Live in the Now

“As you look upon yourself and judge what you do honestly, you may be tempted to wonder how you can be guiltless.  Yet consider this:  You are not guiltless in time, but in eternity.  You have ‘sinned’ in the past, but there is no past.  Always has no direction.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-13.I.3)

This is Jesus’s explanation of how everything happening is outside time, is always in the “now.”  In time, we see sequences of things going on, past to present to future.  But everything is actually simultaneous, for time is part of the illusion in which we find ourselves.

We have “sinned,” which is put in quotation marks, because a tenet of A Course in Miracles is actually that there is no sin, that we have simply made mistakes, correctable mistakes.  The idea of sin is represented as having an attracting quality, something irresistible that we want to keep repeating.  Mistakes don’t feel the same to us; we want to make amends, to correct what we have done wrong, to seek forgiveness if necessary.

Time proceeds from past to present to future, but when we concentrate on the moment we are in right now, we are truly living.  And this “now” moment is often seen as a precursor to Awakening.  When we learn to live more and more of our moments without reference to time, we are coming closer to the ideal to which Jesus is leading us:  Awakening.

We have done things wrong in the past; we have made mistakes.  And we will want to seek forgiveness, from ourselves as well as others, for those mistakes.  We do not have to beg forgiveness of God, according to A Course in Miracles, for God has never condemned us; He has simply seen us as his innocent children.  But the primary thrust of ACIM is the matter of forgiveness, and we would do well to consider the primacy of forgiveness early on in our journey without distance.

Make amends.  Seek to right wrongs.  And then know that the forgiveness that you seek for yourself, you must also offer to others.  This is the way of A Course in Miracles.  This is our way home.  We must learn to see the innocence of our brothers as they confront us.  Everyone is truly doing the best that he can, given his degree of understanding.  And we are all mad in this world to one extent or another.  We should not, therefore, underestimate the extent of our brother’s insanity. 

Good Morning!

“How you wake is the sign of how you have used sleep.  To whom did you give it?  Under which teacher did you place it?  Whenever you wake dispiritedly, it was not given to the Holy Spirit.  Only when you awaken joyously have you utilized sleep according to His purpose.  You can indeed be ‘drugged’ by sleep, if you have misused it on behalf of sickness.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-8.IX.4)

We need, as this quotation says, to give our sleep over unreservedly to the Holy Spirit.  Considering this dictate, and considering what little willingness we really do have to have when we follow this guidance, is a good way to fall into a relaxed frame of mind—the very best way in which to fall asleep soundly and with peace.

Not all of us are morning people, and some will continue to wake up, sensing that they have almost been “drugged.”  But this is not the way that Jesus would point out to us.  He would have us wake up in good spirits, ready to meet the day and its experiences with ease.  Let us try to think along these lines tonight, as we prepare for sleep.

What might we have to do to prepare for such a sleep, a sleep given over to our Guide, the Holy Spirit?  Quiet time spent reading and reflecting is good; it will orient us away from fear, as Jesus tells us elsewhere in A Course in Miracles.  He would have us lull our minds into peace that speaks to our heart.  The heart does not need the “proof” that the mind does, and so our doubts are quietened.

What do you do in the morning if you awaken “drugged”?  Basically, we try again the next night, because the sense of overwhelming sleepiness is a sign that we are undernourished by the Holy Spirit.  He will set us aright.  We need no other Guide.

Forgive the World

“Only your heart can lead you to the forgiveness that must overcome judgment.  A forgiven world is a world whose foundation has changed from fear to love.  Only from this world can your special function be fulfilled and bring the light to those who still live in darkness.”  (A Course of Love, C:16.8)

It is a good question to wonder how we can change from love to fear in our thinking.  And the answer is one word:  forgiveness.  Forgiveness will overcome judgment, and above all we need to overcome judgment of ourselves and our brothers and sisters

We don’t really have anything to forgive, for we are looking out on a world of illusions.  Nothing has actually happened at all.  We are living a stage play that has no repercussions on our inner essence.  Only those things that come from love are real, for God is Love, and His reality is the only true reality.

In the ethos of A Course of Love, we let our hearts find the forgiveness that our minds might deny.  Spend a while today in your heart, and see if it doesn’t make a difference in how the day is viewed.  We will, if we let our hearts make the decision, find forgiveness of ourselves and others, and thus look out on a forgiven world.

There is no better way to live.  Just recognize, when someone attacks you, that they are being insane, that their reaction is pure insanity.  And one would not blame a certifiably insane person for the strange reactions that that person exhibits.  We would know that the person is not fully responsible for words and deeds, and we would forgive easily. Our brother or sister who is certifiably sane is due the same response.  In the opinion of both A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, the attacking brother or sister is not actually sane at all, but mad in a mad world.  And so forgiveness becomes easier for us.

Fully Experiencing the Will of God

“To fulfill the Will of God perfectly is the only joy and peace that can be fully known, because it is the only function that can be fully experienced.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-8.III.2)

This statement is the statement of a man of God.  Jesus gets his joy from fulfilling what he understands to be God’s will.  And he asks nothing less but that we do the same.

It is not hard, this following of God.  The guidance comes through precisely all the time.  The only question is whether or not we will turn into that guidance.  The best way to live is to tune in.  Then our days and nights develop a substantial flow, one event into the next, with ease and grace.  We fret less; we worry not at all.

These are our best days, the days that we follow guidance and in so doing develop a flow.  Ask that today be such a day for you.  If you are intent on following what you perceive to be the will of God, you will not be disappointed in the extraordinary day that will be afforded you.

Jesus is on the verge of introducing us in A Course in Miracles to the Holy Spirit.  Up to now, he has focused on asking us to imagine what he, Jesus, might say to us, and then following his guidance unfailingly.  He will not leave us now, though, if we are willing to keep doubts at bay, and consider that he is serious when he says that he will come to us in response to “one unequivocal call.”  He also says that we can imagine that we hold hands with him, and he says that this will be “no idle fantasy.”

But now Jesus is introducing us to the Holy Spirit, an introduction that may be unnecessary to some of us.  The Holy Spirit is, in A Course in Miracles, our Guide to right action.  He is also called the Universal Inspiration, and references to Him in ACIM are always capitalized. 

We need to have good days, like pearls on a string, blessed days.  And here we have the key:  follow guidance.  We will not be led astray.

This Too Shall Pass

“When you are anxious, realize that anxiety comes from the capriciousness of the ego, and know this need not be.  You can be as vigilant against the ego’s dictates as for them.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-4.IV.4)

Anxiety dogs our steps, for anxiety is the most prevalent form of fear.  We have an ego that is out of control, has always been out of control.  And so we can easily recognize capriciousness when confronted with anxiety, for there seems to be no rhyme or reason to it.  We do, surely, attach reasons to our anxiety, but this is grasping at straws.  Twisting in the wind.  We know, deep inside, that something that is in us, but not real—the ego—is calling the shots.  And we would not have it so.

We can be vigilant against letting anxiety turn our days into a living hell.  It doesn’t take much vigilance, really.  If we never let the anxiety escalate, if we go within at the first signs of agitation.  Turn to the inner Self Who knows best how to turn aside the calling of the ego.  Don’t wait, hoping the uneasy feeling will subside.  Go within directly, immediately.  And watch the see if you don’t sense help from a Higher Power as you go within.

Being able to give up anxiety is powerful motivation.  Who can be at the best when confronted with the verge of panic?  Nobody.  Ever.  And so we seek, once again, to turn aside from the ego.  We don’t actively “resist” the ego, for to do is to make resistance real, and the act of turning away too strident.  The ego becomes strong in strife, and strife is what we have when we seek to force a solution by shouting “no” at our anxiety, “no” at the ego.

Just turn aside, gently.  Meditate.  Pray.  Write in a journal.  The way will open to a smooth pathway once again.

If agitation doesn’t go away, then perhaps it has something to say to us.  The ego will try to speak to us, but what it says is only confused thinking, best left alone.  Don’t try to make sense out of its ranting.  You can’t do it.  It is impossible.

Be gentle with yourself when in the throes of an egoic attack.  This too shall pass.  And so it shall.

Our Worth Is Established by God

“Your worth is not established by teaching or learning.  Your worth is established by God.  As long as you dispute this everything you do will be fearful, particularly any situation that lends itself to the belief in superiority and inferiority. Teachers must be patient and repeat their lessons until they are learned.  I am willing to do this, because I have no right to set your learning limits for you.  Again,–nothing you do or think or wish or make is necessary to establish your worth.  This point is not debatable except in delusions.  Your ego is never at stake because God did not create it.  Your spirit is never at stake because He did.  Any confusion on this point is delusional, and no form of devotion is possible as long as this delusion lasts.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-4.I.7)

An important quotation, because so many of us struggle with confusion over self-esteem.  As the ego manages self-esteem, we will never measure up.  As our spirit measures self-esteem, we cannot help but measure up.

