Love’s Gifts

“Loss of love comes from only one source.  Call it fear or call it separation but it is still the same.  For in your separated state you ask that love make you special to someone else, and that one special to you.  You think this is what love is for, and so you make of it something it is not and only call it love.”  (A Course of Love, C:14.22)

Within the separation, the illusory separation from God that hasn’t actually happened, it is impossible for us to be contented aside from special relationships.  And, of course, these do not content us long, for we ask both too much and too little of them.  Special relationships are fraught with fear.  We fear being alone again, that this special one will love less (or leave), or that we (even though together still) do not love equally.

These concepts are all meaningless to a holy relationship, which seeks never to take, but always to give—though we know that giving and receiving are one in love.  We will be contented when we give up the idea of having special relationships.  Not that these relationships will be snatched away from us—no, never—but that we will never be happy on a continual basis until we have transformed our loves into holy loves.

Fear then will slip away.  We know that if we lose one form of love, another will take its place.  While we do not try to substitute loves for one another, we do recognize that it is our internal love that is most important.  And this means that all Selves are One, all loves are One.  Fear has no basis for gaining a foothold when ideas such as this are given sway in a life.

Mistake that Could Not Happen but Did

“The displacement of the original intent, while it did not change the original cause, formed a false nature for the personal self.  This displacement of the original intent can be simply stated as the displacement of love with fear.  It is as simple as that.  Yet the way in which each of you have interpreted this displacement has come to seem quite complex.”  (A Course of Love, T4:3.4)

We think that we live complex lives, and, indeed, the ego has reveled in that thought.  But the only thing that happened, the detour into fear, was a shift from love to fear.  We may this transition as quite young children.  And we are led down a path toward living in fear that has always been hard to reverse.

Now we have a way, and it is simple in the extreme.  We simply learn to listen to what our heart is telling us.  Our heart always opts for the love that is hidden away deep within it.  Our heart always knows how to guide us.  In this time of Christ, the heart is our beacon, for the Christ-Self is within, like the heart.  Of course, we don’t mean the physical heart.  “Heart,” as used in A Course of Love, is a metaphor for the deepest feeling part of ourselves.  We feel rather than think, and in that shift, a shift in consciousness comes slower or later.

We can hope for sooner, for those of us reading these words long for Christ-consciousness (if we have not already reached this).  We long to live serene and awakened lives, sure of ourselves, sure of our brothers and sisters, and sure of God.

When we occupied physical bodies, we made a mistake, a mistake that could not happen but did.  We opted for separation from God by feeling a tiny bit of fear that grew into an almost all-encompassing fear.  This situation does not have to go on.  We can retreat from fear into our real essence of love.  At any time.  And the transformation will be arresting.

From Ego-Self to Christ-Self

“I repeat, and will do so again and again, that the ego-self is gone from you.  Whether you fully realize this or not matters not.  This A Course of Love has accomplished.  Now the choice is before you to do one of two things. . .to proceed toward love or fear.  If you proceed with fear you will assemble a new ego-self, an ego-self that perhaps will seem superior to the old, but which will nonetheless still be an ego-self.  If you proceed with love, you will come to know your Christ-Self.”  (A Course of Love, T3:4.8)

Yes, the ego-self is gone from us.  The first book of A Course of Love accomplished this, making us The Accomplished.  It is not ego that says this.  It is the unparalleled good sense.  Jesus says it.  Can we not believe it?

If we continue to walk with fear. we are in danger, for we will be tempted to form a new ego-self.  Jesus says in fact that we will form a new ego-self, if fear intrudes on our peace.  We need to get rid of the fear, for our right minds depend on it.

On the other hand, if we proceed with love, we will come to know our Christ-Self, the inner essence that is our real Self. 

We need to make the distinction between fear and love to make the right choices upcoming.  We need to know that we are safe in this world, that nothing can harm us, that the blood that we see is merely catsup, and that illusions are not reasons to be frightened.  We need to see reality, and reality will launch us toward love.  We see reality when we trust, for, as A Course in Miracles affirms, trust is the bedrock of our new thought system, the thought system of love, of the Christ-Self.  We give up fear when we recognize how divisive a force it has been in clogging up our minds.  Our minds are precious indeed, but we have walked with a demented mind.

Now we can walk with a sane mind by listening to our heart.  Our heart is our saving grace in this new reality in which we find ourselves.  Only our heart can save us now.  Let us proceed by listening to our heart, a part of our being that needs no proof of God.  In our inner essence, we just know that we are not all alone in the universe.  That we have an indwelling spirit that means us well.  And that that indwelling spirit is God Himself.

A Greater Wisdom

“How can what continues to give in to fear know love?  All your reasons for fear-based living have been discounted one by one.  And yet you dare not try to live without it.  Why?  Because of the thoughts of the ego-mind.  The ego-mind is concerned only with its own survival but it has you convinced it is your survival that depends on it.  How can you be convinced to live as if the truth were otherwise?  For only if you begin to live as if the truth were otherwise can you see that it truly is otherwise, or based on a wisdom other than what has come before.”  (A Course of Love, T1:3.5)

We tremble in fear when we make short forays in to trying to live without fear.  Fear seems a given, something that will protect us.

We are misinformed.  Fear is not necessary for our continued survival in this sometimes harsh world.  The reason that we think that fear is needed is the lingering influence of the ego-mind, the insane part of us that continues to dwell just below the surface of our good sense.

The ego is gone from us when we have assimilated the truths of A Course of Love.  We may not realize this, we may still struggle.  But the ego only has a residue of false thinking that continues to infiltrate our moments of reflection.  We have always thought with the ego-mind, and so to hear Jesus say in ACOL that we are done with the ego is immediately enough to raise doubts in our minds.  How can we be done with the ego?  We see its influence constantly.

We need to let go.  We need to trust what Jesus is telling us.  If he says that the ego is no more for us, then let the mind rest in that knowledge—for it is knowledge, not perception.  Just rest.  And the truth of the elimination of the ego will dawn on a calmer mind in ourselves.

A greater wisdom is available to us, and we ought to take advantage of that greater wisdom forthwith.  Let the smudge of ego on our minds be lightened by our prayer consideration that perhaps the ego is just a mirage, seeming to be ahead of us on our pathway, but actually not representing anything but illusion.

Return to Relationship

“In seeing the self as separate you have known fear and have been forced to reconcile fear with love.  Now, in coming back to relationship and union with me you have realized that you are not separate and now have striven against the ‘opposing’ force of separation.  With the acceptance of the Christ in you, you are returned to relationship and need no longer strive against the ‘opposing’ force of separation, for you no longer know it.”  (A Course of Love, D:Day40.8)

As we turn from separation, we turn from fear to love.  We may even strive actively to turn from fear to love.  We have realized that we aren’t separate (as we could never be, for we are part of God), and we have striven to get past these ideas of the ego with every force of our personality.  When we accept the Christ in us, we understand that we have returned to a relationship that has long eluded us, and now we no longer need to strive against separation.  We know intimately that we are joined with the Christ Self; we know intimately that we are “separate” no longer.

Return to Our True Nature

“You may not feel that you have ever intended to live in fear.  But the displacement of the original intent was so complete that each life has begun with fear and proceeded from this beginning continually reacting fear.  While the original intent remained within you and caused you to attempt to express a Self of love despite your fear, fear has thwarted your every effort and caused the very effort that has continued the cycle of fear.  To have to try to be who you are and to express who you are is the result of the displacement of the nature of love with the nature of fear.  What we now are about is reversing this displacement and returning you to your true nature.”  (A Course of Love, T4:3.5)

We had an “original intent” eons ago, and that was to live in love—not fear.  But fear intervened, and nothing has ever been right since.  This is the crucial, central feature of our lives.  We have displaced love with fear, and then we have lived in this egoic state of fear.  There ought to be a better way.

