Tag Archives: course in miracles

You Are Doing This unto Yourself

renoir - moulingallette
“The suffering that has been chosen has been mighty. The choice now is not a choice to explore the why behind it or to look for remedies for the past. The choice now is whether you want suffering to continue or want to abolish it for all time. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 14.11)”

Affirmation: “I would choose to abolish suffering today and every day.”

Reflections:

1 – Eckhart Tolle

I have often quoted Eckhart Tolle in this blog, to the effect that pain does not have to turn into suffering. (Eckhart wrote The Power of Now and A New Earth, and he is an international spiritual teacher not limited to any particular religious tradition.) Now we are bade by Jesus to leave suffering behind forever. Jesus says that we can do this. It is a choice.

2 – Choice

How might we make that choice? It is easy. Just make the decision that you will recognize that you are doing this unto yourself (from A Course in Miracles). And choose not to do it any longer (a recommendation from Dr. Phil). We have this much choice. We can stop suffering in its tracks by recognizing that we can exert our power to overcome it. We can and will still experience pain in this physical and emotional body on earth, but, as Eckhart says, we don’t have to turn that pain into suffering.

3 – Blame and Bitterness

The two principal reasons that we hold onto suffering are blame and bitterness borne of guilt (from A Course of Love). We may think that we do not deserve a happy life, for we have done so many things wrong.

4 – God Has Never Condemned Us

This is false reasoning. God has never condemned us, and therefore He has no reason to forgive (from ACIM). But we ourselves must forgive ourselves, and this we can do. We would wish others to forgive themselves; would we withhold this blessing from ourselves?

5 – Madness and Forgiveness

I think not, when we reason it out. There is much madness still in us, though the madness is diminishing. We can make others as well as ourselves happier when we have forgiven. And forgiveness is the principal message of ACIM. That we have moved beyond forgiveness is perhaps not true. We will ebb and flow as we move toward Christ-consciousness.

6 – Guilt

So let us choose today to give up our guilt, and with it our blame and bitterness. With this choice, we make the decision to give up suffering, even though pain may still be present. And when we turn to happy dreams, we will even find that often we are free of the pain.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

When the day goes badly, I must realize that I am doing this unto myself. I will get clues when I need to slow down and be careful, if I am open to listening to an inner Voice. May I be so open today.

Let us choose to have good days. Let us be patient with ourselves when we falter. And may the times of faltering lessen.

Amen.

How Little Consequence Fears Had in Truth

paintings-by-pierre-auguste-renoir-young girls at piano“You will also clearly see all of the choices that throughout your life were caused by fear and how little consequence they had in truth. These fearful choices took nothing from you or from others. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 14.9)”

Affirmation: “The fears of the past had no consequence.”

Reflections:

1 – Fears of the Past

The passage for today is a startling statement. Is it really true, as Jesus says? Have the fears of the past really made no difference?

2 – Love

Just prior to this passage, Jesus affirms that it is the love that we have experienced that made us the persons now that we would not change. We would not be other than what we are. This statement in itself needs some understanding, for at first glance it does not appear true. Do we really want how we are now? If we believe that love has made what we would not change, then our central core is love, and Love with a capital “L.”

3 – Of the Ego, in Illusion

And the fears have been of the ego, and in illusion, and therefore do not matter in the least. We have suffered, true, but we have suffered in illusion. Nothing real has ever been threatened (from A Course in Miracles). Because we are leaving illusions, and with illusions, the ego, behind, we have nothing left to fear. We can truly realize that the fears of the past are meaningless.

4 – Let Love Direct

So let love direct our course. We will be what we wish when we realize that reality is created of Love, and that nothing but Love counts for anything.

5 – Sequence of Events

If, while caught in the illusion, fears still rear their ugly heads, realize that the best that can happen to us is that we gently turn aside from our fears. Then the ego will dissipate, and we will soon be living in the real world. Awakening will follow shortly thereafter. And all will be well.

6 – Millions of Years

If this degree of salvation seems unattainable today, then let us be patient. It took millions of years for the separation to occur (from the Text of ACIM), and it may take even longer for the separation for everyone to be healed (also from ACIM). But once set on our course, the ending is certain. And for those of us who follow Jesus’s directions, there will very likely be no millions of years. We will help to lead others who have not yet benefited from Jesus’s words.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank You for the knowledge that my fears do not matter in the grand scheme of things—that only Love matters. I would drop fears so immediately that my head will spin. I am relieved that those fears have not impacted anything real.

It is my choice to follow You in every minute detail as well as every grand scenario. Help me to do so. This world is a challenge only when I forget myself. There is no challenge when I gently let intuition rule, guiding each next footfall.

Amen.

Leave Behind Illness, Scarcity, and Disrespect

renior - ladies in the rain
“This is precisely why you must choose not to keep the life of discomfort caused by perceived illness, the life of scarcity caused by perceived lack, the lack of stature caused by perceived disrespect. It is only by your choice that you will keep these things and only by your choice that these things will leave you. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 14.7)”

Affirmation: “I would choose to leave behind illness, scarcity, and disrespect.”

Reflections:

1 – Discomfort

We can choose to leave behind negative things in our lives. Here three aspects of negative living are highlighted: illness, scarcity, and disrespect. How might we do this?

2 – Choice

Choice often does not seem to be a possibility for us. We don’t normally think that we can just decide to be well and free of illness, and have this blessing come upon us. The law of attraction says that we can have what we want to create. But the Self/Christ is the one who does the choosing, and often this Self seems unavailable to us. I say “seems,” for many of us are caught still in the personal self that is contaminated by the ego. The Christ Self does the choosing, and we can influence that Self by taking the personal self deep within.

3 – Illness

We would choose to leave behind illness if we could. Sometimes the Christ Self chooses the negativity of illness for a lesson. But we learned in A Course in Miracles that we don’t have to learn through pain, that learning through rewards is much better and more lasting. Learning through pain is temporary. But it is the only way, often, when we are stubborn. God has to get through to us in some way. And our Christ Self knows this and acts in our lives accordingly.

4 – Scarcity

We fear scarcity, and in this fear we can make the scarcity an illusory reality in our world. God knows that we have material needs, and it is true to the law of attraction, also, that we can create the material wants that we call forth. If this calling forth is for ego gratification, though, the blessing, the happiness, will be short-lived. And we will want and want again, trying to fill ourselves up to avoid scarcity. There is a better way. And that is to let God do the choosing for us. Let Him satisfy our material needs, if not our wants, and we will not have a sense of scarcity even in the midst of plenty. Our own wanting is never satisfied long.

5 – Disrespect

Disrespect is different from the others, for this sense comes often from what others think of us. Wishing that we had the approbation of others is a dead-end street. Wanting approval means that we are in a very “grabby” mood, and we will not have the satisfaction of long being assured that we have approbation. We want a gentile sense of respect from others, and we can have this. But we don’t get it by the wanting itself.

6 – Choose Once Again

If illness, scarcity, and disrespect dog your steps, choose again. As ACIM says, “Choose once again.” The personal self, once it fully understands, is capable of reaching downward, in the heart and mind, to the Christ Self within. And it is this Christ Self that will heal us.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would choose only good things, certain that I don’t have to choose negativity in order to appreciate the positive. I would especially let illness drop away entirely, despite growing older. I can enjoy my physical body and then, when my time comes, lay it down peacefully and without pain/suffering. I can choose this, and if my Self agrees, the way is smoothed.

Be with me today as I seek to have a good day, free of depressed thinking and doleful thoughts. I would be joyous, happy in the blessings which I have. Your way shows me those blessings, and if I just follow guidance, the blessings multiply without any effort at all.

Thank You.

Amen.

Those Who Will Be Visited by Great Change Are Those Who Desire It

RenoirDanceatBougival“As you begin to dwell in the house of truth and see with the eyes of love, you will see far less about the life you lead that you would change than you would imagine. You fear where all your new ideas might take you, and for some great changes may surely await, but those who will be visited by great change are but those who desire it. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 14.5)”

Affirmation: “I will contemplate whether or not I want great change.”

Reflections:

1 – Personal Experience

I know first hand the truth of this passage. I recognize that at this moment I do not wish for great change in my life. There is some struggle, but largely my life is going well (contrary to some periods in the past), and perhaps this passage means that ought to credit my study of A Course of Love with this general good in my life. We do create what we dwell upon, and when we have dwelled upon the good message of ACOL, we are less likely to want great change.

2 – Solution Is Always with the Problem

For those of you who are going through a rough patch of time, yes, of course, choose anew for change. It is very likely that this change for the better will ensue quickly, for the solution is always with the problem, and when we ask for the solution, it presents itself. It is important to note that great change will not be thrust upon us if we are unwilling to experience great change. We will “desire it” and see the change come to pass. We have nothing to fear, for we are perfectly safe.

3 – Gratefulness

The best way to ensure good times as a continuation into the future is to be grateful for what we already have (an interpretation, not emphasized in either A Course in Miracles or ACOL). The function of gratitude is to get us ready for even better things in the future. Even if the present seems dire, we do indeed have many things for which to be grateful, even though our eyes may be blind to those things. Talk to someone who has a fresh eye, who can see the advantages that you do actually enjoy. This is a better pathway than cursing what seems to be darkness.

4 – Change May Come Gradually

Change will come to all of us, but an implication of today’s passage is that the change will not come overwhelmingly or in great quantity if we are living a life that we like. We have become ready to accept what we have.

5 – Acceptance

Accepting what we have is the first step toward increased blessings. And gratitude for what we have is the means. Again, this is an interpretation, and it is based on the law of attraction.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I am intensely grateful today for what I have. It is easy, of course, to be grateful when things are going well. But some individuals develop great faith when things are going badly. And they have learned through pain to do so.

Jesus says that it is not necessary to learn through pain, that learning through rewards is lasting, and learning through pain is not. Let us seek today to learn through rewards. And may those rewards gradually lead us to the changes in our lives that we wish.

If we see much wrong with our lives, let us move forthrightly to change. May we welcome this change, never fearing it. Fear is of the ego, of course, and we are leaving the ego behind—indeed, we have done so, though lapses may still occur. Evolution is not a straight line.

May all of us have a good day. May we rest in the contentment that allows us to be truly productive, but without strain or struggle. We do not have to struggle to be good; we merely have to rest in Your promises. You will take us home, and You will reach down and lift us up to Awakening when the time is right. I rest in that promise today. Thank You.

Amen.

The Ultimate in Salvation

san Marco Renoir painting“It should be becoming clear to you by now that, although you dwell in the house of the truth, you are capable of bringing with you old patterns of behavior. Once the translation of the new thought system for the old is complete, this will no longer happen. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 14.3)”

Affirmation: “I would avoid old patterns of behavior today.”

Reflections:

1 – Christ-Consciousness

We need to translate the old thought system into the new—the old egoic patterns into the new truth of reality as it is meant to be lived through Christ-consciousness, the ultimate in salvation. But we are still caught in the fears of the old pattern, and as long as those fears stay with us, we will have a problem. We will not be moving forward.

2 – Fear

Take time today to contemplate, with God, what we might do to speed along the process to completion of salvation. Many of us have had mystical experiences along the way, even glimpses of Christ-consciousness, but these have most usually not been sustained. Ask, and ye shall receive (from the New Testament). Ask to reach Christ-consciousness and to sustain it. To do so will mean that we make a conscious choice to leave fear behind.

3 – Divine Help

Can we leave fear behind on our own? No! We cannot. We need divine power to leave behind something that has become so ingrained in us. But God’s will for us is surely to leave behind the old thought system of egoic fear, and to walk into the sunlight with Him. He would have us transform ourselves, and ultimately the world. And time does not mean the same to Him that it does to us. What may seem a very long time, even millions of years (from A Course in Miracles), will pass very quickly in the grand scheme of things.

4 – Paradox

Don’t be afraid to leave fear! This assertion sounds paradoxical, and indeed it is. But do we not cling to the past in thousands of ways? Are we not afraid to let go and let God? His truth for us is far greater than we can imagine. He can show us how to lose the past by an all-encompassing movement, even run, toward the future.

5 – God

Let God show us today.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I need to leave fear behind forever. I have often prayed a prayer for the lessening of anxiety, yet despite the glimpses of the ultimate in life, I still invite anxiety from time to time by my attitudes.

