Monthly Archives: March 2015

The Time of Christ Arrives

“The time of the Holy Spirit, or the time in which communication was needed between the illusion and the truth, must end in order for the truth to become the one reality.” (ACOL, Treatise on the Personal Self, 17.8)

Truth is the one reality. And it comes, for many of us, now, after the time of the Holy Spirit and in the time of Christ. We thought that we needed an intermediary, and indeed we did. We would have been too terrified by a direct approach to God, a course that Jesus says would have been more traumatic than beatific. So, at the point of the illusion of separation, God created the Holy Spirit, an intermediary between Him and us. We are not afraid of the Holy Spirit. We do not feel uneasy in this manner of communication.

But now we are moving beyond, into true reality. We are in the time of Christ, and we listen to the indwelling spirit, the inner Christ Self. This form of guidance can less be seen as exterior to ourselves (though in truth the Holy Spirit also is not separate from us).

In the time of the Holy Spirit, He mediated between illusion and truth. But we are heading into truth without mediation now. We are strong enough to do so. God knows His children. We will head into our true reality with the strength that only God can imbue in us. And when we are strong on the inside, invulnerable, we will know the Christ Self for the first time.

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Glimpses of Christ-Consciousness Will Offer Invulnerability

“An attitude of invulnerability is necessary now. It is not arrogance or a means by which to flirt with risk and danger. It is simply your reality.” (ACOL, C:25.13)

We are invulnerable, though we have seemed to be anything but, so far in our experience on earth. Our reality is a reality of invulnerability, for when we are in our reality, nothing can harm us. Illusions no longer have any punching power. We do not cringe in the face of denunciations from the outside, for we know that we would be cringing in the face of illusion, and illusion can do nothing to us.

We do not test out God by getting in situations that put our physical form in harm’s way. This would be arrogance and a flirtation with risk and danger. We do not tempt God. We simply recognize that invulnerability means that no longer is struggle our way. Struggle is not the only way to growth, though it is the way that we have used heretofore in our illusory world. We grew mightily when pitted against forces greater than ourselves.

Give up this old way of reacting. We can grow easily and effortlessly, for we are not complete in all particulars when we have reached Christ-consciousness. God will still fill us out with new gifts. We will do more, not less. But we will do so from a place of repose. God seeks our rest, our relaxation, not our fervent pushing of the rock of Sisyphus up the mountain, only to have that rock fall to the foot of the mountain once again—with the process to be repeated. This is the way of the ego, which would have us seek and seek, never to find.

So ask God for invulnerability. He will respond. And in the invulnerability we will, once again, get a glimpse of the way that he would point out to us, over and over, until we get it right.

By Ivor Sowton: The Time Is Now! A Note on the Appreciation of Others

Jesus in A Course of Love (ACOL), as he does in A Course in Miracles (ACIM), and for that matter in the New Testament (“Love Thy neighbor as thyself”), is often working to convince us of the critical importance of appreciating our brothers and sisters in our lives just as they seem to be occurring to us.

In the New Testament (our reading of which is admittedly encumbered by the passage of two millennia and translations from Aramaic to Greek to Latin to English, with numerous political influences on the translations by all accounts), Jesus still comes through with the same basic message: we are to recognize whom we perceive to be “others” as ourselves, and this will lead us into the Kingdom of Heaven. Moreover, we are to forgive “our transgressor” (that is, the one we thought had done us wrong!) 70X7 times–meaning all the time!

In ACIM, Jesus has many extremely beautiful and powerful Workbook Lessons devoted to “seeing our brother differently” as a way of letting go of our grievance against him, as our grievance can only hamper our own experience of the enveloping Peace of God. Original ACIM teacher Ken Wapnick put it in such an effective way by saying “No one but YOU can prevent your own direct experience of the Peace of God!” So when we really do the insight work asked of us in any of these great Dispensations from Jesus, we eventually see that we were judging “someone else” in order to remain separated and unrelated to them and a lot of others like them, making us vastly superior to “them” and effectively blocking access to Divine Love and Peace– FOR US! When we finally see this (!), then we undertake the undoing of “the old thought system” that both ACIM and ACOL refer to so often.

In A Course of Love, Jesus is in my opinion gives a current re-tuning of that eternal message of love, by which I mean he uses terminology and insight into our present time realities in a way that can be extremely helpful to us. In the wonderful Third Treatise, Jesus leads us into an understanding of our own unique role in a world that has become over-populated with humans, many of whom seemed determined to operate by the old paradigm of “kill or be killed,” also known as “the survival of the fittest.” This is the old ego thought system that has literally run the show for us humans here on Earth for AT LEAST the full length of our recorded history (which is at least seven thousand years–a pretty good chunk of time!), and by extrapolation for long long before that.

Now, however, we are coming into a truly New Age, according to this Great Master in this great Work. In “The New,” children now being born into “The Time of Christ” will have now have no desire to form a separate and conflicted ego, and will only settle for its provisional establishment while they wait for something MUCH BETTER, which they seem to be “geared” to expect as natural and the way things should be. All this is to be found at the end of the Third Treatise of ACOL, which I cannot recommend more highly!

