Transformation

“This transformation from a state of fear to Love, or from ignorance (the ignoring of truth) to enlightenment (the embracing and acknowledging of truth) occurs for each mind within the dream in a very specific way.  That is, it must occur according to what is required to release the patterns that have settled into that particular mind.  In a general way, those patterns are the same for everyone.  But in their expression, they take on a perfect uniqueness.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Lesson 22, Page 262)

We must be prepared for transformation through a cleansing of our innermost thoughts. Practically, this means that the subconscious mind gradually opens to those attitudes that need to be changed so that we are truly walking God’s way. Transformation, when following the guidance given in Jesus’ channeled works, is gentle and usually gradual.

We first get glimpses, called a satori in Eastern religion. And then these moment of extreme peace lengthen so that hours may pass in true peace. But there is a particular moment, which we will remember, when transformation comes upon us to stay. If we walk in Love rather than fear, this new state remains with us.

And life is never the same again.

How We Look upon Our Brother is How We Look upon Ourselves

“To look upon the fear of God does need some preparation.  Only the sane can look on stark insanity and raving madness with pity and compassion, but not with fear.  For only if they share in it does it seem fearful, and you do share in it until you look upon your brother with perfect faith and love and tenderness.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-19.IV.D.11)

Here we are encouraged to look upon our brother with forgiveness wrought of faith, love, tenderness.  He deserves no less, and neither do we, for how we look upon our brother is how we look upon ourselves.  There is no difference.

We see God as we see ourselves, and we are lost in insanity, and therefore we fear God, for somehow we think that He too is lost in insanity.  It is not true.  But we have to recognize that we need to be sane to see God clearly.  And we are heading in that direction, toward sanity.

We have long been insane, lost in madness.  It does not have to be so, it does not have to remain so.  We can step away from madness just as much as have wallowed in it for eons.  Now is our time.  Now is the time to turn away from insanity.  Then we will finally see God clearly as the God of Love that He truly is.

When we look on our brother with compassion, we also look upon ourselves with compassion.  Nothing else is right for either of us.  But as long as we are lost in egoic fear, the way will seem long and, indeed, impossible.

It is not impossible.  Just let a little love into our lives, and we quickly see that this other way, the better way, is what we have been looking for all of our lives.

Seek the love tomorrow, the compassion, the sanity.

We will be richly rewarded.

With the Holy Spirit

“Every obstacle that peace must flow across is surmounted in just the same way; the fear that raised it yields to the love beyond, and so the fear is gone.  And so it is with this.  The desire to get rid of peace and drive the Holy Spirit from you fades in the presence of the quiet recognition that you love Him.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-19.IV.D.5)

The obstacles to our peace are kept in place by our cooperation.  We would remove our cooperation from the equation, and then we will know love as we have never known it before.  We will no longer want to get rid of peace; we will know that we love our Guide, the Holy Spirit, and we will open ourselves, on a continuing basis, to His guidance.

This is the obvious way that A Course in Miracles is teaching us on almost every page.  Turn to the Holy Spirit, succumb to His guidance, and be healed.

We will be living in quiet now.  We will understand that guidance comes to us in quiet moments, normally, though sometimes the situation is urgent enough that the Holy Spirit gets through to us even when we are in turmoil.

We are in turmoil only when the ego has arisen in us.  We can turn aside just as easily as we welcomed the ego.  And turn aside we must, if we are to be saved from disaster.  We would not entertain disaster in any shape at all.  

We would know God’s peace today.  Let us pray for the establishment of a good mood, an uplifted mood, and in this mood, love comes in easily.

Where We Dwell Eternally

“Though we have said it unto you many times, we ask you to truly take pause and to consider this one statement:  We come forth to join with you, not from a place above you or beyond you, but a place in which you already dwell eternally.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Lesson 22, Page 261)

We are at home in Heaven, something we have trouble believing because bad things still happen to us.  When we decide that Heaven is what we want, and ALL that we want, we are on the way to eliminating the bad things.  Believe this.  Take it to heart.

This statement is coming from the lineage, the group of souls who are Jesus’ helpers in the endeavor to save this world.  Membership is open to us, too.  We just have to go God’s, and Jesus’, way.

Ask to be told more.  This will come to pass.  We are living in the Now in time, and, yes, in the Heaven of our awareness.  If we don’t fully understand, then ask to be enlightened about what we can reasonably believe.

Christ Will Have Come to Us, Recognized at Last

“The fourth obstacle to be surmounted hangs like a heavy veil before the face of Christ.  Yet as His face rises beyond it, shining with joy because He is in His Father’s Love, peace will lightly brush the veil aside and run to meet Him, and to join with Him at last.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-19.IV.D.2)

We are all a Christ in miniature.  Jesus shares his Christhood with us. And when we have learned to see the face of Christ in all our brothers, we will be home free at last.  This quotation shows the way in which Christ’s face in our brothers rises to meet us; the veil is lifted.  This is true pleasure in the moment, when we see Christ in our brothers.  We are being blessed in this moment.  It is a harbinger of better days ahead.

We can pray to see Christ in all our brothers.  It is a mystical experience that will not last for most people.  But in the happening do we see what we are to see in our better moments for the rest of our lives.  For Christ is behind the veil of physical form in everyone.

We will join with our brother, metaphorically, when we see Christ in him.  We will want to be one with him.  And it will be granted us, if only that for holy instant in time.

We will be at peace.  Christ will have come to us, recognized at last.

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)

“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.

. . .

“This space you can turn back to holds no judgment and no fear, and so it is the repository of all that has proceeded from love.  There it keeps all love’s gifts safe for you.  Love’s gifts are gifts of creation or extension, gifts you have both given and received.  Each act of love is added to the space in the universe that is yours and has become part of the whole along with you.  All that has proceeded from fear is nothing, and has no existence apart from your own thoughts.”  (A Course of Love, C:17.12, C:17.14)

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.

Holy Love

“The delights of our holy love will be given to all.  Thus, those who are most called to love can enjoy our beauty, and join our song of praise and gratitude.

“To give ourselves entirely will be the hallmark of our expression, serving love, the joyful fruit of our union.  By virtue of this, the world will have a new light.  Those who seek comfort will find it.  Those who long for truth will receive it.  Those who grope for love will stop looking, for because of our divine union, they will recognize that love is what they are, and that their being goes wherever they go.”

“The time of truth has come.”  Choose Only Love, bk.7, Prelude.

In the Prelude to the last book in the series, we are ushered into a new era, a new era that all of us reading will experience.  

We would not have gotten this far in Choose Only Love unless we were taking to heart its bounteous message.

Take our places in the great endeavor we are embarking upon–a new world on Earth.  We will succeed, for we have the Love backing us all the way.  The positive will win out in the end.  Negativism defeats itself, if not immediately, eventually.

Displacement of Love with 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 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.

Love Overcomes the Ego

“When anything seems to you to be a source of fear, when any situation strikes you with terror and makes your body tremble and the cold sweat of fear comes over it, remember it is always for one reason; the ego has perceived it as a symbol of fear, a sign of sin and death.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-19.IV.C.11)

This quotation helps us to understand the dynamics of the ego.  The ego is a part of our belief about ourselves that will not rest until we are miserable, though it pretends to offer us the good.  It does not offer us the good.

