THE BIONIC WOMAN LOVES OUR HUMAN POTENTIAL
By Liz Sterling
Photographer Gor Megaera
Jingling bells captured my attention. It was a sweet sound; oft, ethereal, gentle. I could not imagine what produced that jangling sound while I was checking into a hotel in Colorado as a media guest for a conference on Energy Psychology. Lindsay Wagner was scheduled as one of the keynotes. We arranged to meet in her suite for an interview. I had a few hours to settle in. The bells began again, this time coming closer. And then, as if by internal instruction, I looked directly into the eyes of the Bionic Woman. Lindsay Wagner was just as I remembered Jaime Sommers to be; powerful yet gentle, penetrating and grounded, firm and resilient. She was so present that I lost all my thoughts for a moment and just stared into her beautiful, loving eyes.
I know this sounds like a page from a book or a scene from a movie but this is truly what I experienced upon first meeting Lindsay Wagner. Turns out she was jingling and jangling – the bells hung from her purse and called my attention to the moment. As the events of the day unfolded, there were many moments that reinforced the power of coming into now. Eckhart Tolle may have written and spoken about the now moments and the power that is inherent in the moment, but experiencing it is another story. Lindsay Wagner, the former Hollywood star is exploring a whole other kind of strength and power – it's called inner strength and innate power. It comes from our innate human potential and we can all access it…now!
THE BIONIC WOMAN'S TRUE POWER
Ever since she was a young girl, Wagner has been fascinated by the possibilities of the mind and soul. “I wanted to be a psychologist,” she told me, “but was dyslexic, so I couldn't get through college.” Wagner makes little distinction between her life as an actress, advocate, mother, humanitarian and author. What unites these various parts is a commitment through her work and her personal life to advancing human potential. Even early in her career, her use of media as a way to communicate ideas to help people in their personal process is demonstrated in so many of her films. In Shattered Dreams she approached the topic of spousal abuse and domestic violence. Lindsay has also explored the complexities of terrorism, child sexual abuse, the moral dilemma regarding capital punishment and the personal battle between naturopathic and allopathic healthcare. Wagner lit up the television world in her 30s in a series of television dramas, miniseries, some 40 made-for-TV movies, specials and documentaries and 10 feature films, including 1973's The Paper Chase with John Houseman and Nighthawks with Sylvester Stallone in 1981. Yet anyone who
watched TV between 1976 and 1978 knows it was The Bionic Woman, about a tennis pro empowered by experimental medical implants, that sparked her breakthrough to become a household name of good fame. She won an Emmy for the role in 1977. Television was like a playground for Wagner and her role as the Bionic Woman gave her great strength in the industry to do issue oriented movies. During the 1970s, Lindsay confided, she persuaded producers to make movies about taboo subjects such as child abuse, racial integration and women's issues to help viewers examine how such issues affected their lives. She wanted to help people transcend trauma, not just live through it.
Wagner watched the television industry erode into an endless stream of sex, violence and programming that spoke to the lowest common denominator with the introduction of cable television. Sensationalism got revved up and reality shows proliferated. Lindsay's influence fell on deaf ears and she extricated herself from an industry that no longer brought her fulfillment. She decided to take time out and began studying Eastern and Western spiritual-healing modalities. In 2001, she became involved with a program in the Los Angeles County Jail system that helped domestic violence offenders reconnect with their families. In 2004 she cofounded “Peacemakers Community,” a nonprofit organization that offers families and individuals more constructive and peaceful ways of relating to oneself in order to help end the cycle of family violence. She also authored two books: a best-selling vegetarian life-style cookbook entitled The High Road to Health and a book on acupressure, Lindsay Wagner's New Beauty: The Acupressure Facelift. “A new life started developing,” she said. After two years away from the entertainment industry, she asked herself if it was time to go back. The answer was no to the past and yes to a future that was just beginning to reveal itself. Wagner continued her self-directed studies; receiving guidance from people she calls her team of angels. “I met some extraordinary teachers and counselors.” Lindsay became a practitioner in energy psychology, traveled to India to continue her study of spiritual growth and, lucky for us, she shares her insights, awareness and hope for our changing world.
BEST ACTRESS EMMY
Wagner was born in Los Angeles, California. She worked as a model in Los Angeles and gained some television experience by appearing as a hostess in Playboy After Dark. However, it was not until she contacted a friend at Universal Studios and was cast in a small part in Marcus Welby, M.D. that her acting career took off. Her appearances helped her win roles in the films Two People and The Paper Chase. Wagner also had a recurring guest role in The Rockford Files.
In 1975, Wagner then played Jaime Sommers, a former tennis pro who was the childhood sweetheart of Six Million Dollar Man, Steve Austin (played by Lee Majors). In a two-part episode entitled “The Bionic Woman,” Jaime was critically injured in a skydiving accident and, at Steve's request, she was equipped with bionic limbs similar to his own (with the exception of his bionic eye, as Jaime was equipped with a bionic ear instead). Unfortunately, Jaime's body rejected her new bionics and she later died.
This was intended to be Wagner's last role under her Universal contract, but public response to the character was so overwhelming that Jaime was “brought back to life” with her own spin-off series, The Bionic Woman (it was discovered that Jaime hadn't really died but had been put into cryogenic suspension until she could be cured). Like Steve, Jaime became an agent for the U.S. Government agency, the O.S.I., though, suffering from amnesia, she could not remember her love for Steve. However, the two would team up for several crossover episodes throughout the series' runs. The role earned Wagner an Emmy Award for “Best Actress in a Dramatic Role” in 1977.