And this quotation tells us why:  Our worth is established by God.  We don’t have to “do” in order to merit His approval.  He has made us perfect, and only the extent to which we have varied from this epitome, in our dream, is what needs remedying.  We are worthy, still perfect in our essence.  And this, in itself, must lead to a very serene sense of self-actualization in our depths.

We constantly compare ourselves to each other.  This is wrong.  All talents will one day be shared equally, and, in the meantime, when someone else has what we lack, we too have something that he/she lacks.  All of this comparison leads to either a sense of superiority or inferiority.  And to demoralization.  There seems no way out.

But there is a way out.  Simply repeat to yourself, “My worth is established by God.”  If this affirmation doesn’t work for you, then commune with our Maker to ask what and how you might believe what Jesus has said is true. 

We need to get over the delusion that we have to merit approval from God.  We will stay confused as long as we think that egoic ideas are separating us from our Creator.  It is true that, in the illusion, the dream, we are separate from God—but in reality, we have never left.

There Are No Idle Thoughts

“There are no idle thoughts.  All thinking produces form at some level.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-2.VI.9)

There is a very serious warning in the quotation for this evening.  Our minds do wander, and when the mind wanders it produces what we erroneously think are “idle” thoughts.  This is not so, as Jesus says to us here. 

We cannot understand what he is saying, but we can get an intimation by thinking of our nighttime dreams.  Form seems very real in nighttime dreams, but when we awaken in the morning, the dreams frequently vanish from our minds, and we accord those dreams no reality at all.  The form is real, though, and perhaps this type of form is what Jesus is seeing.

Jesus has told us that we live in a dream, even in waking reality.  We are living illusions.  And we think that we live in a solid world, a world of form.  We touch, we knock on hard surfaces, and we get resistance.  But our bodies are just as much an illusion as the table that we rap upon. 

Perhaps form in our idle thoughts is like unto this.  Such secular writers as Jane Roberts, in the books channeled by an entity named “Seth,” have said the same.  Our thoughts blossom out in all directions, according to Seth.  And form is not far behind, though we cannot see that happen.

So doesn’t it behoove us to rid ourselves of what we have been calling “idle” thoughts?  Wouldn’t it be better to think along better lines?  Wouldn’t it be better to fill our minds with thoughts that we imagine are like unto those that we imagine God “thinks”?  Certainly the encouragement that we give fantasies can be seen as a false way to spend our time.  Fantasies are not true, but we indulge in them.  We even fall into fantasy when we are contemplating or meditating.  Our minds stay so busy.

Rein in your thoughts today.  Don’t let them get ahead of yourself.  The best thing that we can do is to think as God would think.  Ask Him what He thinks, and see if your imagination doesn’t give you an Answer.

Perfect Love

“Know first that this is fear.

Fear arises from lack of love.

The only remedy for lack of love is perfect love.

Perfect love is the Atonement.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-2.VI.7)

Perfect love is the “undoing” of what has been an albatross around our necks for eons.  We are moving toward Awakening, and as we take steps there, and we will fear less as we love more.  This is the best way, the only way to welcome God into our lives.  We must ask for help if we find our propensity to love, weak.  And if we find ourselves in fearful states of mind all too often.  These two characteristics—fearful, anxious feelings and a lack of love while experiencing those feelings—are easily overcome when we go to God.  If tangled up or mixed up, go to God.  He will take you into His arms and comfort and heal you.

Can we get perfect love by willing it?  No.  That is why this favorite quotation is so puzzling for so many of us.  We want perfect love, because we so dislike the fearful feelings that we experience.  This desire is the practical motivation.  But perfect love is held out to us by God Himself, and we are led to that eventuality when we open ourselves to Jesus and the Holy Spirit.  Jesus was the essence of the Atonement, his gift to us. 

The Atonement as gifted us by Jesus, as seen by A Course in Miracles, is not a sacrificial gift. Jesus would have us see the wholly benign lesson of the crucifixion, and then look beyond that to the resurrection.  The resurrection is seen as the promise of eternal life to all of us.  And whether or not we can accept that the resurrection really happened, Jesus still welcomes us.  He does not need intellectual assent.  He only needs the heartfelt response, the response from our inner being where we do not need intellectual proof.

Ask God today to allow the experience of perfect love to come to you.  It will come first in fleeting glimpses, but then, as time passes and we remain true to God, the times of perfect love extend.  We know perfect love, and the fears and anxieties of daily life drop from our experience.

Guidance

“Only your mind can produce fear.  It does so whenever it is conflicted in what it wants, producing inevitable strain because wanting and doing are discordant.  This can be corrected only by accepting a unified goal.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-2.VI.6)

We know that we experience fear, but we may not have blamed our own conflicted minds.  We may have tried to sense that something outside of ourselves is causing our anguish.

It is not so.  The conflict is all internal.  We want to do something, but we think that we ought to do something else.  This produces the strain.  It can often be a counterpoint to following guidance.  We often want to do things that are not in our best interests, and guidance will show us something different when confronted by such a confused state of mind.  We listen to our “ought’s,” if we are smart, and in the ought’s we learn what guidance is really saying.  At this point in reading A Course in Miracles, we can assume that Jesus’s wishes and our guidance are identical.

How can he know so much?  We cannot answer this question.  But he does not lead us astray in ACIM.  He knows fully what we are about in this world.  His entity is far above our limited, finite minds.

We need a unified goal, and this we get when we realize that God’s will and our own, real, will, are actually identical.  Later on, when we are considering the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we will learn that He chooses for us.  We don’t know rightly what to say or to do, but He does.  And when we get into the flow of following Him, we experience a flow to our days that assures us that all is well.  With this flow, we learn anew that Jesus, as well as the Holy Spirit, both know what is best for us.  Our lives go better when we are in the flow of following such guidance. 

We can do no better.  When we follow guidance consistently, our experience will prove to us that doing so is expedient.  At first we may balk, but we come to know that a unified goal, seen in flow, is what changes what we want and what we ought to do into the same.

Ask! The Only Thing to Do if Uncertain

“Before you choose to do anything, ask me if your choice is in accord with mine.  If you are sure that it I, there will be no fear.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-2.VI.4)

Of course!  Here Jesus is speaking before he has introduced us sufficiently to the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives.  He wants us to imagine asking him if any given action is in accord with wishes that he would have.  Is the action loving?  Is it kind?  Is it free of attack?  Questions such as these will put us on the right track.

By what right does Jesus ask us to consider his wishes in regard to any action we take?  He is in charge of the Sonship, and he is attuned to the miracle-mindedness and the revelation-readiness of all of us.  He is our leader, our teacher, our guide.  And so it is not foreign to consider his wishes when we want to make good decisions.

What a lovely way to rid ourselves of fear!  We need only be sure that our choices are in accord with what Jesus would want.  Can we be assured of ridding ourselves of fear if we do this?  Jesus says so, and his word is enough for me, for I believe that he did indeed channel A Course in Miracles.  And I do believe that he is in charge of the Sonship.  So my course is clear:  I will ask, internally, what I think Jesus would do, and I will take this guidance as my own.

Many people in traditional Christian faith have recommended that individuals ask, “What would Jesus do?,” when confronted with any dilemma.  The words of A Course in Miracles here suggest something very similar.  It is words like this that puts ACIM in direct lineage from the Bible.

Never fear that Jesus will give us something more to worry about, if we get the indication that what we are about to do is out of line with what Jesus would wish.   He is a gentle teacher, and he always means us well.  He will not to anything to raise our anxiety level, and therefore our fear (and our worry). 

So ask when confronted with dilemmas.  Imagine what Jesus would say.  And we will be well-guided.  Depend on it.

Miracles Offer Peaceful Love to Us

“Peace is an attribute in you.  You cannot find it outside.  Illness is some form of external searching.  Health is inner peace.  It enables you to remain unshaken by lack of love from without and capable, through your acceptance of miracles, of correcting the conditions proceeding from lack of love in others.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-2.I.5)

We have peace internally, but it is layered over with turmoil, anxieties, and guilty feelings, and thus we cannot access the feeling of peace on a constant basis.  But we have to look within, or we are constantly swayed by the vicissitudes of what we see, what we project onto, a suffering world.  We project turmoil when we are not looking deeply enough within, deep where the peace really is.

When we have raised our vibration sufficiently to find that peace that is within, we will cease searching outside ourselves for solace.  And with this external searching ended, so will the experience of illness fall away.  When we are at peace in our minds and hearts, experiencing inner peace, we will be healthy children of God.