Particularly poignant as a expression of fear, this quotation assures us that the terror that we sometimes feel is ego-generated.  Love would never treat us like this, and love never does.  We are “in our egos” when we quail in fear against this unnamed something that fills us with cold shaking.  The ego thinks that this something out there is a sign of “sin and death,” and so it encourages us to be fearful.

If, even for a moment, we bypass the bitter dregs of death, the stubborn and witchy attempts to handle this unnamed fear, we will be OK.  But the only real choice is love, a manifestation of love by forgiveness.  Give the angry deed over to the Holy Spirit and His judgment; He alone can handle what has aroused such strong negative emotions.

The ego thrills, and the ego dashes to the ground.  There are always oscillations, and there will always be.  It the way in which we come to see that the ego is not the way that we want to go.  The ego is constantly being undone.  And well that it is.

Love only satisfies; love only cools the overwrought emotions.  Dwell with God in the form of the Holy Spirit, and so the brittle and rigid emotions will subside.  God knows us best, of course, and the Holy Spirit will guide us out of even this abyss.

Your Purpose Is Nursed by Angels

“The end of sin, which nestles quietly in the safety of your relationship, protected by your union with your brother, and ready to grow into a mighty force for God is very near.  The infancy of salvation is carefully guarded by love, preserved from every thought that would attack it, and quietly made ready to fulfill the mighty task for which it was given you.  Your newborn purpose is nursed by angels, cherished by the Holy Spirit and protected by God Himself.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-19.IV.C.9)

More beautiful words.  We are viewing the end of sin, when we forgive our brother and welcome him into our heart with love.  Overwhelming love that knows no opposite.  We are just now moving into salvation; it will be a while before that salvation reaches its ultimate in Awakening.  At least for most people.  But each path to salvation is unique to us as individuals.  The Holy Spirit does not have a cookie cutter approach to our life in this world.

This is one of the few times in A Course in Miracles when Jesus alludes to the Other Side, with entities that attend us.  Here he refers to angels; our purpose is “nursed by angels.”  And our purpose well needs to be, for we are infants in the business of salvation.  We may have been “saved,” in a traditional sense, long ago, but it is unlikely that we have forgiven fully.  And forgiveness is the means of salvation in ACIM.  We need to carve this into our hearts.  We forgive, then we come to understand, and then when the forgiveness is total, we have a holy relationship with our brother.

The totality of all that forgiveness holds out to us may reach us suddenly, but usually it reaches us more slowly.  We give up judgment gradually, listening to the Holy Spirit only in snatches.  

We need to listen always, for He is identifies our way out of the mire in which we have become embedded.  Ask for help in forgiveness today; this is our quickest route to a holy relationship with not just one, but all, our brothers.

The Time of the Truth of Love

“The delights of our holy love will be given to all.  Thus, those who are most called to love can enjoy our beauty, and join our song of praise and gratitude.

“To give ourselves entirely will be the hallmark of our expression, serving love, the joyful fruit of our union.  By virtue of this, the world will have a new light.  Those who seek comfort will find it.  Those who long for truth will receive it.  Those who grope for love will stop looking, for because of our divine union, they will recognize that love is what they are, and that their being goes wherever they go.”

“The time of truth has come.”  Choose Only Love, bk.7, Prelude.

I worry about people who have heard that love is the Answer so many times that they are numbed by it.  But love IS the Answer, and until we relinquish our egoic tendencies and welcome unconditional trust and love into our live, we will never know consistent peace.

This means to give up attack in any form.  Doing so makes a giant leap into the arms of God, and His Voice, the Holy Spirit.  When we are agitated and inclined to argue, we are indeed lost to God.  He can’t get through to us when we are agitated.  Pray today for a surcease of agitation, and give a welcome to the peace that supplants it.

We are into the time of the Second Coming of Christ.  Nowhere in Jesus’ recent channeled writings are we told that this might be a physical incarnation.  But we ARE told that we ourselves are part of this Second Coming.  Jesus shares his Christhood with us.  

And when we respond rightly, in love, we respond with one accord to be better future.

There Is No Room for the Tempest of Rough Seas

“There is no room for madness here, nor for the tempest of rough seas.  Here there is only life, peace, and creation.  Nothing will disturb your mind or heart anymore, since everything that afflicted your soul has been forgotten forever, erased from the memory of your heart in love.  Now there will only be expressions of being, extensions of love, and unlimited giving serving the cause and effect of love.  Choose Only Love, bk.7, 1:I.  Message from Jesus.

Here is a fantastic promise from Jesus.  By Book 7 of Choose Only Love, if we have taken all seven books to heart, we are ready to experiment continuous peace.  Choose Only Love has cocooned us with love, given us insights by doing so that take us home to God.  We are not going to fail now unless we abandon our faith.  And who among us would do so at this late date?

We did entertain a “tiny, mad idea” of separation from God, something we first learned from Jesus in A Course in Miracles.  But now “There is no room for madness,” and we have walked by the direction pointed out, back to God.

We may still have certain patterns of thought, called “egoic patterns” by A Course of Love, that will occasionally give us pause.  But even this is very, very rare now–if it happens at all.  We walk humbly before our God, sure of His promises, sure of His guidance, sure of His love.

Love in the Quiet Garden

“Love, too, would set a feast before you, on a table covered with a spotless cloth, set in a quiet garden where no sound but singing and a softly joyous whispering is ever heard.  This is a feast that honors your holy relationship, and at which everyone is welcomed as an honored guest.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-19.IV.A.16)

Lovely passage, melodic in its choice of words.  This quotation is meant to lighten our attitude toward the holy relationship.  The holy relationship, unlike the special, is a place of calm and quiet (note the “quiet garden”).  The special relationship has flights of joy, but these are always followed by times of dashed hopes; we climb upward, only to dash our feet on a stone on the ground.

Note of these vicissitudes are present in the calm and peaceful, and joyous always, holy relationship.  This is a relationship that is permeated, through and through, with love.  We don’t have to strain toward some sort of unnatural high; we are cocooned in an ocean of love that knows no bounds.

And, once we have achieved the holy relationship, we would never go back to the unholy, or special, again.  As we make one relationship holy, we would want to make all of our relationships with brothers holy.

And we can.  Just put our minds to it.  It is not hard.  Forgiveness is key, as always.

Trust the Momentum that Seems to Be Shaping Your Life

“Above all, beloved friends, remember:  there are no mistakes!  You are free to trust the momentum that seems to be shaping your life.  For you are the one who has complied with it by inviting the Holy Spirit to take you home.  You are the one that has prayed for acceleration.  Therefore, also be the one who accepts the grace being offered unto you.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery,  Chapter 21, Page 260)

It is a startling idea that there are no mistakes! Even the “tiny, mad idea” that started us on the road to separation from God was not a “mistake,” per se. God let us go when we were lost in adolescent rebellion.

And now He is welcoming us home, again at our bidding. When things seem rough, realize that this is “acceleration,” guided by the Holy Spirit.

We need to remain compliant, flexible, in the hands of the Holy Spirit. Further rebellion will be counter-productive. Drop any rebellion, and decide today to come home to God, to be home in God.

Surrender

“God is already here.  I am forever God’s.  I surrender.

