Our Healing

It is part of the worldview of A Course in Miracles that we are all One, and this One is God. Ideas (and we are all at base an idea) leave not their Source, and so we are created creatures, extensions of God Himself. Our mistake in wanting to be apart and separate can never satisfy, because we are meant both to have and to be everything. Our egos would want a little separate treasure, apart from what our brother has, but all this false belief can ever give us is isolation, loneliness, and fear. And God has protected Himself and us by seeing that this separation happens only in illusion, in dreams. And thus it does not happen in Reality at all.

This explanation can only be understood metaphorically in this world, because we are not yet back Home in God. But miracles can and do happen without a fuller understanding. We can be healed of our guilt over separation (and the illusory effects that it has brought) without sacrifice and without pain. All we need are open hands to accept the miracle.

Specifically, what we have to give up to be free of pain is fear. Jesus sums up how in one concise sentence, “Being wholly without attack, it [love] cannot be afraid.” (T-19.IV.A.10:7) Without attack, there is no fuel with the pain that it brings. The pain may, and frequently does, visit ourselves or others in the form of sickness. This, Jesus explains, is the faulty problem solving mechanism meant to illustrate the frailty of the ego’s home, the body.

In these few sentences is a summation of what Jesus tells us about the origin of pain. Is it understandable? Not at its introduction, because once ego defenses immediately activate to suggest a thousand reasons why this simple answer cannot be the whole of it. Give the ideas a while to prove their validity.

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Continue in Faith

“That resistance is fear. And fear is one of the energies out of alignment with the truth of the Kingdom. Therefore, fear not, but continue in faith. For I say unto you, what you will discover at the end of this pathway is perfect freedom, perfect power, perfect spaciousness, perfect joy and perfect peace of living—literally—in the Kingdom of Heaven.” (“The Way of the Heart,” WOM, Chapter 2, Page 22)

“. . .[F]ear not, but continue in faith.” Doesn’t this sound like the New Testament? Haven’t we been urged all of our lives to have faith? Faith without seeing, faith in knowing that our Creator is here for us?

Too many of us have spent large volumes of time in fears and anxieties. I know that I have. Anxieties have dogged my pathway all of my life, even as a fretful child trying to make good grades in high school. Now I am seeking to walk a better way, a way free of anxieties and saturated with faith. Faith is the “evidence of things not seen,” and in The Way of Mastery platform, we are asked to believe many things that might, at first glance, cause us concern.

Do we really want to be skeptical? What has skepticism ever got us? If we open our minds ever so slightly, we will see a new day dawning, a new world coming up in that dawn. The end of the pathway is the enlightenment (Awakening, Christ-consciousness) that Jesus wishes for all of us. He wants a world full of Christed beings.

And this can be so. Our subconscious will be healed as we let Jesus’s words wash over us. “[P]erfect freedom, perfect power, perfect spaciousness, perfect joy and perfect peace.” Yes! These can be ours. The spaciousness means that we empty ourselves of anything but God’s will and His way, so that He can fill us with that which will never make us hunger and thirst again.

Yes! The Way of Mastery (the Christ-Mind Trilogy) takes us by the hand and leads us to a brighter future. Would we still resist?

Einstein: “Is the Universe Friendly?”

“Again I tell you that when you are afraid, be still and know that God is real and you are His beloved Son in whom He is well pleased. Do not let your ego dispute this, because the ego cannot know what is as far beyond its reach as you are. God is not the author of fear. You are. You have willed, therefore, to create unlike Him, and have made fear for yourself.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-4.II.18:1-5)

Yes, we made fear. What other emotion were possible when we thought that we were a teeny point in the universe, cut off from all the rest? Would that not be reason enough to be afraid?

Know that this mirage is just that—an illusion made of nothing. When we know that we are merged with the cosmos, melted together in love, we will know that we are not and have never been alone, solitary creatures that had to make it on our own. We have a Guide, the Holy Spirit, Who will metaphorically take us by the hand and lead us back from whence we came. He will take us into heaven, when the time is ripe. And God Himself will transform us, when we are ready, by something called the “Awakening.” When this transformation happens, we will know that whether the time for us on earth is short or long, we are accepted and beloved children of God who can know bliss anywhere. Because God is everywhere.

Drop the ego, and when we do this, we will know far more than beforehand. We will know that fear is easily avoided in a universe that is cooperative, with all beings sharing in the glorious Light of the Creator. We live in a friendly universe, what Einstein queried: “Do we live in a friendly universe?”.

This query is one of the most important, if not the most important, queries we could ever have.

When we can certainly answer in the affirmative, our worries are behind us.

Jesus: “I Have Made Every Effort to Teach You Entirely without Fear”

“The role of a teacher, properly conceived, is one of leading himself and others out of the desert. The value of this role can hardly be underestimated, if only because it was one to which I very gladly dedicated my own life. I have repeatedly asked my pupils to follow me. This means that, to be effective teachers, they must interpret teaching as I do. I have made every effort to teach you entirely without fear. If you do not listen, you will be unable to avoid the very obvious error of perceiving teaching as a threat.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-3.IX.6:1-6)

When we perceive teaching as a threat, we are living in fear. This is the exact opposite of what Jesus hopes for us, the exact opposite of what he intends. His words, when considered rightly, envelop us in a sense of love. We do not have to “accept” him for this to be true, but we do need to open our mind and open our heart, at least ever so slightly. When we live in harmony with love, we appreciate the truth in teaching, and we can become good teachers ourselves. No other way, no way other than love, can do this for us.

We are still making our way tentatively out of fear. There will be missteps, of course, but the way is still upward, toward love, away from fear. We are blessed by the channeled writings of Jesus. When we reflect on how we accept these teachings, we will realize that his love for us has been palpable. The love has drawn us in. And there is no better way to set our foot on the pathway back to God than to realize that a loving brother is leading us by the hand.

Leaving Fear Behind

“Intrapersonal conflict arises from the same basis as interpersonal. One part of the psyche perceives another part as on a different level and does not understand it. This makes the parts strangers to each other, without recognition. This is the essence of the fear-prone condition, in which attack is always possible. You have every reason to feel anxious as you perceive yourself. This is why you cannot escape from fear until you know that you did not and cannot create yourself. You can never make this misperception valid, and when you at last perceive clearly, you will be glad you can’t. Your creation is beyond variance by your own errors, and this is why you must eventually choose to heal the separation.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-3.VI.6:1-8)

We cannot damn ourselves, though that is exactly what we are about when we let the ego rule. God created reality for His children with Love at the helm. When love is in force, we know that we can ascend to great heights, letting God’s action in us allow the transformation that we all need.

“Your creation is beyond variance by your own errors, and this is why you must eventually choose to heal the separation.” Yes! We “make” only illusions, for God’s creation is protected. True reality is harmony, peace, joy, lightheartedness—all the attributes of intangible factors that are hidden, just beyond the reach of illusions of materiality in which we find ourselves.

We have lived with anxieties for eons, for this is the outcome of the fear that is the opposite of love. Is there not a better way? We know that there is, but now we have become so caught in our fear that we don’t know how to extricate ourselves. This is why we need the guidance of the Holy Spirit, for He is a Spirit Who can see that God’s way becomes understandable to us. He shows us how to extricate ourselves from fear/anxieties. As we heal each part of the subconscious by bringing it up to the Light, we are made new. We are remade in the image of God, full of illusion no longer.

It has been a long and arduous battle of the ego. Now, we hope, that battleground is silent, and weapons of destruction are gone. We know, for in our seeking, the ways of God have been made plain to us. Jesus’ contribution in his channeled writings have hit the mark.

Now we are being guided, step by step, into the Awakening that will eventually become widespread on this earth.

Seek to Master Love, Not Fear

“We began this section with an attempt to correct the fundamental human error that fear can be mastered. The correction was that only love can be mastered. Even if you are ready for revelation, though, that does not mean that you have in any way mastered that form of communication. Mastery of love necessarily involves a much more complete confidence in the ability than you have as yet attained. Readiness, however, is at least an indication that you believe this is possible. This is only the beginning of confidence. In case this be misunderstood as a statement that an enormous amount of time will be necessary between readiness and mastery, I would again remind you that time and space are under my control.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.XII.10:1-7)

Yes, time and space are under Jesus’ control, and here he is trying to get us to do what seems impossible to us—to master love. We often attempt to do the reverse, master fear. We are in pain when we experience anxiety, and we just want to get rid of the feeling. But we are limited in what we can do until we turn our bodies and souls over to love. Then, when love is attained, and even mastered, our fears drop away. It is just that simple.

I have long been prone to anxieties; they have dogged my every step through this life. But when I am immersed in love, feeling love with every bone in my body, I notice that there is no trace of fear/anxieties. And this is what Jesus is talking about. We master fear by first mastering love.

Of course, we don’t stay in a cloud of love all the time. This world drags us back. But as often as we retreat from love, and then feel fear, we can try again, take another step in a better direction. We move forward and retreat throughout our lives. Only in Awakening are the vicissitudes altered. Then we have smoother sailing.

So: Seek to master love, not fear. The benefits are stupendous. The way opens to God Himself, for God is but Love.

How to Drop Fear

“No one as yet has fully recognized either the therapeutic value of fear or the only way in which it can truly be ended. When you miscreate, you are in pain. The cause and effect principle here is temporarily a real expeditor. Actually, Cause is a term properly belonging to God, and Effect, which should also be capitalized, is His Sonship. This entails a set of cause and effect relationships which are totally different from those which humanity introduced into the miscreation.

“The fundamental opponents in the real basic conflict are creation and miscreation. All fear is implicit in the second, just as all love is inherent in the first. Because of this difference, the basic conflict is one between love and fear.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.XI.9:1-5 and 10:1-3)

Jesus talks about love and fear in a new way in this passage, a way that explains that our own miscreations in this world have made our fear. When we get on the beam with him, we won’t be miscreating any longer. And so there is no reason for fear. What a glorious promise!

Our next step is to ask the omniscient Jesus how to create anew, how to drop the miscreations that have caused us such grief. If there is something particular in our life that is making us miserable, there is our opening. There is a miscreation, for nothing God has created, or which we have truly “created” (as opposed to “made”) can harm us.

We need help. We must not be too proud to ask for it. Jesus, our teacher, is ever near to guide and direct. And his way works.

Let love overshadow us today, let us create well, and then fear will drop from sight.

Move Easily through Life

“You who complain about fear still persist in producing it most of the time. I told you in the last section that you cannot ask me to release you from it, because I know it does not exist. You don’t. If I merely intervened between your thoughts and their results, I would be tampering with a basic law of cause and effect, in fact the most fundamental one there is in this world. I would hardly help you if I depreciated the power of your own thinking. This would be in direct opposition to the purpose of this course.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.X.8:1-6)

We chafe at these words of Jesus. If a tranquilizer can calm us, if this magic can calm us, then why, really, does Jesus not intervene and give us a miracle?
He wants us, he says elsewhere, to get his help in the conditions that have brought the fear about. This makes for real change, not a bandaid that cannot last any more than a tranquilizer can. These conditions are always a willingness to remain separate, and this is our problem. Unless and until we give up our illusory separation from God as a bad idea, we will continue to experience turmoil. Pain will cause us to reconsider, and sometimes this pain will escalate into suffering.

There is a better way. Jesus tells us in A Course in Miracles. It is better to learn through rewards, because rewards are more lasting than the expedient of pain/suffering. What reward would lead us to see that separation is not the way? A simple choice, taken one time and then repeated, will let us realize that we are much more joyous without our stubborn will to go our own way. When we relax into the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we know a flow in our minutes, hours, days, that is like the difference between day and night—prior to the Holy Spirit, and after we welcome Him into our life. We know real happiness for possibly the first time. It then becomes up to us to sustain this link to Wholeness, for only the Holy Spirit knows the way.

So: Do ourselves a favor, and choose happiness by the only way it will come. Get help in the conditions that have caused fear, and these conditions are always a choice to remain separate. We don’t do well “separate.” Our merger with God, in intent and purpose, is the only sure way to joy that we will ever know.

Way Out of Fear

“Whenever you are afraid, it is a sure sign that you have allowed your mind to miscreate; that is, you have not allowed me to guide it. It is pointless to believe that controlling the outcome of misthought can result in real healing. When you are fearful, you have willed wrongly. This is why you feel you are responsible for it. You must change your mind, not your behavior, and this is a matter of will. You do not need guidance except at the mind level. Correction belongs only at the level where causation is possible. The term does not really mean anything at the symptom level, where it cannot work.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.IX.4:1-8)

Jesus knows that we have not given up fear, that we still have misthought, and we feel the results, in pain often. He emphasizes that a change of mind is far more important, and pivotal, than a change in behavior. A change in behavior will happen when we have changed our mind, then and only then.

He wants us to correct our thinking, and then we will see an improvement in our behavior. It seems that he is not so much concerned with the outcome of misthought as he is with the problem of the mind itself. He wants us to think aright.

A Course of Love, channeled later, emphasizes that we change our mind when we listen to our heart—a heart that has always known what to think, say, and do. Our heart does not need any teaching, but our mind, so long egoic, has still patterns of the ego lingering. And so we need a sounder basis for making decisions, and that sounder basis is our heart.

Everyone knows what the heart means without a tedious telling. Our heart will inform our mind, which will inform our behavior. Then we will really be healed.

Escape from Fear

“All fear is ultimately reducible to the basic misperception that you have the ability to usurp the power of God. It is again emphasized that you neither can nor have been able to do this. In this statement lies the real justification for your escape from fear. This is brought about by your acceptance of the Atonement, which places you in a position to realize that your own errors never really occurred.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.II.16:1-4)

God’s world is still in His hands. We can’t change ultimate reality; we just fall into illusion. It is this that will save us. It is this that will save us from the debilitating experience of fear.

