Tag Archives: kingdom of heaven

Kingdom of Heaven Is Within

It is difficult to understand what ‘The Kingdom of Heaven is within you’ means. The reason is because it is not understandable to the ego, which interprets it as if something outside is inside, which does not mean anything. The word ‘within’ does not belong. The Kingdom of Heaven is you. What else but you did the Creator create, ad what else but you is His Kingdom? This is the whole message of the Atonement, a message which in its totality transcends the sum of the parts (as we have said about the sonship before).” (ACIM, COA ed., T-4.V.1:1-6)

“The Kingdom of Heaven is you.” Yes, we are the children of God, created out of “God-stuff,” and constituting His Kingdom. The Whole differentiated into parts so that experiencing could proceed forward. When the Godhead knows the All, experiencing is not really possible, because, knowing all, there is nothing left to be discovered. So we, His children, fall into ignorance in this world, experiencing all the time in part, sometimes intuiting the Whole, Who is God Himself/Herself.

This scenario takes care of our yearning to know more and more of God. We accept our finite mind, and we rest in the assurance that the Mind encompasses us, keeping us safe, getting us out of jams that we collect like fireflies. God as the Infinite knows how to extricate us from that which we made ill-advisedly. And so we would be wise to listen to the Holy Spirit or the Christ-Self to know how to proceed in this sometimes confusing world.

We need to drop the ego. We have said this many times to ourselves, but perhaps we don’t know where to begin. Don’t resist the ego, for the ego becomes strong in strife. Just turn aside gently, avoiding that which calls to the egotistical and egoic in us.

This will be enough. Over time, the ego will simply wither away as a bad idea. The ego is, as Jesus defines it in A Course in Miracles, a false idea of what we are, a false persona. He does not use the term ego as Freud did, when Freud wanted us to form a strong ego as we matured so that we would be ready to meet life’s challenges. Jesus’ concept of the ego is this falsity, and we know that falsity is nothing that we need or want. When we embody the soul, we are embodying the whole of ourselves, what Freud was really trying to get at when he defined “ego.”

Our persona is informed by the Christ who is within. When we turn to this self, we are turning to what will work as we travel through this land.

The Kingdom of Heaven is You. What Else but You Did the Creator Create, and What Else but You Is His Kingdom?

1 – Understandable?

“It is hard to understand what ‘The Kingdom of Heaven is within you’ really means. This is because it is not understandable to the ego, which interprets it as if something outside is inside, and this does not mean anything. The word ‘within’ is unnecessary. The Kingdom of Heaven is you. What else but you did the Creator create, and what else but you is His Kingdom? (T60)”

2 – Not “Within You” – But “You”

Here Jesus clarifies a quotation from the New Testament: The Kingdom of Heaven is “within” you, but this becomes, in A Course of Miracles, that Kingdom of Heaven “is” you. This interpretation is theological, and we need to be careful about theology—not to let it divide us as students of ACIM. But, for those who are interested, I think that this means, essentially, that we are the body of Christ, or of God, that God does not stand outside His creation, but that the All is He. This differs from traditional Christianity, which sees all that is created as God’s handiwork, and sees God as standing apart from His creation. Here Jesus affirms, “What else but you did the Creator create, and what else but you is His Kingdom?”

3 – God Stuff

The “stuff” of the universe—the totality of all universe(s)—is thus seen to be God stuff. There are worlds upon worlds, much beyond what we can understand. But out of the void, the First Mover moved, knowing that He did not want to be alone. Joseph Campbell gives ancient myths that help to see this dynamic, metaphorically. The Void, that is God, felt fear upon realizing that He was alone. But then He said, “What do I have to fear? There is only Me.” Then he felt lonely, and so He decided to create from within His “body.” And from the undifferentiated Mass of His Body, He created the All that exists. And He is still creating.

4 – Prime Mover

This explanation is a very rudimentary form of explanation, something that we can hold to when we wonder about the Prime Mover, God Himself. It is not the truth, for our minds are too tiny to understand the truth, but metaphorically it answers some of our questions. The “you” in the following question is the One, the All, “What else did the Creator create?”

5 – Tiny, Mad Idea

So we move to the tiny, mad idea that we allowed to happen in our holy minds, the One that was the All, and then seemed to separate:

“You project onto the ego the decision to separate, and this conflicts with the love you feel for the ego because you made it. No love in this world is without this ambivalence, and since no ego has experienced love without ambivalence the concept is beyond its understanding. (T61)”

We thought that we would be controlled too much if we allowed God to direct us. We thought that All should not be One, that to express ourselves demanded diversity. And so the Whole fragmented. And the ego, part of our belief about ourselves—nothing more—separated. Even this was an illusion, for we cannot separate from our Essence, which is God. But we could think that we had, and in the thinking, God could experience with us what He is really like. We head ultimately to being Co-Creators with Him. But right now we are caught in “making,” not “creating.” For we make illusion, a dream.

6 – Love

Our loves are tainted. Our loves are not pure in this world. And the reason for this is the ego, which sees ourselves as not needing or wanting others. We try to be independent, but this is not the way of God’s creation, and so we fall on our faces repeatedly. Pain enters, for our will is no longer free. We are not listening to the Holy Spirit, Who chooses the best for us—the will that we would have if we knew what was best for us.

7 – True Want

“Love will enter immediately into any mind that truly wants it, but it must want it truly. This means that it wants it without ambivalence, and this kind of wanting is wholly without the ego’s ‘drive to get.’ (T61)”

We sometimes limit the love that we can receive by specifying that this love must come from a particular source. Such thinking usually signals that one is dealing with a special relationship, not a holy one. But the Course would purify our special relationships, rather than remove them from us by force. All special relationships are meant to become holy eventually.