“Surrender is the fruit of allowance.  Surrender is the fruit of forgiveness.  Surrender is the same as the atonement.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery,  Chapter 21, Page 259)

The idea of surrender is dear to my heart.  Before I discovered Jesus’ recent channeled works, I knew that surrender would be “my way.”  I knew that God was asking me to surrender to a plan for my life that seemed daunting

God is living through us.  He is not a “separate” deity.  His way works, when we listen and follow the prompts that harm no one else, and help us.  His sure guidance keeps us walking along the right pathway.

Here The Way of Mastery says that surrender to God is the same as atonement.  This I find a startling idea.  When we know what God is asking of us, and we follow, that is both surrender and atonement.

Our rebellion is over.

Pure Love Manifested

“Blessed soul, beauty of eternal life!  Here we are, united in a time and place that has merged into the eternal.  Together we are the light of the world.  United we are the sun of life.  From our relationship of pure love, a new reality has been born, a reality pure and holy.  We are one mind, one heart, one holy being.  In our unity we are as we have always been–the immutability of being, expressing itself forever in glory.”  Choose Only Love, bk.7, 1:I.  Message from Jesus.

Jesus’ words are comforting.  He is reassuring us that we have never left the arms of God–and of himself.  He blesses us with his words.

If we have ever felt “not enough”–and all of us have–then we need feel insufficiency no longer.  In the midst of this quotation, we find that our saving grace is in our unity one with another and with God.

We have not changed–not in reality.  We took a detour that we now regret, though because everything is actually perfect, we know that God also, with us, made the decision for separation.  It was first our choice as free beings of free will, but He “let go” because we were so eager to experience all that could be experienced.  

Now we come home, never to leave again.  We are wrapped up in a cocoon of love, and lest we forget, we have God’s promptings to keep us in the know.

Resistance

“All suffering is the resistance of reality.  All awakening and healing is the letting go of resistance.  Forgiveness.  Allowance.”(“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery,  Chapter 21, Page 259)

What we resist becomes stronger, and when we resist pain, turning it in suffering, we are on the wrong track.  

Acceptance is the way for suffering to be eased, though this is  a hard teaching to wrap our minds/hearts around.  But healing is in its wings.  A healing of emotions, perhaps, or maybe a healing of the physical pain as well.

God will answer.  Remember that the pain is at least partly mental, and this mental healing is what will transpire first.  Then ideas will come about healing the physical pain as well.

Relax into the pain.  Let it come.  This is true allowance.

Choice for a Physical Self

“Let’s return a moment to the choice that was made for the human experience, the choice to express whom you are in the realm of physicality.  You were not ‘better’ or more ‘right’ before this choice was made than you are now.  You made a choice consistent with the laws of creation and the steps of creation outlined above.  From this choice, many experiences ensued.  Some of these experiences were the result of fear, some the result of love.  The choice to express who you are in physical terms was not a choice made of fear but made of love.  A physical self is not inconsistent with the laws of God or of creation.  It is simply a choice.”  (A Course of Love, T3:12.8)

A Course of Love reassures us that physicality is not a second-best choice.  It is purely within the laws of God, though the way in which this choice worked out for us was flawed.  We developed the ego, and in so doing, our physicality took on a role that has hindered our full development in this world.

Now w e are faced with a new choice:  an elevated Self of form, form without the ego.  And, indeed, the latter half of A Course of Love indicates that we have given up the ego as a bad idea.  And the Self of form will know God in an intimate way that the egoic self never did, never could.

This blessing ought to give us reason to be thankful.  We are not trapped by bodies at all, though we might have once viewed our life on earth in these terms.  We can live well and happily in the flesh.

Let’s set about doing so today.

“Soul, You Have Arrived”

“Soul, you have arrived.  Before time began, I conceived you in my heart to be the beauty of my being.  Before the wind could blow–since movement of matter had not yet been created–you were in my divine mind as a perpetual lover.  My joy was to wait for this time, a time like no other, to come, a time when the light of glory would begin to shine as never before, through you, my soul in love, my divine child.”  Choose Only Love, Book 7, Prelude.  “A message from the Voice of Christ through a choir of Angels, in the presence of Archangel Raphael and Archangel Gabriel.”

This is not specifically said to be from Jesus, but perhaps from the Spirit of Christ, whom we all share.  It is a glorious praising of God for where we have arrived today in this world.

We are in Book 7 of Choose Only Love, the book that is the culmination of all that has gone before.  We can take unto ourselves whatever seems right about this message.  If we think that we are still ego-driven, then we will postpone this message for a future time.  If the ego has indeed been banished, we will rejoice that our future will be unlike anything that has gone before.

Rest a while in these words, for they are an affirmation of just how far we have traveled along the road back to God.  The praise that this passage reveals is shared by the cosmos.  We ought also to share that praise.

Ordinary Moment Provides the Doorway

“My goodness, I don’t have to go anywhere.  It’s right here in front of me.  This ordinary moment provides the doorway to the transformation of consciousness itself.  All I have to do is bring a little willingness to it.  And guess what?  I have all power under Heaven and Earth to do just that!  Nobody can take it from me!  Nobody can change the freedom in which I live!  I am the one who can bring that little willingness to this moment and let the raindrops hit the window.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Chapter 21, Page 258)

This quotation is an imaginary conversation that we might have when we realize that all is well in our little world.  We can relax.  ALL that is asked of us is a little willingness to listen to guidance.  A “little.”  And this makes all the difference.

We are in charge of our little world, what we see and what we experience.  WE!  This sounds unbelievable, but there it is.  By the law of attraction, what we focus on materializes.  A quick thought will not make materialization happen, and of course this is good.  But that which we dwell upon becomes our lot in life.  What we focus upon over the long haul is the very stuff we will live through.

If we want to improve our lot in life, we simply have to raise our sights to God and listen to His Voice, the Holy Spirit.  We know that we don’t do well when we seek to walk through this world all alone.  But there is a Power within us that solves the whole problem.  Turn to that Power, and watch the chains of life experience transform into golden light.

There Is Nothing Outside You

“There is nothing outside you.  That is what you must ultimately learn, for it is the realization that the Kingdom of Heaven is restored to you.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-18.VI.1)

This passage puzzled me for a long time.  I think it is a statement of a holographic universe:  Each part contains the whole.  So we are a part of the All, the One, that is God—and therefore there is nothing outside of us.  We and our brother—all of our brothers—are One.  Everything is alive with energy, the stuff of the universe.  

We return to Heaven when we realize that we never really left at all.  What leaving we did was all a mirage, an illusion, something that never happened in actuality at all.  The separation never occurred!  The separation could not have occurred because we are a part of God, and so we can be “separate” from him only in illusion, not reality at all.

These ruminations reflect the theology of A Course in Miracles.  We will read further on, and then we will see the theology becoming all of one cloth.  There is no strain.  We will wake up to find ourselves at home in Heaven, the Oneness that we never really left at all.

Happy Dreams that Compose Our Lives

“Happy dreams come true, not because they are dreams, but only because they are happy.  And so they must be loving.  Their message is, ‘Thy Will be done,’ and not, ‘I want it otherwise.’”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-18.V.4)

Happy dreams come to us from the Holy Spirit as we loose the world of the ego for something infinitely better.  As our minds began changing, we look out on a forgiven world, and in that forgiveness do we see a better world.  We project from within, and the within is not so dark as it once was, so fraught with egoic madness.

The Holy Spirit knows that we will not be happy until we listen to guidance from His Higher Power.  Until we say, “Thy Will be done.”