When we accept the Atonement, the place of Christ in history, the rapprochement of man/woman and God, then we have by-passed the separation forever. We have also eliminated the ego from our way of thinking. Of course, all of this is easier said than done. Often, the Atonement is felt over years, years in which we slowly come to see that God’s will and ours are actually identical. We stop trying to play God ourselves. We acknowledge that we did not create ourselves, something the ego wanted to have us believe.

We have been living in illusion. In the Atonement, we may still find illusion clinging to our feet, but we have nevertheless made progress. True reality, the intangible benefits of peace, love, joy, contentment, harmony—will become a tangible, viable result of healing the separation. True reality offers us what an illusory separation never did: peace of mind and, as A Course of Love says, a heart that informs our living.

Love and Fear

“In sorting out the false from the true, the miracle proceeds along these lines:

“Perfect love casts out fear.

“If fear exists, then there is not perfect love.

“But

“Only perfect love really exists.

“Therefore, if there is fear, it produces a state which does not exist.

“Believe this and you will be free.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.50.2:3-8)

This quotation is a favorite part of A Course in Miracles for its students and teachers. Of course, saying that we love, and that we want to be free of fear, is easier than having it done for us. But it can be done for us, by the Holy Spirit. And by God, when He reaches down and lifts us up to Awakening.

In the meantime, for us lowly mortals, we know that we need to love more completely to get line for these great blessings. Any attack will move us farther away from our goal, and attack/anger are the result of fear. When we don’t have stress/fear, we may proceed in a harmonious way through our days.

But life is life, and things happen, prompting us to leave our good intentions for something that doesn’t work at all. Keep in mind that we think awry when we fear and stress, and that we are on the beam when we love. And the more completely we love, the better off we can be.

Our Natural State Is One of Pure Love

“In this time of Christ, this time of direct revelation and direct sharing, the probable future you imagine, envision, desire, will be what you create. This is the power of the devotion of the observant. A shared vision of unity and a return of all to the state natural to all is what I ask you to imagine, envision and desire.” (ACOL, T4:6.4)

We are in a new time now, the time of Christ. And Jesus is asking us here, in A Course of Love, to envision that all of us will return to our natural state, a state of love rather than fear, a state of Christ-consciousness. The ego was never a natural state for us, and that is why, regardless of what we did, we were in the process of eliminating it from our being, our psyche. The ego was constantly being undone, or who would choose fear if we knew how to avoid it? We choose to experience anxieties when we are afraid of what the present or future will hold, and this “being afraid” is the very fear that Jesus would eradicate. We experience what we, in the depth of our being, want to experience. We may sometimes choose fear out of ignorance and insanity, but there is a way out, and it is to turn to love, love of God, love of our very being, love of others.

We turn from fear when we choose forgiveness, recognizing that others have been acting in innocence borne of insanity as well. And forgiveness is the opposite of judgment. So when we forgive, we are setting aside that second bug-a-boo that Jesus would have us eliminate from our thoughts and evaluations. He would have us set judgment aside, and the best way to do that is to forgive. Everyone deserves forgiveness, for everyone has been doing the best that he/she knows to do, given the state of their knowledge of what’s right.

Why would we ever choose fear and judgment unless we didn’t know any better? Yes, patterns of past ignorance do still pervade our minds, and so what we think does make a difference here. Patterns of fearful thoughts may still assail us, and when this happens, we need to get quiet and go within, pray, spend time in communion with God. Quiet reading can also help. And often judgment comes when we are angry with someone, but have not acknowledged that anger. We sometimes think that a judgment can keep us from fear, if the words or actions of another have indeed seemed to cause fear in us, and we decide that rejecting that person, his words and actions, can save us. This is thinking that is somewhat amiss, because we never benefit very long from rejecting another. Rejection is the opposite of love, and God would have us love our brothers and sisters.

If we know that fears and judgments assail us at certain times, that doesn’t mean that the ego has returned, or that a new ego has formed. We have been in the habit of holding to fears and judgments, and even though we have now turned aside from both, the habit persists from deep within us, and so these patterns of the ego also need to be left behind. We are creating our reality, and when we ask for God’s help in creating better images, His help will be forthcoming. Patterns of the ego will be left behind; sometimes it just takes a little time, and this calls for patience on our part.

Prayer

Be with me today and every day. May I choose love, and in that choice may my fears and judgments simply drop away. I would choose love to eradicate fear, and I would choose forgiveness to eradicate judgment. All of this is within my power, especially now in the time of Christ.

May this day offer me a glimpse of enlightenment. I know that when I get very calm, I see such a glimpse, sometimes passing very quickly. Stay and dwell with me a while. I know that I ask for what You would will for me.

Amen.

End Fear and Begin Miracles

“From time immemorial, fear has been associated with God. This was the thinking I came to reverse. While I succeeded in revealing a God of love, this revelation has not been reconciled with your experience here. This is what we will now seek to do by putting an end to fear and ushering in, with this ending, the beginning of a time of miracles.” (ACOL, T1:4.27)

Fear is a precondition for suffering, and so when we remove the fear, we will then remove the suffering. And we can have pain, part of the human condition, without suffering, because much of what we endure is emotional turmoil. Any physical pain becomes lessened when we get out minds in league with God, with the Self deep within, in the perfect calm and quiet of Awakening. And we can have these glimpses often, even when in pain.

Jesus did show us a God of love, and we often forget that this was not the Israelites’ experience of God. They believed that He was a God Who had to be mollified by good deeds and sacrifices. They would not have understood “love” as the prime attribute of their God. But Jesus changed all this.

We have not experienced the change, though! This is the irony, what Jesus is working now to change. Something, in a perfect world, a perfect creation, has gone wrong. And suffering is that thing. If we saw love in everything, we would have forsaken suffering; and the reverse is true as well, if we forsake suffering, we will see love everywhere.

How exactly can we bring this about, the end of suffering, the all-encompassing gift of love? We need just to call on the deeper Self, to be ourselves, or, as Jesus puts it, to “be who we are.” This is actually being ourselves, and this is folk knowledge in our culture from a long way back. If we experience pain, it most definitely does not have to turn into suffering, regardless of how bad it may be. It is the emotional turmoil that renders us frantic. It is the emotional pain that is our real enemy (an interpretation, not stated in ACOL).

Even though we probably believe what Jesus said from 2,000 years ago, we have not experienced that truth of love being everything. Not in our personal experience. We can change this. And we must change this, sooner rather than later, if we are to have inner peace. When we give up the highs and lows, the drama, we will be happy. And not until.

Dear Father/Mother,

May I spend my day in calm and quiet, for this will bring me happiness. I know that when I have conquered my egoic need for drama, I will be alright. I will not turn into an uninteresting person, though some may find me less engaging. This does not matter. Ordinary people living extraordinary lives will turn others to God, to wholeheartedness, to union with the Self, and the Christ-consciousness. Let me do my part today.

Thank You for helping.

Why Do We Fear to Choose Miracles?

“See you not the choices made in each of these scenarios and the reasoning or lack of reasoning behind them? You are not worthy. You are not saintly, godlike or even holy. You might choose incorrectly. You might invoke retribution. You might be selfish. You might be proved to have no faith. You might succumb to thoughts of grandeur.

“In short, you are too afraid, for a variety of reasons, to try. In short, you are not willing and have many reasons for not being willing. What we have done here is bring your fears to light, fears that you did not even realize you held so closely or would be so terrified to let go.” (ACOL, T1:3.24 – 3.25)

These are the reasons that Jesus has explained that we are afraid of choosing a miracle. He has brought us along a long pathway to figure out why we have such fears. He has not asked us to choose something specific, a specific miracle, though we think at first that he has asked this. He is trying to move us into the art of thought, the miracle-mindedness that is necessary to live well with the Self in charge. This Self is our inner Christ Self, and this Self becomes available when we live with mind and heart united, a mind free of the ego, a heart living in love.

We have been afraid of many things in our lives, not only the fact of choosing a miracle that will increase our faith in miracles and miracle-minded living. Jesus knows of our fears, but he also knows that until we release these fears of our own free will, we will remain trapped. We need to release fear and judgment to have a chance at Christ-consciousness. And we are led to believe in A Course of Love that this is God’s wish for us as well. His Being, deep inside us, will direct us. And we will not be afraid any longer.

The list, above, given for fear of miracles would work for many other fears as well. The tenets of ACOL are broadly based and fit any number of scenarios. Now I would relinquish these fears as I go about my business today. When I am tempted to be fearful, I will simply ask for the miracle of love to overtake me.

And then I will rest in peace.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would leave both fear and judgment behind today. Judgment seems more in my power to relinquish, because fear sometimes just seems to take me over, unbidden. But I am colluding with this fear, or it would not arise. And I would cease colluding with fear. And with judgment. These are the two aspects of life in this world that I would relinquish today.

Be with me, and please give me a good day, a day with good energy to be up and about Your way and the way of salvation.

Thank You.

Amen.

Wisdom Discounts Fear-Based Living

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

We need to base our living on a better mind than the ego-mind; we all know this. And the Self knows best, the best that is part of God. This inner Christ is there to help us live by wisdom that does not seem to be entirely our own. This belief is based on the fact that the ego has never led well; we have stumbled time and again when listening to its counsel.

Now there is a better way: living in love with the Self guiding us as to our next step. We don’t live in fear when we are living in love; they are diametrically opposed to each other. And in A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, we have learned why fear-based living is a mirage. We think it saves us from something worse, from living without judgment. But the judgment and fear are what have caused us to live inferior lives.

The ego is the insane portion of our mind that knows that its days are numbered, and so the ego is desperate, trying to convince us that our survival depends on keeping it (the ego) strong. This is wrong, and we know this. But in our weaker moments we give in to fear, and we don’t live from love, and so the whole house of cards seems to fall down around us.

We know better than this. We have no good reasons for appealing to fear to save us. Fear cannot save us, not in the least. And when we realize that the love that we sense all around us is genuine, we will sustain a better way of life. Things will get easier. Our hearts won’t beat as fast in pain. We will live with our heads high, but not in pride. We will live with our heads up, knowing that we are listening to a guidance from our inner Self that is true and good.

And when we listen to that inner Christ, we are healed.

Dear Father/Mother,

Help me to live peaceably in this world, without the ego pulling at my mind to let it (the ego) reign. I would not live with the ego in the ascendancy. I would live from love, knowing that in this decision, all future decisions are made easy.

Be with me today, drawing out the peace that is deep within me. Help me to know when to act, when to speak—and when not to do either. The peace that You give me is the only real peace in this world, the only real peace in the only true reality.

I would listen to my inner Self today, with a smooth heartbeat, slow and easy. Fear has no place in me when I have made this decision.

Amen.

Love & Fear Contrasted

“This cooperation is natural when fear has been rejected. You have long embraced fear and rejected love. Now the reverse is true. This reversal of truth has changed the nature of your universe and the laws by which it operates. The laws of fear were laws of struggle, limits, danger, and competitiveness. The laws of love are laws of peace, abundance, safety, and cooperation. Your actions and the results of your actions in a universe of love will naturally be different from your actions and the results of your actions in a universe of fear. You set the laws of the universe when you chose fear. The laws of the universe of love are God-given.” (ACOL, C:20.31)

Nobody, even those who reject religion, would believe that to live in fear is preferable to living in love. Even the most agnostic or atheistic among us want significant others to love unconditionally. And there must be a reason for this. Why do we need love so much? Why have we wandered around, alone and lonely, in a world that scared us so, scared us in our fear?

We didn’t know that there was a better way to live, at least not for many years. We thought that anxieties about our doings actually helped us to achieve more, and achieve better. We were lost in a competitive world where scarcity seemed the norm. The fact that sharing might give everyone enough, and more than enough, was discounted.

We can’t blame our families, because they do were products of a fear-ridden environment. They learned from their parents, as we learned from them. And to be protected in an unsafe world, it seemed that holding certain fear-ridden ideas would offer this protection. We made the world that we experienced, and this world was indeed fear-ridden.

Now we come to a better knowledge. And we aren’t asked to take this on faith, without any proof. We just need to experiment a little with what all of us knew from the beginning, that we wanted (and needed) love to thrive. We might not have known the words to express this when we were children, but as we grew into the teen years, we knew it mightily, as peer pressure exerted its influence upon our behavior.

Don’t let the truth that love is the way for now sound trite. All religions have stressed love, but few have been able to turn their adherents from their fear-based thinking. Perhaps we are ready now, in this age of Christ. Perhaps things are a little better now. Jesus says that A Course in Miracles has made a difference in our world, and certainly the ACIM concepts have made their way into many books that never cite their sources. With A Course of Love, we are taken a step farther, not only to relinquish the ego (as ACIM counseled), but to establish a new identity, based in mind and heart together.

The heart will always speak for love. And our doubts that there is something superior in fortifying ourselves with protection by fear can be cast aside forever.

Prayer

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank you for the warmth that my heart feels today. Thank You for A Course of Love. May the recurrent anxieties that dogged my steps previously just fall away as I catch glimpses of what it means to feel mellow and justified in Your sight. I drop the ego from my world view. And with a genuine humility I seek to know Your ways.

Be with me as I walk in the pathway that is set before me. If fear seems to be a factor in my walk, hold my hand and remind me that You are always with me. I am a part of You, and, as such, I can draw on my inner Self at any time, draw on my inner Self to feel and experience love.

Amen.

A Forgiven World Eliminates Judgment & Overcomes Fear with Love

“Only your heart can lead you to the forgiveness that must overcome judgment. A forgiven world is a world whose foundation has changed from fear to love. Only from this world can your special function be fulfilled and bring the light to those who still live in darkness.” (ACOL, C:16.8)

This quotation, once again in A Course of Love, emphasizes the heart and its primacy in our decision-making. Our heart will lead us to overcome judgment by forgiveness—and judgment is one of the two main impediments to a speedy Awakening (the other impediment is fear). Heretofore we have not known how to overcome judgment; we may have felt stymied in wishing to get over judgment, but not knowing how.

Now we do know. We can practice forgiveness of ourselves, others, God Himself, and with this gesture of goodwill, we will know peace. This peace is a way that we move from fear to love. Nobody who is peaceful experiences abject fear. And we would be loving, without fear, at all times—if that is humanly possible. And Jesus is telling us that this change is possible, even probable.

