This is one of a series of introductions that bring together two ways of describing a path that leads to the transformation of ourselves and the transformation of the world around us.
The first word in each dyad is from stages and chapters in The Golden Room writings. The second is from my brother George Kinder‘s methodology of Life Planning. (The first five are from Life Planning’s EVOKE steps, the last two, Understanding and Aloha, are from the Seven Stages of Money Maturity. George’s began working primarily with the financial industry, but Seven Stages and EVOKE both are heart-centered, spiritually grounded and used by clergy and coaches.)
If you have not read about The Golden Room Writings, these introductions will make more sense when you have. You can read about them at Introduction: The Vision Behind This Site, and More Introduction to this Site: We Need Metaphors. Here are the seven introductions in this series, listed in order, with links to them.
The Golden Room Writings and Life Planning Writings are both categories on this website, and they share these seven dyads as subcategories.
Returning/Aloha is the most important stage of the journey. It cannot happen without all the other stages, but this is the reason why we have sought and built the Golden Room into our lives. The purpose is not for us to feel the bliss of being there. The purpose, as the vision showed, is to take what we find within and deliver it to the world.
An essential part of dwelling in the Golden Room is returning to the world, living not just in our heart’s core but from it, in order to serve with whatever gifts we find there. Usually a Life Plan contributes gifts to others, whether to family, our workplace, our local community or the wider world, even if the plan is to sail solo around the world or enter a monastery. There is almost always sooner or later a gain for others in our fulfilling our Golden Room life. The calling in our deepest, truest core comes from the universe that created us and is not for ourselves alone.
We return to the world, and then return to the Golden Room and then return to the world again, until that cycle of returning is resolved in the highest nondual or integral developmental stage of consciousness, when we see that the universe and the Golden Room are one and we do not need to return because we are always at home wherever we go and whatever we do.
We will not have reached the truest, deepest core of the Golden Room until we have attained this universalizing stage of oneness with all creation. The heart’s core gives rise to a self-giving, unconditional, all-forgiving, universal love that does not differentiate between worthy or unworthy or friend or foe or this recipient or that, but loves for the sake of loving.
No matter how partial the love we find within, our task is to return with even the smallest sliver of its golden light and deliver our gifts to the part of our world where we find they are needed.
“Aloha” is where George Kinder’s Seven Stages ultimately lead. The meaning of Aloha is far more than hello or goodbye. It is a personal quality of generous-hearted lovingkindness. It takes simple joy in bestowing gifts to the world, whether random spontaneous acts or larger life works.
Aloha is a returning of blessings to others out of the knowledge and gratitude that we have been blessed by the universe to have this time on earth. It has nothing to do with a sense of obligation or self-esteem, and it may not be true Aloha if we have not mastered some degree of the Understanding Stage. True Aloha rises naturally from the heart. It blossoms when we attain freedom from inner obstacles that block us from the integrity of living in, from and for our Golden Room, the way a hyacinth blossoms after struggling up from its buried bulb through the dark earth, at last releasing its inner truth of sweet scent and beautiful hue.