Reassurances of God’s Love

There is a reassurance in the Course that saves us from the impasse of failing to forgive others and thus not meriting forgiveness one’s self: “. . .if you choose to see a world without an enemy, in which you are not helpless, the means to see it will be given you.” (T-21.VII.9:4) This new insight requires a reevaluation of all the negativity coming from others. We must instead recognize that our brothers and sisters are really calling for love. Our power (i.e., being “not helpless”) comes in large measure from this realization. Refuse to accept the dagger in the words of others. Know that, unless we help them, it is as though they held the dagger against their very throats. And for us, in initiating attack, Jesus make the analogy that a sword is being held over our own heads. (W-p1.192.9:4)

When we are still mired in attack vs. innocence, not sure of where we stand, we often look ahead to an uncertain future, and try to make plans that we think will protect us from the uncertainties to come. We are trying to avoid confronting the pitfalls of our habitual reactions to the world: attack when we are attacked. Jesus says that not often do we recognize that planning is a defense; we believe, instead, that “sin” causes effects from which we must save ourselves. And this “sin” is often seen as the negative behavior that others take out on us.

The Course has an answer; it teaches us to look to the “now” for release. Miracles work only in the “now.” The Course further teaches us that all such maneuvering is meaningless once we have made a “change of purpose for the good.” (T-26.VIII.7:9) This change can be that we refuse to return attack for attack, and instead see it as the “plaintive cry for help” that it really is. (T-27.VI.6:6) In another passage, the Course calls this almost universal reaction, “distress that rests on error.” (T-30.VI.2:7) If we can just recognize the truth of these words, many an interpersonal problem will evaporate in the light of the real truth.

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We Are a Perfectly Clear Miracle

“All words, at best, are preparatory. The Word is really a thought. No one word is universally meaningful, because a word is a symbol. But thought is not divisible at the level of creation. The original name for ‘thought’ and ‘word’ was the same. The quotation should read, ‘In the beginning was the Thought, and the Thought was with God, and the Thought was God.’

“How beautiful indeed are the thoughts of God, who live in His light. Your worth is beyond perception because it is beyond doubt. Do not perceive yourself in different lights. Know yourself in the One Light, where the miracle which is you is perfectly clear.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-3.VII.16:1-6 and 17:1-4)

We are ideas in the Mind of God, a synonym for “thought.” This is why we project the world that we see; it is all an idea, real only as an idea is real.
We are a miracle in the sight of God. We are one Light with Him, blessed and blessing. Let us become all that we can become in this world, no limits anywhere.

The biblical quotation, here given in revised fashion by Jesus, is instructive. The “Word” and “Thought” are said to be the same. And so the notion that we are ideas in the Mind of God seems sure, on solid ground. This was set forth by the philosopher George Berkeley in his theory, called Idealism. He believed that what we see in the outer world is just a collection of ideas, that it is immaterial. This is trumpeted by A Course in Miracles, in its non-dualistic worldview.

Because we are ideas in the Mind of God, we simply change form in different vibratory frequencies. Energy isn’t ever destroyed; it just changes form. That is why we are assured of immortality in an eternity.

Jesus: “When You Perform a Miracle, I Will Arrange Both Time and Space to Adjust to it”

“The miracle abolishes the need for lower-order concerns. Since it is an illogical, or out-of-pattern, time interval by definition, the ordinary considerations of time and space do not apply. I do not regard time as you do, and your space problems are not mine. When you perform a miracle, I will arrange both time and space to adjust to it.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-3.II.1:1-4)

Here are the ground rules for miracles. If we need more to time to perform one, one that has been prompted by Jesus, he will arrange it. And arrange space as well.
There is no way that we can comprehend what he is telling us. It is something that we will have to experience, this business of miracles. Miracles are expressions of love outside time and space, and he makes sure that we have all the time and space we need to perform them. We aren’t bound in any way.

Surely the miracle does bless both giver and receiver. We are constantly wanting miracles to get us out of the fixes we get ourselves into, but we still don’t often ask for a miracle. Let’s change that.

A close walk with Jesus will create in us a desire to be more miracle-minded. We will indeed be blessed when we ask, each day, to be extended the grace to offer miracles to our brothers and sisters.

And accept miracles for ourselves.

Miracles & the Akashic Record

“The deepest level of the unconscious is shared as an ability. As miracle-mindedness, the content—or the particular miracles which an individual happens to perform—does not matter at all. They will, in fact, be entirely different, since I direct them, because I make a point of avoiding redundancy. Unless a miracle actually heals, it is not a miracle at all. The content of the miracle level is not recorded in the individual’s unconscious because if it were, the miracle would not be automatic or involuntary, which we have said repeatedly that it should be. However, the content is a matter for the record, which is not within the individual himself.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.XI.4:1-6)

The “record” is the long list of happenings that are personal to us, and that are kept in the cosmos. Often this record is called the “akashic records.” This is somewhat separate from our unconscious mind, a thought that we may not have realized.

Here Jesus goes to some pains to impress upon us that he is directing miracles, that he is not repeating the same miracle with different people, and that we ourselves are not supposed to attempt miracles of our own volition.

Miracles are healing, and when they do not happen, something has gone wrong. This in itself is a major insight as well as cause for rejoicing. Miracles ought to happen, Jesus seems to be saying. Can we not just benefit from that assertion?

This somewhat lengthy quotation is not easy to understand, and perhaps we can well see why Helen deleted a good bit of the ideas from the editions that she developed. Here, in the complete version, we see that the unconscious is viewed differently by Jesus from Jung, who thought that his collective unconscious was shared by all minds. Jesus is at first talking to psychologists, Helen and Bill, and so the more academic approach to the unconscious would have made perfect sense to them.

We can focus on the miracle-mindedness that Jesus promulgates. We can rest in the knowledge that if we need a miracle, we need only ask. If we have met the conditions that Jesus places upon us (these differ from individual to individual) then we will find ourselves a recipient of a miracle. Our expectation actually helps along the process.

Let’s watch our mind and heart to allow the cosmos to etch good happenings in our akashic records.

Miraculous Thinking

“It is certainly much more useful for me to remind you that you do not guard your thoughts at all carefully, except for a relatively small part of the day, and somewhat inconsistently even then. You may feel at this point that it would take a miracle to enable you to do this, which is perfectly true. Human beings are not used to miraculous thinking, but they can be trained to think that way.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.X.9:1-3)

If we expect a miracle, we are likely to find ourselves experiencing one. Miracles are our blessings, and it is only the skeptical mind that will make accepting them difficult.

Here we are encouraged to guard our minds, because we often lapse into negative thinking with resultant manifestations that are unfortunate. Probably Jesus was at first speaking to Helen here, since the words seem so personal and have personal knowledge of thought processes. But the words are widely applicable to us, and we would benefit a great deal if we take Jesus’ advice to heart. Lift up our minds to higher thinking, and watch our days go by pleasantly. Perhaps at first the exercise will be inconsistent, but the reward is great.

Watch our thinking. Our mind is precious, and Jesus would have us use it wisely.

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.

Offering Miracles Rightly

“The value of the Atonement does not lie in the manner in which it is expressed. In fact, if it is truly used it will inevitably be expressed in whatever way is most helpful to the receiver, not the giver. This means that a miracle, to attain its full efficacy, must be expressed in a language which the recipient can understand without fear. It does not follow by any means that this is the highest level of communication of which he is capable. But it does mean that it is the highest level of communication of which he is capable now. The whole aim of the miracle is to raise the level of communication, not to impose regression (in the improper sense) upon it.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.VII.10:1-6)

When we engage in expressions of love, miracles, we need to be well aware of what we perceive the understanding level of the recipient really is. It is not enough that we understand what we are trying to do when we express love; it is vitally important that we correctly figure out what the receiver is ready to accept. Then the miracle, prompted by Jesus, can find a true home. Then the miracle truly heals.

We need to be sure that our communication, expression, of love does not contain any elements that might cause the other person to feel fear. Knowing what to say and do then requires guidance, for who among us would know how to couch our words in a wholly benign and loving way? If another feels threatened by what we say, the miracle would be lost. No love would have been felt, no miracle truly received.

Let your expressions assume miracle status by asking for guidance in this matter of giving. Not only do we need to ask if a miracle is appropriate, but we need also to ask what to say or do. So all aspects of our miracle readiness draws on a higher Source.

Jesus: “You Can Do Anything I Ask”

“You can do anything I ask. I have asked you to perform miracles, and have made it very clear that these are natural, corrective, healing, and universal. There is nothing good they cannot do. But they cannot be performed in the spirit of doubt. You have asked yourself why you cannot really incorporate my words. But remember my own question before you ask yours: ‘O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?’” (ACIM, COA ed., T-2.III.3:1-6)

“You can do anything I ask.” What a lovely reminder and supportive comment! We must not doubt when we receive an inkling that an expression of love—a miracle—is called for. Our personally selected expressions may be misguided, for not everybody is ready. But the ones that we intuitively sense—that is something different. Jesus speaks to us through our feelings, as well as our sudden thoughts, and we would do well to listen in faith—not in an attitude of doubt about what we have received.

Miracles for Everyone

“Christ-controlled miracles are selective only in that they are directed toward those who can use them for themselves. Since this makes it inevitable that they will extend them to others, a very strong chain of Atonement is welded.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.49.2:1-2)

When we perform a Christ-controlled miracle, i.e., choose expressions of love directed by Jesus, we gain just as much as the recipient. This is illustrative of what a blessing miracles really are. We find out how to live “in the flow,” going about our day without trying to control everything, and we keep constantly attuned to the Answer. Our joy overflows, for living with a readiness for miracles is truly living a charmed existence.

If we strive to be happy, we will find that keeping an ear attuned to miracles will fulfill that adventure. Living close to Jesus is its own reward. If we think that we have a personal relationship with him, indeed we do. But he loves us more than we love him, for we are not purified as he is. His ability to love is therefore greater. It will not always be this way, but the earth sojourn is not easy, and we have learned things that will not help us as well as learned things that will.

Open ourselves to miracle readiness. Open ourselves to the Holy Spirit (if following A Course in Miracles) or the Christ Self (if following A Course of Love). It matters not that we think, in the beginning, that we are losing control of our lives. We are really growing into them, in the best way possible.

Miracles Save Time

“There is no relation between the time a miracle takes and the time it covers. It substitutes for learning that might have taken thousands of years.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.47.2:5-6)

What a joyous revelation! The miracles that appear in our lives may be saving thousands of years, years often filled with suffering and pain. Jesus doesn’t specify if these miracles affect us or the people that we express love, a miracle, for—but it does seem obvious that the miracle affects everyone involved, giver and receiver. A Course of Love makes clear that giving and receiving are identical in this life. So we can be sure that any miracle happening around us in any way at all does bless us.

