mental iron bars slam shut and the thicker their prison walls become. That sort of thing will drive a person insane. Beliefs are nothing more than mental constructs, usually put in place by someone else with their own agenda. More often than you may care to realize, your beliefs are actually not your own at all, they never were. Our own beliefs can only be formed from actual direct experience. The awakened mind however, living silently in the moment without ego, has no need for beliefs. They are seen as unnecessary tools used by the ego to feel safe and in control. To become free of beliefs is to unchain yourself from the theories of others and actually experience the truth of life for yourself. When you experience the adventure of life without the confinement of beliefs, you will taste the sweetness of truth and the manner in which your adventure was meant to be experienced. You will know the freedom of thinking, feeling, speaking and acting for yourself, and this will come from your heart.

Freedom from Disempowerment. Freedom cannot be discussed with authenticity. Authenticity IS freedom. This is one of the most important aspects of freedom and indeed, the very core of what it represents. Developing a state of personal authenticity offers a tremendous and powerful sense of freedom on every level. When we act from awakened authenticity, we are expressing our sense of freedom as our true Self. This authenticity comes from being your own person without the influences, demands, opinions, or expectations of others. When we break free of the shackles associated with social and cultural expectations and accepted norms used to fit in and stand lock-kneed among the herd; we get to walk our own path and to feel a sense of who we truly are. I’m not referring to the entitled attitude of “I’ll do what I want, if they don’t like it they don’t have to look.” This is nothing more than the immature ego. Truly awakened authenticity carries with it a higher sense of responsibility. This responsibility is not to another, but to one’s Higher Self. It’s beyond the laws of man or the opinions of others; this is divine law and a sense of truth that you know is right from within.

Authenticity is lost or stolen in a myriad of ways. It’s surrendered to others when we haven’t yet established our own sense of identity. It’s taken by others who instruct us on what beliefs we should hold and what we should accept as truth; when we fail to experience them for ourselves. It’s stripped away slowly but surely as we accept role upon role in life. We keep piling on ourselves until we are so buried under the weight of all these roles that we can’t possibly be aware of ourselves any longer. This is a typical response of someone who is not living their life path or purpose. Burying one’s Self in this way is symbolic of creating spiritual suicide because they are too fearful to make important life changes. It’s not unlike burying your head in the sand. Each newly adopted life-role pulls us further from who we are and who we were meant to be, lowering our vibration during the process of losing our identity. Think about all the roles you play in life… child, grandchild, brother, sister, cousin, uncle, aunt, pet owner, parent, employee, hobbyist, spouse, teacher, friend, citizen, home owner, employer, committee member, and so on and so on and so on. As the list grows ever longer, so too does the path back to finding your Self. Living your life the way you think others want you to live is absurd, yet many people continue to surrender their personal power and live according to the views of their parents, spouses, or societal expectations. I know because I was trapped in this situation for many years due to my own lack of authenticity. I can sympathize. Its suffocating, it will strangle the life from you before you know it. How is it not self-induced slavery when we allow others to make our decisions and dictate our lives?

Awakened authenticity requires a strong independent stance in the world. It focuses on stepping away from allowing others to control you and learning how to be guided by your own Higher Self, your inner light. You step away from the need for acceptance and validation of others and you live from a perspective that is right for you. You think completely for your Self and hold an unconditionally opened mind and heart. This degree of authenticity takes place when you live in complete harmony with your Higher Self and you no longer have the need to mindlessly follow the herd or be consumed with socially accepted distractions. When you taste the powerful sense of freedom given through authenticity you’ll have the courage to take your individual stance in the world and invoke action to bring about the world you wish to experience. You will then live life on your terms, having your own unique adventure while naturally serving the greater good of all humanity, nature, and the universe. You came into this world to know this sort of freedom, to fully experience this soul-expanding adventure, so my only question is… are you?

Please visit our website at http://www.expansionmastery.com for more information, to order your signed copy of Expansion Mastery: The Practical Guide to Living a Fully Engaged Life, and to get your free e-book. There will also be information regarding the soon to be released audio program, Appreciation Mastery (TM). Thank you and be free!

Hey Everyone! Robert here!

As I was lying in bed this morning at 5:13am, I performed my Appreciation Mastery practice and then I was left to reflect upon a few things before we had to get up at 6:30. My creative juices began flowing and I was once again overflowing with insights shared with me by my loving Essence. I would like to share one of the insights in the hope that it may serve you to succeed in all areas of your life.

I’ve noticed a recent increasing trend in self-help and psychological treatments geared toward the “changing your thoughts’ and “reprogramming your mind.” All in the name of correcting self-sabotaging thoughts in order to experience greater success or a healthier lifestyle. I see the latest and greatest experts, Ph.D.’s, and gurus alike presenting their methods for using various mental tricks, mind manipulations, or medications to help you change this type of thinking and behavior. Everything from NLP to meditation to Psychotropic drugs are being packaged as the latest and greatest so-called cure. But they aren’t a cure at all. Many experts attempt to correct this problem through various manipulations of the brain, but the true problem lies in the mind.

As I was lying in bed reflecting on this topic, I thought, “Hey, I bet people would like the truth about this in a few sentences.” Wouldn’t a simple, straight forward, practical answer be a refreshing change? How about a clear path to correct the problem without having to spend hundreds and hundreds of dollars in the process? I’m not going to charge you for it, but please don’t tell the others who are trying so diligently to pedal their temporary cures. I know they mean well.

The primary problem is that most of the experts are following the same misguided model as the American Medical Industry, they seek to alleviate the symptoms without ever addressing the actual cause of the problem. In this day and age of awakening, one would think that people would understand what happens to an adhesive bandage (Band-Aid) when we get into the shower. Instead, they keep mindlessly buying more bandages. These systems provide a momentary patch over the symptom in the same way that an aspirin relieves the headache, but never addresses what’s causing the headache in the first place. Changing or thoughts often results in momentary relief, but before long you’ll find yourself right back in the old routine just as you always have. Reprogramming your mind for success results in the same fruitless attempt as the mind will slip back to its default setting at some point. The reason for the ineffectiveness of such things is because they don’t address the root cause, the real problem; as usual they only temporarily mask the symptom. Self-sabotaging thoughts are the symptoms not the cause of the problem.

