Here’s Jesus speaking in the Second Treatise of a Course of Love (ACOL):
Giving is not only about choosing what good and helpful parts of yourself to share with the world. It is also about giving the world an opportunity to give back. It is about recognizing the constant and ongoing exchange that allows needs to be met. It is trusting that if you have a need for money, or time, or honesty, or love, it will be provided.
This wonderful message of trust is in the context of giving and receiving as one.
Now, when we are feeling challenged, most of us tend to slip back into ego at least somewhat. Those who do NOT backslide under over-stress are either highly evolved or (and/or?) have been practicing forgiveness sincerely!– and now see it come to their rescue as a strong and reliable part of themselves. This is why it’s so important to have an ongoing forgiveness practice as Jesus recommends–all the time. Even in the small things–maybe especially in the small things!, for this is how we build that capacity to see things in a more positive light when not feeling totally overwhelmed.
A major trust of both ACOL and ACIM (A Course in Miracles) is toward greater trust in God and the goodness of Life. As the great Master He is, Jesus leads us through many hidden layers of resistance to this trust-building.
So when we feel really over-stressed, most of us slip back into ego-based fear positions of control/protect, as outlined in the first sections of ACOL. That is, we tend to blame someone for this great calamity that shouldn’t be happening! We try to control things by attacking the bad guys back, or by withdrawing further into our ego isolation, like the dragon protecting the treasure from EVERYONE! If things get really bad, we can become desperate and fall into the black hole of complete emotional isolation, where we actually feel completely alone in all the universe!
This is when we can entertain the notion that an angry God threw us out of Heaven because we are so bad we deserve only Hell! This is why Jesus has to work so hard at trust-building. ACIM is masterful in helping us grow beyond being locked in victim role to a vengeful Divinity, a vengeful God driving us from the Garden of Eden, complete with angels wielding flaming spears, no less! We gradually learn to take responsibility for being here. We learn that it wasn’t God who threw us out, but that that it was WE who left voluntarily, through the exercise of our God-given free will.
ACOL is part of the new dispensation of Jesus’ work in the world, in my estimation. After having laid the necessary groundwork in ACIM to free us sufficiently from sin-consciousness (which is all about black holes!), Jesus in ACOL goes on to open up a lot of new acceptance for the individual state in which we find ourselves here in this world.
The previous assumption for most of us, once having accepted responsibility for having left unity-consciousness on our own, was that the separation experiment was all a big mistake–a colossal failure on our part. Like Yuddhistira in the Mahabharata of Classical Vedic India, we have gambled away our Kingdom, and now we have to deal with the consequences!
But the ACOL helps us to see that our desire to experience individuality was not a mistake (and certainly not a sin!), but that the problem came when we lost connection with God and with all the other individuals we had become as we left–first as the One Divine Offspring and then collectively, as the sense of separation hardened up. We are led to a vision of individuality as an innocent creative desire, which, if reunited with our connection to the Divine becomes part of Creation itself rather being than inimical to it. It says that the problem is not in the incarnation as an individual, but instead in the loss of connection with God and with all the “other” individuals. When that connection is restored we are freed to assume the elevation of form, or the redemption of individually, now finally freed from all sense of isolation.
But how do we feel that love when we need it? As Jesus says in the opening quote, if we are in a flow of giving and receiving as one, we will be capable of recognizing our need for love (or money, or time, or honesty–how beautiful!) then we will successfully ASK FOR HELP when we need it!
I have a good friend who is an intuitive healer. In his work with clients, he said that the real challenge is to wait while the person airs out their negative story (who did what to whom!). He said that he is convinced that what we all really want and need for our healing and well being (however we each envision that) is to feel LOVED AND LOVING, that is, fully worthy of being loved by God and by everyone else in our lives AND by being aware of a flow of love through us to family and friends and all beings in general. As in the Beatles’ song,”all you need is love!”
It’s a point well taken. How do we get beyond our petty grievances and just get back in the River of Divine Love when we’ve been temporarily caught in a stagnant eddy of ego fear? How do we drop our ego story and remember we’re all One?
As my dear mother often said, “when in doubt, pray!” That is, can we be humble enough, when we suddenly feel all alone, to 1) acknowledge our perceived loss of connection to Source, 2) stop browbeating ourselves or someone else for this, and 3) drop down into our open heart, inviting that Wholeheartedness to run things again, as God intended.
Jesus is alive, as He reminds us gently and repeatedly in ACOL, and His mission is to help us get back into miracle-mindedness, where giving and receiving are One again. Call to Him. He will help us, as we will help others when we are stronger.
It is trusting that if you have a need for money, or time, or honesty, or love, it will be provided. ( ACOL, 2nd Treatise, 7.15)