Tag Archives: ACIM Blog

Resting in the Serenity of Wholehearted Love

“I thank you for your strong desire to be saviors of the world and to end her suffering. I thank you for your compassion and for your desire to be of service to the world. But I call to you from peace and ask for you to remain in peace with me and let not the suffering of the world call you from it. When these things of the world threaten to call you from your peace, you must remind yourself that it is only from within the Peace of God that your wholeheartedness and our unity is accomplished.” (ACOL, T3:20.14)

This quotation summarizes much that I have been alluding to in recent posts. This is the drift of this part of A Course of Love. We must stay in the serenity of wholehearted love. If we don’t, we risk falling into the blaming of God for things that go wrong, and this is wrongheaded thinking. Our unity as One—all of us—in relationship one to the other, explains the new world, the new true reality. We are meant to live in union with our Christ-Self, and in union with our brothers and sisters. We must share in order to receive, and giving and receiving in this unity is the same. We have differences, but underlying our diversity, our incredible diversity, is a sameness that we all embody as children of God. And it is in this unity that we find our heaven on earth.

The world is incredibly diverse, and so God must love diversity. We are told in both A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love that we are creators, that we made the world that we see. This is a tremendous leap for us to consider. Certainly with our limited minds now, we know that we didn’t do anything like this. But the God within did, and we are a part of Him. He dwells within, and in this merging of the human and the divine, much more is seen to be possible than previously. Largely our reluctance to adopt our gifts has been because we projected God outside ourselves, a God in some heaven far away from earth. We know now that this just isn’t true. God lives through us; he is living life through us. His way thus becomes an unseparated union with human beings who all have a spark of the divine within.

Don’t focus on suffering to make it more than what it is. Be careful not to lapse into self-pity, if the suffering is our own. Be careful to let pain just be pain. In this world we are not without limitations, and pain may be our limitation. See what it has to say to us.

Prayer

It is revealing to me to realize how much needed sleep can work to relieve pain. When I relax, emotional turmoil just ceases to exist, and often emotional turmoil is the most debilitating aspect of pain and suffering. Sleep knits up care, as Shakespeare said so eloquently. I thank You for the nap today that gave me the peace of mind and heart that I needed and wanted. There are no needs, for need is answered at the point of its inception. Thank You for this truth from A Course of Love.

Be with me to develop my mind and heart in preparation for a good day. Thank You for the little things that give me solace, the solace of exercise, tasty food, soul-healing sleep. I seek not to escape from life, but to use the simple elements of a good life to give me the peace that You always wish me to have.

Thank You for the good things of today and yesterday. I ask for those good things to continue tomorrow also.

Amen.

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Kept Safe & Secure by Miracles

“Miracles are not the end, but merely the means, of living by the truth. Miracles are not meant to be called upon to create specific outcomes in specific circumstances. They are meant to be lived by as the truth is meant to be lived by. Not because you desire an outcome, but because it is who you are and because you realize you can no longer be, live, or think as other than who you are in truth. This is how thorough your learning must be. It is a learning that must not change to fit the circumstances of illusion but be unchanging to fit the circumstances of the truth.” (ACOL, T3:20.11)

In this interpretation, miracles are a way of life. As we move through a day, we see evidence of miracles everywhere we look. This is the idea that everything is a miracle, or nothing is a miracle. I choose to believe that everything is a miracle, and in that I think that I second Jesus’s interpretation as laid out in A Course of Love. So we don’t ask for a miracle of healing; we ask that the day go forward as it is meant to go forward, with our acceptance of whatever transpires. We may speak out against an injustice, we may feel compassion for a pain—but we don’t look for supernatural means to speak to these issues. The supernatural is actually the natural in our House of Truth, God’s Kingdom. But we are “willing to have it so,” in daily life. This gives us the equanimity to accept whatever comes. We stop fighting life and what it brings.

Miracle-minded living is actually the new art of thought, an art taught quite thoroughly in the first treatise of A Course of Love. We seek to be miracle-ready, to keep ourselves in miracle-readiness, and in so doing we are, in turn, kept safe and secure by miracles. Our thinking has been informed by our heart, and so our days have a smoothness that they never had when we were trapped in illusion. Life gets better. And our gratitude helps to make it so, helps the various events and situations of our lives to turn over a new leaf, a new experience that will allow us to live better than ever before.