Jesus does not take a stand on reincarnation in A Course in Miracles, but the hint is seen here that we might save ourselves many thousands of years of reincarnations if we approach the miracle with the right mindset. Certainly we fall into unknowing in this life, failing to remember the love that may be so evident when we are on the Other Side (Heaven, if we wish to call it that). This forgetfulness can be very damaging to us, but it is necessary for the illusion to work.

We set ourselves very severe challenges in this life, though Jesus does say in the Manual for Teachers that there is no challenge to an advanced teacher of God. The reason for this is that we choose for all humankind, following guidance by turning to the Holy Spirit before we act.

Ask for miracles to surround us today. If we are open to this miracle-minded thinking, we will perhaps save ourselves many years of potential agony.

Miracles & Revelation

“When the Sonship can return to its original form of communication with God by direct revelation, the need for miracles is over. The Holy Spirit mediates higher- to lower-order communication, keeping the direct channel from God to humanity open for revelation. Revelation is not reciprocal. It is always from God to you. This is because God and you are not equal. The miracle, on the other hand, is reciprocal because it always involves equality.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.46.20:3-8)

This quotation gets to some of the keys in the theology of A Course in Miracles. We are given the Holy Spirit as a Gift, because we are, unfortunately, not ready for direct communication from God; our fear is too great. We think that God doesn’t mean us well, because what we have done with our lives is so despicable that He could not forgive our deeds. Actually, we learn in ACIM that God never forgives because He has never accused; He doesn’t blame us for anything, seeing us as innocent children who haven’t known any better. God thus has never, ever, condemned us in any sense at all. We are His prodigal sons and daughters, whom He wants mightily to return to the fold.

When we experience revelation (if we recognize it as revelation), it is intensely personal and cannot actually be explained to another. We know what we have experienced, but nobody else would believe us. Miracles are our expressions of love, though, prompted originally by the love of God, and so there is a reciprocal relationship in these. When we feel led to express love, Jesus will arrange time and space to allow us to do so—but only if that expression of love, that miracle, is something that Jesus recognizes as needed and right. He gives us the cue, and we would do well to remember this. Misplaced miracles miss the mark.

When we are stressed, we need to turn to the Holy Spirit, if direct relationship to God still threatens. Later on, in A Course of Love (many believe a sequel to ACIM), we will see a direct approach to God Himself by inviting the Christ-Self from our depths, where God resides, to lead us.

Miracles are more useful now to us and to others. We would do well to ask internally what miracles are needed each and every day, what there is there for us to do.

Prayer & Miracles

“We said before that prayer is the medium of miracles. The miracle prayer is:

“If you will tell me what to do, I will do it.

“This prayer is the door that leads out of the desert forever.

“This however, is not a complete statement, because it does not include the negative. We have already told you to add the thought ‘and not to do those you would not have me do’ in connection with miracles.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.46.9:1-3 to 10:1-2)

Jesus gives very precise guidance in line with our acceptance of his terms. We both perform miracles that he has authorized, and we refrain from performing miracles to which he has not given the nod. We are held strictly to guidance when it comes to what we do in regard to miracles.

Surely this must be because miracles are of a higher order in reality. If we tried to perform them with our limited knowledge, we would disobey laws of the universe that God keeps under strict control. The law of love is one such law, for if the law of love did not exist, then the whole fabric of existence would fall apart. The universe(s) would self-destruct. So God knew what He was doing when Love was placed front and center.

Miracles as expressions of love are a movement into a deeper reality. They are what Love can wrought when other laws are suspended. So we have to have guidance; we can survive and thrive in no other way.

When we pray, we discover what to do as well as what to deny the doing. We get on God’s beam, and what better place is there for all of us to exist?

A Miracle is Never Lost

“A miracle is never lost. It touches many people you may not even know, and sometimes produces undreamed-of changes in forces of which you are not even aware.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.46.1:1-2)

We are lost in mystery in this world. And this is true for the effects of the expressions of love that we exhibit, our miracles. We don’t know how broad the umbrella of our force actually is. It seems to be very large indeed.

We are seven degrees apart from virtually everyone on earth, this calculated by secular, not spiritual, means. If we know someone, and then that someone knows others, by the extension seven times, we have known all on earth. An amazing thought. It serves our purposes here when we realize how the ripples of influence spread out. Our thoughts, expressed, our expressions of love, mean a great deal. So keep in mind that each of us doe make a difference, and that difference can be for good or ill.

Miracles reach out, and that is what we are really about. Miracles prompted by Jesus, as he explains in A Course in Miracles, for he knows the whole picture. Aren’t we lucky to have someone so in the know guiding us?

More on Miracles

“The miracles you are told not to perform have not lost their value. They are still expressions of your own state of grace. But the action aspect of the miracle should be Christ-controlled, because of His complete awareness of the whole plan.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.45.3:1-3)

When we sense love for another, that awareness of love may lead us to want to express love right away. An expression of love is the definition given to miracles. But we don’t always make the best decisions about performing miracles. We may feel love, but maybe right now is not a propitious time to express that love. So we must ask. Always ask; we will be answered by guidance, often in the form of a deep awareness or an intuition.

This quotation talks about “Christ” control, and by this Jesus may be meaning something more than just himself. He may be meaning the Christ soul that inhabits all of us, deep inside. A Course of Love says more about the inner Christ-Self. It is a manifestation of God Himself/Herself, found within each of us. It becomes our way to know when we have moved beyond the Holy Spirit as intermediary, and we wish to contact God directly.

When we know by guidance, we are tapping into knowledge of the whole plan. And knowing the whole plan is vitally important. It is the way that we stay in harmony with all of God’s creation, this world and worlds beyond. At its simplest, it is cooperation rather than competition, and it assures us that we are on the beam. It never asks us to stand independently, for the desire for psychic autonomy is left over from our ego. Our ego would like us to strive mightily to be independent, but independence is not the way. Interdependence is. We are with others on this plane for a reason; we are meant to join with our brothers and sisters to create a viable world, shorn of misdirected impulses of those who turn from God.

So: Ask what miracles we are to perform. Let love be expressed where it will do the most good, succeed better than at any other time or place. An expression of love is always good, but this may sometimes need to be an internal matter, not moving into the external realm outside one’s mind and heart.

Miracles

“A miracle is a correction factor introduced into false thinking by me. It acts as a catalyst, shaking up erroneous perception and snapping it into place.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.37.1)

Jesus indicates that he is personally involved in the bringing of miracles. And, as we learn elsewhere, miracles are always expressions of love. This means that they are expressions of love that Jesus inspires. We ought to be very humble in the midst of such knowledge.

Our own self-directed “miracles” would likely be misguided, because we cannot see the whole picture. Often we think that we would like to do something nice for someone, and we wonder if this is a legitimate miracle to perform. Just ask in our mind. That is the best way to come to understanding. Wait for the intuitive nod from Jesus himself.

It is a legitimate question as to how one entity can do so much. This is simply an unknown when it comes to Jesus. We need to suspend our judgment and look at the results to the questions we pose to the universe. Once we have been reassured that all is in good order, it would be unwise to continue to doubt. Give Jesus the benefit of the doubt. I for one think he knows what he is talking about.

The perceptions of ourselves and others have been very wrong for eons. Now we have been given a way to be sure that our perceptions are clarified to real truth. Miracles effect this, and so let us ask that miracles be our way.

When we are perturbed, remember what Marianne Williamson said, “I could have had a miracle!”

Atonement and Miracles

“The answer is to never perform a miracle without asking me if you should. This spares you from exhaustion. Just because miracles are expressions of love, it does not follow that they will always be effective. I am the only one who can perform miracles indiscriminately, because I am the Atonement. You have a role in the Atonement, which I will dictate to you.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.35.5:1-5)

For students of A Course in Miracles, the admonition from Jesus to ASK before attempting a miracle is well-known. But how many of us really do stop ourselves as we go about our day, asking if now is the right time to give an expression of love. Many of us don’t think of love at all in our daily grind; we just want to get through the day creditably. Yet expressions of love, as miracles, would mean so much to our brothers and sisters. And to us, for the first person that a miracle affects is the one who is charged with bringing that miracle into the world.

We aren’t to push ourselves to exhaustion, for this is a form of sacrifice, and Jesus has also asked that we not sacrifice ourselves, even to Love. He says that he did not do so, and thus it is correct to know that he would never ask us to do so either. We need Jesus’ guidance about when to act and when to rest. We need to know that we are proceeding under guidance that is just beyond what we normally think about in our daily pathway. The Holy Spirit and, later, the Christ-Self, will provide careful instruction to us.

We are never left in the dark about what to do next; we just need to ask of a Power greater than our little, finite, personal selves.
Jesus, in charge of the Atonement, does let us know what is expected of us by way of support for the Atonement. We are joining together to create a new day, a day of ultimate salvation, a day of Christ-consciousness or Awakening. We are needed. All of us.

Miracles & Revelation

“29. Miracles are a way of earning release from fear.

“Revelation induces a state in which fear has already been abolished. Miracles are thus a means, and revelations are an end. In this sense, they work together. Miracles do not depend on revelation. They induce it. You are quite capable of miracles already, even if you may be still too fearful for revelations. Revelation will occur after you engage at the visionary level in a process of denying fear.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.29.1-2)

When Jesus or the Holy Spirit prompts a miracle, we are expressing love to the person(s) receiving the miracle. This heals us as well as them. And it prepares the way for revelation, which is always from God.

Perhaps at this early place in A Course in Miracles, we are still fearful of God. This is the reason for the Holy Spirit as intermediary; we don’t cringe before Him. His loving Spirit gives us comfort. Eventually, though, we will want to approach God more directly. And this is what the sequel, A Course of Love, does for us. We are said to be in the time of Christ now, the time of Holy Spirit having passed.

There is a period of crossover, for many are just now learning that ACIM exists. And our Guide during its reading is the Holy Spirit, Who has not gone anywhere, but is right here to help us. He will help us to envision a denial of fear. He will pave the way for this more direct approach to God Himself, the Deity. God dwells deeply within all of us, and His way counsels a life of Love.

Miracles and revelations do work together. And we are so blessed in our daily lives that we can and do have both. The trick is to recognize these blessings when they occur.

Atonement

“. . .[I]t is clear that when you can atone by miracles, both giver and receiver are atoning. It is better to atone this way because of the mutual benefits involved. ‘Inasmuch as you do it unto the least of these my brethren’ really ends with ‘you do it unto yourself and me.’ The reason why you come before me is because I do not need miracles for my own Atonement, but I stand at the end in case you fail temporarily.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.24.2.:4-7)

When we accept the request of Jesus to go and let a miracle come through us, we are atoning for self and the other. It does not mean that we have “sinned,” for we know from A Course in Miracles that Jesus believes that our misdeeds and misthoughts are mistakes only, something that will encourage us to remedy the problem, not to be drawn to the same thought, deed, or word time and time again.