We do not have to imagine that our free will is being contradicted.  Actually, our free will is enhanced, for in the whole process we learn that the Holy Spirit actually speaks for us.  He chooses that which will make us the happiest, and that is always the real will that we have heretofore not known how to exert.  We have made many mistakes as we sought to create a comfortable environment for ourselves in this world.  We have not created anything that remained comfortable for very long, to our chagrin.

But all of this will change as we start following intuition that is divinely inspired.  The Holy Spirit points out the best way for us, the way that we will be happiest.  And only a very conflicted person would fail to see this after a short while.  Give guidance time to act in our lives, and we will quickly see that the divine way is what we have really wanted all along.  Every decision will be made for us; we will not have to struggle at all.  And peace and joy will become emblematic of our new lives.

God’s Gifts for Us Redeemed

“Thoughts from Heaven feel like light and breath; they are full of certainty, can never be forgotten, and they bring a great ‘amount’ of truth in the blink of an eye.”  Choose Only Love, Book 7, A Message from Sebastian, II.

Thoughts from Heaven are manna to our spirit.  When we enjoy a true revelation, the gist of it stays with us, never to be completely forgotten and often changing our lives in drastic ways.  “Light and breath,” Sebastian says.  We might ask, Can this type of revelation really happen to us?

Yes!  A resounding yes!  Revelation is always from God to us, and is more lasting than a miracle in our hearts.  Revelation is the way of the future, for those of us reading this far in Choose Only Love have, it is said in its pages (in different words), that we have traveled far along our pathway back to God, and He is able to get through to us quite remarkably.  Our struggles have been greatly reduced, and we are ready for revelation in our very being.  We live a peaceful life, marred only temporarily by those things that cause us regret.

Does this sound too good to be true?  It is truly not too good to be true.  God trusts us to keep His universes going through our expressions of being, our Love for all that is.  He could not gift us with all He would wish so long as we were recalcitrant.  But He can now.

And He does.

Living without Fear and Embracing All

“The mind then, that becomes the one who is no longer in fear, no longer in resistance, is the mind that has forgiven all things, including itself.  The mind that can embrace all phenomena that arise and pass away with passion, with joy, with aliveness, with innocence, with simplicity, that mind cannot taste death.  It literally transmutes death, even as death seems to be passing by.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Chapter 21, Page 257)

When we are no longer afraid of death, death will seem to be passing us by–even at the point of the end of our time on earth.  We will thus not taste of death in our thoughts for long years prior, as well as when the time comes.  Our hearts will be free of fear.  We will accept all things, even this, being willing to “have it so.”  This type of relinquishment is a secret of how to approach life at any time, and not just when life is ending.

“Be willing to have it so.”  This is acceptance brought to the forefront of our lives.  This is the acceptance that lets God know that we are at last in His fold.  We have tried everything else, and now we know that His is the best way.

Decide for Him today.

Work Musings

From Celia’s Images in a Reflecting Pool; a Journal

Colds or “bugs” are a form of seeking outside ourselves, convenient crutches we use when we are very weary from walking in the world.  One then has an excuse to sit down.  Written a couple of days before I succumbed to a succession of mild but debilitating viruses:  “What do I really want to experience in my world?  I don’t want to be hassled constantly to do more-more- more.  I need to say ‘no’ to things for a month and then some.”

On the work complexities of modern life:  “I desperately need to learn how to pace myself.  If ever I get ahead at work, I immediately ‘fill my plate’ with a dozen things that are sure to swamp me eventually.” Four days later, the dawn of a solution:  

“I sensed today that I make things too hard.  I have too much a sense of responsibility.  I should let go and let God.  Life lived from moment to moment ‘listening’ (to the Holy Spirit) is much more interesting.  I can be much too work-oriented, so much that I become a drudge.”  

TINY MAD IDEA

Note: Published in Miracles magazine, September – October, 2022 (Jon Mundy, publisher; Glenn Hovemann, editor)

“Into eternity, where all is one, there crept a tiny, mad idea at which the Son of God remembered not to laugh.”  (A Course in Miracles, COA ed., T-27.X.6:1)

“To access true knowledge of yourself and thus end all madness, you must go to knowledge in the right way, which is through love.”  (Choose Only Love, “Wisdom,” bk 4, 5.II)

We can’t remember any of this, but when we failed to laugh at the idea that we might attack God, making an illusion we would like better than the reality He provided, separating from our brothers and sisters, we chose madness.  And in madness is how we will stay until we discover truly how to love.  Love rights everything.  Unfortunately, we have become so accustomed to hearing that love is the Answer, that we don’t fully comprehend the import.

Perhaps if we try to discover how to love, we will make some progress.  We first forgive our brothers and sisters for what they have not done to us.  We have been living in a dream, because that is the only way that we could experience the madness that we chose.  We must drop judgment of our brothers and sisters, and we do this by recognizing the illusion.  A Course in Miracles says that fear is judgment. (T-29.X.9:3) Fear is the opposite of love, and when we drop the judgment that fuels fear, we are left with love.  Then, in love, we are safe in God’s arms once again.

We all want true knowledge of who we are.  And this true knowledge of self and others arises when we love, ourselves and others.  A tiny amount of love can be “milked” for all that it is worth.  And when we do so, we are enhancing that which is our heritage, and that heritage is love.  God’s Love.

When the fear dissipates, we are no longer afraid of what others will do to us. Because now we don’t fear or judge our brothers and sisters, we are free to love them—possibly for the first time.  

When overwhelmed with love, thank God for this blessing.

Planning Our Lives

From Celia’s Images in a Reflecting Pool; a Journal.

I think we plan our lives before we are born.  If so, given that I have always spent much time in thinking about what I should do next, I’m sure I planned carefully on the other side.  

I once had an intuition that my growing-up years went just as intended.  I wanted to emphasize working hard on academic pursuits and developing the impetus to achieve.  Now when I question the advisability of all that, surely some balancing act is taking place.

All of us enter life with a script that is filled with challenges and hurdles meant to build Character in the highest sense possible.  But, as Wordsworth says, we forget about this intention (“. . .Shades of the prison-house begin to close/ Upon the growing Boy, . . . .”  Consequently, we attend alumni reunions with a bright smile, making conversation that lies about a successful life with rarely a cloud in the sky.  Instead, we should drop our masks and admit that life has been tough.  After all, we planned it that way—each and every one of us.

Holy Instant

“The holy instant is the result of your determination to be holy.  It is the answer.  The desire and the willingness to let it come precede its coming.  You prepare your mind for it only to the extent of recognizing that you want it above all else.  It is not necessary that you do more; indeed, it is necessary that you realize that you cannot do more.  Do not attempt to give the Holy Spirit what He does not ask, or you will add the ego to Him and confuse the two.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-18.IV.1)

Jesus here gives instructions for inviting a holy instant.  We don’t “prepare,” which would merely be a case of our ego trying to make us think, momentarily, that we are purer than before we started to prepare!  We just need a little willingness to experience the holy instant, a sense that we really do want this great blessing above all other blessings (at least at a given point in time).  The holy instant will come when invited in just this way.  It is a blessing that the Holy Spirit doesn’t ask us to prepare, because we surely would botch the job if we tried!  (This is what the ego is attempting to get us to do.)

We need determination only, an intense desire and will that is our part in the whole process.  And that is all.

The Holy Spirit will do the rest.

