Holistic Living, Learning and Healing
This story is not just about our coming together, but about how awakening to a new way of thinking brought us together. While Cameron's part is concise, mine (Leah's) lays on the details. We choose to laugh about that.
Anyhow, may our story encourage you in growth, lift you in hope, and strengthen your faith.
Who was to know that after reading the first Conversations with God book, a book that touched me deeply, way back in 2009, that it would take me on a journey of self-discovery and co-creation, a journey sometimes lonely, and, many times hard. It was a complete re-evaluation of life and many of its challenges, with a goodbye to my addictive nature, and work in the film industry, one driven by ego and self-serving attitudes. My mission became one of knowing and being true to myself, to serve others by being an example, not through mere words, but by action.
Easier said than done.
It took another three years before I surrendered completely to the voice within. I had always heard and spoken with that voice, but I hadn’t always listened to its counsel. Following the lead of the Spirit, within, I was finally released from my drug and alcohol addiction. After two-years clean and sober, I began counseling and leading others toward rehabilitation and authentic life change. I realize now that we are forever evolving, learning and growing as best we can, bringing ourselves closer and closer to the love, truth, joy and peace of God.
In early 2015, I joined Humanity’s Team and the Evolution Revolution. My mission of volunteer service to Humanity's Team began just prior to the first Awakening Day, March 12, 2015, doing what I could on the 12th of each month. The next step for me was to accomplish one of my long-time dreams—an approximately one-thousand km hike, along the sparsely inhabited west coast-line of South Africa, from Port Nolloth, in the north, to Cape Agulhas, the southernmost tip of Africa. And what better way to accomplish this than to fly the flags for Humanity’s Team and an uBuntu conscious South Africa. The purpose of the hike was to bring awareness of our oneness with God, Life and each other, by handing out the "1,000 words that would change the world."
This journey was not only about the hike and message, which was mind blowing. It was about the 1,000 words that would change myself. It taught me to treat myself with Love, Respect, Compassion, Patience and Faith. It taught me to appreciate the little things we all take for granted, like water, rest, cleanliness, and one's own company. I learned to accept and receive help, support, guidance (both from people and from God), without guilt, shame or obligation. I learned to sit and walk in silence—a spiritual pilgrimage. I discovered my own truth and I now know that people are but a reflection of who and what I Am. What I saw in others, I saw in myself. What I saw in myself, I saw in others, and it was good. We are all interconnected, inter-twined. We are divine, and We Are One..."
The pilgrimage took seven-weeks and drew the attention of a Facebook friend—a fellow Evo-Revo member, from the other side of the globe, in Fresno California.
My awakening was gradual, slowly, as though from a long and pleasantly adventurous dream. My life, up until then, had been modest, on the poor side, with some hardships, but filled with love, faith signs and miracles. I had no reason to doubt God, in fact, I was a vocal and avid proclaimer of the “Truth” as set-forth by the Evangelical Christian church in the US, and I fancied myself more awake than most. I also saw myself as special, separate, and chosen. Chosen to be “saved,” whereas anyone who didn’t share my beliefs was “unsaved,” and therefore destined to an eternity of torture and punishment for their “wrong” beliefs. I had a hard time
embracing this notion, but embrace it, I did.
It wasn’t until my mid 30s that I began to second-guess my staunch opinions and question my beliefs. It began with simple questions for which I couldn’t get a straight or reasonable response. Questions like, “why is the trinity made up of a father, son, and spirit, but no mother?” The answers I got were things like, “Spooky, don’t ask such questions,” or “You’ll have to ask God when you get to Heaven.” Or sources would cite the Bible to prove the Bible, something I had often done myself, though I failed to grasp the logic. I had been raised to believe the Bible was “THE Word of God” because it said it was (which it doesn’t), and that should be enough for me to accept, in faith.
But it was no longer enough. These answers failed to satisfy my demand for logic and continuity. Why should I be afraid to question my Father for understanding? And if God spoke to people 2000+ years ago, why not now, and why not me? Was God not still present and involved in His creation? God had always spoken with me, in thoughts, dreams, synchronicities, books, including the Bible, and through other people, why would He/She(?) not answer these questions now?
Granted, there’s a lot of fear inherent in questioning one’s beliefs when those very beliefs might determine the eternal state of one’s soul. It wasn’t easy to choose to honestly seek answers, but if I wanted to be true to myself, that’s exactly what I would have to do.
It didn’t take hard theological study for the answers to begin flying my way. Through random books, movies, posts, conversations, messages… messengers and the Bible. The signs were everywhere, pointing out where to dig to find the treasures of truth that I sought, apart from the religion I had been taught.
Of course, one can’t learn book lessons without being tested by life lessons. And oh, how the lessons of Faith, Courage, Patience, Peace and Unconditional Love hounded me! The period from 2011 to 2015 was like four years of intense schooling in the study and application of Love.
It worked an enormous change in me. My perspective was transformed from a self-righteous, ego-reactive, spiritual elitist, to realizing that if God is ALL, then there is no way anyone or anything could be separated from The ALL. I began to see God in myself—the same still and quiet voice with whom I had always communicated—and I began to see God in all others too, regardless of what they called Him/Her, and regardless of the path they walked. I began learning to respond in Love rather than in fear, judgement and ego. And though my loved ones may not understand, I now live in greater Love, Peace and assurance than I ever did while holding on to that old doctrine.