Let me leave this foolishness behind now and each day in the future, taking one day at the time. It is not Your will that we cower against this world, though it is true that this world can hurt us. I would not invite hurt by my attitude. I would enjoy tranquility and peace today and every day. Help me to do so.

Thank You.

Amen.

Self-Actualization

Pierre-Auguste-Renoir-painting-ren05
“While the foundation of fear, like the ego, will have left you now, a pattern of behaving fearfully may still remain and as such be a deterrent to new ideas and to action. As long as these patterns of fear remain as deterrents to action, you will not experience the freedom of living from the new thought system. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 14.1)”

Affirmation: “I would be free of fear today.”

Reflections:

1 – Fear

I talk a great deal about fear in this blog, because it is the single most inhibiting characteristic of our lives when we are still dwelling with the personal self that has not been elevated to the Self of form. And that includes all of us, because Jesus says in A Course of Love that nobody has yet sustained the elevated Self of form. As time passes, perhaps a chosen few will sustain enlightenment and then the elevated Self of form will seem to be and will be a goal that all of us can visualize ourselves reaching. We do not make the decision of when, though. That is entirely out of our hands, though we can study to be ready when God calls. He makes the decision of when Awakening will come to each of us.

2 – New Life

We cannot live the new life to which we are called if we cling to vestiges of fear. The continuing pall that such vestiges will drop over our lives would make a better life for the personal self impossible. And we do not want to allow this better life to escape our hands. We need to know how to act, what to do, and what to even think.

3 – Prayer

The best way to prepare is communion with God (a personal interpretation, not stated in ACOL or A Course in Miracles). When we live with the shadow of the Almighty, we live on sacred ground indeed. We live safely, sure of our protection always, as He watches out for us. He does not always save us from pain, but He will always show us a way to prevent turning that pain into suffering. And we do not have to learn through pain (from the Text of ACIM). We can learn through rewards. And the rewards insure that the learning will be permanent. All too often what we learn through pain is temporary, and we forget as soon as the pain goes away.

4 – Christ-Consciousness

We need to live the new life that is held out to us. We catch glimpses of Christ-consciousness, and, even if this is not sustained, we return to level ground with more of ourselves realized. And we are intended to head toward the realization of our Self/Christ. We are meant to be self-actualized. The fact that we cannot snap our fingers and get God to respond should not be a deterrent to our slow and easy acquisition of His words. He will guide us surely to Christ-consciousness. And what He does will last, one day, of that we can be sure.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would be self-actualized today. I realize that I may not have walked far enough along the path to reach this blessing. But I want to think, say, and do the things today that will advance my progress. Help me to do so.

Christ-consciousness is the blessing that we all seek. May I be patient as I catch glimpses, but do not sustain the epitome. I know that there is a reason for this. I am not yet ready, but I pray that I will be soon. I ask this prayer on behalf of my brothers and sisters as well.

Amen.

When I Have Let Grievances Go, I Will Know that I Am Perfectly Safe

camille-monet-and-her-son-jean-in-the-garden-at-argenteuil-renoir-large“I am safe and nothing that I do or do not do will threaten my safety. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 13.8)”

Affirmation: “I cannot threaten my safety today.”

Reflections:

1 – Grievances and Safety

This passage for today is an echo of a significant passage from the Workbook of A Course in Miracles. ACIM say that when we have let all grievances go, we will know that we are perfectly safe. But here in A Course of Love, we are not even warned about grievances (but maybe because we are presumed already to have let grievances go). Nothing that we do or do not do can threaten our safety. We will in a safe universe.

2 – Peace and Quiet

Of course, that does not mean that the body will never feel pain. But our Self will never be hurt. Our core Self is always calm and at peace, quiet. The inner assurance that we can derive from believing this blessing is overwhelming. We can likewise allow pain, if it comes, but we ourselves have the wherewithal not to turn that pain into suffering. We are safe.

3 – Safety and Security

Safety and security are never unsought in this world. But when we are caught by the ego, we cannot know safety and security on a constant basis, because the ego is constantly being undone. Our flights of joy turn to chaos and tears.

4 – Our Only Security = God

In this world, we will live in a much more stable environment when we give up seeking security. Our only security is God, and He has always been there for us, though we have not always known this. If we seek to prepare for our material needs, we may find ourselves shaken, for sometimes we seem to have needs that go unmet. This is the illusory “reality” of this world. Yet God knows our needs, and our real needs are met. Our wants are not always met, and perhaps our Christ inner Self knows that it would not be good for us to have all of our wants met. We get in our heads some very strange wants.

5 – Needs and Wants

Be willing to wait on God’s timing for the satisfaction of wants. First may be a desire for safety, and this is a need that is met, even when we don’t see it that way. The needs are often inscrutable, for we so often confuse needs and wants. What God gives to us may be superior to what we earlier wanted. Let us trust Him enough to know what is best for us.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I have clung to Your promise that when I let all grievances go, I will know that I am perfectly safe. I feel the truth of that promise just this moment. Thank You.

You know that we need safety and security in this world, and the only real security is found in You. Even when bad things happen (and they do in this world), I can know that my Self is not hurt. The inner Christ Self is never harmed, and that is truly the only self that we are. Our egoic personal self often knows flights of joy followed by the depths of despair, because the ego is a false part of belief about ourselves that is constantly being undone. I would let the ego go today. I would make that a priority, though I realize that I may pray this prayer tomorrow also. The ego dies hard. But it does die, and my glimpses of Awakening have shown me that.

Thank You.

Amen.

Love Does Not Demand Payment

impressionist paintings
“How you implement this idea [refusing to believe in earning and paying] will be your choice. But the idea that you do not have to earn your way nor pay your way must be birthed and lived by. While most of you will immediately think of your survival needs, this is far from the only area in which the idea of earning or paying your way can be found. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 13.7)”

Affirmation: “Under the laws of love, I don’t have to earn or pay for my pathway.”

Reflections:

1 – Earning and Paying

Upon reading the passage for today for the first time, we are very apt to discount it as impractical. Of course we have to earn our way! Of course we have to pay for our way! But do we really? What does earning and paying for really mean?

2 – Cost

In the idea of earning and paying, everything comes at a cost. And in the laws of mankind, that is indeed true. But the laws of mankind are laws of illusion, laws of the ego in that illusion. And the laws of love say something very different.

3 – Laws of Love

We still have to make our way in the world, and so it would be very wrong to quit our jobs and expect the world to care for us. We do not willingly give up our livelihood, and that is good. But the laws of love need no payment, and it is in the love that we would live today. We need the love of ourselves toward ourselves (self-love), love for God, and love for our brothers and sisters (giving and receiving). We are not meant to be alone, to be solitary creatures in our isolation because we do not trust.

4 – Trust

We can trust the world to give love back to us that we have also given to the world. And for this blessing there is no need to think of earning that love or paying for that love. The earning and paying are all of the old world, the world before the time of Christ. Now we seek only love, though our material needs do enter in (and rightfully so). God would have all of our needs—physical and emotional—be met. And this will happen as we proceed along our pathway. God’s children lack only from their own choice, but it is a choice of the Higher Self, not the personal self. And lack is not a conscious choice, and so we are not to blame the victim.

5 – Love

Look to love for your answers. Don’t think of any necessity to pay for this love. It is a free gift, an offer from God to us that will not be obliterated.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would recognize today that love is a free offer from You. Your help is also a free offer. There is no reason to think in terms of payment or “earning my way” where You are concerned.

I would seek the love, in relationship, that is mine today. I would willingly recognize that payment taints the agreement that I have made with love. Love is mine to have and hold, as it is for everyone.

May I spend today in love. May all of us spend today in love.

Amen.

Separate and Alone? Or in Relationship?

Impressionist-Paintings-020
“The life of the physical self became a life of suffering and strife only because the physical or personal self forgot that it exists in relationship and believed itself to be separate and alone. In its fear, it made an ego-self which, because it sprang from fear, was not consistent with the laws of Love or of creation. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 12.9)”

Affirmation: “I realize that the personal self can be a Christ Self.”

Reflections:

1 – Ego and Fear

We are in relationship to each other, and that means that we are not alone, even in this world. Of course, God is always within us; He is the All. Yet we are not meant to be alone, and being alone brings on fear. We would, I believe, not have made an ego-self if we had not been so fearful. Yet fear brings on more fear, and a deeper retreat into madness.

2 – Relationship

If we remember that we are meant to be relationship, not only with ourselves, our deepest Self, but also with one another, we will eliminate fear at its deepest. We will eliminate the need to kowtow to the ego, and the ego will gradually wither away. There is no better way to live than to recognize, day-by-day, that the ego is withering away. We turn aside from the ego at very point we recognize that we are believing ourselves to be separate and alone. We turn aside from egotistical leanings, though this is not the full meaning of the “ego.” The ego is a false sense of our personal self, a part of our belief about ourselves. And it was never true. We, on some level, recognize its falsity, and this in turn also makes us fearful. A retreat into madness is always fearful. And we would not retreat into madness.

3 – No Longer Alone

Let us turn to one another today. Let us realize that when we recognize that we are in relationship to our Christ Self within, and the God within, and in relationship to our brothers and sisters, we are certainly no longer consumed by a belief that we are alone. And this sense of being alone has given us, in large measure, the fear that dogs our steps. The ego was developed to answer to that fear, but the ego actually accentuates the fear. The ego-mind is best left behind in the mists of past days with their unhappiness. Let us walk into the sunlight with God, sure in His love and sure in our relationship to All. May we love our brothers and sisters, and bask in the certainty that, just as God is there for us, our brothers and sisters are there for us as well.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would undermine the ego today by recognizing that I have never been separate and alone. I have always been relationship to You, my Self/Christ, and my brothers and sisters—not to mention the physical universe as we perceive it.

Knowing that I am not separate and alone will take away the need to assert an ego-self. I think that I need to set myself apart when I am fearful of myself and others. This attitude need not be. And I would leave it behind forever, beginning today.

Thank You for letting me know that I am never alone, and I have never been. I was a long time coming to this knowledge, but now that I have assimilated, the future looks ever brighter.

Thank You.

Amen.

A Physical Self Is Not Inconsistent with the Laws of God

Robert Hagan 1947 - Australian Impressionist painter - Tutt'Art@ (17)“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. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 12.9)”

Affirmation: “I will rejoice in my physical body today, living in love only.”

Reflections:

1 – No Degrading the Physical

We see that the physical body is not to be degraded as inferior in experience to the things of the spirit. We can live in love with the physical body. And we did not make a “bad” choice when we decided to live in physicality. We simply made a choice that can be glorified.

2 – Body

So many religious traditions deemphasize the body and especially see it as unfortunate. We are taught that we need to bring it under control, that the body will lead us astray.

3 – Ego

Actually it is the ego which will lead us astray. The physical body is neutral (from A Course of Love). It is what we make of the ego that determines how we will live on earth. If we choose out of fear, we will live in a body that seems to react to every stress. We will often regret the body, because its reactions seem to have a mind of their own, and we suffer accordingly.

4 – Illusion

This is all the way of illusion, and if we sense this fear, we are living much of our time under our egoic influence. Let us not do so today, or any day. May we drop egoic influence, and the best way to begin to do that is to do nothing about of egotistical reasons. We can drop the ego; it is choice that we are empowered to make. And when we drop the ego, we will recognize that the body does nothing. It is a thing that allows us to express our self, a means of expression as well as communication, and nothing more. We need neither to fear its reactions or to glorify those reactions.

5 – Body as Communicative Tool

Be with the body in love today. Let the body be a means by which we can communicate with our brothers and sisters. And let us not use the body willfully. We need to recognize that the body does nothing of itself; it is the mind and heart that determine what the body does.

6 – Today

And let the body do only good things today.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank You for the insight, given in the passage for today, that Your will and the body are not at odds. I can be glad that I have a body to serve as a means of communication in this world with my brothers and sisters. I can be thankful for my body as a means of expression. And I do not have to wait for the Other Side, where bodies are ethereal and obey laws different from what I know on earth.

May I use my body well today. May I keep it healthy and strong, physically, and may my emotions be tranquil. May I have emotional stability in my physically healthy body. Illness need not come near me if I create rightly in this world. And illness that does come is a form of external searching, and I would search only internally, in You.

Amen.