Destiny

“There was a chance this time would never come.  This is what I am saying.  You have a destiny to live.  To do what you are here to do is to be who you are here to be.

“Can you imagine what the world could be if each one lived as who they are here to be?

“If being and doing were one?” Memoria

Note: This is a first post from Mari Perron’s new reception from Mary, something Mari is publishing under the title, Memoria.

We hear much about “being who we are,” and “being” rather than “doing.” A Course of Love discusses this the first time. Recent other channelings do as well.

Here Mary is saying that being and doing are one. If we live from who we are, we will operate from a single place, and this place is a place of being AND doing.

We do all have destinies to fulfill. And if we reflect on what that destiny truly is, we will know how to proceed. When we pray, and a quietness and peace come over us, we are hearing God in a way we can understand.

Otherwise, it is as if we were driving a car at night without any lights.

Turn to God to get your automobile lights on.

Holy Instant

“You who are now the bringer of salvation have the function of bringing light to darkness.  The darkness in you has been brought to light.  Carry it back to darkness, from the holy instant to which you brought it.  We are made whole in our desire to make whole.  Let not time worry you, for all the fear that you and your brother experience is really past.  Time has been readjusted to help us do, together, what your separate pasts would hinder.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-18.III.7)

We are said to be bringers of salvation now, and we have barely begun reading the Text of A Course in Miracles.  This must give us hope; Jesus has a lot of confidence in us.

The holy instants which we have now will transform us; it is the light that has risen in us, the vision that we now know.  A holy instant is a particular moment in time, a moment in which we feel ineffable peace and pure joy, a moment for which we are encouraged not to prepare.  The holy instant is the Holy Spirit’s gift to us.  And the holy instant is a gift that we and our brother share.  In this, we become One again.  The transformation of our special relationship into a holy one has begun.

There is an interesting take on time in this quotation that bears some reflection.  Jesus can adjust time!  He says so!  We who are strict realists in regard to physical reality will find this assertion hard to accept.  The adjustment is not something that can be measured by physical machines, such as clocks.  But have we not ourselves observed many times that time sometimes seems to stand still, sometimes seems to speed ahead?  If Jesus is here talking about an actual physical occurrence, the clocks (the measuring devices) would themselves have been altered as well.  In the final analysis, we don’t know if Jesus refers to physical reality in this quotation, or to simply our perception of physical reality.  We know that our perception of the passing of time is subject to variation, and we have known this long before we started reading A Course in Miracles.

It is enough to know that time will be adjusted to allow us to experience the holy instant, which is a miracle.  Elsewhere Jesus also says that time is adjusted for us to perform miracles. 

The actual facts here are less relevant than the ethereal nature of the holy instant.  We are being taken out of ourselves to an experience of pure love, and we will return to ourselves with more of our consciousness transformed.  We are making progress.

The Comforter Speaks to Us

“I highly recommend that you establish a relationship with the Comforter as though it were a relationship with a good friend—indeed, the best of friends—until you reach a point in which virtually every decision is given to that Mind:  Well, old buddy, should I turn left or right?”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Chapter 21, Page 256.)

Jesus here refers to the Holy Spirit in quite familiar terms–as a “buddy.” This colloquial expression lightens our experience of the sacred, making us unafraid of a “Voice” that might speak to us.

It is unlikely that the Voice will be audible, unlikely because we might become afraid. When we look deep within, we know that we have found the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit. And His words to us come back to us as our own mind speaking.

The Holy Spirit does not frighten us. If we turn aside from the good advice we “hear,” the Voice will lessen. And if we “hear” anything that would harm another, we need to turn aside, lest our own fears make for a situation that is not good.

It is our voice that speaks to us, but if we are staying close to God, we are partaking of His Spirit, and our way will smooth out, assuring us that His offer of help is a free offer. He wants us to know that He loves us, and one of the ways that He shows that is to offer guidance.

We can and will “hear” the Holy Spirit speaking when we open up our hearts to God’s Love. We are here experiencing the “happy dreams the Holy Spirit brings” (from A Course in Miracles).

The Holy Spirit Guides

“Truth has rushed to meet you since you called upon it.  If you knew Who walks beside you on the way that you have chosen, fear would be impossible.  You do not know because the journey into darkness has been long and cruel, and you have gone deep into it.  A little flicker of your eyelids, closed so long, has not yet been sufficient to give you confidence in yourself, so long despised.”  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-18.III.3)

The “Who” is the Holy Spirit; if it had been meant to be Jesus, then in A Course in Miracles the pronoun would not have been capitalized.  And God Himself is not called upon very much at all as long as we are lost in illusion.  God is said to have turned to the Holy Spirit, God’s Voice and the Universal Inspiration, to teach us how to find our way out of darkness.

We don’t understand the Holy Spirit, but we can come to experience Him, and in the experiencing we will find all the Love that we want.  He is our Guide, our way home to God, and He gently leads us by the hand and tells us what to do to make the journey, the “journey without distance,” (said elsewhere) that we need to take.

The last sentence, with a “little flicker of. . .eyelids,” is particularly poignant.  Jesus understands that we have walked deep into insanity, and finding our way back is going to be a problem to be overcome.  He is writing A Course in Miracles to give us the means to Awaken, and the more that we study it, the more simple the whole course becomes.  (Prior to intense study, ACIM seems complicated indeed.)

We have despised ourselves.  Our primary thought has been that we are not enough—not “good” enough, not strong enough, not pure enough.  We berate ourselves that we have disappointed God.  But God sees us as His children, and He does not berate us for mistakes made in innocence.  We are innocent of anything bad; mistakes made in illusion seem to have real effects, in our all-too-tangible world, but what is done in illusion is not really done at all.  So we can rest easy.  We forgive, but forgiveness is an illusion as well, but one that does not breed other illusions.  Thus it becomes our way home.  We forgive what has never happened in reality!  How easy is that?

Purpose

“I and my Father are one.  Only Love is real, and Love, alone, heals.  My commitment is to the reality of Love.  Therefore, Father, bring each moment to me that I might learn anew to love, and allow that Love to transform a temporary illusion into that which extends the good, the holy, and the beautiful.

“Herein lies your purpose.  Herein lies your function, and herein—and only here—is Life.”  (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Chapter 18, Page 217)

What is our purpose in life?  I think it is to discover how to live, and when we get really close to God, we discover that living Love is the only way to proceed.  Everything else makes no sense at all.

God’s universes could not survive if such was not built on Love.  And if it weren’t for our sometimes dim awareness that Love is the Answer, we would long ago have destroyed ourselves. 

Sure, we make mistakes—many mistakes.  But there is a resolution when we seek forgiveness of ourselves and move forward undeterred.  God, according to A Course in Miracles, does not need to forgive us because He has never condemned.  He condemns no one.  He simply spreads Love, always and forever.

God does give us free will, and so He lets us do as we will for a long time.  He knows with foresight that eventually we will tire of our games and turn to Him.  He knows that Love will draw us to His side—eventually.  It is the one Force in this world that ultimately will not be resisted.

It is this turning to Him that saves us from agony.  And when we love, in this world, however imperfectly, we are on the right track.

Gates of Heaven

“Beloved pure soul!  You who live for God!  Whoever joins this work becomes one with us, and because of that union miracles and spiritual events of incalculable greatness and bliss will occur.  Gates of Heaven not yet opened will do so.”  Choose Only Love bk. 6, 1:II

A wonderful promise from Choose Only Love, received by Sebastian Blaksley from the celestial.  We are often given encouragement in these seven books in the series, published by Take Heart Publications and available on Amazon.

