Partnering with the Universe – A Universalis Project Update
Partnering with the Universe – A Universalis Project Update

Aviv Shahar and Kyriaki Nikandrou

May 16, 2024
Portals Into the Soul Event

Do you ever wonder why some business or life partnerships flourish and endure the test of time, while others wither away and fade out prematurely? What are the key elements of breakthrough partnering?

If we paused to consider the 12 to 20 people in our life who enable us to have well-being, efficiency and ultimately enjoy success, and if we cared to appreciate them a little more, we might be even more successful and fulfilled.

What about our partnership with the universe? Are we relaxing in a new way to trust life, to trust the universe enough to surrender to guidance? To what degree are we trustworthy agents of its renewing and evolutionary natures? Or are we “dead-enders”? Experience shows us time and again, the moment we become hard in ourselves, we end something rather than give it life. Can we be soft, supple, and resiliently new, like life?

These inquiries emerged in the spontaneous Homo Universalis #8 conversation, recorded in June 2023, while Aviv Shahar was travelling in Lisbon, Portugal, to lead a strategy event with a group of executives. The previous seven Universalis conversations had a propelling thrust as we were trying to cover a tremendous amount of ground. In this conversation we felt the need to slow down, to make space for reflection and musing. What transpired took us by surprise! It evoked rarified perceptions and a sense of transcendence and grace.

Because of its magical nature, we called it “Partnering with the Universe” and are now sharing it publicly with everyone. It is through conversation that we developed and discovered the theme, and that the Homo Universalis Project is about bringing to light a new way of partnering with the universe and dancing that partnership in our own life.


Breakthrough Partnering

A core premise in being a successful leader, whatever the role, is the ability to partner effectively with others. There are typically key partnering relationships that allow us to be successful in most pursuits or projects. It is important to notice and realize that we are successful through those people; they enable us to thrive, and we can consciously and actively appreciate their contribution and assistance. In this conversation, Aviv offers a simple framework of the three elements of breakthrough partnering he has taught to thousands of leaders all over the world.

The first element of breakthrough partnering is mutual trust. If we don’t trust each other, we will not begin a real conversation. Trust by itself, even though crucial to build and maintain, is insufficient; we also need to have a shared imperative that will compel us to collaborate and partner. HU 1This can be a shared need; sometimes it’s a shared threat, a burning platform, or an urgent project. What happens two weeks or two months later if the urgent need is addressed? Our partnership may disappear. We need to bring in a third condition, which is a shared purpose, a cause that will bring us together enduringly.

Any two of these three factors will be insufficient to catalyze sustained breakthrough partnering. If we trust each other and have a shared imperative, but don’t have something that will hold us in a sustained way, our partnership will not be durable. We need to bring all three conditions to achieve a radical partnering breakthrough.

Whether you are leading by your functional role or simply working in a complex system, you need to partner with people inside and outside your organization. To do so effectively, you must resourcefully cultivate with those different audiences: shared trust, shared imperative and shared purpose.

Similarly, in our evolving journey, how can we create a breakthrough partnering with the universe, trusting it more fully and being a trustworthy agent of its growth and evolution?


A Purposeful Universe


One of the imperatives of the universe is to renew and regenerate. If we remove the rejuvenation and renewal abilities as properties of the living universe, it will quickly come to an end.

Are we aligned with the property of eternal renewal and rebirth ourselves? In other words, can we pick ourselves up when we feel down or when we fall on our face? Can we be self-starters, rather than expect that somebody else will rescue us? We do not imply that we cannot ask for help; we obviously can. Are we able to bring to the help we seek, our own renewal-readiness and self-responsibility?

The universe seems to evolve through a process of purposeful evolution. It forever emerges into greater levels of development, complexity, and conscious capacities. This is not a deterministic teleology; it is one where each personHU 2 is completely free to choose whether they’re going to be a poet, or a dancer, a business leader, or a gardener, or anything really.

