Monthly Archives: March 2016

Joy that Knows No Bounds

“The joy that will come to you from the thoughts of a mind joined in union will be unparalleled in your experience here. “Ah,” you will say with a relief and joy that knows no bounds, “this is what it is to experience and know the truth. This is what it is to create, for this is what it is like to think as God thinks.” Where once you recognized only illusion and called it reality, the mind joined in union will now, more and more, recognize only truth and experience only the truly real.” (ACOL, T1:1.10)

Union in A Course of Love means two things, related but not identical. First, union means the joining of heart and mind to form wholeheartedness. This change will transform us. It will make the second thing possible: the emergence of the Self from within, and in this emergence will come union with this Self and union with God.

Of course, all of this change will mean that enlightenment, or Christ-consciousness, is now possible for us, at first to be seen in glimpses, then in lengthening glimpses, and finally to be maintained and then sustained. It is possible for there to be a sudden change that is disorienting, but this form of change occurs less often than the gradual, quiet Awakening.

And we will know joy in union with God and in union with our Self, the part of God Who dwells within each of us. This promise is an enlargement from the dictates in A Course in Miracles, when happiness is seen to be our function (along with salvation and forgiveness). I don’t think that we need to quibble over the difference between the joy that Jesus describes in ACOL, and the happiness that he encourages in ACIM. The point is that our future is much brighter than what we have been living through, suffering because we failed to recognize and to live miracle-readiness.

The art of thought, discussed so obliquely in this first book of the Treatises, is variously described as creating like unto our Creator (God), or miracle-readiness, or prayer, or the miracle itself. The art of thought is also seen a diametrically opposite the thinking of the ego-mind, and so it is imperative that we be certain that we are no longer motivated by egoic ideals.

Let’s welcome this joy today, knowing that union is finally being reached. We live wholeheartedly, and in this new way of handling our world, we merge with the Self, the part of us Who is God Himself.

With such a change, could anything be less than ideal? Aren’t we truly and completely on our way now to a glorious new day, creating the new world that Jesus so longs to see us do?

Dear Father/Mother,

I would be grateful today for the many blessings poured out upon me previously, and the promise of ever greater blessings now and in the future. I would wait patiently for Your action in my life, for the glimpses of Awakening to lengthen, for the Awakening that You want for me to come about. When I am at peace in this world, the future seems bright indeed. And all of us can welcome a little more peace.

Be with my brothers and sisters. May I reach out when I can, and may I draw inward for sustenance when this retreat is necessary. Help me always to be open to guidance, always to cease second guessing the nudges that come to me.

Thank You for another promising day in Your Presence.

Amen.

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Rest for a Tired Mind

“The mechanics of your over-worked and over-stimulated mind were what you were asked to leave behind as this act of leaving behind was the only means by which you could allow your mind to be restful enough for it to even contemplate union or the new learning required in order to facilitate your return to union. Your return to union is your return to love and it is accessed at the center or heart of your Self. Your mind was in need of silencing in order for you to hear the wisdom of your heart and begin your return. Now, in order to complete your return, mind and heart must work as one.” (ACOL, T1:1.7)

Most of us have long sensed that we have been working too hard; in Jesus’s words, we have an “over-worked” and “over-stimulated” mind. Isn’t it a great blessing that we give our minds a rest now?

In peace we can contemplate the heartfelt counsel that Jesus gives in A Course of Love. If the mind is restful, it can contemplate union, the union of mind with heart that becomes the oft-touted (in ACOL) “wholeheartedness.” We are going into new learning, at least for a time, the time that we study the Treatises. We are returning to love, and surely this will be welcomed by all of us.

Many of us have long prized our intellect, but we surely have recognized that intellect can take us only so far. And if it has been an egoic leaning, a prideful thing, then we need to leave that prizing behind. Ultimately, we realize that the fact that one person has a higher IQ than another means nothing. We are not our IQ. We come much closer to being our heart, and in the teaching of the heart, union, which is what we need to be, will blossom.

Union is at this point a composite of mind and heart into wholeheartedness. Later on, we will see union in ACOL as the joining of the Self with the All, a blessing that is Christ-consciousness or Awakening. None of us need to wait long for this change, if we live in peace and harmony, if we don’t judge, attack, or make plans against uncertain contingencies to come.