The foundation of the world can change from fear to love; this is what a forgiven world constitutes.

So here we see two ways that we can move closer to Christ-consciousness or Awakening. We can forgive, and this will eliminate judgment; and when we have forgiven, we will automatically move from a world dominated by fear to one embraced by love.

This passage is very important, for the primary impetus behind the curriculum of A Course of Love is to move us to the elevated Self of form in this world, physical manifestation in this world while living enlightenment (Christ-consciousness or Awakening. Our physical Selves, we are told, are actually One with each other and with God. And we can live perfectly satisfactory lives on this earth if we embody the principles that Jesus is encouraging. We will move into Christ-consciousness soon. We will not have to wait long. And once this state is maintained, and then sustained, we will be seeing things differently. Our inner vision will change everything.

Prayer

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank You for this information, from Jesus, about how to move beyond judgment. By forgiveness. May I forgive any and every one whom I encounter today, even if I am not aware, at the time, that I am judging them.

And may I look on a forgiven world with fear gone, only love remaining.

This information is vital to my well-being. Thank You again.

All of us need to know specifically how to move into the state of mind and heart that You want for us, and this is the elevated Self of form who is experiencing Christ-consciousness. I ask for this movement to occur within me sooner rather than later.

And I ask this for all my readers as well.

Amen.

The Key: Love Freely & without Fear

“You who do not know how to trade your separated state for that of union have still done so when you have loved freely and without fear. In this state your memory returns to you of who you are, and you are innocent and joyous and one with love itself. That this memory does not last, and these feelings seem unsustainable, is the result only of that which does discard and replace.” (C:14.28)

This is the key! We have union of mind and heart when we have “loved freely and without fear”! And this union of mind and heart leads to true vision, true reality. At such times we are ego-free. Our memory has returned to us, the memory that we buried deep within eons ago, and left to rot. It did not rot, but now has been restored to us with all its brilliance.

This truly is the secret kept from nobody but ourselves: love, loving freely and without fear. We have long realized from reading A Course of Love that fear and judgment are all that hold us back from Christ-consciousness. And love leads us to Christ-consciousness. But we have not known how to apply love, and we may not fully understand now. But we all have moments of loving freely and without fear, and these moments lead to a glimpse of Awakening.

That these moments do not merge and offer us sustainability of Christ-consciousness is only because of “that which does discard and replace,” and that comprises the remnants of egoic consciousness. Though Jesus tells us later on that the ego is gone from us, it is not gone early in our reading. It will be gone when we are able to turn from fear and judgment, and much of that is within our power to alter.

So this is the key that has been missed until now. Think back to the moments when love has embraced us. Did we not feel that God was in His heaven and all was right with the world? That is a glimpse of Awakening, a powerful glimpse, and it behooves us to entice love into our illusion. Then the illusion will gradually fall away, and we will be living true reality. At such times, our mood will improve dramatically. This is the sign that we are living truly in a new reality. Though this heightened mood may not last, it is a harbinger of what is ahead for us. And having the experience gives us clues about what to do to entice the experience again later.

Ultimately, the clues lead to sustenance of the mood. And who among us would not want a happier mood to accompany all our days?

Love freely and without fear. We CAN do this; we have done it. Just expand those moments into hours, and then into days. And sustenance of Christ-consciousness will overwhelm us sooner rather than later.

Make a Determination to End Fear

“Only fear breeds the feelings of lack that stand with it, the cornerstone of the foundation of your separate world. You do not realize that you have created a universe for yourself, a universe that you are required to main¬tain, and that without your effort would dissolve.” (ACOL, C:14.16)

We need to just let “our” universe dissolve, for it is a universe of illusion that seeks to remain separate from our God. We know by now that this has never worked, can never work. When we let God heal the separation, we will still live in this physical universe (if we choose), but the universe that we look out upon will be very different. With separation from God healed, we will be One with Him, one with each other, one with nature.

Fear (and judgment) are the great dividers as we seek to return to Oneness. How do we eliminate fear? How do we realize that we actually lack for nothing in a world that is no longer separate from God, even in illusion?

The only emotion stronger than fear is love, and when we intend, mightily, to love our God, each other, ourselves, and our physical world, we are putting ourselves on the right track. Often it is insecurity that breeds fear. We are insecure with each other, fearing that we won’t even be accepted, much less loved. And this leads directly to a lack of love for others, for we become self-centered in our interactions. And others pick up on this, and are turned off.

When we make a determination to feel love, often the determination will precede the emotion. The determination will lead us into the emotion of love. And our mood will rise dramatically. And with this elevation of mood, our insecurity in the company of others will dissipate, for our self-confidence will rise.

These dynamics work, but they don’t work well if we are trying to use ego to set in motion the dynamics. We need to make a determination also that we will do nothing that smacks of egotism, that we will not seek to raise our worth in our own eyes nor the eyes of others. We will simply be ourselves, regardless of the company. If we can manage it, this choice is eminently freeing. And it leads directly to a feeling of love and caring for those with whom we are dealing.

Choose to eliminate fear. Of course, in our limitations this won’t work all the time and it won’t work perfectly. But it is a start. And when transformation comes (for transformation comes after fear and judgment have ceased), the change will be immediately evident to ourselves. Some others will see and notice, but many will not.

But the way in which we survey the world will undergo a sea change. And because nothing will ever be the same again, we will maintain, and then sustain, Christ-consciousness.

Now this is a goal worth having.

Think “Love” when Tempted by Fears & Judgment

“Joined minds cannot think separately and have no hidden thoughts. They are, in fact, not minds in the plural at all, but all-one-mind. What this Course is saying is that at some point that does not exist in time, God’s son made the choice for separation. Whether God’s son had one form or many at that time matters not, for one form or many, there was still one mind, the mind of God’s son joined in unity with that of his Father. Many of you have been taught this mystery of faith. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are One.” (ACOL, C:12.15)

This quotation is an explanation of the truth of the Trinity, traditional Christian doctrine indeed. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are One. Our mind was One mind when joined with the Father prior to separation. We were “all-one-mind.”

Now we are asking to return to that unity with God, our minds One with His. It is not hard, but certain responsibilities are necessary first. We must leave behind our fears and our judgments, and for those of still trapped in the separation, this injunction may sound impossible to do. How would we proceed? How would we leave fear and judgment behind, when it has been such a part of the egoic mind?

The single Answer is that we allow ourselves to be enthralled with Love, the Love of God, the Father. When tempted (for it IS a temptation) to lapse into a lower state of mind, we think “love,” and then this affirmation moves us away from sinking thoughts into something better.

When we allow our Self to merge once again with God, and when our conscious mind is enthralled with the Self, we will know a new way of being. We will be who we are, which is a risen Self that dips into egotism not at all. We will be Home, finally.

Consciously think “love” when tempted to judge, when tempted to let fear reign once again. Maybe this thought will not always save us, but it will save us often enough that we will know that we are on the right track. The track moving toward Christ-consciousness.

Fear Blocks the Vision of Our Heart

“This need not be, for you are not separate! The relationships you seek to end your loneliness can do so if you but learn to see relationship differently. As with all your problems in perception, fear is what blocks the vision of your heart, the light the Christ in you would shine upon the darkness.” (ACOL, C:9.18)

We only think that we are separate from other people. This has been what the ego has taught us, as it also taught us that we must be competitive for limited resources. The resources are not limited! There is enough to go around if we wisely allocate, something that in this difficult world we often don’t do at all. Thinking that we are separate has fueled the competition in which we normally find ourselves embroiled. And believing that we need to beat out the other guy is just plain insanity masquerading as the truth.

When we see relationship differently, we cooperate rather than compete. And A Course of Love says that much indeed is relationship, that relationship is how we know God, even. We cooperate with God, of course, if we are attuned to Him. And, as a part of Him, it behooves us to go ahead and cooperate, not shrivel in fear.

We often don’t do all that we ought to do with our days because of our neurosis, a neurosis that is often fueled by fear. If we are to establish a new identity while reading ACOL, we need to understand that egoic fear has no place in our developing identity. We need to realize that we indeed have nothing to fear at all. Jesus says in The Way of Mastery that the FDR quotation, “The only thing that we have to fear in fear itself,” is 98 percent right. We might come to understand that we don’t even have to fear, fear. It is a non-issue when our new identity has been thoroughly established, a condition that Christ-consciousness will bring upon us—securing our invulnerability for all time.

We aren’t to test out our invulnerability though in a way that would tempt fate. We are not about “proving” anything. But we are seeing the vision in our heart, the vision that fear would block.

Ask to have fear removed today. Ask to see clearly this new vision of which Jesus so eloquently speaks. We may not get a positive Answer all at once, but we are preparing the way for the end of fear. And the coming of a new vision that will enhance our contribution in this world.

Eliminating Fear from Our Lives

“Fear always lies one step beneath the surface of a situation because it lies one step beneath the surface of your self. Peel back the first level of what your eyes allow you to observe and you will find fear lurking there.” (ACOL, C:9.15)

This passage indicates that we are controlled by fear. This is the situation when we are living in, or just emerging from, an egoic present. We need to walk further along to escape from the fear, because the fear lurks just below the surface of our little self, the self that has blessed the ego.

Our situations seem fearful because we are fearful. How could it be otherwise? Our projections make our perceptions, as A Course in Miracles tells us. Now A Course of Love uses other words to say the same thing. We will make very little progress as long as we don’t face, then accept the fear, float past it, and then let time pass as we walk yet further along our paths. These tips come from a book on anxiety disorder by Claire Weekes.

The nerves of our physical bodies have become sensitized to fear. The stress has gotten to us, and we cannot be at peace for very long at all. We know what to do, but we conveniently forget. This will never do for long.

We can use our fear to come closer to God. If we are anxious, we are likely to pray more often for a surcease to our anxiety. And we may try meditation as a way to calm our minds.

These practical ways do help, but the most efficacious is to listen to the heart, as encouraged in A Course of Love. What is the fear lurking underneath the anxieties? What in our lives need to be changed in order to walk a smooth pathway?

Test out your own solutions to fear and anxiety. Talking to a sympathetic person can help, but we need ultimately to depend on the Self within to be let loose from bondage by the egoic, little self. Until we let the inner Christ Self take over and run our lives, year in and year out, we will remain one short step from our fears.

Recognize Love, and Fear Will Vanish

“All fear ends when proof of your existence is established. All fear is based on your inability to recognize love and thus who you are and who God is. How could you not have been fearful with doubt as powerful as this? How can you not rejoice when doubt is gone and love fills all the space that doubt once occupied? No shadows linger when doubt is gone. Nothing stands between the child of God and the child’s own Source. There remain no clouds to block the sun, and night gives way to day.” (ACOL, C:4.5)

When we don’t recognize love, we don’t recognize our Self and thus we don’t recognize God. This is bound to make us fearful, is it not? We are living in doubt about who we really are. While this is not perfectly clear to us, this living in doubt, we can accept the truth of the statement and then see if understanding dawns.

When we don’t understand something, it is because we have not forgiven. To understand all is to forgive all. And when we have forgiven, understanding comes next. We need to forgive ourselves for our own mistakes, our own lacks. God does not hold mistakes against us, and that is why we have never sinned. Sin would be a mistake that would be much harder to forgive, for we think that we have betrayed God, and that He will not forget nor forgive.

Nothing could be farther from the truth. God will see that we are guided, either by the Holy Spirit or the Self, and He holds no mistakes against us. He created us! He knows that we are fallible! But it is only the personal, little, self that keeps making mistakes. Once we turn over our jurisdiction to the Self that embodies us, our error record drops immensely.

We are so stubborn! We don’t always follow guidance, and if we did reverse this trend, we would be so much better off. God sees out actions, and He knows when we are about to reject guidance in our daily life. He acts to ease our discomfort, but he won’t step in and obstruct free will. So we are in a quandary.

The only wise choice is to make the decision, once and for all, that even if we don’t understand the “why” of a given directive, we will choose to follow it. God doesn’t put heavy demands on us. He takes us where we are, and then builds upon it to lead us back to Home and to Him.

Our self-doubt will diminish and eventually pass away when we become certain about who we are. This is just the definition of having self-doubt fall away. Right now we are surely unclear about true reality and who we truly are. But it won’t always be that way. We will come to clarity. And in the clarity we will thank God for His generosity. He has taken us by the hand and led us Home. And everything will get better. Nothing will ever be the same again, and this change is the great blessing of our lives.

Do Not Be Afraid to Look upon Fear, for It Cannot Be Seen

“Laws do not operate in a vacuum, and what leads to nothing has not happened. If reality is recognized by its extension, what leads to nothing could not be real. Do not be afraid, then, to look upon fear, for it cannot be seen.” (ACIM, T-11.V.2)

So often we have heard or read that we need to walk right up to fear, look it in its face, and it will disappear. This quotation says the same. And it goes further: There is not anything there to be seen at all.

My experience has sometimes been different, because I am able to scare myself with my own desert places. I can panic when I look upon fear too closely. But, given that I know A Course in Miracles, it is a panic based on nothing, on illusion only. There is nothing there that can actually harm me. Nothing at all.

We are not dealing with the real when we deal with fear, however we deal with it. We are dealing with illusion, with the scary thoughts of our deluded minds, and we are walking away, at the same time, from reality. Reality is not scary in the least. And so we don’t have to scare ourselves with our own desert places. Not at all.

Reality builds upon itself; that is what is meant by the “extension” comment in the quotation. The more we look on true reality, the bigger it gets, the more of our force field is taken up by the sweet beauty of reality.

Choose reality today. Gently turn aside from fear, not with resistance (for fear grows strong with resistance), but with love. Love overcomes fear, always and forever. And it is just such love that will save us.