8- Source of Love

We would do better if we did not specify the desired source of the love that we invite to come to us. Then the real world can deliver our desired love in any number of ways. Love is not always found in a special relationship, even in the beginning. The love of nature, for example, is a great healer in times of stress. The love we desire does not have to be always from another person.

9 – Love Is with Us

When we truly want love in our lives, it is there already. There are no exceptions to this rule, though the ego would often make us think so. God answers our prayer for love by sending into our lives the love that is ours for the asking. We do not have to plead or to struggle. We simply need to ask. And this is truly without the ego’s “drive to get.”

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I do want love. I want love to enter my life immediately and unconditionally. I don’t want my ego to interfere.

May I drop all desires to have something that my ego dictates. May I have, instead, the love that You have promised me.

May the theology that I posted today be acceptable to some, and may others just drop it from their minds. We are not meant to divide ourselves by theology, but we are meant to enjoy a common experience. And You have pointed out that common experience in A Course in Miracles. Thank You. For this common experience is necessary, whereas a common theology is impossible for individuals with such disparate personalities.

Amen.

There Is Nothing Outside You. It Is the Realization that the Kingdom of Heaven Is Restored to You.

1 – Theology

The passages of today are theological construct, but they are quite helpful, I find, to what we are trying to learn in A Course in Miracles. The title of this posting is emphasizing, in the quotation, that projection makes perception. And we are projecting illusion. The world does not exist! Elsewhere in ACIM Jesus says this, and he says that we must ultimately come to understand this. Not all are yet ready, but for those who are, we can recognize many blessings.

In short, this absolves others of responsibility in hurting us. We don’t have to feel hurt in any way, because nothing has really happened outside of illusion. Of course, we can imagine that this does give us (or them) free rein to do just anything. Morals are still important, and Christian ethics are still important. But we have a genuine basis for forgiveness now. We don’t pardon real “sins,” only mistakes made in illusion. And such mistakes are easily correctable.

2 – Nothing Outside of You

“There is nothing outside you. That is what you must ultimately learn, for it is the realization that the Kingdom of Heaven is restored to you. (T-18.VI.1)”

Is the Kingdom of Heaven really restored to us? The answer lies in how we feel, for feelings are of the heart, and, as A Course of Love, says, the heart is the way that we will come to know now. (Ultimately, we combine mind and heart to form “wholeheartedness.”)

3 – Heaven on Earth

Can we experience Heaven on earth? Indeed, I believe that we can. Jesus implies as much in the Gospels, when he is enjoying camaraderie with his disciples. And Edgar Cayce once channeled the Last Supper in such a way as to suggest that Jesus was totally at ease and enjoying his disciples’ company at this final meal.

4 – How So?

What would it take to experience Heaven on earth? Very little change, if we look to peace and joy and harmony—letting conflict, anger, and attack go out the window. All of us have known the flights of joy that the ego has brought to us, but the ego gives only to take back. And we paid for those flights of joy by tears of pain and suffering. There was no high without a low.

5 – Let the Ego Loosen

Things are different when we have let the ego loosen. When we no longer look to things of this world for satisfaction, for, as Jesus suggests, there are no satisfactions in this world. That may seem extreme, but in the context of material satisfactions most of us can see how it is true. We do need certain material goods, and God knows this and will provide, if we do not stand in our way by the world that we make, the poverty that we make by the law of attraction.

6 – Heaven

“Heaven is not a place nor a condition. It is merely an awareness of perfect oneness, and the knowledge that there is nothing else; nothing outside this oneness, and nothing else within. (T-18.VI.1)”

The definition of Heaven in this passage suggests the need for much reflection. We have traditionally thought of Heaven as a place, especially to which we hoped to go after death. But not a place, Jesus tells us. And not a condition. This latter is harder, for we tend to think that if we live harmoniously, we will have the condition of Heaven on earth. But if we are aware of the perfect oneness that we share will all others, indeed, the All which is, we will know Heaven. This Oneness will give us the forgiveness that we all need to extend and that we all need to receive.

7 – A More Tangible Heaven

How might we conceive of Heaven more tangibly? I think that we need to relax “into” Heaven, not become agitated at the slightest provocation, not to invite anger or attack, and not to feel envy, malice, jealousy, and the other negative emotions. How do we do all these “nots”? We don’t focus on the “nots,” but instead look to the positive side of all of this. We cultivate tolerance, patience; we look for reasons to be joyous. And, maybe most of all, we accept the past with all its mistakes. God has forgiven us. Why is it so hard for us to forgive ourselves?

8 – Mind Reached to Itself

“Mind reaches to itself. It is not made up of different parts, which reach each other. It does not go out. Within itself it has no limits, and there is nothing outside it. It encompasses everything. It encompasses you entirely; you within it and it within you. There is nothing else, anywhere or ever. (T-18.VI.8)”

This is the fullest explanation of projection makes perception that we find in ACIM. We are seeing mind in its entirety, and there is nothing outside that. Of course, we do not mean the brain, which is only a tool on earth, a lodging place for the mind. Mind is composed of ideas, and we are an idea (from the Text of ACIM). God is an idea as well, and we are part of Him. There is no other theological concept in ACIM that is so important as this. We must understand this. And then we will walk a peaceful walk home to God.

Affirmation: “The Kingdom of Heaven is restored to me today.”

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I feel that my trying to understand “there is nothing outside you” is finally becoming possible. We live in a hologram; the universe is a hologram. Each part is the whole; the whole is in each part. And that is God, the One, the All. That is You.

Be with me today as I seek to live a harmonious life. May today be the start of a glorious year of harmony. May I reach out to my significant others with peace and comfort. May our days be long and good.

Be with my brothers and sisters. We need each other so very much. May I know better how to interact socially in the coming year. May my interactions with others be satisfactory.

Amen.