If you’ve read my book, Expansion Mastery: The Practical Guide to Living a Fully Engaged Life – and I’m sure you have! 😉 Then you may have noticed that I didn’t include anything at all about the fear of success, self-sabotage, or self-defeating behavior. Why did I leave these important topics out? Did I somehow forget to include such crucial information? Way to miss the boat, Robert! No, not at all, it simply wasn’t necessary. It wasn’t necessary because if you follow the “challenges” I present in the book you’ll correct these issues (and many more) at their source! Although, just as a blind man cannot know and appreciate the exquisite, shimmering luster of the well cut diamond; neither can the unawakened know the depth of what I included in the book. There is truly far more there than anyone has yet realized.

Remember the ancient Chinese Proverb, “If you give a man a fish you feed him for a day. If you teach a man to fish you feed him for a lifetime?” Well, I desire to serve you through “teaching you how to fish” in order to correct the root cause of this problem. So here’s the whole truth…

“Your thoughts are not the reason for your self-sabotage, or your self-defeating behaviors, or even your fear of success. These thoughts are only the symptoms. Your ego is responsible for this! Overcome the ego and you immediately extinguish these types of thoughts and behaviors in the same manner as the darkness vanishes when the light switch is turned on.”

There it is. I share effective practices for overcoming the ego in various ways in the form of “challenges” for spiritual and personal advancement. then you don’t have to chase down every symptom in an attempt to heal it, they are all healed when the common root cause is corrected. You can continue running after the thousands of symptoms or you can cure the few root causes. Which makes more sense to you? When you make progress in this area all self-sabotaging thoughts and self-defeating excuses fad away. There is nothing left to work on. You don’t need to change anything, you don’t need to reprogram anything; just get the ego out of your mind so your own thoughts can dominate your mind and the problem is gone.

For most, the ego so completely dominates their mind and actions that their true Self is shoved in a corner, facing the wall in a time-out that lasts their entire lifetime. Most of the rampant, spastic thoughts rocketing through your head are not really your own. You certainly believe that they are, but in reality they are the product of the ego, not the real you. The ego forms infinite excuses disguised as “intellectual reasoning” in order to prevent your success. Why would it do that to you? Simple, the ego’s arch rival is change and growth. Change results in growth and growth results in your personal advancement and elevation, and that lessens your dependency on the ego. Each step on the path of personal elevation takes the ego one step closer to being exposed for what it is – unnecessary and not you. You reach a point where growth can no longer happen with the subduing of the ego and that means “death” for the ego. Ego and essence cannot coexist, therefore the rise of your maturity and essence means certain death for the immature ego. It will fight with all the dirty, manipulative tricks at its disposal, it will pitch a fit its own demise. The egoic mind is the root cause and actual problem that must be corrected, otherwise, you will simply default right back to old behaviors as soon as you let your mental guard down.

When we shift from ego to essence, we live with the thoughts of our true self. In levels of essence mastery, we live with no thoughts (no-mind) and the only voice we hear in that of our inner voice (spirit, essence) compassionately guiding us. There is simply no possibility for self sabotaging thoughts, unless we allow the ego to creep back in – which we do not. There is no fear of success because your essence only wants what’s best for you and guides you to exactly what you need exactly when you need it. There is only moving forward. Since self-defeating behaviors are merely the outward manifestation of self-sabotaging thoughts, they are eliminated as well. This is the cure. How do you effectively subdue your ego? I provide plenty of practical methods in my book, read it closely and you’ll have a very inexpensive remedy.

Legal stuff. I have to include that the practices I offer are not meant as a substitute for professional mental health care, nor are they meant as a cure for any ailment. Just because they worked extremely well for me doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll get the same results. Blah, blah, blah. Please visit us at http://www.expansionmastery.com to order your autographed and personalized copy of Expansion Mastery, and for detail concerning my soon to be released audio programs. As always, thanks for being awesome!

Hey Everyone! Robert & Amy here!

As promised, my beautiful wife, Amy, has joined forces with me to bring you this very special Valentine’s Day edition article. I felt it might be refreshing to hear the perspective of this holiday from both male and female points of view. Plus, what better way to share the Soul-Mate perspective of this romantic holiday than to have both Soul-Mates provide their insights on the subject? We are bringing you this article in the hopes of reclaiming the positive and loving message of Valentine’s Day that seems to have been lost, tossed aside in favor of the more sensible approach of the ordinary, ego-driven mind. Let’s reclaim the romance! Let’s recover the heart-centered love! Let’s take back Valentine’s Day as a day for lovers!

As you well know, we do not throw around the term “Soul-Mate” lightly. We take this very seriously and mean it quite literally. Not as some over-used fluffy feel-good term, but as an honest-to-goodness term describing the experience with the one and only person in the world, your Soul-Mate. The other half of your soul!

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Valentine’s Day has been taking a beating in the form of bad press over the past few years and it’s even worse this year. As the media increases its negative and fear driven approach, more articles are written from the negative minds it has infected. It’s important to keep sight of the fact that these types of articles are written by unawakened, ordinary-minded individuals in ordinary relationships or in no relationship at all. When seen through the awakened eyes of extraordinary individuals engaged in an extraordinary relationship, the truth is seen far more clearly. It’s like the existence of two very different worlds within the same dimension. When I speak of the “ordinary” and “extraordinary” it is in reference to those who are unawakened and those who have shifted into a sense of being awakened. I will share more about the three dimensions of relationship in our incredible upcoming Soul-Mate book. The focus of this holiday is love; the purest of intentions, the highest of all vibrations. These misguided articles of stress and anxiety are based in fear. Fear is the opposite of love in every way, it’s the lowest of all vibrations. Why then should we fill ourselves with fear instead of love on this day? We shouldn’t. We should persist more than ever to open our hearts, raise our vibrations, and let our spirit soar, filling our day with love, romance, and appreciation. Let your soul dance freely in unity with its other half.

So, my wife and I have joined forces to reclaim this positive, love-filled holiday. This is a day for lovers, it’s a day for unconditional love. Even if you are currently in the process of attracting your Soul-Mate, we want you to know you are not alone. You are loved. We love you. And it’s important to remember to always love yourself, you can’t attract your Soul-Mate without loving yourself first. We felt that it would be fun and enjoyable to share this wonderful holiday from the perspective of awakened Soul-Mates. I am going to offer a couple of unfortunate, yet typical statements that we have found repeatedly stressed in online articles. They are indicative of the mind that has succumbed to the negative epidemic of the ego. In response, we are going to offer our opinions of those subjects. I hope you find it enlightening.