If we choose to take to heart these promises, our lives will smooth out and we will enjoy greater happiness.

Sometimes we think wanting to be happy is a selfish thing.  But no!  Actually it is the gift of God to us.  We just have to follow His message of Love.

A Course of Love: An Overview

Note: A Course of Love: An Overview is available from Amazon for $3.95 (print; ebook). It is often helpful as an introduction to A Course of Love. The following excerpt is the preface to the booklet:

PREFACE

            The year was 2004, three years after Mari Perron had published the first part of f A Course of Love (also known by its acronym, ACOL) with New World Library.  Like Mari, I was living in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota.  And, like Mari, I was a seeker.

            Some time had gone by since I had purchased and read the New World edition.  But I found myself  interested in having a conversation with Mari about A Course of Love, in part about the assertion I had read that Jesus had channeled this new work.   We met over coffee.  She was charming and articulate, but unassuming, just a “regular” person.  We were deep in conversation for over an hour.

            Mari’s daughter Mia came over to greet us.  Mari lamented that A Course of Love had not “taken off” the way that she would have liked.  Mia said something prophetic:  She said that it took a while for A Course in Miracles to take off, and that it would just take some time for A Course of Love to become known as well. 

As our conversation continued, Mari said, “I have been praying that someone would come to me to help me get the word out about A Course of Love.” 

I was stunned.  Mari thought that I was an answer to her prayer.

I thought she had the wrong person.  I was A Course in Miracles enthusiast, and I thought that she needed a younger generation to come along and help her. 

Now, twelve years later and seven years into writing a blog on both A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, I think Mari might have been right all along.  Right about a mission for me, right about Jesus as the one who channeled to her.    

Now many others are drawn to ACOL, due largely to Glenn Hovemann’s Take Heart Publications and the new combined volume.  Yes, Jesus’s professed “continuation” of A Course in Miracles has an ever-widening and increasingly enthusiastic audience.

To my mind Jesus had “unfinished business” with us after A Course in MiraclesA Course of Love answers many of the questions that we have had after reading A Course in Miracles.  Now Jesus not only takes us by the hand and leads us beyond the ego, but he tells us how to establish a new identity—in this body but beyond this body, the “elevated Self of form.”

We are on the threshold of a newly created world.  The Voice that Mari heard as “thoughts she did not ‘think,” (D:12.11)  now made available to us in A Course of Love, counsels us to transform ourselves and our world.

                                                            —

             This journey for me of writing this small book about A Course of Love would not have been possible without the assistance of Mari Perron, ACOL scribe, and Glenn Hovemann, ACOL publisher.  I thank Mari for her prayers and insight, and Glenn was his ever-supportive demeanor and editorial direction, as well as substantial contributions to the chapter, “Frequently Asked Questions / FAQ.”  And, finally, my heartfelt thanks to my husband Paul for everything.  He expressed his interest early in this project by telling me that he wanted to read what I was writing.  And he has.

–Celia Hales

Union

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

Water into wine

into sacramental pure libation

shared by all attending

festive culmination of betrothal

of the bridegroom and the bride.

Preparations planned to posture

in appointed places

all the actors

of the passion play

the passage rite

the mystery of miracle

leaving home and kindred folk

to enter tiny canopy and there

repeat the ancient vows

and pledge to honor

new relationship of head and heart.

Would that all so young

might don the wedding white

baptismal robes and leave

the washing waters of remorse

and feel such cleansing

as pre-nuptials require

to fully celebrate the union

of my mind and soul.

Heart

Note: Today’s posting is an excerpt, with prompting quotation added, to my book, Being Who You Are: Pondering A Course of Love, 265 pages. The book is available on Amazon for $7.95 (print) and $5.99 (ebook). Five out of five stars for all reviews.

“While your mind did not accept the truth of your identity or the reality of love without fear, it existed in a reality of fear and judgment, and bound heart and body to this reality.  Your heart has now heard the appeal of this Course and worked with your mind to bring about this acceptance of the truth, a truth your heart has always known but has been unable to free you to accept without the mind’s cooperation.”  (A Course of Love, T4:7.5)

This quotation explains the concept of wholeheartedness, that we need to join mind to heart, not letting either take the ascendancy alone.  In wholeheartedness, we give up fear, not with a whimper, but with a joyful shout.  We are free at last!  Fear and judgment go together, and both are anathema to reaching Christ-consciousness.  Our heart has always known truths that our mind rejected because of our intellectualism.  Basically, we didn’t want to be superstitious.  We feared that believing in God was intellectually suspect.

Our heart doesn’t have such misgivings.  Our heart knows that there is a Something—or Someone—More.  And when we listen to our hearts, we are happier.  Would you not take happiness, any day, over intellectual skepticism that locks us in despair?

New Path

“After having blessed everything lived, known, taught, and experienced, we let it go forever and begin a new path, a path without past, without plans, without pre-conceived ideas.  We are carried by the Grace of God.”  Choose Only Love bk. 6, 1:I

Choose Only Love is taking us in new directions.  We bless our past, but we don’t cling to it.  God blesses our past, but He too does not hold us to it.

We are walking a new way now, a way in which we are “carried by the Grace of God.”  This new beginning has assurances that were not ours previously.  Our knowledge—not our perceptions—will carry us forth from now on.

We don’t know how this new path will unfold—and wonder of wonders, we don’t have to know.  God’s Grace is always sufficient.  If we think we need to know specifics, we need only ask, and we will be told, but specifics unfolding in their own time and place.

Take heart, be reassured that God and angels walk with us.  We cannot lose our way unless we want to do so.  And who would want, once again, to lose our way?  We found that our way would not work.  Now, as bidden by all revealed writings, we choose God’s way.

If we stand firm in this determination, there is nothing that we wish to do that we cannot do—if the wish is certain and clear in our innermost being, for we are listening to the Guide Whom God is, our sure way.

Love / Safety / Trust

“Where you learned to hate, you will learn to love.  Where you learned to fear, you will learn safety.  Where you learned to distrust, you will learn trust.  And each learning experience will be a learning experience because it will touch your heart.”  (A Course of Love, C:24.1)

We are thinking about the heart in A Course of Love.  Of course, technically we are thinking about “wholeheartedness,” which is the union of mind and heart.  But we focus on the heart because we have so long neglected that vital center of our Self.  When we were caught by the ego, we listened to what our deluded and insane mind said.  And when we sought to relinquish the ego, we were changing our minds.  But there is a step beyond that A Course of Love seeks to have us reach.  And this step is reached without words that the mind could understand, or rational understanding that is totally beyond the ego.  This is the realm of the heart, where words fail us and we are at home in God.  We “know” things without having to be told.  We “understand” things without a rational explanation.  Life just “is,” and we are finally and ultimately happy in the “isness” that will lead us to Christ-consciousness.  We don’t ask anymore because we have no need.  We know.  And this knowledge saves us.

Exile

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:                        

Sent into exile, called out of exile

Who sends?

Who calls?

Once upon a pilgrim journey

seeking what had been abandoned

but what memory labeled lost

and held remorse at having let it loose

and turned that sorrow into stern resentment

at victim-state inexorable

and pondered who the persecutor be

and weighed the balance of another’s misery

with hope to win the crown of thorns for prize.

