Seven Faces of Intention
1. The face of creativity. The first of the seven faces of intention is the creative expression of the power of intention that designed us, got us here, and created an environment that’s compatible with our needs. The power of intention has to be creative or nothing would come into existence. It seems to me that this is an irrefutable truth about intention/spirit, because its purpose is to bring life into existence in a suitable environment. Why do I conclude that the life-giving power of intention intends us to have life, and have it in increasing abundance? Because, if the opposite were true, life as we know it couldn’t come into form.
The very fact that we can breathe and experience life is proof to me that the nature of the life-giving Spirit is creative at its core. This may seem obvious to you, or in fact it may appear confusing, or even irrelevant. But what is clear is: You are here in your physical body; there was a time when you were an embryo, before that a seed, and before that formless energy. That formless energy contained intention, which brought you from no where to now here. At the very highest levels of awareness, intention started you on a path toward your destiny. The face of creativity intends you toward continued creativity to create and co-create anything that you direct your power of intention toward. Creative energy is a part of you; it originates in the life-giving Spirit that intends you.
2. The face of kindness. Any power that has, as its inherent nature, the need to create and convert energy into physical form must also be a kindly power. Again, I’m deducing this from the opposite. If the all-giving power of intention had at its core the desire to be unkind, malevolent, or hurtful, then creation itself would be impossible. The moment unkind energy became form, the lifegiving Spirit would be destroyed. Instead, the power of intention has a face of kindness. It is kind energy intending what it’s creating to flourish and grow, and to be happy and fulfilled. Our existence is proof to me of the kindness of intention. Choosing to be kind is a choice to have the power of intention active in your life.
The positive effect of kindness on the immune system and on the increased production of serotonin in the brain has been proven in research studies. Serotonin is a naturally occurring substance in the body that makes us feel more comfortable, peaceful, and even blissful. In fact, the role of most antidepressants is to stimulate the production of serotonin chemically, helping to ease depression. Research has shown that a simple act of kindness directed toward another improves the functioning of the immune system and stimulates the production of serotonin in both the recipient of the kindness and the person extending the kindness. Even more amazing is that persons observing the act of kindness have similar beneficial results. Imagine this! Kindness extended, received, or observed beneficially impacts the physical health and feelings of everyone involved! Both the face of kindness and the face of creativity are smiling here.
When you’re unkind, you’re blocking the face of kindness. You’re moving away from the power of intention. No matter whether you call it God, Spirit, Source, or intention, be aware that unkind thoughts weaken, and kind thoughts strengthen, your connection. Creativity and kindness are two of the seven faces of intention.
3. The face of love. The third of the seven faces of intention is the face of love. That there’s a life-giving nature inherent in the power of intention is an irrefutable conclusion. What would we name this quality that encourages, enhances, and supports all of life, if not love? It’s the prime moving power of the Universal Spirit of intent. As Ralph Waldo Emerson put it: “Love is our highest word and the synonym for God.”
The energy field of intention is pure love resulting in a nurturing and totally cooperative environment. Judgment, anger, hate, fear, or prejudice won’t thrive here. So, were we able to actually see this field, we’d see creativity and kindness in an endless field of love. We entered the physical world of boundaries and beginnings through the universal force field of pure love. This face of intention that is an expression of love wishes only for us to flourish and grow, and become all that we’re capable of becoming. When we’re not in harmony with the energy of love, we’ve moved away from intention and weakened our ability to activate intention through the expression of love. For example, if you aren’t doing what you love and loving what you do, your power of intention is weakened. You attract into your life more of the dissatisfaction that isn’t the face of love. Consequently, more of what you don’t love will appear in your life.
Thoughts and emotions are pure energy; some higher and faster than others. When higher energies occupy the same field as lower energies, the lower energies convert to higher energies. A simple example of this is a darkened room that has lower energy than a room bathed in light. Since light moves faster than non-light, when a candle is brought into a dark room, the darkness not only dissolves and disappears, but it seems magically converted into light. The same is true of love, which is a higher/faster energy than the energy of hate.