Valentine’s Day is a day of stress, anxiety, and disappointment. It’s artificial and superficial. It gives men the opportunity to forget about romance throughout the rest of the year.

ROBERT: The way you feel about Valentine’s Day is a direct reflection of your feelings in regards to your own relationship. Its true. Stress and anxiety are a sign of the times in which we live, but they don’t need to be the excuse for not wishing to celebrate this holiday. Many people are feeling these ill effects due to the uncertainty and fearful nature of these quickly changing times. Because of the increase in people being stuck in their heads and consumed by their ego, and being consumed by fear; their nervous systems are completely fried. This causes stress, tension, and anxiety over the least little occurrence. But this doesn’t have to be the case on Valentine’s Day. Take this day to relax, set all other things aside and focus on the one true love of your life. How can you make this day special for them? There’s no need to feel pressured into a relationship just because its Valentine’s Day. Be happy spending the day with yourself as you wait patiently to attract your one and only Soul-Mate. Likewise, it shouldn’t be stressful or as though you are inconvenienced, to plan something special for the one you love. Again, pay attention to how you’re feeling as it may offer some truth regarding your relationship. The holiday should be fun, exciting, and an opportunity to express your love to your one true love. It should offer you the opportunity to spend time with the person you love doing something special that you both enjoy. If you really know the person you’re with, which is the core of any relationship, the act of you engaging in a thoughtful gesture will be as exciting for you as it is for them to receive it. It melts my heart to see my wife’s face light up. When she’s elated by an experience I created for her or by something I give her, it simply makes my day so much brighter and I feel my heart overflowing with joy.

Seeing this holiday as artificial or superficial is nothing more than the viewpoint of the egoic mind. There is nothing artificial about love. Nor is there anything artificial in being willing to share that love – so long as your love is true. Expressing your love with material things is perfectly fine. Of course, love is the primary focus, but let’s face facts, we all enjoy giving and receiving gifts. The inability to gracefully receive exposes the presence of the ego. Is it artificial to want to do something extra-special for the one person you love most in the world on this particular day? I think not. Is it artificial to desire to make the effort to know what they enjoy and get it for them, or set up an experience for them? Not even a little bit. If whatever you do – dinner, dancing, flowers, jewelry, a romantic card, a heart-felt embrace, a tender kiss, a meaningful “I love you” – comes from your heart, how can that possibly be perceived as superficial? Showing your love is meant to be a genuine heart-felt act, not the thought-based result of purchasing of gifts. Any gifts are meant to be a material representation of the eternal love you feel for the other person. I always have special plans in place throughout the day to brighten Amy’s day. Because nothing brightens my day as much as her happiness.

AMY: I’ve been a little startled this year at seeing all the negative press about Valentine’s Day. When did a holiday about sharing love turn into something dreadful? Even amongst my coworkers I hear that no one is bothering to celebrate, that they won’t even see their significant other or do anything special. Others say that they will have a family dinner with their children. The core of this holiday is about expressing your love to the special person in your life, and it should be a joyful experience; with your love! While it’s great to think your children are special, take this time to reconnect with your partner and create a romantic experience together; this cannot be accomplished if you make it a family affair. I’ve heard from female acquaintances that Valentine’s Day is just an excuse to allow men to slack off the rest of the year, and I think this is an unfortunate mindset. Robert treats me wonderfully every day of the year, and on holiday’s like this, it’s just a chance to go a little farther than normal for each other. This doesn’t mean we accept negative behavior the rest of the time; if you truly love someone you don’t have the desire to do anything hurtful towards them. So many people allow holidays to stress them out and cause anxiety, when there is no need to put all of these negative emotions on it. When Robert and I are together, any stress and anxiety I was feeling previously melts away; I feel like I’ve come “home” and am at peace, filled with love and happiness. If being in the presence of your partner doesn’t put you at ease, and the thought of spending the evening with them doesn’t thrill you, then perhaps they are simply not the right one. If you don’t have a relationship at this time, don’t waste this day feeling resentful, depressed, or angry at those who do- take the time to show love to yourself! Pamper yourself in some way, however you would best enjoy it- perhaps a great meal, a spa treatment, or an evening pursing some activity that you love.

The Soul-Mate Perspective of Valentine‘s Day.

ROBERT: From a Soul-Mate perspective, Valentine’s Day is an exciting way to show your love in new and creative ways that can manifest into the physical, material world or remain as intangible heart-felt acts of love. When you are an awakened being with your Soul-Mate by your side, every day is an opportunity to express your love. Every step you take together is based in that love. This doesn’t mean that we don’t need Valentine’s Day, indeed, I see this as a wonderful opportunity to go above and beyond what I do for her daily. One of the things we mutually desired from the celebration of this holiday was to enjoy a special dinner somewhere very nice. So, each year we talk about what we are hungry for and we work together to seek out an exciting new upper scale restaurant to visit and share a romantic meal. It’s easy to decide on the location because we think alike and have the same tastes, which is evidence of being with your Soul-Mate. This has become the core of our own personal custom for the holiday. Of course, we get each other gifts of some sort as well, but the idea is to spend time together and to truly open our hearts and connect to one another very deeply. To offer our complete undivided attention to each other, immersing ourselves into the other. I feel that’s an important component of Valentine’s Day. When you’re with your true Soul-Mate, there is no reason to feel stress, anxiety or worry. Nor are your gestures artificial or superficial, they are genuine expressions of love directly from your heart to theirs.

Our Valentine’s Day is always filled with loving gestures, caring gifts, and wonderfully romantic experiences to share. I want my loving wife to be surrounded by beautiful, fragrant flowers, to see her smile when opening a gift, and enveloped in the enjoyment of a fine meal. I appreciate nothing more than looking across the table of a romantic restaurant into her incredible eyes as our souls embrace. No words need be spoken, we already know what the other is thinking and feeling. Our eyes fill with tears as our hearts overflow with true love and our vibrations take flight as our souls see themselves in each other. This is such a powerful experience of raw spiritual connection that we both acknowledge and cherish. This is a Soul-Mate Valentine’s Day. Now doesn’t it sound worth celebrating!?