THE POWER OF PROGRAMMING
“We are in a paradigm shift on a collective level,” Wagner shares, “because so much has changed in the world in our lifetime. Just think about flying on jetliners. It was a novelty when I was a child and a convenience for only the very few. Today, we are living in the midst of a great and powerful shift. I remember sitting and watching the moon landing and my grandmother grew up in a covered wagon. So my kids laugh when I make certain comments about how life was without cell phones and Blackberry's. Our awareness of everybody else in the world and our human collective is right in our face – it is in the forefront of our awareness. It is impossible to survive this massive paradigm shift without now recognizing our connectedness...and how we are part of something much larger. We can no longer think of ourselves as isolated and alone. We are truly connected.”
So how does that translate to anything practical, I query. Wagner tells me, “we must simply acknowledge that we are far more programmed than we ever realized. I have come to recognize,” she continues, “that there is a pure creative source – a place that is and represents our human potential and this unlimited source is accessible to us all. Some call it universal intelligence. It allows us to know intuitively what to do in the moment.” This intelligence, I learn, is our greatest resource and we do not need to be bionic to use it. It is oftentimes called intuition. The only thing we need to do is slow down enough so we can be in the moment, experience spontaneity, hear more clearly and be guided intuitively.
THOUGHTS ARE THINGS, THINK GRATITUDE
And even though I was inspired by what I heard Lindsay say, I simultaneously was thinking about my friends who have been hard hit by the financial and economic crisis. I asked her to help me – help them. “In the wake of the horrible financial crisis and of so many people losing their jobs,” Wagner notes, “it is important for us, right now, to see through fresh eyes. I believe we are being asked to let go of how things used to be and to re-examine our beliefs and the thoughts we think. However we once felt things should be – used to be – all that is now changing.
My first tip for your readers is to wake up to your programming. If you think things are good or bad, you set up a judgment about how things are. Instead, look at it as a negative act and then, it's time to shift. Every day, as many times as you can remind yourself – think about something you can be grateful for. The practice of gratitude will keep your mind open to the flow of what will open your heart. Shifting from problems to possibilities, from suffering to gratitude, will change the energy in your body and bring about a different manifestation in your life. Practice gratitude for all you have. Notice if you are pointing your finger out there. If you find yourself asking, how did I end up in this situation, you are beginning to become accountable. No one does this to you. We do most everything to ourselves. Every time you judge someone else, you limit your ability to see how you participated and therefore, you limit your ability to be more empowered for the future. Judgment is a negative act and when you do it – stop. As we awaken to our connectedness and openness – to the creative source – we notice that so much is there for us. Use gratitude, nonjudgment and compassion and you immediately shift the energy in your body and bring about a change. Every aspect of our lives will benefit from a shift in perspective."
"In my healing workshops I use kinesiology to illustrate how to create greater health in our lives. Everything has a resonance and the positive ones give us life. It strengthens our immune system and is good for our emotional well being. The most important single factor that influences our well being is our thoughts. When you are thinking about what someone did to you and you have a problem and hold resentment, your body and emotional well being is affected. The matrix of programming is so complex that worrying about our problems is the natural thing to do. The truth is, worrying about our problems and struggles makes us sicker. The worry and fear is our programming. Let's use the example of the financial crisis. What's happening? A lot of people are thinking ‘I don't have the money I need for fill-inthe- blank.' These are learned responses. It produces a wave of energy that creates a conditioned pattern of programming and produces more fear, anxiety and worry. Instead, shift the worry to gratitude or shift worry to any thought that will produce a higher energy in your body. I will be the first to tell you that worry will not produce happiness. Creativity and awareness can only enter into our minds through the positive use of gratitude, compassion, joy and peace to activate the innate potential that lives within each and everyone who lives and breathes on this earth, at this time.”
How much you believe or buy into is based on the ideas of who we think we are and what we believe happiness to be about. It is the identification with ideas that makes it so difficult to move into a new paradigm. So if you find yourself in a negative thought program, say, ‘That's not me!' That is the program. The goal is to shift from the fear patterns to a new mantra that will produce a wave of energy that uplifts your thoughts and your beliefs. Step back. Stop identifying with the thoughts and say, ‘That's not me. That's not me. That is just a thought.' In the past, we've used a lot of different verbiage, especially the term unconditional love. Lindsay prefers to use “causeless love” which is always present. “I have learned,” she concludes, “that we cannot and do not get love. We are love!”
Lindsay believes that spiritual and psychological approaches are tools to help heal us from abuses of the past and to help us live with the perplexities of our changing world. Helping oneself is way more powerful than hoping someone can do it for you – or hoping that you can do it for someone else.
Lindsay Wagner recommends using the following Invocation/Affirmation anytime, day or night…preferably both and throughout the day for true wellness.
“I open to oneness to causeless peace, joy, creativity and health and unconditional love. I am grateful, I am grateful, I am grateful.”
Gratitude Practice, right now, for even a few seconds:
State: What you are grateful for in this moment. Think of something – it can be something small, like a cloud, an energy bar, a good cup of coffee this morning – and allow the gratitude to wash over you. Feel from deep within yourself and now…go ahead…and set yourself free.
Wagner now leads seminars entitled “Quiet the Mind & Open the Heart,” at conference centers across North America and Europe. She says that our perception of any life circumstance creates our experience more than the circumstance itself. Her programs can be a catalyst to break through old undesirable patterns, allowing the natural joy from within to emerge in our family dynamics, intimate relationships, parenting, friendships and in our workplace. As we sat on her bed in her hotel suite, Lindsay shared a number of techniques with me and truly brought about a shift in my posture, peace in my heart and a quieter mind. Her commitment to her work and her mission is unparalleled by the teachers of today.