Through exile comes the Kingdom

in golden robes of seamlessness

once blame is cast aside

and hope can see the beauty of the wayside

and yearn for life

as those beneath the water yearn for air.

Hands

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

Casting out demons

offering cold water

embracing into life

 Let hands be used.

Hands are used

almost reflexively

as if they

led by force unknown to human brain

guided by some unseen master Hand

whose plan surprises

as we see ourselves

gently stroke a poor child’s head

rise to voice a cause conflicted

write a letter to support or warn

fashion baby quilts and garden plots

touch the dying in their final hour.

Perhaps our greatest strength reveals itself

in hands’ activity

behooving us

to study ours

to see what power

we have and use.        

Considering the Godhead in Masculine/Feminine Terms

“A Special Note about Gender:  God has no gender.  The masculine/feminine duality of personality is a human attribute.  And yet, God is both masculine and feminine, for God is All.  As All, God is both as personal as you and as impersonal as ‘It’ or ‘Principle.’  Human beings can relate more intimately to a personal God than an impersonal one, and so ion his lifetime Jesus created the idea of ‘God the Father,’ which casts God as a loving presence, and humans as part of a Divine Family.  During Jesus’ time, the culture could only accept a masculine figure; and ever since much of the world has related to God as masculine in both imagery and in language.  I grew up in a Catholic society in which God was universally referred to as ‘He.’  That tradition is reflected in the first three books of Choose Only Love.

“In Book IV, however, God more fully revealed Herself:  ‘Until now, God Himself, in His infinite knowledge, wanted to show Himself in the world as Father, as well as the love that He is.  But from now on She wants to show Herself as Mother, not only as wisdom.  The ‘feminine’ of God will come to light more and more every day.’  Thus the reader will notice that the language of the final four books in this series reflects both the masculine and feminine natures of God.”  – from Sebastian Blaksley, receiver of Choose Only Love.  Passage is from Choose Only Love, Bk. 7, introductory material.

The explanation about gender, you will note, quoted above, comes from Sebastian and is here quoted from Book 7.

Traditionally, Christianity has used the masculine gender, as did Jesus 2,000 years ago.  Now we are encouraged to think of God in broader terms, knowing (as I think Jesus knew, too) that God is bigger than one gender.  In the more inclusive way that God is dealing with us now, we are encouraged to try to see His/Her grandeur, that the God we worship is not to be seen in anthropomorphic terms.

We tend to see God in our own image, but that somewhat misstates the case.  We are told in the Genuis that God created us in His image—not the reverse.  So we are encouraged to try to think in “God terms,” and of course this attempt asks a lot of us.

The Mother God will be seen by us as a gentler version, for most of us carry warm feelings toward the one who birthed us and cuddled us in her arms.  The mother/child bond has been seen as the most significant of all our relationships.  And Book 7 of Choose Only Love recognizes this significance.

Ask God to show us how to think of the Godhead.  See if what Sebastian says here in his reception of Choose Only Love finds a place in our hearts. 

STRENGTH

Note: Published in Miracles magazine (Jon Mundy, publisher)

I can give you my strength until yours is as certain as mine. . . . (WOM, Part 1, Lesson 7)

You always choose between your weakness and the strength of Christ in you.  (ACIM, COA ed., T-31. IX.2:3)

I can do all things through Christ which strengthened me.  (Phil. 4:13, KJV)\

            Jesus knew stress in himself while on Earth.  The evidence is in the New Testament: indignantly overturning the moneychangers’ tables in the temple; agonizing in Gethsemane (though no one knew this because his disciples slept; perhaps Jesus told this in his appearances later on); asking God from the cross why he had been forsaken. Yes, this man was fully human—whatever else he also was.

            But he overcame, as he bids us to do.  Again, the New Testament tells us how.  From the cross, rather than thinking of himself, he thought of his mother, standing nearby.  He put her in the care of his beloved disciple, John.  He welcomed a man being crucified beside him into Paradise that very day; he knew that was where he himself was heading. 

Yes, he overcame with strength, and we are bidden to overcome also.  But we have his help.  He shares his divinity with us; he shares his Christhood.  And we are made strong thereby.

We certainly all know stress, but now we discover that we can also know strength.  In both stress and strength, we emulate Jesus.  And he is always here for us.  He promises to come upon a “single unequivocal call.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-4.V.14:10)  

            We need the strength of Christ, by which we mean not just Jesus, but us as well—all the Sons and Daughters of God.  This explanation is a mystical statement of what the term Christ really means.  Let’s put our minds and hearts to the test, to really see how we might emulate Jesus in his strength, knowing that stress can always be set aside.

We will find that our humanity can be championed—not by stress—but by the divinity—the strength—that we all share, with Jesus himself, with Christ.

Welcome the Child

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

Welcome the Child

the child in me who longs to be

            unhampered by high expectations

            placed upon her by comparative critique

            so constant that the life blood joy

            begins to pale and then succumbs

            to lethargy within the deepening dark

the child in me who wants to be

            active in one world

            and nurturing attachment

            to another

            with eucharistic daily bread

the child in me who needs to be

            rebirthed into a balanced one

            who free of censorship of self

            and habits binding  

            from a paralyzing past

            can welcome other children

            from confining prison cells.

Welcome my child

            the little me so bonded with

            the Old Embracing One

            who never for an instant

            e’en considered

            abandoning or bruising

            my small soul.

Happy Dreams

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

New Truth

New truth comes to me

and I

eager to demonstrate

this sudden energy

look for someone

who might listen

but all are busy

looking for their own

interior informings

or if they hear me

give back blank looks

and realizing I have failed

to share some substance

of my newfound joy

I wince and wonder

if I’m meant to speak at all

or rather keep inside me

all that cries out to be told.

From time again of reaching out

with words

in vain attempts

conveying little

of this deepest gift

I come at last to know

the patience of the ancients

who learned what I must learn:

the simple waiting

until time and place

and question from another

might reveal

communal readiness

to share.


Meditation from Celia:

“I said before that the first change, before dreams disappear, is that your dreams of fear are changed to happy dreams.  That is what the Holy Spirit does in the special relationship.  He does not destroy it, nor snatch it away from you.  (A Course in Miracles, FIP ed., T-18.II.6)

The two parts of this quotations are linked together by the fact of a happy dream.  The Holy Spirit acts in us to change our dreams of hostility and anger and pain to happy dreams, even though we are still asleep and don’t entirely know how this change is happening.  What is going on is that our projection from within, where the Holy Spirit resides, is changing.  We are projecting more loving thoughts, and thus the perception that we have of the outer world is that it is changing, independent of us.  This change is not independently wrought.  And as we become happier, seeing in a more loving and kind way, the dream we experience becomes even better!

At this point our special relationships will begin to look better and better, not filled as much with pain or the vicissitudes of mood.  The special relationships, at this precise point, have not yet transformed into holy, but the potential is there.  We will want them to be holy as we proceed in our study of A Course in Miracles.

The Holy Spirit does not snatch away our special relationships, though we are fearful that, being inferior, He will decide that this form has to go.  The person most likely doesn’t have to go—if the transformation into a holy relationship can be made. 

We are learning in the context of ACIM.  We are projecting more positive aspects to our outer world, and everything changes at this point.  We are drawn by the joy that we experience as these changes come about.  This joy leads us to forget the ego, and just run to the joy.