Does it really matter if others don’t love us as we think they ought?  If we have a strong enough sense of God’s peace within, we will not be shaken by the lack of love without.  And we will encounter a lack of love without, for the world does not treat kindly those who are externally seeking for love from it.  This world is not set up to give you peace; only our turning inward can do that for us.  And turning inward does, in fact, create a wellspring of health and well-being that will indeed be a miracle.  A miracle of healing.  Our conflict will be at an end.  We will be home in God.  And what more could we wish for this day, as the evening draws to a close?

We need a remedy from God when we perceive a lack of love in others, love that we think we need, because otherwise we are all alone and lonely beings in a world of chaos.  We must recognize that we cannot depend on the outside world to “be there” for us always.  More often than not, the outside world will not be there for us.  Of course, projection makes perception, and so as we walk farther along the pathway to salvation and Awakening, we will project bad things less often.  Seeing God’s peace, inwardly, is our way to salvation and Awakening.  And then whatever vestiges of unkindness we continue to project will lose their efficacy.  We will indeed live in a new and different dimension, and, miraculously, our sisters and brothers in this world will begin to treat us better.

Practice the Presence of God

“A sense of separation from God is the only lack you really need correct.  This sense of separation would never have arisen if you had not distorted your perception of truth, and had thus perceived yourself as lack.  The idea of order of needs arose because, having made this fundamental error, you had already fragmented yourself into levels with different needs.  As you integrate you become one, and your needs become one accordingly.  Unified needs lead to unified action, because this produces a lack of conflict.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-1.VI.2)

Which of us would not want a lack of conflict?  We can realize, as the Workbook says, “There is another way of looking at this.”  There is also a way of thinking of God that will immediately quell conflict.  If we place our minds on the concept of God, Himself, we will know inner peace.  This is not the only way, of course, but this thought process is the most direct.  We quiet the ego by thinking of God, and in the quietude we live above conflict.  We will overlook the conflict.

We are very conflicted beings, very moody and very antagonistic, initially, to listening to what will give us peace.  After all, we have invested a lot in the ego, and the ego says that it will protect us.  This is not true, of course, because the ego and egotistical thought processes only lead to more conflict and turmoil—exactly what we need to move from.  We are not moving away from conflict now, because we all too often think that we are really living when the drama is high.  This is the insidious thing.

We need to practice the Presence of God in our daily lives, from moment to moment (when we remember).  This Presence does not have to be a constant thing for us, and indeed, it cannot be, for our minds are made of short-term attention spans.  Yet, the more we can welcome God’s Presence in our lives, the better our lives will become.

We are living on different levels, fragmented parts of ourselves that know no better.  We do not have to have multiple personalities to recognize that we partake of this phenomenon; this fragmentation is rampant in our culture, for we have forgotten God as our unifying Force.  He will solve the problems that we think we have; He will show us how to rise above the chaos of the world. 

Wholly Lovable & Wholly Loving

“You are the work of God, and His work is wholly lovable and wholly loving.  This is how a man must think of himself in his heart, because this is what he is.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-1.III.2)

We often don’t think well of ourselves.  As we get into the Course, and realize how restricted our real lives have been by the ego, we realize that we want something more.  But we don’t love the person that we are; in fact, we often come close to hatred of self, and with that can go hatred of our brothers and of God, even.

What do we do instead?  We must see that God sees a being in us, a creature in us, that we cannot see.  What he sees is wholly lovable, for this true Self never departed from Him in separation and developed traits that seem, even to us, to be undesirable.  This real Self is perfect in and of itself as a Child of God.  We are bade, in this quotation, to think of ourselves as God does, as “wholly lovable and wholly loving. How might we surround our being with love?  We systematically remove from our awareness any vestiges of ego, as soon as these vestiges present themselves to our awareness.  We don’t delay in thinking that we are lovable and loving, even with the ego still risen in our minds, but we know that we are living a dream that has become a nightmare—and we want out.  When we let the ego wither away, we sense that we are right in our hearts, right with God.  And our inner denunciations of self drop away.  We know that even if we cannot see our goodness, God can and God does.  And we believe Jesus’s words in the Course, saying that we are lovable and loving.

We have to trust, and that may not come easily.  We have spent our lifetimes up to now in being skeptical of the world and the individuals we have met in it.  Oh, of course, we have loved sometimes—but even that love has often turned to hatred.  And so we have fallen out of even our own favor, and we imagine that we have fallen out of God’s favor as well.  We have not fallen out of God’s favor, for He sees us as we really are—His perfect Son. 

Now Jesus wants us to see into our hearts, where we do not need the type of proof that our minds demand.  Our heart, if we listen to it, will tell us that Love is our very being, for we are One with God.  And it is this unity that is the basis for our whole new experience of this world.  God is with us; Jesus is with us; the Holy Spirit is with us. 

Miracles & Revelation

“Revelation unites you directly with God.  Miracles unite you directly with your brother.  Neither emanates from consciousness, but both are experienced there.  Consciousness is the state that induces action, though it does not inspire it.  You are free to believe what you choose, and what you do attests to what you believe.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-1.II.1)

The first aspect of this quotation delineates revelation vs. miracles, and explains the difference in our unity with God, first, and then our unity with our brother.  God is responsible for revelation; we are not.  He communicates to us by revelation, including, sometimes, the experience of Awakening—Awakening that does not last.  He shows us the end, where we are headed.  And Jesus’s book, A Course in Miracles, gives us the means to get to that end of Awakening.  Revelation is not on the same level as miracles.  Under Jesus’s guidance, we perform miracles for our brother, and, in turn, our brother performs miracles for us.  They are, in that sense, reciprocal, unlike revelation.  Revelation always proceeds from God to us, never the other way around.

We are consciousness embodied.  We are alive in our minds, and we experience our projections from mind as perceptions of this world.  We experience revelation and miracles from this consciousness.  We are led to act in this world through what our consciousness says to do.  If we allow ourselves to be guided by the Holy Spirit, then our consciousness has a divine Master.  If we allow our consciousness to be guided by the ego, we have feet of clay.  There is no in between.

These ideas, above, are central to A Course in Miracles.  We have a learning task before us, for until we have the theological undergirding of the Course, we cannot master what it says.  Our mind will be trained as we do the Workbook lessons.  The more theoretical aspects of the Course are presented in this, the Text.  We likewise need to master that theory.  There is no other sure way of catching all the means that will lead us to the end of Awakening, the means to the end.

We must await revelation from God.  And we must await Jesus’s nod as to which miracles we are to perform for our brother.  We will get used to the fact that we are not in control anymore, as soon as we start on the road of relinquishing the ego.

Miracles Represent Freedom from Fear

“Miracles represent freedom from fear.  ‘Atoning’ means ‘undoing.’  The undoing of fear is an essential part of the Atonement value of miracles.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-1.I.26)

Have you ever felt conflicted and agitated?  In turmoil.  Of course.  All of us experience such things on a regular basis.  And have you surrendered, turned it all over to God, and quickly felt a sure sense that all goes well?  This is a miracle.  This is our freedom from fear, from conflict, from agitation, from turmoil. 

We are undoing the flow of events as we have known them—or, more precisely, the Holy Spirit within us is undoing that flow of events for us.  And with this expansive change we give up fear.  We have no reason to fear when we are surrendered, completely and totally.  And the guidance that we will receive will be sure, for we ask with an open heart.

Ask for a quiet sleep tonight.  Let this miracle be shown you.  If sleeplessness comes instead, ask what you need to resolve with God tonight.  There is always a reason for sleeplessness.  The same for sleep.  The miracle is always right on the beam.  We don’t have to fear that God will not have His way with us when we have opened ourselves to Him.  Ask for the undoing of fear now.  This will be right in line with accepting the Atonement for ourselves.  And accepting Jesus’s contribution to the Sonship is essential.

Jesus’s contribution is not seen in A Course in Miracles as being the atoning nature of his shed blood.  This sacrificial nature is denied entirely.  We are, instead, to look to the resurrection and all that it promises us about eternal life.  If you have let the intellect intrude, and wonder, “How could this be?,” then suspend disbelief a bit and let your heart tell you what you need to know.  A miracle will replace disbelief.  Not that you will ever resolve intellectual doubt that easily, but a mystical understanding will encompass the whole for you.  You will know that Jesus’s Atonement for us is real.  Whether or not we intellectually grasp it.

Miracles are sure.  Miracles are certain.  And if they do not occur, then something has gone awry.  We have either turned to attack, turned to judgment, or turned to making plans against contingencies to come.  These three aspects of our “normal” experience are all that it takes to hide the miracle from us.  And when we turn aside from this trio, we will wonderingly see that all was not lost for us, just misplaced. 

Prayer – Love – Miracles

“Prayer is the medium of miracles.  It is a means of communication of the created with the Creator.  Through prayer love is received, and through miracles love is expressed.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-1.I.11)

We need prayer more than God needs it from us, though He is said to be lonely when the minds He created do not commune with Him.  Since God is within (All is within), then we are communing with our innermost depths when we pray.  We will not be disappointed.  If we turn to God whenever we feel tangled up or mixed up, we will find solace for our aching souls.

