Living Life From Within-Out

By Eric Butterworth
Living Life From Within-Out

It has been said that the starting point in spiritual realization is a right understanding of the One designated as the Almighty. But in a world of such broad diversity, how can we understand unity? How can we discover the One without lapsing into a duality that implies two?

There are many definitions of God, but none quite so insightful as this: God is the sphere whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere. It is not a picture that can be drawn. In fact, it should draw the mind away from the tendency to envision an anthropomorphic being.

A sphere whose center is everywhere? Impossible! But wait: if the center is everywhere, it must be where I am. Could this be the meaning of omnipresence? A point of life and light, present everywhere as each individualized expression? If this is true, then I am the center of God. It is an audacious thought with a sacrilegious tone. And yet, can a geographical center be otherwise located in a dynamic and expanding universe? Every point in this sphere, where God is, is thus a bubbling forth of the infinite flow of life.

What is the One that we call God? It is not a One off there somewhere, ruling the universe as an absentee landlord. It is the One, the whole of things, the allness of which and in which I am an eachness. No matter what I may think I am, I am the flowing forth of the One.

I am unique and different at the surface. There can be no other “eachness” quite like me. And yet I have no existence outside of the whole. My eachness can never be separated from the allness which is God. The Greeks said, “Man know thyself.” I can only know the One as I know myself as the self-livingness of the One. But I can only really know myself when I know that I am “in the flow of life...”

The great Truth taught by the mystics of all ages is: Life is lived from within-out. This means that the whole universe is concentrated at the point where you are. More than this—you are the universe expressing as you. You are its living enterprise. It forever stands behind you with its full resources. However, the fullness of this universal support comes through you and not just to you. The most profound knowledge that you can attain is that your whole existence flows forth inexorably from a universal process, which is always from within-out.

How widespread and deep-seated is the belief that we are forever in competition with people and in conflict with the world around us. Our fears, resentment, anger, and even grief come because we feel that the instability of life in the world is a threat to our existence in it. Jesus gave the answer, “The kingdom of God is within you.” (Lk. 17:21). This is an absolutely amazing concept. …

The kingdom within is the realm of all-potentiality, all-substance, all-life, all-love, all-peace. Jesus said: “Do not be anxious about your life .... But seek first the kingdom and...all these things shall be yours as well” (Mt. 6:25, 33) In other words, get into the flow and you will receive all that you desire or need.




Eric Butterworth was the author of hundreds of essays, articles and numerous best-selling books including Spiritual EconomicsDiscover the Power Within You and The Universe Is Calling. He was a Unity minister in New York City and conducted services at Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center for more than 35 years. For more information, visit