Embodying a State You Have Not Even Dared to Dream

Monet_Water_Lilies_1916“As it dawns upon your once slumbering mind that change on a grand scale awaits you, you will grow fearful if you do not realize that what is being proposed to you here is something completely new, something you have not even dreamed of. This state you have not even dared to dream of is a state in which only God’s laws of love exist even within the realm of physicality. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 12.7)”

Affirmation: “I would experience God’s laws of love today.”

Reflections:

1 – Physicality

The passage for today shows us that physicality is not bad, that it is a good state. This is the attitude throughout A Course of Love, which seeks to lead us to the elevated Self of form, a state in which Christ-consciousness is sustained. Of course, we are told that absolutely nobody has sustained Christ-consciousness yet. And Jesus is asking us to reach that state of sustainability. But the idea that the physical body is good is to be celebrated is a departure, in effect, from A Course in Miracles.

2 – Gnostic Influence

There was a heavy Gnostic influence in ACIM, and the world of maya, or illusion, was seen to offer us nothing that we would want. The world did not have anything to offer except the hope of happy dreams, from which we were eventually led beyond to Awakening and the real world. And we were led to believe that the Teachers of teachers were no longer born into this world, but that we receive their teachings from the Other Side (from the Manual of A Course in Miracles).

3 – Elevated Self of Form

But if we live God’s way of love, we can enjoy the physical body in this world. We are no longer looking to the ego for satisfaction in that physical body, but to our Christ Self. And then, if we are faithful to our learning, we will eventually sustain the elevated Self of form.

4 – No Curse!

What a blessing to know that the body is not a curse after all! There is much that we enjoy in this world, and we do not have to wait for the afterlife to enjoy ourselves. And we can enjoy ourselves in innocence borne of an elimination of the ego in ourselves. This analysis, unique to ACOL, is cause for rejoicing.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would embody this new state sooner rather than later. I would see that the physical body is not to be lamented, but to live in, under Your laws. Now nothing is missing. I will eventually die, and my ethereal body may be different from the physical body that I have now, but nothing has to be missing now. I can fully enter into Your laws right now, here and now.

I would choose to experience the elevated Self of form—as much as I can do the choosing, for I know that the final decision is in Your hands. Be with me as I seek to follow the path back to You. Let me turn inward today as I walk a close walk with You.

Amen.

A Warning about Righteousness

paris street - rainy day
“This first lesson on the temptation of the human experience comes in truth as a warning against righteousness. It comes to remind you, as you replace the thought system of illusion with the thought system of the truth, that having remembered the truth of who you are, you are called to forget the personal self who would find this cause for righteousness. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 11.17)”

Affirmation: “I would avoid self-righteousness today and every day.”

Reflections:

1 – Ego

The passage for today gives a stern warning about how the ego can entrap us again. The ego is very wily, and though only a part of our belief about ourselves, it does seem to act out of our control. But it is simply madness, but madness that can wreck great havoc. We are moving from illusions to truth, and when we recognize this, the ego can rear its head through a sense of self-righteousness, that we are somehow “better” for this difference. We are “better” to the ego, which sees this change as a chance for self-aggrandizement. And then we are trapped in illusion again. The journey from the house of illusion to the House of Truth has been aborted.

2 – Only Time Separates

The temptations of the human experience are great, and it is up to us to bypass these temptations. Only time separates the Son/Daughter of God, the Christ Self, from those these trapped in an egoic sense of the personal self. All will find the way back eventually, and we are needed to bring that time closer, because the world is weary, and all things in it are weary (from A Course in Miracles). The world is very tired, and it winds on in a wearying fashion, causing us to weary ourselves (also from ACIM). Do our brothers and sisters not need as greatly? And to save them from themselves, we ourselves must be “saved,” heading through salvation to Christ-consciousness.

3 – Journey

The journey has been long, though it has all been an illusion, and we are actually on a “journey without distance” (from ACIM). Let us not become self-righteous on this illusory journey, negating all the good that we could do for ourselves as well as others. Self-righteousness is such a pitiable state, and those who are on a spiritual pathway are the main ones who are afflicted with this trait. So it behooves us to watch ourselves carefully. We can still backslide, in my opinion. We can still lose our way. And certainly knowing the contents of A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, if we lack the lack and fall into self-righteousness, is a prescription for disaster.

4 – Pray

Let’s pray today that we may be spared from the temptation to think ourselves better than others who have not read all that we have read, studied all that we have studied. We are not better. We are equals. And in heaven we share all talents equally. The only advantage today in having “more” than another is the chance to be happy, and the chance to share that happiness with others. This is all that salvation holds out for us. We are perfectly calm and quiet, without drama, and so enlightenment is really “nothing special” (a Zen thought). But it can be everything for us when we walk the narrow pathway that keeps us from temptations and draws us ever closer to God.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would avoid righteousness today. If I succumb to it, I will be like the Pharisee of the New Testament, who thanked God that he was not like other men, and he left his prayer unjustified. I would recognize that the ego can still entrap me with such thoughts. I would avoid this maladjusted thinking today.

Help all of us to realize that we are here to assist each other in our path toward salvation. I do not seek to proselytize, only to share with others who are ready to hear what I might be able to say. And in this endeavor there is a minefield for the ego. I would avoid that minefield today. Help me to recognize that You are there for all of us, and that only time separates any bit of knowledge that any of us have come to recognize.

Amen.

House of Illusion vs. House of Truth

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“The house of illusion exists within the House of Truth because it is where your brothers and sisters think they are. The house of illusion is not a hell that anyone has been banished to. It can at times be a chosen hell, just as it can at times be a chosen heaven. Choice and the awareness of the power of choice that exists within is all that differentiates one from the other. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 11.13)”

Affirmation: “I would leave behind the house of illusion today.”

Reflections:

1 – Change

This passage for today is a reassurance for our sisters and brothers who are not yet emerging from the house of illusion into the brighter world of the House of Truth. We are elsewhere bidden not to rejoin others in this house of illusion, if we have already emerged into the brightness of true reality. Yet the explosions within cue us to the fact that change is underway. We will not long be without our significant others, with us in the House of Truth.

2 – Hell on Earth

We do not wish for anyone a hell on earth, and the house of illusion is sometimes that. It can also be a heaven, as when we dream the happy dreams that the Holy Spirit brings (from the Workbook of A Course in Miracles). But we are in a more substantial heaven when we have emerged from these illusions. We try to make our elevated Self of form sustainable, and while this is not always a realistic goal, it is realistic to know that we can and do catch glimpses of the real world nearly every day.

3 – Choices

Our choices are open in reality, in the House of Truth. Our choices are restrained in the house of illusion, for our will is imprisoned (from ACIM). An imprisoned will induces discomfort in the extreme, even pain. And we would be free of imprisonment. Let us today resolve to live well, to emerge from illusions into truth.

4 – God’s Will Is Our Real Will

Our choices ought always to be aligned with what God’s will really is, for His will is our real will. This negates the oft-repeated sense that we are being coerced. The Holy Spirit (in ACIM) and the Christ Self (in A Course of Love) do not in any way coerce us. We live a free life, secure in the love of our Father.

5 – Heaven

Let us today live in heaven, whether we are still caught by illusions or whether we have emerged into the light of truth.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would live in the House of Truth today. I would not reenter the house of illusion. And I am actually helping my brothers and sisters more by so doing. I cannot help from within the house of illusion, because my own mind would be caught in illusions again. And I would not have it so.

Be with me as I seek earnestly to live abundantly within the House of Truth. I would leave fear, as an egoic notion, behind. I would enjoy the peace and tranquility that is promised me by you, when I enter the House of Truth. Help me to know only calm and quiet today.

Amen.

Temptations of the Human Experience

renoir - boating party“Thus we begin to address the temptations of the human experience. Two are spoken of in tandem here: The temptation to judge and the temptation to accept the existence of a reality other than the truth. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 11.12)”

Affirmation: “I will seek the truth today, not judging anything or anybody.”

Reflections:

1 – Judging

This passage for today echoes part of a passage from A Course in Miracles: the prohibition not to judge, lest we lose our salvation, our walk toward Christ-consciousness or Awakening. The indication that we try to walk away from the truth is the fact that we, in bowing to the ego, all too often stay lost in illusions—the opposite of truth. Truth is, however, a slippery concept.

2 – Truth?

I once met a man who was trying to employ people in his political operation, and he put great emphasis on publishing the “truth.” But I realized that his mind was lost in illusions, and I felt that he honestly did not have a handle on a “truth.” Many zealots in our world think that they set forth the truth, but we ourselves may have misgivings about the particular brand of truth to which they ascribe.

3 – How Can We Know?

How can we know? In the bottom line, we cannot be sure, even when we have prayed long and hard. Zealots also pray long and hard, and they are certain that God is on their side. The litmus test is whether or not what we believe will hurt someone else. And if there is any chance that what we do will hurt, we can be sure that this particular pathway is not God’s.

4 – Hurt

Of course, our own proclivities in life may mean that we inadvertently hurt others when we tell our truth. This is particularly prone in romantic relationships, when another loves us (or vice-versus), and the love is not reciprocal. This is not the kind of hurt to which I refer. The kind of hurt to which I refer is the kind fraught with violence. And we all know that our wars and rumors or wars, sometimes fought for the noblest of reasons, are examples of hurting, though sometimes, perhaps, unavoidable.

5 – Attack, Judging, and Planning

And we must not judge. ACIM goes further: We are not to attack, and we are not to make plans against contingencies to come (unless prompted by guidance). Judgments hurt us, for we are not in a forgiving state of mind. And so judgments are examples of temptations best avoided.

6 – Today’s Task

So avoid temptations today: Avoid judgments and avoid trying to evade the truth as we see it. We will all make different decisions, based on our personalities and backgrounds, but the way seems clear when we walk the pathway of love.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I need to realize that my greatest temptation right now is to plan for the future, even if guidance has not led me in that direction. This is a path that I would not take, though my idle mind bends in that direction. I would also avoid attacking others, and I would avoid judging others. Right now those two temptations do not hurt me so much as the planning that I am wont to do. Be with me to put a stop to this planning.

I would follow your pathway. I would live as long as you deem right for me, doing healthy things to keep my physical and emotional body is good shape. I would be there for my brothers and sisters. They have been there for me, just as You always have been. Help me to walk the straight pathway back to you today. And guide me ever-closer to Christ-consciousness at the time that You deem appropriate.

Thank You.

Amen.

This Is What You Are Now Called to Do

“This is what you are now called to do:

“Be aware that the love of God lives within you. Live within the peace of God. Live by the truth.

“This could be restated as you are love, you live in peace, you live by or in accord with truth. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 11.7 – 11.9)”

Affirmation: “I will live in love today.”

Reflections:

1 – Jesus

The instructions that Jesus gives today, in this passage from A Course of Love, are not new by any means. But he has an authority that defies explanation, except that he is our chosen leader. He speaks with the authority that he did in the New Testament, when he spoke not as the scribes and Pharisees. It does behoove us to listen to what he tells us in this new century, this time of Christ.

2 – God Is Love

We are to live by the truth that God is love, that we are to live within His peace. Such simple words, but so hard to do! We live in such complicated times, and it would be better if we simplified our lives to reject the complexity, the complexity which is often of the ego.

3 – Live in Love

What does it mean to live in love? As A Course in Miracles tells us, we live in love when we overlook anger and attack from ourselves and others, and by the overlooking, we do not make real, and we are led to forgive the errors made by ourselves and others. This also is easy to say but so hard to do. If we can just remember that we are living in illusion, at least until we have reached the real world that Christ-consciousness shows us, we will be well on our way to a better world, a better experience.

4 – Communicate with God

We find such joy in life when we communicate with God. In the early pages of the Text of ACIM, Jesus tells us that God is lonely when He recognizes that His channels to His children are closed, that we sleep, that we do not communicate with Him. We can change this. The handle to the door of our heart is on our side of the door. God is always ready to accept us; it is ourselves that get preoccupied with the things of this world that take us from Him.

5 – Prayer without Ceasing

Let us give up this spurious living. Let us return to frequent prayer, prayer without ceasing. Is this possible? It is possible to take God as a partner in daily life, to turn to Him as we would to any trusted ally, and to ask, internally, questions about our day with its many problems. We will get answers, so much so that we will wonder why we neglected Him for so long. Why did we not learn years ago that Christianity is eminently practical? Maybe we just have not yet recollected what has been within all along. We do know, and now is the time to bring forth that knowledge again.