We learn now by observation of life in this world. We don’t pull out dusty old tomes of rarified knowledge from the past. We leave the past in the past. The guidance that emerges from our depths, the guidance that comes from our Christ-Self, is all that we need to live a rarified existence.

And we thank God that this is so.

Prayer

Thank You for the assurance that I am safe, kept in the security of Your embrace. Jesus also embraces me and all readers of A Course of Love, as well as non-readers. The love is palpable. It is this love that will free all of us of lingering fears that life might turn against us. It is this love to which I turn today.

May the dawning of each new day take me farther away from the fear of the unknown, with its egoic components, and move into the love that is meant to be my inheritance.

Thank You.

Amen.

Love Is the Answer to Pain & Suffering

“You will see it as quite difficult at first to respond to such situations in a new way, but all situations within the house of illusion call for the same response, the response of love to love. Why think you it is loving to believe in suffering? Do you not begin to see that in so doing you but reinforce it? What you might even call the “fact” of it? Can you not instead ask yourself what harm could be done by offering a new kind of observance?” (ACOL, T3:20.8)

If we don’t focus on suffering, it lessens—and this is true for our own suffering as well as the suffering of others. What we emphasize does grow in breadth and depth. What we focus on, expands. While we don’t want to close our eyes to the suffering of others, we are encouraged to believe that we will look on pain differently as time passes and our Christ-consciousness is in place. We will see with new eyes. We won’t commiserate in quite the same way, a way that heretofore has only reinforced suffering. What we will feel, as these blog posts recently have emphasized, is a compassion for those who seem to suffering. The suffering is not real, but it is real for those so involved. Illusion is very real to those caught in the house of illusion.

Our way is to provide an alternative from the House of Truth, or God’s Kingdom. We are not to try to reenter illusion in an attempt to save those caught within. Those there have their saviors. Our way is to provide the difference by living differently ourselves. If we don’t ever let our pain escalate into suffering, we will provide a very real example of a new way of being, a new truth. We will love with all the will that we are capable of mustering, but we won’t reinforce illusions by seeming to believe in it.

Suffering and pain are evidence of illusion. Heaven on earth, true reality, doesn’t contain these negatives. This does not mean that we cannot see suffering and pain from true reality. We often don’t see, though, and that in itself is a blessing. When we have moved beyond, we have moved beyond. And our vision sees a glorious new world that is pain-free. We will never know the “why” of suffering while still on this plane, in this world. But we can learn to view life differently, and in the new viewing, pain and suffering are eclipsed by the love that the Christ-Self has for all human beings. Love truly is the answer.

Prayer

May I live differently today, leaving aside, through my vision, any evidence of pain or suffering. There is a way in which these lamentables disappear. And I would like to find it, and find it today.

Your way suggests that if I focus on love, a new way of being will emerge, and I will leave pain and suffering in the dust behind me. Help me to do just this today.

Thank You for the glorious day that I see when I look outside. Nature seems to speak from You, and that is abundant comfort indeed.

Amen.

Contribute from a Full Heart

“Again, do not let your thoughts stray to benefiting and affecting others. In unity, all others are one with you and thus what you strive for in effectiveness is your own learning. Now, rather than learning the truth, you are learning how to live by the truth. This will benefit you and in so doing benefit all others.” (ACOL, T3:20.3)

We first give to ourselves. And then we reach out to all others, not by proselytizing, but by living the truth that we have come to know. One truth has been laid out in A Course of Love. And it is enough. We don’t need to “know” more; we simply live by what we have come to know, and in that we are abundantly satisfied.

If we focus too much on a contribution to others, we will lose our way. What is within is projected outward, and a focus on the outward means that limited attention is given to the inward. We must first be saved, in other words, before we can save others. The social gospel works only in limited ways. The way of redemption teaches others to live by their own lights, the guidance from deep within the psyche, and it does not press our thoughts and ideas upon a disbelieving world. We will make contributions, but first we must know that we have truly learned how to do so. If we proceed to make contributions from a separated state of mind and heart, we will make abundant mistakes in our charity work. And this we don’t want to do.

