Tag Archives: 40 days and 40 nights

When Our Minds Are Still

1 – Emptiness of Mind

“Emptiness of mind will now be something that may seem to plague many of you. Where once the mind was searching, yearning, questioning, now it is likely to become still. From the stillness comes its emergence as what it is. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 25)”

2 – Seeking

This is a quotation that heralds a time of blessing. We have searched for years, always seeking. And in A Course of Love, Jesus tells us that the time of seeking is finished, over. We are OK the way that we are, because we have left behind the ego. If there are personality traits that we don’t think are good, we can turn aside from them and they will disappear. We don’t have to feel that we are unworthy. We are fine.

3 – Christ-consciousness

If our minds are still, we may wonder if we have lost something—simply because we are not seeking any longer. But this is as it should be. We have not lost anything, but we have found a very great something. We are on the verge of Christ-consciousness, the culmination of the 40 days and 40 nights with Jesus on the mountain top. We may take this journey many times with him, rereading this part of the Dialogues, but he does not intend for us to keep repeating the journey. He is trying to bring up to Christ-consciousness now. Will we assent to this? For it is God’s Will for us (and Jesus’s will a well).

4 – Meditating

If we are still, we may be meditating, almost unawares. And out of the stillness will great surprises come. We will be at home in God almost without realizing what is about. We will embody Christ-consciousness forthwith.

5 – Certainty?

What of those of us who do not have this certainty? What do we do? What do we think? What do we say?

6 – Patience

We live in patience for the mighty act of Christ-consciousness to find us. If the way seems long, the end is certain. This is a promise made to us in A Course in Miracles, when revelation would occasionally reveal the end to us, but to get there the means were needed. And these means were explained to us in ACIM. Perhaps we did not understand what replaced the ego, who we do next. And so we were stuck.

7 – Jesus

I think this dilemma is why Jesus channeled A Course of Love. So many of us keep seeking, over and over, in very many ways. But this is all so unnecessary, Jesus tells us in ACOL. Stop the seeking. Rest in my [Jesus’s] embrace.

8 – Embrace

If your mind seems empty just now, this is why. You are in Jesus’s embrace without knowing it. Now you do know. And now you can delight in what seems to be an empty mind, but which is just a still one.

9 – Perfectly Calm and Quiet

We are being perfectly calm and quiet all the time, which is what Jesus says in A Course in Miracles is the way that we will view reality when the real world comes.

10 – Thoughts

“You are not what you once were. You need not guard against an over-zealous ego-mind. Your ideas in this time may sound crazy, even to your own ears. Let them come. Your feelings may be confused in one moment, crystal clear in the next. Let them all come. Your thought will slip from the sublime to the mundane. Let them come. (A Course of Love: Dialogues, p. 194)”

Jesus tells us that at this point in our progress we may feel an emptiness of mind, that the mind may be still. This is probably a new experience for us, and we are not to resist it. This relaxed attitude is what tending the garden is all about. We ought to let our mind wander as it will, relaxed or uptight. This is a period of transition, but the stillness is the hallmark of the progress that we have made.

We are encouraged to be reflective, to sort and to cull. This metaphor continues the image of tending the garden. It is not yet time for the harvest. It is a time for gathering, a time of preparation–but not of waiting.
We are not to try to sort things out with the mind, which is far too small to understand the totality of what we are experiencing. Don’t ask, “What am I looking for?” Just relax and realize that we are tending our garden. More will come later.

11 – Stillness and Non-Resistance

“It is in the new pattern of stillness combined with non-resistance that the new will come. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 25)”

12 – Sorting and Culling

“Rather than a time of questions and answers, you might think of this time as a time of sorting and culling. Become used to letting what comes to you come to you without judgment. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 25)”

13 – Judging

Avoid judging, for in judging it is impossible to awaken. This one thing we must choose to turn aside. We must just stop our minds from judging when judging seems to be upon us. A Course in Miracles says that if we cease judging, we will awaken. Is not this what we want? Many of us do, many desperately. We need to keep the desperate thoughts away from our minds, because they will make a demanding spirit. And God does not kowtow to a demanding spirit.

14 – Personal Experience

When I was 12, I prayed desperately to “be saved.” I sneaked away to my bedroom, to the far side of the bed, sat on the floor, and read Scripture. I kept saying to God, “I want to be saved.” And nothing happened. At least nothing that I could perceive. It wasn’t until four years later, when I was 16, that the miracle happened. I sat on the floor of a very crowded room, ready to hear a minister talk about life after death. And I felt my heart strangely warmed, just as John Wesley (founder of Methodism) had felt years before. I knew that things would be different from then on. And they were.