We get this solace because we are feeling love from God, and love is the great resolver of everything that has gone wrong or might go wrong.  This is not a trite expression of faith; it is the way that life is set up.  We may be blessed without communing with God, for He loves us still, but we will not feel so blessed as we will with complete and utter surrender to His way and will.

We ask Jesus what miracles we are to perform, once we have received this all-encompassing love from God Himself.  We don’t just think up good deeds for others, and then seek to do those good deeds.  Even the most altruistic impulse of ours could easily be the wrong thing to do, if we haven’t received guidance about that action.  Ask Jesus, or the Holy Spirit, what we are to do about any impulses for altruistic action that we have.  Is doing something a right thing?  Or would it be better to wait on His guidance?  We will get our answers when we stop long enough to surrender to a Higher Will, and to do the bidding that we receive.  We will not have to wait long; the Holy Spirit can speak to us, and will, when we ask from a tranquil and easy heart.

Why is it this way?  We do not know enough to make decisions on our own.  When we attempt to do so, we are attempting to develop our own judgments about a given issue or person.  And our judgment will be wrong, for we don’t see the whole picture—past, present, and future.  But there is One—the Holy Spirit—Who does see that whole picture.  His judgments are always true.  And He speaks from that loving judgment to all of us who ask for guidance.  We are set on our way through this meandering world by starting the day right by asking.  Always asking.  And we continue to ask as the day unfolds.  This way what we do and say, and even what we think, are miracles of expediency in our journey through life.  We walk surely, for we have a sure Guide.

Living Extraordinary Lives

This is to be a quiet movement at the borderline. A movement that gently normalizes the extraordinary as ordinary, as natural, and as a return of the feminine.  Mirari

Mary here seems to say that we can live extraordinary lives as naturally as the sun rises every day.  A Course of Love says something very similar about “extraordinary” lives, that when ordinary people are seen to be living in an extraordinary way that others will be encouraged to do likewise.

Mary goes farther, though, to say that extraordinary can become the norm.  We are allowing the feminine to rise in importance in our world, and it is the mother/wife/sister/daughter in cooperation with men, too, who will accomplish much in this new world.  It is natural to women to be nurturing, and now we can see that women are going to nourish things that have been out of reach before.

Ask what we—both women and men—can say and do today that will make a lasting difference in our world.  We need meaningful change, reconciliation with our brothers and sisters, loving attitudes to inform all our ways.

Be among the pioneers.  There is room for all.

Wonder

“Here, in our time of bringing the miracle to mystery, we come as the feminine, bearing the way of Mirari—the way of wonder.”  Mirari

“Mirari” means “wonder,” and in this newly received book from Mary of Nazareth, Mari Perron talk intimately with her and shares Mary’s revelations.  We are entering a time when the feminine face of God will be more evident.  His two faces, the masculine and the feminine, will join together to assist us in creating a new world.

We often want to explain away every miracle.  This is just not possible, and it is to our benefit that it is not.  Wonder is a legitimate way to interact with the world.  Keeping the mystery alive is good for the soul.

When we are skeptics, we don’t see miracles.  They are just not there for us.  But when we open the mind and heart, our understanding deepens, and we don’t cast aspersions on what we are viewing that we don’t understand.

Let us open our mind and heart today to let God speak to us in mystery.  Let Him have His way with us.  Even seek to let Mary talk to us.

Healing

“Grieve your dark days only to awaken from them with greater depths of compassion, with greater awareness of love’s many expressions, and let them rise from you, and with you, into time free of the concreteness of the past.”  Mirari

We all need to let the past go as we walk through life’s onward passages.  But all too often we don’t do this; we cling to what has been the past, often clinging even to what pained us the most.

Yet when we walk farther along, living in love, we find that we can relinquish the past.  Our love has healed us.  And we are happy.

Let the past go.  We will hold in our subconscious the teachings of the past that have healed.  But let the healing of the present proceed unencumbered by our past pain.

Living Christ

“When you pray to God, you are praying to that part of yourself that is divine, that which we call the living Christ who lives in you.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 11:II

We are not just praying to our little personality when we pray.  We have a larger Self who is merged with God, and this larger Self is a part, but only a part, of the Christ.  Christ is a plural term, not meant in this era for only Jesus.  We partake of divinity, too.

Know that turning inward is not praying to an external God, for God is not external to ourselves.  We are a part of Him, always and forever, even when we are living with the ego in a “fallen” state.  We gain insights by turning inward to the God Who dwells deep inside.  We know better how to live.

Ask today how to proceed in life.  Let our intuition be our Guide, for God is speaking in the silence to us through our intuition.

One with God

“Meditate with serene joy on the fact that you are one with God:  that you are that of God which extended in form to be able to know yourself.  You are God in God, literally.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 11:II

Life is formed from the inside out, with God directing every move whenever we will let Him.  We get nudges just all the time, and it is only when we resist that our life falls on rocks.  God is living through us, though we are endowed with a mind that is finite, and so we can only intuit Him in His fullness.

This must be the only way that God could enjoy His reality, His existence in untold universes and beyond form as well.  We have been told in numerous spiritual works that God is at play in the universe, that He is experiencing bliss as He looks upon us—and even when we fall short.  When we fall short, God knows that it is a temporary failing, because He knows what the end result will be—union with Him, bliss for all creations, us among them.

Say a prayer of thankfulness today for the Intelligence that created this way of experiencing His totality.

Love & Miracles

“Since that part of God that dwells in you is as powerful as God Himself in its totality, then certainly you can do miracles by invoking the divine aspect of yourself or getting events to be harmoniously oriented in love.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 11:II

What does this mean? It does not mean that we are as powerful as God. The divine aspect of us “in its totality” is what we are talking about. And with this divine aspect we can work miracles that are prompted. We don’t work miracles that we think are well-advised, for this is the one way to get ourselves and others into trouble. We wait for guidance, and then, almost without knowing, we are in a miracle-minded state. From there it is easy to bring about the miracles that we are asked to perform.

If our lives are flowing in the harmony of love, we are right where we ought to be. We are living joyously. We are in tune with the Infinite, God Himself. If we are depressed in spirit, our good deeds will be tainted, for we will bring our suffering into them. If we want to live well, doing good for others while we ourselves are listening to guidance, we need to remain centered in wellness. This is not so hard to do when we are living with the thought of love in our mind and heart.

Love will transform us so that miracles will light not only our path, but those in our circle of family, friends, acquaintances–and even the larger world.

Lift our eyes to the heavens. We will be lifted up at the same time.

Forgiven World

Note:  I am returning with this post to Sebastian Blaksley’s received work from angels, Jesus, and Mary.  His work is profoundly meditative, and if we let the heart rule, we will derive great benefit from reading his Choose Only Love—out now in four volumes of a projected seven.

“Keep in mind during this journey that the world is a great illusion; and that the day will come when the veil will be lifted and in the forgiven world you will see the true creation of God. . . .”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 1:III

We can have hope from reading this quotation.  In the real world, the forgiven world, we are no longer living in illusion.  And we are living in love.

Sebastian Blaksley has published an excellent article on the forgiven world, the world that love rules, in Miracles magazine.  He addresses the confusion that there has been in the Course in Miracles and Course of Love communities about what “illusion” actually means.

An idea is not an illusion, and in my belief we are all living ideas in the Mind of God.  With the ego, we spun illusions willy-nilly just all the time.  Not so when we have moved into the real world.  Our ideas, based as they are in God’s prompting, are real and good.  We have passed beyond the confusion that the egoic world made for us.  We are living better, even if the times we live through now seem perilous. 

Our hearts are filled with God’s love, and this love transforms everything.

Reincarnation?

“Often, when you say you ‘fall in love,’ it is just that you have come into contact with another field of energy that happens to fit, hand-in-glove, with the very patterns of consciousness that you carry in the depth of your being.

“Old memories of other incarnations are triggered when you visit a certain physical location.  And the emotion feels so good and warm in the heart, you think, ‘Surely this is where I must live on the planet.  This is with whom I must spend my life.’”  (“The Way of Transformation,” WOM, Chapter 17, Page 210)

These ideas are certainly interesting; they explain a lot about what we are attracted to in our lives.  We can look for such patterns in our past and see that Jesus has a point.  We do have a history in other realms of those individuals with whom we feel intense rapport and romantic love.  I believe this, and this quotation seems to confirm it.

We don’t need to believe in reincarnation to support these ideas.  A Course in Miracles counsels its teachers not to take a stand on reincarnation, because it is such a controversial issue, and we don’t want to limit our usefulness.  Giving up the ego (ACIM) and establishing a new identity (A Course of Love) are enough to keep us occupied on Earth.  We don’t have to bring in controversy that might divide us. 