In living by the truth, we do first benefit ourselves, and then this better state of mind and heart inevitably reaches out to others. They benefit in ways that we could not predict, ways that we could not imagine. The way back home is not hard, but it does take patience. We can’t put a timetable on the bestowal of Christ-consciousness. And getting downhearted about its lack doesn’t help anybody, most especially ourselves.

Seek first to live well, even though Christ-consciousness may be coming only sparingly. There will be moments of truth, for Jesus promises this in ACOL. Don’t, above all, seek to become an ideal self, for an ideal self is an idol, and idols have been forbidden in all religions. We learned this as children in Sunday school. But previously we didn’t see the ideal self as an idol. Now we know better.

We just accept ourselves as we are. If we have flaws, we can pray for their removal, and realize in our depths that that miracle will happen. Miracles happen all the time to those who keep their eyes open, those whose eyesight is focused with true vision.

Prayer

My heart is full today, the way that I would wish it to be each and every day. I am grateful for a beautiful world, sunshine, green grass—nature in all its glory. Balmy weather completes the picture. Thank You. It is easy to feel loving when the day is so grand.

Help me to develop internally before I try to reach outwardly to my brothers and sisters. I want to help, not hinder, their way. And only when I am together, inside, am I ready to make a good contribution. Thank You for guiding me in this and in all ways.

Amen.

Ordinary People Living Extraordinary Lives

“While this would seem to leave some without hope, it will leave no one without choice. It will make the one clear and only choice evident. It is a choice to live in truth or in illusion. There are many ways that can still be found to come to the truth. But a way of getting to the truth will become so attractive that few will be able to resist. What will make this choice so attractive will not be martyrs and saintly souls stricken with every calamity and yet remaining to tell those who would listen about the glory of God. What will make this choice so attractive are ordinary people living extraor¬dinary, and miraculous, and observable lives.” (ACOL, T3:19.16)

The final sentence of this quotation is much beloved by readers of A Course of Love. It is also easily memorized and used as a mantra. “Ordinary” people living “extraordinary” lives. And that means us! Just us, ordinary people with the promise of a better tomorrow. Ordinary people who will follow guidance to create a new (and better) world. Ordinary people, living day to day with the inheritance from God our Father of an inner Christ-Self Who will make all things wonderful. This is how outstanding this promise is. This is what awaits us, as soon as we go beyond glimpses of Christ-consciousness, beyond maintenance of Christ-consciousness, to sustainability of Christ-consciousness. God makes the decision of when this is to happen to us (said in A Course in Miracles also), but we can do much to remove the blocks to the awareness of love. And then simply be accepting of who we are. Being who we are, accepting ourselves rather than an “ideal” self, is what is required for this blessing to descend upon us (though nobody awake in the world knows exactly how this miracle happened).

We are drawn by joy—to the truth of who we are. This call to joy, as ACIM calls it, is so attracting that the ego just dissolves in its wake. The call to joy is a call to be God’s children again, and not just in name only, but in service to ourselves, God, and our brothers and sisters in this world.

Make the choice today to be happy, regardless of whether we are one of those who have been visited with “every calamity” (as said in the quotation). Suffering is a choice, made by us, so that we might have a reason to push God aside. Pain is a choice also, but a choice that we don’t always have a way to avoid. We live in a material world that has germs, diseases, growing older, pesticides that damage our health, etc. We do create our own reality, but we simply don’t have the answer to the why of pain. We choose to be compassionate, to ourselves and others, rather than blame anybody. This is the way that Jesus points out in A Course of Love. And this is the way we ought to follow.

Determine today to live an extraordinary life. Just as we are. As Christ-Self personified, showing the world a personal self that has been redeemed from egoic preoccupations and egoic fears.

Prayer

I fall in line with the great promise that You made for today. I know that this will be a great day if I keep this mantra in place. Be with me to ensure that all will go well. Help me to open myself to Your blessings.

Thank You.

Amen.