The Reality of Everything Is Totally Harmless

“Wrong perception is the wish that things be as they are not. The reality of everything is totally harmless, because total harmlessness is the condition of its reality. It is also the condition of your awareness of its reality. You do not have to seek reality. It will seek you and find you when you meet its conditions.” (ACIM, T-8.IX.2)

We have made a world from our projections from within, a world that is perceived rather than truly experienced. And this perception has been wrong, has gone awry. We don’t have to stay with these misapprehensions, though. There is a better way. And true reality is what it is.

How do we experience true reality? When we recognize that we can be harmed by nothing, we are well on our way. Of course, in this world, this assertion strikes us as irrational. Surely there are many things in this world that hurt us. But our real Self is not hurt, and it is this Self that is able to experience true reality. This Self does not spend time lamenting perceptions of the world that are not accurate. This Self sits in the sun and is contented. Would we not all long for this experience?

Our conditions to meet include harboring no fear and no judgment. These are the twin conditions that keep us stuck in illusions, in our dream world. We may think that stress, fear, is always with us, but we need to think again. Fear is not with us when we are open to the God within. Judgment does not overtake us when we are communing with Him.

So: Today, let loose the misperceptions with which we have peopled our world. Know that fear and judgment can be left behind, and that the quickest route to that right choice is to touch base with the inward God. Meditate on Him, and see if there are not bright spots in your perception. Soon knowledge will replace perception, and we will know that all is well. Let us choose that all will be well today.

Choose Not Be Affected by Lack of Love from Without

“In reality you are perfectly unaffected by all expressions of lack of love. These can be from yourself and others, from yourself to others, or from others to you.” (ACIM, T-2.I.5)

This quotation doesn’t seem to make sense when we first read it. Of course we are affected by the lack of love expressed by others! But are we, really? We are our own Self, the entity whom God created, and we are not actually changed by anything that happens outside ourselves—including expressions of lack of love. In such a situation, we need only turn within, to the God within, and feel the love percolate up to the surface from deep within. We are fine; we are loved by God; we need fear other people in the world not at all.

This explanation needs some “sitting with” to reach full agreement with your very human mind. And perhaps the mind cannot comprehend this idea at all. Maybe it takes the heart. Our hearts know things that the mind, especially when caught by the ego, can never know. Ask the heart if it feels unloved when a significant other turns his/her back on us. Is it not pride, an egoic notion, that is truly hurt? If we ask deep within, we will know that our essential Self has known no pain; this essential Self is right there, waiting for our little self to come to its senses. We are loved, and we are not hurt when the source of that love changes.

We will always have love in our lives. We need never wonder if we will go lacking, for we won’t. This is a characteristic of true reality; this is the truth of what we experience in this sometimes sad world. Love never goes away; it just hides sometimes. But communing with our depths, communing with God, will right our little world again when we have suffered loss.

Ask today from whence your love might best come. You will sense an answer, and the pain and suffering (if this is your experience) will subside. Remembering God’s love is all that it takes.

Prayer Says Good-Bye to Fear

“To use prayer only as a means of reaching out to a god seen as separate is to attempt to use what cannot be used. . .Prayers such as these emanate from either heart or mind and have not the power of the wholehearted. Prayers such as these emanate from the state of fear that is the reality of the separated self.” (ACOL, 6.5)

All of us have prayed as though we were in a foxhole. These are the desperate prayers, when we are very vulnerable, for whatever reason. And all of us grew up seeing God as an all-powerful Eye Who could see anything that we were doing, and Who would mostly punish us if we did something that was “wrong.”

It is impossible to avoid these concepts of God. But the time has come for a more mature concept of the Deity. We believe, if we follow A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, that God is within, that we are all “God-stuff,” and that when we turn inward, we connect with Something both very deep and very high. We see this illusory world as a product of projection from within, yet we sense also that there is a Higher Reality, a reality that we long to experience.

When we turn inward and pray real prayers, our prayers are heard, but by a God Who does not feel inspired by our illusory fear. He will still listen, of course, but we are in a compromised state of mind and heart when we pray out of fear, and we often feel that our prayers have not reached the ceiling, that we have not been heard. This is because fear is a barrier to touching the Divine. It keeps us from what we most want.

There is a way around this. First, calm the mind and heart in whatever ways you have discovered work for you. For some, this is meditation. For some, it is reading the Workbook lessons that are a part of A Course in Miracles. For some, it is as mundane as deep breathing. But unless the mind and heart are somewhat calm, our prayers convict us of things that we think we have done wrong. And this isn’t a fruitful state in which we touch God.

We aren’t reaching to a God beyond the stars. It is nearer than our breath. And always there. He does not punish, however much we think that we deserve punishment. He is always present to listen. But from deep within us. Not outside.

“While your mind did not accept the truth of your identity or the reality of love without fear, it existed in a reality of fear and judgment, and bound heart and body to this reality.” (ACOL, Treatise on the New, 7.5)

This is the old way of thinking, a way that ACIM and ACOL sought to dismantle. We used to fear mightily, and we may still have flights of fear, but there ought to be some lessening by now. Our egoic mind is falling apart, finally, and we are living in a better personal world than we have ever known before. We may still have painful elements to our world, but the suffering (you may have observed) has lessened. This is because the ego has smelled defeat, and while the throes of the death process may be acute, they are not unending.

Leave behind fear and judgment as a decision of the mind and heart. Walk into the sunlight of a new world created by a loving God Whom we are coming to recognize, often for the first time.

In Separation from God, We Have Distorted Reality

“Is it so impossible to imagine that what God created was distorted by your desire to have your reality be other than what it is? Have you not seen this kind of distortion take place within the reality you do see?” (ACOL, 9.28)

Eons ago, when the “tiny, mad idea” (from A Course in Miracles) took hold, we thought that we would make a world that we would like better than the one that God envisioned and created for us. This was indeed madness. But, like adolescents, we forged ahead, and he made the decision to let us exert the free will with which He had endowed us. And what a mess we made for ourselves!

This was the detour into fear, the detour from true reality. And it is only now, in Christ-consciousness, that we have a chance to recoup what we have lost—the true meaning of reality as God intended it for us.

We know that this world is a place of madness. We know this if we have even an inkling of how badly things have gone for us. We have pain that escalates into suffering, and we feel so alone in all the world.

But now we are finding our way back, making out way back on the carpet laid out before us. We are heading backward into time (an ACIM concept), to the place that we left. And we tell ourselves that everything will be better this time. We know better now, we know better from hard experience. We cannot get along without God, as much as we might think we can. He made us to commune with Him, our Maker, and the extent to which we do so fuels the pace at which we right our world again.

Don’t be satisfied with a partial world of adolescent rebellion today. Free will is a great gift, but not when it is misused. Ask deeply, today if you like what you have made. The answer, if asked honestly, will be “no.” Then set about to get the guidance needed to create as elevated Selves of form with the God of our greater imaginings.

He will be there waiting for our return. He has never left us. He has always been waiting for our return to sanity. And that sanity is now beckoning us for a great Awakening.

The Detour into Fear

“The separation is merely a faulty formulation of reality, with no effect at all. The miracle, without a function in Heaven, is needful here. Aspects of reality can still be seen, and they will replace aspects of unreality. Aspects of reality can be seen in everything and everywhere. Yet only God can gather them together, by crowning them as one with the final gift of eternity.” (ACIM, T-13.VIII.3)

Our presumed separation from God has caused us all the grief. We could have taken physical form without this fall from grace, but we somehow made a tiny, mad mistake and forgot to laugh at the idea (from A Course in Miracles). We have not really separated, of course, because we are a part of God and cannot do so and live—and we live eternally. But we can imagine that we have separated from Him, and in the delusion come all the ill of humanity.

“Thus, the son’s participation in the idea of separation seemed to bring about a completely reshaped life, a destiny different than that which had already been written. Yet this participation could not but proceed from the original idea and could not proceed in reality but only in the external aspect of life that preceded it. The idea of separation changed nothing in reality, but became a drama acted out upon a stage so real that it seemed to be reality.” (ACOL, 12.22)

We are, like Shakespeare said, characters in a dream, writing and carrying out a drama in which we star. There is nothing wrong with play-acting, but we have hurt ourselves in the process of following illusions. We don’t realize that we are in a make-believe situation; we take it all so seriously. And that is part of our problem. We are in a “drama acted out upon a stage so real that it seemed to be reality.”

Let’s try to be cognizant of the drama so that we will be in a preparatory state to awakening from this insane play.

“To know what you now know, and remain aware only of the reality of the separated self, would not sustain Christ-consciousness in form.” (ACOL, Dialogues, 3.16)
We need to reach beyond just the separated state, for awareness of a mistake is not sufficient to get us out of that mistake. We need to reach out to God, immanent in ourselves as the inner Christ Self. We also need to see Christ in others, for we are not separate from them anymore than we are separate internally.

“This created the separate and the unloved in your perception, and your perception created an unreal reality of the separate and unloved, often referred to as hell or hell on earth.” (ACOL, Dialogues, Day 16, 16.15)

Are we really living in a hell on earth? In some respects we are.

But we can walk out of this hell by following guidance of the Holy Spirit (ACIM) or the Christ Self (ACOL). Our days will be brighter. We will be happier. And we will come, eventually, to know separation no longer. For it has always and alone been illusion. Our own delusion about reality.

We Were Created Perfect

“God in His devotion to you created you devoted to everything, and gave you what you are devoted to. Otherwise you would not have been created perfect. Reality is everything, and you have everything because you are real. You cannot make the unreal because the absence of reality is fearful, and fear cannot be created. As long as you believe that fear is possible, you will not create.
Opposing orders of reality make reality meaningless, and reality is meaning.” (ACIM, T-9.I.13)

We have been given everything, each of us. And so there is never any reason for envy. Of course, we do not all have everything at any given point in time, but we do have everything in eternity. We cannot really make the unreal, which are illusions. We cannot make nothing out of nothing. We can see illusions, but we can never make them real. And in that sense we are desirous of returning to true reality, for in our heart we recognize that this is all there is. It is the true meaning of anything and everything that is actually real. Illusions, being unreal, are inferior props for experiencing an untrue reality. And this is all that we can experience until we open to God and His way to salvation.

We were created perfect, and it is only in illusion that we fell from grace. We are still perfect in our innocence—not in the illusion, but in reality. So there has really been no separation from God, for we are part of Him, and to separate in reality would be impossible. But we can not “know” God in His entirety, in a mystical sense, when we are lost in attack and anger, and all other negative emotions that spring from fear. Fear is unreal, but we don’t recognize this, and so we think that we experience it. The truth of reality is far bigger and far better than anything fear would introduce into our world. Love has a way of creating the happiness that we all crave. And in the love do we find true reality.

Tomorrow’s blog posting will take up the term, “love.”

We Disconnected from God in the Detour into Fear

“You are now beginning to reach the stage of understanding wherein you can realize that it was not some separate ‘you’ or some species without form who at some point in time chose to express love in physical form, and so began this experience of human life. You are now beginning to be able to understand that it was God was made this choice. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: A Treatise on the New, 8.1)”

1 – Ego / Physical Form

We have long thought that the ego and physical form are synonymous. But they are not. We came into form, due to God’s decision, but it was ourselves who took the wrong detour—the detour into fear that is the ego. God didn’t make this decision, we are led to believe by what Jesus says in this quotation. We did, from, according to A Course in Miracles, a “tiny, mad idea” about which we forgot to laugh.

2 – Christ-consciousness

Would we do this again? Even after sustaining Christ-consciousness for some time? We might, and so it behooves us to avoid attack, avoid judgment, and avoid planning against (bad) contingencies (unless prompted by guidance).

3 – Not Bad

So matter is not bad. Being in physical form is not bad. There is a way to be in physical form and stay true to God. And that is the place that we are heading—Christ-consciousness. When we leave fear behind, we will be well on our way.

4 – God and Us

“I say this because only now are you beginning to be ready to hear that you and God are the same. That when I say ‘God made a choice’ I am not saying that you did not. I am saying that a choice was made within the one mind, the one heart, and that this was your choice as well as God’s choice. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: A Treatise on the New, 8.2)”

5 – Embodying God

We are seen here as part of God. We embody Him. It is just that simple. He is experiencing life through us, the only way that He can experience, because the whole cannot experience without contrast; parts can encounter contrast, and thus God can experience through all the parts of “us.”

6 – Blasphemy?

This may seem like blasphemy, but I did not say it; if we believe that Jesus channeled A Course of Love, our guide has very good credentials indeed. Our leader. The one who sets us back on course.

7 – Disconnect

“What happened in the case of human beings, was a disconnect from your own true nature, which in turn caused a disconnect in your ability to express love, which in turn caused a disconnect in your ability to know God, because you did not know your self. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: A Treatise on the New, 8.6)”

8 – Journey without Distance

This explains the detour into fear, which caused the need for the return, a “journey without distance,” as A Course in Miracles says. When we detoured into fear, we lost our real self, necessitating return. And we are now well on our way for that return. That is the blessing. We have found the way at last.

9 – Mind

“What God, in effect had to do, what you in effect had to do, in order to live in a nature inconsistent with what God could not disconnect from, was disconnect from God. Since God was the center of your being, it was impossible to disconnect your heart and still live. What could be disconnected was your will, or in other words, your mind. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: ‘A Treatise on the New,’ 8.8)”

10 – Separation

This passage explains how the separation came about–the separation from God. We disconnected our minds from Him, and we went astray. Elsewhere we learn that it was a conscious choice, and that God acquiesced in it. We were too eager to move ahead of His Way. We were like rebellious adolescents. And so He let us have our way.

11 – Adolescents

There is a lovely exposition of this by way of a comparison with parents who let their rebellious adolescents go their own way. They do not try to stop their headstrong tendencies. They do not disinherit them. The parents know that they must let go. And God knew this as well.

12 – Guidance

Today us resolve today not to rush headlong into situations for which we have no guidance. We are trying to depend on self alone when we do this, and we will feel fear (an ACIM tenet). Let us determine to leave fear behind, knowing that it has always been a conscious choice. Let us determine to make Heaven on earth as our daily walk continues.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Please help me, today, to undo the separation that exists between You and myself. It is time to go Home, not to Heaven but to the real world in this world. Help me to return Home today.