6 – Talk to God

So seek to love today. We will fail if we don’t communicate with God throughout the day. Resolve now to talk, internally, to God as we walk through the day. He will be there. And we will know miracles that will warm our heart.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Help me to remember You today. May I walk through this day in close consultation with You. May I do absolutely nothing without knowing, internally, that You are in agreement with what I do. May I reach out to You, metaphorically, though I know that You are really within me. Be with me today.

Amen.

Like Gravitating toward Beautiful Music

pennsylvania impressionism3“You will find that your new language will gather people to you in much the way people will gravitate toward beautiful music. Many will be eager to learn what you have remembered because they will realize that the memory of this language exists within them as well. It will come naturally to you to welcome these back to the common language of the mind and heart joined in unity. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 10.15)”

Affirmation: “I would hope today that I set a good example.”

Reflections:

1 – Our New Language

The passage for today identified the “language” that we will speak in this new world of Christ-consciousness. It will be a language of the mind and heart joined in unity. And this is the wholeheartedness of which Jesus has spoken frequently in A Course of Love.

2 – Setting an Example

We need to think a bit about the example that we are setting for others in our daily rounds. If we avoid this new language, this quiet and beautiful language, our words may be filled with anger and attack. What kind of example would that set for non-believers? How can we draw people to a new life if we, who profess to know better, are constantly falling into egoic attitudes, even though Christ-consciousness shines through in glimpses?

3 – Our Behavior

We need to be consistent in our behavior even when Christ-consciousness is not present. We need to realize that the forgiveness that A Course in Miracles proscribes is possible for us. We can overlook the baiting that others do to us, and we can overlook our own anger, if we are diligent. We can gentle ourselves by a quiet word with God at the point of being overwrought. We can ask what Jesus might do in a similar situation. Of course, he was not without anger, as witness his attitude in the temple during his last week on earth. He drove the moneychangers from the temple. I have long viewed this as a manifestation of extreme stress, for Jesus knew that he was walking toward his death, and a painful death at that, the death of crucifixion.

4 – Forgiveness

The fact that Jesus so behaved gives us an additional reason to forgive ourselves when we slip. But our temptations to slip are not normally so extreme as was his. We face much smaller temptations, though to us they may appear to be huge.

5 – Quietness

Let us vow to set a good example today. Turn aside the attacking word with quietness. Let the language of the mind and heart in unity set forth your pathway. Let us be good to each other, for the day is long and there are many times that we will be tempted to slip into stress that fuels anger. Let us vow to avoid these temptations to anger and attack today. Let us keep to the language of the mind and heart in unity.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would speak the language that will set a good example in this life. I would turn aside from anger and attack and be gentle. I know that I can never set a good example of the things that I believe if I am “venting.” There is never any good reason to raise one’s voice in anger. There will always be regret afterwards.

Be with me as I seek to find the language that will attract my brothers and sisters to me, but not an attraction that will fuel my ego. I seek to have the ego wither away, and I seek to live in peace and gentleness all the days of my life.

Will You be there for me, as I make this resolution?

Amen.

Uncertainty Is Now an Echo from the Past

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

Affirmation: “I will avoid listening to any echoes from the past.”

Reflections:

1 – Fear

When we feel the unmistakable edge of fear, we know that we are thinking amiss, not listening to our heart. And uncertainly, Jesus seems to say here, is a symptom of fear. To be sure! That is what we want now. And that is what we can have.

2 – Personal Interpretation

We are leaving the old thought system behind. How can we do that? There are indications, though the ones that I mention now are not all spelled out in A Course of Love nor even in A Course in Miracles. First and foremost, we can learn to live with ourselves better. We no longer chastise ourselves for our mistakes, but we acknowledge those mistakes and seek to correct them, promptly. We pray a great deal, though this prayer may take the form of fragmentary prayers for others and ourselves. And we thank God for His many blessings, for gratefulness keeps His abundance flowing to us. We use affirmations, scriptural passages from the Bible, ACIM, or ACOL—words that help us to keep on the right path.

3 – Warm Hearts

With regimens like these in place, we walk a surer path. We are uncertain no longer, for our hearts are warmed by the experiences which we encounter. If we remember, from ACIM, that the solution is always with the problem, we will know that whatever uncertainty emerges is easily rectified. We do not have to wait for an answer most of the time, but we wait patiently when the answer does appear to be slow in coming. Probably our own mind is interfering with receiving God’s Answer.

4 – We Just Know

Listen to your heart. We do not need the proofs of God’s favor that the mind would ask to have. We do not need proof of God at all when we are listening to our heart. We just know, and we know in a way that is unmistakable.

5 – Uncertainty

Continuing to live in uncertainty is thus an echo from the past, an echo lodged in fear. And we would be free of fear. We need to walk into the future with confidence, and we can do so. The farther along we walk, the more confident, and the more certain, we become. Thank God for these blessings.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

When I stay close to You during the day, I walk a certain pathway. Things work out well. But when I let You drop from my mind, I walk a turbulent path. I would walk a smooth path today.

Help me to avoid uncertainty. Uncertainty brings on insomnia, and I would be free of that. May I take the steps toward living with myself well. And when I live with myself well, I am living with You well.

There is no better to spend a day than to spend it in fellowship with You. Let me remember this if anything goes awry today.

Amen.

Recognize the Christ-Mind by How Gentle Its Thoughts Are

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“The first step in being able to forget such thoughts [of the ego] is in recognizing them as separate and distinct from the thoughts of your right mind or Christ-mind. This will be easy because the thoughts of the ego-mind were always harsh with you or with others. The Christ-mind and the thoughts that come from the voice of the Christ-mind will be gentle. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 10.9)”

Affirmation: “I would experience the gentle thoughts of the Christ-mind today.”

Reflections:

1 – Gentle Thoughts Give Happiness

Most of us may now recognize that gentleness is much preferred over the raucous shrieks of the ego-mind. And the Christ-mind gives us the gentle thoughts that give us so much happiness. Is it any wonder that happiness is a worthy goal to be sought?

2 – Avoid Harshness

We do not really want to be harsh with ourselves or with others. I have recently prayed that I would get along better with myself. This seems to be an inspired prayer, not unlike a prayer to get along better with other people. We want to be gentle. It is a mandate if we wish to live well.

3 – Flow

What other characteristics accompany gentleness? Peace of mind, tranquility, serenity, calm. And we are more loving as well. When we treat others as well as ourselves gently, we flow with the day. We don’t have to talk ourselves into a good mood; it is part of the blessing of the prayer to be gentle.

4 – Commune with God

The ego ought to be falling away now. And we will know this when we commune more with God. Communion sometimes means verbal prayers, silently or aloud, but it also is a state of mind and heart. We feel better when we communicate with our Maker. Try it and see.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would remember You today. I know from my reading that You are lonely, in an anthropomorphic way, when Your children don’t communicate with You. You recognize that we sleep and need to be awakened. I would awaken at Your command. But help me to be patient.

Help this day to flow well in gentleness. May I avoid harshness in my words and in my demeanor, and may I do You justice as I walk through my day. Others need me, and certainly I need, in an almost selfish way, to treat myself well in order to be able to serve others. There is no better way to live than to talk with You on my daily rounds. I pray that I will not forget You today.

Amen.

Salvation a Game that Happy Children Play

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“Not one situation coming to you now will be a repeat of the past. How can it be when the past was lived in the house of illusion and the present is lived in the house of truth? Being cognizant of this is the only way that the simultaneous learning and unlearning that was spoken of earlier will be able to be realized. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 10.7)”

Affirmation: “I will seek to learn new things today.”

Reflections:

1 – Badly Taught

Earlier in this chapter in A Course of Love, Jesus asks us to forget as much as possible. Apparently he thinks that we were badly taught, and the reason comes out in the passage for today: We were living in the house of illusion. Now, he encourages us ever so much again by saying that we live now in the house of truth. He, if not we, are certain that we have walked far toward Christ-consciousness.

2 – How Happy Are You?

How can we measure our progress? A very simple way is to decide how happy we are, even if life is still tough in some respects and maybe in many respects. We will have an ineffable joy if we are living right. And actually things will turn out better, though Christ-consciousness and the preparation for it do not mean that all will always go swimmingly. Certainly Jesus had things go very badly, though he believed in what he was doing, and history has borne out the wisdom of his pathway.

3 – Do You Blame?

Other ways to know if we are proceeding along a path that leads ever closer to Christ-consciousness is to determine how we feel toward other individuals. Do we still blame them when they act badly? Do we still blame them when they blame us for something? Do we forgive readily? The life that is dedicated to Jesus’s way will proceed in concert with other individuals, always away that we hold each other’s hand as we walk through life. We walk side-by-side also, especially with our significant other, our brother (from A Course in Miracles). If we take turns moving ahead and falling back in this walk, neither we nor our brother make any forward progress. But if we walk gaily along, holding hands, we know salvation to the joyous game that children play (from ACIM).

4 – Walk to the House of Truth

So we walk to the house of truth. We may not always be certain what that truth really is, but nevertheless, we know that we are not wholly caught in illusions anymore. We feel better most of the time. Life seems a blessing, not a curse. And we walk in love of ourselves (for self-love does not have to be egotistical), others, and God.

5 – First Day of the Rest of Our Lives

Take time today to forgive, to love, and to reach ever forward on our walk. Today is the first day of the rest of our lives. Let’s don’t rue the day. We can and will reach Christ-consciousness, if we remain true to what we are reading. Only remember that God Himself makes the decision of when we are really ready to accept the ultimate blessing of living in this time of Christ.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would emphasize my walk toward reality in my prayers to You today. I walk as humbly as I can, though egoic notions still impinge. I am ready to be done with the ego, and indeed Jesus says in A Course of Love that we all, who have reached this far, are done with the ego. May I recognize the truth of this statement.

I would drop my illusions today. I would drop the things that I say to myself that are injurious to myself. May my thoughts and words in in Your will, today and always. Be with me as I seek to walk into truth.

Amen.

Overcome Depression

“Impossible learning goals lead to depression.  This is why we must learn anew with a mind Green-font-b-Wheat-b-font-font-b-Field-b-font-with-Cypress-II-By-Van Goghand heart joined in wholeheartedness.  (A Course of Love, 31.13)”

Affirmation:  “May I avoid depression today by not seeking impossible learning goals.”

Reflections:

1 – Egoic Goals

We have all too often sought to learn things that are impossible for us to learn.  These were goals of the ego.

2 – A Better Way

But Jesus assures us that there is a better way.  We do not have to get depressed, trying to learn something strange that is not “for us” at all, for we do want to leave the ego behind.  The ego always leads to depression, for it is an idle thought that is not really idle.  There are no idle thoughts, for all lead to form at some level (a tenet of A Course in Miracles).

3 – Wholeheartedness

May we seek the wholeheartedness that gives heart and mind in conjunction with each other.  May our minds be so cleansed of egoic attitudes that we can listen to our hearts, and then we can invite the mind back into the equation with a major welcome.

4 – Heart Knows

The passage for today gives a major theme of A Course of Love.  It is not a hard theme to learn.  We know that the heart “knows” in a way that the mind does not.  And we would be wise to listen to our hearts in lieu of convoluted thoughts of our minds.  When the mind is cleansed, then is time enough to welcome it back, with great joy.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would not court depression by seeking to learn things that are impossible to learn.  I would forsake egoic goals forever, and I would take a stance today to do so.  Depression is major life problem for many people, and it just may be that many of us thrive–or fail to thrive–because we are ego-oriented.  The ego is always being undone.  It is always that way.  For every up moment, there is a down one, and the down ones ultimately predominate.  I would be free of this foolishness forever.

Thank You for leading me to understand that the egoic goals that I courted in my youth and early adulthood were false thinking.  I did not know any better.  But now I do.  And I pray to You that I will not let myself be misled by a part of myself–the ego–that refuses to wither away.  I do not need the ego to live a fully satisfactory life, and, indeed, I cannot kowtow to the ego and still lead a satisfactory life.  The ego as defined here is a false way of viewing life, not the organizing principle that another definition would have it be.

May I just turn aside from ego ideals.  May I not actively resist them, for the ego become strong in strife.  Be with me as I seek to take my place as an equal among peers.  There is no need to seek for superiority, for superiority is a false value.  All talents will one day be shared equally among Your children.

Amen.