And there is.  We can learn, and not necessarily by traditional means of study, to displace fear and the egoic self with the Self of love.  This change will make all the difference.  And A Course of Love is showing us how to effect this change.  It is true (as A Course in Miracles says also) that God makes the final decision of when we are ripe for Christ-consciousness or Awakening.  Then he metaphorically reaches down to us and lifts us up.

Yet there are things we can do to remove blocks to the awareness of love.  This in itself will ease our way, and give us a happy experience.  We need to get the idea of suspiciousness out of our minds; we need trust above all else.  And trust we can have; just a decision to have it is enough to bring it to us.  This does not mean that we will be gullible.  We have our own good sense, and this is sense of the real Self, not the ego.  When we place our faith in the inner Christ Self, we are far more likely to be right than to be wrong in our evaluations of others.  Note that this does not mean “judgment” of others, for judging keeps us from attaining enlightenment.  We need to simply rest in the assurance that if we are encouraged to avoid a particularly situation (or person), we will know how and where to do so.  That is all.

Oneness

“Preparation is underway for oneness of form and content.  It begins in the imaginal and extends ‘into form’ through actions such as your own, that of many others, and the alignment of time and eternity in the cosmos.”  Mirari

This quotation is letting us know that the elevation of form is underway, an elevation that will take us who are in form to the next level—a oneness that extends to form, a oneness with God in form.  This is the “elevated Self of form” that A Course of Love extols.

We progress as separated souls, now healed, much faster on the earth plane, when we are in bodies, in form.  We need to keep coming back to save everyone.  So form is not denigrated, for when we seek to be out of form—on the Other Side, or heaven—we are a little removed from bringing about the salvation of our brothers and sisters.

May we not seek to escape from the earth precipitously.  We are needed here.  And not only will everyone needing us be blessed, but we will be blessed as well.

Time, which we experience on earth, and eternity, which we experience in heaven, are merging.  A new day is upon us.

Our Internal Love Is Most Important

“Loss of love comes from only one source.  Call it fear or call it separation but it is still the same.  For in your separated state you ask that love make you special to someone else, and that one special to you.  You think this is what love is for, and so you make of it something it is not and only call it love.”  (C:14.22)

“If you do not believe you can reverse or ‘turn back’ to the state in which you existed before the original error, then you never shall.”  (A Course of Love, C:17.12)

Within the separation, the illusory separation from God that hasn’t actually happened, it is impossible for us to be contented aside from special relationships.  And, of course, these do not content us long, for we ask both too much and too little of them.  Special relationships are fraught with fear.  We fear being alone again, that this special one will love less (or leave), or that we (even though together still) do not love equally.

These concepts are all meaningless to a holy relationship, which seeks never to take, but always to give—though we know that giving and receiving are one in love.  We will be contented when we give up the idea of having special relationships.  Not that these relationships will be snatched away from us—no, never—but that we will never be happy on a continual basis until we have transformed our loves into holy loves.

Fear then will slip away.  We know that if we lose one form of love, another will take its place.  While we do not try to substitute loves for one another, we do recognize that it is our internal love that is most important.  And this means that all Selves are One, all loves are One.  Fear has no basis for gaining a foothold when ideas such as this are given sway in a life.

“Beautiful Spring which Bubbles Forth with the Purest of Waters”

“You are free to see—and please listen carefully—right where you are that the separation never occurred.  All attempts to keep it in place have been like battling for the rights of chimera to exist like insisting that the illusion of an oasis seen in a desert is truly real.  Instead of going to the location and finding out what is real and what is false, standing there bickering with your arms folded across your chest, arguing for the right to be right—while Reality slips through your fingers.  All the while, you are standing next to a beautiful spring which bubbles forth with the purest of waters.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Chapter 19, Page 236)

This quotation from Jesus is so inspiring!  Everything is the Now, and so time is nonexistent, and our long wait for Christ-consciousness or Awakening can come to an end at any moment.  If we look to the beautiful springs in our midst, we will be more inclined to think and feel like God.  A Course in Miracles says that God Himself reaches down (a metaphor) and lifts us up in Awakening, that God Himself makes the decision of when this great blessing comes.  But The Way of Mastery, channeled by Jesus to Jayem, is saying to us that we have a hand in determining the time. 

We don’t have to make elaborate preparations.  The Holy Spirit, or the Christ-Mind does all that.  It would be arrogant for us to assume that our role were very large.  But we can pray for a surcease of our difficult lives.  We can pray that the time of Awakening hasten.  And we can ask that we be prepared for that eventuality—for it will come to everyone eventually.  This is the next great leap in evolution of the mind/heart, as I see it.

Ask to have fear and judgment removed from our emotions.  These are, according to A Course of Love, the stumbling blocks to Christ-consciousness.

Pray long and deeply, for asking for Awakening is in God’s will.

PRICE REDUCTION FOR BEING WHO YOU ARE, BOOK BY THIS BLOGGER

In time for Christmas, I am reducing the price of the paperback of Being Who You Are:  Pondering A Course of Love to $7.95 (the e-book is $5.99).  As you know from reading this blog, A Course of Love is considered by many to a continuation of A Course in Miracles (this is said within the Addendum of A Course of Love by the man whom many believe channeled ACOL to Mari Perron, Jesus himself).

Being Who You Are is 265 pages and highlights ten themes from ACOL.  My book has good reviews, 5 out of 5 stars for all 9 ratings and 6 reviews. 

To find the entry on Amazon, google “amazon being who you are celia hales.”  And thank you.

Love, Celia

God Let Go

“When you decided to forsake the arms of love, your Heavenly Mother had no choice but to let you go.  She did what every loving mother does in those circumstances:  made sure that you had everything you needed to be safe and sound, and that you could return without complication when you wished.”  Choose Only Love bk.4, 2:III

God is given to the feminine in this quotation, an emphasis that He is the All, though He does not have gender at all. By using the “Heavenly Mother,” this quotation lets us know that “She” let go, she did so out of love. We can and we do return to God’s way, and this can be “without complication,” which I think means that we will not be judged for our lapse.

A Course of Love makes the same statements. When we rebelled, thinking we would make a world that we liked better than staying One with God, He “let go.” (In A Course of Love, the masculine pronouns are used.) What difficulty has emerged in our lives! And now we want, like the Prodigal Son, to return–which means to heal the separation. And the separation is a separation from God.

How do we heal this division? We turn aside, ever so gently, from fear. And we stop judging, ourselves as well as others, our brothers and sisters on this journey. According to A Course of Love, these two aspects of our life–fear and judgment–are all that are keeping us from Christ-consciousness.

If we love enough, dropping the fear and judgment is easy. When enthralled by love, and Love from God, we can see this.

May our day go smoothly as we seek to love ever more deeply. May the mellow feeling of Christ-consciousness enfold us today.

Potential for Heaven on Earth

“I know of the importance of what some consider ‘small things’ to be, things about care of the body, and the feelings of those who make this sometimes-desperate journey through life.  I have known human life as both Heaven and Earth, and more specifically as the potential for Heaven on Earth, a potential now being actualized in the imaginal realm.”  Mirari

I think Mary means by the “imaginal realm,” and the actualization of a Heaven on Earth, that we are moving into a new time, the time of Christ. This is something Jesus said in A Course of Love. Of course, time varies in what it means on the Other Side. So we don’t actually know how long it will take for Heaven on Earth to come about. We are impatient souls, for we would not have come into this world unless we were impatient to progress. I have read that progress, soul progress, comes more easily in this earthly realm.