St. Francis, in his famous prayer, beseeches God: “Where there is hatred, let me sow love.” What he is seeking is the power to dissolve and ultimately convert hate to the energy of love. Hate converts to love when the energy of love is in its presence. This is true for you, too. Hate, directed toward yourself or others, can be converted to the life-giving, love-granting life force of intention. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin put it this way: “The conclusion is always the same: Love is the most powerful and still the most unknown energy of the world.”
4. The face of beauty. The fourth of my seven faces of intention is the face of beauty. What else could a creative, kind, and loving expression be, other than beautiful? Why would the organizing intelligence of intention ever elect to manifest into form anything that’s repugnant to itself? Obviously, it wouldn’t. So we can conclude that the nature of intention has an eternal interaction of love and beauty, and add the expression of beauty to the face of a creative, kind, loving power of intention.
John Keats, the brilliant young romantic poet, concludes his Ode on a Grecian Urn with: “’Beauty is truth, truth beauty,’ that is all/ Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.” Obviously truth exists in the creation of everything. It’s true that it shows up here in form. It’s now here in a form that’s an expression of the invisible creative power. So, I agree with Keats that we need to silently know that truth and beauty are one and the same. Out of the truth of the originating spirit in an expression of the power of intention comes truth as beauty. This knowing leads to valuable insights in relation to exercising your individual will, imagination, and intuition.
In order to grasp the significance of beauty as one of the faces of intention, remember this: Beautiful thoughts build a beautiful soul. As you become receptive to seeing and feeling beauty around you, you’re becoming attuned to the creative power of intention within everything in the natural world, including yourself. By choosing to see beauty in everything, even a person who was born into poverty and ignorance will be able to experience the power of intention. Seeking beauty in the worst of circumstances with individual intent connects one to the power of intention. It works. It has to work. The face of beauty is always present, even where others see non-beauty.
I was deeply honored to be on a panel with Viktor Frankl in 1978 in Vienna, Austria. I strongly recollect that he shared with me and the audience his assertion that it’s the ability to see beauty in all of life’s circumstances that gives our lives meaning. In his book Man’s Search for Meaning, he describes a bowl of filthy water with a fish head floating in it, given to him by his Nazi captors in a concentration camp during WWII. He trained himself to see beauty in this meal, rather than focus on the horror of it. He attributed his ability to see beauty anywhere as a vital factor in surviving those horrific camps. He reminds us that if we focus on what’s ugly, we attract more ugliness into our thoughts, and then into our emotions, and ultimately into our lives. By choosing to hang on to one’s corner of freedom even in the worst situations, we can process our world with the energy of appreciation and beauty, and create an opportunity to transcend our circumstances.
I love the way Mother Teresa described this quality when she was asked, “What do you do every day in the streets of Calcutta at your mission?” She responded, “Every day I see Jesus Christ in all of his distressing disguises.”
5. The face of expansion. The elemental nature of life is to increase and seek more and more expression. If we could sharply focus on the faces of intention, we’d be startled. I imagine that one of the faces we’d see is a continuously expanding expression of the power of intention. The nature of this creative spirit is always operating so as to expand. Spirit is a forming power. It has the principle of increase, meaning that life continues to expand toward more life. Life as we know it originates from formless intention. Therefore, one of the faces of intention looks like something that’s eternally evolving. It might look like a tiny speck in a continuous state of duplicating itself, and then enlarging itself, and then moving forward, all the while continuing its expansion and expression.
This is precisely what’s happening in our physical world. This fifth face of intention takes the form of what is expressing it. It can be no other way, for if this ever-expanding force disliked itself or felt unconnected, it could only destroy itself. But it doesn’t work that way. The power of intention manifests as an expression of expanding creativity, kindness, love, and beauty. By establishing your personal relation to this face of intention, you expand your life through the power of intention, which was, is, and always will be, a component of this originating intention. The power of intention is the power to expand and increase all aspects of your life. No exceptions! It’s the nature of intention to be in a state of increased expression, so it’s true for you, too.
The only proviso to this forward movement of intention is to cooperate with it everywhere and allow this spirit of increase to express itself through you and for you, and for everyone you encounter. Then you will have no worry or anxiety. Trust the face of expansion and do what you do because you’re loving what you do and doing what you love. Know that expansive, beneficial results are the only possibilities.