In God Only Find Your Self

van gogh - birds against dark sky“Give up this notion of losing your Self to God, and you will be done for all time with resisting God.  Only in God can you find your Self.  This is known to you, and is the reason for man’s quest for God throughout all time. . . .Not looking to God to find your Self would be akin to searching everywhere but the Earth for humankind.  If you do not seek where what you wish to find can be found, you seek in vain.  (A Course of Love, 31.10)”

Affirmation:  “I turn to God today.”

Reflections:

1 – Nirvana

Perhaps many of us have feared the concept of nirvana, when the soul loses itself in God completely and is annihilated in God.  But Jesus is not here advocating such a belief.  He says that we find ourselves in God, and it in the Self that is consumed by God that we know peace.

2 – Lose Ourselves to Find Ourselves

Surely we all want to know peace.  And we may not know how to go about losing ourselves in God, losing ourselves to find ourselves.  This is a legitimate question, but one that is easily answered when we give the technique a try.

3 – Feel God’s Presence

When we feel God’s presence, we are giving this technique a try.  And who has not felt God’s presence?  The warmth is palpable, and so welcome.  We would have more of it; we would never leave it.  But the emotions are involved, and when the emotions are involved, there is always change.  So we do not feel God’s presence on a constant basis.  The times that we do feel His presence, though, are enough to propel us forward into asking for my evidence of His Being.

4 – Feeling Warmth in God

May God be with us as we seek His presence today.  Enough times of such warmth will assure us that He is not to be feared, in the sense of being afraid of him, or of the possibility that we will be annihilated.  We will be all-consumed, but not annihilated, and there is a substantial difference between these two concepts.

 

5 – In God

To be all-consumed by God is to feel His love at all times, as well as the love of our Self that negates pain (a tenet of A Course of Love).  This is indeed a blessing that we would seek, and we may ask for it today.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would no longer fear nirvana, which suggests loss that is foreign to my deepest understanding.  I would no longer resist God because I fear losing my Self.  In God I find myself.

Help me to feel Your Presence, a Presence which I feel, in my good moments, as a palpable warmth.  Thank You for giving me this blessing.  And may I do longer have foolish fears of annihilation in You.  Your are my completion, and that is all that I need to know.

Amen.

Akin to Eckhart Tolle

claude-monet-poplars-on-the-epte-81679“In the sense of time described by the word present, there is no infinitude, but only a vague concept of now.  This is the key concept that I not only knew but demonstrated.  This is the legacy, the inheritance, I left to you.  (A Course of Love, 30.8)”

Affirmation:  “I would live in the Now today.”

Reflections:

1 – The Now

This passage from Jesus is well-described by Eckhart Tolle in his book, The Power of Now.  But our minds are like runaway puppies, eager to explore past and future, seemingly impossible to pin down to the present.  Yet the Now is Jesus’s legacy to us.  He lived in the Now, and he wants us also to do so.  It will not come to us by trying, but only by the grace of God.  And we will not lose anything thereby.  We can and should ask now for the experience of living in the present, the present that is eternity.  All moments that we experience are always Now.

2 – A Richness of Life

Why do many spiritual leaders stress living in the Now, if it is so difficult to do?  They do not choose to encourage us in such a practice because it is difficult, but because it works in our lives.  Living in the now allows a richness of life that nothing else can satisfy.

3 – People’s Choices

Many people choose daring adventures that force themselves in the Now.  They report that at such times of such peak experiences, they, for once, felt really alive.  And that is what living in the present will do for us.  It will make us feel truly alive, truly grateful for the opportunity of a life spent on earth.

4 – Just Stop

How do we slow down and stop enough to experience the Now?  The only way to stop is to stop.  Give a few moments to prayer, contemplation, meditation, and the like.  Let the mind become still.  Do not fret.  If we are especially fortunate, then the experience that we have at such moments of stillness will give us a hunger for more times like this.  We will be hooked on the Now.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would recognize eternity.  This is the idea that Jesus is truly getting across.  I would understand eternity by living in the Now.  And all will be well.

I can practice living in the Now by being mindful as I go about routine tasks during the day.  Help me to follow Your way as I go through this day.

Thank You for the revelations that You have given to Eckhart.  

Amen.

Do Not Be Afraid of Death

cezanne - still life - fruit

“This world as you perceive of it is built around the foundation of fear, a fear that stemmed from the belief in finite life, in being born into a body and dying to the body.  The person who knows, truly knows, the simplest truth of the identity of the Self no longer lives in a dualistic position with God, but in a monistic state with Him.  (A Course of Love, 30.7)”

Affirmation:  “I do not have to be afraid of death ever again.”

Reflections:

1 – Death and Our Identity

Today’s passage is, first of all, about death.  But, more than that, it is about our real identity in eternity, the Self that exists in eternity and does not have to ever fear the demise of the body.  Yes, surely, the body will die, but the Self has never even been born into this finite world, because it is totally beyond illusion and is, in truth, a real thing, living in the real world.  (A Course in Miracles indicates, in the Manual, words to this effect.)

2 – Monistic State with God

The passage concludes with the fact that we dwell in a monistic state with God, being One with Him.  We do not have to conceive in any way whatsoever that God is separate from ourselves, for He is not.  When we believe in a separate Being who is God, we are dwelling in dualism, and ACIM and A Course of Love do not teach dualism.  In that sense, ACIM and ACOL are at odds with some biblical statements that regard the world as God’s handiwork, and describe an anthropomorphic figure who can come down and walk with us in the garden.  This is a beautiful myth, and it is not far off track, when we conceive of our deepest being, being God, that we are a part of Him.  We can commune with God, for He is the Universal, and He recognizes that our channels of communication to Him have been closed, because we have been asleep.  And, metaphorically, he “thinks” that He must awaken us.  (These are paraphrases from A Course in Miracles.)

3 – Work with God

Let us do all that we feel God is asking of us to be made ready for Awakening (as ACIM calls it) or Christ-consciousness (as ACOL calls it).  We do not know the hour that this blessing will be bestowed on us.

4 – Awakening

It behooves us to be ready, but not to strive to be ready.  Awakening is the gift of God, and we do not have to make elaborate preparations for its arrival.  The holy instant will so transform us that Awakening will be easy and tranquil, relaxed and peaceful.  (The “holy instant” is described in ACIM.)

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I thank You that I am no longer afraid of death.  I am probably more afraid of suffering unto death.  But I ask You to help me with that as well.  I know that life is eternal, but I did not come to this conclusion on blind faith.  There are indications along the way, and I thank You for leading me to read the right things that supported, for me, a belief in eternal life.

Help me to get ready for Awakening, but I know that it is not indicated to strive for Awakening.  You make the decision, and I await Your good pleasure.  Thank You for the glimpses of Awakening that You have shown me.  And those glimpses show me that what will come is good.

Amen.

Be Like the Little Children

Sunset_Foggy_Weather_Pourville - monet“Your learning must take on a new focus.  Be like the little children and inhale the world around you in order to make it part of your Self.  Be like the little children, and learn in order to claim your learning for your Self.  Learn who you are through each experience rather than learning in order to find out who you are or what your contribution will eventually be.  (A Course of Love, 30.3)”

Affirmation:  “I would think of a childlike response to the world today.”

Reflections:

1 – Echo of the New Testament

This passage echoes the New Testament, of course.  And here Jesus is using the analogy of little children to teach us a new way to learn, and it is through observation (though he does not say so at this point).  We need to “inhale” (a strange word) the world that surrounds us in order to learn through each experience that we have.  It is the process, rather than the end result, that Jesus emphasizes in today’s passage.

2 – Being Supersensitive

How might we inhale the world?  How might we observe?  We can indeed become supersensitive to the world in which we find ourselves, and supersensitive to the daily experiences on our daily round.  Neither of these suggestions is difficult.  But we need to get beyond a focus on the end result of what we are seeing (observing), just to experience–period.  Then the observation that we make will be learning in a new way, the new that has been presaged in A Course of Love.

3 – The Present

Often we settle down into a book or a web site, and concentrate with all our might on the message that it might contain.  But we also have an eye to the future, what we will get out of this message that will transform us, or somehow make us better.  This is not living in the present, and many religious leaders counsel living in the present as much of the time as possible.  Always the present is the only time that there is, but, oh, how hard it is for us to recognize this very simple truth.

4 – Observation

Observation of the outer world, focus on our experiences in it–both will eventually take us to the present, and to our home in God.  May we leave aside preoccupation with past and future today as we dwell in the only place that there truly is, the present.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I spend time today thinking of what it means to think as a little child.  I recognize that this is not an exercise in immaturity, but the height of rationality and good sense.  But I don’t usually think this way.  Perhaps I need to trust You ever more, and trust is a prime attribute of little children.  They normally have trust in their parents, and I can transfer that same kind of trust to You as my heavenly Parent.

I do not fully understand trust.  Guide my thoughts today so that I come to comprehend better.

Amen.

Worry Explained

van gogh - flowers4“All your worry over the future and the past is but a worry about the return of gifts given.  What gift of opportunity did you not accept in the past, might you not recognize in the future?. . . .What peace might you know if you realized, truly realized, that all gifts come but once and are forever?  The past nor the future matter not.  All is available in the here and now where giving and receiving occur.  (A Course of Love, 29.25)”

Affirmation:  “I would cease worry immediately, for gifts are given permanently.”

Reflections:

1 – Obscure Passage

The meaning of this passage is a bit obscure until we dissect the sentences.

2 – Past and Future

First, we are to cease worrying over past and future.  We have been afraid that the peace that we know in the present is a brief peace that will disappear when circumstances.

3 – Giving and Receiving = One

This does not have to happen.  Our faithfulness to the truths that Jesus gives us in A Course of Love, the giving and receiving as one, is all that is required.

4 – Accept God’s Plan

Second, we have the opportunity to accept the plan of God today.  We do not have to let this opportunity slip by the wayside.  And we must not.  We need not fear that this opportunity will not be offered again (for it will), but why wait?

5 – Christ-Consciousness

Third, the peace that we feel can and will be permanent when Christ-consciousness is sustained.  This may be a long time off, but in the meantime, many of us will be given glimpses of the revelation that all is well.  We will know Christ-consciousness in ever-greater intervals of time.  And that is the great promise.

6 – Giving and Receiving

Giving and receiving are one.  How often and how long have we known this?  But perhaps these words are simply words to us.  To give is to invite the receipt of the gift given.  We find that like attracts like, and this is the law of attraction, about which so much has been written recently.  Many have found the truth in this law, but we would find amiss if we stop with just the material benefits.  The material benefits will not long satisfy.  It is the intangibles of God that count for the most–the joy, the harmony, the peace, the tranquility.  And in these intangibles do we learn the most about giving and receiving being of one.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would cease worry, the worry that has dogged my steps for many years.  All of this is such foolishness.  Do I or do I not trust You?  I know that if I follow Jesus, everything will be alright.  And Jesus’s words in A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love are manna unto my spirit.  Thank You for his part in Your plan.

May I return also to the Bible in my contemplative moments.  I see the Bible, especially the New Testament, ACIM, and ACOL as part of a continual tradition.  Others may not agree, but I thank You that this interpretation gives me peace.

May all of us have a good day.  May none of us turn pain into suffering.  With You in our lives, welcomed in, then all indeed is well–regardless of outer circumstances.  Thank You.

Amen.

Choose Once Again

“The choice to change your belief is before you.  Are you ready to make it?  As you once pissarro_stage-coachchose separation you can now choose unity.  Not knowing that unity was a choice prevented you from making this choice before now.  Now I tell you clearly, the choice is yours.  Choose once again.  (A Course of Love, 29.18)”

Affirmation:  “I would choose unity today.”

Reflections:

1 – The Way to Christ-Consciousness

We need to change our beliefs, to believe no longer in the separation that never was, and to embrace the unity that always has been–which we are now ready to accept.  There is no other way to Christ-consciousness.  We must be aware that we are “as” relationship to all, “as” as well as “in.”  And it is in the “as” that we come to see that we cannot get along without communion with God, with our deepest Christ Self, and with other people, our brothers and sisters.

2 – Unity Our Greatest Need

When we recognize that unity with the All is our greatest need, we will be willing to cease this desire for meaningless independence, the isolation that so many of us feel deep in our minds and, perhaps, even, we think, in our hearts.  Our hearts do not really feel thus, though, for they do not have the intellectual doubts about God that stop or, at least, impede, so many of us.  Let us ask for the intellectual understanding that will quell our restless minds, but let us not get hung up about it.  We know in our hearts that God is real, and that He is the only real thing in a real world.  Everything else is illusion, for we ourselves, and everything, is a part of God.  Our brothers and sisters are, likewise, one with God and one with ourselves.

