On September 23, 1983, I was walking across the bridge at King Farouk’s Palace in Alexandria, Egypt on the Mediterranean Sea contemplating my life. Exhausted from managing my personal, political, and business life, I was struggling on the edge feeling overwhelmed and fatigued and disillusioned with the drive to succeed. I had achieved great outer world success, but my inner world lacked meaning and feelings of emptiness intensified year after year.
Suddenly, in the middle of the bridge, I had a mystical experience. The short message: I was to transform my life. I was terrified and excited. With a leap of faith, I made a commitment to follow my inner voice, that connection that each of us have to a divine power within. For years, I have been intrigued with and studied ancient wisdom and believed I could access the wisdom of the ancient mystery schools. Upon returning to San Francisco, to my surprise, I began accessing inner wisdom which I immediately applied to every aspect of my life. Every month, I felt like the Phoenix Rising—that I was constantly rising out of the ashes and experiencing rebirth. There were hundreds of moments when I didn’t know if I had the courage to persevere resolving one crisis after another. I dug deeper. For eight years, I combined a practical, objective strategy with the subjective, spiritual insight that I was receiving to create a system for personal transformation.
As the process matured, it developed into an understanding that Nine Principles form a sequential path for permanent change, resolving conflict and crises, solving life challenges, healing, and spiritual growth. I developed the Edge Transformational Program and then, for over 20 years, I taught thousands of individuals how to transform both their personal and professional lives, create meaning, focus, direction, and balance, and acquire the inner resources to be shielded from chaos and crises in the world. As a Transformational Strategist, I facilitated the turnaround of hundreds of businesses and organizations in times of crisis and transition. I self published two books which my clients have used to continue the transformation process.
Then in 2010, the World Affairs Council (WAC), in my hometown of Peoria Illinois, co-sponsored a conference on the Lebanese. Since over 6000 Lebanese live in the area and have owned hundreds of businesses and have held business, political and non-profit leadership positions for decades, a three day educational and cultural event was planned. My personal Lebanese story began in 1886 when my paternal great grandfather, Anthony LaHood left Aytou, a small village buried in the mountains of Lebanon, to emigrate to America and settle in Peoria. Then my maternal great grandfather, Faddoul Khoury emigrated. Over a hundred years later, the Aytou Lebanese were thriving having built successful lives for themselves and their families while laying a solid foundation of prosperity from one generation to another.
I was asked to speak at the conference on the success of the Lebanese and address two questions: Why did the Lebanese, who emigrated to America, succeed so fast? Why did they assimilate smoother and faster than some other ethnic group into the culture? Honestly, I didn’t think we had succeeded or assimilated faster than other ethnic groups but members of the WAC thought otherwise. I was intrigued! I was challenged to conduct extensive research. So like a detective, I set out to unravel the mystery of my ancestors, the Phoenicians, the ancient mariners who lived in Lebanon and eventually throughout the Eastern and Western Mediterranean. But, I wondered, “What ancient wisdom would I uncover?”
Two months later, I discovered that over the last 30 years historians and archeologists have reconstructed a new image of this unique society. The Phoenicians lived by Seven Principles—the Phoenician Blueprint—and they left the world an earthshaking legacy, a visionary model for the governance of any society. They were brilliant diplomats avoiding conflict, resolving conflict, and living in peace for 3000 years, unlike any other society in ancient time, until the Phoenicians living in Carthage violated two of the principles. Understanding the Blueprint combined with understanding the process of transformation and how the mind works had solved the mystery as to why the Lebanese succeed and assimilate fast into any culture. But there is far more to the story.
We are going to explore these Seven Principles and learn how the ancients led prosperous, peaceful lives century after century. We will learn how we can use the same Blueprint to create a peaceful world and transform our personal and business lives and our communities. The Blueprint is a model for social justice and economic development that any nation can use. We will also explore new revolutionary science and how it has validated the relevancy of using this ancient Blueprint in modern society. We will learn about the discovery of the Phoenician gene marker and the DNA testing conducted in the Middle East and Southern Europe and how the results are linked to the millions of direct descendants of the Phoenicians living on every continent. You will see how this Blueprint has been passed down from one generation to another and how people of any race, nationality, ethnic group or religion can be a direct descendant of the Phoenicians. And, if you are not a direct descendant, you can be a “cultural Phoenician”, an individual who practices the Seven Principles.
The ancient Phoenicians are calling me to launch PhoenicianBlueprint.com. The ancients are calling you to connect with other kindred souls globally, collaborate in applying the Blueprint, and form a Phoenician community committed to birthing a peaceful world and resolving the moral dilemma of excessive greed and self interest and spiritual crises of meaning permeating all societies. Together, we can build a bridge of wisdom between the ancient and modern world.
Will you answer the call? Will you join millions globally to create the Phoenician Community and collaborate, co-operate, and initiate collective action to create a transformative social movement?
The Ancient Wisdom of Phoenicians is a series of 15 blog articles. Article 2 is: Phoenicians Are a Beacon of Light