15 – The Dynamic

I think that walking toward Christ-consciousness has the same dynamic. We seek and seek, and then we seek no more. And when the demanding spirit is quiet, God reaches down and warms our heart—opening us up to greater fellowship with Him in Christ-consciousness.

16 – Preparation

“This is a time of preparation, not a time of waiting. What you need to know now cannot be gathered except by your own hands. . . .I remind you not to attempt this as a task to which you apply the mind or the question of What am I looking for? You are looking for nothing. You are tending your garden. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 25)”

17 – Awakening

We are in preparation for a great Awakening. This is why we are caught in Jesus’s 40 days and 40 nights on the mountain top. Know that we are preparing together. Know that God’s Will is that we awaken. The world needs us. And we are preparing to be ready.

18 – Conclusion

That is really all that we need to know.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

This day seems to be a time of confusion for me. In the past, I wanted to clear away any confusion as soon as possible. Let me now be patient with the confusion, knowing that I am being prepared for better things, better ways of living.

May I tend my garden well today. Thank You, as always, for Your easy guidance.

Amen.

The Choice to End Suffering

1 – Day Two

“Acceptance of your Self is acceptance of me. Acceptance of your Self is acceptance of your inheritance. Now is the time to come into full acceptance of the human self as well as the Self of unity. It is time for the final merging of the two into one Self, the elevated Self of form. (Dialogues, Day Two)”

2 – Elevated Self of Form

This new Self, the elevated Self of form, is a concept stressed throughout A Course of Love. Jesus’s statement herein also mitigates our difficulty with his first day’s insistence that we accept him as our companion on the mountaintop (though not our teacher). If our acceptance of our full Self, the little self or personal self as well as the Christ Self, means that we have accepted Jesus’s primary role in guiding us, then we are able to by-step the controversy of needing to accept Jesus as primary to our life’s progress.

3 – Our Inheritance

Acceptance of our inheritance is a view toward seeing the personal self (the one that we know most intimately as a persona, but minus the ego as central to that persona) and the Self as the unity that it ought to be. When we merge the personal self with the Christ Self, we have achieved the elevated Self of form. This does not mean that we have experienced Christ-consciousness, only that we have removed the blocks to receiving such a blessing. Christ-consciousness is seen to arrive during our time in these 40 days and 40 nights on the mountaintop with Jesus.

4 – Journey

He does not mean that we will make this journey repeatedly. Later on, soon, he makes that point in A Course of Love, the Dialogues. He is preparing us to make the journey once with him, and then to be done with that aspect of our growth. We will never finish growing, because there are always new plateaus, but apparently Jesus had felt that students/teachers of A Course in Miracles were caught by relinquishment of the ego with nothing spelled out as the way to go after the ego was history. This, to my mind, is his reason for channeling A Course of Love at all. He wanted to share more of what follows when the ego has been relinquished. And A Course of Love does just that.

5 – Inventor

“You are like an inventor who wasted many years, much money, and endured many hardships over many projects that did not come to fruition, and now has succeeded in inventing just what was always envisioned. This is the moment of fulfillment and desire coming together, the time in which to realize ‘it was all worth it.’ (Dialogues, Day Two)”

6 – Ego

This analogy dovetails a good bit of the rationale for A Course of Love. We have tried many things, struggled much, in finally letting go of the ego. What now? Now we find out. We are on the brink of a new day. And that new day is ushered in by A Course of Love.

7 – Moment of Fulfillment

This is the moment of fulfillment. What a glorious promise! We have waited long for this, and perhaps when we are finished with our 40 days and 40 nights, we will know how great a promise Jesus has made to us. If we have struggled with our study of A Course in Miracles for a very long time, we will read Jesus’s words with relief. We don’t have to struggle any longer to know the full fruition of our many deeds, words, thoughts. We are home free.

8 – Decisions

“I could give thousands of examples here, but the point is that we are not looking for degrees of wrong-actions, or wrong-doing. You all have moments you wish you could re-enact, decisions you wish you could change. These ‘actions’ are unchangeable. This is why simple acceptance is needed. (Dialogues, Day Two)”

9 – End of the Journey

Many students/teachers of A Course in Miracles site the passage in which Jesus says that he stands at the end of the journey, ready to remedy all mistakes that we ourselves could not remedy. This implies to my mind that there is some perfection being sought. Is this true? I think that it is not the whole truth, for the very idea of being perfect is an egoic construct. Our egos will have a field day with the idea that we need to be better than we are in every respect. This will hold off the acceptance even further.

10 – Chastisement

Jesus is saying here that there needs to be an end to the chastisement that we all give ourselves for not being perfect. He says elsewhere that if we recognize any personality trait, and don’t like it, we just turn aside from it and it will disappear. If we are satisfied to keep the anger, or the guilt, then we do just recognize their presence and accept them—but we don’t try to “change” constantly into a better version of what we are now. The ego loves the concept of trying to perfect ourselves. It keeps the game going. And there is no end in sight.

