by Saje Dyer & Serena Dyer Pisoni
“The principal goal of parenting is to teach children to become their own parents . . . You are to be their guide for a while, and then, you will enjoy watching them take off on their own.”
Dr. Wayne W. Dyer, What Do You Really Want for Your Children?
We had tears in our eyes, overcome with the thrill of seeing our two infant boys meet each other for the first time. When Forrest and Julian spontaneously locked arms, we captured the moment in about two hundred photographs in less than a minute. With that pure joy came a deep sense of Knowing—all we had been through in our lives and especially the past four years had led us to this glorious, perfect, bittersweet moment—bittersweet because we both wished our father could see this—the little brother-cousins together.
Now that our dad was gone, for the first time ever, we wanted to learn and apply what he had spent his entire life teaching, and he was no longer here to talk to about it. We experienced an acute sense of pain upon realizing that now that we had really challenging things happening in our lives and needed his message more than ever, he wasn’t going to be here to supply it. We were suddenly aware that it was up to us. If we wanted to become committed to remembering the principles Dad taught, committed to remembering who we were inside, despite our worlds falling apart and transforming around us, we had to do it alone.
In this book, we share how the heartbreaking catalyst of our dad’s death helped us awaken from what Jung termed the “morning” of our lives—focused on personal, physical, and material accomplishments—progress into the afternoon, and move toward evening as we make an inward shift of intention toward a higher spiritual understanding and connection within ourselves and with the world.
When we were children, everything was easy. As teenagers, we hit choppy waters but were able to learn to adjust the sails and keep going. The lessons our dad spent his life teaching millions of people seemed like teachings we could apply to our own obstacles, mostly because, unbeknownst to us at the time, compared to so many, our lives had been pretty easy. Learning to apply his work when it felt like life shit the bed? And having to do it without Dad a phone call away? That felt like drowning.
Each of us is born with the Knowing—the ability to connect to our divine, best self— and when we do, our lives align, things make sense, and we realize our purposes both small and enormous. We didn’t discover our Knowing; we returned to it.
Dr. Wayne Dyer was beloved by millions of fans around the world. Oprah called him the Father of Motivation, and strangers regularly stopped him on the street and openly wept as they told him how he’d transformed their lives, but to us, the youngest daughters of Wayne and Marcelene Dyer, he was the person we relied on for advice and gas money—our profound yet goofy dad. When he died suddenly in 2015, we were all blindsided by grief and felt unprepared to navigate life’s challenges and conflicts without his guidance.
The experience launched us on an adventure from loss to understanding. Like anyone who finds themselves at a personal crossroads, we had the choice of being broken or transformed by the experience of our father’s death. He’d always been there for us when we needed him, and we came to discover he still was, just in a different way. We recommitted to the teachings our dad raised us with, and our mom, too, learning to trust what we’d been rooted in from birth while branching higher and higher toward faith.
As we came to realize and metabolize our father’s teachings with a new urgency, intimacy, and power and applied them to our lives—the ups and downs of relationships, young motherhood, family, careers, and crises—we ultimately found Dad’s wisdom—the Knowing—was embedded in our DNA.
When Christian Nestell Bovee wrote, “Kindness is a language the dumb can speak and the deaf can hear and understand,” he was speaking of the Knowing. When Albert Einstein said, “I believe in intuitions and inspirations. I sometimes feel that I am right. I do not know that I am,” he was speaking of the Knowing. In the final volume of Baird Thomas Spalding’s Life and Teaching of the Masters of the Far East, a series of books our dad was devouring right before he passed away, he underlined, “There is a light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world. That light is eternal, All-Powerful and Imperishable. Only that which is subject to birth is subject to death. The Light is the extension of God into man. It is not born nor can it die.” That is the Knowing.
