Bringing Excellence Into the World Through Collaboration

Published on: December 1, 2012

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Do you see Unity at the threshold of a new relevance in the world? I do! For more than a century we have assisted individuals in their personal evolution. Now we have stepped up to a greater vision and task: to co-create a world that works for all. This is a vision of evolving humanity. How will Unity turn this vision to manifestation?

Author and Unity teacher Robert Brumet said in Birthing a Greater Reality that we have an opportunity to “make a huge impact” on conscious evolution but “we cannot and should not do this alone.” In June of 2012, we took a giant step forward in collaboration by saying yes to participating in Birth 2012. By partnering with other evolved teachers and spiritual leaders, we have expanded our limits on the “co” in co-creation. As Rev Debra Olive said in her Activation Week interview with The Shift Network, “A part of what is emerging with Birth 2012 and Unity Birth 2012 is a new era of collaboration in Unity.” By broadening our “we” space we bring our excellence into the world. But what does this collaboration look like on the local level? Perhaps our story will help.

My spiritual community, Unity of Panama City, Fla., has had the privilege of participating in the Transformation Experience (TE) Pilot Program. As part of the TE program, the third phase of our “future plan” sought a means to enhance the world. This was a daunting goal, and as lead person for this phase, I wondered what Unity of Panama City could possibly do. I was involved with the Occupy movement as an organizer, but being rather oppositional, this would not suit our spiritual community.

I was also certified as a Peace Ambassador with The Shift Network and supporter of Barbara Marx Hubbard’s Birth 2012 vision, but wasn’t daring enough to suggest collaboration. Imagine my excitement when I learned Barbara had delivered her Birth 2012 presentation at the Unity People’s Convention in Detroit and it was enthusiastically received. Surely this convergence of ideas and organizations is guided by divine consciousness.

Immediately our spiritual leader, Rev Darby Neptune, and I started a plan. In August I gave a Sunday message to inform and inspire our members regarding the Birth 2012 movement and Unity’s collaboration. This was followed that afternoon with a workshop on Birthing a New Economy, promoting conscious capitalism. Economic change is one of the spokes of Barbara’s Wheel of Co-creation listing the many systems that will need to evolve. I used my connections with the local Occupy group to promote the Sunday message and workshop that followed. We had many new faces that Sunday as well as media coverage of the afternoon workshop held in our auditorium. The workshop attracted Unitarian Universalists, League of Women Voters, ACLU and other civil and religious organizations. This diverse crowd interested in Birthing the New Economy was also invited to participate in Birth 2012.

For September, another team had organized an Interfaith Night where we had Baha’i, Buddhist, Episcopal, and Jewish representatives present 15-minute summaries of their faith traditions. This was followed by a well-received discussion of our commonalities. The audience agreed that we need to focus on our commonalities and gather more often. Each of these faiths was invited to join us in celebrating on December 22.

In October we started our fall book study event using Barbara Marx Hubbard’s book Conscious Evolution and promoted the event to social, civic and spiritual groups. Meanwhile we set up a local Birth 2012 email address, Facebook page and created flyers for distribution. We also ordered “The Beginning Is Near” bumper stickers. Our team identified 25 organizations, from yoga and meditation groups to conservationist and educational groups, to be contacted. Wherever you find cultural creatives, these are potential collaborators. As we met with each group, we encouraged them to celebrate our diversity while focusing on our commonalities. Not every group will be ready to respond, but by this effort we are living our name, Unity.

The most important aspect of this effort is we are building a partnership, not just for a one-time event, but rather a collaborative movement of conscious evolution. And who is looked upon locally as the “hub” of this social/spiritual movement? Unity. While the December 22 event is upon us, this will not end the collaboration but, as with birth, it is only the beginning of a new life. It’s our intention that this coalition will continue to nurture this new humanity to maturity. Unity is a key participant bringing much to this movement. “We are the ones we have been waiting for.” Are you ready to bring your excellence into the world by collaboration?

Steve Imhof

After decades in an evangelical ministry, Steve evolved and is now a Unity SEE (Spiritual Education and Enrichment) graduate. He is a board member at Unity of Panama City, Fla., which participated in the Transformation Experience Pilot Program and Unity Identity programs. He is also an Associate wit

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