We and others are imagining a better future. And this is all to the good. As we imagine, we also live in this world with the daily habits of a body. We are very much in the concrete, or what appears to be the concrete to us. It may be illusion (and A Course in Miracles says it is), but we experience our life here as “real.” We feel pain when hurt, we cry when our emotions overcome us. So we are very absorbed by the life of the moment.

Mary has always appealed to us because of her unique understanding. As mother of Jesus, she witnessed his crucifixion, not knowing at the time that resurrection would happen in three days. She has suffered. So her loving understanding is something we all can appreciate.

Imagine today a better future. This is praying. And this prayer will reach our God.

Love and Fear

“The displacement of the original intent, while it did not change the original cause, formed a false nature for the personal self.  This displacement of the original intent can be simply stated as the displacement of love with fear.  It is as simple as that.  Yet the way in which each of you have interpreted this displacement has come to seem quite complex.”  (A Course of Love, T4:3.4)

We think that we live complex lives, and, indeed, the ego has reveled in that thought.  But the only thing that happened, the detour into fear, was a shift from love to fear.  We made this transition as quite young children.  And we are led down a path toward living in fear that has always been hard to reverse.

Now we have a way, and it is simple in the extreme.  We simply learn to listen to what our heart is telling us.  Our heart always opts for the love that is hidden away deep within it.  Our heart always knows how to guide us.  In this time of Christ, the heart is our beacon, for the Christ-Self is within, like the heart.  Of course, we don’t mean the physical heart.  “Heart,” as used in A Course of Love, is a metaphor for the deepest feeling part of ourselves.  We feel rather than think, and in that shift, a shift in consciousness comes sooner rather than later.

We can hope for sooner, for those of us reading these words long for Christ-consciousness (if we have not already reached this).  We long to live serene and awakened lives, sure of ourselves, sure of our brothers and sisters, and sure of God.

When we occupied physical bodies, we made a mistake, a mistake that could not happen but did.  We opted for separation from God by feeling a tiny bit of fear that grew into an almost all-encompassing fear.  This situation does not have to go on.  We can retreat from fear into our real essence of love.  At any time.  And the transformation will be arresting.

In the Bosom of God

“Once you accept that you are one with life, one with God, and are together a unit just like a child in the womb, you can begin to live in the reality of the bosom of God.”  Choose Only Love bk.4, 2:II

This quotation from Choose Only Love, an inspired work by Sebastian Blaksley just out, emphasizes to me the meditative nature of this work. It is coming out in multiple volumes, and is a blessing recognized by those of us who read it.

When we imagine ourselves a child in the womb, we are thinking safety, and nothing says safety more conclusively than being held close to the bosom of God. We need to practice love as well as seek safety, of course, and the best way for me to react with love in my devotionals is to feel the warmth of love in my heart–for God, for others, even for myself. This “cocooning” by God does lead us to recognize that without love, we are truly lost. He does not will it, but our personal will might take over and lead us into narrow pathways of ill choice.

I have sometimes said that we need to “milk” the love, when we feel it (especially when we feel it keenly), and then we will be more likely to turn to our heart instead of intellectualizing everything.

Our heart, as A Course of Love also said, does then inform our mind, working in conjunction with our mind–and we are led in the pathway back to God.

From Ego-Self to Christ-Self

“I repeat, and will do so again and again, that the ego-self is gone from you.  Whether you fully realize this or not matters not.  This A Course of Love has accomplished.  Now the choice is before you to do one of two things. . .to proceed toward love or fear.  If you proceed with fear you will assemble a new ego-self, an ego-self that perhaps will seem superior to the old, but which will nonetheless still be an ego-self.  If you proceed with love, you will come to know your Christ-Self.”  (A Course of Love, T3:4.8)

Yes, the ego-self is gone from us.  The first book of A Course of Love accomplished this, making us The Accomplished.  It is not ego that says this.  It is the unparalleled good sense.  Jesus says it.  Can we not believe it?

If we continue to walk with fear. we are in danger, for we will be tempted to form a new ego-self.  Jesus says in fact that we will form a new ego-self, if fear intrudes on our peace.  We need to get rid of the fear, for our right minds depend on it.

On the other hand, if we proceed with love, we will come to know our Christ-Self, the inner essence that is our real Self. 

We need to make the distinction between fear and love to make the right choices upcoming.  We need to know that we are safe in this world, that nothing can harm us, that the blood that we see is merely catsup, and that illusions are not reasons to be frightened.  We need to see reality, and reality will launch us toward love.  We see reality when we trust, for, as A Course in Miracles affirms, trust is the bedrock of our new thought system, the thought system of love, of the Christ-Self.  We give up fear when we recognize how divisive a force it has been in clogging up our minds.  Our minds are precious indeed, but we have walked with an insane  mind.

Now we can walk with a sane mind by listening to our heart.  Our heart is our saving grace in this new reality in which we find ourselves.  Only our heart can save us now.  Let us proceed by listening to our heart, a part of our being that needs no proof of God.  In our inner essence, we just know that we are not all alone in the universe.  That we have an indwelling spirit that means us well.  And that that indwelling spirit is God Himself.

The Body in This World

“Now, one of the reasons that I have had little to say through the ages, especially to those who revere the leaving of the body, is that I am Mother of the ‘body’ of Christ.  And I am deeply with you in the cause to bring ‘the body’ into the realm of the living.”  Mirari

This somewhat controversial statement by Mary of Nazareth, received by Mari, is controversial because A Course in Miracles enthusiasts, and many A Course of Love enthusiasts, do not believe in the material world.  The Workbook of ACIM says, famously, “There is no world!”  We are living in illusion as long as we are in the dream that God gave us when we separated from Him.  This too I believe.

Mary’s statement has something deeper, though.  The body certainly seems “real” to us, and it is this “real” nature of the body that may explain why Jesus worked with Mari to bring forth A Course of Love.  If read narrowly, A Course in Miracles makes our life here pretty dismal—until the Holy Spirit brings to us the “happy dreams” that he does bring.  But we may still get the impression from ACIM that life on the Other Side, as spirits, is better than life in the body.

If we all believe this, we won’t want to return to the earth in the future.  We will live out our lives, glad to be rid of this world.  But we are the hands and feet of God (and by extension, Jesus), and if we don’t save our brothers and sisters who are lost in attack and anger, who will?

Perhaps Jesus did not at first recognize in A Course in Miracles how dismal he was making this world sound.  So we have A Course of Love, and, now, Mirari, to celebrate the new world that we will be creating.  A new world in which reality blossoms.

Wisdom that Has Not Come Before

“How can what continues to give in to fear know love?  All your reasons for fear-based living have been discounted one by one.  And yet you dare not try to live without it.  Why?  Because of the thoughts of the ego-mind.  The ego-mind is concerned only with its own survival but it has you convinced it is your survival that depends on it.  How can you be convinced to live as if the truth were otherwise?  For only if you begin to live as if the truth were otherwise can you see that it truly is otherwise, or based on a wisdom other than what has come before.”  (A Course of Love, T1:3.5)

We tremble in fear when we make short forays in to trying to live without fear.  Fear seems a given, something that will protect us.

We are misinformed.  Fear is not necessary for our continued survival in this sometimes harsh world.  The reason that we think that fear is needed is the lingering influence of the ego-mind, the insane part of us that continues to dwell just below the surface of our good sense.

The ego is gone from us when we have assimilated the truths of A Course of Love.  We may not realize this, we may still struggle.  But the ego only has a residue of false thinking that continues to infiltrate our moments of reflection.  We have always thought with the ego-mind, and so to hear Jesus say in ACOL that we are done with the ego is immediately enough to raise doubts in our minds.  How can we be done with the ego?  We see its influence constantly.