During this time of spiritual change, my husband, two young children and I were living in rural Alberta, Canada, thinking life was finally getting sweeter. We had a loving family and big dreams to tend to. My 10-year marriage to Jason Pauls was the adventure, education, struggle and Love story I always dreamed of. I remember my childhood fantasies of meeting the wild, handsome, hurting, man and our Love overcoming our many issues. The issues were still there: substance addiction, bi-polar disorder, PTSD, and the legal and financial hardships that accompany such things, but our Love was true and strong, and we knew if we kept following Love/God, everything would be okay, and our dreams would come true.
As for those dreams, they were mostly mine, Jason was more of a doer than a dreamer. My vision was to start a holistic-living, self-sustaining, intentional community, that would offer hospitality, restoration and healing, and a thriving and productive artistic and ministerial community from which I could produce my books and music. I called it "Pauls' inspiration" or Pi for short. The name came from the Apostle Paul's words, "I press on toward the mark of the high calling of God, in Christ Jesus." Those words are found in Philippians 3:14 (get it? 3:14? Pi?).
Then came 2015:
January - job loss.
May - home loss and moving into a 40-year-old, 70-sq-foot motor home in preparation to return to the US; camping for the next three-and-half-months, except for that two-week jail stint in June (I was involved in a roll-over accident—all by my lonesome—in an uninsured vehicle…court fees…).
April – I had noticed a change in my mother’s thinking when we talked on the phone. Very forgetful and wandering in her speech, then the news came of her mental breakdown. The doctors have no diagnosis. She hasn’t been the same since.
Despite all these hard hits, I had to believe God was leading the way. I had been having dreams of tidal waves and river crossings—two in which Jason didn’t cross with me—so I was expecting trials, but there was always hope at the end of each dream.
In July, I read the book Conversations with God, a book that affirmed all my changes of mind and heart. Reading CWG led me to join the Evolution Revolution FB page, as way to connect with others who might share my perspective. I told a brief story of myself. Several people liked my post and commented on it, but one name on the “liked” list struck me differently. Like an electric surge, a shock of recognition, but I didn't know what it was.
Later that day, I received a private message, "Read your post Leah, understand completely. It would be a great honor to have you as a friend. Cameron - South Africa. Welcome."
I replied, “Thank you, Cameron, pleased to meet you,” accepted his friend request, and went about my life.
Late August: At the suggestion of another FB friend, I began reading the book "Peace Pilgrim." It's the story of a woman in her 50s who began walking across America in 1953, spreading the message of Peace and Unity. She continued her journey until 1981, crossing the country several times before she was killed in a head-on collision while on her way to a speaking engagement. Peace Pilgrim's story resonated with me deeply! I aspired to be just that—a pilgrim of Peace, maybe not actually walking, but while on the journey of my life.
Little did I know, meanwhile, on the opposite end of the planet, Cameron was on a cross-country journey of his own, the journey of the Soul Walker.
September: Winter was on its way, again, in Alberta. We were still there, camped out on the acreage of our dear friends and gracious hosts, the Pawliks. We had to leave before snow-fall. With no steady income since the previous December, Jason was working hard to fix a car to earn the money it would take for us to finally hit the road back to California. I had a children’s book about to be published, and our plan was to share my music and book along the way back home. We were calling it the “Paul’s Gypsy Journey,” and I was sharing the story and vision openly.
I don't remember what I was doing when the Sheriff drove up that chilled September 10th morning.
Two officers approached, a man and a woman. "Leah Pauls?" The man asked.
"What did I do now?" I joked.
"Nothing ma'am," they smiled, softly. "It's your husband, Jason Pauls, he was involved in an accident this morning. His ATV collided head-on with a school bus. Jason didn't make it."
Where does one go from there? With the Love and support of friends in Canada, we held a celebration of life service, then two-weeks later, the children and I returned to California by plane, leaving most of our belongings behind.
We moved into my parent’s home and shared a room that also served as our home-schooling classroom. Though the grief was, at times, overwhelming, the support of loved ones was abundant, and we lacked for nothing. We were even given a beautiful car by a family we didn’t know. God’s provision and continued guidance was clear and obvious.
In late October someone liked my music page. It was Cameron Kirrane. There, again, was that jolt of recognition. I decided to investigate this guy and, in so doing, discovered the Soul Walker. I liked his page and sent him a message of thanks for liking mine. That’s where our conversation began.
Two Hearts, two minds, two roads converged, and wandered on as one.
I was in no way expecting or willing to fall in Love again so soon, if ever, but God had different plans for me. The following year holds a tale that must wait to be told.
Here is a synopsis:
October 2016: After a year of communicating via face book and telephone, and discovering we shared the same heart for life and each other, the children and I flew to Johannesburg, South Africa to meet this man.
In January, 2017 we were married.
That March we birthed The Omni Foundation, NPC.
That’s what this website is all about, it is the dream we have of the legacy we choose to leave behind.
We currently reside in Mpumalanga, South Africa, where we home-school the kids, and are working toward making the Omni vision and mission a reality. Our next major step is to find and purchase land, and begin building the vision.
To learn more about what we envision, please roam our website. To keep up on our progress, you can sign up for our quarterly magazine, Omni Vision. You can also check out our gift shop where you can purchase our books and music.