Know that there are explanations for what we are drawn to in our lives.  We might all benefit from reflecting on the quotation and wondering how and why it might seem apropos to us.

Unlimited Life

“You then, are Christ, playing in the world—unlimited, unfettered, unvictimized by anything.”  (“The Way of Transformation, The Way of Mastery, Chapter 13, Page 165)

When Jesus welcomes into the embrace of the “Christ,” I am comforted that all of us are going to be on the right pathway. It will just take time for all to come into the fold. When we decide to get right with God, we are taking the first step toward a new life–a life that is “unlimited, unfettered, unvictimized.”

All of us welcome this change. Some have experienced it already. But for those who still feel caught by the struggles of the world, with quotations such as this we can take heart. There is a way out of the maze. We can live lives of great value, enjoying what we do, attracting that which gives us peace.

Reading has been a prime avenue for me in order to try to get right with God. A Course in Miracles taught me much–but so did the other newly channeled works by Jesus. Jesus is active in our world, of course. We just can’t see him. He is just as active on our behalf now as he was 2,000 years ago.

Resolve to live an unlimited life today. Resolve to take our places in the new world that is unfolding. We still can’t see it, but it is there. We have been caught up in a drama, and we are still. But beyond the drama of conflict and struggle is a new world, created by us with help from the Unseen.

Be sure to offer thanks for each bit of encouragement the Other Side gives us.

Imagination

“For remember an ancient truth we once gave you:  You cannot imagine that which you have not experienced, for imagination is the picturing in the conscious mind.  That picturing must come forth from something.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Chapter 17, Page 202)

A difficult concept, but I have read things that will elucidate this quotation. A Course in Miracles says that we the past will roll up like a carpet when we are through with the world as we know it, that we are revisiting the past. Neale Donald Walsch’s Conversations with God says that all reality is like a CD from which we choose experiences; if the experience is not already in the Mind of God, on that CD, we cannot experience it.

Do we see, then, how imagination must have something to cling to? We cannot go outside the Mind of God, of Whom we are a part. And if God did not first “think” it, we could not have it in our experience.

Give our imagination free rein today. See what comes out that we would like to experience, for we can have it–if not immediately, then somewhere in the eons ahead of us, for we live in an eternity.

The imagination works best when we are in revelry, sitting quietly and feeling peaceful.

See quietly today and see what comes up into the conscious mind and heart.

PLANNING

Note: After today, I’m going to take a little break from posting until after the holidays. I wish for all of you a good December.

Note: Published in Miracles Magazine (Jon Mundy, publisher).

by Celia Hales

If you. . .make plans against uncertainties to come. . .the mind is sick.”  (ACIM, W-136.20:2)

“The Christ in you has no need to plan. . .let life itself be your chosen way. . . .” (ACOL, T2:10.19)

“The healed mind does not plan.  It does not mean that it does not structure a day.  . . But it does not plan what the day shall be for.  It merely surrenders into Love. . . .”  (“The Way of Transformation,” WOM, Lesson 30, Page 345)

            I had long puzzled over the prohibition found in A Course in Miracles about planning.  The Way of Mastery clarifies.  The type of planning that is meant is not the “structure” of a day; instead, it is “what the day shall be for.”

            What a difference this newer statement by Jesus makes!  I could not see, earlier, how we could avoid making decisions about upcoming activities.  But I do see how we should avoid deciding with our little mind what the day “shall be for.”    We have guidance for that!  In ACIM, it is the guidance of the Holy Spirit; in A Course of Love, it is the guidance of the Christ-Self.

            I see divine guidance as a better way of talking about intuition.  It is the way of going within.  And this way takes many decisions out of our hands.  Letting intuition guide us is a much easier way to live.  We live fully in the present, but we go with the nudges that decide our next steps, one step at a time.

            This advice means that we let life tell us what to do next.  This way of proceeding is the “flow” that is often championed in New Age thought. 

            I know from experience that an intuitive, flowing way of going through a day is a much happier way to live.  And ACIM says that our happiness and our function are one.  (W-66) We cannot have this happiness without Love, and WOM identifies surrendering into Love in order to determine what a day is for.

            We thus follow God-originating guidance through intuitive nudges informed by Love, moment by moment.

            I can witness that this very practical advice from Jesus works amazingly well in daily life.

New Book Published on A Course of Love by This Blogger

To my viewers on this blog:  Over six years in the making, this book has been carefully written and revised many times.   It focuses on A Course of Love, but also includes A Course in Miracles.  Thank you for considering reading.  Love, Celia

Available from Amazon.  Read free with Kindle Unlimited membership; or $5.99 to buy e-book; or $8.95 for paperback.  Previously unpublished material.  265 pages.

DESCRIPTION from the Amazon web site:

Being Who You Are: Pondering A Course of Love

by Celia Hales

Being Who You Are offers contemplative reflections on A Course of Love that are meant for readers of A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love as well as newcomers to the material.

A Course of Love answers questions that spiritual seekers may still have despite earnest study of A Course in Miracles. Being Who You Are highlights these answers in words carefully chosen for clarity and understanding.

Being Who You Are presents A Course of Love as a heartfelt continuation of the coursework provided in the more mind-focused A Course in Miracles. Chapters concentrate on the following themes: love; fear; holy vs. special relationships; the nature of true reality; mind, heart, and wholeheartedness; unity and relationship; Christ-consciousness/Awakening; separation from God healed; Jesus and Mary; and the elevated Self of form. Tender human interest stories round out the ten comprehensive chapters.

This book, by the long-time blogger at “Miracles Each Day,” has been designed with care to introduce A Course of Love into the spiritual mainstream.

INTRODUCTION from Being Who You Are

A Course in Love answers questions that earnest seekers still have despite careful study of A Course in MiraclesA Course of Love (ACOL) is thus a stated “continuation” (A.4) of the earlier work, though ACOL can be read independently. Most dedicated students of A Course in Miracles (ACIM) recognize that our egos have been weakened by our carrying out the dictates of what we have read.  But with what do we replace the ego?  There is a void, and this is a dangerous condition in which to live.  We intuitively know this, and so we keep seeking.  “Is there no end to seeking?” we ask, somewhat plaintively.  There is an end to seeking, and A Course of Love takes us to that end.  As an aid to understanding this new end, Being Who You Are reflects upon ten themes from A Course of Love, drawing on the whole of ACOL, and also comparing aspects of A Course in Miracles.

With weakened egos after studying A Course in Miracles, but with nothing to replace the ego, in the words of A Course of Love we have “rejected” ourselves.  We think that to claim our rightful place of identity with the Christ within lacks humility.  A Course of Love says that such an attitude is actually borne of fear: We are afraid we will not please God if we take on a more exalted notion of ourselves. 

You prefer selflessness to self because this is your chosen way to abolish ego and to please God.”  (ACOL, P.20)

But now we approach final learning, and we learn what “pleasing” God is all about—

We take a step away from the intellect, the pride of the ego, and approach final learning through the realm of the heart.  This is why, to end confusion, we call this course A Course of Love. (ACOL, P.44)

There is a single significant difference between A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love.  A Course in Miracles, through the Holy Spirit, brings comfort to the mind.  A Course of Love brings comfort to a troubled heart.  This comfort to the heart is by identity with the Christ within.  It is not a comfort for pride but solace brought to us by Jesus himself.  He embraces us with love.

The thesis of A Course of Love can perhaps be summed up in the following sequence of ideas:  We abandon all attempts to glorify the separated self, the self who does not know God but thinks it is lost to Him because of our sin.  When we wholeheartedly abandon any attempt to glorify this self, we are launched on the way to Christ-consciousness, a transformation that will let us know that our previous faults were mistakes only, not sins, and thus entirely correctable and forgivable.  We merge ACIM and ACOL, in that we merge mind and heart, and we recognize that we are actually in union with God, never separated from Him.  He lives through us.

Note these words from the conclusion of A Course of Love:

“You will realize that you know what to do. . . . Expect heaven on earth, you were told.  This is what it is.  There will be no doubt, no indecision.  Your path will be so clear to you it will be as if it is the only path in the world and you will wonder why you didn’t see it all along.  Expect this.  And it will be. (E5-6)

May this pondering speak loudly and powerfully to your heart and mind–“wholeheartedly.”  Let us claim the heritage that is ours, no longer fearful that we are acting out of ego.  Jesus asks us to leave our fears behind and claim our power with new identity.  Then the more widespread Awakening of our world surely will begin.

                                                            —

The framework of A Course of Love, in that it is a “course,” is the same as A Course in Miracles; the channeling author, Jesus, the same.  The first receiver (scribe) of A Course of Love is Mari Perron, and she received for three years around the year 2000.