We need to let go.  We need to trust what Jesus is telling us.  If he says that the ego is no more for us, then let the mind rest in that knowledge—for it is knowledge, not perception.  Just rest.  And the truth of the elimination of the ego will dawn on a calmer mind in ourselves.

A greater wisdom is available to us, and we ought to take advantage of that greater wisdom forthwith.  Let the smudge of ego on our minds be lightened by our prayer consideration that perhaps the ego is just a mirage, seeming to be ahead of us on our pathway, but actually not representing anything but illusion.

To Mother the New into Existence

“The invasion is an intrusion of The New into the old, a force meant to quicken the passing of all that lingers of death in the living.  To end living death and welcome living life.  To end division and become one with what is being birthed.  To mother The New into existence.”  Mirari

Here Mirari, Mari’s new book, takes up where A Course of Love left off.  Still talking about The New, the new world that we will all create together, this new book goes a step farther.  It counsels that we do what we can to bring love into our world, big time, for there are still too many of us who are bringing negativity into this world.

We need to be sure that we don’t encourage negativity by our own actions.  We must stop feeding egos, and here I know Mari’s new book is preaching to the choir.  All of us who have discovered A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love know of the detrimental effect of egoic and egotistical thought.

Listen to our heart.  Mirari is also a heart-centered book, in this way like A Course of Love.

Reviews/Ratings

Being Who You Are: Pondering A Course of Love is written by the author of this blog, Celia Hales, and is available on Amazon.

Andrew B

5.0 out of 5 stars

Wow!

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 31, 2021.

I can’t thank Celia enough for writing such a wonderful book. It totally introduced me to “A Course in Love”, after I have been a ” A Course in Miracles” student for 15 years. It is just so lovely, gentle and life affirming. I loved it!

Margaret Deeb – Note:  This is Mari Perron, who received A Course of Love.  Margaret Deeb is her legal, married name, and the way in which she has her account on Amazon.

5.0 out of 5 stars

The warmth and experience of the author make this an intimate read

Reviewed in the United States on May 29, 2021

Celia Hales has the wonderful combination of a confident voice and a gentle manner. I am happy to be able to complement her ponderings on being you are through the experience of A Course of Love. I am in complete agreement that being who we truly are is the promise of this work. Hales begins and ends with sharing herself, which fits totally with that premise. Chapter 1 starts with a favorite passage of mine. It is imbued with a depth of feeling that invites the reader to be embraced by love. Celia describes it as emblematic of the warm, heartfelt tone throughout. She speaks of friendship as getting to know the essence of a person. Hales assures new and expectant readers that ceasing to let our minds rule our hearts and realizing that love is our nature, will guide us to the new and unprecedented experience of the elevated self of form. Celia Hales concludes by speaking of how people like genuineness and that this is what being who you are actually accomplishes. That was my favorite part. Being genuine. Who doesn’t want to be that? She also said, “We become inspired.” Being genuine and inspired, wholehearted and intuitive, can lead to the sense, she says, that “we are free.” These are words that I delight in as the “receiver” of A Course of Love. Those considering reading A Course of Love may find this a pleasing invitation, and those who have already read ACOL may enjoy the ten themes she draws upon, as well as her frequent reflections on A Course in Miracles.

Bonnie Crawford

5.0 out of 5 stars

 A Special Book that Speaks to the Heart

Reviewed in the United States on April 5, 2021

Celia Hales’ book is packed with wisdom and made sense not only to my mind, but especially spoke to my heart. The contemplations are uplifting to the spirit, and I appreciate what she said about dropping the false self, the ego, and coming to the place of the heart – our TRUE selves that are naturally free and happy. The joining of heart and mind – whole heartedness – that brings us the freedom to live in peace and joy, as we were intended to. I also found her discussion helpful of living in the present moment and the letting go of fear and judgement. Her book is beautifully written and makes me look forward to reading “A Course of Love.”

Acolover

5.0 out of 5 stars

 Perfect title

Reviewed in the United States on January 2, 2021

The title of this book goes right to the heart of it: being who you are—who you REALLY are. The author is thoroughly grounded in A Course in Miracles, since 1981. A Course of Love, coming from the same Source, expands upon the earlier Course, and she deftly integrates the two. A key understanding is that we cannot think our way to Heaven, we only experience that awareness by being who we (really) are. And when we are being who we are, we naturally know how to act.

Separation / Fear

“Your attempt at individuation and extension, an attempt consistent with the nature of your being, failed only because you experienced separation rather than differentiation, and fear rather than love.”  (A Course of Love, D:Day40.6)

What, eons ago, were we trying to do when we enter physical matter on earth?  We were not at risk of avoiding God, as long as we didn’t think that we needed separation from Him.  We needed only to be differentiations—individuations—of God, experiencing physical form in this new environment, new for souls such as we.

But we did think that we need to experience what life was like to be separate from God.  This is why this experiment, at first, failed.  To live without God, without communing with God, we needed to construct a separate existence ruled by a separate thought:  the ego.  And so we dropped into pain and suffering, for nothing that deems itself apart from God can survive well in such a harsh climate as we have found ourselves. 

We fell into fear rather than love, and that has made all the difference.  We didn’t known what we were getting into.  Long have we rued that day, though we didn’t know what we were rejecting.  Our attempt at individuation thus became known as the “fall of man,” and we have since struggled mightily to find our way back to our Maker.

It is important to note that extension into physical form was not the problem; it was only how we lived it that was (and is) the problem.  Now we need to recognize that Awakening to reality is what we need.  We have taught ourselves not to commune with God, and this is a most unnatural way to live.  In our finite minds, we can’t know what best to do next.  Only supernatural help will guide us rightly.  And this supernatural help is right within us, in the Christ mind that dwells within.

Let’s make the right choice today, and seek the guidance that only communing with our depths can bring about.

Being

“My son, your brother, spoke to you of an in-between time, of the twin circles of one way passing and a new way coming into being.”  Mirari

Here Mary is speaking of A Course of Love, received by Mari several years ago. That book indicated that we are passing from a time of “doing” to a time of “being,” that there is a time for both, but that we are seeing a transitional time now. Jesus’ way was seen as “doing,” and Mary’s way is seen as “being.” Soon all of us will see the advantage of “being” as a way of life.

This does not mean that we will not continue to achieve in this life. But it does mean that our emphasis will be different. God doesn’t ask extravagant and busy doings of us; He celebrates our being with Him and with others in Love, Love that He champions.

Listen to Our Heart

“Uncertainty will not now come to teach you lessons you have already learned but will only visit you as an echo from the past.  It is a habit, a pattern of the old thought system.  All you must do is not listen to it.  Its voice will not be gentle or full of love.  Its voice will hold the unmistakable edge of fear.”  (A Course of Love, T3:10.11)

When we refuse to surrender to divine love, we are racked with uncertainty about life and everything in it.  We are like wind socks, buffeted about by the breeze, a gentle breeze that we mistake for the direst emergency.  This uncertainty will fall away when we know enough to surrender to God.  What uncertainty still plagues will only be a “echo” (T3:10.11) from the fear-ridden state of illusory separation.  This echo will be fearful, and this fear is the way that we will recognize that it is a lamentable part of our past.  It cannot do anything to us now except to make us uneasy.  But it can and will do that, until we give up separation and its concomitant independence as a bad idea.

Don’t listen to uncertainty about anything in our lives.  Let guidance from within give us the certainty about what to say and do and even think.  The heart’s advice will stand us in good stead now.  Listen to that which calls to us.  Listen to our heart.