Dad often told Saje he knew she had a big dharma or purpose to fulfill. “You’re not quite ready yet; you still have a tendency to want to be right rather than kind. But I know that in ten years, you will be ready to start doing what I’m doing. Just place it in your imagination.” It took our dad leaving his physical body as a catalyst for this to start to happen for both of us. Not that we feel like we can even come close to filling his shoes, but we are beginning to trust that it’s possible to serve others through books and connecting with groups. We’re starting to see the “how” and the path.
A few years ago, when Serena and Dad came up with the idea to write a book together, a book about how we were raised and what it was like to grow up in the Dyer household, Serena felt daunted yet thrilled. She wasn’t sure she could adequately express what it was like to have him and Mom as parents in only ten chapters, but he was so encouraging, so loving. He worked with her, often saying, “Serena, you have a gift for telling stories. Just tell your stories, and it will be perfect.” Serena felt his love and pride in her.
Dad and Serena agreed to name the book they wrote Don’t Die With Your Music Still in You because for her, it was the most important lesson he taught. Dad came here with music to play, and he played it so loudly that it changed the world. One man, with some really big ideas, transformed the lives of millions of people for the better. Our dad, with his love of teaching, sharing, and storytelling, helped millions improve their circumstances. It is now our promise to Dad that we will not die with our music still in us. We carry on—it is our Knowing—and will do everything we can to further his message, as he asked each of his children to do in their own way.
This book is our song for him and for everyone, because we’re all born with a Knowing— an inner compass, the quiet urgings of our soul that guide us as if randomly, but in truth, by the spoken whisper of God, the Universe, divine energy, whatever you want to call it. No matter how far removed we might become from heeding the guidance we were born to receive, it is still there, for every single one of us. Returning to our Knowing is only a matter of giving love, offering kindness, and paying attention.
We are grateful to have parents who shared things like that. We are grateful they taught all eight of their children to go within and find God. Grateful that they taught us to be open to other people’s ideas and ways of living. They taught us to leave the judgment to someone else and, instead, to treat others with compassion, understanding that everyone is doing the best they can. Most important, we are grateful they taught us that even in death, we are shedding one coat and putting on another. Our dad told us he would never leave us, even when he departed this earthly realm, and we know this is true. He always reminded us that when the day came and he was gone and our hearts ached for him, we should think of him as though he is just in the next room, the very room from which we all originate and will one day return.
Excerpt from the book The Knowing: Eleven Lessons to Understand the Quiet Urges of Your Soul by Saje Dyer & Serena Dyer Pisoni © 2021 Saje Dyer and Serena Dyer Pisoni, reprinted with permission from the authors and the publisher, Sounds True, Inc.
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Saje Dyer is a 31 year-old woman from New York City. She grew up in Boca Raton, FL and moved to New York where she recently graduated from NYU with a masters degree in psychology. Saje was a featured speaker in the 2014 Game Changer Global Summit and is the author of a children’s book entitled Goodbye Bumps! Talking to What’s Bugging You that tells the true story of how she was able to heal herself as a child through the power of the mind. Saje often traveled with her Dad, Dr. Wayne Dyer, to tell the story to his audiences and she recently appeared on his PBS special. Saje also owns a restaurant in New York City along with her husband. Saje is a mother to her little boy Julian and to another little boy currently on the way. She enjoys traveling, learning, and spending time with loved ones. Being the youngest of 8 children, family is and always has been an important part of her life. Visit sajedyer.com.
Serena Dyer Pisoni was born and raised in South Florida where she currently resides. She attended the University of Miami where she graduated with both bachelors and masters degrees in religious studies and international relations. After taking time off to travel the world with her father, the late Dr. Wayne Dyer, and visit numerous Holy and religious sites in order to further her studies, Serena returned to South Florida where she began to write her first book, Don’t Die with Your Music Still in You: My Experience Growing Up with Spiritual Parents, which has appeared on several best seller lists. She has been a contributor to HuffPost and Positively Positive. Serena’s second book, The Knowing, was coauthored with her sister Saje Dyer and published in May 2021. Visit serenadyer.com.