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Excerpted from The Path of Transformation by Shakti Gawain. Copyright 2000 by Shakti Gawain. Excerpted by permission of New World Library.  All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. HTML and web pages copyright by SpiritSite.com.

"We must first be honest enough to acknowledge the confusing, frightening feelings we may have."

Shakti Gawain, The Path of Transformation, Part 3

As if all this weren't enough, when we look beyond our personal lives, we see even worse problems. We have wars all over the planet. Many countries are suffering from cruel, repressive governments. The Third World countries are being exploited by the industrialized nations. Economic chaos and disasters are threatening. There is a worldwide threat of terrorism. We have increasing violence in our cities, and homelessness has become a terrible problem. We have a drug epidemic that's out of control. Most frightening of all, we are in the process of destroying the natural environment upon which our lives depend.

It's unpleasant and uncomfortable to face these realities and our feelings about them, so most of us try to focus on other things. Yet, in order to have the courage to confront our personal and planetary problems, and try to solve them, we must first be honest enough to acknowledge the confusing, frightening feelings we may have and how overwhelming it all seems. The first step we must take in dealing with any challenge is to acknowledge what it is and how we feel about it. It is only through facing our fears and difficulties that we can find creative and effective solutions.

If our personal lives are so difficult, and the world is in such a mess (reconfirmed every evening on the news), why should we feel anything except despair? Why feel hopeful at all? The reason is that although this is a frightening time, it is simultaneously the most powerful time that has ever existed on this planet.

Humanity is in an ongoing process of conscious evolution. At this time, we are taking a giant step in consciousness - a great leap in our evolutionary process. It's probably the most exciting event that has ever taken place on this plane of reality. And I believe that on a soul level we have all chosen to be here at this time in order to take part in it. So we've committed ourselves to being here and doing this, we've put our hearts and souls into it, and now we're looking rather anxiously and breathlessly to see whether or not it's going to work! Somewhere, deep inside us, we know what is possible, and we're wondering if we're going to be able to manifest that. It's a big question.

I believe that the answer to that question lies in the hands of every one of us. Through our personal commitment to the process of growth and change, each one of us has the power not only to transform our own life, but to contribute tremendously to the transformation of life on our planet.

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