Loss of Love the Greatest Fear

“And all of these, those who would admit to fear, and those who would not, would still believe that love exists despite fear’s claim upon it, and think that they are lucky to have found a love to shield them for a little while from all the other things they fear.  And yet the greatest fear of all is that of loss of love.  You who have given everything to be alone and separate fear most of all that which you have given everything to attain.  For what is loss of love but confirmation of your separate state?  What is loss of love but being left alone?”  (A Course of Love, C:14.21)

We thought that we wanted to be separate from God; this is part of the theology of traditional Christianity as well as A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love.  Separation would be that we would be independent, on our own, isolated.  Yet in the illusory actuality (for we could never actually separate from God, being part of Him) we have been the most afraid of being alone.  Try as hard as we can, we still cling, desperately, to the special love relationships that would save us from ourselves—or so we think.  So the living out of isolation has actually been the source of our greatest fears.

We fear being alone more than anything because somewhere in our deluded minds is the certainty that we are living amiss, and that a furious God will take revenge on us for denying Him.  This is as true for atheists as anyone else, for each of us of whatever persuasion has a religion in which we put our faith.  If this religion is ego-tainted, we will fear all the more, and what religion in our world is not ego-tainted?  It is only in giving up our false idols of isolation and separation that we come even close to finding our way safely through this world.

We find our way safely in this world by acknowledging what our heart tells us.  And this heart does not require “proof” of God’s existence.  It is rightly said that there are no atheists in foxholes (a somewhat outdated reference recalling the first world war).  When we get scared about our predicament, we do turn to what we hope will save us.  And A Course of Love proclaims that this is the saving grace for what we understand to be our heart.  It alone does not seek to have divine proof; it simply knows that we are not alone in all the universe.  We are not isolated and independent; we are meant to share our living with others.  And A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love call these relationships, the “holy” relationships. Most all of us have experienced loss of love in some form, with somebody.  Somebody let us down, we cry.  We think that if only this special someone had loved us for ourselves alone, we would be saved.  This makes of love a mockery.  And it places in our midst a scavenger that would devoir true love.  We do not have to pin our hopes on one someone (or several someones) who can save us.  We need only rest in the knowledge—and it is knowledge—that we are never meant to be alone, that divine love is there to protect and keep us safe.  And once we give up the attributes of specialness, our relationships one to another will indeed be holy.  We have to give up specialness in relationships, we are told.  But the relationships will not be snatched from us, to leave us cowering in the dust.  The special relationships turned holy will be a foretaste of Heaven, right here on earth.

World of Love

“Now, as we reverse this set of circumstances, and replace the world of fear with a world of love, there can be no more weighing of love against fear.  God did not create fear and will not be judged by it.  All judgment is the cause of fear and this effort to weigh love’s strength against fear’s veracity.  While you chose to believe and live in a world the nature of which was fear, you could not know God.  You could not know God because you judged God from within the nature of fear, believing it to be your natural state.”  (A Course of Love, T4:3.7)

We thought that it was protective to have fear in our arsenal of defenses.  But did it ever work very well?  We got anxious often, but did this really protect us?

We don’t need fear’s protection.  We don’t need protection at all.  We have no need for defense against anything.  We will be warned when we need to do anything to “protect” ourselves because we are in danger of some kind.  God does not leave us defenseless; He is our defense, if we ever need to have a defense in this world at all, and that is debatable. 

Defenses do what they would protect against. 

We thought that fear was a natural reaction, not realizing that it was, instead, evidence of living insanity.  We need to replace this world of fear we have made into a world of love, and only then can we relax in the grace that God gives us.  We need to make a definite decision to give up judgment, and this much we can do.  We can determine that we will not judge ourselves, others, or God, and we can stand by this as a promise.  The world will never again look as dismal.  We will have found means to emerge from a world of insanity.  We will walk into the light.

Effortful Living Transformed

Even the most loving parent, like unto your most loving image of God, having brought a child into a fearful world, became subject to the tests of time.  Thus did the world become a world of effort with all things in it and beyond it, including God, weighed and balanced against the idea of fear.”  (A Course of Love, T4:3.6)

We were raised in a dysfunctional environment—all of us, regardless of how loving our parents tried to be toward us.  They too partook of fear, and thus we were nurtured in fear.  The world became a place in which we sought the approval of our parents, and this approval became something to earn, something about which we must exert effort.

Our relationships continued from this first one, of parents to children (us).  We sought to grow through achievement, our own efforts, and the world became a fairly grim place indeed.  We projected this fear upon our image of the God within, though we didn’t know that He was within.  Most of us saw God as an external Creator, someone, something like Santa Claus, who knew everything that we thought and did, and weighed it in the balance to decide if we were good little boys and girls.  This is indeed a fearful way to view God, and we imagine that this might indeed hurt Him (if the Creator were to have an ego such as we have, which He doesn’t).

So we grew up, supported by our fearful ideas of this world.  Only religious convictions can actually save us from the dilemma in which we find ourselves.  And these do not necessarily have to be of a traditional sense.  God is God of the secular as well.  And He will provide.  We need only ask, though we are apt to forget the asking part when we are fearful. 

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.

Choose Love in Our World

“Think you not that reason opposes love, for love gives reason its foundation.  The foundation of your insane world is fear.  The foundation of Heaven, your true home, is love.  The same world based upon these different foundations could not help but look quite different.”  (A Course of Love, C:14.9)

We don’t have to have blind faith in the precepts of A Course of Love.  We are told, “love gives reason its foundation.” (C:14.9) We are further told that the foundation of our insane world is fear.  And the foundation of Heaven, our true home, is love.  It is strongly implied that the way that we look at our world determines whether it is hell or Heaven.  The way that we look.  That is perception, and we know from A Course in Miracles that projection makes perception.  What we feel inwardly will determine what we see in the outer world.  And if we are feeling fear, we will see an insane world that is violent and destructive.  If we are feeling love, we will see Heaven.

Is this too simplistic?  Is this even true?  Can the same images that flow before our eyes seem fearful or loving, based on what we are projecting?  Yes.  For the fearful mind sees more reason to fear, and the loving mind sees only that in its sight are lamentable things, but no cause for fear.  The loving mind does not reject the outer world of insanity as not there; it sees that it is there, but it is only illusion, the illusion of insanity.  And so it gives that outer, violent and destructive, world no credence.

“The same world based upon these different foundations could not help but look quite different.”  (C:14.9)  Yes!  This is the secret for staying in this world, but seeing it differently.  This is the secret of having peace in the midst of chaos.  Choose fear or love, and all the world will change according to the emotion that is chosen.

Real Love

“The desire to protect is a desire that arises from distrust and is based totally on fear.  If there were no fear, what would there be to protect?  Thus, all of your love—the love that you imagine you keep within yourself, and the love that you imagine you receive and give—is tainted by your fear and cannot be real love.  It is because you remember love as that which kept you safe, that which kept you happy, that which bound all those you love to you, that you attempt to use love here.  This is a real memory of creation that you have distorted.”  (A Course of Love, C:9.3)

We are not able to use love to protect us, although we often try.  The desire to protect ourselves is a fear-based motivation, one that can’t be what it tries to do, keep us safe.  We are already safe; we don’t need anything extra to make ourselves so.

We have, Jesus says, a memory of love from eons ago (as the world judges time).  Love at the beginning, before the illusory separation, kept us happy and kept together all whom we loved.  Somehow, dimly, we remember this true event, and we want some of that same feeling now.  We try to find it in fear that comes from distrust.  If we didn’t think we were in danger, why would we think at all about being “protected”?  We would know that there is nothing that we need protection from, and we would be at peace.  So this desire is wholly fear-based.  We do love a disservice when we attempt to “use” it at all.  Love cannot be used, just as we would be wise not to use each other for our own ends.  We are safe, we have always been safe, and sooner or later we will all realize our safety is a God-given gift.

