Tag Archives: kindness

Our Love Is Not in Vain

“Think not that these are senseless questions, made to bring love and pain together and there to leave you unaided and unhelped, for pain and love kept together in this way makes no sense, and yet makes the greatest sense of all. These questions merely prove love’s value. What else do you value more?” (ACOL, C:3.21)

Senseless questions are not real questions, and they don’t accomplish anything in this world. But Jesus asks questions full of sense, questions asking where we are going from where we have been, questions that ask us to take another look at true reality. And when we do take another look at true reality, what do we find but a world enveloped in God’s love?

We don’t value anything above love, though we may, in egoic clutches, reach for those things that will hurt us. True love never hurts. Only egoic special love does that. True love is abundantly kind, above all else.

We all remember the drama of special relationships that we thought were true love. My, how we remember that! But, if we are lucky, that special relationship will morph into a holy relationship, and our hurt will subside. We will know that our beloved is after the same thing that we are—true love, which knows only peace. And kindness. The Dalai Lama once said that kindness was his religion. And surely we can understand what he is trying to say. A kind demeanor for the world is sure to bring more kindness in its wake. And we will know, for a sure thing, that our love has not been in vain.

All Your Past except Its Beauty Is Gone. I Have Saved All Your Kindnesses and Every Loving Thought You Ever Had.

“How can you who are so holy suffer? All your past except its beauty is gone, and nothing is left but a blessing. I have saved all your kindnesses and every loving thought you ever had. (T83)”

Affirmation: “I have saved all your kindnesses and love.”

Reflections:

1 – Difficult Passage

This is a hard passage to understand. It is true that Awakened individuals acknowledge feeling pain, but not suffering. Eckhart Tolle (The Power of Now; A New Earth) is one of these individuals. He says that since his Awakening some 30 years ago, no thought has brought him pain. But most of us have not yet known Awakening on a sustained basis, and what are we to do when bad things happen?

2 – Holy Spirit

I think that the Answer is the one we so often find in the Course. The Answer is turning to guidance from the Holy Spirit. Jesus himself says in this passage that he has saved our kindnesses and loving thoughts. We can, without self-satisfaction, realize that, almost despite ourselves, we have had moments of kindnesses and loving thoughts. If these were ever a comfort to our brother, they can also be a comfort to us in our times of pain. This recollection will help to ensure that suffering, even in the midst of pain, will not arise.

3 – Purification

“I have purified them [kindnesses and loving thoughts] of the errors that hid their light, and kept them for you in their own perfect radiance. They are beyond destruction and beyond guilt. They came from the Holy Spirit within you, and we know what God creates is eternal. (T83)”

What a good thought! We have within us many good things, things that we hid when we did not live in the light. The Holy Spirit or the Christ Self thus knows only kindnesses and loving thoughts. May we be so fortunate, sooner rather than later.

4 – No Struggle

The Holy Spirit or the Christ Self (the latter described in A Course of Love), inwardly, does make these adjustments for us. We no longer have to struggle to be good. Indeed, we ought not to so struggle. Our redemption is sure. Jesus has seen to that in the resurrection (which is never disclaimed in either A Course in Miracles or A Course of Love, though I would postulate that we are talking about Jesus in his ethereal body as the resurrection).

5 – Ego

We have a problem with our egos in this matter of seeing ourselves as possessing kindnesses and loving thoughts. We are never good enough for the ego, and if we think that we are (even when thinking in an egoless state of mind), we are warned by the ego that we are arrogant. But Jesus assures us that it is the ego that is arrogant only. Once we have let the ego wither away, on its way away, then we can be certain that the good things said about us have more truth than formerly. It is the ego that is the bogeyman here. Avoid egoistic thinking, and the bane of our existence, the ego, will be undone.

6 – Satan

The ego is indeed the devil of our mythology.

7 – Pain

If we are still not above suffering, we can find in the pain a blessing. The initial passage in this posting seems to say this. The passage also notes that we ourselves are holy, a concept that we find difficult to accept, because we usually feel so unworthy. May we take Jesus at his word, and believe that we do not have to suffer in this world. As we study A Course in Miracles, perhaps we will come to see this concept more clearly and to feel pain, when it comes, but no suffering.