AMY: As I have no doubt that Robert is my Soul-Mate, I would like to share what I feel to be the essence of Valentine’s Day with an anecdote from our lives. When we first moved to California, we had a lot of external circumstances to deal with. Just to give a glimpse, among these were getting re-acclimated to the United States after spending a month abroad in China, having to unpack all of our boxes and furniture from the moving POD in three days, and trying to focus on the start of my new job. There was a lot of external stress, but we didn’t allow it to creep in and effect our relationship with each other. Now, the thing that made me fall in love with our new apartment was the kitchen, which had been fully remodeled before we moved in. Robert and I had grown to love cooking together, and I couldn’t wait to start using the kitchen, especially with all the fresh local ingredients we have access to here, but it wasn’t possible; our stacks of boxes and unpacked belongings filled every countertop and spare square inch of floor. Robert knew I was distressed about this, but I didn’t say much because it was simply a matter of circumstance that had to be dealt with for the time being.

We had gotten each other heartfelt cards and were planning a nice dinner, but due to only one vehicle and really not knowing what was even around our new home, we didn’t have a chance for gifts. On my first day of work- which was on Valentine’s Day!- we had a special breakfast together at the hotel next door before I had to brave the California highways and plunge into my new career. As I returned home, wearily walking in the front door, I was astonished to see my kitchen sparkling clean and box-free. Robert had unpacked all of our kitchen wares, putting them in the proper places, moved all the boxes out of the space, and cleaned the entire thing so it would be available for me. I can’t even imagine how hard he must have worked to accomplish this by the time I came home. To me, this was an incredibly loving gesture from his heart, trying to do something creative that would truly make me happy. I am still touched by it to this day. We spent the rest of the evening at a wonderful seafood restaurant called Fish, right on the harbor in Sausalito, eating steaming bowls of fresh caught delicacies and watching the sea lions play in the waves during sunset. I think this shares the epitome of a Soul-Mate Valentine’s Day; to be loving and do whatever you can to make the other person’s day, taking time to revel in the romance and connection you have to one another.

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There you go. I would like to express my appreciation to my amazing, intelligent, and gorgeous wife for taking the time to share her perspective here with us. We are collaborating on a book project right now that will offer the truth about Soul-Mates, redefine what they are believed to be, and explain in detail why this experience is the Holy Grail of relationships. We promise there will be no New Age fluff or sappy silliness – only the most incredible, mind-blowing content ever written on this subject! Then there will be an audio program to follow. This program will include a complete home study course, showing you the way to attracting your Soul-Mate into your life. If that’s still not enough – how would like to attend a special live event held by Amy and myself? We will be working directly with participants to set them on the path to successfully attracting their Soul-Mates, while answering questions, sharing insights, and blowing the roof off the place with our vibrations alone! We promise to offer insights that you will not find anywhere else and they work because they’ll be exactly what we did.

We feel that it’s time to reclaim this lover’s holiday and fill it with the positive energy it deserves. Who cares who made it up or why? Use it as another opportunity to take your love to another level and show that one special person how much you truly care, how much your love continues to grow, and that you hold them in your heart constantly. Allow this day to encourage you to begin living a far more heart-centered life. We hope this inspires you to enjoy your Valentine’s Day, whether you are in a Soul-Mate relationship or not. May it be overflowing with true love, everlasting joy, and an awakened extraordinary relationship! Amy and I would like to open our hearts and share our love with all of you on this incredible day of love and romance.

Please keep checking back at http://www.expansionmastery.com for updates regarding our Soul-Mate book, audio program and live events!

I would like to acknowledge and thank Cathy Carter and those who created the fantastic Valentine’s Day artwork that were borrowed from the internet. These are creative and beautiful pieces that I am so pleased to share with all of you. I claim no right to them as I do not own them.

Hey Everyone! Robert here!

Since the topic of “Heaven on Earth” seems to keep showing up in my experience right now, I felt it only appropriate to share it here with all of you. Who doesn’t wish for a life that’s Heaven on Earth? While this idea seems ever-elusive or even fantasy-like to most people, are you aware that there is an actual path mapped out for us explaining how to create it? This is an important theme throughout my book, because I feel it’s the result of living fully as a human being. It’s actually the central theme that my entire book is based upon. Someone who creates Heaven on Earth is a Being who’s living in direct connection with Heaven and Earth. This is not just a metaphor or myth, it’s something very real. Between Heaven and Earth is the rightful place of a fully actualized human Being. It is then, that they not only make the choice to live this idea of Heaven on Earth, but actually manifest it into time-space reality.

What steps are you taking to create a life that is Heaven on Earth? Do you have an action plan in place? What practices do you have in place to deeply connect yourself to Heaven? What are you doing to live in harmony with Nature and to know the Earth? What are you doing to become an awakened Being? Heaven on Earth is not something you simply dream up in your head and believe to be true, its something very “tangible.”

In the practices of Qigong, Bagua, Taiji, and other internal practices, we literally focus on bringing the energy of Heaven down to Earth as well as drawing the energy of Earth up to Heaven. These practices allow us to intimately know and connect with these incredible, powerful energies. Through meditation and other spiritual vibration raising practices, we can become well-acquainted with our own Divinity, especially once the ego has been overcome and we’re able to clearly hear our own inner voice. Raising our vibration and holding this raised vibration is an important first step on this path. This helps connect us to spirit. Connecting to the Earth requires more than spending time in nature – although that’s a wonderful part of it. It requires us to recognize the planet as a living entity; to care for and appreciate her. Live in harmony with the seasons and your immediate environment and treat your physical body with respect as a representation of the Earth. Living in harmony with our own humanity is extremely important. We must first open our heart and connect to ourselves, accepting and loving ourselves, it’s then that we can truly love one another. There is so little love and human connection in the world right now because people are not able to love themselves. Separateness is not what we need. The idea of “I look out for number one” is the voice of the ego, not of humanism. Once we become connected to our own sense of Being, then we are able to easily connect to the greater sense of humanity as a whole.

This is living in harmony with the universal truth of Heaven, Earth and Being (Humanity). Then, by activating your own Divinity, you come to know the very nature of Heaven, not as an imaginary place somewhere in the clouds, but within your own heart. As you do this, you become more connected to and appreciative of Nature. Nature is the manifestation of the Earth, and discovering how human Beings are not separate from, but deeply connected to Nature allows us to know the essence of Earth. As we connect more to the forces of Heaven and Earth we become more connected to one another, we feel the oneness of our own Being as well as that of all beings. We come to realize that we are all blood brothers and sisters. This cannot be denied as every one of us has blood coursing through our veins.