We can see that in looking to guidance for what miracles to perform, our guidance is seeing the whole picture—for us and for the one to whom we are sent. The mutual benefit that occurs is substantial. And we don’t make mistakes in this endeavor, if, that is, we depend on our guidance. Jesus is looking deep in our souls to see what miracles he can depend upon us to perform.

Jesus rectifies mistakes that we make that we cannot resolve. This is his promise: “I stand at the end in case you fail temporarily.” With a back-up like that, how can we fail, ultimately? We can’t. We have only to call in reinforcements, in this case, Jesus himself. He offers his help as a free offer. God does the same.

Dear God,

I have not seemed to be sent on a mission today. If I have missed hearing the call, please alert me to listen better. I will promise to go and do anything with You standing behind me, and Jesus at my side—a spirit I can’t see but can feel.

Miracles have come to me today. When I ask for a blessing of guidance, You are quick to see that my Answer from You arrives right on time—that is to say, immediately. I appreciate that You don’t hold my impatience against me. You like speed, too.

Thank You.

Amen.

Prayer and Miracles

“11. Prayer is the medium of miracles. Prayer is the natural communication between the created and the Creator. Through prayer love is received, and through miracles love is expressed.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.11:1-3)

There is a direct parallel between this quotation for today, from A Course in Miracles, and words in A Course of Love, a treatise that many believe is a sequel to ACIM. In the chapter on the “art of thought” in ACOL, we are encouraged to believe that the art of thought is miracle-mindedness, miracle-readiness, miracles themselves, as well miracles that come through prayer.

This is not the usual supplication to God. This prayer is virtually a constant thing in our lives, a habit of thought that encourages expressions of love and thereby creates miracles. In its highest form, prayer is communion with God in which words disappear. Our mind and heart are turned to God, attuned to Him, and we dwell in a new relationship to our deepest being, where God Himself dwells.

Would we not want to express love always? Why do we so often trip ourselves up when we would be about our Father’s business? We love, and then we get angry or upset, and we withdraw love. So our lives become erratic. A constant sense of love received and given is the better way. And it is the way in which miracles come into full force.

Trust today that guidance will tell us what miracles to perform, what expressions of love to make plain to our brothers and sisters. When we pray thus, we are in God’s will in a manner that allows all good things to occur. We are in God’s will with our deepest nature.

Dear God,

I would pray deeply and without words, just a constant sense of being with You, in communion with all that is good. The way to do this is simple, but often overlooked. It is to retain a sense of peace and harmony in the midst of life’s trials, and then the tribulations really do disappear. Jesus has said in ACIM that we don’t have to have tribulations here, unlike how he was quoted in the Bible.

I would also welcome Jesus into my life. His hand enfolds mine, and when that happens, it is easy to be peaceful.

Amen.

Miracles Not Meant to Be Spectacles

“10. The use of miracles as spectacles to induce belief is wrong. They are really used for and by believers. A miracle is misunderstood when it is regarded as a spectacle.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.10:1-3)

Not spectacles. But expressions of love for and by believers. Miracles, by expressing love, do keep us in harmony with God. If we think that we need to perform a miracle to buttress someone’s faith, then we are thinking awry. Our miracles, encouraged by Jesus, are not to undertaken at our own behest. Such personally – selected miracles, we are told, are apt to be misguided. Jesus, being in charge of the Atonement, knows where and when miracles are best chosen. Listen to our guidance, and we won’t go wrong in the matter of miracles.

This new edition of A Course in Miracles makes very clear that miracles are expressions of love. In the beginning, with Helen and Bill, Jesus urged that they ask him for advice. He would send them on errands for a heavenly purpose, but he stressed to “ask first.”

We can easily get in our minds that we know more than we do. We don’t see the whole picture, and partial knowledge can be misleading. So we need to pray fervently if we imagine that we have a special task to do for God. Be sure that the intuition is accurate.

This suggests that Jesus is intimately involved with many lives. We can’t know how or to what extent, but we have been reading that he cares about us as people, individually. Whether we go to him, or he comes to us, his position as our redeemer seems secure in A Course in Miracles.

Dear God,

Guide me to express love where You would have it expressed. Send me on errands that you choose, helping the people whom you choose. If Jesus is involved, help me to listen intently to his advice. As the leader of the Atonement, his opinion matters and matters greatly.

Thank You for divesting me of any ideas that spectacles are needed in miracles.

Amen.

Miracles Point to Beauty, Truth, Wisdom

“In other words, all the truth and all the wisdom that is available but unknown to you, takes you to make it known. And if this is the only way that the beauty, truth, and wisdom of the One Self can be made known, then you are the source and the power of coming to know and making known.

“Apply the art of thought to this idea and you will complete the first transition.” (ACOL, D:Day20.9 – Day20.10)

The art of thought is miracle-readiness, miracle-mindedness, and the miracle itself. When applying miraculous thinking to the idea in this passage, we see that a miracle can lead us to understand the truth of what Jesus has told us—that it takes us to know beauty, truth, wisdom, and it is the “us” who are the One Self. This One Self is another way of referring to God Himself, of Whom we are a part. Of course it takes miraculous thinking to understand this concept! The concept is not hard to understand when we are leaning into God for an understanding. Our inner Christ-Self draws on the larger Self, and then we know whereof Jesus speaks.

Truth, beauty, and wisdom are certainly very lofty concepts. It is akin to the idea that we are to entertain ideas of the good, the holy, and the beautiful. When we merge the human and the divine in the elevated Self of form, we will know what these concepts are all about, for our mind and heart, working in concert with one another, will inform with knowledge. We won’t have to depend on faulty perception any longer; knowledge will be ours, and this is an element of eternity (not time).

We are transitioning into the elevated Self of form. This first transition, coming in Day 20, is halfway through our 40 days and 40 nights on the mountaintop with Jesus, and our brothers and sisters who are making this journey with us. Soon Jesus will begin preparing us for our return. As we know, we have remained in our regular daily lives as we have also made the mountaintop ascent. This dual vision has allowed us to realize that we can occupy more than one place at the same time. We can keep our feet on the ground while our heads are in the clouds. We can follow Jesus’s dictates, even as we live in a workaday world.

Enjoy our time on the mountaintop. Ask for miracles to inform us how to appreciate the beauty, wisdom, truth that surrounds us.

We will not be disappointed, for miracles are our birthright.

Dear God,

I ask for miracles today, a good day filled with bright and happy things. May the choice for miracles inform my decisions as I seek to put together a day that You can approve.

Be with me. I have come to expect Your solace all the day through. And You have not disappointed me.

Thank You.

Amen.

Miracle of Ordinary Life Transformed into Extraordinary Life

“If you can’t remove yourself from life, what choice have you but to join with it? Love it. Love yourself. Love yourself enough to accept yourself. Love will transform normal, ordinary, life into extraordinary life. Loving exactly who you are and where you are in every moment is what will cause the transformation that will end your desire to remove yourself from life. All those frustrations you currently feel have a purpose: To move you through them and beyond them—to acceptance.” (ACOL, D:Day8.2)

What a glorious promise—that ordinary life will be transformed into extraordinary life! Previously Jesus has said that the lives that we ordinary people live will attract others to what we have found, ordinary people living extraordinary lives.

And again Jesus asks us to accept, with our mind and heart, of course. The way I like to say this is to say, “Be willing to have it so.” If we are willing to have it so, we cease fighting with life. We don’t overlook things that we want to change, but we do abide in the present if things remain pretty much the same. We don’t get in a royal funk because life is not handing us the goodies on a silver platter.

We abide where we are, with the full understanding that we currently have. We realize that we have the tools for a better life; we don’t have to keep struggling. The way back to God is easy in the extreme. It is ourselves and our lamented egoic consciousness that has made the easiest thing in the world, the hardest.

Let’s live our extraordinary lives today. This doesn’t mean that we do anything particular that is different, but we do, do “it” with a different attitude. And this attitude is acceptance, being willing to have it so. When we are no longer fighting life, we find that we are handed a new life on a silver platter.

Prayer

Dear God,

Thank You for making clear what You are asking of me. Thank You for giving me the equanimity to live peacefully with what presents itself in front of me. This grace comes easily when I pray. And I do pray now—for Your peace, Your guidance, Your good will toward me. I realize that I don’t have to prepare myself to pray to You, just as I don’t have to prepare to have a holy instant. And all instants have the potential to be holy, when I am in right relationship to You. That right relationship is the grace to accept myself just as I am, just as You accept me.

Thank You for helping me to accept the present just as it is.

Amen.

Miracles = Expressions of Love

“Abundance is the natural state of unity and thus your natural state, just as certainty rather than uncertainty is your natural state, just as joy rather than sorrow is your natural state. What you are being asked to do here, is to open the self of form to the place of unity, thus allowing this divine flow of union into the elevated Self of form.” (ACOL, D:Day3.44)

What this quotation says is the way of the future: We open our bodies, with the elevated Self of form encapsulated, to the union that is union with God. Our mind has been transformed by the heart into a place of holiness, a Christ-conscious transformation that we will recognize when it happens to us. Our incessantly busy thinking will slow down, and our unconscious mind will become more available to us. We will seem to see a different world, a world suffused with love and abiding in an environment that has changed because we have changed. The interior changes first, for the external is a reflection of the inner. We must change on the inside before any of our social action agenda will be permanently changed for the better; to try to change the outer without a corresponding inner change is to invite disaster, not what we want at all.

We will know abundance; we will know certainty. Abundance does include our financial betterment, but what it really denotes is the security that God alone can give. No material gain, however great, will satisfy for long—for it could always be taken from us. Certainty is somewhat similar, in that the only lasting certainty is what we learn from our inner Christ-Self, the Self bonded with God.

What can we do to effect this change? Or is it totally out of our hands? We can do one thing and one thing only: Remove the barriers to the expression of love. Then we have the miracle. The complete and annotated edition of A Course of Love, just published by the Circle of Atonement (Robert Perry, editor), makes clear that miracles are expressions of love. Perhaps we were not certain of this before. But every time we fulfill a miracle that we have been asked to perform (listening to guidance), we chip away at the egoic patterns that have ruined us. We are making progress. But, importantly, we don’t decide which miracles we will perform, because consciously selected miracles can be misguided. Wait to get the nod from guidance. Then express love as fully and completely as we know how.

Dear God,

I would hold no resentments nor grievances, attack nor anger, today. To do so is to choose a pathway other than the one You so graciously point out to me. Show me the way to perform miracles that You choose. Help me to express the highest and best love that I have in me.