3 – God’s Blessing

It is time to choose again, to choose the blessing that God would bestow upon us.  Fear can fade away when we say the affirmations that come us to from A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, as well as the Bible.  These affirmations proclaim a truth that is above doubt, a truth that all is really well with us–regardless of outside circumstances.  Even pain is alleviated and kept from escalating into suffering when we live close to the deepest within ourselves, the deepest which is God.

4 – Join in Unity

May we join forces with all whom we see today, to join in unity with our brothers and sisters, and to pray for the Christ-consciousness which will mean that we will live in unity without any time constraints, permanently.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

We need to get very clear about what we need–and that is a unity with all, You and All that exists.  May I reach the clarity that will tell me this in my deepest heart of hearts.  May I depend on You for the answers to my needs, knowing that needs are always answered.  My wants may not be realized, and that is as it should be.  I may want what would hurt me.

Thank You for helping me to realize that I must keep my mind clear to avoid attracting the wrong things.  I have some say in this, though You will guide me–always–when I let myself be open to guidance.  May I follow Your will and Your way today, all through the day.

Amen.

Cease Toiling

ptg-monet-magpie“Your work is that of creation.  Your creation is your service to the world as your Father’s work is his service to you.  As you cannot imagine God toiling, so you should cease to imagine yourself doing thus.  (A Course of Love, 29.10)”

Affirmation:  “I would refrain from ‘toiling’ today.”

Reflections:

1 – Protestant Work Ethic

Many of us think that God is a hard taskmaster, because the Protestant work ethic is embedded in our culture here in the United States.  God is not a hard taskmaster; it is ourselves that merely think this, erroneously.  God would have us work effortlessly, and when we are living the Self/Christ that we really are, we are at peace, relaxed, and capable of great service to others (and ourselves) without strain.  We work the easy way.

2 – Toil Unnecessary

It is only our perchance for toil that seems to bring it upon us.  We do not need to toil in service to ourselves, and we also do not need to toil in service to others.  Easy does it.  The best and hardest work is that which is the easiest to do.  We may not immediately believe this assertion, but let us reread the passage for today, and, if we believe it, we will know this to be true.

3 – Creation

Our creation is not the “making” that was of the ego.  Instead, our creation is creating in the real world, the world beyond illusions, the world of joy, peace, harmony.  These intangibles of God find concrete form when we listen to His guidance to us.  And only then.  We work amiss when we try–try–to do “good works” for Him.  He would not have us strive to please Him by such means.  He will teach us the easy way to work, if we will only listen.

4 – Hardest Work Becomes Easy

So, let us have no more of hard toil.  The hardest work, objectively, becomes easy when we invite God into the mix.  Let us do so today.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

When we relax in Your embrace, the most stressful day becomes smooth.  We do not need to toil, wearing ourselves out.  When we are at home in You, then we can work very, very hard–but the work will seem effortless.  And, of course, effortlessness is the easy way to work.  

Thank You that Jesus said long ago that his burden was light.  And when the burden is light, it truly is not a burden at all.  May we spend the rest of today thanking You with grateful hearts for the burdens that no longer weigh heavily upon us.

May we cease fretting and worry.  These are among the most common burdens, and with You in us, with us aware of You in us, fretting and worry are understood to be needless.

May the day go well.  May we bless our brothers and sisters with our words, our thoughts,
and our actions.

Amen.

My Child, Return to Me

monet - lily pads2

“If God were to speak to you Himself and tell you of what means your service would be to Him, He would but tell you this:  My child, return to me.  God has no Will apart from yours.  Your return to unity is all God seeks for you, for Himself, and for all His children.  The return to unity was my [Jesus’s] accomplishment, and all that is meant by what I have often repeated here:  Only you can be accomplished.  Your service is but dedication to this goal.  (A Course of Love, 29.6)”

Affirmation:  “I would return to God today.”

Reflections:

1 – Beautiful Passage

This passage for today is indeed beautiful.  If all God asks of us is to return to Him, then we would do well to heed Him.  Our will and God’s are actually identical, and therefore we do not have to fret that we will be led down paths that we don’t want to take.  We need to realize that we are part of the while, and in returning to the One (God) we return to unity.  We are living in relationship to all at the same time that we are unified with all.  Unity and relationship are touchstones for A Course of Love.

2 – The Accomplished

We will serve, ourselves and others, and in this service we will become like Jesus, in that we will be “the accomplished.”  We need not fear that this is arrogance of the ego, for it is not.  It is the way that things actually are when we are living the Self/Christ.

3 – Elevated Self of Form

The Self/Christ is the elevated Self of form, which means that we are living a physical existence in this world, but we are elevated to the union with God that we all so need.  Union with God, the unitive state, is what mystics of all generations have found, and in the finding they have known peace indeed.

4 – Of Service

Let us ask today to be the accomplished, and with this accomplishment, we will want to be of service to ourselves and others.  We can ask no great blessing than this, to be One with God and our brothers and sisters, one with the All.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I be patient as I am of service to others today.  May I make sure that I am embracing You at every turn.  This is what You want.  This is what I want.  May I not let impatience for more hold me back even further.

My I embody the elevated Self of form as soon as You deem possible.  May I enjoy the days that lie between now and then, and may I remain patient always.  Only You know best.

Amen.

Avoid Over-Dependence on Others

“Knowing is alien to you, and that is why you seek validation.  Each validation is seen and felt as a reward, a prize, a confirmation that you believe allows your conviction to grow.  Because you believe it, this is, at first, quite true.  But now it is no longer the time to rely on conviction that comes from the witnesses you find along your way.  (A Course of Love, 28.10)”

Affirmation:  “May I depend on my own knowledge.”

Reflections:

1 – Warning

All of us on the pathway back to God have turned to other people and their words to help us make the journey.  But here there is a strong warning from Jesus.  We are not to become too dependent upon others.  We are, instead, to rely on the inner Self/Christ.  We turn inward for correction, as well as an indication of the next step to take.  And we will not be disappointed.

2 – Commune with God

This passage does not say this, but it seems to me that the gist of it is a powerful incentive to commune with God far more of our waking hours than we normally have.  If we turn inward, we are, in fact, turning to God, so long as we are assured that the Self/Christ inside is operative.  If we turn to the egoic part of our mind, and we encourage the personal self to emerge, we will often be misled.  Let us have none of that.

3 – Validation

Validation does not have to come from other people.  We can live quite sanely through following our own lights.  The problem is not that we don’t know enough, but that we don’t put into practice what we do already know.  Let’s change this today.  Practice what we know.  Yes, that is the way home to God.  If we depend on others, we will get very confused.  Politicians learn this truth the hard way.  There are so many advisors, and they differ so much in what advice they give.  The wise politician looks to his/her own lights in making decisions, once all the facts are in.  We ought to do no less.  And our own lights include God and His advice.

4 – Bible Verse

The Bible has a telling verse:  “If ye know these things, happy ye are if ye do them” (from John).  This verse seems particularly apt to our passage from A Course of Love today.  We choose amiss when we don’t listen to the God within, to the Christ/Self within, but instead look overly to our brothers and sisters for validation of what we feel unsure about.  We can easily be misled by others who do not see the whole picture.  When we ourselves feel unsure, because we know that we can’t see the whole picture, how can we depend on others in any sure way?  So we look within.  And there we find God’s guidance reaching out to us.  He knows.  Listen today to Him.

5 – Egoic Mind

We are so used, in our egoic minds, to looking to others to make us feel good.  We certainly do not need to make this mistake again, or, indeed, anymore at all.  Look within.  Pray,  Commune with God.  And much more will go wel for us.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would look to You today.  I would not depend on others to tell me what to do.  They do not know.  You do.  Thank You for your good advice.

Validation is important, but the source must be credible.  And this Source is God.  The most credible Source of All–indeed, the only One.

Be with us today as we seek to have positive experiences.  Help me to live peaceably with my brothers and sisters.  May the actions that they take toward us be well-considered, and may we also treat them well.

Amen.

You Can Know without Knowing What to Do

pissarro - trees“As the dawn is unrestrained  in its bursting forth, so has been your time of innocence.  Not so the approach of day as the sun slowly rises and as slowly sets.  This is a time of being both guided and restrained.  A time of realizing that you can know without knowing what to do, and that this is not a mistake.  (A Course of Love, 28.10)”

Affirmation  “I will be patient today in my ‘knowing.'”

Reflections:

1 – Reassuring Passage

This passage is a reassuring gesture on the part of Jesus to us who are still learning.  We may have experienced a sudden relief when we realized that we truly are innocent, but as time goes on, the movement toward Christ-consciousness slows down–as the sun slowly rises and slowly sets.  While this slow movement is not always the case and does not receive the most attention, it is the most common way.  We see glimpses before Christ-consciousness can be maintained.  Indeed, maintaining the elevated Self of form is very rare indeed, at least at this time in our history.

2 – Commune with God

But we can commune with God, we can internally ask questions of Jesus, and we can read A Course of Love–all to get a roadmap to enlightenment.  Most of the outstanding examples of enlightenment in our history have been sudden experiences, but the very suddenness may have given rise to the awareness of the existence of these people.  A more gradual Awakening is kinder to us, for then the light does not suddenly dawn upon us, leaving us perhaps a bit frightened.  (These are interpretations based in part on both A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love.)

3 – Rest in Stillness

When we “know,” but don’t know what to do, I think it would be wise to rest in stillness until we do know what to do.  We do not want to go off willy-nilly, making mistakes that will only set us back.  Ask for guidance, for the solution is always found with the problem.  We will always be answered, and my experience is that it does not take long for the answer to come.  Ask, and ye shall receive (from the Bible).

4 – Imaginary Bonds

We often strain at imaginary bonds that seem to restrain us.  We have learned so much from A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, and we are so eager, as a result, to walk the whole pathway to Awakening or Christ-consciousness.   Our eagerness with A Course of Love is greater than with ACIM, even.  This difference, this increase, is because we finally see that we have “learned” all that is needed, and we simply need to assimilate our learning so that it becomes knowledge rather than perception.  The knowledge cannot come until we let the ego die, and sometimes this dying is painfully slow–even when we wish it to happen fast (perhaps especially when we wish it to happen fast).  The knowledge will go with us on the whole pathway to full salvation.  And we need to rest awhile in peace, before we will know what our next steps ought to be.  We are not bade to evangelize the world, but we are bade to live in it as followers of Jesus.  At this point he is fast beyond our companion, our teacher no longer.

5 – Change in This World

Help us to assimilate this knowledge so that the change can happen universally in this world.  Life is at a crisis point (as life has always been), and we need to accomplish what we can to wish our brothers and sisters well in all of their activities toward salvation.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank You for the knowledge that will lead me to Awakening.  I would be ready sooner rather than later.  I would not delay by egotistical means.  I would drop the ego.  Help me to do so, today.

Be with us as we seek to have a good day.  This is a blessing, to have a good day.  May we enjoy our companions, including Jesus, if we can believe that he is always by our side.

Amen.

Being Sure of God

“There is a trust that goes beyond proof and beyond the need for any witnessing at all.  van gogh - stilllife - fruitThis is the trust of knowing.  Knowing is of the heart, and holds a consistency and certainty that the dawn of innocence does not contain.  (A Course of Love, 28.5)”

Affirmation:  “I would ‘know’ today.”

Reflections:

1 – Knowing vs. Perceiving

Jesus has longed for us to know since he first mentioned these words in A Course in Miracles.  There he contrasted “knowing” and “perceiving,” and indicated that only in knowing is there permanence.  Perception was what we had projected from within, and it is illusion, for we are living in a dream.  Elements of the real world do surface, though, when we live from knowing.  Knowing is of God, and it something for which we are now ready.

2 – Intuition

Listen to your heart.  Sometimes this heartfelt message is sensed as intuition, but not always.  There are many ways that the heart can come to understand.  Inspirational words of others are yet another source.  And, of course, scripture–whether of the Bible, other holy books, or the latest perennial philosophy of ACIM and ACOL.

3 – Innocence

When we have first known innocence, and known that it is of ourselves, we have loosed the hold of the ego on ourselves.  This is where ACIM took us.  We have not sinned, but have merely made mistakes that we would correct, and which we would forgive in ourselves.