Be there for me, I ask of You. I cannot make this “journey without distance” without You.

I turned away into fear, and I would disown fear today. I have had many anxious moments in my life, but I would be done with such foolishness. And foolishness it is. There is nothing fear, when I know that You walk in me. How could there be? Thank You.

Amen.

The Original Nature of Being Requires a Form of Love

“There is a reason why the original nature of your being cannot exist in a form unnatural to love. A form whose nature is fear cannot house the creation of love. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: ‘A Treatise on the New,’ 3.12)”

1 – No Fear

This passage explains further what was begun in the passage quoted yesterday. We can know our “original nature,” even in physical form, but we cannot know this original nature if we still live in fear. Fear is the home of the ego, and we are told in A Course of Love that we have left the ego behind. If vestiges seem to remain, they are illusory, and are meant to be thrust off as unworthy of a child of God.

2 – Being of Love

So the physical can house a being of love, which all of us are aiming to be. But if we don’t reach for this love, we will not know our “original nature.” The elevated Self of form, the Christ-consciousness housed in the physical, cannot shine through. We will be stuck in fear-ridden unreality, the world of the ego. And we will not know our ultimate glory in this world.

3 – The New

The “New,” as described in this treatise, is meant to convey that we are living in a new time, a time in which we can experience the love that we have lost through separation from God. We can actually “remember” the state of union with God, and thereby realize that we truly never lost it. But having forgotten it through the succumbing to the ego’s wily ways, we were unaware of all the joys that could be ours. The “New” would have us forget all of our former nonsense, and to walk into the sunlight with Jesus (an ACIM concept).

4 – ACIM Workbook

It is good to think a moment about how we will feel when we are living in love, when our day-to-day living is embedded in love rather than fear. We can know glimpses of this state, even before Christ-consciousness, is we faithfully keep our meditations and/or the Workbook of A Course in Miracles. It is amazing the extent to which our lives can be transformed by just such religious practice. Our lives smooth out, we find less to get upset about, and we are more loving companions for our significant others. The blessings grow over the days, weeks, and months. We live better, because we are not kowtowing to the illusory fear that we allowed because we were trying to protect our egos. Our egos can go safely, for Jesus assured us in A Course in Miracles that without ego, we live in peace—not the chaos that we think will ensue. Our personality coalesces in the Self that is the Christ within, and peace, under these conditions, becomes the life that we live.

5 – Don’t Rue the Day

There is no better way to spend a lifetime, and, if we have rued days up to now, now is the time to stop such nonsense. Be glad of what love has thus far wrought in us, and know that the love will continue to grow, amplifying joy. Life just gets better and better.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I know only love today, not fear. So often fears still try to intrude, even though I have read and studied the words of Jesus in ACIM and ACOL. I would not have fears to intrude today. You do not wish me to have fear intrude.

When the day seems difficult, guide my ways into more peaceful pathways. I know that You wish the best for me, and that is found only in loving relationships with You and with my brothers and sisters in this world.

Thank You for the joyous moments of this day, and I ask Your blessing for more of the same. Help me to make good decisions, not listening to my own judgment, but the inner Self, which knows far more than the personal self ever could know. Thank You for Your faithfulness to me. Help me to be worthy of Your faithfulness, and guide my own predilections to a more worthy future of faithfulness to You.

Amen.

Turn Inward

1 – No Turning Outward

“Again let me repeat and reemphasized my statements: where once you turned outward in your seeking and saw within what you perceived without, now you turn inward and reflect what you discover within outward. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: A Treatise on the New, 2:2)”

2 – Projection

This is a reversal, but it is not the reversal described in A Course in Miracles of “projection makes perception.” This “projection makes perception” indicates that what we see without has first been seen within—then projected into illusions, dreams. So what is being talked about here is different.

3 – Inner-Directed

We do know that we are mightily influenced by what we see outside ourselves, not recognizing that it is coming from within. We think it is without, and it is this that Jesus is addressing. Don’t be so concerned about what you see without, in the outside world. We need to be inner-directed, and it is this that Jesus is saying. Even secular psychologists in our world recommend the same.

4 – The Way

“There was no Way or path or process back to God and Self before me. It was the time of man wandering in the wilderness. I came as a representation or demonstration of The Way. This I why I have been called, ‘The Way, The Truth and The Light.’ (The Treatises of A Course of Love: A Treatise on the New, 2:4)

5 – Edgar Cayce

This is describing Jesus as those of us who follow him, see him. Edgar Cayce, the psychic from the last century, said that Jesus was the leader of souls who came to earth to rescue trapped individuals who could not find their way out alone, so trapped were they by the material world. The light of God had just about gone out in the “daughters of men,” and so the “Sons of God” came. Of course, gender does not matter; these are just expressions.

6 – Jesus

Is Jesus the only way? Is this what he is saying? I think not. He knows that those of us who are taking unto ourselves A Course of Love are looking to him for guidance. And those of us who look to A Course of Love find solace in Jesus’s comforting words. He is speaking as the Jesus of 2,000 years ago, when he walked the earth as the Jesus whom we love from the New Testament.

7 – Other Teachers

Jesus says in A Course in Miracles that for some there are other teachers, that God would not have left anyone bereft of a way back to Him. So those who are not ready to accept Jesus will probably not be drawn to A Course of Love. But for those of us who are so drawn, the message is one of infinite peace.

8 – Fear

“Although God never abandoned the humans who seeded the Earth, the humans, in the state of the forgotten self, could not know God because of their fear. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: “A Treatise on the New,” 2.4)”

9 – Fear and Love

This passage amplifies upon the oft-stated words in A Course in Miracles that fear and love are the only two emotions. The ego has ruled fear, and we have been caught by the ego for eons. Now, in both books, the hope is that we will relinquish the ego and move into love as our single emotion.

10 – Negative Emotions

Having love as a single emotion does not mean that we will never feel negative emotions. Elsewhere in A Course of Love, we learn that we may continue to experience anger, but if we don’t like this, we can (as A Course in Miracles says), see this as a mistake and drop the emotion from our list.

11 – Channels to God

Our channels to God’s love had been closed to Him (an ACIM concept). Now we must, once again, realize that God is a loving God, and that His will does not include the visitation of pain and suffering upon ourselves. We have done this (an ACIM concept), and we can choose to undo it. May we choose to undo it today.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

As we revisit the passage for today, may we realize that we could not know God as long as we allowed fear to rule. May we drop fear from our repertoire of emotions. May we know only love. And if this is too much for us to assimilate today, may we make inroads on this accomplishment.

I wish for a good day of love with no fear. May I recognize that if I find attack, I have in some way chosen a fearful state of experience. May I drop fear from my perception, and because projection makes perception, may I now and always move closer to the love that is Yours.

Amen.

Become a Being of Love without Fear, Joy without Sorrow

1 – Day 23

“As we spoke earlier of being a channel, today we speak of being a carrier. (Dialogues of a Course of Love, Day 23)”

2 – Carrying the Truth

We are carrying the truth of what Jesus is telling us. We carry this truth as a pregnant woman carries a child. We are frequently conscious of the “child,” but there are also times when we forget that we carry a “child.” We have a life in the outside world, and Jesus would have us live in both the inner and outer worlds of our experience. We have been externally directed, but now he would has us been internally directed.

3 – Easy or Hard?

It is not easy, but also it is not hard. We will become accustomed to the two levels of being. We will know union, not separation. We will know God. And we will carry these new ideas within us, as a pregnant woman carries her child.

4 – The Three Parts of ACOL

“Forget not that who you are is what you are here to make known and that thus, you must be a being who knows love without fear, joy without sorrow, and life everlasting. You must be this. A Course of Love gave you the understanding you needed in order to realize that you are this. The treatises gave you a way to apply this understanding. This dialogue is meant to give you the means to carry what you have been given. (A Course of Love: Dialogues, p. 190)”

5 – Carrying

“Carrying” within the knowledge that we have experienced is our way Home. When we carry within what we have experienced on the mountain top, we will be ready to take our place on level ground once again, with our brothers and sisters who have not yet made the trek to the mountain top.

6 – Surrender

Jesus reminds us that surrendering within is actually surrendering to our own will. As we learned in A Course in Miracles, God’s will is actually our own. We are never coerced.

7 – Never Alone

Carrying these truths within will ready us to reach outward to this world. The new will be birthed through us. But we are never alone. We do not have to feel burdened by a responsibility to carry the good news to our brothers and sisters. Our life in the future will be a joy that is the truth of Christ-consciousness.

8 – Illusion

“The clouds of illusion, even those that have gently surrounded our time together on the mountain top must now be surrendered, much as a woman surrenders her body to the growth of a child within. (Dialogues of a Course of Love, Day 23)”

9 – This World

We need to give up our illusions in this world. We need to realize that there is a reality beyond what we have been previously experiencing. The illusory reality will give way to the real, the real world. We will not have long to wait.

10 – The Real

We surrender to the real. We don’t try to force it, though, for God does not kowtow to our demands. He is not affected by such stridency at all. He wants surrender to His Way. And we have had much practice in this. Now we must make of surrender an hourly, even minute-by-minute fact of our living.

11 – God

We surrender to God. We live well under such conditions. We know that we are blessed, and we are grateful. And in the gratitude comes even greater experiences of the real world.

12 – Our Own Will

“Surrendering to the forces that move inside of you is surrendering to your own will. . .This will is divine will, your will, Christ-consciousness. It is alive within you. All that is required is that you carry it with awareness, honor, willingness. From this will the new be birthed. (Dialogues of a Course of Love, Day 23)”

13 – God = Self

God is within the self, the Self is God. So when we surrender to our real will, we are surrendering to the God within.

14 – Insulting?

This is not hard, but it may be personally insulting, for God may send us on errands that cause us to be embarrassed in our perceptions. This shabby self-perception needs to end (from A Course in Miracles).

15 – New World

We are trying to birth a new reality, a new world. And we will do so when totally surrendered to that which is within us. We will know what to think, say, and do. We will be in conflict no longer. This will, at first, not be a constant state. We will have to get used to the new. We will know glimpses of Awakening, of Christ-consciousness, in all likelihood, before we sustain Christ-consciousness. We need to ask what in our experience needs to be eliminated before we are ready for Christ-consciousness. We need to be very careful in our thinking about this matter. Ask honestly, dialogue with the inner Self, and the Answer will come.

16 – Conflicted

We have allowed ourselves to be tied up in knots to no good purpose. Now Jesus is offering us a new way, a way of harmony and peace, a way in which we see a new reality. Let us not let him down today. Let us carry the new within us as a pregnant woman carries a child.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I come to understand all that Jesus has been saying to me. Thank You for the guidance that I am finding in what I am reading. May I not be burdened or frustrated by my progress or lack of progress. Once begun, the end of the journey is certain. May I rest easy in that knowledge.

May I be certain today that I have really let the ego go, wither away inside of me. May I think, do, or say nothing that reinforces the ego that I have left behind. This is a principal step that I need to take to be ready for You to reach down and lift me up. May I succeed today, with Your help.

May I know the joy that You hold out to me. I so want to feel this joy continually. May I not feel what I have learned, and what I have come to understand without learning, as a burden. May I know that You are always near to help me take up my responsibilities in this world.

Amen.

The Journey of the Self into Form and into Separation

1 – Day 13

“Once the One Self became form and knew its Self, it knew separate thought. The separate thoughts of the one self, rather than the form of the one self, allowed for the knowing of the self that created the many selves. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 13)”

2 – One Self

The One Self was, ultimately, God. But with free will, we made separation real; we thought that we had separated from God, though in reality this would be impossible. We could lack the knowledge of His One Will, though, forgetting that we were God Himself.

3 – Detour into Fear

This detour into fear (from A Course in Miracles) is all that has happened as we have moved into the world of form, the little or personal self. The Self became differentiated into the many, so that God could experience Himself. But the experiencing was faulty, for we are meant to commune with our Creator—something we didn’t do when we thought ourselves lost in separation from Him. We though that we could make a world that we would like better, but God limited our will to miscreate, lest creation be doomed . He allowed us to go into illusion, which would hurt nothing in reality. We think that we suffer, but it is all illusion.

4 – The Godhead

The many selves came from the One Self, the Godhead. There is no Other. We have done this illusion unto ourselves. We think that we have pain and suffering, that we have made a “better” world than God could create. But we only have lived with an imprisoned will, a will that first the Holy Spirit (as in ACIM) and now the Christ Self would lead us to disavow.

5 – Self of Form

“The ‘one’ self of form is the self you were born into. The one self of form comes to know the One Self through relationship with other selves experiencing oneness through being selves of form. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 13)”

6 – Relationship

It is only through relationship that God can know Himself, that we can know ourselves, as the Self that has been individuated, i.e., made into separate “parts.” This individuation is a means that, through relationship to each other, we can know ourselves, and God can know Himself. We are God, but we are not yet in union with each other, and so we are therefore somewhat less than the Godhead. In union with others, we come into our fullness. Then and only then do we know both unity and relationship, and we are home in God.

7 – Christ-consciousness

This is Christ-consciousness, but it is not here for many of us. The timing of Awakening, according to ACIM, is when God deems us ready. And many people who seem flawed will nevertheless experience Awakening. It is not a matter of perfecting ourselves. There are mysteries here that we don’t comprehend.

8 – Jesus

Yet Jesus in A Course of Love is attempting to spell out the process of reaching Christ-consciousness to us. He is writing a metaphysical document that explains creation and our place in it. The words are sometimes dense, but when studied as one would study a textbook, absorbing every line, the prose becomes comprehensible. Unlike something I once thought, you can’t read ACOL as though you were reading a story. Perhaps this works on the first times through, but to understand in depth, study at some level is needed.

