REVERENCE

REVERENCE

excerpted from ABRACADABRA! A Manual for Making Dreams Come True, Part 3, Chapter 13

By Elena Greco

Image by Prateek Gautam on Unsplash

Typical reading time: 4 minutes

April 28, 2024

The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious.
It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of true art and true science
.
~ Albert Einstein

The Importance of Reverence in Manifesting Dreams

An essential element to manifesting is elevating your Intention to the level of the sacred. I mean that you bring reverence to your project. You might consider your Intention Board an altar and doing the work of your Plan to be worship. Your Intention has to be something worth sacrificing some time and energy for if you hope to manifest it.

Dictionary.com indicates that reverence is “a feeling or attitude of deep respect tinged with awe.” Robert C. Roberts in Emotions: An essay in aid of moral psychology (New York: Cambridge University Press, p. 268) sees reverence as “a humbling of the self in respectful recognition of something perceived to be greater than the self.”

Reverence also means we serve the creative impulse from a position of surrender, rather than from a position of ego, from a “humbling the self,” as Roberts puts it.

Robert C. Solomon (2002, Spirituality for the Skeptic: The Thoughtful Love of Life, New York: Oxford University Press) describes awe as passive, but reverence as active, noting that the feeling of awe (i.e., becoming awestruck) implies paralysis, whereas “feelings of reverence are associated more with active engagement and responsibility toward that which one reveres.”

When we experience the sublime work of art that makes us stop—stop breathing, stop thinking, stop wanting—that is the unmistakable feeling of awe. Reverence usually follows on the heels of awe.

I heartily agree with Solomon that reverence is active. Perhaps even more important than to “humble the self” in the face of the sacred work of our Intention, I believe, is to embrace our responsibility to do that work and that we give ourselves completely to that work.

There is also an element of respect in reverence—respect for the object of our reverence, as well as respect for that part of ourselves that we are giving to the work.

When we enter a church or temple or cathedral that has been used for decades to house the worship of devoted people, what we feel is the accumulation of years of reverence. We feel humbled by the palpable spirit of the devotion and reverence of worshippers that has built up over the centuries. And that feeling that some of us feel when we enter such an establishment is reverence.

I included reverence in the chapter about defeating the Gremlin’s tricks as an antidote to arrogance, a sneaky trick of the Gremlin. When you feel reverence toward your project, it is impossible to simultaneously feel arrogant, because revering something higher than yourself automatically transcends ego. Since arrogance usually results in inauthentic creative work, and ultimately makes us less successful at manifesting, it’s an important Gremlin to defeat. That’s an equally important reason for cultivating reverence toward our work.

Reverence, I believe, is a primal urge in us to honor humanity itself and its higher manifestation. When we feel the urge to protect a child who is being abused, to help an elderly person who has fallen, that is our instinct to honor life. That is the reverence I believe we should feel for the sacred work of manifesting our dreams.

We tend to think our individual dreams don’t measure up to the greatness of those we admire. But who are we to judge? Isn’t it arrogant to assume that we’re a good judge of our own dreams? Perhaps it’s good to cultivate a feeling of reverence for our own dreams.

Surrender

An important element of reverence is surrender. When we put aside our small selves in service to, or in recognition of, something greater, that is surrender.

Surrender does not mean letting another person control you or that you are giving up your own autonomy; rather, it means choosing to open to the guidance of something higher than your usual everyday self, however you perceive that. If you find that you have trouble surrendering, or if you can’t find something higher that you feel comfortable surrendering to, then try just surrendering to your own highest innate wisdom. You might also surrender to your Intention itself and see where that takes you. Refusal to surrender is an aspect of ego, and of arrogance, and, as we discussed earlier in the book, bringing ego to our work results in inauthenticity.

Surrendering to the work of manifesting our Intention in a way that we focus our energy and thoughts toward it instead of our ego-ish desires leaves us better able to hear and act on the impulses and ideas of our higher self, the part of us that is closer to what we truly are.

Serving the Muse

This is the other secret that real artists know and wannabe writers don’t. When we sit down each day and do our work, power concentrates around us. The Muse takes note of our dedication. … When we sit down and work, we become like a magnetized rod that attracts iron filings. Ideas come. Insights accrete.
~ Steven Pressfield, from THE WAR OF ART

You might have heard something from creative artists about serving the muse. What does that mean, exactly?

The muse simply refers to a source of inspiration for our creative work. Your muse can have a spiritual connotation for you, or it can be something as simple as your cat! It might also be a piece of music or a picture of someone you admire greatly. You might sense your muse as an unseen helper.

Perhaps the best muse might be your Higher Self, whatever that term means to you. Truly serving the muse means surrendering to that source of inspiration with a feeling of reverence.

It helps to have something greater than your daily self to look to for inspiration. I suggest that if you currently don’t have something that gives you the feeling of reverence, look to see what consistently moves or inspires you. Then make it concrete for yourself using an image or words so that you can use that to give you strength when manifesting your dream seems too arduous or even impossible. It helps to have something tangible, rather than just an idea, something that reminds you of that ideal or inspiration. It could be a picture of the person or thing that inspires you, a small statue that represents your feeling of reverence or dedication, or really whatever gives you a feeling of love or awe.

Assignment

1. Does the work of manifesting your dreams feel sacred to you? If not, why do you think that it doesn’t? List the reasons you don’t believe this work is sacred or worthy of reverence. Then see if you can come up with rebuttal statements for that negative self-talk or belief.

2. How can you bring reverence into your work with your Intention or make the manifesting of it feel like “sacred” work to you? Do you see your Intention as being something that leads you to something higher? Or does it feel as if it is simply a manifestation of ego? If the latter, is there a way to reframe it so that it becomes something sacred to you, something you can commit to?


To learn more about manifesting your dreams, creating the Intention Board, using the IDEA™ and more, read ABRACADABRA! A Manual for Making Dreams Come True, now available on Amazon Kindle (other formats will be released this fall).

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