4 – Jesus

But we have traveled beyond simple innocence now.  We know that the innocence is a fact, but we also know many other things.  Jesus has taken us by the hand, and through the reading of A Course of Love, he is leading us to full equality with him.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I be sure of You today.  I have had faith for a long time, and I do not leave my mind at the door when I pray.  I know in a way that I did not when I was younger.  Thank You for this certainty, for this truth of knowing that You are with me always.

May my trust be expanded.  Trust has been a bit of a problem for me, and I would not have it so.  Trust is the bedrock of our salvation, and I would trust completely and wholly that You are with me all the time.  Thank You for the trust that is growing within me.

Amen.

Lightheartedly in the Flow

pissarro - artist's garden“When you are guided to act in ways that are contrary to usual patterns of action you have taken in the past, you will often meet resistance.  Try to be lighthearted at such times and to remember that if it ‘doesn’t matter,’ you might as well try the new way.  Remind yourself that you have nothing to lose.  You will soon learn that this is so.  (A Course of Love, 25.24)”

Affirmation:  “I will follow guidance consistently.”

Reflections:

1 – Guidance

One of my favorite topics to think about is the question of guidance.  And this passage for today is directly on this topic.  What might I say to you about guidance?

2 – “Turn on a Dime”

First, it is hard to be consistent in following guidance.  I still pause and consider before acting, and this may not be a bad thing.  Our emotions can carry us away, and we can do unwise things.  We would not do insane things, and insanity is an attribute of an undiminished ego.  I often ask to be able to “turn on a dime,” once the guidance appears to be sure to me.  And when I do, I never regret it.

3 – Clear Mind

Guidance is also lighthearted and clear to the mind.  We do not have to obsess or to analyze.  Something within us just “knows.”  And, when we act accordingly, we will soon come to see that it is as Jesus has said, we will find out that all is right.

4 – No Pressure

Guidance is not pressured.  If we feel pressured, it is likely that the ego is involved, and that we are misleading ourselves.

5 – How to Know Guidance?

How do we know guidance?  Feelings, intuitive feelings, mainly.  But dreams do figure prominently in the Bible, and I do also listen to my dreams.  If the dream is particularly lucid, it becomes a touchstone for my life.

6 – In the Flow

When we are “in the flow,” so to speak, of life, then guidance comes easily and is welcomed.  When we are resisting, we ought to wait.  We are not ready.  Do not fight yourself, as Jesus says in A Course in Miracles.

7 – Great Blessing

Guidance is one of the greatest blessings of God.  And we ought, therefore, to take it seriously, but, paradoxically, with a light heart.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

We all live too highly strung lives, even those of us who are not working full-time.  Our emotional lives are too much in turmoil.

Jesus can help us with this, as he tells us what to do in A Course of Love.  Follow guidance, but with a clear mind and a light heart.   Guidance comes in many ways, and it behooves us to try to listen wisely.  Not passively or without thinking, but with the full use of our faculties.  But we must not make a big deal of evaluating guidance, for by its very nature, it is a bit beyond us.  Guidance comes, frequently, in intuition.  But a word from a book may just as easily speak to us.

Help me to turn on a dime, if I am on the wrong pathway.  Be with all of us today to give us, with Your help and our cooperation, a good day.

Amen.

Gifts of God

KarenV-Monet-Step-6“All gifts of God are given equally and distributed equally.  It is your belief that this is not so that causes judgment.  All who believe they have ‘more’ fall prey to righteousness.  All who believe they have ‘less’ fall victim to envy.  Both ‘fall’ from grace and limit their ability to receive.  (A Course of Love, 20.40)”

Affirmation:  “God grants gifts equally to all.”

Reflections:

1 – Depression

We often think, in our egoic mind, that another is superior to us in some way, and this activates the depression of the ego in its deflation.  All egoic thoughts work this way.  There is a great deal to be said for depression as the result of the ego being undermined at every turn.  And what other way could work to turn us from the ego?  If it made us happy all the time, our salvation would be impossible to reach.

2 – Gifts Are Given Equally

God gives all gifts equally and distributes all gifts equally.  When we feel “less than” another, we judge; the same, when we feel “more than” another.  It is true that in this world gifts appear to differ, but one day all will know that everything belongs to all, and in equal measure (from A Course in Miracles).

3 – Righteousness / Envy

We would not fall prey to either righteousness or envy.  We would give up these deplorable attitudes.  Instead, we would welcome our brothers and sisters as the students/teachers of the Way that they are.  We are all equal in God’s sight.  And when we humbly accept our lot in life, to be improved as God’s grace shows us, we will be living a more desirable life.  We can strive to achieve, but not for egoic reasons.  The ego always loses in the end, and if we seek to prop up our weakened ego, we will lose all the blessings that A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love are seeking to give us.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I do believe that the rain falls on the saved as well as the sinner (so to speak).  I do believe that the gifts of God are a free gift, that He wants to help us walk through life.  And I have had the mystical experience that proved this, at least to me, and this happened many years ago.  I have not doubted that God’s gifts are a free offer of help in all the years since.

Thank You.

Amen.

Overcoming Fear of the Unknown

“You shy away from thoughts of a consciousness beyond that which you are aware of because of fear.  And yet you know you cannot claim that you are aware of all that exists within the universe, or even that you fully know your own self.  What is fearful about the unknown is simply that it is unknown.  Coming to know what was previously unknown to you can remove the fear, if you will let it.  (A Course of Love, 17.3)”

renoir - womenAffirmation:  “May my fears of the unknown end today.”

Reflections:

1 – Our Consciousness

We do have a consciousness beyond what we have known previously, at least as far back as we can recall.  We fear the unknown, and this greater consciousness is unknown and therefore fearful to us.  But this circumstance does not have to arise, or, if it does arise, it can be addressed by communing with God.  So much is resolved when we pray.  Let us not give short shift to this necessity in us as children of God who need to communicate with Him.

2 – The Universe

There is much that we do not know about the universe and even about ourselves.  And the only reason that it is fearful is because it is unknown.  When we pray to be shown, through our heart, what about our self we do not know, we will be free of the fear.  And once we know, we are at home in God.

3 – The Self/Christ

We do not want to shy away from thoughts of our greater consciousness, for the greater consciousness, the Self/Christ, is our way home.  So we shoot ourselves in the foot when we let our egoic self loose to arouse fear.  May we avoid this reaction today and everyday.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would not fear the unknown, as I did when I was a child.  We are no longer children, and we do not have to fear the dark, the unknown.

May I reach out to You in communion today, and may I reach out to Jesus as my companion.  He has promised to come to all of us in response to one unequivocal call.  I make that call right now.  And I ask him to guide my hand as I type.

May all of us have a good day today.  May we cease to struggle so much, for life, regardless of our difficulties, is meant to be joyous.  I reach for that joy today, without pushing or straining against my day.

And may I sense Your presence all the day through.

Amen.

Union

“Instead of recognizing your union, a state in which you are whole and complete because you are joined with all, you have determined to stand separate and use the rest to support your separate stance.  Do you see the difference in these two positions?  In what way is your way better than the way God created for you, a way that is completely free of conflict?  (A Course of Love, 9.49)”

Vincent-Van-Gogh-painting-wallpaper-Paintings-Wallpaper-19
Affirmation:  “union–not separateness”

Reflections:

1 – What Does “Union” Mean?

What does Jesus mean by “union”?  It is the same idea, I think, that he alludes to earlier in the first volume of A Course of Love–the holy relationships that we develop as we drop the separate stance that is actually the special relationship (an interpretation, not stated in ACOL).  Why is it so important to let go of the superficial values that special relationships provide?  For they provide for an illusion of safety, an illusion of a haven–not the real thing.  In this world our holy relationships normally being as special ones, but, if we follow Jesus, the special turns into the holy.  We see our brothers and sisters for their intangible values, and we walk in union with them.  We do not separate as we will, when we are disenchanted because he or she has not fulfilled some part of the secret bargain that we have made with them.  We stay the course, and we look for the peace and joy that is a part of all that is holy.  We do not mind the fading beauty as years go by; we don’t even see fading beauty.  All of our holy relationships simply become more precious as time goes by.

2 – The All = God

We join with the All, the God in All.  This is union; this is not separatism that masquerades as union.  We do not let disappointments that our brothers and sisters are not perfect interfere with the love that we have for them.  We bask in the glory of their union, and ours, with God, and we join hands to walk toward Christ-consciousness.

3 – No Conflict

We are not in conflict at such times.  We do not encounter conflict very often, even though the Dalai Lama said that he sometimes feels anger.  That is the human part of the human/divine joining that we will come to know.

4 – Need to Love

We need to love, and to love deeply.  We especially need to love when we are feeling unloving.  Holy relationships do not demand that we be perfect.  Jesus does not demand that we be perfect (from ACOL).  We are human beings on a divine mission, with a spirit inside that is both human and divine.  When we recognize the divine, we will have walked at least a few steps along the pathway to Christ-consciousness.  And all will be better for us.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would choose union with the All today, and that includes my brothers and sisters as well as You.  May we have a good day together.  May we join, knowing that this is Your will for us, and we need You and each other.

Be with us as we seek to have a good day.  There is no reason for conflict when You are sensed by us.

Amen.

The Christ in Us

“It is easy to imagine how the Christ in you differs from your ego but not as easy to recognize how the Christ in you differs from spirit.  The Christ in you is that which is capable of learning in human form what it means to be a child of God.  The Christ in you is that which is capable of bridging the two worlds.  (A Course of Love, P.7)”

Affirmation:  “Help me to recognize the Christ in me.”

Reflections:

1 – Christ = the Self

This passage is part of the theology of A Course of Love.  The Christ in us is the Self in us that A Course in Miracles mentions.  And the Christ mitigates between the mind in this world, the mind of the personal self, and the spirit, which is akin to the soul and has never been born.

2 – Beautiful Words in ACOL

While I have given you this quotation to give some context for A Course of Love, we do not need to let theology delay us, if we find the words difficult to understand and, especially, difficult to accept.  Jesus is ever-practical, and in this blog we will assume that it is indeed Jesus who is talking in A Course of Love.  But even if this belief is too much for you to accept, just pay attention to the words, which are lovely indeed.  See if there is not something that will captivate you, as the words did for me.  Give A Course of Love a chance.

3 – Christ-Consciousness

The Christ in us will lead us eventually to Christ-consciousness, or the Awakening, or the Enlightenment.  The words all mean the same.  But in A Course of Love, Jesus says that nobody, just nobody, has sustained Christ-consciousness yet (the trilogy was written ten years ago or so).  He doesn’t even make an exception for himself, and this seems difficult for me to accept, something that I can’t quite know he meant to say.

4 – Glimpses Come First

I do know that many of us have had glimpses of Christ-consciousness, either over a few days, months, or, perhaps, even years.  So we may know what to expect more than we realize.

5 – Christ-Consciousness Ever More Constant

Pray today that Christ-consciousness might come upon more and more of us, sooner and sooner.  Then this world would indeed morph into something much grander than we know today as a troubled and difficult place, with light coming only from our spirituality.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would ask You, today, to lead me by the hand and show me another glimpse of Christ-consciousness.  I know that You have done this before for me, at first a long, long time ago–long before I found A Course in Miracles.  Help all whom I encounter today to be happy and at peace.  Help me to increase their happiness and peace.  Joy is the best form of reward for those of us who find Jesus’s message compelling.

Thank You for being there for me when I needed guidance.  I ask for guidance, and the guidance came to me.  At first I rejected it as just my notion, but a day later, I know that what I experienced was really meant to be followed.  A day later, I followed your guidance.  And tomorrow will be the better for an obedient turn of my mind and spirit.

Thank You for even the shocks of this day.  In the past day, I have learned of one death, and there is someone clinging to life, now without life support.  Be with us in these matters of life and death.  And help us to know, as Ruth Montgomery’s Guides said, that death is like walking through an open door.

Amen.

React Wholly without Anger

“God’s teachers’ major lesson is to learn how to react to magic thoughts wholly without anger.  Only in this way can they proclaim the truth about themselves.  (M-18.2)”

Affirmation:  “no anger today”

Reflections:

1 – An Interpretation that Is Not True

When one of our significant others says something that angers us, we can be sure that we have made an interpretation that is not true (based on ACIM).  If we feel that the statement is patently false, we may feel anger surging upward.  And we may react badly.  Is this how we would represent God’s Way to the individuals in our lives?