9 – Integrate Many and One

“You are thus not meant to lose the experience of the self of form but to integrate it so that you are both the many and the one. The oneness that your individual self represents in this life is the oneness of the Holy One who is both one—somewhat in the way you think of the individual self—and All. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 13)”

10 – Elevated Self of Form

This antedates the elevated Self of form. This passage leads us to that concept. We occupy form, and we are not to disavow it. But this personal self of form needs to be elevated to the Self that is the inner Christ. What will bring this about?

11 – Study / Love

Study gets us there. But love actually effects the transformation—love and a forgiving attitude (from ACIM) that is not judgmental. In A Course in Miracles, we are told that we cannot judge and hope to awake. Yet we still fall into judgment a thousand times a day—until we don’t. When we don’t, we have found Christ-consciousness.

12 – Happiness

And we are happy. Stupendously happy. And we live effortlessly. We have no fear. We have no anxieties. We will with inner peace, in loving relationship to every individual with whom we are introduced.

13 – Spacious Self

“Thus holding the loveless self within the spacious Self of love is the answer to the question of evil and the final lifting of the last veils of fear. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 13)”

14 – Imagination

There will be parts of us which are unloving. But we can imagine—and “imagine” is the important word—that we have a “spacious” self that is the real Self. This Self chooses to encompass the unloving parts of ourselves, and this creates a transformation in ourselves.

15 – Evil / Fear

This ends evil. This ends fear. We are at home in God.

16 – Enfolding

If we just enfold the unloving part of ourselves into the part that is always deep within, held in Love, the Self, we will know peace. There is actually no other way that we can know peace. For evil and fearful dreams will disturb our illusions. And, actually, we can never be happy with illusions, unless they are dreams that the Holy Spirit brings—the happy dreams that precede Awakening, to prepare us for it

17 – Happy Dreams

We do not want to get stuck in desiring the happy dreams that the Holy Spirit brings. We want the real world; we want reality. And we want to awake. This can come about when we seek Awakening earnestly, with all of our being. Yet in our striving, we must realize that our striving cannot be as the ego pushed us previously. Or the ego will reawaken and much will be lost; we will be on the treadmill again.

18 – Eastern Story

So seek enlightenment as a man whose had is held under water seeks air (an old Eastern analogy). We will have enlightenment when we devote ourselves to the loving that brings it, the loving in relationship and union with all others whom we encounter.

19 – Easy Way

The way is smooth. The way is easy. And when we look back on Christ-consciousness, we will know that we need do nothing in this world (from ACIM, but the term “Awakening” is used). We will want to do something to lead our brothers and sisters to the realization that we have had, but we will do so effortlessly. Life will become one sweet song.

20 – Suffering Self

““The same is true of all you would fear, such as the suffering self. A suffering self, held within the spacious Self exists in harmony with the spacious Self. Attempts to eject the self of suffering from the spacious Self create disharmony. It is only by this holding within that the loveless self and the suffering self are rendered ineffective. It is only in this way that you realize that all exist within. It is only in this way that you become completely fearless and totally spacious, for fear is part of the density of form, being a lack of love. (ACOL Dialogues, p. 158)”

21 – Boundary-less Self

Before we can understand Day Thirteen, we need to try to comprehend what is meant by the “spacious Self.” It is discussed herein as a “boundary-less Self,” the all-encompassing Self that we share with everyone. It is the Self of Love, and when we focus on Love, we can overcome any fearful thoughts and feelings of the small self of form.

22 – Self of Fear

Jesus says that we are not to try to eject the self of fear, but to encompass with the greater spacious Self, thus rendering it ineffective. Trying to eject the self of fear actually makes it worse in our experience of fear.

23 – Summation

Look again at the passage from A Course of Love, the Dialogues, quoted above. It actually summarizes much that is said in Day Thirteen. At the conclusion of the chapter, Jesus once again returns to the theme of unity and relationship. We have true relationship with our brothers and sisters when we recognize and incorporate the spacious Self, and then we are truly in unity with all.

24 – Union

“Once fear is gone, true relationship is not only possible but inevitable. True relationship exists naturally in the state of harmony that I the spacious Self. This is the state of union. (Dialogues of A Course of Love, Day 13)”

24 – Not Fearful

When we are not fearful of others, our brothers and sisters, we will seek union with them. We will seek relationship with them. And this will take us home. Yes, home. We are not living as God unless we are living in union, something that we have not been doing as our separated selves. We have been in relationship, but this has been flawed, for we have been judgmental of each other. And we can never know Awakening if we are judgmental. This is a crucial point that can be easily overlooked. We cannot know Christ-consciousness, cannot come to Christ-consciousness, cannot receive the gift of Christ-consciousness, if we are judgmental.

25 – Judgment

Come to God today and ask that judgment be taken away. All of us must do this, all who have not already been freed of judgmental thoughts.

26 – Accepting

Without judgment are we accepting of all—in union with each personal self elevated to the Self, and in relationships as individuated beings.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Help me to be fearless, and to know that I can transcend the suffering self by my fearlessness. Help me not to be tempted to try to reject this suffering self. Help it simply to wither away as I come to know my real Self.

I know that my real Self is always one of Love, but I tend to forget this oft-repeated truth. Help me not to forget the Self of Love today. Thanking You in advance, I turn to You often today and every day.

Amen.

All Living Hearts Are Tranquil with a Stir of Deep Anticipation

1 – Everlasting Things

“All living hearts are tranquil with a stir of deep anticipation, for the time of everlasting things is now at hand. There is no death. The Son of God is free. And in his freedom is the end of fear. (M68)”

2 – Fear

Would that we could welcome the end of fear on a daily basis! But somehow we all fall back on anxieties and fears, falling short of accepting God’s grace in our daily lives. When fear comes, we must go within and contemplate what it would mean to end the fear. Get still. Commune with God. Simply ask Him for the blessing of His peace.

3 – God

In all likelihood, when we have done our part to quiet our troubled minds, He will step in and finish the work. We will know the peace of God.

4 – Medication

Sometimes He uses pills to effect this transformation. Jesus asserts that pills, medication, are not to be avoided, though pill are a form of magical solution. But, being in a fear-ridden state, if we tried to live without pills we might be worse off.

5 – Ask

Ask God what solution He would hand out to you. He will find a way to get through to you. He will show you a solution, and this solution may come swiftly. The main thing is to recognize the answer to prayer when it comes. Be alert. Be aware. And thank God when that solution comes.

6 – Song of Heaven

“And we, God’s children, rise up from the dust and look upon our perfect sinlessness. The song of Heaven sounds around the world, as it is lifted up and brought to truth. (M69)”

7 – Beautiful

These are very beautiful words that calm my soul as I write. We have not sinned, however much we think that we have. It is true that we have made mistakes, but these will be relinquished for resolution when we are sorry for them and make restitution. They will not be attracting again to us; we just want a solution, a remedy.

8 – “Sin”

Sin, on the other hand, when a thing is so labeled, has an attracting feature. I don’t know why this is, but Jesus recognizes this about our egos. We will want to do that sinful thing again, and then the ego has a field day.

9 – Holiness

“And we accept His holiness as ours; as it is. As God created us so will we be forever and forever, and we wish for nothing but His Will to be our own. Illusions of another will are lost, for unity of purpose has been found. (M69)”

10 – God’s Will = Our Will

God’s Will is our will; this we must recognize. The Holy Spirit chooses for us, only for us in every instance. It is the ego which has a separate will, and this will always leads us astray. There is no peace in the ego’s eyes. When we choose to effect God’s Will in our daily lives, we lose illusions that there is another will. We no longer think, like Jonah, that we know better. We know that God knows what will really make us happy, and we fall in line with that Will of His.

11 – Joy

“These things await us all, but we are not prepared as yet to welcome them with joy. As long as any mind remains possessed of evil dreams, the thought of hell is real. God’s teachers have the goal of wakening the minds of those asleep, and seeing there the vision of Christ’s face to take the place of what they dream. (M69)”

12 – Vision of Christ’s Face

This passage says some very important things to us. The passage equates evil dreams with the thought of hell. And the passage spells out what we are to do about that: waken the minds of those asleep. When we do so, the vision of Christ’s face takes the place of the evil dreams.

13 – Toward Awakening

This says that we have work to do, to bring Awakening to all minds. We can move toward Awakening for ourselves by studying the Course diligently. We will then not be unhealed healers, but those ready to take our part in the plan of salvation, the part that God has prepared just for us. Until we respond affirmatively to the call for salvation, our part is missing. Nor can it be taken by anybody else. We are unique in that sense.

14 – Christ in Our Brothers and Sisters

The vision of Christ’s face is mentioned several times in the Course. We will see Christ in our brothers and sisters when we are prepared. In large measure, that is what we are meant to see. In dreams, which are what we are caught in before we waken, we will not see Christ’s face, because our brothers and sisters sometimes elicit anger and attack in us. When we have let anger and attack fall away, we will be on our way to the salvation that we are bring to others, as well as accepting salvation for ourselves.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I leave aside thoughts of anger and attack, and take my place in Your plan for salvation. May I awaken the minds of those asleep. Until I have accepted the Awakening of my own mind, I will not be a completely healed healer.

Thank you for Your help. I need You more than ever today.

Amen.

Give Up Your Little Life Beset with Fear

1 – Waking

“Help me to wake My children from the dream of retribution and a little life beset with fear, that ends so soon it might as well have never been. (Song of Prayer, S-3.IV.8)”

2 – God

This is a prayer, presumably, from God Himself, asking that His children—us—be awakened. He would do the awakening, when we are ready. Let us never forget that; he makes the decision when we are ready.

3 – No Retribution

God would have us set aside a dream of retribution, which is punishment borne of judgment. He would have us set aside a “little life beset with fear.” I do know that personally I never get angry unless I am stressed, and I think that this may be true for many people. For many others whom I encounter. May we give up our dreams of retaliation (a form of retribution) and give up our dreams of fear.

4 – Fear?

We have nothing to be afraid of. That is the glorious promise.

5 – God Calls

“Listen, My child, your Father calls to you. Do not refuse to hear the Call for Love. Do not deny to Christ what is His Own. Heaven is here and Heaven is your home. (Song of Prayer, S-3.IV.8)”

6 – Heaven

“Heaven is here.” Yes! When our hearts are right, we know Heaven on earth; we do not have to wait until after death. Heaven, right here, is our home. And we all long to return to home.

7 – Christ Self

God would have us recognize His call for Love. We are meant to embody the Christ Self Who is within. This is our heritage.

8 – Meditation

These statements are meditative in intent. They are not meant to led us farther along the pathway by our minds, but by our hearts. We meditate upon the lovely words and soon find ourselves farther along the path homeward.

9 – Release

“So now return your holy voice to Me. The song of prayer is silent without you. The universe is waiting your release because it is its own. (Song of Prayer, S-3.IV.10)”

10 – Judgments

We need to give up our own judgments. We need not to try to make decisions on our own, something that is impossible anyway. We make decisions with Christ or the Antichrist (from the ACIM Text), because our agreement with another is what makes all things happen. And we would make decisions with Christ, Which, in ACIM, is the Holy Spirit. We would not choose to go about our world today, wily-nily. We would choose to live it with Christ. Let’s be assured that our intent to do so is all that is needed.

11 – A Call from God

“Remember this; whatever you may think about yourself, whatever you may think about the world, your Father needs you and will call to you until you come to Him in peace at last. (Song of Prayer, S-3.IV.10)

12 – Listen

God will never give up on us. He will continue to call until we are ready, and until we listen in earnest.

Dear Father/Mother,

Let us lead a good life today. I realize that a “good life” is an abstraction, but I would try to make it concrete—following You throughout the day. Let me remember to ask of the Holy Spirit what my next step ought to be. And then may I listen and follow.

This is the only way to walk along the pathway home.

Amen.

You Retain Thousands of Little Scraps of Fear that Prevent the Holy One from Entering

“You retain thousands of little scraps of fear that prevent the Holy One from entering. . . .Watch your mind for the scraps of fear, or you will be unable to ask me to do so. I can help you only as our Father created us. (T61)”

1 – Anxiety / Fear

Here Jesus is explaining something that he discusses at length elsewhere. We cannot ask him to relieve us of anxiety or fear, because it is created by our minds. He does not want to interfere with the results of our thinking. Instead, we are to ask the Holy Spirit to help us to eliminate the conditions that led to our fear. These fears are ego-related, without exception, for love knows no anxiety.

2 – Daunting Task

It is a daunting task if we surmise from this passage that we must remove “thousands” of little scraps of fear. But the passage does not indicate this. We can easily remove them all at once, in the best case scenario, by asking the help of the Holy Spirit.

3 – Peace

Then we will know peace. If another day arrives, with more scraps of fear, we simply ask again. We cannot expect complete freedom from anxiety until surrender to God is complete, and this may not happen immediately. It could, of course, but realistically it often doesn’t, because we are very much still creatures of this world.

4 – Light

“Light cannot penetrate through the walls you make to block it, and it is forever unwilling to destroy what you have made. No one can see through a wall, but I can step around. (T61)”

Jesus is here giving us reassurance that he can overrule our propensity to build walls around us: He will simply step around the walls. In A Course in Miracles, Jesus identifies himself as our elder brother, who has walked the whole pathway, and thus stands at the end to correct any mistake that we cannot correct. He guides us in his teaching. He does not interfere with the cause and effect nature of our choices, but he does guide us to new choices that are better for us.

5 – Ego

Light will not destroy what we have made. Similarly, the ego will not be destroyed, but we will simply step aside from it, letting it wither from our awareness. This when we have realized that the ego never brought us anything that we wanted. Of course, we thought that the ego was bringing us what we wanted, but never were its triumphs not bought with tears of pain. Highs and lows are the only directions that the ego knows.

6 – Highs

We want consistent highs, and the ego, being egocentric and unsharing with our brothers and sisters, can never give us consistent highs. We are meant to be in this world with others, and we are not to think of ourselves more highly than we think of others. We are equals. At this point, some of us know more, temporarily, than others. But that doesn’t make us better. Those who, as the New Testament says, have been given much, will much be required. As we share with others, our life smooths out, and we know a harmony that was unknowable as long as the ego was in ascendancy.