Union is what we are about today. And the art of thought, which we will learn in this treatise, will take us up to the door. All we need to do is knock, and the door will be opened.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would live in peace today, not struggling with my intellect to make progress in this world. I am not about striving today. I know that my own striving actually avails nothing.

May I have Your help to be at peace? May I have Your help to find my way safely and in good grace, today?

Thank You.

Amen.

Heartfelt Remembrance

“While A Course of Love has led you to a state of wholeness of mind and heart, or wholeheartedness, your realization of this state of being requires further guidance.
. . .
“The first instruction I give to you is to seek no more. All that you are in need of knowing has been provided within A Course of Love. That your learning does not feel complete is not a failing of this Course or of your¬self. That your learning does not feel complete is the result of forgetfulness, which is the opposite of mindfulness. Your further learning then is learning based on mindfulness or remembering.” (ACOL, T1:1.2 – 1.3)

It is certainly welcome news to all of us that we have found, that we need seek no more. So many times in the past we have gone from one spiritual teaching to another, never satisfied. This seeking could perhaps go on indefinitely, but Jesus would not have it so. He has counseled us to combine mind and heart into wholeheartedness; this from the first book of A Course of Love. But the further guidance that he would impart to us is the art of thought, the theme of the first treatise, from the second book of A Course of Love. And the art of thought is miracle-mindedness, for which mindfulness is a handy prerequisite. By mindfulness, Jesus does not mean some Eastern philosophy, but the remembrance that he would now encourage. We forget much, but when we turn the art of thought on our remaining memories, we are making headway toward the goal of ACOL.

Remembrance is what we are here for, but not in the sense that we would live in the past. We will bring our memories to the present, with living in the present. And we will not look ahead to the future in fruitless planning that guidance does not ask of us. This living in the present brings a present moment awareness that smooths out our days. A present moment awareness gives us happiness, for not even suffering and pain are present in just a single moment. Nearly all of our perturbed feelings when overwrought are the result of remembering past pain and looking ahead to the dreaded future suffering ahead. In the present there is calm and peace.

We can reread the first book of A Course of Love numerous times, if we feel so led. The learning continues into the second book, the Treatises. But we live behind traditional learning, in traditional ways, in the third book, the Dialogues. We are finally getting somewhere in our seeking. And we know that now seeking further is not needed. ACOL will answer our final questions, take us to the next stage in our unfolding, the Christ-consciousness about which we obsess so much.

Mindfulness aids living in the present. If we pay attention to what we are doing, and why, with full awareness, we will make real progress. And our days will be like a string of pearls, all perfect and perfectly rounded into an experience that is whole. We need not anguish any longer; the way home is shown us as we live wholeheartedly, with A Course of Love (and A Course in Miracles) as our guide.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would live in the present, feeling the warmth of the sunshine, sensing Your Presence. Help me not to dwell in the past, or to look ahead to an uncertain future. Just be here now. And everything will fall into place.

May I find You today as I live in the warm and peaceful Presence that You are. Be with me as I seek to overhaul fruitless ways of living and to make a new beginning. Now is the time; today, the day.

Amen.

Embrace the Love

“Thus we end this Course with love given and love received in truth. You are the learner here until you realize that you are Love. You then become the teacher of what you are. Your mind and heart join in wholeheartedness in the embrace. You are home, and there you will forever stay.
. . .
“And what of miracles? The last and final miracle has occurred, for what miracles are needed when mind and heart are one and you have returned to the embrace? This is the miracle to end all need of miracles, the only accom¬plishment of the only Son of God. For what your heart has shared with your mind is shared with all minds and what your heart has to share is only Love. Thus has Love returned to Love.” (ACOL, C:32.3 and 32.6)

Jesus ends the first book of A Course of Love with an emphasis on Love. Later on, we will see that we cease to learn in any traditional sense, that learning is behind us now, but with these final moments in the first book, we are still learners.

And what of miracles? These also seem to be behind us now, though synchronicities will still occur that we will be tempted to call miracles. When we have joined mind and heart and are living wholeheartedness, we are living as life has been intended all along. And we are home.

We will not all have reached enlightenment at this juncture, though that is the ultimate intent of A Course of Love. It is something of a mystery still. Why do some reach enlightenment and others still catch only glimpses (for all of us, Jesus tells us in ACOL, catch glimpses)? God makes the decision, and so there are no mistakes, as there are no mistakes in all of creation. If we wonder why we don’t have sustained Christ-consciousness, we would do best to ask our Source, the inner Christ Self Who reflects God Himself. Are we doing anything wrong? Or have we chosen to remain outside the wall?