2 – Egoic Tantrums

If the thought stated by another is magical in thinking, then we especially need to be conscious to not responding with anger.  We will make the statement true for both of us.  We will lose ourselves in an egoic tantrum.  And it is not this that we would do.

3 – Major Lesson

The passage for today indicates that we have these ideas as a “major lesson”:  God’s teachers’ major lesson is to learn how to react to magic thoughts wholly without anger.”  This is a strong statement from Jesus.  How much better can we witness for God if we do not fly off the handle so often and so easily?  Yes, there is a major lesson here for us.

4 – How to Handle Anger

I have found that leaving the room, if our significant others react angrily to us, is an effective way not to verbally attack in response.  I have not found that “counting to ten” works very well.  There are always things that are on the tip of the tongue, ready to be said.  But a moment of quiet in another room is effective.  I welcome your comments to this posting, giving your ideas for avoiding verbal (or physical) attack when anger appears in our environment.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would choose to react in a lovely fashion when something seems to set me off.  You would have it thus.  Of this I am sure.  Help me to listen to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, the encouragement not to lose my cool.

We need to think carefully about ways to react when we are struck by anger.  Attacking verbally, and certainly physically, are not good ideas.  We will alienate those closest to us, the ones with whom we have the holiest of relationships.

Be with us today as we walk through the day.  Help me to consider how to respond if I am provoked, and may that response be as gentle as You would wish, and that would be very gentle indeed.

Amen

Book Announcement

I’ve been asked to post an announcement about “The Fifth Disciple,” a new book by Cynthia Bove that’s a comparison of the Gospel of Thomas and A Course in Miracles. The two spiritual manuscripts, according to Christ Lenois of One Books,  parallel each other in surprising and insightful ways.
An excerpt from “The Fifth Disciple” is available at the following link:
The excerpt is called “The One Answer,” and it provides a solution to what the author calls our “one problem: the belief that we are separate from the Divine.”
We’d love to hear your comments about “The Fifth Disciple.”
–Celia Hales

Depression, Pain, Fear, Disaster Avoided

“If a magic thought arouses anger in any form, God’s teacher can be sure that he is strengthening his own belief in sin and has condemned himself.  He can be sure as well that he has asked for depression, pain, fear and disaster to come to him.  Let him remember, then, it is not this that he would teach, because it is not this that he would learn.  (M-17-1)”

Affirmation:  “no magic thoughts”

Reflections:

1 – Avoid Depression by Avoiding Anger

I would not know depression today.  If I am to avoid depression, I must avoid anger, because the two are linked in my mind.  Also pain, fear, and disaster come as a result of anger aroused by magic thoughts.  I would not place my faith in superstition, a form of magic thought.  I know that much that A Course in Miracles says would be seen by someone else, a non-student, as superstition.  But help me to know the difference.  My curriculum is A Course in Miracles.

2 – Peace and Harmony

May we gather together today in peace and harmony.  May we know that our true cure for all the ills of this world is found in relationships, holy relationships, with our brothers and sisters.  There is no other way, if we are to find our home in ACIM.  These holy relationships, salvaged from special relationships, will give us the peace and harmony that we seek.

3 – Special vs. Holy Relationships

How we do turn a special relationship into a holy one?  Intention has a lot to do with it (an interpretation, not stated in ACIM).  We must realize that our seeking for superficial qualities in a relationship is very, very likely to be our ego speaking to us.  God does not dwell in superficial qualities.  Beauty is fine, if the beauty is also internal.  The world itself, with its green and blue predominant, is beautiful in the extreme.  So God, we must believe, loves beauty.  But we must know that we will not even notice this beauty is our eyes are set on superficial qualities.  The material plane has much to tempt us.

4 – Magic in ACIM

I would set aside magic thoughts today, and by this I mean the magical thoughts that secular psychology also sets aside as being part of mental illness.  I do not mean the airy, attractive qualities of the definition of “magic” that is sometimes used.  There are these two different definitions, and the more benign one, the one that children believe in, is not to be deprecated.

5 – Keep God Central

Help me to have a good day.  I know that depression and pain will not be a part of this day if I keep God central to this day.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Today I have written my blog in a personal way, more personal than usual.  But I am actually also speaking to You.  I ask for You to assist me today to live a good day in Your sunshine.  I know that this kind of joyous living is strictly in line with Your will.

I would avoid depression and anger, and all the other negative adjectives that I have used in this blog posting.  Help me to choose again how I will react, knowing that the choice is within my power, with You helping me.  Help me to know that I can always choose the benign response and the loving response.  I don’t have to fly off the handle with rage.  I don’t often react that way, but my rage sometimes comes upon me suddenly and loudly, and I would cease this reaction entirely.  Help me to do so.

Be with all of my brothers and sisters today.  We are One, and it is to our good that You call us.

Amen

The Unhealed Healer

“By accepting healing he can give it.  If he doubts this, let him remember Who gave the gift and Who received it.  Thus is his doubt corrected.  (M-7.3)”

Affirmation:  “I herewith accept healing for myself, and thus for others.”

Reflections:

1 – Warning for Teachers of God

The “unhealed healer” is a false notion that teachers of God who themselves know illness can still function without any additional help.  But it is not ourselves who are effecting the healing; it is the Holy Spirit, according to A Course in Miracles.  If we recognize that we are an unhealed healer, we must turn our uncertainties over to God.  He would not have us to witness falsely.

2 – Few Are Always Healthy

Few of us are healthy at all times and in all circumstances.  This is the very human fact of our life in this world.  But we can be healed, either physically, emotionally, or both, when we turn our predicament over to a Higher Power.  This is the way home for us.  This is the way that we can be of service to others.

3 – Symptoms = Seen in an Illusory World

When we accept our own healing, even if symptoms persist, we are well on our way to being channels for healing in others.  The symptoms, as we have said repeatedly, are not anything other than illusions, seen in an illusory world.  The Holy Spirit gives the gift of healing; we are only channels, a body that our brothers and sisters can see, a voice that they can hear.  And we do not understand all that is going on with others.  That is why we need to remember that the Holy Spirit does know all of the circumstances.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would be healed myself, so that I might be a communication device for the Holy Spirit to heal others.  Being a device for communication is the only true use of the body.  And we are not to give the body undue importance in any way at all.

May I not be an “unhealed healer.”  That is a contradiction in terms; it is impossible.  May I not try to give to anybody else what only the Holy Spirit can deliver.  And may he heal my brothers and sisters today.

Amen.

Do Not Isolate Yourself

“Salvation is a collaborative venture.  It cannot be undertaken successfully by those who disengage themselves from the Sonship, because they are disengaging themselves from me.  (T69)”

Affirmation:  “Salvation is collaborative”

Reflections:

1 – Don’t Isolate Yourself

We are not meant to isolate ourselves in this world–even to study the Course.  We are meant to stay in the world ,and to minister to our brothers and sisters.  Our brothers and sisters are the Sonship.  (Note:  Scribed in the sixties, A Course in Miracles uses the same masculine terminology that the Bible does, but in the sixties, the masculine gender was recognized by everyone as including both genders, male and female.)

2 – Let Jesus In

Jesus, in this passage, indicates how important it is that he be a part of our lives.  This is his wish, but it is not mandatory.  Indeed, Helen and Bill were reluctant, when introducing the Course, to tell their listeners that their considered opinion was that the speaker was Jesus.  They knew how foreign this would sound to some hearers of the new message.

3 – Jesus as Elder Brother

Jesus can do more for us if we consider him a friend, an elder brother.  He speaks at one point of how we can imagine him holding our hand as we walk along, and he indicates that this will be no “idle fantasy.”  We cannot understand how this is possible, but we can take him at his word and see if it does not appear that he is with everyone who gives an insistent call.  He will come at the first “unequivocal” call (from the Text).

4 – The Consequences of Withdrawal

When we withdraw for too long, we also withdraw from Jesus.  And we cannot do that, because he and the Holy Spirit are our guides to better living.  He is the elder brother who catches us when we fall, and the Holy Spirit is the inner guide that leads us every step of the way–guidance.

5 – Salvation for Ourselves AND Others

Surely we do not want to disengage from Jesus.  So this passage has a warning for those of us who would seek our own salvation and not frequently enough think of the Sonship.  The two go hand-in-hand.

Prayer:

Dear Father,

When I am tempted to withdraw, help to remember my contribution to my brothers and sisters.  They need me, as I need them.  Salvation lies in our relationship.

May I learn from the Course with careful study, and then may I take that learning into the world.  This is the solution that will work for the world and for me.

Amen.

Vicious Dream Figures

“. . .[Y]ou would not react at all to figures in a dream you knew that you were dreaming.  Let them be as hateful and as vicious as they may, they could have no effect on you unless you failed to recognize it is your dream. (T588)”

Affirmation:  “I am living a dream.”

Reflections:

1 – An Insane World

This is the solution to individuals who, in our opinion, treat us badly.  It leads easily to forgiveness.  It suggests to me that we can call these lamentable actions “insanity,” and then let it go at that.  Over time, we may find that calling bad words or actions from another just “insanity” will help to initiate our own sanity, our own living in the real world.  At such times of forgiveness, when we are truly living ACIM, we recognize that there is really nothing to forgive.  But most of us have not reached this pinnacle yet.  We still need to have the gesture of forgiveness, as much for ourselves as for the other(s) involved.

2 – An Illusion

Of course, there are times that we will react first, and then, maybe much later, remember this passage from A Course in Miracles.  It is hard to recognize that the “reality” that we see all around us is not really real, especially if things happen in that reality that hurt us.

3 – Patience

May we have patience with ourselves when we fail.  There will be times when we do not handle an attack from another in the best way.  We will retaliate, only to recognize later that we have acted amiss.  Then we need to retrace our steps, and make amends.  But first we need to recognize our own frailty, and ask the Holy Spirit to guide our minds ever more carefully.

4 – Resist Attack

ACIM suggests the remedy in these two sentences in the passage, above.  May we incorporate this passage so firmly in our minds that we are able to resist striking out verbally (or any other way).

5 – It Is Our Own Dream

We are in a dream that we ourselves made up.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would remember today that I live in a dream, and so if someone attacks me for any reason, I can know that I had something to do with finding myself in that situation.  Attack can be forgiven as a call for help.  Help me to have the “happy dreams the Holy Spirit brings” today.  I would thank You repeatedly through the day for the gift of the Holy Spirit, Who will take me back home to You.

May I resist responding in attack.  Give me the forbearance to refrain from retaliating.  May my emotions remain calm, as well as joyous, and may Your presence keep me serene.

I love this life that You have immersed me in, and I thank You everyday for my many blessings.  Even though it is a dream, it is a good dream, and only with Awakening will I progress farther along the pathway to You.  May Awakening come sooner rather than later.

Amen.

Should I Repeat the Workbook?

ACIM Workbook Lesson 360 – for Monday, December 26, 2011

Affirmation:  “Peace be to me, the holy Son of God.
        Peace to my brother, who is one with me.
        Let all the world be blessed with peace through us.”

“In holiness were we created, and in holiness do we remain.  Your Son is like to You in perfect sinlessness.  And with this thought we gladly say ‘Amen.’  (WB484)”

Reflections:

1 – We Say “Amen”

This is the final lesson before five days of repetition.  Now we say “Amen.”  Jesus has guided us through a year meant to lead us home to God.  Have we made it?  Although many students/teachers of A Course in Miracles take the workbook lessons year after year, nowhere does Jesus proscribe this.  We can make our own choice in the matter.  We do not have to be tied to the Workbook if we are ready to move on.

2 – Turn to Our Guide

Let us ask the Holy Spirit to guide us in this decision.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Help me today to know if You would have me repeat the lessons of the Workbook in the upcoming year.  Many students/teachers just start over with a new year.  These individuals find the meditative aspects of the Workbook a good daily devotional.  Would I?  Help me to know today.  May my Guide, the Holy Spirit choose for me in this instance.  I do not know my own best interests.

I thank You for the closeness to You that the Workbook has brought to me this year.   Your felt Presence is a joy for me, a solace in times of trouble, a tranquil peace in more serene times.  May I ready myself today to move into a new year.  And I would spend that year also with You, whether or not my Guide directs me to repeat the Workbook.

Thank You for a good year.

Amen.