7 – Jesus Speaking

“I can help you only as our Father created us. I will love you and honor you and maintain complete respect for what you have made, but I will not uphold it unless it is true. (T61)”

We have “made” with the ego, not yet “creating” as co-creators with God. We have made illusion. And Jesus will not uphold those illusions that are not dreams given us by the Holy Spirit—happy dreams.

“I will never forsake you any more than God will, but I must wait as long as you choose to forsake yourself. Because I wait in love and not in impatience, you will surely ask me truly. I will come in response to a single unequivocal call. (T61 – T62)”

8 – Single Unequivocal Call

I find the last sentence in the above passage to be one of the most reassuring in all of A Course in Miracles. Jesus will come to us—we know not how—but he has the ability to be in many places at once. And when we call without conflict, he comes to us, a “single unequivocal call.” What more could we ask?

9 – Holding Our Hands

Elsewhere in ACIM he says that we can imagine walking along with him holding our hand. And he asserts that this will be no “idle fantasy.”

10 – Elder Brother

Jesus, our elder brother in ACIM, is dedicated to us. He walked the pathway to the resurrection 2,000 years ago, and he is still walking along with us to better times. Don’t let your doubts get the best of you. Imagine that he is here with us, and he will be. Use your imagination. That is what we have been imagination for.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

When I awake in the middle of the night, fearful, may I turn these scraps of fear over to the Holy Spirit for resolution. May I gently return to sleep, knowing that He is taking care of them.

May I have help in the conditions that have brought this fear about. Thank you for being there for me.

Amen.

Jesus: “Fear Cannot be Controlled by Me, but It Can Be Self-Controlled. Fear Prevents Me from Giving You My Control.”

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Affirmation: “Fear can be self-controlled.”

Reflections:

1 – Previous Posts

I have posted on passages from A Course of Miracles about fear three times in the very recent past. Fear is a motif of ACIM, and fear and love are said to be the only two emotions–with all others being subsets of those two. Fear is of the ego, and the presence of fear is a sure sign that we are letting the ego rule once again. We need to find out how to avoid letting the ego rule. We will never make much progress on our spiritual “journey without distance” (from ACIM) unless we find a way to overcome fear. But Jesus also tells us that we cannot “master” fear by our insistence; he says that the only true mastery is through love. So this puts us back at square one. We need to understand how to love, to get ourselves and our egos out of the way, to see how we can view our world, the people in it and ourselves, with only the positive sense of love. Then and only then will we be free of anxieties. It is true, though, that such mastery may come ultimately only with Awakening.

2 – Conditions Bringing Fear

The quotation is not the complete passage, and what is quoted can be a little misleading. Later on Jesus says that we are to ask for help in eliminating the conditions that have brought the fear about. That then frees us to accept the control of Jesus. What are these conditions, usually? That we have been too self-centered, that we have not let go and let God, or, more precisely, the Holy Spirit as the Communicator to us. We have not let the Holy Spirit have His way in the guidance that we have asked to recognize as we live our lives. In these early passages in the Text of ACIM, Jesus has not yet introduced the Holy Spirit fully, and he uses the first person, himself, to introduce us to the idea that we need help in our daily lives. He is there for us, and later on he will make clear that the Holy Spirit is there for us. Here we are bade to give control to Jesus in regard to the conditions that have brought fear about. It is always a desire to be separate, these conditions. And it is not the will of the universe that we see ourselves as separate and apart from the whole. We desire so much to be independent, but we are not intended to be as independent as the ego has said. We are part of the All, and the sooner we join the whole in our minds and hearts, the quickly we will be free of fear, free of anxieties.

3 – Self-Controlled Fear

In getting the guidance of the Holy Spirit to eliminate the conditions that brought about the fear, we are going to the root of the fear. This is true self-controlled fear.

4 – Cause and Effect

Jesus also says that cause and effect are involved in fear. When the conditions that bring about fear are present as a cause, then the effect is the fear. To tamper with this cause-and-effect relationship would be to deemphasize our minds, which Jesus would never do. He also says that we fear the power of the mind, but to think of it as impotent is not a helpful concept. We are actually afraid of the power of the mind.

5 – Fear Can Be Overcome

Fear can be overcome. It is simple to read these words and to take them to heart, but perhaps it is not easy to effect the eradication of fear. As indicated, A Course in Miracles Course returns again and again to the differences between love and fear, and ultimately tells us that the only true mastery of fear is through love. How do we effect this change? How do we choose love in every situation? Ah, that is the question. But one of the best ways to so live is to turn often to the inner Self, as well as to the inner Deity, in communion and prayer. If we keep a reverent attitude toward what we are going through in daily life, we will be living in a more centered way. We will not become so scattered, with attempts made so often to go off in many directions at once. The scattered approach to living is an invitation to allow fear the upper hand. And stress fuels anxieties.

6 – Stress

How might we reduce the daily stress that comes with the territory of being human? One of the best ways is to devote a short period, morning and evening, to devotionals. The Workbook of ACIM is certainly a way to learn how to do this. When we touch base with God on a regular basis, we find that we are conscious of His Presence when our minds are on the things of this world. This is the best way that I know to “self-control” fear.

Prayer:

Dear Father,

May I be free of fear. May I have help with the conditions that bring the fear about. And may I be guided in how to control my fear.

I pray for Jesus’s help in my life. He promises this to me. May I turn to him and to the Holy Spirit for the help that I so much need.

Amen.

The Correction of Fear Is Your Responsibility. When You Ask for Release from Fear, You Are Implying that It Is Not.

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“The correction of fear is your responsibility. When you ask for release from fear, you are implying that it is not. You should ask, instead, for help in the conditions that have brought the fear about. (T29)”

Affirmation: “help in the conditions that have brought the fear about”

Reflections:

1 – A Sequence of Thoughts

These three sentences, and the order in which they appear, are a very important sequence. We may feel that the correction of fear is beyond what we can do, but this passage says not. We can get help, though, in the slightly different matter of the “conditions” that brought the fear about. For that we ask for help, and rightly so. And when we ask, we receive.

2 – Cause and Effect

Jesus says elsewhere that if he were to remove the fear for us, he would be tampering with a most important aspect of reality, cause and effect. We have to take responsibility for what we have made in this world, and fear is one of those things that the ego has made. It is not real, but we don’t realize this when we are in throes.

3 – Personal Experience

I have not always taken kindly to this assertion of Jesus. I have thought, previously, that if a minor tranquillizer could remove anxiety, how is this OK to be effective when Jesus himself does not help directly (as he says he won’t)? The reason is that the Valium or Xanax is a magic potion, but a pill that is quite in line with what we might do in our fear-weakened state. Jesus does not directly encourage pills, but he does say that sometimes we have to take an oblique approach to illness and let medication do its work. He indicates, though, that pills are a form of magic or magical approach to our ailments.

4 – Conditions

The most important thing to remember is that Jesus will help with the conditions that have brought the fear about, and this is a very close thing to helping directly with the fear. And it does not tamper with the effect that we have wrought when we made a cause that brought the anxiety upon us. We do have the power to handle anxiety, and prayer and meditation are among our most potent tools in our tool kit. Jesus walks beside us, when we call for him (“a single unequivocal call” from the Text of A Course in Miracles), and this in itself is frequently enough to take the agitation from us. It has proved to be enough for me on any number of occasions.

5 – Pivotal

The matter of conditions is pivotal. There is always an (insane) reason that we feel fearful. We don’t need to understand insanity, but we do need to leave it behind, and this passage notes that the help we need in leaving insanity behind is there for the asking. Indeed, we cannot understand insanity, for it is beyond reason, being irrational. Remember that the ego approves of our analyzing our conditions, as this seems to lean credence to the importance of the ego. Let such analysis drop by the wayside. It will get us nowhere. Instead, we need to note madness when we see it, and then quietly let it go.

6 – Fearful Thoughts = Madness

Fearful thoughts are always a form of madness, the form in which most of us live in this world the vast majority of the time. Until we willingly leave fear behind and return to love consistently, we will be afraid periodically. Can this be something we want to keep?

7 – Our Power

It is very reassuring to hear from Jesus in ACIM that we have the power to remove fear. Our minds are very powerful and never rest, even in sleep (from ACIM). We do not normally credit the mind with such power because we are afraid of this power (also from ACIM). But we need not fear our own minds when we have willingly laid down our own judgment and turned to the Holy Spirit for His help. He will guide us surely. More than surely. It is one of His functions, and He will not neglect His functions. We do not know all the conditions that surround us–past, present, and future–and so we would choose wrongly. Turn to one who does have this prescience. And life will smooth out. I know this for a fact.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I leave fear behind. This sometimes seems impossible to me, but You have promised that I can do so.

May I have the help that You have promised with the conditions that have brought the fear about. Then my fear is self-controlled, which is what Jesus asks me to do.

Amen.

The Only Remedy for Lack of Love Is Perfect Love

“Know first that this is fear.
Fear arises from lack of love.
The only remedy for lack of love is perfect love.
Perfect love is the Atonement. (T30)”

Affirmation: “The only remedy for lack of love is perfect love.”

Reflections:

1 – Poetry

This is another beautiful blank verse poem from the Course. It is also a syllogism, which Jesus seems to appreciate a great deal, for he uses syllogisms from time to time throughout A Course in Miracles.

2 – Fear and Love

It is unlikely that we will understand this poem completely without reading our way through the entire ACIM. Basically, the poem refers to the fact that the only two emotions are fear and love, and that only lack of love makes fear. And even when we have studied diligently, the poem works as a Zen koan, always teasing us out of thought.

3 – Atonement

The Atonement is a shift in perception that allows us to see that we are actually innocent children of God. Heretofore we have believed that we were guilty of black sins that will require retribution. Throughout A Course in Miracles, we learn that reaching perfect love is the ultimate end of our journey here. Knowing only love, we will fear no longer. This too is the Awakening.

4 – Love and a Call for Love

This blank verse poem also calls to mind the admonition in ACIM that only love and a call for love really exist, because fear (being of the ego) is an illusion. We can forgive other people, especially our significant others, by remembering that their anger and attack (never justified, as explained elsewhere in ACIM) are always “distress that rests on error” (from the Text of ACIM). Also, anger and attack are madness, the madness of which we all partake until we see the real world and we experience Awakening. Recognizing insanity is all of us can be a decision that helps us get through the day. We would not blame severely a person acting out of mental illness, even if the deeds were lamentable, and all of us have elements of madness in us. We need therefore to reject fear as unwanted vestiges of the ego in us, and turn to our best expression of love. We need to forgive, even when what has happened does not appear to deserve forgiveness. It does deserve forgiveness, for all actions and thoughts are innocent; we have been guilty of nothing, for we live an illusion, and God’s Sons and Daughters are only sometimes mistaken in their choices. We should not hold an error against anyone. And errors are all that the ego perpetuates, and which of us can say that the ego has really died? Only the Awakened, and this percentage is very tiny in our world.

Prayer:

Dear Father,

When I find the day hard-going, may I realize that my love is imperfect. Imperfect love makes for a bad day.

May I find the perfect love that You have promised all of your children. May I leave fear behind as I find this perfect love.

I have long sought to see the ego wither away in me, but it is still there, because I do still feel anxiety–a form of fear. Help me to remain calm and at peace today, for I know that the test of perfect peace is evidence that I am listening to You. Thank You for being there in the middle of the night when I am agitated. Things always look better in the daylight. May I take the light of Your day into every 24/7.

Amen.

Fundamental Error: that Fear Can Be Mastered. The Only Real Mastery Is through Love.

“We have already attempted to correct the fundamental error that fear can be mastered, and have emphasized that the only real mastery is through love. . . .You may think this implies that an enormous amount of time is necessary between readiness and mastery, but let me remind you that time and space are under my control. (T33)”

Affirmation: “only real mastery is through love”

Reflections:

1 – Mastery through Love

This is one of Jesus’s great promises in A Course in Miracles: that fear can be mastered by love (and only by love). I know this first hand, though I have as yet had only glimpses of Awakening that I did not sustain. I know that when I have let all grievances go, I know that I am safe (from the Workbook). And when I know that I am safe, I do not feel fear. And it is my love for others, especially significant others (past and present) that gives me the wherewithal to forgive what has not happened, for we live in illusion. Pardon is totally justified due to this. Nothing has ever really hurt us except in illusions, the maya of Eastern religions.

2 – Time and Space

The final sentence also states a truth that we would be wise to accept at face value, though perhaps it is early yet to recognize the miracles that the sentence represents. Isn’t it wonderful to think that Jesus has such power that time and space are under his control? But he would not demand that we believe this yet, while we are not yet sure of miracles. It might help our belief if we stop to realize, often, that we live in an illusion. Dreams can be manipulated, even by ourselves, when we dream them in sleep. So it is not so very far from credulity that Jesus, the Ascended, could manipulate time and space to aid us in our “journey without distance” (from the Text of A Course in Miracles).

3 – Learn how to Love

We must learn to love if we are to be happy, for who can remain happy while intermittently experiencing pangs of fear? A Course in Miracles is the way that many of us have chosen to learn how to love, how to live a better way. It is a beginning, a way home for those of us who follow diligently its guidance. Early in the Text, Jesus tells us abundant willingness and great patience are needed for learning. And that revelation can occasionally reveal the end to us. I have personally had that revelation. The end is Awakening, which I have not sustained. But the glimpses that I have had–once for a summer, once for six months–sustain me through more difficult times and assure me that all of us will eventually reach the good outcome. In the meantime, I aim for patience and willingness to learn (and this learning, according to A Course of Love, is now through observation, not intense study).

4 – Mastery of Fear

The time between readiness and mastery of fear does not, as implied by this passage, have to be lengthy. It is true that it may be lengthy, but elsewhere Jesus recommends that we be content to walk the pathway, even if the way seems long to us. I have, in my own experience, found that the time has indeed been lengthy, though I have known periods of great calm and peace, without any fear at all. I see my own limitations as the reason for the fact that the mastery of fear through love is taking so long. Jesus says in ACIM that here we are not meant to be without limitations, but we are to overcome them when and where we can (a paraphrase).