In these contemplative reflections on A Course of Love, let us see how we are to come to the end of seeking.

Wonder of This World

There are dimensions of experience awaiting you that are so much grander than the dimension of the body-mind!  But the way that you get to them is by bringing full awareness to what you are choosing to experience in each and every moment. (“The Way of Transformation,” WOM, Chapter 13, Page.167)

I don’t think that this quotation is describing dimensions of experience in the afterlife; I think this quotation is describing a greater dimension to experience right in this world we inhabit now.  The “body-mind” is circumvented, all too often.  Sometimes we have not given up the ego, and egoic tendencies and egoic patterns sabotage us at every turn.  Sometimes we have given up the ego, but we find that we still don’t know what to do with ourselves because we haven’t yet found Christ-consciousness.

Be gentle with ourselves.  We are not without limitations in this world.  But when we open to larger dimensions, intuitively, we are coming in to our own.  These intuitive responses are telling us how to live happily.  They are also solving problems for us, problems with solutions right with the problems.

If we focus on the wonder of this world, we will be taking the right path.  We are meant to be happy here, regardless of limitations, regardless of any suffering/pain.  We can rise above difficulties if we make the mental and heartfelt effort.  And there is very little struggle involved.  The Holy Spirit asks only for a “little willingness” (from A Course in Miracles).

Enjoy the wonder of nature.  Enjoy the wonder of our relationships, becoming holy rather than special.  Revel in the pleasures of this world, because this is not hedonism.  This is supreme good sense.  If we make the most of what we have now, then whatever comes in the future will be easier to take.

We will have discovered the secret to a good life.

Unlimited, Unfettered, Unvictimized Living in This World

Note:  I will leave Choose Only Love for the moment, and return to The Way of Mastery in my blog posts.  I will return to Choose Only Love a little later on. – Celia

“You then, are Christ, playing in the world—unlimited, unfettered, unvictimized by anything. . . .You simply create the structure of your experience.”   (“The Way of Transformation,” WOM, Chapter 13, Page 165)

Here we see that we are indeed creating our own reality, just as we heard in New Thought and in the New Age.  If we believe that Jayem channeled Jesus, and I believe he did, we have on the highest authority—Jesus himself—that we attract what happens to us by the focus to which we bring our consciousness.

This is how Jesus can be with us, any of us, at one and the same time.  He focuses his consciousness wherever he might wish.  This is indeed a reassuring concept.

So:  We are all—ALL—Christ, playing in our world.  We are not victimized by anything, because we always have the choice to change our minds about what we experience.  We are unlimited creations of God.  Our potential is therefore limitless.  A Course in Miracles talks about “limitless release” and it is this that we are confronting today in this blog post.  We have the right and the will to structure our experience in line with the will of God—or to avoid Him and choose to live by our own very limited ego.

I hope that all will choose the guidance of God and will follow His will for a glorious future—beginning today.  There is no better way to live.  Unlimited, unfettered, unvictimized. . . .

Heaven Is Where We Are Living Now

“Within your self is a place where you can read God’s purpose for you.  There, in the sacred precinct of your holy will, resides truth, love, and Heaven.  It is where we are living now.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 7:III

We often wonder what we are here for.  This quotation tells us that we simply must look within to find the answer.  Of course, we can still get ourselves all tangled up with superficial answers that are coming from either the ego or (later) the patterns of the ego.  We can still confuse ourselves.

The way to be certain that we are reading our purpose correctly is, in my opinion, to look back over our life and see what we have been doing that seemed “right.”  When we have really been on the beam, we have known it.  Our joy has been full, for joy is an indication that all is well.  God intends us to be joyous, even in the midst of living in a difficult world.  God’s joy is an indication that we are in our purpose.

I think we have an overall purpose, all of us, to heal ourselves, and our brothers and sisters.  This purpose obviously takes many forms, and it is these many forms that we need to focus upon—to know what is the particular form that healing takes in our lives.  A Course in Miracles has a good affirmation, “I am here only to be truly helpful.”  And in the healing that we will do, we will be truly helpful.  We don’t impose on another our own will, though.  We let healing occur through our connection with God.

Heaven resides in this inner place that we are accessing today.  As the quotation says, “It is where we are living now.”

Enjoy heaven today.

RIGHT OR HAPPY?

Note: Published in MIracles magazine (Jon Mundy, publisher).

by Celia Hales

“Seek not outside yourself. . . Do you prefer that you be right or happy? . . . No one who comes here but must still have hope. . .that there is something outside of himself that will bring happiness and peace to him.  If everything is in him, this cannot be so.”  (ACIM, T-29.VII.1:6, 9; 2:1-2)

“I asked within A Course in Miracles: Would you rather be right or happy?  For happiness can only be the result of perfect trust.  And perfect trust emerges from perfect loyalty.  And perfect loyalty emerges spontaneously in the mind that has rested in surrender.”  (“The Way of Knowing,” WOM, Lesson 31, Page 353)

“Your mind might still prefer to be right rather than happy, so it is important that you let your heart lead in making this new choice.”  (ACOL, C:10.18)

            Jesus comes right to the point when he asks the question, “Do you prefer to be right or happy?”  He knows that a large part of our difficulty is found in our stubbornness in special relationships, special relationships that he would ask us to transform into holy ones.  We ask for friction when we prefer being right.  We move to a conciliatory frame of mind when we let the heart feel love, and then let the heart lead us to a better type of interaction.

            This is simple psychology.  Secular psychology, but it points to the spiritual in the manner in which Jesus discusses it.  We are asked to trust, and this trust comes about automatically when we surrender to God—and to love.  Our way back home, according to ACIM, is found in our relationship to our brother [and sister].  These significant relationships heal us, and a large part of the healing is in our own attitude—an attitude that doesn’t cling obsessively to our own point of view. We turn within to find happiness and peace.  And these cannot be found if we are intent on being “right” in relationships.  Turn aside from the ego to let our heart speak.  Our heart will then inform our mind, and we will understand how our function can be happiness, salvation, forgiveness, and giving miracles.

Communion

“[T]rue communication is communion, the union of two souls and with them, all souls in union with the totality of self.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 7:III

The Self is another way of speaking of God.  Our Christ-Self, which we try to access as we progress, is one with this Self.  This is the “totality” of which Choose Only Love speaks (as does A Course of Love).  We are one with God, though we are too encased in ego sometimes to see this.  As we progress, we relinquish the ego and are left only with the patterns of the ego—something that can still trip us up.

Communion with our God is the sweetest thing we can ever do.  When we truly reach inward to Him, we know a peace that envelops all of our life.  We feel truly at home, for in this we are touching heaven.  Likewise, when we commune with our brothers and sisters in this world, we are soothed beyond belief.  We truly communicate, and when we truly communicate—understand and are understood—we are blessed beyond description.

We start with our brother or sister, our way home as described in A Course in Miracles.  Our holy relationships show us God.  And we go home to heaven holding the hand of our brother or sister.

Allow our communion with other people and with our God inform our day.  There is no better way to have a good day.

Inner Peace

“Once the thought pattern of concern arises, you make that concern real, which then encompasses the entire space of your mind and heart, and thereby you lose peace.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 3:I

When we dwell on a feeling, we make it real to us.  If we dwell on antagonism to our brother or sister, we make it real, and thus harder to overlook.  This is an idea from A Course in Miracles.  Likewise, with concerns or worries.  When we focus upon them, they grow in our mind and even our heart.  The concern overturns more positive thoughts, and then we really are in trouble.

When the bad feeling mushrooms, it encompasses, as this quotation says, the “entire space of. . .mind and heart.”  This takes away our peace, and inner peace is one of the greatest attributes we might aspire to have.  Inner peace goes hand-in-hand with a loving heart.  Inner peace gives us a world that is all-encompassing in its goodness.

We see what we want to see, because we invent our world (as ACIM says).  If we want trouble, we will see it, though we may not be aware that we “want” it.  Focus is everything, for the law of attraction is in operation.  What we focus upon becomes true for us, even if it is not objectively “true.”

Let the mind and heart swell with inner peace today. 

Do not dwell on worries or concerns, making them an obsession.  If we give up worries/concerns, we will walk throughout this world with a serenity that has eluded us until now.

Tenderness

“Tenderness counteracts anger.  No war can stand against it.  Purity appeases and banishes the evil intentions that sometimes creep into the heart of the child of God.”  COL bk.2, 15:III

If we ever face anger in our relationships, here is the antidote:  tenderness.  Here we read that no war, even, can stand against tenderness.  When we are tender, we are expressing a purity that is lost to us when we give in to anger.

A Course in Miracles says that anger is never justified.  But that does not mean that we will never experience anger.  We are still living in this world with feet of clay, and as long as we are finite creatures, I believe that there will be misunderstandings that cause hard feelings.  ACIM also says that forgiveness is the Answer.  And when we forgive, we must not leave ourselves out of the equation.