My job as a man in his 60s, as I now understand it from this Teaching, is to hold a space for these new ones coming into a Higher Age–an age much closer to the Gates of Heaven, as the end of the Text of ACIM would say. My generation can and should mentor the young, of course (we just had our first grandchild, and it makes me appreciate just how helpless and dependent we are on our adult relatives when we “pop in” as 7-9 pound infants!) But as we help raise the young we can also be trying to cultivate an attitude of sincere appreciation for who they are in their True Natures.

Perhaps we could look at it this way. A highly advanced, highly empathic and very compassionate Alien first coming into contact with Earth and its dominant species right now would most probably be VERY CONCERNED for our continued existence, and any potential ability to thrive in harmony with all might well appear to be an almost impossibly remote chance! Overpopulation, extreme concentration of wealth in the hands of a privileged few while the masses languish, huge ongoing wars causing massive loss of life, impoverishment and starvation, huge stockpiles of armed nuclear warheads just waiting for “parts of the Sonship” crazy enough to set them off, easily preventable environmental degradation including the now exponential global warming—all with the powers that be seemingly having no desire to do anything different from what got us into this mess in the first place!

So it is actually a daunting scenario. The thing that can turn it around, according to Jesus in the ACOL, is a whole new state of consciousness, which he calls the Elevated Self of Form. This is our sense of ourselves becoming hugely expanded through receiving the Christ Consciousness of Unity in Relationship with ALL our brothers and sisters. He entreats us very directly and personally here in the Fourth Treatise:

“What you are called to do is to, through your multitude, sustain Christ-consciousness, and thus create the union of the human and the divine as new state of being.” (4.18)

May we all be empowered to do this, whatever the apparent age of our bodies! We are coming into a very auspicious time, according to our Great Master. Time to jump on the bandwagon!

Walk into Your Natural State

“This faulty perception of union would keep you from the goal you seek, the goal that is no goal but your only reality, the natural state in which you exist but for your decision to reject your reality and your true nature. (ACOL, C:8.12)

When we seek to reach union by way of having the upper hand, the power, in our relationships, we seek amiss. This is the “faulty perception of union” to which this quotation points. Our true nature is found not here, but our true nature is our reality. And that nature is a Self that knows no judgment, no attack, and who seeks to love always. This true nature is the nature that we embody when we have changed consciousness to the consciousness reflected in Awakening. But we are not able to make this shift in consciousness solely of ourselves.

God makes this decision, of this we have been told often. We need to realize, though, that Awakening is God’s will for us, and thus our own will as well—for our two wills are actually one, always and forever. We might think that we are not worthy of God’s action toward us in Awakening, but this somewhat misstates the case. We have to let go of all things that stand in the way of Awakening. Only this much can we do. We cannot reach Awakening from a force of personal will.

We need to give up planning, to give up attack, to give up holding judgments one against the other.

Our planning now becomes only that which we deem in our deepest heart to be needed. This is the directive that comes from the inner Self, the guidance that is internal. Previously we relied on the Holy Spirit, and He is within as well, but we nevertheless saw His guidance as standing apart from our deepest Self. It was not thus, but we were not yet ready to conceive of the Almighty in any other way. This was the way of A Course in Miracles. Now we walk the way of A Course of Love. Where before we looked to the Holy Spirit, now we look to our inner Christ Self. The time of the Holy Spirit is ending, and we are in the time of the second coming of Christ. Hence the terminology differs.

Similarly, we also give up attack and holding judgment one against the other. The two concepts are usually linked in our minds, for we attack that which seems to be difference, and inferior, to ourselves, something against which we can judge as being “wrong.”
It is not really thus. The way that we are looking upon may be less enlightened than we wish to be, but we are actually all equal in the eyes of God. Only time separates us, and time does not really exist.

So if we do these three—give up planning against contingencies to come (as a defense), give up attack, and give up judgment—we will have done quite a lot to remove the barriers that have kept God from moving in our direction with Awakening. We cannot do this alone, though—never alone. We need His help, and His help is only a heartfelt request away.

Make a New Choice for Unity/Union

“Make a new choice! The choice that your heart yearns to make for you and that your mind is finding increasingly difficult to deny. When you choose unity over separation, you choose reality over illusion. You end opposition by choosing harmony. You end conflict by choosing peace.” (ACOL, 6.5)

This series of quotations emphasize that reality is union or unity. We are One. We are part of God, Who is One. Our heart knows this, and it is only our mind that has doubts. Our mind will find it increasingly difficult to deny this new reality—a reality of harmony and peace, ending opposition and conflict.

“You are creating the state of unity as a new reality for your Self even though it is actually a return to what has always been.” (ACOL, 6.9)

We are leaving illusion behind now that we have come to unity. And we are returning to what has actually been true all along, a “return to what has always been.” We have never actually been in illusion; we just imagined ourselves to be in that state, a state that we thought was separate from God. Our desire to experience separation from the whole drove us to make the ego, which accentuated the divorce, presumed, between God and ourselves.
Now we know that we are returning to the true reality. We are returning to God, to “know the place for the first time” (T. S. Eliot).