Once this is clearly attained and brought into balance we hold Heaven and Earth inside us. Once internalized, we can manifest it into our outer world of time, space and matter; this results in creating a life that is far from the ordinary sleepwalking, stuck-in-the-head human experience. It becomes and extraordinary experience of the awakened being and you find yourself living a life that takes your breath away to even think about. This life is overflowing with authentic love, happiness, wonder, and a constant state of appreciation. You walk every step of your awakened life path fully connected to the Divinity of Heaven and the Nature of Earth. I wrote Expansion Mastery with the hopes that it may serve others in achieving this extraordinary life. A life that is simply Heaven on Earth.

Creating Heaven on Earth is not merely about enjoying your life experience, it’s a concept that must be put into action creating a direct and conscious unity of Heaven, Earth and your own Humanity. This concept is also known as Spirituality, Ecology, and Humanism by certain esoteric traditions. It permeates nearly every ancient spiritual system and is at the very essence of our existence. It is truth. But experiencing Heaven on Earth is not something you can sit back and wait to have happen to you, nor is it something you can force. It is, however, something you develop within yourself and then manifest outward. You are responsible for creating this for yourself and the only way to do that is to have specific practices in place that awaken you; connecting you deeply to Heaven, Earth and your own sense of Being. It’s not as difficult as it may seem once you understand the path to creating it.

Hey Everyone! Robert here.

While enjoying a hot cup of brown tea from the Meiji Shrine this morning I couldn’t help but ponder something. This idea came out of nowhere and seemed to weigh on my mind insisting to be recognized and to have the attention that it so deserves placed upon it. So here it is…

What if there were a global shift in priorities from sports to spiritual awakening!?

Can you imagine!!! Sports or Spirituality? If you couldn’t have both (and you can’t), which would you consciously choose?

The truth of the matter is that people everywhere are force-fed a number of distractions every day. Most blindly trot along with the herd without the slightest real thought of their own. Sports, politics, religions, and celebrity gossip are currently among the top of the list of things that provide mass distraction. These things serve to cause separation among the people of the world and to increase the ego all while providing the illusion/delusion of togetherness and teamwork. Remember, where there is ego, there is the absence of spirit. Indeed these topics cause a sense of separateness within the world, each country, each state, each city, and even within some households. They cause us to disassociate from one another, dislike and even hate each other. Whatever happened to the idea of “united we stand?” This tactic of “divide and conquer” has been used for thousands of years and still continues to be effective because the ego continues to fall for it. But the truth remains that all of these things, in their own way, are merely forms of distraction and illusion. They keep people from focusing on the things that have actual importance and value in life. They keep the truth shrouded in mystery when it doesn’t have to be. I see them at this moment as the primary barriers to worldwide spiritual awakening.

While each of these topics could have its own article, I would like to focus on sports for this particular topic at this moment. While writing this article I was reminded that it was Super Bowl time, funny as I had forgotten all about this as I do not have television, nor do I follow any sports. You’ve got to love synchronicity.

It’s common to go into a local supermarket and hear the staff and patrons carrying on about this team or that team, and this player being better than that one. The last time I observed this I stopped for a moment and just listened. It was the only thing these people could find to talk about with one another. They struggle and ultimately fail to have anything else to say to each other. Have people really lost their ability to interact with one other to such a degree that they need sports in order to generate a topic of mutual interest? If so, things are really off track, wouldn’t you agree? I certainly don’t have a problem striking up meaningful conversation with someone, but admittedly, when the conversation turns to superficial things like sports I lose interest immediately. I just see no need to engage in a conversation and doesn’t offer any sense of vibrational uplifting value. Could you imagine if people spoke of meaningful things around the water cooler? What if sports bars turned their focus to meaningful interactions – and beer? 😉 What if their televisions played programs of Eckhart Tolle, Osho, Dr. Wayne Dyer, Marianne Williamson, or other spiritual leaders with the conversation over a couple of brews being far more significant than cheering for someone to run down a field or throw a ball through a metal ring? Wouldn’t it be amazing to see true spiritual leaders being held in high regard for the value they offer instead of people worshiping sports athletes and so-called celebrities, paying them tens of millions of dollars to provide entertaining distractions – and the worst type of role models for our children and our selves?

Here’s an important question – Why is it that so many men are capable of remembering and becoming emotionally invested in knowing all of the names, stats, injuries, and more of the players on many sports teams, yet they cannot for the life of them remember their own wedding anniversary!? And why is it that this has become acceptable? Think about what exactly this says! A man can recall every stat of every player on multiple teams, yet he cannot bring himself to remember the anniversary of the day he entered into a union with the single-most special person who is supposed to mean more to him than anyone else in the world. He cannot remember his anniversary but does he ever forget the Super Bowl, the World Series, or the Olympics? No, no he doesn’t. Does this say that he cares more about sports than his beloved wife? I think the answer is frighteningly obvious. I think the old joke of a sexy wife walking in front of the television completely undressed vying for attention during a sporting event, only to have her husband unable to notice her while motioning for her to move out-of-the-way because he can’t see the game, says it all. It’s funny and very sad) because it’s true. Not a very positive representation of a mature adult man or a healthy loving relationship is it?

But, to be completely fair, it’s no longer just the men. Many women are now following this unfortunate pattern of distraction and ego-strengthening through competitive sports as well. The world needs these strong women to direct their focus in a far more mindful manner, if they are to help lead the world into survival and avoid extinction. people need to kick the drama addiction. The rollercoaster ride of winning and being elated with losing and being pissed at the world is the addiction of sports fans. They love the drama. This form of drama serves to feed the ego and keep one’s vibration in a state of flux so no personal power can be achieved. First its up and then its down, then its up again or did it sink even lower? These emotional and energetic extremes are like a drug that gets the ego hooked. Doesn’t it reveal the truth when people are able to remember so many things that have absolutely no value in life yet there is no more room in their memory to recall the things that actually do matter? Isn’t it sad that a supposedly superior species such as human beings can have so much potential yet actively choose to throw it away for pointless distractions and a mindless existence?

