BY REV. TEMPLE HAYES
Peace and clarity are easy to find during a sunset meditation or an evening yoga class. But tomorrow morning when the world rushes in with its latest headline news, not to mention the daily pressures of our “to-do”
lists, we can be easily thrown off center. What matters to
us in these moments is that we are inherently connected to
The answer to nurturing that connection lies within,
in our agreement with ourselves to live principled lives.
Navigating difficult times requires a change in our
perspective and our spiritual practice. We must aim higher,
both in our personal goals and in our beliefs.
When we aim higher in consciousness, we connect with
natural laws, that body of unchanging ethical principles
that form the basis for all human conduct. We find these
universal truths in all teachings—no matter the culture or
the religion—because we are all one.
I’ve always felt that the powerful self-mastery teachings
of don Miguel Ruiz, a nagual (shaman) from a pre-Colombian Toltec lineage, walks hand in hand with
Unity principles. The language in his best-selling books—
including The Four Agreements (Amber-Allen, 1997) and
The Fifth Agreement (Amber-Allen, 2010; coauthored with
his son don José Ruiz)—is so clear and user-friendly that I
sometimes quote from it in my talks. To me, the parallels
between the five Unity principles and the five Toltec
agreements are readily apparent.
FIRST PRINCIPLE/FIFTH AGREEMENT
The first Unity principle (God is the source and creator
of all. There is no other enduring power. God is good and
present everywhere) ties in with the fifth agreement: Be
skeptical while listening.
No condition, no place or thing, ever exceeds the
presence and power of goodness. Yet so many of us were
brought up to “watch out” because someone or something
“out there” was going to do things to us or not do things
for us. These concepts develop early in our lives, and we
soon start looking for this someone or something that is
against us to show up. As a result, we often aim low instead
of high. We find enduring powers happening in our lives
like debt, relationship challenges, addiction, or an inability
to find love. We’re the ones who have made those enduring
powers so—God doesn’t have anything to do with it. God
is an energy. It’s an electrifying presence. It’s a principle
that is for us, and there simply is no one “out there” who is
not an integral part of that principle. That’s why we have
free will and free choice.