Thank You that I feel secure in Your abundance and certain Your love. I will be in a better position to work miracles when I am not insecure. Please make sure that my certainty enlarges to a stance of security in the face of Your great blessings to me.

Be with me today. Keep my attitude high.

Amen.

When We Are Ready to Hear, the Miracle Happens

“What is found outside of the boundary of the personal self in the wider circle of unity is timeless. What comes to you in the form of natural abili¬ties or talents, as ideas, as imagination, as inspiration, instinct, intuition, as vision, or as calling, are ways of knowing that come to you, and through you, outside of the pattern of learning.

“Learning is about the transfer of knowledge that was gained in the time of learning, through the process of learning. Notice the inability of teaching or learning to call forth talents, ideas, imagination, inspiration, instinct, intuition, vision, or calling.” (ACOL, D:10.1 – 10.2)

Many words are given us in this quotation to let us understand that much that we know comes from beyond us. We do have insights that change our lives, and few would argue that we have “learned” that insight. Many might say that we coalesced subconscious thoughts into an insight, and maybe this is true, but perhaps also we get these insights, intuitions, from somewhere beyond us—from the state of unity, where the larger Self resides. This larger Self feeds us information just all the time, but we don’t give credit, usually, to where this information might arise. Now we know. There is a place that our hearts go to understand true reality, and this true reality is funneled to us from the Self who resides outside the body, already accomplished.

This theology of A Course of Love is not difficult, but it may sound strange and unusual when first confronted. We need not be confounded, though, for knowing that there is a place where we can go, mystically, to receive knowledge is a great blessing indeed. Ask our Self anything and everything. The answer will be forthcoming, often immediately. There is no time where this Self resides, and so the imparting of information does not have to wait. Only we have to prepare to hear this information/insight. If we are resistant, the words may come into our mind, but we will not heed. And this is as it should be, because we are then not ready to hear.

But when we are ready to hear, the miracle happens. Write out dilemmas, and date them, date and time. Then revisit the journal, and see when the blessing of insight descended upon us. We will be pleasantly surprised. If we don’t write something down, though, we are likely just to forget that we ever asked for a miracle, asked our Self about anything at all.

So: We know now that there is a Self who we own beyond the body, but we know that this Self feeds insight into the bodily Self, this elevated Self of form. The way that this happens is still obscure, but if we pay attention to our guidance, we will know the truth of this happening.

Prayer

Be with me for a good day today. Thank You that I know to write out my dilemmas. Thank You for the prompt answering of those dilemmas. And thank You for always being nearer to me than my breath. You are living through me, and I would give You a good day today.

Thank You for the many blessings that have graced my life. When I get impatient for a miracle, let me realize that I may have had a miracle that I didn’t recognize, and open my eyes to true vision.

Amen.

Jesus Encourages Miracle-Mindedness

“There are many stories in many cultures that celebrate and bear witness to the happenings that reveal that the laws of spirit and the laws of man coexist. Yes, there are natural laws, but these “natural” laws are not the sets of facts you have defined them to be, but rather a staggering series of rela¬tionships, relationships without end, relationships that exist in harmony and cooperation. This is a harmony and cooperation that might one day extend to the sun and a demonstration that the sun need not rise—or perhaps need not set—and the earth would still be safely spinning in its orbit.” (ACOL, D:6.12)

An astonishing thing for Jesus to say—that a natural law might one day reveal a sun that doesn’t rise or set!

It is hard to know what to make of this assertion, but then Jesus says many things in his channeled writings that are hard for our finite, limited minds to comprehend. Moreover, he says many things in the New Testament that we still don’t comprehend.

I think he wants us to open our eyes a little into the realm of miracles. Or what we would view as miracles. Elsewhere he reminds us that Native People (American Indians) say a prayer that is thankful for a rising sun. They recognize that spiritual law and natural law might not be the same. And Jesus wants us to see value in knowing that there are things in heaven and earth that we don’t dream of. We have kept our eyes too long focused on the ground beneath our feet, when we need to lift our sights higher.

I do not personally know how the earth could safely spin in its orbit without the sun rising and setting. But I am willing to entertain the likelihood that Jesus knows things that are beyond my comprehension, and I listen to him with utmost respect. I also give him plenty of latitude. If we take all that he says in A Course of Love, and keep an open mind, we will know a world that has been closed to us until now. And this closed world is going to open as the new world that our Christ-Self will create, not with planning, not with effort, but with guidance from deep within, guidance that we discover at the point of need.

Above all, don’t get hung up on feeling that one must “believe” or “have faith in” the details of what Jesus says. He astonishes us with his words sometimes. But when we listen with the art of thought, which is miracle-readiness, miracle-mindedness, and simply the miracle itself, we will know more. Our closed minds need to open to possibility, and maybe this astonishing statement from Jesus is meant to encourage an open mind above all else.

Prayer

Thank You for guiding me today. Thank You for opening my mind to possibility. Scientific law is not God’s law, and it behooves me to remember that. Scientific law just may not have gotten big enough to be God’s law. But I do not force myself to take on imponderables by blind faith. I ask to be shown what Jesus has in mind.

Thank You for opening my mind a little further today. With enough love, there is just no telling what natural law can stretch to do.

Amen.

Miracles Are Mystery

“Creation of the new has begun. We are an interactive part of this creative act of a loving Creator. Creation is a dialogue. Creation—which is God and us in unity—will respond to our responses. Will respond to what we envision, imagine and desire. Creation of the new could not begin without you. Your willingness for the new, a willingness that included the leaving behind of the old, a willingness that included the leaving behind of fear and judgment and a separate will, was necessary to begin creation of the new. Your former willingness to accept the old but kept creation’s power harnessed to the old. Does this not make perfect sense when you realize that creation, like God, is not “other than” who you are? How could creation proceed on to the new without you?” (ACOL, T4:12.34)

An important announcement occurs in this ending portion of the Treatises of A Course of Love: that creation of the new has begun. Jesus has been very, very desirous of bringing us to this point. He doesn’t specifically say that our attainment of Christ-consciousness, sustained, is necessary for at least the beginning days of creation of the new. Certainly we have understood much from ACOL, and in particular we have understood that our heart needs to inform our mind, and then the joining (wholeheartedness) will take us forward into the unity that we need as a Self and the unity that we need with God (who is also within all that is living). Jesus emphasizes that creation of the new could not begin without us. We are embarking on a grand adventure, one that requires that we forsake the old ways of separation from God. This separation, even though actually illusory, was very real to us. But no more. We know what we must do. We must open ourselves, without judgment and fear, to the wholeheartedness that will take us home in God. It is this that prepares us for God’s reach to us, His choice to grant Christ-consciousness now rather than later.

Of course, there is mystery surrounding the bestowal of Christ-consciousness, enlightenment, Awakening, transformation. Miracles are mystery, of course, and we are not to choose which miracles we might attempt to foster. We need to let Jesus be our guide, for only he knows the miracle-readiness of our brothers and sisters. And when the miracle-readiness takes over, then the mystery of Christ-consciousness is perhaps more likely to occur.

God is not static, in the teaching of ACOL. Would it make sense that with change such a facet of our experience, God Himself would be static? Traditional Christianity taught that God was the Unmoving, but the tradition also thought that God stood outside of His handiwork, which was the universe and all who dwelt within it. Now we have come to understand, in a mystical sense, that God indwells, and that He lives through us. That He is the All, yet the One Who is one with the All. When we sense, even briefly, that God is within us, living through us, it changes everything. And this is the truth to which A Course of Love is pointing.

Our separate will must be left behind, for only in the harmony of recognizing that God’s Will and ours are identical will we have peace. We create our own reality, but that reality is flawed, and separate, as long as we don’t let the Christ-Self inform our decisions, and the Christ-Self is our little part of God. Yet the Whole is in each part, though we don’t comprehend how this might be possible. Thus we can comprehend God in a mystical sense because He is not an external Force to be reckoned with.

Give up any desire to create a reality apart from Him. More accurately, this would involve “making” a reality apart from Him. And it would be complete illusion, not something any of us want to encourage or envision. Go for the real, the real world, the true reality, and see what a difference what we are creating as reality really makes to our day-to-day life.

Prayer

Be with me today as I seek to walk a pathway back to You. This is my hope, my true dream, my mission in life—to return to You. And then to reach out to others with a Love that is informed by You.

The future ahead looks bright when we realize that You are encouraging right action on our part. We indeed have nothing to fear.

Amen.

Welcome a Miracle Today

“Christ-consciousness will be temporary or sustainable depending on your ability to refrain from judgment. What is flows from Love and knows not judgment. All that you envision, imagine, desire with love must be without judgment or it will be false envisioning, false imagining, false desire. This simply means false, or not consistent with the truth. It does not mean wrong or bad and is itself no cause for judgment. It is simply an alternative that will draw you out of Christ-consciousness and not allow it to be sustainable.” (ACOL, T4:7.1)

When we enter Christ-consciousness, we are fearless. Being fearless is a prerequisite. If this seems impossible, know that miracles are quite possible. Welcome a miracle today. And choose not to focus on the “impossibility” of Christ-consciousness coming swiftly. Many in our world are experiencing this sea change every day.

Once we do reach Christ-consciousness, Jesus says in the quotation for today that we need to avoid judgment, or that Christ-consciousness will not be sustainable. If we live in the present, we are probably less likely to judge, for judging is fast adhering to the past and the future. We are safe in the present; let’s remember that today.

Living in the present is a way to bypass much turmoil, for when we are experiencing something, even something bad, we aren’t tuned in to its “badness” in the present. We are just proceeding forward, one step at a time. It is when we look back or peer into the future that we get into trouble. Know that the God Who protects us now will still be there for us down the road. He never leaves us. He never forsakes us. And when we are surrendering to him anew each day, we know this.

“False” is the adjective for judging. But we don’t really do “bad” things in judging; we are simply struggling, and struggling is not going to get us to the sustenance of Christ-consciousness. Jesus says this in The Way of Mastery, a channeled work from the nineties. We often think that struggling, with its often attendant anxieties, will be the tribute that we pay for making progress. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Progress requires nothing negative from us at all. And progress is what we are about now.

So: Let us release judging now. We know when we are doing it, but we often don’t seem to know how to stop. Let it go. Let go and let God handle the issue. We were told in A Course in Miracles that only the Holy Spirit could rightly judge, for only He knew the past, present, and future—all circumstances—that caused a given thing to happen. Our own judgments are always and only false.

Prayer

May I live in the present today. That is my guidance this morning. Thank You for being here for me. Thank You that I know that You are omnipresent.

May this be a good day. May the circumstances of my life smooth to a walkway that is serene, strewn with fallen autumn leaves to cushion my walk. Thank You.

Amen.

Kept Safe & Secure by Miracles

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

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

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

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

And we thank God that this is so.

