2012: The Year for Practical
By Corinne McLaughlin
from the heart can you reach the sky” -- Rumi
visionary--ignore those who want to hold back the future!” This was a
good approach that I and other pioneers have followed for many years.
We learned to ignore the caution and skepticism all around us in our
unending drive to innovate and initiate leading edge ideas and projects.
noticed that 2012 is calling for a different approach. Now the messages
I keep getting from life are to become more of a practical
visionary, rather than just a visionary. I’m learning to keep my feet
on the ground while my eyes are on the horizon and my heart is on fire
for a better world. I’m learning to bring heaven down to earth. I see
examples of an amazingly positive vision of a New World growing
everywhere around us today, but I’m also acutely aware of the negative
realities of the present, and I take practical steps to address these.
things are shifting in the inner dimensions of the world in 2012. My
intuition says big changes are afoot. This is the Age of Synthesis.
There is a growing collective awareness to go beyond “either/or”
dualistic thinking in every arena—and thus beyond identifying as either
a visionary or a practical person. Instead we need “both/and”
thinking—bringing vision together with practical approaches--if we want
to survive—and thrive—amidst the current karmic crises.
Practical visionaries meet real human needs and create tangible
solutions to social problems. For example, they have developed
permaculture to grow healthier food, restorative justice to reduce
crime, and socially responsible businesses that provide for the
well-being of both employees and the environment while making good
profits for shareholders. There’s now over $2.8 trillion invested with
some type of socially responsible screen.
like to say that we have two eyes for a reason—to see both the positive
and negative—future potential and current reality. Just as our brain
naturally synthesizes the input from our right eye and our left to
create greater depth perception and so help us to navigate wisely in the
world, so we need to include both future potential and current reality
to navigate wisely. If we ignore current reality, such as the financial
or political side of things, we’ll be greatly hampered in our
effectiveness. If we don’t follow up on the commitments we make or pay
careful attention to details, including administrative, financial and
legal details, we could undercut the manifestation of our wonderful
people describe big, overwhelming visions in my leadership training or
individual coaching work, I always advise them to think through the very
next steps they need to take tomorrow or next week. Small steps can
build on each other to make effective strategies. Small sequential
steps make their vision more manageable.
addition to bringing inspiration and vision through their higher energy
centers (or chakras), I encourage my clients to focus more attention in
the energy centers below their naval—their solar plexus, sacral and base
centers, which I see as their “grounding” chakras. This helps them
bring their spiritual, visionary energy down to earth and become more
practical and efficient.
and inspiration come from the spiritual worlds, and practicality comes
from the material world. In the ageless wisdom teachings, Spirit can be
seen as matter at its highest vibration, and matter can be seen Spirit
at its lowest vibration. They are both energy, but the energy is moving
at different rates of vibration. Spirit is more refined and moves
faster. Matter is denser and moves slower.
find a balance point in your heart, the point of synthesis of Spirit and
matter, the visionary and the practical, and move between them with
wisdom and grace. Practical, mundane tasks can be as equally sacred as
prayer or meditation if done with love and the right consciousness. In
fact, practical tasks can be seen as prayer in action.
you can be more practical in expressing your vision and spiritual
inspiration in 2012? What are some authentic ways that you can reach
the sky from your heart? Remember, your heart is a vessel that holds
the whole world.
is Executive Director of The Center for Visionary Leadership in
California and co-author of The Practical Visionary, Spiritual
Politics and Builders of the Dawn. The Practical Visionary,
on which this article is based, can be ordered from