6. The face of unlimited abundance. This sixth face of intention is an expression of something that has no boundaries, is everywhere at once, and is endlessly abundant. It’s not just huge, it never stops. This marvelous gift of abundance is what you were created from. Thus you too share this in the expression of your life. You’re actually fulfilling the law of abundance. These gifts are given freely and fully to you just as the air, the sun, the water, and the atmosphere are provided in unlimited abundance for you.
From the time of your earliest memories, you probably were taught to think in terms of limitations. My property starts here. Yours over there. So we build fences to mark our boundaries. But ancient explorers gave us an awareness of the world as potentially endless. Even more ancient astronomers pushed back our beliefs about an immense dome-shaped ceiling covering the earth. We’ve learned about galaxies that are measured in the distance light travels in a year. Science books that are only two years old are outdated. Athletic records that supposedly demonstrated the limits of our physical prowess are shattered with amazing regularity.
What all this means is that there are no limits to our potential as people, as collective entities, and as individuals. This is largely true because we emanate from the unlimited abundance of intention. If the face of the power of intention is unlimited abundance, then we can know that our potential for manifestation and attracting anything into our lives is the same. The face of abundance has absolutely no limits. Imagine the vastness of the resources from which all objects are created. Then consider the one resource that stands above all others. This would be your mind and the collective mind of humankind. Where does your mind begin and end? What are its boundaries? Where is it located? More important, where is it not located? Is it born with you, or is it present before your conception? Does it die with you? What color is it? What shape? The answers are in the phrase unlimited abundance. You were created from this very same unlimited abundance. The power of intention is everywhere. It is what allows everything to manifest, to increase, and to supply infinitely.
Know that you’re connected to this life force and that you share it with everyone and all that you perceive to be missing. Open to the expression of the face of unlimited abundance, and you’ll be co-creating your life as you’d like it to be. As is so often true, the poets can express in a few short words what seems so difficult for us to grasp. Here is Walt Whitman speaking to us in Song of Myself. As you read these lines, substitute the face of endless abundance for God to gain a flavor of what the power of intention is.
I hear and behold God in every object, yet understand
God not in the least…
I see something of God each hour of the twenty-four,
and each moment then,
In the faces of men and women I see God, and
in my own face in the glass;
I find letters from God dropt in the street,
and every one is signed by God’s name,
And I leave them where they are, for I know
that whereso’er I go
Others will punctually come forever and ever.
You don’t have to have an intellectual understanding. It’s enough to silently know and proceed to live with your awareness of this face of endless abundance.
7. The face of receptivity. This is how I imagine the seventh face, the receptive face of intention. It’s simply receptive to all. No one and no thing is rejected by the receptive face of intention. It welcomes everyone and every living thing, without judgment—never granting the power of intention to some and withholding it from others. The receptive face of intention means to me that all of nature is waiting to be called into action. We only need to be willing to recognize and receive. Intention can’t respond to you if you fail to recognize it. If you see chance and coincidence governing your life and the world, then the universal mind of intention will appear to you as nothing but an amalgamation of forces devoid of any order or power.
Simply put, to be unreceptive is to deny yourself access to the power of intention. In order to utilize the all-inclusive receptivity of intention, you must produce within yourself an intelligence equal in affinity to the universal mind itself. You must not only become receptive to having guidance available to you to manifest your human intentions, but you must be receptive to giving this energy back to the world. As I’ve said many times in speeches and earlier writings, your job is not to say how, it’s to say yes! Yes, I’m willing. Yes, I know that the power of intention is universal. It’s denied to no one.
The face of receptivity smiles on me, as what I need flows to me from the Source, and the Source is receptive to my tapping in to it to co-create books, speeches, videos, audios, and anything else that I’ve been fortunate enough to have on my résumé. By being receptive, I’m in harmony with the power of intention of the universal creative force. This works in so many different ways. You’ll see the right people magically appearing in your life; your body healing; and if it’s something that you want, you’ll even discover yourself becoming a better dancer, card player, or athlete! The field of intention allows everything to emanate into form, and its unlimited potential is built into all that has manifested even before its initial birth pangs were being expressed.