Prayer

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

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

Thank You.

Amen.

Find a Path Strewn with Flowers

“While you continue to feel as if you do not understand miracles, you will be reluctant to believe in them or to see yourself as a miracle worker. Your belief in miracles and your belief in atonement or correction are the same thing. While you believe there is anything other than your own thinking that is in need of correction you think falsely. Right-thinking is the realm of miracles.” (ACOL, T2:12.5)

We ourselves must be changed first, before the world can be either meaningfully changed or created anew. This assertion belies the idea of the social gospel, a gospel that has been promulgated in our world, but without lasting effects. When we, still egos, go out into the world, seeking to make it better, we take ourselves with us, and an ego-self can’t but be mistaken in many of its thoughts, words, and deeds. When our thinking has been corrected by relying on the changes wrought by a loving heart, we are going to see our egos wither away. And with this change, a change that is atonement or correction, we will finally be in a position to effect true and meaningful change in our world, a change so profound that we will eventually cease to change what is here, and instead actually create a new world. This last, creating a new world, is what Jesus is about in A Course of Love, preparing our mind and heart to unify, and with this union to see our transformation into Christ-conscious beings.

The quotation for today alludes to the art of thought that was covered so thoroughly in the first Treatise. The art of thought is miracle-mindedness, miracle-readiness, and the miracle itself. It is accessed through a mind that is constantly attuned to prayer, being One with our Maker, the One Who is found residing deep within us, the One of Whom we are a part. When we turn to miracle-minded thinking, we are in prayer without a tedious attempt to move ourselves into prayer moment by moment. We are letting our Christ-Self, the egoless true reality of our being, out to play. And “play” is an operative word here, for our former seriousness is all of the ego. Christ knows not of laborious seriousness. Everything for the Christ-Self is effortless and easy, already accomplished on another plane, and just now being brought to our earth. (This last sentence is an interpretation, not stated in either ACIM or ACOL.)

We do not have to fully comprehend all ramifications of miracles in order to use miracles. But Jesus said in A Course in Miracles that personally-selected miracles are apt to be misguided. So we are to look to him to see what miracles we might be asked to perform. Later on in ACIM, we see that the Holy Spirit is our guidance; and in ACOL, we see that the Christ-Self guides. This is a simple progression, for the Self is whole, encompassing all of us in the embrace, and with holy instants we feel as one with Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and the Christ-Self. We live in the time of Christ now, and so we look to Christ-consciousness as our next step into true reality.

Miracles build on themselves. They will become constant for us as we dwell in a new state of mind and heart, a transformed mind and heart. And eventually, ACOL tells us, even miracles will be unnecessary. We will transcend even this, the holiest of our times now. Let us watch and wonder what other blessings are in store for us as we walk down a pathway strewn with flowers.

Prayer

The way back to You is not laborious and difficult. It is what is meant to happen to me, and You do make all things, all things not of the ego, smooth and easy. Help me to know Your will for me. It is my will as well, but for so long I didn’t realize this, and I felt sometimes like Jonah. Those days are long behind me, and for that I thank You. The way is smooth now, and easy. The path is clearly marked.

May my body, mind, and spirit rest in Your peace. The way to You is found in quiet contemplation, and as I give myself up to this, I sense Your Presence. This warm and good feeling feels miraculous to me. Let me know what miracles you want me to allow, and I will listen. I promise.

Amen.

On Being Answered with a Miracle

“There is not a time-lapse between the recognition of needs and the meeting of needs. It is accepted that giving and receiving occur in unison, thus further collapsing the need for time.” (ACOL, T2:7.20)

Jesus doesn’t seem to like time very much. He has earlier told us that miracles collapse time, and that time is a tool given us in this world to space out our experiences.

We already know, from A Course in Miracles, that the solution is always with the problem. And the problem is a need. So we see the similarity in these two concepts. Our needs are resolved as soon as they are recognized as needs, as soon as the light dawns that there is something that is missing in our experience. Isn’t this the way that a loving Creator would act in our world?

Giving and receiving happen in unison, when we are in right relationship with our brothers and sisters, and our God. This means, exactly, that our needs are met at the point that they appear. No waiting. No imploring. No beseeching. God answers us, giving us what we have perceived as a need.

Do we believe this? If not, we can test it out. Stop right now, and think over our lives. When a problem presents itself, ask for a miracle. We can even give a time frame in which we want an answer. We need, for this exercise to work, to be attuned within. We need to ask for a given need to be resolved. Write down the problem, date it, time and day, and then go about our business in a good frame of mind. God has the problem now. His miracle will resolve it in the right time.

When an answer comes (and it will likely come quickly), see if the answer gives us what we want. It is important to note that the answer may NOT be what you want, yet we recognize a divinity within the answer. If the answer seems very awry, see if we have penned a desire rather than a need. Desires are not always in our best interests. We want many things that years later, we recognize would have been wrong for us. But real need—yes, that is the crucial point to be made here. Miracles resolve real need, and sooner rather than later.

This little exercise is borne of personal experience. When I am attuned to my inner Self, the answer to my needs, and sometimes my wants, comes quickly, on the heels of a prayer. Almost before the words are thought sometimes does the answer come. And if time is needed for an answer, I can sense that as well. Then there is a final important part: Don’t forget to say “thank you” to the universe, which answered with a miracle.

Prayer

I would ask for miracles often, for they are a way that You communicate with me, and our communication is very dear to me. I know that you “speak” in silence, but my guidance is clear, and I am wise to follow it faithfully. Thank You for leaning me the expert knowledge that You have. Thank You for being You, my Creator and my Friend.

I would ask that this day go well, that miracles pave my way. I know that miracles paved my way yesterday, and I know that Your Will for me is always good and consistently kind. Our relationship is a cherished one, and I am entirely in Your debt for giving me a smooth walkway.

Amen.

Live in Joyous Quiet & Calm

“This is why you do not have to “wait” to hear your calling even though some of you may feel as if you are in a time of waiting for you hear no such call. The call is to be who you are and this is happening at lightning speed, a speed that cannot be measured because of its simultaneous nature. As was said within A Course of Love, time is but a measurement of the “time” it takes for learning to occur. As this notion of time dissolves, the state of miracle-readiness becomes your natural state.” (ACOL, T2:4.18)

This passage makes clear that the primary calling is always and alone to be ourselves. To “be who you are,” which is to be ourselves. Later on Jesus does detail several specific types of callings which may come to us along the way, while we are perfecting just being who we are. But he puts our minds to rest (as he often does) here by letting us know what is most important: just to be who we are. This does take some learning, because we have been living a persona of egoic origins for eons, and we are unused to just accepting the Self. We may not, even yet, now what this Self really is, though it is just the union of mind and heart to form wholeheartedness—a frequent request made in A Course of Love.

We aren’t comfortable with a Self who is Christ, who is a part of God, for we have run from God for a long time. Even at our best, we had previously believed the ego and fallen in line with those things that gave us pride. We patted ourselves on the back when we accomplished some new goal, thinking that our striving (actually a struggle) had been all to the good. But now we are learning that the best things in life are easy, that they are adopted unto ourselves by the simplest of learning activities. We can truly relax in this new world we will be creating. We can truly be who we are without thinking that there is always and only something more we must do to be justified.

We may recall that miracle-readiness was another term for the art of thought, a new way of thinking without struggle because it is miracle-based, and is itself a miracle. This miracle-readiness comes about through a way of life that is a prayer, a prayerful attitude that inculcates all that we are and all that we are about. Jesus is very keen to want us to adopt this new state of being, and perhaps this is because the new state of being is who we really are. We can be who we are when we have allowed miracles to embrace us throughout the day. We can be who we are when we are in the receptive state of prayerful reflection. When we are Zen-like, living in a joyous quiet and calm. Being who we are is not hard; it is the persona that has asked impossible things of us, an egoic persona that asks us to struggle to effect change in our world. When we leave the ego behind, we are not faced with impossible learning tasks, impossibility being a depressing state of mind, the most depressing in the world (according to A Course in Miracles).

Let us allow naturalness to enfold us. Relax in the arms of God, and His emissary on earth, the Christ-Self. We can and do have much to effect in creating a new world, but these lessons will be joyous, and the work will be what comes naturally to us. We have always been trying to be something that we are not, and therein has lain the strain. Naturalness has no strain.

Prayer

I want to live the natural way, the way that my soul is designed to live. And this is to welcome miracles from You, miracles that will allow me to live naturally, as who I really am, just being myself. I want to live in this world in an accepting way, given up any tendency to complain against fate. Fate does not determine my future; my alignment with the Christ-Self does.

Be with me today as I seek to walk in Your pathway. Living naturally takes no effort, and it is this I would remember today.

Amen.

Miracle-Mindedness Thinks without Form

“Thinking without form is a harbinger of unity. Form is a product of the separation. Thought “forms” are the product of the separation. Unity is not a place or a thing but the realm of the one heart and one mind; the realm of the formless and timeless. But also the realm of connectedness, of what binds all that lives in creation with the Creator.” (ACOL, T2:1.10)

We have moved into the second Treatise now, the Treatise on Unity. We will learn later on that form is not regretted in A Course of Love; indeed, the elevated Self of form is what will move us every forward in the time of Christ. But we need to learn how to think without thoughts of form—think of the talent of a pianist but not of the instrument, the piano. This is what imagination will do for us. This is what love will do for us.

We have heretofore not utilized the art of thought to any great degree. But here Jesus is putting this new art of thought into action. It is miracle-mindedness that presses a pianist to learn with joy the pleasures of piano-playing. It is love in action. It seems like a miracle, when we think of it, for fingers move rapidly and without much conscious direction. Indeed, when a pianist stops to think of what he/she needs to play, she falters. The same with an athlete trying to aim a basketball at a net. The conscious mind thinks “form,” and then we are lost.

When we use the miracle-minded thinking to which we will soon become accustomed, we are in wholeheartedness, the unity of mind and heart. We have accessed the Self, for we are in union with It, and therefore in union with God, Who dwells within. Our very souls are accessed in this way, though the soul is not limited to the earthly realm. (That is why Jesus rarely uses the word “soul” in either A Course in Miracles or A Course of Love.)

Connectedness will soothe us as nothing else can, for we will soon realize that we are safe in the arms of the Great Creator. When our connection to God is made solid, all else falls into place. Our fear drops away, first. Then, when we cease to try to make decisions for other people, our judgments of them drop away. And then we are getting close to our Source and our goal of Awakening. We need the safety of God’s Arms to make progress in this world. Without Him, we would be too fearful to reach out to a new and better day. And without Him, we would be too judgmental to be at peace.

The way is now plain. Connect to God, let His mercies surround us and dwell in our hearts, and all will be well.