And in that running will we take the next step, the sometimes disjointed next step, of transforming our special relationships (which have always been problematic) into something better—something holy.

Draw Nigh to the Comforter

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

Seeking Wholeness    

Hungry

I find myself

for comforting

eternal words

sustaining this frail being

torn between two spheres

eager immortality

producing living words

to last beyond the grave

and worldliness accommodated

by constant cache of fiction facts

Thirsty

I am

for what would quench

and bring together both in

steady stream through daily pulsing life

Desperate

I stretch

 this empty frame

pleading for the great “I Am”

to root so resolute

transforming my attachments

and divinizing me.


Meditation from Celia:

Draw Nigh to the Comforter

“You will no longer resist the process of purification, by whatever means the Comforter uses for you.  It simply does not matter anymore:

“Why resist it?  All I want is God!

“If it is dissolved in the mind in a split second, and you do not even notice it—fine.  If it requires great tears and great experiences in the world—fine.  What is the difference?  They are really the same.  It is because you have relinquished—through allowing—ownership of your pathway home.  You have decided to let the Comforter take you home.” (“The Way of Transformation,” The Way of Mastery, Chapter 21, Page 255)

The Comforter, as we know, is the Holy Spirit.  He is always present, always giving us solace in a sometimes difficult world.  His emotional support will allow us to live through difficulties unscathed, even difficulties that are suffering and pain.

We have traveled far from our Maker.  We have made drastic mistakes that have colored our minds and perhaps even our hearts.  Drastic measures are sometimes taken by our souls to turn us back toward God and our home in heaven.  Only when we recognize, however dimly, that these drastic measures, chosen by our own souls, are sometimes necessary to bring a light into our deluded minds, only then will we know that all the suffering and pain were worth it.

God only loves.  Our souls make far more of the choices for us than we can know on this earth, in this world.  And at heart we are all One. 

Thank God that He did not abandon us in misery.  The Holy Spirit, our Comforter, will always lend a listening ear and a surcease to that which troubles us, whether immediate or down the road.  God does not abandon us.

Peace

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

God Fruit

I am

you are

he is

            all God-fruit

            from germinated holy seed

            and ripening unevenly           

            appear misshapen and discolored

            as if from bruising

            or poor pollination.

I am

you are

he is

            judged by size and shapeliness

            and sometimes even fragrance

            as would-be orchard laborers

            determine if we’re worth

            the time and trouble

            to sift and sort for sale.

Even I

and you

and he

            forget we are not

            quality controllers

            in the large warehouses of humanity

            where clock time works against us.

The message is the thing

            that seeks to penetrate the rind

            for transformation of the seed capsules

            to let burst forth the flavor of the core.


From Celia’s Images from a Reflecting Pool: a Journal:

On what “works” in work for me:  “This morning I was very sleepy and relaxed–a little numb.  As a result I slowed down at work to great benefit.  I need to stop falling all over myself to get my work done.” Yet, the very next day, I wrote, “I seem to anticipate work and have a hard time doing that.  I don’t handle a million things to do very well.” Yet, though I clearly recognized this in 1992, I still haven’t truly accepted it and planned my work accordingly. 

I have a pattern of taking on more and more, getting “swamped,” and pulling back—only to repeat the same dynamic.  I may be addicted to an adrenaline rush which my body can’t sustain over the long haul.  So I end up anxious, and my husband does therapy for me over breakfast. Not fair to him or my real Self. 

A Course in Miracles says that the first obstacle that peace must flow across is the desire to get rid of it. (T-19.IV.A.1:1) 

How true!

God’s Listening Ear

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

Breaking Bread

Am I engaged in eating

when another I might feed?

Must both the giver

and receiver dine together?

And if I

not hungry

simply want to share

is table fellowship required?

But if no food have I

not even for myself

might my meal partner

have some to share with me?

Or if we two

have no fresh bread

to break and eat together

might there be

a different kind of meal?

A breaking open of ourselves

revealing sustenance?

A spirit sharing one with one?

And wafting through the meal

aroma of the Father’s favorite food?


From Celia’s Images in a Reflecting Pool: a Journal:

“Lead, kindly Light . . .

Keep thou my feet: I do not ask to see

The distant scene; one step enough for me.”

–Arthur Hays Sulzberger

Simply put one foot in front of the other and walk.  This is the secret of getting over an enervating malaise, if it is only mildly debilitating.  Truly pathological depression is going to require something more: usually biochemicals as well as a good listening ear.  (And God has the best Listening Ear of all.)

Keeping Pace

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

Martyr

Don’t call me martyr!

I abhor the name!

Daring

to dissect what motivates

to label action

to pass judgment on behavior

pieced in hearsay quilts!

Don’t tell me who I am

for you don’t know!

You cannot read my heart

and if you could

would miss the wisdom

from the depths of pondering

and placing

self-absorbed requitement for existence first.

Don’t nominative my life with fickle flattery

that cheapens everything I hold most dear

and spreads a sense of soiledness throughout my soul.

Don’t speak to me of

what you might call sacrifice!

I shun the word as prostitution

of my own free will

and sure damnation

of God’s wealth of joy.


From Celia’s Images in a Reflecting Pool; a Journal:

Norman Vincent Peale counseled pacing in daily life (though he did not call it that).  If in God’s own time, it is not there, it was not meant to be there.  This also works to mediate against precipitous action.  I don’t know that it would work in a life-threatening situation, but in my own life and work, I know that considered action and going with the flow (not bucking the tide) is what gets the job done.

On what really counts in life:  “I’ve wondered if putting A Course in Miracles into practice in a fast-paced and demanding life is the best thing that I could do.  But I don’t think life is meant to be as fast-paced as we live it.” 

Work

From Ann Glover O’Dell’s Midwifing the Soul:

Buried Treasure

The God of terror and of joy

   has buried deep within

     the unimaginable

         to frighten and release

            in its own time.

Perhaps we once knew what it was–

  knew and were not strong enough

    to deal with that reality

      so like the single talent one

          entombed it well.

And through the years

   we grew and changed

     and as time passed

       forgot the nature

         of our buried prize.

We came to distrust

   hidden substances

     in their un-knowing

       and then to fear

         and then to hate.

We bought large locks

    for dungeon doors

      determined now

        to keep enchained

          the secret there.

But it too grew

   and finally outgrew

    the closet chamber deeps.

The concentration pressed against 

   the world of consciousness

     and would not be contained.

 I press with all my might

   but cannot keep

      the stone from bursting forth

          revealing the white raiment

            of my twice-born soul.


From Celia’s Images in a Reflecting Pool: a Journal:

I remember in college hearing a professor mention that some character in literature “derived his meaning in life from work.” 

I immediately saw myself in those words.  But in recent years my journal has been filled with variations on the theme, “I have to get over feeling that I want to push-push-push at work.”  The problem is that I become obsessive about work when I am truly “into” it, but my emotional make-up screams at me that I need to lighten up. 

So I do—and the oscillations of greater and lesser work play themselves out over and over.  I would be better to seek a steady pace, not making the same mistake of work overload on a recurring basis.

It is hard for me to go easy when I see deadlines staring me in the face.  Yet this is just what I must learn to do.  The fact that the problem recurs proves that there is a better way for me to freely choose—and choose it I must.