5 – Sometimes Time Moves Fast

It is not always long. Many people find themselves at home in God within a few days or weeks of reading ACIM. When this happens, we have experienced a revelation of the end. And the revelation may not last. Yet we will take away from the experience our certainty, also given us by Jesus, that once the way is begun, the end is certain. A Course in Miracles then becomes our pathway home.

Prayer:

Dear Father,

May we see Jesus control time and space in our world. Even when we do not understand this, may we realize that what he has promised is real–more real than the things of this world. May I suspend doubt and let my mind play with this concept. It is indeed a great blessing.

May we master fear by love. We know that this is the only way. May we feel the love that You have placed in our hearts. When we feel this love, however briefly, and we abandon resentments, we feel safe and therefore fearless.

Be with me today as I seek to follow Your way. I know myself, and so I know that I will stumble and fall, but I ask that You walk beside me and help me back up, each time that I fall. May I keep the words, “distress that rests on error,” keenly in my mind as I react to individuals who are pursued by their demons. The anger that I sometimes hear is actually a call for help, as Jesus tells us in the chapter on forgiveness in ACIM. May I recognize any and all calls for help today, and rush to the side of the one doing the calling.

Amen.

When Everything You Retain Is Lovable, There Is No Reason for Fear to Remain with You. This Is Your Part in the Atonement.

“When everything you retain is lovable, there is no reason for fear to remain with you. This is your part in the Atonement. (T35)”

Affirmation: “retain the lovable”

Reflections:

1 – When Love Is Complete

Here is the idea that we keep finding again and again in A Course in Miracles. When love is complete, fear is abandoned. But how do we abandon fear? We listen to what Jesus has told us in ACIM. That is primary for those of us who have chosen ACIM as our lodestone. Prayer helps. Meditation helps (though some do not believe that ACIM teaches meditation, yet the final lessons in the Workbook are meditative in content). Study helps, study of ACIM and A Course of Love. The final way that love is chosen, once and for all, is by what we are heading toward–Awakening. In the meantime, we can relinquish ourselves to the Holy Spirit, whose contribution is great, while we ourselves are actually asked to do very little (from ACIM). We are even told that we don’t understand why the Holy Spirit’s contribution should be so great, when ours is so small. How can this be? We are weak, but He is strong. And His guidance is what leads us home, to Awakening. We cannot do it ourselves.

2 – Abandoning

We ourselves do this abandoning of fear when we realize that the only reality is that of love. Of course, anxiety can still overcome anywhere along the way. That is the way of this world, and we have not abandoned it entirely–just yet. We are still very much a part of the egoic system. But we are destined to leave the ego behind, and when we let all grievances go, according to the Workbook, we will know that we are perfectly safe. This sense of safety will do a very great deal to abandon fear, for which of us is so strong as to be fearless in the face of threatening events. When we give up resentments (grievances), we will know, finally, that we are safe. So there is no need for fear.

3- Love

Love then becomes our way into the Atonement. Atonement is the shifting of our perception to that of a love-centered world. The Awakening then follows.

4 – Help from the Holy Spirit

We must ask for the help of the Holy Spirit to retain only what is lovable in our world. We cannot do this by an ego-centered self, and only the real Self, informed by guidance, can effect this change. The tenets of A Course of Love are particularly appropriate as we seek to discover what this Self, this Christ Self, holds out as promises to us. I counsel guidance as the way home, and this guidance will direct us very specifically (from the Manual of ACIM). We will be told all that we need to do (also from ACIM). Is this not eminently better than trying, in vain, to listen to our own judgment? We can never know all that affects past, present, and future, and so it is foreordained that we would choose awry. But there is One with us who does know. And He is the Holy Spirit. Let us give up judgment today, and walk into the sunlight with Him.

5 – Atonement

Atonement is a concept much misunderstood, with meaning that is much sought. One of the most visited postings for this blog is the one entitled, “The Meaning of Atonement.” We have heard the traditional concepts from traditional Christianity, and we wonder what A Course in Miracles has to say to us. We need simply to rest in Jesus’ promises, for he is not wrong. We are justified when we rest in Atonement. We are headed home. We need only give up fear for what is lovable. But sometimes what a daunting task this seems to us! Turn over any anxiety to the One who knows how to quell our fear. Turn over our fear to the Holy Spirit. And we ourselves need to love only, though this too is not easily understood. How do we love only? We forgive that which has not happened in reality. We forgive illusions, and we forgive our brother/sister of his/her distress based on error (from ACIM). When we understand why our significant others, in error, bait us, we are a long way toward the forgiveness that will take us home.

Prayer:

Dear Father,

Help me to retain only what is lovable in this world and worlds beyond. When I retain only what is lovable, I leave fear behind. Surely this is motivation.

May we accept the Atonement for ourselves. Jesus has said that this is our only real purpose in this world. So much follows from this acceptance, and we welcome our brothers and sisters with a new, abiding love.

May I have a good day. I pray this prayer so often, but I need to pray it today. Today will be long, with many activities. Keep fear from me as stress undoubtedly will arise. And I am never fearful, angry or attacking, lest stress rears its ugly head. I ask that stress not rear its ugly head today.

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.

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.

What Would Mary Do?

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

Affirmation: “I would leave fear behind today.”

Reflections:

1 – Fear

Fear is our great enemy, but if we dwell on this fact too long and deeply, we will scare ourselves, making the ego strong. And the ego is strong when one is fearful. Let us leave behind this state of affairs today.

2 – When Baited

Let us proceed toward love. This means that we need to make a decision about how we will react when we are baited by those closest to us. We must determine what we will say and do, ahead of time, or we are likely to attack or otherwise react with anger.

3 – Personal Experience

I have found that the easiest way to handle a difficult conversation is to say a reminder, just the word “gentle,” followed by the question, “What would Mary do?” By “Mary,” I mean the mother of Jesus, a woman given great importance in A Course of Love (though not in A Course in Miracles). This immediately puts me in a conciliatory state of mind. I tried the phrase, “quiet control,” but I found that it tended to put me in an uptight attitude, just the reverse of what I wanted.

4 – Communion with God

You will find other words, or perhaps none, just a communion with God. Many of us do need words that help us in times of difficulty.

5 – Proceed toward Love

I would proceed toward love always with those closest to me. And this movement will take me into the Christ/Self, sooner rather than later. We need to move toward the Christ Self, because if the ego is gone, which Jesus says it is, we need to have a replacement in mind to whom we can turn.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank You for giving me the words, “What would Mary do?,” when I am stressed, in a difficult conversation, when I am being baited. There is no reason that I can’t keep my cool, except a lack of discipline. And You would have me be gentle with all those with whom I come in contact.

I would proceed toward love today, away from fear. I have tried this many times, but perhaps not strongly enough, because anxiety dogs my steps from time to time. I would make a determination today to slow down and relax, to meditate when I can.

I never get angry unless I am stressed. May I remember this today.

Amen.

No Reason to Be Afraid

monet - japanese bridge2“The Christ in you has no need to plan. A need to come to know. . .yes. But a need to plan. . .no. The Christ in you needs not for you to choose a lesson plan, but to let life itself be your chosen way of learning. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Nature of Unity and Its Recognition, 10.19)”

Affirmation: “May I do no planning today.”

Reflections:

1 – No Need to Plan

Jesus warns against planning, first, in A Course in Miracles. In a little-known section of ACIM, he indicates that the way to lose one’s way to salvation is to attack, to judge, and to plan against contingencies to come (unless planning has been informed by the Holy Spirit). We can recognize that all three of these–attack, judging, and planning–are defenses against an uncertain future, a future that we don’t want to be uncertain. We are scared.

2 – Fear the Future?

But do we really have to fear the future? If we are dreaming the happy dreams that the Holy Spirit brings, we will walk a smooth path. And, in A Course of Love, the dreams give way to (at least) glimpses of reality. Mari Perron, who channeled ACOL, believes that in the time of Christ we are no longer living dreams. She believes that we thrust into the real world, as indicated by ACIM as well as the “reality” of ACOL. If so, we really do not need to choose the defense of planning. We do not need to make a lesson plan out of our lives. We just need to live our lives and therein to learn from our lives.

3 – Learn through Life

So we are to learn through life itself. Actually, has not this always been the case? Many spiritual writings, though not all, believe that we are in a school room on earth. Psychic writers have said this as well. (Notably, Neale Donald Walsch in Conversations with God does not see the earth as a school room.) Whether or not we are actually in school is not a question with which we need to preoccupy ourselves. We do not need to let theology delay us, for all of us will never agree on theological points.

4 – Next Step

We do need the universal experience, though, and that is life itself. We do not give up planning entirely, if we have to catch a plane, for example (as detailed by Eckhart Tolle in a CD entitled “Even the Sun Will Die”). But we do not make sweeping generalizations about our life’s course. The next step is really what we need to know. And that next step will enter our minds unfailingly when we ask for guidance, either from the Holy Spirit (if one is following A Course in Miracles) or the Self/Christ (if one is following A Course of Love).

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would realize today that my fears have always been ungrounded. What I need to know comes to me in the moment, not from extensive defensive planning. I do not have to be afraid of anything. Even if the worst that I contemplate comes to pass, You are here for me. And that is all that I really need to know.

Be with me today as I seek to leave social anxieties behind. And all other anxieties as well.

There is no reason to be afraid. May I never lose sight of this truth.

Amen

Special Relationships

“Once you are no longer concerned with needs and the meeting of needs you will no longer be concerned with special relationships. You will realize that there is no loss but only gain involved in letting them go. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Nature of Unity and Its Recognition, 9.16)”

Affirmation: “I will let my special relationships go in favor of the holy.”

Reflections:

1 – Needs Met

Is it really true that we won’t have to worry about needs any longer? Indeed so. Our needs are met at the point of need as we progress toward Home. And Jesus assures us that we have arrived. I think that this is his way of encouraging us to stop seeking. We can read and reread favorite inspirational messages, but our way Home is assured.

2 – Longing

We still long for special relationships, because we do not want to be alone, and our significant relationships are, to us, the best place to go for solace. This is egoic thinking. We do not have to listen to our egos any longer. We will be free of the ego when we have turned outside from fearful thoughts.

3 – Ego

Yesterday I indicated, based on the passage from A Course of Love, that turning aside from fear did in fact eliminate the ego from our thinking. This transition seems hard to us, because we have thrived on fear, even invited it. But this was the egoic mind in full force. We need to realize that this part of our belief about ourselves, the ego, is eliminated when we make a concerted effort to choose anew every time that we are tempted to do the egotistical thing (an interpretation, not stated in ACIM or ACOL). When we turn aside from egotistical thinking, we also turn aside from fear, for fear is activated by the down cycle of the egoic oscillations. We have known flights of joy, but these soon turn to pain and even suffering–when in the throes of the egoic mind. Surely we want something better for ourselves now.

4 – Holy Relationship

Choose holy relationships over special. Or, as we are encouraged to do in A Course in Miracles, turn the special relationship into the holy. We may feel that our relationships are disjointed during this period, but it will be the very best thing for us. We can choose no higher, unless it be a choice for God Himself.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would turn all of my special relationships into holy ones. I start with my chosen significant other and fan out from that one. I can do this, for You will help. I know, if I follow guidance, that this is Your way for me. Having holy relationships, or in particular one holy relationship, is my primary way home.

I would not be fearful today, for fear feeds the ego. And I would not allow my mind to dip into egotistical thoughts, for this is the essence of what goes wrong for me. Help me to reach out to You for solace. And may I not forget others in my search. We all need each other, and we need each other to eliminate fear and to be peaceful and harmonious.

Amen

Starve the Ego-Mind Out of Existence

pissarro - landscape“What is food for the ego-mind is fear and the removal of these final fears will quite literally starve the ego-mind out of existence. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Nature of Unity and Its Recognition, 9.15)”

Affirmation: “I would remove fear from my mind today.”

Reflections:

1 – Identical Questions

How do we rid ourselves of fear? How do we put the ego-mind out of existence? These two questions are actually identical, for with the one comes the other.

2 – Quiet Inner State

I have found that a quiet inner state steals the thunder from fear. I get fearful, angry, and anxious, only when I am stressed. And when this overwrought state is removed by contemplation, quietness, and sometimes meditation, then I see that the conflict-ridden ego just drops away.

3 – Timeout

But when I am overwrought, God cannot get through to me immediately, when I ask for His presence. My ego-mind has risen, and I must turn aside from this ego-mind if I am to have peace. Mostly I need to stop and take a timeout. While this is not always possible, it is possible to turn inwardly, through affirmations, to still the mind. Stilling the mind reduces the anger and the desire for attack, and soon all is well.

4 – Marianne Williamson

We tend to want to keep an aroused state going. We run on adrenaline. And this is not way to run a life. Marianne Williamson says that we are addicted to adrenaline. And she is right. We think that we would lose our edge in this sometimes competitive world if we became too laid back. But a Type B personality would do just that–take it easy and stop the frantic chase after success. For what is success anyway but a question of the ego?

5 – Keep a List

We need to starve the ego out of existence. And to do so we need to keep lists of things to do when we are fearful. Turning to our personal list will calm the mind. Sometimes we need to write out this list, for when we are too overwrought to think clearly. Other times we don’t have to resort to paper and pencil, but will call to mind what we need when we need it. And all will be well.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would be calm and peaceful today, easy to live with, easy to live with for others as well as myself. I would thereby quite literally starve the ego-mind out of existence. I would feel fear no more, and it is fear that feeds the ego. I would cease any and all competition, choosing cooperation as the better means to get things done. And my goals should be met just as well from cooperation as from competition–in fact, the meeting of goals from cooperation with others actualy works far better.

Help me to have a good day. Help my brothers and sisters to have a good day. We need You, and when Your are present, so that we sense You, then the day smooths out and all is well. Thank You.

Amen