When we frame purpose, we are not describing a fixed paradigm; we observe an emergent property inclusive of “thou mayest”, and “you can do and become all that is available in the universe”. The universe summons us to discover how we can be self-electing, self-authoring and self-configuring; how we can be trusted to be a place that is regenerative and evolutionary oriented.

It’s about being ready to dance the dance of the universe the way it wants to arise and express itself through each one of us at this moment in time. This includes through the pain and the joy, the love and the sorrow, and the full spectrum in between.

The Universalis project is a way in which we imagine and contemplate human life, to be the place and the vehicle for the universe to liberate itself to its greater potential.

Even in this time of strife and struggle, where we see tremendous pain and grief, the universe did not lose interest in its beloved partner in humanity. It’s offering new possibilities and new evolutionary permissions. It just needs some humans joining the party to dance.

There is a sense that some are heeding the call. They are showing up in many different places, all over the planet, self-arising to create such “dancing parties” — endeavoring to unlock new possibilities for human life to evolve and create a healthier, brighter world.

We welcome you to join us in this Homo Universalis emerging work and dance with the Universe by supporting this journey of discovery. You can become a Portals 2 member and be immersed in the Universalis exploration and revealing conversations.


With hope and value for your contributions,


On behalf of the Portals Team



Universalis Project b

The Embodiment Quest

In the Homo Universalis #8 conversation we also wondered and pondered on the following:

How can we integrate in a deeper, more effective, more real way, the feeling that something new is now possible for humans to reach for, and for evolution to progress?

There is a point where that which is a concept or a frame of looking at something from the outside of us, drawsHU 3 closer and nearer. Then we begin to see it in us, and to see ourselves in it. There is a gentle dance of not superimposing prematurely on it, but rather allowing the conversation, the dance, to unfold on the inside. This is the nature of true, transformative, evolutionary processes that go beyond the conceptual discourse to unlock embodied dimensions.

It’s not limited to thinking; it is a holistic finding and weaving of different parts inside the greater whole of our being, past, future, and present. It is not something easy to name or pin down as it is shapeshifting; it almost has sounds, anchoring in something that is transient but real, balancing at a very fine edge between trusting and believing.

We gave ourselves the permission to become a bit poetic, acknowledging that poetry is a medium that allows words to be a little freer. In our search to find the right word, we recognize that sometimes there isn’t a right word, because we are talking about new possibilities and dimensions of living.

What do we find helpful and assisting in the process of inner transformation and reconfiguration? How do we make something our own, so that it is configured as part of a self-arising and self-authored life, without narrowing it to our size?


universalis project c

The Self-Authoring Journey


How do we integrate emergent possibilities in ways that facilitate liberation with us, rather than arrestation?

This search and its many facets can become a catalyst to a creative process that is connective to a higher source. This is a long-wave process, where there is an apparent stillness; it feels a bit like the fishermen standing in front of the river, being completely still, but ready to respond at any moment because their faculties are finely tuned.

Thinking then becomes more like “abiding with”, avoiding the kind of front brain activity. We’re mindful that there are different energies available in different fields, and different potencies that can be tapped and accessed in a sacred marriage between our self-realization and self-responsibility.

The self-authoring and assembling we are describing is not about cramming all the content of words into one’s head. It is a weaving integration of many threads of a process, in a way that generates a hologram of possibilities. HU 4This is when we start to lead from the unconscious, where there is an inherent trust and belief. It matters not where we enter this process; entry can be found on the path of least resistance, wherever in our systems there is resonance, where the key matches the lock, and it opens for us.

This is another reason why the Homo Universalis research needs more people: each person is going to unlock and reveal different facets of the journey. Humans everywhere are now invited into an evolving ecology of a new epoch, in which we get to reconfigure ourselves. The self-electing, self-configuring responsibility is in stepping up to that dialogue because no one else can do it for us.

We are all children seeking to grow and mature in our relationship with the Universe, and we are invited to become self-responsible adults. We are born into a time of liberation, appearing now. How can we do anything other than offer our best, and endeavor to be at the leading edge, inside the evolutionary impulse of this time?