Prayer

My imagination needs to take over now. It is the imagination that thinks without form. Miracle-minded imagination heals. And I would ask for healing today.

Be with me as I seek to walk quietly and peacefully through my day. I would walk gently, in serenity. Help me to have forbearance if others don’t choose today to walk as I have.

Amen.

A New Era Dawns

“Yes, I have said that contrast is a favored teaching device of the Holy Spirit. But I have not yet said that the time of the Holy Spirit is ending even though I have stated that the time of the second coming of Christ is here. I have said that the time of parables has ended and asked you not to look to those historical figures that taught in such a way as your examples any longer. I have said a new way of learning is needed and is here. To continue to rely on the ways of old, no matter how effective they were and no matter how much they spoke the truth will be to not learn the new.” (ACOL, T1:7.4)

The new way of learning is the art of thought, which is another name for miracle-mindedness, for prayer, and for miracles themselves. Jesus even seems to be discounting his own work in the New Testament, saying that we are not to look for historical figures who taught in parables. If this is true, and it seems to be from this passage, we are to see Jesus in a new way now. His time has finally come, the time of Christ. And we are all sharing it with him. Christ is not a concept that is limited to Jesus, though he was the first. He shares with all of us, for we all have a Self Who is part of God, a Christ Self deep within. And we are finally letting this Christ Self out to play, for Jesus does not preach a laborious and overly serious way of life. In fact, at one point in A Course of Love, he tells us that the seriousness with which we have approached life has been of the ego. True life, lived in concert with the Christ Self, is lighthearted and joyous, a true change of direction from what we have known for eons.

The new way is to be learned through observation of the world around us, not learned wisdom. And, then, even this is replaced with an “in-forming” from that world of all that we need to know. These ideas, from the third book, the Dialogues, are only hinted at in this first Treatise, but the groundwork is being laid. We are going to be asked to create the new, to create a new world, and it will be said that nothing is more important.

Here, now, we are not learning through contrast any longer. We are learning through the miracle readiness in which we are suspended. We are learning from miracles that fall across our path. And these surprises, which cannot be anticipated, are joyous in the extreme. We are finally learning without any pain or struggle. We are striving for new concepts, opening our minds and hearts to the Jesus of today who channeled A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love.

If this is the time of Christ, does this mean an actual physical embodiment for Jesus? Jesus does not ever address this question in A Course in Miracles or A Course of Love. He does indicate in ACOL that we will embody elevated Selves of form, and these Selves will be the one Self Whom we all share, the Christ Who is universal. The question is tantalizing, of course: Will Jesus himself return to earth? But he doesn’t tell us in either ACIM or ACOL. He stresses that we are all part of the one Christ Self, and he now does say that our time has come with the second coming of Christ.

Prayer

May I reach a new understanding of how to live well today, in this time of Christ that is dawning. It is tantalizing to wonder about all that I don’t know, but in the final analysis there is very little that is needed to live well. If I reach out with love, and I avoid fearful thoughts and actions, and avoid judging thoughts and actions, then A Course of Love would say that I am on the right track. If I rest easy, in inner calm and quiet, I will be emptied of all that fear possessed previously. And if I make no decisions for other people, I will have no reason to judge their reactions and their decisions. This sounds so easy to me. Can it really be hard when You are there with 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.

Miracles = Prayer = New Art of Thought

“A Course of Love began with an injunction to pray. A Course in Miracles began with a definition of miracles. Both are the same. Prayer and the art of thought are the same. This should serve to make it clear that the request I have made of you is once again far more broad and generalizable than your old habit of thought has led you to see.” (ACOL, T1:4.3)

Here we see that prayer = miracles =art of thought, and we see that Jesus’s request to us to choose a miracle is a broad-based request that has applicability in every facet of our lives. We had thought, and he let us think for a while, that his injunction to choose a miracle was for something specific. He then led us through a labyrinth of the reasons that we were not acting on his request (for he knew that we would not act, being too fearful of his request). He wants us to drop those fears, fears that have their roots in the specific nature of our egoic thinking, the only thinking that we have known. Now he has finally, after several pages, explained to us, in this passage, that what he is wanting from us is an entirely new way of life, a life that is miracle-based, prayer-based, and based in a new way of thought.

We can pray without ceasing, though if we have never tried, we will naturally doubt that we would ever succeed. As Jesus said in A Course in Miracles, we are much too tolerant of mind wandering. And wander our ego-mind will do; it is only when the ego has been abandoned that we begin thinking in a new way, the prayerful way that invites miracles moment by moment through the new way of thought that we are using.

It is not easy to understand, even now, what Jesus means by the art of thought. This is because we can’t really practice it until we practice wholeheartedly, with mind and heart united as one—and our Self guiding us along the way. We need to let our Self, united with God, come out to play. We have not known about this Self for eons, caught as we have been in a false viewing of thinking through a false self trapped by ego. But all of this is changing for us now, and we are already the better for it. We will soon know a joy that has been eluding us for as long as the ego has reigned, and this goes backward in time to a point that we can only dimly imagine.

Reach for the joy of miracles, the joy that is found in a prayerful and reverent attitude toward life and our living a life. When we glimpse, ever so slightly what this change will bring about in us, we will be impatient to walk the whole pathway toward Christ-consciousness. Indeed, wholeheartedness demands this of us. And God makes the decision, but our fervent desire to live differently is fully in accord with divine will, and so when we pray for Christ-consciousness sooner rather than later, we are in league with God Himself.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would enjoy this day, a day that can be filled with miracles. I spent time in journaling this morning that gave me a new lease on life. And this was prayer, written out in my own handwriting. This is the way that You would have us live, and I now know first hand what a difference it has made in this one day. Thank You.

Be with my brothers and sisters as they seek to understand the art of thought, a difficult concept. Be with me as I seek to expand my own knowledge of what is meant. Help me to avoid a wandering mind, but keep me on task.

Thank You.

Amen.

See Miracles in Everything

“By asking you to request a miracle, I am honoring who you are and inviting you into the state of mind that is miracle-readiness. The art of thought is the expression of that state. The art of thought is the miracle.

“Thus we must dispel, along with the illusion of fear, the illusion of spec¬ificity. You have not been asked to request a specific miracle. Although your thoughts have naturally gone to consideration of the specific, this is but an indication that you are still in the habit of thinking you learned under the instruction of the ego-mind. This Treatise must change that habit in order for all your thoughts to become the miracles that express the truth of who you are. This Treatise will put your instruction fully under my guidance and allow you to disregard the instruction of the ego-mind.” (ACOL, T1:4.1 – 4.2)

Here, once again, Jesus is speaking of himself, saying that this first Treatise on the art of thought will put our instruction fully under his guidance and allow us to disregard the instruction of the ego-mind. His guidance will move us to miracle-readiness as well as miracles themselves through the continual use of the art of thought. Thus we can see that he was not trying to mislead us when he said, a few sections back, that he wanted us to choose a miracle. He didn’t mean something specific, but something all-embracing—miracle readiness in all of our thoughts, all thoughts being the art of thought that welcomes miracles as a fact of life.

We can get used to miracle-minded thinking. We can know that all of our needs are being met continually. We don’t have to look to specific miracles, but to the abstract notion of miracles and our own miracle-readiness that welcomes that abstraction. The real mind is an abstract mind, something that is made clear in the earlier A Course in Miracles. Our thoughts were encouraged there to partake of the abstract rather than the specific, because specificity is of the ego. Complete abstraction is the natural state of the freed mind. And in this movement, we see how A Course of Love develops further the thoughts begun to be imparted in A Course in Miracles.

How do we develop an abstract mind that sees miracles in everything? This is not as strange as it may sound. We can easily see that everything is a miracle, or that nothing is; this is a well-recognized tenet of traditional religion. And in ACOL, we are encouraged to see that everything is a miracle.

This concept will develop flow in us. As we follow guidance throughout our day, we will develop flow. And in so doing, we will make miracles a staple of our living here on earth. We will be miracle-ready, and in gratitude we will realize that for this change, we gave up nothing. We just moved, quietly and peacefully, into miracle-minded living. And nothing will ever be the same again. We will move into a heaven on earth, suffering gone and bright skies above us. We will be home at last.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would follow the guidance that will give me flow, and in that flow I will exude miracle-readiness. This miracle-readiness will allow me to have a mind that sees miracles in everything. The whole world will take on a magical aspect, but a magic that is good, used in a different way from the old magical thinking that was irrational.

This is the most supreme good sense. Thank You for Jesus’s seductive way of speaking, a way that draws us in and reconditions our minds by leading us to our hearts. I would be grateful today for all that You have led me through in this lifetime, even the painful parts. I know that suffering can be behind me now as I reach toward the union of mind and heart, and the union with my Self, found deep within my core, where You are.

Help me to be grateful in a way that I have not been previously. Gratitude unlocks so many doors, and I would unlock the center of my Self, my heart, as I reach inward to You today.

Amen.

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.

Let Miracles Be a Way of Life

“Although many more fears might prevail upon you, we will consider only one further fear, the fear of making the wrong choice in your choice of miracles. This is the same as a fear of scarcity. For surely the working of one miracle would be a fluke anyway. Proof of nothing and easily discounted and explained away. Surely to believe that where one miracle worked another might be possible would be to have ideas of grandeur not meant for you. Here your thoughts might stray to the performing of many miracles. What a media circus that would be. You would be in demand to end so much suffering in so many places. Surely you wouldn’t want that even if it could come to be. Indeed this would require the auspices of a saintly soul and not one such as you.” (ACOL, T1:3.23)

Jesus is speaking paradoxically here, saying what we are thinking, but he, of course, doesn’t mean that he is agreeing with us. We need have no fear of scarcity and thus no need of fearing that we would make a wrong choice of miracles. Keep in mind, though, that Jesus is leading us on an exploration of our attitude toward miracles; this is the whole purpose of the discussion. And later on he says, definitively, that he has not asked for a specific miracle to be requested. Our minds have gone to specificity because that is the way that the ego-mind thinks, and we are used to its dynamic. The question is left open whether or not Jesus actually wants us to follow through and choose a miracle that we would like to see answered. He indicates that the urgency is great that we change our minds, that we combine mind and heart in wholeheartedness, that we unite with our real Self. And he is using the example of a miracle to move us closer to those blessings.

When we recognize that miracle-readiness is a way of life, our confusion will end about what Jesus actually means. He says that the miracle and prayer are the same, and we are more accustomed to prayer than we are to believing that miracles are our due. We are here learning the art of thought, which is also described as being the miracle, and also being prayer. Jesus’s reasoning is keen in this Treatise, but he is not easy to follow. It is quite possible that only a wholehearted way of viewing his words will ever work. And that is the miracle to end all miracles, his gift to us.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would eliminate the specific as I think of a miracle, but I would move into realizing that miracle-minded thinking needs to become my way of life. Thank You for the many hints that Jesus gives in his discussion of the art of thought. He would have us to commune with our Self, Who is a part of You, and in this communion finally come to understand what prayer is all about. You are within, and that is where I can find You. I don’t pray to a god outside of myself anymore. And I don’t pray out of fear, which will not work. Prayer that works is gentle and quiet, and filled with the miracle of full surrender to You.