11 – Accept

But we who are relinquishing the ego will recognize that Jesus’s dictum that we just “accept” is welcome news indeed. In our acceptance, we stop the resistance that keeps the negative traits in place. This resistance has also kept the ego alive. This is to my mind why acceptance is so crucial to Jesus’s words here; not to accept would retain the ego. To accept will mean that the ego withers away.

12 – End Suffering

“Here, then, is where you need to make the choice that those in my time could not make, the choice to end suffering. This is the choice I made ‘for all.’ This is a choice you make for all as well. (A Course of Love: Dialogues, p. 95)”

13 – Worthy?

This passage makes the point well that many of us who are on the mountain top (the setting of these 40 days and nights) feel that we are not worthy of this experience to which Jesus calls us. We think of the many things that we have done wrong, or that were done wrong to us, and we do not accept these things and put them in the past. Acceptance is the great call that Jesus makes to us on this day.

14 – Jesus

Jesus says that his example life was meant to bring the end of suffering, that he did not suffer, because he knew who he was. We will find this assertion hard to believe, but we need to trust that Jesus is leading us aright.

15 – Self

We are worthy, we have experienced Atonement, and we are ready to elevate the Self of form. The self and the Self are meant to be combined. We will not recognize that we are worthy of this great blessing until we reach acceptance of all that has gone before. Our mistakes have been forgiven; that is all that we really need to know. Then we will be ready to take our place as Awakened beings. In this 40 days and nights, this call is made by Jesus to all of us who are his readers of the Dialogues and who accept his word, as expressed therein.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I accept myself as I am. May I know that the Atonement that You have offered me is freely given to all, including myself. If there are things about myself that I want to change for the better, help me to make these changes in the midst of my acceptance.

Be with me today as I seek to commune with You throughout the day. That communion is really the best way to live. Staying close to You keeps my attitude straightened out, my calm undisturbed, and gives me a peace that is not of the world. May my day go well with You at the helm. May I remember to thank You for the blessings of this day, which are many, more than I might usually have. I wish to remain steady and calm, relaxed and serene. Knowing Your Presence goes with me can ensure that this demeanor will be mine until the end of the day. Thank You.

May I assist in ending suffering in this world, for others and myself. Until I have taken my place in this great endeavor, I will feel that something is missing. May nothing be missing today.

Amen.

Replacing the Ego Is a Miracle

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“While you have learned much here, you may be thinking that your ego is still very much with you, and wondering, if you have not yet replaced it, how this miracle will come about. This replacement is indeed a miracle and the very miracle you have been prepared for within this course of learning. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Nature of Unity and Its Recognition, 11.17)”

Affirmation: “I would see the miracle that replaces the ego today.”

Reflections:

1 – Recognizing Miracles

We are used to the word “miracle,” but we are not used to recognizing in our own lives when we have experienced miracles. We dismiss them as coincidences or just lucky breaks. But if we start paying attention to such incidents in our own lives, it is very, very possible that we will see an increase in the number and the depth of such experiences–and these will be miracles that we are coming to recognize as such.

2 – Read ACOL

How will we replace in the ego in ourselves? One distinct means that Jesus recommends in this passage is the reading of A Course of Love, the learning therein which will be ours. We do not intensely study ACOL, for that would be counterproductive, but we are encouraged to read it repeatedly until its words become our own. We can even, effortlessly, memorize large chunks of it, and when we need solace, the memorized passages will pop into our minds to comfort us.

3 – Cessation of Ego Mind

We are being prepared for a cessation of the ego mind. While it will not be destroyed, it will be greatly diminished, so that it will not disturb our equilibrium. We are being prepared for the miracle of Christ-consciousness. In a short while in our reading, we will go to the mountaintop with Jesus (from the Dialogues of A Course of Love), and there for 40 days and 40 nights, we will finally learn how to ascend. (The 40 days and 40 nights have previously been considered; see the About page at the top of this blog.)

4 – Get Out of the Mire

May the miracle come sooner rather than later. Jesus needs us to learn, in his way, soon. This world needs us, and we will not fulfill our potential as long as we are mired in the ego-mind.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would get out of the mire today, the mire of the ego mind. I have taken steps in that direction, but always I have taken a backward step after a forward one or two. Has there been progress? Only You can say. I hope that there has been progress, and in my better moments I think that there has been.

The world does need us, but not as proselytizers for whom our brothers and sisters are not ready. I need to touch the lives of individuals who are ready for the message of ACOL. I need to touch the lives of individuals who are ready for the message of A Course in Miracles. I cannot make the determination of who is ready, but You can. Guide my words today.

Thank You.

Amen