8 – Peace of God

“I place the peace of God in your heart and in your hands, to hold and share. (T83)”

This is Jesus speaking. We are so early in ACIM at this point that Jesus has not yet made the role of the Holy Spirit explicit. So he has us turn to him.

9 – Jesus Holding Our Hands

Indeed, he never neglects or abandons us. He is always available to hold our hands in our imagination. May this image walk with us today.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I know in my innermost being that I do not need to suffer. In the Course, Jesus says that we do not have to learn through pain. May I feel the truth of this reassurance.

It is good that my loving thoughts have been saved. This seems to mean that my unloving thoughts will fall away. Thank you.

Be with me today as I seek to live an egoless life, an egoless existence. If I falter, please set my foot back on my pathway to You. I specifically ask that the impediments to Awakening be removed, for it is only these impediments that make You realize that I am not yet ready. I do not try to merit Awakening, for that is beyond what can be done. I ask only for patience to run the race set before me.

Amen.

Do Not Turn Pain into Suffering

“How can you who are so holy suffer?  All your past except its beauty is gone, and nothing is left but a blessing.  I have saved all your kindnesses and every loving thought you ever had.  (T83)”

Affirmation:  “I have saved all your kindnesses and love.”

Reflections:

1 – Suffer?

This is a hard passage to understand.  It is true that Awakened individuals acknowledge feeling pain, but not suffering.  Eckhart Tolle is one of these individuals.  But most of us have not yet known Awakening on a sustained basis, and what are we to do when bad things happen?

2 – Think Kindness

I think that the Answer is the one we so often find in the Course.  The Answer is turning to guidance from the Holy Spirit.  Jesus himself says in this passage that he has saved our kindnesses and loving thoughts.  We can, without self-satisfaction, realize that, almost despite ourselves, we have had moments of kindnesses and loving thoughts.  If these were ever a comfort to our brother, they can also be a comfort to us in our times of pain.  This recollection will help to ensure that suffering, even in the midst of  pain, will not arise.

3 – Pain but No Suffering

We can find in the pain a blessing.  The passage seems to say this.   The passage also notes that we ourselves are holy, a concept that we find difficult to accept, because we usually feel so unworthy.  May we take Jesus at his word, and believe that we do not have to suffer in this world.  As we study the Course, perhaps we will come to see this concept more clearly and to feel pain, when it comes, but no suffering.

4 – Difficulty in Avoiding Suffering

We need to realize that we transform pain into suffering by our own thought processes.  Certainly in physical pain, it is hard not to get the mind involved.  We feel so bad physically that our bodies temporarily seem to take over our minds.  Whatever we do, in this world there probably will never be one correct action to take–other than asking for the Holy Spirit to give us the guidance that we need to remedy the situation.  He will answer, though if we are agitated, we may not “hear” what He has to say.  Seek calm and quiet, not agitation, and see how much more readily the physical pain ceases to be an affliction that can only be called “suffering.”

Prayer:

Dear Father,

May I know in my innermost being that I do not need to suffer.  In the Course, Jesus says that we do not have to learn through pain.  May I feel the truth of this reassurance.

It is good that my loving thoughts have been saved.  This seems to mean that my unloving thoughts will fall away.  Thank you.

Amen.

Dream of Your Brother’s Kindnesses. . .

“Dream of your brother’s kindnesses instead of dwelling in your dreams on his mistakes.  Select his thoughtfulness to dream about instead of counting up the hurts he gave.  Forgive him his illusions, and give thanks to him for all the helpfulness he gave.  And do not brush aside his many gifts because he is not perfect in your dreams.  He represents his Father, Whom you see as offering both life and death to you. (T585)”

Affirmation:  “dream of your brother’s kindnesses”

 

Reflections:

1 – How We See God

The final sentence in the above passage is pivotal.  As long as we are caught in the ego, we will see our brother as offering both life and death to us, because we see God the same way.  This idea is startling when we are new to A Course in Miracles.  Do we really see God as offering both life and death to us?  We probably never thought this way before reading ACIM.

2 – We See God in Our Brother

We see God in our brother, though we are not usually aware of this.  When we progress, we gradually realize that God offers only life, and then our brother’s significance to us becomes clearer and more benign.  This helps, I hope, to explain the meaning of the “life and death” statement about God (an interpretation, not stated in ACIM).