Be with me today as I seek to follow guidance without stubbornness to go my own way.

Amen.

Choose a Miracle Today–and Be Reassured

“But again I tell you this is no idle request. Whatever is necessary to convince you now is what I will provide. Such is the urgency of the time, the urgency for the return to unity, the urgency of the need to leave fear behind. Can you not, from this one example of your fear of miracles, see the glaring reality of all you still would fear?” (ACOL, T1:3.12)

The fact that Jesus urges our return to unity—the wholeheartedness that is joining with the inner Self—suggests that we have something to do that will effect this return more quickly. I hope that this is so. When we believed, as A Course in Miracles seemed to say, that we were totally dependent on God’s making the decision, we might have felt impotent to do anything concrete that would make a difference. Things are different now, explained differently in A Course of Love. Jesus is unmasking our fears about miracles, letting us know that we are afraid to request a miracle, and in this fear is our whole problem encapsulated.

If we ask for miracles, and open ourselves to them, we will move ever closer to love and away from fear. And this closeness to love is what make the union of mind and heart so real to us, the wholeheartedness and the union with the Self. We cannot effect any change out of fear, for fear is a product of the ego-mind, which, despite its bombastic nature, is actually pretty weak and unable to effect any real change for the ego-mind lives in illusion.

We must ask to be cleared of our fears, of the conditions that have brought the fears about. Jesus in ACIM has said that we cannot ask him to heal us of fear, for to do so would step in the way of cause and effect, a most fundamental law of our minds. But we can ask for help in easing the conditions that have brought the fear about. This he can do. And will do.

Jesus’s urging that we choose a miracle is no idle request. He wants us to be believers in the fullest sense of the term. And when we let him influence our minds and hearts, we are getting ever closer to enlightenment, to Christ-consciousness. This is another way of describing the union with the inner Christ Self. And the union of mind and heart to form wholeheartedness.

Let’s ask for help in the conditions that have brought our fears about, and let us ask today. Then move on to ask for a miracle, in whatever way this is meaningful to us.

We will not be sorry to spend our time in this way. We will find our way home, and this miracle business is the surest and shortest route.

Dear Father/Mother,

I ask for Your help today in choosing a miracle that would ease my fears. I would move toward love in every respect. When I fall from this high point, lift me up. Help me to incorporate love in every part of my life.

Be with all of us today. The miracle will answer many problems. It is the best thing that we have going for us.

Amen.

Miracle-Minded Thinking Is the New Way

“I ask you now to request a miracle.

“What kind of a miracle should you ask for? How big of a miracle should you request? How big is your faith? How much proof does it require? I speak not in jest but ask you to seriously consider just what kind of miracle is needed to get you to change your mind about who you are and thus about the nature of your thoughts.” (ACOL, T1:3.7 – 3.8)

In asking us to request a miracle, Jesus is making a point that we have many fears surrounding miracles. Then in the next few sections, he outlines just what those fears really are. Eventually he tells us that he was not asking for a specific miracle, although as individuals for whom the specificity of the ego has been rampant, our thinking has naturally gone to the specific. His main point in talking about our request for a miracle is to point out what is holding us back from miracle-minded thought, the type of thought that he means by the “art of thought,” the theme of this book in the Treatises.

He says also that asking us to request a miracle would seem to go against what he taught in A Course in Miracles. He said there that consciously selected miracles are apt to be misguided—that we should wander into the territory of consciously selected miracles. But he says now, in A Course of Love, that the extreme urgency of this time, and to our return to wholeheartedness, demands extreme measures, and asking for a miracle is part of fulfilling our needs now, our needs to get over our fears of miracles.

Most of us will not actually choose a miracle when asked to do so. We will eagerly keep reading, and then we will find ourselves nodding our heads at his evaluation of our fears of miracles, and the reasons that Jesus gives for our reluctance to name a miracle for which we want an answer. Nevertheless, when a few paragraphs over, we find Jesus saying that he does not mean a “specific” miracle, we are likely to feel duped, even though we haven’t followed through because of some of the fears that he names.

Jesus is using a stylistic device to engage our best thinking, the thoughts of the art of thought. He does not mean to dupe us. He means to open our eyes to our own faulty reasoning and our own fear. The art of thought, which he is teaching us in this Treatise, means miracle-readiness and miracle-minded, the fulfillment of a new way of life. The art of thought will free us to perform miracles repeatedly and as a matter of course. If Jesus can get us to see that our fears are holding us back from just this laudable purpose, he will have fulfilled part of his purpose in this first Treatise.

If we get over our fears, we can enter into a new way of thought, the art of thought, that will broaden our perspective on what life and living are all about. We will be supporting the union of mind and heart into wholeheartedness, and the union that we need to have with our deepest Self, the inner Christ spirit. Extreme measures are needed to jolt us out of the ego-mind. And Jesus provides what is needed.

Dear Father/Mother,

I would feel energetic today to do Your bidding in a miracle-minded way. I would cast aside my fears about doing miracles by listening to Jesus and following in his way. I want to turn aside from the ego-mind with a final decision to perform whatever miracles are asked, miracles that become a way of life. Help me to do this.

Be with me today as I seek to keep a clear-eyed view of this world. I would follow Jesus’s reasoning about my fears of miracles, and I would turn aside from fears of this type. May I find a new way of living by turning to the miraculous in everyday life.

Amen.

Joy that Knows No Bounds

“The joy that will come to you from the thoughts of a mind joined in union will be unparalleled in your experience here. “Ah,” you will say with a relief and joy that knows no bounds, “this is what it is to experience and know the truth. This is what it is to create, for this is what it is like to think as God thinks.” Where once you recognized only illusion and called it reality, the mind joined in union will now, more and more, recognize only truth and experience only the truly real.” (ACOL, T1:1.10)

Union in A Course of Love means two things, related but not identical. First, union means the joining of heart and mind to form wholeheartedness. This change will transform us. It will make the second thing possible: the emergence of the Self from within, and in this emergence will come union with this Self and union with God.

Of course, all of this change will mean that enlightenment, or Christ-consciousness, is now possible for us, at first to be seen in glimpses, then in lengthening glimpses, and finally to be maintained and then sustained. It is possible for there to be a sudden change that is disorienting, but this form of change occurs less often than the gradual, quiet Awakening.

And we will know joy in union with God and in union with our Self, the part of God Who dwells within each of us. This promise is an enlargement from the dictates in A Course in Miracles, when happiness is seen to be our function (along with salvation and forgiveness). I don’t think that we need to quibble over the difference between the joy that Jesus describes in ACOL, and the happiness that he encourages in ACIM. The point is that our future is much brighter than what we have been living through, suffering because we failed to recognize and to live miracle-readiness.

The art of thought, discussed so obliquely in this first book of the Treatises, is variously described as creating like unto our Creator (God), or miracle-readiness, or prayer, or the miracle itself. The art of thought is also seen a diametrically opposite the thinking of the ego-mind, and so it is imperative that we be certain that we are no longer motivated by egoic ideals.

Let’s welcome this joy today, knowing that union is finally being reached. We live wholeheartedly, and in this new way of handling our world, we merge with the Self, the part of us Who is God Himself.

With such a change, could anything be less than ideal? Aren’t we truly and completely on our way now to a glorious new day, creating the new world that Jesus so longs to see us do?

Dear Father/Mother,

I would be grateful today for the many blessings poured out upon me previously, and the promise of ever greater blessings now and in the future. I would wait patiently for Your action in my life, for the glimpses of Awakening to lengthen, for the Awakening that You want for me to come about. When I am at peace in this world, the future seems bright indeed. And all of us can welcome a little more peace.

Be with my brothers and sisters. May I reach out when I can, and may I draw inward for sustenance when this retreat is necessary. Help me always to be open to guidance, always to cease second guessing the nudges that come to me.

Thank You for another promising day in Your Presence.

Amen.

Miracles Embrace the World

“I repeat: Belief of another kind can foster the creation of form of another kind. A wholehearted belief in the truth about your Self is what is required to cause this to be so. It is what is necessary now. It will change the world.

“Belief of another kind is what miracles are all about. It is what you are all about as a miracle worker. For you to change your beliefs is the miracle that we are after, the result we seek from this Course.” (ACOL, C:23.13 – 23.14)

Jesus is here introducing the concept that will be a major feature of the final book in A Course of Love, the Dialogues. He is mentioning here, without using the words, the elevated Self of form. This is the body that we occupy that is informed by the Self, our inner essence, the part of us that joins with God so that we finally know who we are.

Quite a controversy has arisen about whether or not A Course of Love is a dualistic thought system, whether God seems separate and apart from His world, whether mind and body are different, whether unity and relationship as described in A Course of Love mean that all is not One. This is an unnecessary debate, for if one looks to the heart, these questions just fall away. Is A Course of Love, and the elevated Self of form, a helpful concept as we find our way toward Christ-consciousness? As we transform the world over the next millennia?

If we look for controversy, always and forever we will find it. There is always the means to take theological concepts and consider them exclusively to the detriment of the heart’s knowledge. But is theology necessary for inclusion as we consider the heart’s knowledge? As we consider the elevated Self of form, a new creation in a new world that we are co-creating with God?

The way to surety is to turn within. There we find God waiting for us. He lives our lives with us, for we are in no way separate. That is the monism on which A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love dwell. A universal theology is impossible, but a universal experience is not only possible, but necessary. These words from A Course in Miracles will put our minds and hearts at rest.

Prayer

Dear Father/Mother,

Grant us the magnanimity to embrace the whole world, those who agree with us on various matters as well as those who don’t. The world will be a better place when we hold hands. And I ask for this hand-holding today and every day.

Be with us as we seek to know Your truth, as we turn within to the truths that speak to our heart.

Thank You for always being right here with us, experiencing our joy as the reality that it truly is.

Amen.

Miracles Speed Up Time

“Perception of levels is a function of time, and thus it seems that great amounts of time are needed before change of a lasting nature can occur. This is why miracles save time, for they integrate all levels, temporarily collapsing time. Time is actually a measurement of learning, or the “time” it takes for learning to pass from one level to another through experience, for here learning is experienced in time.” (ACOL, C:18.12)

We first learned in A Course in Miracles that miracles themselves collapse time, moving us ahead by leaps and bounds to a new day. Now we are learning, and learning is experienced on this earth, measured by time. Thus time has a specific purpose that we need to learn, and learn well. We will learn that when we invite miracles, our way is sped exponentially.