It’s important to remember that any form of competitive sport strengthens the ego, it’s a simple fact, there’s no way around it. Any competitive sport that pits one person against another for any form of dominance breeds separation and egotism. That’s not to say that they don’t offer other forms of value, but their primary existence is merely that of entertainment and ego-strengthening. Entertainment is used as a form of escapism, it takes people farther away from being able to live consciously in the here and now. It causes them to waste their life and not even realize it. The same goes for the Dungeons and Dragons of sports – creating a fantasy league. Grown adults pretending to make teams of their dream players. Ummmm? It allows people time to escape their real life and immerse themselves in a distraction but in doing so, they waste precious time on pointless non-sense. This keeps your mind from focusing on anything real, anything meaningful, and it prevents your spiritual evolution.

Instead of people screaming at their television sets, getting severely pissed off over their team losing, creating “fantasy” leagues, overturning vehicles, rioting and looting, or getting into fights or even killing one another over a sporting event; wouldn’t it be incredible to engage in activities that brought everyone closer together and compassionately worked to care for the well-being of the planet? This shift from activities that cause human separation into those that generate human connection would allow the human species to fully awaken. Imagine this… Instead of people being pulled away from one another and falsely led to believe that they are different from or better than another; what if they engaged in things that allowed them to see the truth? The truth that everyone is connected, we are all one, we are all the same. That people are supposed to love and care for one another. Imagine if the world’s masses escaped the illusion of political parties and governments? What if they escaped the illusion of one religious belief system being the only right way? What if they lost interest in mind-numbing drivel that is known as celebrity gossip? And what if people were able to shift all of that passion, raw emotion, energy, and mental power that is given away so willingly to competitive sports and directed it toward living in harmony with all others? I wish right now that each of you reading this will take a moment and envision this in your mind. Please make the effort to do it. Just imagine what this amazing world could be like and how we could manifest our potential.

At some point there must be a shift in our awareness away from these meaningless, ego-strengthening, distractions back to the things in life that truly matter. Yes, I said “must.” There is no question about it and no time to waste with fluffy encouragement. We must reclaim an understanding for things that add value to our lives and the lives of others. We need to shift the focus of our priorities to those aspects of life that consciously improve our lives, our connection to one another, and a sense of peace and harmony throughout the world. We must shift our focus from sports to spirituality. From ego to essence. Just imagine if people took all the passion, interest, emotion and money that they give to sports and they were able to invest it all into a worldwide spiritual awakening. It would be enough to substantially change the world.

The numbers here are so significant that if this shift from sports for spiritual awakening were to take place it would act as a catalyst catapulting nearly the entire world population into spiritual evolution. It would be the equivalent to a worldwide spiritual tsunami of awakening! A massive wave sweeping the entire world, bathing its inhabitants in the glow of enlightenment. Imagine if right now, suddenly, everyone in the world shifted their interest from sports to spiritual awakening!

Can you imagine the world we could create if we could shift our focus from these mindless distractions and place all that energy toward personal improvement, spiritual evolution, and a sense of worldwide connection and harmony? Imagine filling stadiums with people, packing every seat, as a way to come together and share heart opening, mentally stimulating ideas that enhanced our lives and bring people closer together. What if we were able to shift the multi-billion dollar sports industry into a multi-billion dollar movement for spiritual awakening? imagine if every person around the globe placed their focus on awakening instead of sports? Violence would cease, greed would transform into giving, compassion would flourish, empires and egos would topple, awakening and well-being would become contagious infecting nearly everyone, hearts would open and connect like never before, the world would heal and happiness would reign.

Okay, so I suppose that was a thought worthy of some recognition and attention, huh? Now it must be brought into reality. Are we ready? If so, turn off the damn TV and kiss your beautiful wife! I mean really kiss her, like you actually mean it. When was the last time you did that? Get off the couch and get into your life. Open your heart to others and talk about things that truly matter. Listen to the guidance of your heart and no longer accept the brainwashing. It’s time for us to stop fearing one another and begin embracing each other and treating each other like the family that we truly are. Are you with me? I hope so because I can’t do it alone. Even so, I won’t stop trying.

#1 Outdated Parenting Belief

Hey Everyone! Robert here.

I hope your 2014 is off to a great start! I know mine is running wild already! This year of the Yang Wood Horse should prove to be a year filled with energy and potential. As always, the decision to consciously ride the horse or be dragged along behind it, is your own choice. We have the power to decide. Take the reins, leap up onto its sturdy back and ride through the year with a sense of great zealousness!

Parenting is tough to say the least. Despite the countless number of books written on the subject, there is still no parenting manual that offers any real or practical guidance for being a great parent. Most people wing it and do the best they can. I don’t profess to be anyone worthy of giving parenting advice, however, I feel it necessary to speak on this issue because of the seriousness facing us.

Today I see many young adults and middle-aged children who are the result of this parenting mistake. Like rose buds that begin to take form, hinting of their beauty and fragrance in the rainy beginning of spring, they give up without ever having bloomed at all. They hang there on the stem never opening; sagging, wilting, and eventually withering up and dying without ever having graced us with the full potential of their beauty. Vibrationally speaking, today’s young adults have very low vibrational frequencies. Not only is the frequency low, but there is barely anything there at all. Their vibrations are so low because they’re shut-down, they have given up. This needs to be of great concern to us all.

I am going to share what I feel is the greatest mistake being made by the vast majority of parents today. It is what’s preventing our young adults from blossoming into the incredible, physically and mentally healthy adults they entered into this life to become. Fair warning. I want to caution you that some may not enjoy reading this as it may hit too close to home. But, the truth is just that and I hope that upon reading this millions of eyes begin to open. This will also explain why there is such a problem with young people being so incredibly angry, violent, disrespectful, and unable to function in society. No, my goal here is not to give parenting advice, that’s not the goal of this blog. Why am I writing this then? Well, because someone needs to. Besides, this parenting mistake keeps our youth from living the grand adventure of their own lives and from developing their potential, personally and spiritually, and I feel this is unfair.

Here is the root of the mistake. The “belief” that so many parents live by and its crushing our youth – “I want my children to have it better than I did growing up.” Sounds noble enough on the face of it, but nothing is good when taken to an extreme and this idea has been taken far beyond the extreme. This is clearly seen by the constantly hovering behavior of the aptly named “helicopter parents.”