So here we have it, from two sources combined:  Tenderness and forgiveness will lead us aright.  Tenderness and forgiveness will right the negative pattern that might creep into our relationships.

Sometimes we will need this reminder, because we are still in need of God’s help as we walk this world.  Anger will come, but anger will also go.  And here we have the message from Choose Only Love that will heal our overwrought feelings.  Negativity cannot stand when we listen to God’s solution.

Freedom

“Can you start to see how many feelings and thoughts you have drowned?  How little spontaneity has remained after ‘growing up’?  How many games have you stopped playing, pretending to look serious and mature?  The time has come when that is past!  Now we replace seriousness with freedom.”  COL bk.2, 9:IV

A Course in Miracles says that seriousness is of the ego.  And A Course of Love says that the patterns of the ego will linger even after we have given up egoic living.  These patterns may hold us back now.  Choose Only Love is saying that it is time to give up seriousness entirely, to move ahead in our lives with the freedom that a child of God deserves.

If we listen to the whispers on our mind and heart, we will know how to find freedom.  Nothing will hold us back any longer.  Certainly we will not attempt to be “mature” because we think games of life are no longer warranted.  Life is meant to be limitless and joyous.  This is what our new freedom will mean to us.

Get guidance for the next step by listening to these whispers that I am talking about today.  Whispers come to all of us, and if we are open to them, we will stop and take a look at the subtle thoughts that they are.  These gentle thoughts will give us a new life.  Choose Only Love calls it “freedom.”  A Course in Miracles calls it “limitless” and “joyous” living.  Are the two received books not saying the same thing?  Talking about the same incredible journey that lies ahead of us?

Be reintroduced to spontaneity in our pathway toward the future.  God’s guidance, the guidance of the inner Christ, and the Holy Spirit all will take us to a new place of contentment and peace. 

We won’t lose anything when we turn aside from seriousness, turn aside from egoic ways of living.  Take the high road as we give up our desire to hold the reins of our life so tightly. 

Be flexible in our decisions, turning on a dime when we receive guidance. 

Experience true freedom for the first time since childhood.

Always & Only Love

“This message invites you to remember that your function is to bring love to the world.”  Choose Only Love:  Let Yourself Be Loved (COL bk.2, 14:I)

Life would be so much simpler if we just realized most of the time that we are meant to bring love to the world.  A single, all-embracing purpose such as this also gives meaning to our lives.

Unfortunately, we have heard “love” mentioned so often in this context that we zone out because it seems like the same concept, over and over.  If we had taken this concept to heart, this might be understandable.  But the problem is that we have not taken this concept to heart.  We “play” at love, often special love, an inferior rendering to love that has plenty of drama, including low points.  Our holy love, one to another, will save us now.  It is the only thing that will save us.

I have found that if I focus on just giving my husband love in this time of isolation, I am walking a green earth.  We are happy in the midst of quarantine.  May we take this knowledge with us, out into the world, when the quarantine is over.

A Course in Miracles says variously that forgiveness and happiness are functions for us.  But Choose Only Love makes it simpler for us.  If we focus on love, the forgiveness and happiness will happen all of its own accord.

What more could we ask?

Gather the Harvest that Is Ours

“Everything you attract in your life is perfect because, in agreement with God, it is what you have created as your experience on Earth. . . .[W]e are remembering today:  to stop spreading guilt and to start gathering the harvest that is already yours. . . .”  Choose Only Love:  Let Yourself Be Loved (COL bk.2, 8:I)

We are living a perfect life.  Oh, I know it might not seem like that, but it is the truth—for everything that happens to us has been ordained by God for our lifting up into Christ-consciousness and salvific living.  Even if we are in pain, still this is true.  Even if we are suffering, still this is true.  If we wrap our minds and hearts around this idea, we will know a peace that has eluded us until now.  We will know that all is right in our little world.

A Course in Miracles says that it is not necessary to learn through pain, that learning through rewards is more lasting.  If we can believe this, we can alter the pain and suffering that we sometimes bring to ourselves.  Often our guilt is what has attracted the negativity, and guilt is a false witness to the love of God.  If we gather our harvest, we will know that there is no good reason for us to punish ourselves anymore.  We are blessed children, creations, of God, and it is time that we started believing that and living it accordingly.

Accept this truth of being into our being today.  Live with God in our minds and hearts, and He will do all the rest.  God needs only our cooperation to bring everything good into our lives.

Reading ACIM, ACOL, WOM

Note:  This is a response I penned yesterday to a new reader of my blog.  The idea of listening to one’s heart about this matter came sometime ago from Glenn Hovemann, Take Heart Publications, publisher of A Course of Love.

Thank you for writing to me.  I appreciate that you enjoy the posts on my miracles blog.

I think you must listen to your heart in trying to discern which book to read first, and then the order of all the reading.   

If you recognize that the Holy Spirit gives you guidance (as described in ACIM), then listen to what you have come to recognize as His promptings.  If you recognize the inner Christ-Self (as described in ACOL), then listen to this deepest essence of yourself.  If you simply realize that you have intuitive feelings, then listen to those.  You will know.  Prayer helps.

ACIM seeks to dislodge the ego, and ACOL is said within its pages to be a “continuation” of ACIM, meant to establish a new identity.  But ACOL can stand on its own, separately, if that is your prompting.  WOM may be the most approachable.  You can read the Manual of ACIM first, if the Text or Workbook seem too daunting.  All seek to bring us to Awakening, Christ-consciousness, enlightenment, the next step in our spiritual evolution.  ACIM is my happiness book, ACOL warms my heart, and WOM gives me hope and comfort on my journey.  That is my personal take on them.

You have a treat ahead of you!  We are meant to enjoy our delving into spiritual matters, and I encourage you to read in an easy, reflective, meditative manner, whatever book first that you are the most drawn to.  Whatever you choose will then be right for you.  It would be wrong for anybody else to try to choose for you.  I have just tried to give you something to think about as you mull over your options.

Thank you again for writing to me.

Love to you, Celia

Acting “As If”

            Is it not true that a child learns best when one expects good in her?  Act “as if” a child will respond positively, treat her as you would want a good child to be treated, and the tantrums will fade away.  On the other hand, to focus on the tantrums is to make them stronger.  It is the same with our brother.  Expect the best, let him know that you are seeing the best, and his motivation will fall in line, making our brother a better person.  We must never show that we fear negatives from him; that would be a reinforcement of the possibility of those negatives.  Instead, accentuate the positive in all prayers and all interactions.  Let him know that we love the real Self, and that real Self will blossom before our eyes.  It is indeed very dangerous to act in any other way.  We are all potentially capable of great wrong, and it behooves to turn aside this potentiality, in ourselves and in our brothers, at every opportunity.

            Given this scenario, if we play our part right, our brother will cease so much to see “sin” in himself, and he will adopt our own attitude toward him.  He will begin to act out of the real Self, which is good, because his self-image has changed for the better.  And is this not what we would hope for all people?

–from Out of the Maze, an e-book by the author of this blog.

Forgive by Overlooking “Faults” in Our Brothers & Sisters

            Our brother sees “sin” in himself.  If we see sin in him also, we but reinforce an untruth, not only in him but in ourselves.  Surely it is that we see in others what we have first seen in ourselves; that is the law of projection, and, if we can believe the A Course in Miracles, projection makes perception.

            Does that mean we must deny the evidence of our eyes, and proclaim good where there seems to be only wrong?  No!  That would be a further deception, and it is the truth that we seek. We must acknowledge the wrong that we see, but recognize that, like all sights our physical eyes show us, we are seeing something unreal–a dream, if you will.  However badly our brother seems to treat us, this still is true.  It is our dream, showing us something that we don’t want to see, but only so that we can learn from it.  We are bade not to dwell on this unreality, thereby making it seem real to us, and making it harder simply to overlook and thereby forgive. (T-9.IV.4:4-5)

–from Out of the Maze, an e-book by the author of this blog.

Walking a Mysterious Pathway

            Given the fact that the A Course in Miracles links the idea of our unique role with our brother, more often than not we will find that unique role in one or more brothers.  And we must realize that we may not always recognize our function even if we are in the midst of carrying it out. 

In my own case, this phenomenon kept me on a particular pathway for years, but I was a reluctant walker. Only in retrospect did the pathway seem illuminated, the walk make sense.  Yet I never seriously considered abandoning my pathway; whenever the thought came up, I was given a self-authenticating word from God that I was to remain true to what I had perceived His Will to be.  And I yet do not know the whole of it, though I followed that particular pathway to its conclusion and found a blessing, in unexpected form, at the journey’s end.  It is very likely that I will not fully understand in this lifetime, but as I review my life eventually from the other side, I will know.  For now, I know all I need to know of a journey that seemed incomprehensible much of the time.       