These are not easy questions to ask, easy answers to receive. Perhaps it is enough that we are miracle-minded, that we live Love as best we know how, that we live in wholehearted fashion as best we know how. We do not have all the answers while we live on earth. And impatience is a barrier, for we will have suppressed anger at our failure to achieve Awakening, and this won’t get us where we want to go.

Live the best that we know. The first book of ACOL has given much guidance. Reread as indicated. We will find our hearts warmed by the encounter that we have with Jesus in the pages of A Course of Love.

And we will move ever closer to Christ-consciousness, in that warmth.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would be patient today, seeking to enjoy the peace that only You can and do give. When my agitation rears its ugly head, teach me to calm down, to relax, to get still. In the stillness I will find You.

Be with me today, on this beautiful day of sunshine. Help me to put aside anger and attack, all judgments, needless planning, and walk into the sunlight with Jesus holding my hand.

Amen.

Let Love Guide Our Steps

“That Source is Love, and it is available in every situation but for the asking: What would love have me do? What would love have me see? What would love have me say? When you call upon Love you call upon your Source. When you seek the wisdom of your heart you call upon me. When you seek the truth that is in your mind, you call upon the Holy Spirit. Thus is the Sacred Trinity always available in every situation, and for whichever learning mode you are most comfortable. All learning modes, however, will eventually return you to the Source, which is Love. The difference between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is but the same difference of which we speak when we assure you that you are of one Mind and one Heart, and that regardless of this truth you will not, in coming to know and experience this, lose your Self.” (ACOL, C:32.2)

Jesus describes in beautiful words what he interprets to be the Trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. When we are in a particularly loving frame of mind and heart, we are seeking God, the Father, and we will be satisfied. We need only ask what to do, see, or say, and we will be answered through our Self, the Self who is never lost.

The Trinity, as a manifestation of traditional Christianity, has been particularly sacred and particularly mysterious. It is still, both of these. We use our minds when we reach to the Holy Spirit, and this is totally in line with the mind-oriented teaching of A Course in Miracles. Jesus says that when we seek through our heart, we are asking him personally for what we need or want. This does make sense, as he has championed the heart as the new way for knowledge to come to us, explained in A Course of Love.

God the Father, Christ the Son, and the Holy Spirit form a Trinity that meets all needs in us, the needs that the Self recognizes that are immediately met, therefore ceasing to be needs. Recognizing the Trinity is a particularly soulful way to live and work. If we react with our heart, we know warmth in everyday living that may have been missing previously. The heart knows warmth in a way that the mind, our intellect, does not. And the heart believes, without a ceaseless telling of what life is all about. We just know, and know well.

God, our Source, is available in every instance when we call on Love to tell us what to do, see, or say. When we react in Love, we cannot miss our calling. And our calling will be effected immediately, for God would brook no delay.

All of us have slightly different callings, reflecting what we do in this world to spread Love throughout all its regions. And Love is very needed, as we all recognize immediately. Our troubled world needs the balm of Love, for in this way its difficulties will be eased, the suffering diminished and then banished for all time. We have a high calling, each of us.

May we proceed on the way of that calling today. Just ask what the tasks for today are; guidance will reveal those tasks to us. And there will be an assurance in the telling that has been missing heretofore. Ask, and we will receive.

Dear Father/Mother,

I ask for minute glimpses of guidance today as I got about every moment of my living. I know that I do not ask amiss, for the guidance is there when I am ready to listen, and the guidance will be as minute, covering every detail of living, as I am willing to hear.

Be with me throughout this day. Help me to remember to ask, for guidance is something that must be sought. If I fail to ask, guidance normally won’t come through. So guide my thoughts to find the guidance that You are trying to give me when I have a willing heart.

Thank You.

Amen.