“When you have felt the reality of union, you have felt the place in which no want exists. You felt this through the responsiveness of the relationship that is unity.” (ACOL, Dialogues, Day 3, 3.39)

We have need for nothing when we are in the state of unity, knowingly. We don’t pretend to be able to go it alone. We don’t even try. And we want for nothing as a result. Our needs are met by the union in which we reside.

Others reach out to us, others with whom we are in relationship. This is the “responsiveness” of the relationship that is unity. Others know that we cannot provide everything that we need for ourselves. And as we reach out to others, they reciprocate. There is only unity, a Oneness that ensures that no want will long exist for anybody. We meet each other’s needs. And all is well.

“This somewhere else we have defined as your true reality, the reality of union. Living in this reality, the reality of certainty, is the only key to abundance.” (ACOL, Dialogues, Day 3, 3.47)

In union, we are certain—no longer afraid, no longer alone and lonely, adrift with needs that seemingly have no solutions. We are abundant, for we have found the key to abundance. We live in the reality of union with our brothers and sisters, and with God, and with our Self, and we know peace for the first time. We have every need met at the point of articulating that need. Indeed, no need is not met.
What more could we ask to experience?

“It is the world of unity, the true reality, through which your desires are responded to.” (ACOL, Dialogues, Day 3, 3.42)

Our desires are also answered (not just needs), as this quotation makes clear, when we live in the world of unity. Unity is the true reality, the place that we have been longing to find but without knowing where to look.

“In unity, perfection is the reality. Your reality is union. Thus no striving for either unity or perfection is necessary. The ‘answer’ for those in need of challenges, is the challenge presented in the call to reside in unity and to express the divinity of their nature through sharing in union and relationship.” (ACOL, Addendum, A.25)

We are perfect in this new world. Oh, we may not recognize our perfection. We may even think it scandalous to say that we are “perfect.” If we get angry often, we can turn aside from this. If we attack often, we can turn aside from this. Jesus shows us the way to the innocence in which we were born, the same innocence that newborn babies exude.

We do not have to look for challenges beyond the simple fact of living in unity with our brothers and sisters, distinct from us and therefore possible of knowing in relationship. We have a divinity that has eluded us until now. We are meant to share, and share we will. This sharing, Jesus says, will satisfy the yearnings of our heart to have more challenges.

The ego set such challenges before us. Unfathomable challenges. But that way of life is behind us now, and we can celebrate. It is enough to know that we will stay in unity with others, that we are no longer alone in a cruel and dark world. The day will brighten as we see the truth of these statements. As we share, we are given. As we love, we see God’s mission accomplished through the tasks that we assume that are meant just for us.

Our Mind is One with God

“Your mind is not contained within your body but is one with God and shared equally with all alike. This is reality.” (ACOL, C:6.2)

This concept, that our mind is not contained within our body, is part of the theology of A Course of Love. We don’t have to understand the concept fully to entertain that what Jesus says just may be true. If our mind is part of Mind, the Whole, the All of God, then we are not limited to a finite, physical form that we call the “body.” The body is the home of the ego, but we are no longer ego; we have left that concept in the dust behind us as we walked into the sunlight with God. We are the Self that is joined, is One, with God.

The mind thus becomes a much larger concept than we have known previously. We are not fooled any longer by illusory form. Our mind will survive our body (this another implication of what this quotation says).

The mind that is One with God is not meant to be weak and frail. It is only the body that can ever appear weak and frail, and these characteristics of physical form are finite. They do not survive the grave. This in itself is comforting, for we can know that our mind will live on. We may not be certain of what overcomes death, but we can be certain that it will be good.

God makes the good on this earth as well. When we know that we are mind rather than body, our health does not so much concern us. We no longer believe the lies of the ego, which would say that we are bound by the body. We are independent of body, and, as mind, we are joined with each other—no longer a separate, finite, spot of illusion that knows not where to go or what to do.

One Unity in a Diversity of Relationships

“Your brother does not exist apart from you, nor you from your brother. This is reality.” (ACOL, 6.2)

This quotation builds on the idea of joining with our brothers and sisters, One unity in the diversity of different entities in relationship. Here we learn that we do not actually exist separately from our brother or brother at all, but are One with him or her. Jesus says simple, “This is reality.”

This is another way of saying that God is not existent in separate realities in a pantheistic universe, with little gods in everything. We believe that we are part of God, that He differentiated His “God-stuff” into all that exists. And we in turn are meant to be co-creators with Him.

We were not designed to be alone, and that is one reason that the egoic choice was so destructive to us. The ego wants us alone, ourselves against the world, One in nothing. And we suffer in this pseudo-independence, because it is not a state of reality at all. It is a false concept of reality that will not hold stand up to testing. We know intuitively that there is another way, a better way to live, and when we are joined one to the other, we know that we are right in this knowledge.

So we are to join in holy relationship with each other. Never meant to be separate from our companions, we cease trying.

And we are much the better for giving up what would never work, anyway.