When love is tainted by fear, it is not real love.  Unfortunately, most of our love in this world is tainted by fear, and thus we need another way to view love.  We need to realize that it is part of the long-ago memory of Oneness with God.  Only our attempt to separate from God, with the concomitant rise of the ego, has kept us from real love.  Let us decide today that we will be done with all of this foolishness.  Ask to experience real love, remove our mind from attempts to use this love to protect the physical body, and see if a better day doesn’t dawn.

Feelings Come from Love

“Your feelings in truth come from love, your response to them is what is guided by fear.  Even feelings of destruction and violence come from love.  You are not bad, and you have no feelings that can be labeled so.  Yet you are misguided concerning what your feelings mean and how they would bring love to you and you to love.”  (A Course of Love, C:5.11)

Jesus forms a startling assertion about love and fear, one that we wouldn’t expect.  He says that all of our feelings come from love, in essence because we are not “bad” (C:5.11).  A Course in Miracles says that we have the “innocence of God” (T-III.17:2), and so Jesus is here asserting to the same thought.  How our feelings of destruction and violence can come from love may remain nebulous to us, but Jesus believes that we have just misunderstood ourselves.  We have been misguided about how to bring love to ourselves.  So we have made wrong choices in our love, choices that gave us destruction and violence.

Do we not often noticed that nobody who is embroiled in violence and destruction thinks that he/she is at fault about anything that is bad?  History is replete with wars that were fought in the name of God, believing that one is doing God’s will in the antagonism.  This is one way of looking at love gone astray.  This is one way to realize that fear has done nothing, that it is only our misperceptions about love and how it ought to be expressed that have done us in.

Our feelings are not bad, Jesus says.  We only need to channel those feelings in the right direction, seeing love where it really is, avoiding feelings of destruction and violence, pain and suffering.  Then we will find love’s fruits to be our chosen just desserts.  We will have taken another step on love’s pathway.  Another step toward Awakening/Christ-consciousness.

Joining Jesus in Christhood

“The Christ in you is wholly human and wholly divine. . . .It is this joining of the human and divine that ushers in love’s presence, as all that caused you fear and pain falls away and you recognize again what love is.”  (A Course of Love, C:5.1)

We are indeed blessed now!  When we recognize the Christ in us, we are recognizing a joining the human and the divine.  And in this joining, we are told, love reigns, “joining. . .ushers in love’s presence.”  (C:5.1) All that has caused fear and pain drops away, and we finally recognize what love really is.  This is the celebration, when we recognize the Self within, the Self no longer a captive of the ego. 

The Christ in us is wholly human and wholly divine, not omniscient, of course, because of our humanness.  We are ready to experience true reality in the fullness of the Christ-consciousness (Awakening) that now engulfs us.  We may as yet have captured only glimpses of this Christ-consciousness.  But the purpose of A Course of Love is to lead us to understandings that will cause the impediments in our psyche to drop away.  Jesus wants us to reach Christ-consciousness.  A consolidation of awakened individuals is the best hope that we have for a world in disarray, lost in pain and suffering, lost in conflict of one brother and sister against another.  But God, we might add, is the omniscient Presence that makes the decision of when we are ready.  Thus, there is an indecisive quality about Christ-consciousness and its coming that we can’t predict.  Only the omniscient God of us all knows when any one of us is truly ready.

There are things that we can do.  Things we must do.  We must give up judgments, one of the other.  We must give up fear (a biggie).  We must give up attack and planning that is not the direct result of guidance.  A Course of Love highlights the giving up of judgment and fear; A Course in Miracles highlights the giving up of attack, judgment, and unguided planning. These directives are meant to remove impediments to the coming of Christ-consciousness, and we can all recognize how difficult these directives will be if we don’t have divine help.

We do have divine help.  We need only ask.  The part of ourselves, the inner part, that is God, will respond.  Angels will also come to our aid, for we are not all alone in the universe.    Those of us who are in close contact with the Other Side will also come to recognize other entities that move to help us, though Jesus does not point this truth out, in so many words.  Jesus has said that he is always with us, always guiding us by the hand.  He is our rock, our salvation to a higher world in this world.  We do not have to die to enjoy the benefits of a higher presence directing our efforts.

Love Replaces Doubt

“All fear ends when proof of your existence is established.  All fear is based on your inability to recognize love and thus who you are and who God is.  How could you not have been fearful with doubt as powerful as this?  How can you not rejoice when doubt is gone and love fills all the space that doubt once occupied?”  (A Course of Love, C:4.5)

We have often doubted God, and not just in our youth, when many of us became agnostics and atheists because the chronology of Genesis did not jibe with evolution.  We have doubted that there could be a Higher Power Who could hear our prayers.  We wanted to be intellectually honest, but we didn’t listen to our hearts.  Our hearts knew all along that we weren’t alone in a fearsome universe.

A Course of Love questions, “How could you not have been fearful with doubt as powerful as this?”  (C:4.5).  This lack of love that we felt when we were being intellectually “honest” is a reason to feel fear.  What better reason could there be?

Now that most of believe in the Other Side, that channeling is possible and also probable, we are in a different place.  Our doubts have subsided, but we still are living the remnants of too much fear.  Fear has become a habit for us.  And this has to change if we are to live full lives in a new world that we are seeking to create.

When we put away our doubt, we will make substantial progress.  Just give the heart a chance to speak to you.  You will not be disappointed.  This may be the first indication that the Christ-Self is coming into its own, in us, in all of us.

The Embrace

“To know who you are and not to express who you are with your full power is the result of fear.  To know the safety and love of the embrace is to know no cause for fear, and thus to come into your true power.  True power is the power of miracles.”  (A Course of Love, C:20.28)

Seeing that we don’t express who we really are out of fear, let us contemplate what we might do to turn this situation around. 

Jesus includes in A Course of Love a sensitively-written passage in which he takes us into his arms and embraces us.  The passage exudes warmth, peace, and safety.  Here is the most cogent part:

“This is a call to move now into my embrace and let yourself be comforted.  Let the tears fall and the weight of your shoulders rest upon mine.  Let me cradle your head against my breast as I stroke your hair and assure you that it will be all right.  Realize that this is the whole world, the universe, the all of all in whose embrace you literally exist.  Feel the gentleness and the love.  Drink in the safety and the rest.  Close your eyes and begin to see with an imagination that is beyond thought and words.”  (C:20.2)

This reassuring passage is emblematic of the tone of all A Course of Love, for ACOL looks to the heart, first of all, to entice us to give up the false values of the ego, the false identity to which we have clung for so long.

In letting this memorable passage fill our minds, we are led beyond the bounds of the fear-ridden ego.  We will know that we want something different from what we have had all of our lives.  We know that the enticement that Jesus represents is the true value of love, the way that we will come home to ourselves.

When we come home to ourselves, we will be fully powerful for the first time, and who among us does not want a right sort of power?  The egoic power that we have known previously has given us flights of joy, but evermore it has dashed our feet on stones, and prompted tears of grievous regret.  We can be finished with these tantalizing fits.  We can stop sensing electric joy that dissolves into abject misery.  Jesus is showing us the way out when he encourages us to be who we truly are.

When we don’t fear anything, in the embrace, we are primed to come into our real power.  We are primed to be who we really are, in love with the whole world.  And for this miracle, we need give up nothing!  Nothing at all, for what the ego has given us has truly been nothing.  The ego gives but to take away.  And, even the giving is time-bound to be of short duration.  The “gifts” of the ego don’t satisfy very long at all.  Then we are off to a new goal.  And, ultimately, what we have accumulated becomes ash and dust at our feet.  No joy in the “everything” at all, for the everything is not enough.  “Is this all there is?” becomes a legitimate question for the vast majority of us.  And that is because we are looking for love in all the wrong places.