            And is my experience not true for most of us?  We see only dimly, but when we take our brother’s hand, we fulfill a function that is bigger than the two of us.  It is always by way of our brother that the mission comes.  One does not do “great things” in the world without the cooperation of first one, and then another, and another, brother.  Salvation is still borne one mind at a time, and so it behooves us to place our interpersonal relationships next to God in value.  Indeed, it is frequently in our brother only that we are able to see and love God.

–from Out of the Maze, an e-book by the author of this blog.

Do We Have a “Special” Role to Play?

            Do we all want a “special” place in the world?  The Holy Spirit reinterprets specialness to mean the unique role that God would have us fill in our lifetime.  What, given our talents, are we best able to do, the one thing that nobody else can do as well as we?  This function, no longer ego-oriented and “special,” is what God would have us to do.  The A Course in Miracles says, in speaking of our brother, “Let him no more be lonely, for the lonely ones are those who see no function in the world for them to fill; no place where they are needed, and no aim which only they can perfectly fill.” (T-25.VI.3:6)

–from Out of the Maze, an e-book by the author of this blog.

Special Becomes Holy

            We seek this Oneness because the call for it was placed in our souls by God.  Jesus even tells us that Heaven is the awareness of perfect Oneness, “nothing outside this oneness, and nothing else within.” (T-18.VI.1:6) Because we are learning through the A Course in Miracles, we find this Oneness first through our relationships, in particular the chosen learning partner(s) who offer us unlimited ways to learn of love.  These are the ones for whom we are ready, the ones to whom we remain connected lifelong.  And these relationships generally are few. (M-3.5:3) The Course says that we may not even recognize the perfect matching that has occurred in these relationships.  But the perfect lesson, the lesson of genuine love of ourselves, others, and God, is there for us if we do not break off the relationship prematurely.  This then is the special relationship that can become holy, indeed that is meant to become holy.

            And forgiveness points the way.

Genuine Oneness

            We are not really meant to be separate one from another, encased in bodies that are separate.  In the worldview of A Course in Miracles, bodies are the symbol of separation.  Only mind can actually become one.  And this melding can and does occur, though we are fearful of losing our individualized identities.  We actually do want our minds to join as one, and this is the closeness that one normally seeks in physical relationships.  These alone will not satisfy us, because we want a true intimacy that is mind to mind. We seek this intimacy in our special relationships.  But these are hard going without forgiveness of one another, the aspect of Reality that would allow genuine closeness.  If we do not forgive, we are going to become embittered or we are going to wander from relationship to relationship, one to the other, seeking something that cannot be found.  This is the crux of the matter.  Forgive, and the boon we desire is ours.  Refuse to forgive, and we are captives of the ego, which can never give us what we desire–true genuine Oneness.

–from Out of the Maze, an e-book by the author of this blog. Note: The worldview of A Course of Love says that the “elevated Self of form” will be a desirable way to live in this world in physical bodies.

Again, Forgiveness

            Another problem we create for ourselves is that we see an interval of time between forgiveness and its rewards.  This represents the degree to which we would still keep our brother separate from ourselves.  Once this faulty decision is undone, the time interval collapses, and we see the results of forgiveness come quickly on the heels of the forgiveness itself.

            Part of the reason for a time lag between forgiveness and its results is a “space” problem.  We still would see some distance between our brother and ourselves; we are not yet ready for the collapse of boundaries between us.  This is an error, part of the time-space continuum that is fundamentally illusion.  Will a true joining, a true collapse of boundaries, and it is ours.  What do

we fear?  It is love itself, for love of our brother results in true joining.  Just so long as there are spaces in our togetherness, that distance between will be a problem and an exemplification of the love that we fear to make our own.

            We fear for our safety as we join with our brother, for we do not trust him completely.  His mistakes may be profound, but the Christ in him is innocent still.  It is only his insanity which we fear, and we are never asked to join with that.  Indeed, we would make our own mistake if we attempted to do so.  In fact, this is the essential problem with “special” relationships.  But we must look at the purity within our brother’s heart, and joining with that in spirit only, we reinforce it in our brother, to the betterment of us all.

–from Out of the Maze, an e-book by the author of this blog.

“I NEED DO NOTHING”

Note: Published in Miracles magazine for March – April 2020 (Jon Mundy, publisher)

by Celia Hales

“. . .[W]hen the goal is finally achieved by anyone, it always comes with just one happy realization: ‘I need do nothing.’”  (ACIM, COA ed., T-22.VII.7:1)

“This is a call that requires you to do nothing but to remain faithful to it.  You do not need to think about it, but only let it be.”  (ACOL, C:11.17)

“And here we begin to touch upon the essence of my teaching:  I need do nothing.”  (WOM, Part 3 “The Way of Knowing,” Lesson 27)

            When the light has dawned, when we reach Awakening, Jesus says that we sense, “I need do nothing.”  This sentence may have caused much confusion, because it isn’t saying what we  think it is.

            The Way of Mastery elucidates the meaning very well, for here the same thought is discussed.  First let’s take a look at what it isn’t saying:

I need do nothing so I’ll just show up. . . .I really don’t need to do anything, since none of it matters. (WOM, Lesson 27)

            We might think that we can now rest on our laurels.  That we have arrived!  And need do nothing more.  But this is not quite right.

            Instead, the meaning is simply to open ourselves up to our Source, God Himself, and the Holy Spirit Who will tell us that our only purpose is the extension of love.  In A Course of Love, we open ourselves up to the Christ-Self Who dwells within, for this is where we get guidance when we no longer need the intermediary of the Holy Spirit, being ourselves no longer afraid of God.  The Way of Mastery continues:

. . .to find that spaciousness with you in which you are willing to allow that voice within you that is eternally connected to your Source to be the vehicle through which you receive your guidance.  In the pure recognition that you have no purpose—save the extension of Love. (WOM, Lesson 27)

            We are opening ourselves to the spaciousness of our very souls, something that A Course of Love discusses at length.  We are not falling down on the job.  Our work in the world still happens—and still matters–but we don’t dwell on the end result.  Instead, the action, on a daily basis and in the present, is finally viewed as the most important part.    

            We listen for what to do, and then we act.             An easy way to live.

Choosing Life through Forgiveness

We can choose, metaphorically, whether we will experience life or death.  In every miracle is life, and in every impulse to hurt a brother is death.  Surely we choose the latter far more often then we think.  Even the tiny, “inconsequential” hurts are painful–to us if not to our brother.  And so they call for forgiveness.  The answer to any attack, in fact, is forgiveness.

            How may we right the wrong when we have chosen “death” over “life”?  There are no easy answers.  We can and should ask the Holy Spirit for His answer, and it will always mean that forgiveness is called for.  It is not just forgiveness of our brother, but also of ourselves for having made this mistake, having hurt one who is a Son or Daughter of God.  Sometimes forgiving ourselves is much harder than forgiving our brother, because we always attack ourselves first, and once we withdraw blame from others, we have a strong tendency to harbor it within ourselves.

–from Out of the Maze, an e-book by the author of this blog.

Ego Ideal

            If, as for most of us, the ego is debased before meeting a special “other,” another dyn\amic comes into play.  The weakened ego is likely to see in the other her “ego ideal.”  Only if this very special one can love me, will I be perceived in my own (ego) eyes as “worthy.”  All of the other’s special qualities then become fodder for falling in “love.”

            Such “love” always proceeds on part knowledge, and even this part, the Course would have us see, is not knowledge, but faulty perception.  There seem to be many secrets in an egoistic love, though in the words of the A Course in Miracles, “God has no secrets.  He does not lead you through a world of misery, waiting to tell you, at the journey’s end, why He did this to you.” (T-22.I.3:10-11)

            In the unholy love, we are primarily aware of the differences between self and the other.  But this can only be ego, because only the ego knows of differences.  Under the skin, we are all the same.  Only the “lonely and alone, who see their brothers different from themselves” (T- 22.intro.2:2) have need of sin.  When we truly join with another, we know that we are just as capable of his mistakes as he is, as well as just as capable of the love that springs forth from him.  Only when we call an error “sin” does it appear separate and apart from ourselves.

–from Out of the Maze, an e-book by the author of this blog.

Love & Hate

            In much romantic love, the picture of our brother that we see is one of contradictions.  We both love and hate him, and the two concepts effectively cancel each other out.  So we are left with nothing.  We do not know whom we see in our brother any more than we know whom we see in ourselves.  A Course in Miracles counsels that we will be given a picture to replace what we thought, an image of our brother that we will prefer over all our contradictory images.  Even this is not all of him, for it is a perception, and it remains for perception to be translated into knowledge before we will ever see our brother truly.  This final step remains in the future for all of us, because it is our translation into Heaven, a step taken at the end of our pathway by God himself.