Compassion for the Sick

“These lessons could not be taught while blame remained within your thought system. No victim is to blame for the violence done to them. No sick person is to blame for the illness within them. But you must be able to look at and see reality for what it is. Just as we are telling you that new beliefs and ideas will lead to a new reality, old beliefs and ideas led to the old reality, a reality that will still exist for some even after it changes completely for you.” (ACOL, T3.19.12)

This is the well-known section of A Course of Love that tells us not to blame the victim. Victims of suffering and pain deserve our compassion and our love, not our condemnation. Sincere followers of New Age thought have misunderstood this dictum, because they have believed that, because we create our own reality, we have brought emotional and physical problems on ourselves. This is why we have been prone, even within our own minds, to blame ourselves when we get sick, and to blame others when they do.

There is much here that is too deep to comprehend with our limited understanding. But it takes very little understanding to know that compassion is called for, and that blaming does no good. When confronted with pain and suffering, we only need to find a way out—for us or for other people. And there are hints in ACOL that suffering and pain will lessen, even to disappear, when we have walked farther along the pathway home to God.

Let us be accepting of our pain, but not of our suffering—for suffering is and will always remain a choice. Pain does not have to escalate into a “poor me” stance.

And pain will never escalate into a “poor me” when we realize that God is for health all the way. We just need to get out of our way to allow health to return. The pain may be teaching us something, and when we have learned that lesson, the path may very well leave of its own accord.

These reflections do not in any way diminish the real problems of real people. There is much that we do not know, but avoiding turning pain into suffering IS within our power, and we would do well to try to heed that.

Prayer

I long for good health all the time. I don’t want the mildest headache. Of course, when I think this, I am thinking along with people everywhere. And many of those people have something that causes them pain. May Your goodness reach each of us in our Self so that we don’t create illness as a learning tool. I think that many of us are not at that point yet—but, with your help, we will become that.

I would learn through painless and benign ways, lessons that come my way through good times rather than bad. May I have compassion for those with a Self Who feels differently. After all, they may get to You before I do. The Self makes this decision of how to learn. I would hope for the Self that we all are would choose a happy way of learning.

Amen.

Much More Lighthearted and Carefree Frame of Mind

“There is no longer any time to waste on such illusions. The thought system of the truth sees no value in suffering and so sees it not in truth. The thought system of the truth is a thought system that is not split by varying goals and desires. It is a thought system of unity. It is a thought system of one thought, one goal. That goal is the original thought that began the expe¬rience in physical form, the thought of expressing the Self in observable form.” (ACOL, T3:19.9)

By not “seeing” suffering, we are entering into a new era. It doesn’t mean that it isn’t there, in illusion, but we are bent on seeing reality, the real world. And as we progress, we will see far less suffering, and far more need just to express love, to extend love to our brothers and sisters.

We, somewhere early on, decided that we wanted physical form. It became a new choice, a choice in line with God’s Kingdom, and it did not have to involve a presumed separation from Him. In our case on earth, our new choice did become a detour into fear, and the ego, and then fear of God, for we were seeing him in the image of our fearful selves. Now we come home to the Christ-Self deep within, a Self not of insanity, but of truth. A Self Who knows no madness. And a Self Who is part of the God within.

We have been expressing the self in physical form, but we have not been expressing our real Self. This real Self has only recently been known by us as we catch glimpses of Christ-consciousness. When we drop the seriousness that is of the ego, and therefore fearful, we will be in a much more lighthearted and carefree frame of mind. This gentle way will lead to expressing the Self is better ways than was previously possible for us when we were expressing a fearful personal self who knew not of the Christ-Self.

Ask the Christ-Self to come out to play today. Ask the Christ-Self to embody you, telling your personal self, as presented to others, what to do and say, and even what to think.

The Christ-Self will not delude. Our way will be both brighter and happier. Our way will be what God, in His creative wisdom, first intended for us.

Prayer

Too much seriousness of mind is a form of madness, the egoic madness that I once knew. That is over for me, I hope. I pray that I will not form a new ego, lost in insanity and lost to You.

Help me to enjoy a gentle approach of life and living. Help me to let go of any seriousness of mind that is not warranted by the circumstances. Let me be lighthearted as I walk through this day. Help me to know that You are looking out for me, and that this assurance will give me peace of mind rather than a seriousness of purpose. Seriousness of purpose can undermine the purpose. I would approach my life with the realization that You are always in me, living Your life through me.

Amen.