The best place to look for love is within the miracle.  Both A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love say a great deal about the power of miracles.  We aren’t to decide personally what miracles ought to be done, because we would be misguided if that were our attitude.  Jesus makes clear that he decides when and if a miracle is timely, because he is in charge of the Atonement.  But when we ask for something, such as love and the centrality of love in our life, we can be sure that Jesus is right there with us, cheering us along.  We can’t know how the miracle will happen, only that it will.  We are asking in God’s will for the relinquishment of fear and the shift to love in all our dealings.  Prayers such as these do not go unattended.

The power of miracles is said in A Course of Love to be the true power.  Would any of us want any other power?  We need and want to be reverent in our asking, supportive of whatever guidance we get.  We don’t need to launch into pipe dreams that become meaningless.  With the attraction of true power in our minds and hearts, we will know Love sooner rather than later.  And the fear that has hampered all our doings for many years will gradually fall away.

Transformation

There are many lesser conditions that are nonetheless extremely transformative, such as the replacement of special relationship with the devotion of holy relationship that we have already spoken of.  (A Course of Love, D:Day7.12)

Here we see that the turning over of special relationships to oblivion does, in fact, constitute a tremendous transformation when the replacement is made by a holy relationship.  We feel contented and safe, something that special relationships could never give us.  We know, in our bones, that this one—this holy relationship—will continue eternally, if not in physical form then in ethereal.  Even if the relationship should end, we would know that it wasn’t a real ending.  In A Course in Miracles, Jesus says that all who meet will meet again.  And we can understand that this is on the Other Side, or, if we believe in reincarnation, then in another life.  This can give us some of that content that we long to have, for we long for permanence in a changing world.  Eternity gives us that permanence.

If we long to be content in this world, what are our options?  We must indeed turn over everything that has disturbed ongoing content.  And special relationships are at the top of the list.  We know this intuitively, though we may still think, with our superficial mind, that specialness gives us something that we want.

It doesn’t.  Specialness only disturbs our peace.  And it is peace that augurs content.

Be glad to transform all relationships to holiness.  We will never regret this action of the will.  When it is done, completed and finished, we will know that we belong to everybody, and that this connection takes nothing from the significant others with whom we share this lifetime.

Love’s Embrace

Now you must forget the idea of needing to maintain specialness.  A key aid in helping you to put this temptation behind you is the idea of the holy relationship in which all exist in unity and within the protection of love’s embrace.  (A Course of Love, T3:16.15)

Let us realize that being special, even to ourselves, never gave us anything that we wanted.  A few others may have found us special also, but most everyone else resented the competitiveness that thought that we were superior to them.  This competitiveness has to go.  We are reassured on a daily basis when we cooperate with others, when we recognize that others, and we, are on the same wavelength, that we are equal in the sight of God as His children.

I used to be quite competitive.  I remember telling a friend at work, after lunch one day that we had enjoyed together, what my goals were in work.  They were ambitious.  She responded, “Don’t get too far ahead of us,” meaning the others in the reference unit.

She was right, because she sensed that my ambition would be a divisive factor in our close-knit working group.  And I never did fit in well with that particular group.  I had to go on to another before I found acceptance and peace in my working environment.  And get more steeped in A Course in Miracles.

When we recognize that all of us are held in an embrace of love and unity, as One, we are recognizing what is true.  And this truth will save us.  Our relationships, holy now, will give us solace and keep us safe.  Competitive no longer, we join in a camaraderie borne of cooperation.  We are finally living right, and our comrades in work (and elsewhere) recognize this change in us.  We are one of them, in every sense of the word.  When we acknowledge equality, we are accepted and even loved.

This does not take away from the fact that we may have experienced Christ-consciousness, and not all others in our circle will have done so.  This only means that we have walked a little farther along, not that we are better than another.  It is necessary that we share what we have discovered as soon as our brothers and sisters express interest in knowing what makes us different.  Holy relationship invites sharing.  And we feel better for easing another’s way, even ever so slightly.

Balancing in a New World

“Making the heart of Mother love, that natural duad to the Father love that has reigned, brings the rising of the feminine and the balancing, at long last, of the masculine.”  Mirari

This quotation concisely summarizes what Mirari is about.  Mary of Nazareth is writing primarily to women in Mirari, but here she uses an important word that might be overlooked in the call for female presence in this world.  The word is “balancing.”

Mary is not trying to exclude men.  She stresses the feminine so much because she is attempting to corral women into greater solidarity and greater activity in our world.  But she, of all people, with her close relationship to her soulmate, Jesus, knows that our world needs men and their contribution ever so much.  Men have dominated, sometimes harshly, for many long years, and her “balancing” is seeking to end this imbalance between the genders.

Ask what our task is to be.  Ask, whether we are men or women.  We need guidance in creating a new world—and we know that a new world was the call of Jesus in A Course of Love.  Mary echoes this desire in her manifesto, Mirari.  She is doing her part to join in the groundswell of change that Jesus is heralding.  She too is so heralding. Wait for God to speak to us, God to reveal our part.  Then act from the whispers in our mind and the calling of our heart.

Assuming Form in Bodies

These examples of your former ideas about new beginnings have simply been used to demonstrate why you cannot approach this new beginning as you have those of the past.  What will assist you most, as the translation of the old thought system for the new continues, are the beliefs that you adopted with the assistance of ‘A Treatise on Unity:’

You are accomplished.

Giving and receiving are one in truth.

There is no loss but only gain within the laws of love.

Special relationships have been replaced by holy relationship.

What we are adding now to these beliefs is the idea that these beliefs can be represented in form. (A Course of Love, T3:15.14 – 15.19)

We are being led, ever so gently, to a realization that here on earth, in our physical form, with our good mind and heart, we can have blessings that were formerly thought to be ours only after death, on the Other Side.  We can now know Awakening or Christ-consciousness, called enlightenment in Eastern religions.  It is there, out there, beckoning to us.  And it will be a gentle transformation, for Jesus has prepared us, with gentleness itself, in A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love.

Previously I have known two instances of Awakening that, unfortunately, did not last because my ego intruded.  That is the danger for all of us.  We can transition into Awakening, and then have it fail to be sustained, for we are not really ready to sustain it.  We need to approach Awakening with an egoless frame of mind and heart, sure that we will be helped.  We know more now, for we have weakened and then discarded our egos through Jesus’ channeled works.

If we want to recognize we are accomplished, we need only realize that this is the ideal state.  And we have attained it, mystically, before we attain it in form.

As we give, we receive.  The giving comes first, however imperfect it may be in the beginning.

If we want to recognize gain without loss, this is ours when we are immersed in love.  Always love.

Being immersed in love prepares us entirely for the holy relationship.  And it is holy relationship that will ultimately save us.

So these tenets of unity exist in form now.  We can enjoy them this side of death.

And all will be well.

Holiness

The holy relationship has been accomplished by the joining of the mind and heart in unity.  The holy relationship is with the Self, the Self that abides in unity with all within the house of truth.  This relationship makes the Self one with all and so brings the holiness of the Self to all.  (A Course of Love, T3:15.10)

The first and most important relationship is with the Self–the inner Christ Self–and God Himself (called the Self in Its largest dimensions).  When this relationship is formed anew and aright, it changes everything.  Our heart and mind are melded into one, and this one is the same One with Whom we are merged in the Godhead Himself/Herself.  With this joining of heart and mind, we are primed to have all good things to come to us.  We are, at last, on the right track, “separate” from God no longer, even in illusion.  And we are not in illusion any longer, but the supreme reality, true reality, a reality that does not fade with each passing day.