In our well-meaning desire to give our children a better life than we had, we are not allowing them to live fully and develop their own unique potential. Let’s face a fact here – most of us had it pretty damn good to begin with! Sure, I tried to make my children’s lives better than mine in various ways. My mother was an extremely heavy smoker and my brother and I hated it. That’s why I have never smoked; ever. I gave my children a smoke-free living environment as they grew up. While certain things like that are healthy enough for all involved, that philosophy is a throwback from those who lived through the World Wars and Great Depression, and it no longer applies. At least for now. When we live mindlessly, we end up repeating many outdated beliefs from past generations that no longer serve us, and they are certainly not serving our youth.

By doing everything for our children, they never develop a sense of self-pride or self-worth because they never have the opportunity (often disguised as obstacles) to come face to face with real life challenges. As soon as a challenge or life lesson presents itself, the parent jumps in and takes care of it before the young person has a chance to engage it for themselves. Even when they are faced with a challenge, they know they can’t fail because the parents are standing right behind them with a safety net just waiting to catch them. This programs them to fail and eventually just stop trying. Should the time ever come when they are faced with a challenge on their own, they completely implode, having a mental episode because they have not developed any type of coping mechanism.

Let’s peer beyond the veil of illusion shall we? While parents are well-meaning on the surface, the truth is that they keep their children dependent upon them so that they might feel some sense of purpose due to having lost their own way. This absolutely steals the young person’s identity and opportunity for personal growth. They lose the ability to take care of themselves in even the simplest of ways. It is not about the poor economy, that’s a convenient excuse, it’s about the parent’s inability to face their own life lessons and live their own life purpose. They hide behind their children using them like shields as they are too fearful to face the real issues of their own lives. The more children, the more shields. If more barriers are needed to hide behind, then they just start collecting pets and treating them like overly dependent children. Because these young people never face a challenge, they never feel what it’s like to fail or to succeed. Both are a necessary part of the life experience. Failing teaches them to get back up, dust themselves off and try again and again and again. It builds character, determination, and will-power. Through this they learn to respect themselves and that results in respecting others. Succeeding shows them what they are capable of in life, it let’s them know what they’re made of, feeling good about their accomplishments. They learn to love and respect themselves allowing them to love and respect others. To know neither is to live suspended in limbo.

There is no need to wonder why today’s youth is so lacking in respect, this is exactly why. Allowing them to enter an experience and then through their own hard work and focus, succeed in that experience, they develop a sense of self-worth and pride that carries them gracefully through life. When they are not allowed to develop this they become very frustrated and angry. Now you can see why there is so much anger and disrespect from our younger generations. Once they give up they go into survival mode, there the ego takes over and begins running their mind, making it increasingly difficult for these young adults for ever free themselves from the mental shackles of their own egoic mind.

By giving everything to our children they come to expect that everything in life is given to them. This leads to a type of functioning mental illness that is commonly referred to as “entitlement.” They never develop a sense of responsibility. Responsibility helps us to mature, to grow, to make decisions, and to embody common sense. When stripped of responsibility, people give up on life. There’s no reason to try.

Our children are meant to be in the world, and at a certain point, standing on their own two feet. They are meant to get out and find a way to support themselves and to live their own lives, having their own experiences and adventures. In this way they become valuable to themselves and they learn to value their life. This cannot happen when they are lying in their parent’s basement at 30 years old, playing video games, eating junk food, becoming obese and diabetic, and hiding from the world. This is a sign that they have given up and giving up is a terrible, torturous form of existence. We are designed to live, not merely exist. Is that what parents wanted for their children? Of course not, yet that’s exactly what is being done to them. Perhaps its time that parents snap out of their selfish haze of denial and see the truth.

Not allowing your children to experience the world, doing things for themselves, is an act of your selfish ego not one of love. Clinging to them in resistance to change and the inability to act maturely as an adult parent creates suffering in those you are trying so desperately to protect from suffering. It’s a gift to teach our children to spread their wings and fly, to set them free. It is the parent’s place to stand back and observe as this happens. This allows the parents to feel pride for a job well-done in raising their children and then they can move on with their own lives. To experience their own adventure. Parents need to grow up in order to allow their children to grow up.

I can think back and watch how this developed in society. First it was parents living vicariously through their children, pushing them to be what they had always wanted to be but never had the ambition or ability to become. This was often seen in how parents pushed their children into sporting activities. the parents scream and yell and get far more worked up than the kids ever do. Most of the time they just want to go off and play. Then parents began to cling to the identity (label) of being a parent, and because they were so unhappy with themselves and their own life, continued to keep their children close using them as a safety blanket in with they could wrap themselves and hide. By keeping their children in the house and living off them, they kept their mind’s frantically busy and their life as it was. This prolonged any sense of change that they may be forced to experience and kept them from having to come to terms with their own life. This happens when a person doesn’t like who they are and can’t stand to be alone with their Self. Such as the unhappiness of being with someone who they really don’t love and who doesn’t love them, yet they stick it out, frozen in place and unable to move forward. Not liking who they are, being married to someone other than that one special someone, and the inability to cope with making changes is at the very core of this issue that is being projected onto the youth. If you are with that one special person you are far more inclined to live your own life and encourage your children to do the same so that they too might find that same rare type of happiness that you’ve found. Isn’t that our true original intention for our children? But, how can parents possibly teach their children to find something that they themselves are too afraid to seek?

The outdated mindset that no longer serves us originated as a form of well-meaning parental protection, but has mutated to become something detrimental. This is often the case with beliefs that no longer serve the greater good of the people. Children are not being protected, they’re being sacrificed. Sacrificed so that the parents don’t have to face their own unhappiness or fears, and most parents don’t even realize that this is the reason they’re doing it. Their ego convinces them they are protecting their child from the big bad world, that they are lovingly making a better life for their kids. But this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Their ego does not allow them to see the truth that’s right before their eyes.

The best way for parents to handle this is to first accept responsibility for their own life and their own happiness. Face their own fears and grow into strong, mature adults. Be strong enough to face the truth. Parents must set themselves right and get their lives in order. Which, ideally, they should do before they had children. Then they must encourage, and by encourage I mean insist, that their children get out into the world. Get a job, have their own relationships, their own responsibilities, pay their own bills, face their own fears and challenges, and overcome obstacles for themselves in order to grow into healthy-minded adults. The simple truth is that 30 or 40-year-old immature “children” are not cute, they’re just creepy and pathetic. Maybe when parents stop making excuses for their children, the youth will stop making excuses for themselves. After all, it’s a learned behavior. Let’s break this cycle of excuses and set our children free to become the incredible beings they came here to be.