The Best Experiences Avoid the Ego

“You do not exist outside of relationship, just as your mind does not exist outside of oneness. Your experience here is but an extension of mind into a realm in which experience can occur. Your ego has made of this some¬thing different than it is. Rather than extension of mind, your experience has become a projection of ego. This can change.” (ACOL, C:31.35)

We are in relationship to all that exists, and this makes for the oneness that Jesus is extolling in this passage for today. Because we are not isolated, we need each other. Our experience in this world, with others, is an extension of mind that allows us to have experience in a physical world. We are not making a world out of ego projection any longer, and this explains why A Course of Love looks on the outer world differently from the way that A Course in Miracles explains. ACIM said that projection makes perception, and this was projection of the ego, for we were still trapped in the ego at that time, at that part of reading in ACIM. But extension of mind, what we are doing now, is a step forward, a better way, in which we join with others in relationship, and we have experiences that are much better. We are no longer isolated.

In the separation, we wanted to be isolated and alone, independent, with allies only but no companions. But we were not set up this way. We were not created this way. The center will not hold. And the ego, in its madness, probably does know this. It probably knows that it is living on borrowed time. And becomes vicious because it is threatened. This leads to nightmares in a living hell that this world can so easily become.

All of this can change, and will change, when we allow salvation to do its holy work. Salvation means many different things to different people, but in ACIM and ACOL, salvation, ultimately, means Awakening or Christ-consciousness. If we allow the glimpses of Awakening to lengthen, by a mental choice to live peaceably, we will know a tranquility that will automatically allow the glimpses to lengthen. We know many things about enlightenment, and these many things can help us now. Leave off anger and attack, judgment and needless planning, and let guidance of the inner Christ Self tell us what to do and say. This is the only way to live well.

And it will be no secret that we are healed.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would see the glimpses of enlightenment that come to me lengthen and spread out upon my world. I would reach out to others in holy relationship, and in this act, I would find You. You are my fortress from a bad world, when it is bad. You are my most important relationship, the model for all other relationships. Help me to enlarge on glimpses of enlightenment through a wholehearted welcome to You and Your children, the others with whom I am in relationship.

Be with me today to watch my steps along the road that I travel.

Thank You.

Salvation Is Simply Your Return to Your Self

“It is in this perfect sense of the perfect sanity of truth that salvation lies. Salvation is simply your return to your Self.” (ACOL, C:31.32)

We have been long away from our Self, for the Self is the Christ within, and we have allowed a foreign element to rule our minds—the ego. When we heal the separation from God, we have “merged” our non-egoic mind (and heart) with the Christ Self, and so, once again, we are truly One with God. When we spell out what is happening, or has happened, it sounds complicated, but that is not actually true. We are in our element when we merge with the Self, the Christ Self, and we are ready for the ultimate in salvation, the Awakening or Christ-consciousness.

We will know when we are drawing nigh to enlightenment. We will catch mystical glimpses in our daily lives that will enthrall us. Jesus in A Course of Love says that all of us have these glimpses. The problem in our early lives may have been that we didn’t recognize what was happening. Even if we were diligent in the practice of our religion. Now with the new revelations of A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, we have treatises that speak to our mind, our intellect, and our heart, the center of our being, and these two works will go a long way toward giving us the sustenance that we need for our souls.

So: “Salvation is simply your return to your Self.” How true! And how far away from that simplicity we have gone. Our egoic minds were quite caught in a complicated lack of true reality. Let us put all that nonsense behind us now. Let us listen to the inner Self as It speaks to us, and may we listen very, very carefully. We will be helped along by our glimpses of Awakening, but that is not the whole of it. The Self requires attention, a mindful listening that will require the best of what we have. Our intellect now has something on which to chew. Helen herself said something like this when she was scribing A Course in Miracles.

We don’t have to walk far to find our Self. With every bit of knowledge that Jesus is imparting, we are coming closer. And the way is neither far nor long. Nor is it a struggle. Struggle can accompany us on our journey without distance, but the main struggle is the recognized need to give up the ego. And once this is accomplished, there is nothing that need deter us.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would welcome salvation today as a reemergence of my Self as the controller of my life and times. I would know that the egoic basis of my life has passed away, and that all is now calm and easy. I would revel in glimpses of Awakening, and I would long for ever more frequent and intense glimpses. I pray for all of this today.

Be with me as I study and as I learn. I learn from the outer world, nature, now more than learned sources. This is fully in line with what A Course of Love says. How can I give over my mind to just what another has said? I can move closer to You only by opening up my personal mind and heart to the realities of life as lived on this earth. And as I learn from nature, I also learn from other people. Learning in the traditional sense is passing away, and in its place comes something that speaks to my soul.

Thank You.

Amen.