When mind and heart are joined, I feel a warmth that is not of this world.  I once was accosted at night by a stranger who did not mean me well.  Just before he touched me, I felt a Warmth that gave me a tremendous sense of safety and God-given care.  And this sense carried me through the experience without any trauma.  I ran and I screamed, and he fled.  My voice and God’s grace had saved me.  In that moment, with the warm feeling, I was in unity of mind and heart with that warmth, though this was years before A Course of Love was channeled.  I only knew that God had been very, very close to me in that moment.

How do we invite the melding of heart and mind?  We get quiet, we invite warmth, we invite God.  If we open ourselves to God’s grace, He will descend upon us, prompting us to join mind and heart into a Unity that will solve all problems, release all neuroses, give us a new lease on life.

Be quiet today, just for a moment.  A moment is all that it takes to allow God to speak to us in the Unity in which He abides.

The New Beginning

The new beginning you are called to now is a new beginning that, like all others that you have offered or attempted, will take place in relationship.  The difference is that this new beginning will take place in holy rather than special relationship.  (A Course of Love, T3:15.9)

We have arrived at a good place now.  We are beginning anew, as we have in the past, but with a difference.  Our new beginning will no longer be housed in special relationships that only promised us the good but did not deliver consistently.  Our new beginning, this time, will come in the warmth of holy relationships.  We have found the elixir, and we will not turn back from its bounty now.

How do we know that we are surrounded by holy relationships?  We are not out for #1 anymore, at least not exclusively.  We love others as we love ourselves, for giving and receiving love is one.  We know that when we reach out, our reach will be met by reciprocation, for holiness invites holiness.  If our reach finds an individual who is as yet only capable of special relationship, we will not be inclined in that direction, because we will know better.  Our reach goes out to holiness, and holiness is returned to us.  There is no better way to live life.

What about rejection?   I have known rejection in my life, but only in relationship that was “special,” in that my ego was attempting to establish a basis for continuing contact that was not the best for either of us.  Of course, I did not know this at the time, and the episode was very painful, frustrating, and humiliating.

Now I know better.  Holy relationship does not hurt.  Its joy is reciprocated, for we know intuitively what relationship to pursue, and which to turn aside.  Our guidance does what it is intended to do:  It guides.  And in the guidance comes a new life of happiness and smooth sailing as well.  We walk a pathway that has no stones that invite tripping ourselves up.  We walk a smooth pathway.

Just as when we pursued special relationships, our new beginnings now are embedded in our relationships.  But what a difference the holy makes!  It is simply all the difference in the world.  We blossom under the tutelage of holy relationships.  And there is never any temptation to return to the special relationship that got away.  This is the advantage in turning to prayer for prompting as to what to do.  Prayer does direct relationships for the good of all involved.

Holiness in relationships allows new beginnings with a flair that we have heretofore not enjoyed.  Our happiness has wings. 

And we know that what God has ordained in relationship, holy relationship, will come to pass.

Holding Our Breath

Holding on to what you think will meet your needs is like holding your breath.  Your breath cannot long be held.  It is only through the inhaling and exhaling, the give and take of breathing that you live.  Each time you are tempted to think that your needs can only be met in special ways by special relationships, remember this example of holding your breath.  Think in such a way no longer than you can comfortably hold your breath.  Release your breath and release this fear and move from special to holy relationship.  (A Course of Love, T1:9.17)

We have been trying to hold our breath for eons, hoping against hope that what one special relationship did not give us ultimately can be met by yet another.  Our special relationships all fail us eventually.  Love turns to hate, and we know not what we did wrong.  Always we blame the other person for not living up to the unwritten agreement to be there for us anytime, anywhere.  We feel betrayed.

This is a script that has been played out in our various dramas for far too long.  The only true assurance that we can have from another comes when we have let our special relationship to that person blossom into a holy relationship.  Now we know in our bones that this person will never let us down, that love will stay love and not fall into alienation and even hate.  We are holding our breath no longer.  We know that the safety that we long to have in a human being can be counted upon.  We are safe, finally, and we know it to be true.

This is what happens in long-term marriages that stay fresh.  We discover how to mesh our needs and wants with those of another whom we love unconditionally, come what may.  We know that if our marriage should end, the love will not; the love is eternal now, and we have this assurance as we live out our time on earth.  This world can touch this blessing not.  We are living our dream of eternal love, and it is our brother or sister, our partner in life, who makes the living out of our lives truly meaningful.  He or she is our way back to God, a holy relationship that promises all things, and keep those promises.  Our forgiveness even becomes meaningless, for we recognize that there is nothing we need forgive.  The significant other is significant only in that we live in close proximity; we don’t look to the other for outrageous answers.  We live and let live, in the holiness which God intends for us.

All of us have seen this love, but perhaps fleetingly.  We want it for ourselves.  And we can have it when we give up thinking that specialness is our due.  Holiness is our due.  And with our inheritance as favored children of God, all of us are favored in a holiness that does not play favorites.

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.

We Live in God

“God is a marriage of love because everything, male and female as you consider it, resides in God, as well as in all true creation.”  COL bk.4, 1:IV

We are composed of love—through and through.  We are living, many of us, in madness still, because the ego has not yet died in us.  When the ego does die, we will know what it is to live in God.  We will be part of “all true creation.”

What we have made of ourselves in this world is not “true creation,” for our mistakes have made us labor under extreme conditions of depravity.  Never God’s intention, He “let go” when we rebelled (A Course of Love concept).  What else could He do?  We as parents even do this with our rebellious teenagers.  Neither we, in God’s sight, nor teens, are yet mature—or we wouldn’t make such havoc for ourselves.

Let the love that we are embrace us and give us new life.  In this time of spring in the northern hemisphere, we can be at home in our world when we recognize that all of life can be our springtime—a time of new growth, new growth into greater immersion in God.

An End to Struggle

Note: The following is an excerpt from Chapter 10 of the blog author’s new book, Being Who You Are. The chapter title is “Elevated Self of Form.” For information about ordering, click on the home icon.

There is a way to stop struggling, and it is an easy way. We have gotten used to struggling because we have had a personal self that has been dictated to by a false self, a self that listened to the dictates of the ego. The ego was, therefore, a false self that sought to elevate each of us above all of our brothers and sisters. Inside, we knew that this was a false view, and so we endured highs and lows. With every dramatic high, we were pitched down again to a low, for in some way we knew that comparisons were detrimental, toxic, to ourselves. Our dramas seemed to know no end. And, oh, how we suffered.

Our drama can come to an end now, as we truly realize, often for the first time, that we are actually all equal in spirit. The new Self of elevated form will be a Christ-conscious being who recognizes this new equality. We will take from spirit the best that we can, from the larger Self who is One with God, and then we will offer the best of ourselves to our brothers and sisters, our equals in the eyes of God. Only in time are we unequal in understanding. And time does not really exist, because it is an illusion. In eternity, we do catch a glimpse of the fact of equality. In this glimpse is contained all that we need to shift into a higher consciousness.

We give up the anxieties into which our ego had plunged us. We were fearful of being “found out” as imperfect. Now we eliminate judgments of ourselves and other people, for in equality there is no point at all in judgment. When we have given up the fear and the judgment, we have done all the preparing we can personally do. God will move quickly when He sees we are ready, for it is in the celestial realm that the decision is made to alter our mind and heart to Christ-consciousness. God Himself makes this choice of when to lift us up to become Christ-conscious beings.

A Course of Love says at one point that our scientists would be able to track this alteration in brain chemistry if they knew what to look for. (D:Day6.21) This is a startling assertion. There is a physical change coming about as we adopt the physical Self of form as our being on Earth. This is where we are heading. The benefits will be grand indeed. Our prayers will bring that time, for each of us, closer. Our prayers will teach us how to have a healthy mind, a healthy mind informed by our heart. The heart and its feelings will plot our future course. It will be a better course than our mind ever could dream up.

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.

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.