Part of the discovery we are bringing to the Universalis Project is the re-authentication and the revalidation of an inner human technology, the new sense organs and sense faculties that are latent within the potential of the human model. Our entry point in this Homo Universalis journey is choosing to trust once again the human system. It is not a theoretical or intellectual exercise; it is a living breathing endeavor.

How do we find and embody the energetics and the essence vitamins that will heal and counterbalance the influences of the many agents of spiritual death, opened up in a previous HU conversation?

It seems that the new human of the universal kind has been going through an initiation process, a gradual awakening of consciousness through the rainbow spectrum of knowledge. We now become able to hold all these threads and frequencies together, in various combinations, and to fuse them together.

This is where the ensoulment and embodiment of our higher mental and spiritual connections become crucial.

A Porous Universe Learning About Itself


When we truly perceive something, we become responsible for its fruition through us; how it integrates into our daily processes, in our behavioral patterns, in our various expressions. Also, in how it is offered to others, so that it can move, and not be arrested; how it can cause refinement, healing, elevation, transference, and a state of communion.

The people born in the second half of the 20th century came into the digital age as adults and found a HU 5transitional interim between three different generations. Our parents’ generation lived when, metaphorically, the light was on the outside; an ideological age when the modernity project was at its prime. It expressed itself in the world with the establishment of global systems — especially after the Second World War — such as the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, which enabled global commerce.

We were the generation that needed to turn on the light on the inside, waking up to the interior journey. This is why in the middle of the 20th century psychoanalysis exploded into the mainstream, along with many other parallel lines of modern spiritual, development and community work — all endeavors heralding the interior journey. Yet, in our journey of integration, we were very much still influenced and overshadowed by the primacy of the intellect.

Part of the counter reaction can be seen with younger generations, with the 20-plus young people today refusing to accept anything from an outside point of view. They want to make the primacy not the concept, but the inside, the feeling life. They are instinctually driven into feeling and experiencing life from the inside.

Their challenge is that their approach is effective when the infrastructure is already in place. If their feeling is not tethered to something that is naturally connected to how things work in the universe, they will time and againHU 6 recycle themselves in a place that’s arrested, rather than in a new place that is liberating.

When something becomes important for us, or we are inspired by a body of knowledge, we naturally seek to come into contact with the motivating, propelling reasons why it arose in the first place. This is part of the natural human journey, to seek and gain access to the originating impulse, coming into partnership with the universe.

Our conscious participation in this universal arising generates and builds interpenetrating ecologies that are porous. We are describing human life and its next prospective evolution as a way for the universe to learn about itself.

In other words, can I surrender to finding a way of being intimate with my discovery process on the inside? With how I grapple with pain, with love?

The universe is a fountain of life that’s expressing itself and arising through each one of us. When we surrender the laboratory that we are to be a part of its discovery, we get to live both a very personal life, and at the same time, an impersonal universal life.

These are some of the invitations the Universalis Project makes. If you care to join the exploration, do let us know. We welcome your insights and inspirations, as we consider all Portals conversations and writings as best approximations we can come to in the moment until we can co-create new drafts.


Kyriaki Nikandrou

Kyriaki Nikandrou

When I was a child, staring at the starry night skies, I was filled with awe and wonder, about the mysteries of the Universe, Life, Time, the Human and its place in the Cosmos, trying to connect the dots that link everything with everything…

Some years down the line, I still do. I am seeking to be in conversation with others in search for keys, for tools of understanding and application and for the real questions, the ones that become portals to contemplative journeys, leading to uncharted territories that feel like home.

I believe we are on a trajectory of multiple and unpredictable changes; it is up to each one of us to rise to the challenge of our times. Now, more than ever before, is the time to be true to ourselves and fulfill our potential.

Aviv Shahar

Aviv Shahar

Aviv serves as the Portals' sherpa. He curates transformational journeys and is a storyteller of the epochal evolution culminating at this time.

Aviv is the Founder of Aviv Consulting, helping leaders unleash strategic innovation, and is the author of Create New Futures: How Leaders Produce Breakthroughs and Transform the World Through Conversation.

Visit: Aviv Consulting