3 – Our Intimate Relationships

The earlier portions of this passage help a good deal in our intimate relationships.  We can choose what to fantasize, what to think, about our loved ones.  We can think of the times that we have been disappointed or hurt, or we can dwell on those times of happiness, when our brother has been all that we might wish in a loved one.  The obvious choice, for happiness, is to choose to focus on the good aspects of our relationships.  And certainly this is valuable.  Jesus does not negate happiness; it is one of several functions that he says in ACIM are important for us.  (Other functions are salvation and forgiveness.)

4 – Our Brother Has Only Made Mistakes

Note that the more negative times with our brother have signified his mistakes, not his real self.  We may also see that we contributed to the situation by our own mistakes.  But the Course stresses that mistakes, once recognized, will be corrected, because we will desire to correct them.  We will dream of happiness rather than sadness.

5 – Dreams of Happiness

And when we dream of happiness, in the dreams brought to us by the Holy Spirit, we are happy.  And is this not a powerful motivator?

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would think of my beloved ones only in a good light.  I would not dwell on the times that I have been disappointed in the way that they treated me.  I would dwell on kindnesses only.

Help me to think of this passage when the day seems long, I am stressed, and my significant others say things that upset me, leading me to feel angry.   Anger is not justified, as I know.  We live in an insane world, and we are part of that insanity until we change our minds.  Help me to change my mind today, and help the others in my intimate circle change their minds when they are prepared to do so by You.

I would think only of kindnesses today.  I would not fly off the handle at a perceived slight.  There is always a reason for a perceived slight, and it is always forgivable.  I would forgive today, as You have indicated I ought to do.  Help me to lead a calm and tranquil life today, and then I know that all will be well.

Thank You for always being there for me.

Amen.

Dream of Your Brother’s Kindnesses

“Dream of your brother’s kindnesses instead of dwelling in your dreams on his mistakes.  Select his thoughtfulness to dream about instead of counting up the hurts he gave.  Forgive him his illusions, and give thanks to him for all the helpfulness he gave.  And do not brush aside his many gifts because he is not perfect in your dreams.  He represents his Father, Whom you see as offering both life and death to you. (T585)”

Affirmation:  “I dream of kindnesses.”

Reflections:

1 – How We See God

The final sentence in the above passage is pivotal; we see God as offering both life and death to us, and we think that it is our brother (or sister).   In other words, as long as we are caught in the ego, we will see our brother as offering both life and death to us, because we see God the same way.  We see God in our brother, though we are not usually aware of this.  When we progress, we gradually realize that God offers only life, and then our brother’s significance to us becomes clearer and more benign.

2 – Intimate Relationships

The earlier portions of this passage help a good deal in our intimate relationships.  We can choose what to fantasize, what to think, about our loved ones.  We can think of the times that we have been disappointed or hurt, or we can dwell on those times of happiness, when our brother has been all that we might wish in a loved one.  The obvious choice, for happiness, is to choose to focus on the good aspects of our relationships.

3 – Overlook Mistakes

Note that the more negative times with our brother have signified his mistakes, not his real self.  We may also see that we contributed to the situation by our own mistakes.  But the Course stresses that mistakes, once recognized, will be corrected, because we will desire to correct them.  We will dream of happiness rather than sadness.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I forgive totally all that I have not yet forgiven of my brothers and sisters who, I think in my weaker moments, have mistreated me.  I realize that there is no other way to You.  And there is not value in clinging to grievances.  I will know that I am safe when I have given up all grievances.  I would know that I am safe today.

May I dream, in my illusory world, of all that my brothers and sisters have done that is right.  May I recall to mind the good times, the times when we were very close and all was well.  May I never dip into negative thoughts that I do not immediately forgive myself for this irrationality.  There is no better way to approach You than through my holy relationships to my brothers and sisters.  It is the way to You, the salvation that A Course in Miracles counsels.  May I never forget this.

I am not so advanced that I am free of dipping into negative thoughts about my loved ones, my closest relationships.  But help me to realize that this is my most important task, to let go the negativity and turn to You for the guidance of what to do next.  And You will always counsel forgiveness, because nothing has gone wrong in the real world.  It has all been illusion, my dream.

Amen.