Do you ever feel tempted to make decisions based on what others expect from you, instead of from your own truth? How did you know it when you were living in alignment with your purpose? Below is an excerpt from Wayne Dyer’s memoir, I Can See Clearly Now, a New York Times bestseller, which he wrote the year before his passing. What feelings and impressions does it bring up within you? Share in the comments below.
It’s the fall of 1987 and I have been on the road a lot these past two years doing both a hardcover and a paperback tour for my parenting book, What Do You Really Want for Your Children?
I feel that my life is taking on an entirely new purpose and direction, though I’m unHow I Found the Courage to Write My Truth able to define precisely what that is.
I receive many requests to speak at church services all across the country, and have been giving a lot of speeches in humanistically-oriented multidenominational churches for the past several years.
It seems that the messages in my books resonate with these church memberships, and the congregations are eager to attend my seminars and talks at their Sunday-morning services.
At a Unity or Religious Science church, it’s just as likely that a sermon is on the writing of Ralph Waldo Emerson, Abraham Lincoln, Buddha, or Lao-tzu as on the direct teachings of Jesus Christ.
These Christian churches emphasize spirituality and a God-realized life, rather than the more traditional religious dogma, and people from all religious persuasions are always welcome.
I’m excited to be considered a spiritual teacher. This is new for me, since I have pretty much eschewed any specific religion.
I see myself as a global person without any interest in excluding anyone.
I am honored to be giving “sermon-like” talks at church services, and to be associated with the likes of Emerson, Thoreau, Leo Buscaglia, Neville, and other transcendentalist teachers.
The more I speak at these spiritual gatherings, the more I want to write about personal and spiritual transformation.
I feel as if I am being pulled in a new direction, and I’m not the one doing the pulling. Something way bigger than little me seems to be taking over the reins of my life.
I have now published five books, all of which have been extremely successful, and my agent Artie Pine has some ideas about capitalizing on this commercial success by my writing two books that he’s certain will be very lucrative for me and for my publisher.
He suggests I write a self-help book on using my commonsense principles to be more effective at making money, and then a follow-up book telling people how to have a great sex life using the no-limit ideas I’ve previously written about.
Thanks to Dr. Ruth Westheimer’s appearances on radio and television, a new age of freer, franker talk about sex has been ushered in.
My agent and publisher both feel that we’d have runaway bestsellers if I authored books on money and sex, and all concerned would harvest a financial bonanza.
As Artie tells me, “Your publisher is willing to do a two-book deal that will make you a fortune. I have given them the idea for these books. Just say the word, and I will finalize this deal for you.”
I listen carefully to Artie’s proposal and immediately tell him that there’s no way that I am interested or willing to undertake such a proposal.
I explain that the talks I’ve been giving in spiritual gatherings for the past year have led to my fascination with the idea that individuals are capable of achieving a kind of God-realization if they change the way they think.
What I want to write is a book titled You’ll See It When You Believe It, to contrast with the more common phrase, “I’ll only believe it when I see it.”
I tell Artie that our beliefs as a people determine what we eventually see.
I am excited by this idea of writing a spiritual guide for achieving one’s own personal transformation.
These ideas have been germinating within me during this period of becoming prominent as a spiritual teacher, without my consciously doing anything to bring it about.
Artie is beside himself in frustration with me and responds in his wonderfully New York literary-agent style, “What the hell are you talking about, Wayne? I have no idea what you want to write about. Let’s just take the deal I’ve arranged for you. You’d be a fool to turn it down—it’s more money than you’ve dreamed of in your life.”
I say I’m sorry, but I can’t let money or status or anyone else tell me what to write and speak about.
I am not Dr. Ruth, and I don’t want to pretend to be interested in telling people how to make money.
I tell Artie that I will be writing my next book on the concept that believing is seeing, rather than the other way around.
William Morrow agrees to be the publisher for my next book, but they offer no advance against royalties.
Both Artie and my publisher tell me over and over again that the general public is not really interested in reading books pertaining to spirituality and higher consciousness.
They tell me that I’m wasting my time and effort, and there’s no chance that a book with such a confusing title and amorphous concepts can succeed in the big way that my previous books performed.
I am undaunted. I know what I want to write about, and I feel the presence of something Divine whispering to me that I’ve made the right choice.
I put an enormous amount of effort into the creation of You’ll See It When You Believe It, which was the first of many books that I was privileged to create in the field of spiritual nonfiction literature.
I wanted to create a book that gave specific suggestions on how to tap into the invisible part of ourselves, and how to apply the same principles that govern the universe to the running of an individual life.
I did two national book tours, and hundreds of public lectures—mostly in what were at the time called New Age churches—across the country. The audiences were so receptive that it’s clear now that there was something moving me to speak and write about spiritual awakening.
You’ll See It When You Believe It contained a message about life that the general public both in the U.S. and around the world wanted to explore. My apprenticeship in the world of self-help and psychologically oriented writing and speaking was complete.
I had been “pulled” to a new direction of teaching how to tap into something beyond the body/mind and truly create a heaven on earth.
Both Artie Pine and my publisher were mistaken. You’ll See It When You Believe It proved without a doubt that there was an audience for books about God and higher awareness in a non-religious format.
The book debuted on The New York Times bestseller list and was well received all over the world.
I didn’t know it at the time, but with the benefit of being able to look back, I see that I was living the title of that book.
I saw it all come to fruition because I first believed it.
Nothing could deter me from my vision—not even extraordinary financial gain. It is so clear to me now that the hand of God and a host of ascended masters were gently but persistently pulling me toward being a teacher of spiritual truth. Miracles were about to unfold in my life to help me stay aligned with this new direction.
Living Your Purpose
You come into this world with a dharma, a life purpose, choices to make—how do you know when you are doing what you are here to do?
You feel good.
How do you know which path to take?
Choose based on your excitement, how it makes you feel. You feel good when you are doing what you are here to do.