While I have never had the need to change my party affiliation to another party, I have had the good sense to change my life views and practices dramatically. I have changed from a conservative, greedy money-making hound to expanding my horizons to learn many things on the road less traveled. I now understand and practice the benefits of diversity, understanding that good ideas come from a plethora of sources, and that one can learn something from everyone.

From that I have learned that knowledge is the real power. I have learned and understand the importance of making every day count, and I have access to infinite creativity to shape my world any way I please. I have learned that if I come from a servant heart, all abundance in life in every aspect will follow. I now understand and practice that relationships are more important than anything else in life, and it doesn’t matter where those relationships are – my relationship with divine source, my immediate family, my closest friends and extended family, everyone in the workplace, my customers and clients, and even those I deal with on an infrequent basis.

The bottom line, for me anyway, is that making a difference for the greater good is more powerful than all the weapons of mass destruction combined. No, in spite of my diatribe, I am not running for public office!! What I have also discovered along the way is that I am not alone in my viewpoint. There is a HUGE portion of the population of The United States and Western Europe who are thinking in the same terms as I am. Our label is “Cultural Creatives.”

Cultural Creatives, according to Wikipedia is a term coined by sociologist Paul H. Ray and psychologist Sherry Ruth Anderson to describe a large segment in Western Society that has recently developed beyond the standard paradigm of Modernists versus Traditionalists or Conservatists. The concept was presented in 2000 in their book The Cultural Creatives. How 50 Million People Are Changing the World where they claim to have found that 50 million adult Americans (slightly over one quarter of the adult population) can now be identified as belonging to this group which has not yet found its identity but is disenchanted with materialism and hedonism. There are also an estimated 93 million in Western Europe. Dr Ray calls this segment New Progressives. I personally like that label – New Progressives – better than Democrats, Republicans, Independents, Libertarians, liberals, conservatives or moderates. The words new and progressive give a meaning of vibrant, vital, current, dynamic, cutting edge and good for the future.

The Cultural Creatives care deeply about ecology and saving the planet, about relationships, peace, social justice, and about self actualization, spirituality and self-expression. Surprisingly, they are both inner-directed and socially concerned, they are intellectuals, they have money, they're activists, volunteers and contributors to good causes more than other Americans. Their impact on American life promises to be enormous, shaping a new agenda for the twenty-first century. Three Americas are struggling to define what the country should be: Traditionals, Moderns and Cultural Creatives. All different kinds of movements are converging now, with the Cultural Creatives at the core.

What makes the appearance of the Cultural Creatives especially timely today is that our civilization is in the midst of an epochal change, caught between globalization, accelerating technologies and a deteriorating planetary ecology. A creative minority can have enormous leverage to carry us into a new renaissance instead of a disastrous fall. The Cultural Creatives offers a more hopeful future, and prepares us all for a transition to a new, saner and wiser culture.

What I am also finding that old labels and their ridiculous meanings that associated people with old paradigms (liberals as mindless tree huggers, and conservatives as promoters of monopolies and making money at any cost, destroyers of the planet) don’t apply any longer. There seems to be a great awakening on the planet right now. I can now engage and not angrily argue points so much easier with people of vastly different backgrounds and viewpoints. The discussions encompass gaining knowledge and facts, trying to understand and honor the viewpoints of the other side without seeing that the people involved are on opposite sides at all. I have seen a dramatic shift in people’s consciousness to really look for solutions than just trying to win an argument. I am sure it has a lot to do with the shift in my own consciousness, and I am now only attracting those types of people into my life. The Law of Attraction and The Power of Intention is without a doubt a very powerful source that people are just starting to understand. There are certainly exceptions who remain staunch in their old labels and opinions, but for the most part those exceptions are rare. I am finding more people who are looking for answers and agree that our education systems in the US are in trouble, that our US healthcare administration is one of the worst among developed nations, that our government is corrupt, that greed on Wall Street and our Government Economic Policies borrowing trillions from China and Dubai is vastly affecting the US Economy, and yes, that Global Warming is truly a problem that will greatly and adversely affect human kind, and not just the myth of certain liberal thinkers.

At cocktail parties and corporate gatherings, at the Thanksgiving Table and other holiday events, I now engage in meaningful conversation rather than argue points. I listen more and ask lots of questions. When I get the opportunity, I pose the questions, “Do you think that Global Warming is truly a problem?’ “What do you think of the current state of affairs in access to US Healthcare?” “What do you think about going Green?” Even though I know the answers and I have strong opinions about my own answers, I choose now to remove the ego and engage rather than argue. I find that “gathering” information rather than “dumping” is a far better intellectual strategy. If I get an initial answer that is contrary to my belief, I ask more questions and more questions and more questions, to constantly understand and value the other person’s belief system. I then pose hypotheses and suggest “what if” and “do you think if perhaps…” questions to elicit their opinions, and try to subtly provoke a change in thought process. The change in that thought process always comes from the thinker, not from me. Rather than confront, I elicit from and engage the person, regardless of how different their opinions are from mine. I continue to be amazed that after every conversation, I have received at least one important nugget of information I did not have before. Of course I do run into the occasional Neanderthal, no make that Paleolithic (they haven’t even discovered fire yet) people, who are devoid of any information, and are completely argumentative in their incurable ignorance. In their presence l let them lecture for a bit while forcing myself to feel blessed and grateful for my own enlightenment. I never argue any points with them, not even to bolster my own ego and confidence, and I never voice my opinion. Rather, I silently pray for their conversion to truth and then try to move away as quickly as I can, to more peaceful ground, which is ALWAYS followed by a great sigh of relief.

Change is the second greatest fear on the planet, only followed by fear of dying, and therefore it is one of the hardest things to affect both in ourselves and certainly with other people with whom you are trying to bring a new idea. Attacking people who are resistant to change (which is the majority of people on the planet) is like trying to convince someone of a soft landing by defying gravity as you urge them to jump off a 50 story building. An attack will invariably provoke fear which leads to anger from the other person, regardless of how correct you are in your knowledge, your facts and your presentation. Engage, don’t argue, and watch the world change.

Change your mind and your life will follow!

Author's Bio: 

Harry Fini is a Life Coach in Personal Development and calls himself a Change Agent, helping people discover their own True North. He also owns and operates a business that caters to lending a helping hand to people over age 75—LifeSaver Personal Concierge Services for active older adults drowning in details. For more information about Harry view his 10 minute segment on Personal Development on youtube.com, or visit his website at PrincetonLifeSaver.com.