Each of us is here to live our own unique adventure and this cannot and will not happen while living off of family members, hiding in a basement or garage until your life is more than half over. Life is an adventure that’s meant to be engaged fully and enjoyed immensely. That means parents need to let their children run and when they fall down, they need to step back, suck it up, and let the child get up on their own, brushing off their own knees, whipping their own tear, and then they will begin to run and smile again after having grown just a little bit. When we interfere with this process, they learn to give up, lie on the ground screaming and kicking until someone tends to them, missing out on all of the fun of running around and playing. Sure there are tough times, but isn’t that how we learn to better appreciate the good times? Isn’t that how we grow and become strong? Without this there is no good time or bad time, it’s all just wasted time. It’s merely an existence in limbo. This life is a precious gift, the time you are given to live it is a gift, it’s not meant to be carelessly wasted or thrown away. It’s time for the youth to let go of that “Who cares!” attitude and begin to care – it’s their life and they deserve to care deeply about it, don’t you think? Don’t they deserve to bloom fully into the spectacular unique individuals they were meant to be? Wouldn’t you love to see them bloom into their full glory and share their potential with the world? As parents, don’t you think we owe it to ourselves and our children to get ourselves and our lives in order while showing them how to do the same? Stop sacrificing your children out of fear and face the truth of your life. Then encourage them to follow your example. Isn’t that how it’s supposed to be done?

Hey Everyone! Robert here!

newyear2014

Happy New Year! It is that incredible time of year when we experience the ending of one cycle and the beginning of another. As 2013 winds down and we begin gearing up for 2014, its great to begin with a celebration. Many people celebrate the ending of the old year by counting down the seconds until the new year on New Year’s Eve, we however, place our focus on celebrating on New Year’s Day as a way of welcoming the energy of the new year with excitement and open arms. That’s just us being our authentic selves and doing it our way. It’s what feels best to us. We also gear up to begin our celebration of Chinese New Year, taking that time to really connect with the attributes of the coming year according to the teachings of Feng Shui and Taoist tradition, as well as Shinto tradition.

I would like to offer a bit of guidance for all of you who enjoy improving yourself through personal and/or spiritual growth, and can’t resist setting a new year’s resolution for yourself. My goal is to help you become highly effective in achieving success with your resolutions. Here are a few important tips that I apply to my own resolutions.

1. I set one resolution for something I would like to improve upon in regards to myself (ie becoming a better person). Only one. I used to list a 3-5 things to work on, but I found it becomes too overbearing, and then it becomes nearly impossible to succeed. Be gentle with yourself and focus on one thing per year. Some of our resolutions can be pretty big items to tackle. In order to succeed its important not to get down on yourself concerning the aspect of yourself or your life that you desire to change. Instead, become excited about it. See yourself as the person you desire to be, free of whatever it is that you long to change. Pay particular attention to how great it makes you feel inside and hold onto that feeling. Consciously reward yourself when you are actively achieving your goal as you achieve various milestones. This can be something as simple as smiling to yourself in a mirror and saying “I’m doing it!” Or, it can be anything you like that allows you to acknowledge your success.

2. It’s important to understand that the human mind, especially the untrained human mind, defaults toward the negative. In addition to the one thing that I consider “negative” about myself, I also make it a point to make a “positive” resolution. This positive resolution is something that I would like to treat myself to more of in the new year. By way of example, last year my positive resolution was to make more time to enjoy swimming in the pools, relaxing in the hot tubs, and swimming in the ocean. I felt like I needed to connect more to the water in 2013 and enjoy the amenities of where we live. It’s too easy to become wrapped up in life and not make time for some of the things that drew us to our current living situation in the first place. By doing so, I swam more laps resulting in even more exercise. I soaked in the salt water hot tub after work outs which my body thoroughly appreciated and this increased my ability to relax, and I swam and played in the ocean which is always a treat. What I didn’t realize is that it also helped me to connect to fond memories of my childhood when I used to spend all day in our in ground pool in the back yard. What an unexpected gift that was! On top of that, I ended up with the opportunity to swim with my wife in a luxurious heated, saltwater pool that had music playing under the water, and swim in the ocean as a pod of dolphin played nearby, during our honeymoon. Make sure to include a fun resolution for yourself. Life is supposed to be a wonderful adventure and it’s difficult to enjoy that type of experience if you’re overly focused on beating yourself up all year-long.

3. When we improve ourselves, letting go of bad habits, addictions, or character flaws, it helps to understand the endeavor from a vibrational perspective. When you desire to improve yourself it’s about lifting yourself from a lower vibrational frequency to a higher vibrational frequency. The whole idea is to raise your vibration to that of the person you deeply desire to be. One of the most critical factors in your success is to then set your vibration to be in alignment with (ie – a match to) that of the person you desire to become. If you should keep your vibration at the lower level, you will remain in alignment with the very behavior that you are attempting to change. You cannot shed low vibrational behaviors while vibrating at a low-frequency, you must raise your vibrational frequency to that of better behavior. Lacking this understanding is why most people fail. For instance, if you made the resolution to be more compassionate and understanding of others, yet you don’t implement a practice to help you raise your vibration to a more compassionate level, then you are likely to fall right back into your old behavioral habits, if you ever manage to leave them at all. To experience success, simply find an effective practice that addresses this topic and take action. I find that when I take the time to visualize how my life might be when I succeed, it makes me feel incredible inside. Holding onto this feeling raises your vibration to the level where that type of behavior cannot exist, you simply grow (vibrate) out of it. A pretty gentle and practical way of achieving success, don’t you think?

I have had great personal success by utilizing these tips. I hope that you can find they serve you too. I no longer look upon this time of year with dread because of a resolution, instead I feel excited for the opportunity to do something good for myself – and improve myself in the process.

Don’t forget to celebrate, in whatever manner best serves you. Always celebrate safely and responsibly. May your 2014 overflow with loving people, positive growth, and personal success. Make 2014 your best year yet. Engage your life fully, live every day as an adventure filled with wonder, magic and unconditional love.

I do not own the “new year graphic” used above. I borrowed it from the internet. The owner is very talented and I appreciate their efforts.

Please join us at http://www.expansionmastery.com for additional blog posts and information updates regarding new product releases, free bonus offers and more. 2014 is going to be an exciting year at Expansionmastery.com, and I hope you’ll join us.