We need to invite miracles, most especially the miracle of enlightenment. We can and do catch glimpses of enlightenment when we are mellow, for the usual drama is diminished, and our minds (and hearts) are calm. The best way, in fact, to invite a glimpse of enlightenment, to my mind, is to slow down and invite mellowness in our demeanor. This mellowness means that we are not judging anybody nor anything, and we are not feeling fearful. Judgment and fear are the two aspects of our experience that will keep Awakening far from us. And when we are mellow, we have eliminated these bad experiences.

Be mellow today. Invite the miracle. Christ-consciousness is usually seen first in snatches of time, snatches that lengthen over time. And it is completely within God’s Will that we ask for, and we receive, enlightenment. Enlightenment, Awakening, Christ-consciousness—all mean the same. And we will know the value of this new state of being when we slow down long enough to invite the conditions needed.

Invite Christ-consciousness now. Just bow our heads, and slow down, and be mellow. The new reality will come, in its own time and in its own place.

Prayer

Dear Father/Mother,

I invite miracles today, miracles that will speed all of us on our way to You. This is an especially potent prayer, I know, and I do mean this prayer. May my days grow into ever-increasingly close walks with You.

But help me to be patient. The day will not proceed well if I am not patient. Your way is best; of course I know that. And I will give up planning in my own way today. I will invite guidance. Thank You for being here for me in this guidance.

Amen.

THE AGE OF MIRACLES BEGINS

Published by Celia Hales in Awareness magazine, current issue.

Channeled Writing Announces the Time of Christ

Many of you are familiar with A Course in Miracles, the channeled writing from Helen Schucman and Bill Thetford that purported to be from Jesus. Now there is a continuation, channeled by Mari Perron and entitled A Course of Love. The most exciting announcement of this new work is the fact that we are said to be living in the time of Christ, a new age of miracles.

What is a miracle? Surprisingly, it is not an out-of-time and out-of-space one-time-only insertion into our everyday life. It is a way of living, a new way of thought that takes for granted the primacy of miracles. We are led to understand that miracles are our inheritance, our right in this world—even this conflicted and war-torn world.

We are encouraged to believe that angels are all about us, there to smooth our way, give us a better life. We are encouraged to choose a miracle, but not a specific miracle—instead to choose a new way of life and a new way of thought. It is a way of living that looks to our heart as the guiding force for our being. The benefits are many, and they surround the concept of elevating ourselves to a new height, a non-egoic Christ-consciousness that will allow us to live in peace and harmony.

Like A Course in Miracles before it, A Course of Love encourages us to turn aside from the ego, but not by resisting it, for the ego is made strong when we resist. We just gently make a new decision, a decision to live with acceptance of what life brings. This does not mean that we countenance the violence that is all around us. But we must first change ourselves if we are to have a meaningful impact on our world. And, of course, we want above all to live harmonious lives that will make a difference in the larger world.

To have a chance at Christ-consciousness, we must drop fear and judgment from our repertoire of emotions. Fear is unnatural; likewise, judgment. God’s world requires that we fall in line with what is natural, what has been intended for our living all along. We just got sidetracked into a separation from God that jumbled up our lives.

Now we are bidden to come home. And the return home will be a miracle to end all miracles. A glorious homecoming awaits us all. We will live in this physical world with a Self (capital “S”) that is shared with all, a Self that has been elevated to experience the very best that life has to offer. We do not have to wait for the afterlife to experience this blessing; indeed, we are encouraged not to wait any longer at all, but to welcome the miracle that will set our place in this world as people who know the truth. Our miracle-readiness will do this for us. And then we will go out and perform miracles, as guided to do, by the inner Self.

Miracles are our birthright. We need to stop our struggle, stop our ceaseless seeking, and come home to God through relaxing into His good care.

Miracles vs. Magic

“Let us talk a moment here of miracles. Simply stated, miracles are a natural consequence of joining. Magic is your attempt to do miracles on your own. In the early stages of your learning, you will be tempted to play a game of make believe. You will not believe that you are not your body, but you would make believe that you are not.” (ACOL, C:10.11)

Do we believe that we are our body? Pure and simple? Just the body, or are we beginning to see that the body is something that carries us, and that we ourselves are something else entirely?

Coming to this understanding is something the miracle will do for us. We will begin to believe in the intangible. We will see that we are spirit, occupying the space that is the body. And we will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that life goes on after the “death” of the body.

This belief in life after death is a major blessing of the miracle. Many of our fears have centered on the belief that we didn’t survive the death of the body, or we survived in a hell (of our own making), or we survived in we knew not what. We still don’t know the what of our survival beyond the death of the body, but we can intuit that what we will find will be good. And the miracle does that for us.

When we join with each other, we know miracles as a natural consequence of this joining. We are recognizing that we are not separate, as we have thought for eons. So what is there to fear? Many of our fears, just like uncertainty about the afterlife, have centered on the fact that we thought ourselves all alone, with nobody on whom we could depend except those in our special relationships. Joining, by implication, moves beyond special relationships to something better—holy relationships. We let go when we need to, but we will always have people in our lives who are there for us. We don’t have to fall in line with the drama of special relationships, for we know the true and the real of the holy. And with this another miracle has happened.

Let miracles happen today. Join freely with the others who surround us. What we give, we receive—as we have long known but didn’t know how to put into practice.

Now we know. We just reach out in love, for we have cast fear—at least for today—aside. And the miracle that envelops us will keep fear at bay.

Just love without expectations. And what we get in return will dwarf our expectations. Love is the thing. The only thing.

A Miracle of Transcendence

“It is your continuing desire to have a relationship only with the world without that causes such a world to remain. This is because your definition of relationship is not one of joining. What you join with becomes real. As you take it into your Self you thereby make it real because you make it one with your real Self. This is reality. All you do not join with remains outside and is illusion, for what is not one with you does not exist.” (ACOL, C:5.17)

This world in which we find ourselves is illusion, and yet we, in our limited way, think that this illusory world is all that matters. We don’t have to think this way. We can have it another way, a better way. We can join with what surrounds, and in the joining does what surrounds us become internal and therefore one with us. This makes for a miracle of transcendence. We have taken this world into our Self and in the doing of this, this world becomes reality. It is one with us.

These are theological ideas, and, as such, can easily become divisive. We do not have to allow the theology of A Course of Love to divide us. We can accept what comes easily and effortlessly, and we can leave the remainder for another day. Not all of us, even genuine enthusiasts of ACOL, believe that the reality in which we find ourselves is illusion. And, certainly, this one passage indicates that when we join with the outer world, the outer world does become reality. True reality. The Self has encompassed the whole in which we find ourselves. And we are home in God, for God is the All, the One, in which we are enmeshed.

This one idea from this passage, the fact that when we join with the outer reality, it becomes real to us, is an idea of major importance. It answers some of the critics of A Course of Love, some who would say that not believing in the illusion of the physical world is a litmus test for our genuineness in our study, or even in the genuineness of A Course of Love.

Dwell with these ideas a while. See if they speak to us. I believe that they will. When we join with the outer world, we are joining with our concept of Love, and what we join with, in Love, becomes a part of us, a part of the true reality in which we find ourselves.
And finally we are indeed home in God.

Miracles Appear Right Before Our Amazed Eyes

“Miracles create an out-of-pattern time interval. Thus living in a state of miracle-readiness is the creation of a new reality outside of the pattern of ordinary time. Although this state exists as the already accomplished, it is up to you to create it for yourself.” (ACOL, 6.9)

This quotation, about miracles, is part of the theology of A Course of Love, but it builds on the theology of A Course in Miracles. The salient point is the “out-of-time” aspect of miracles. Jesus first said in ACIM that he would arrange space and time to allow us to work the miracles that he picked out for us to work. Not any of us understand how he can do this, but he has said many other things that strain credulity, and I trust him on this. He follows up the ACIM assertion with this point in ACOL: “Miracles create an out-of-pattern time interval.”

What are we to make of this? Miracles are outside time and space. By the very nature of their occurrence, miracles are a one-time thing. And we don’t always know when we have performed a miracle. The miracle may mean something to somebody else, but with a lost meaning on us.

The time of that miracles take thus creates another reality, a new reality outside, as we have said, ordinary time. We must agree to work this new creation. We are not left out of the equation.

This state of miracle readiness is already accomplished, but our cooperation is necessary for the miracle to work. We have to be there. Then we will see changes in our world that we never dreamed of. The new world will be created right before our amazed eyes.

PART 3: WHAT IS TRUE REALITY? CHARACTERISTICS OF REALITY

We Are Spirits Having a Bodily Experience

“The miracle sets reality where it belongs. Reality belongs only to spirit, and the miracle acknowledges only truth.” (ACIM, T-1.IV.2)

We are spirits having a bodily experience. We are not primarily bodies. Even when we have reached Christ-consciousness, and even when we have sustained that Christ-consciousness, living the elevated Self of form that Jesus extols, we still are, at base spirits. Our spirits can recognize a miracle when we see one. Skepticism has been discarded, and we revel in the glory of a true reality that is always and only miraculous.

Our true reality has spirit, then, at its base. And until we recognize this as what true reality really means, we will be to some extent at loose ends. We like physicality, or we would not have incarnated in flesh. Don’t you think we had some choice in the matter? (A Course of Love is silent on this question.) If we did have some choice, then it is true, as Jesus says, that the choice to occupy an elevated Self of form in an eternity is really ours.
Nobody needs to make a decision like this now. The world as it exists today would not be desirable as an eternal home. But a portion of the entity who we are might very well choose to live on this earth, bringing ourselves and others to salvation. Jesus says in A Course in Miracles that the return of everyone to God may take millions of years. We do not have to be daunted by this suggestion. We can, instead, be grateful that our existence is about to take on new meaning in this world. We have the means before us to reach Christ-consciousness, to live with miracles surrounding us all the time. We have the new revelations (as I view them) of A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love. Both books speak to our time, in language that understands secular psychology (hence the emphasis on the “ego”) and, at the same time, acknowledges the depth of generations to a mystical tradition.

We are truly in an enviable position now. We are in the time of Christ, a time awaited by many for centuries before us.

Walk into the Light of Miracles Personified

“You do not doubt that the body’s eyes can see. You do not doubt the images they show you are reality. Your faith lies in darkness, not the light. How can this be reversed? For you it is impossible, but you are not alone in this.” (ACIM, W-91)

We are not alone. In the terms of A Course in Miracles, we always have the Holy Spirit with us—there, guiding us, if we are willing to listen. And we don’t really see anything except illusions with the physical eyes. We see truly when we have vision that is not of the physical eyes. Then we are not seeing “images” at all, but true reality.

If we can just remember that we are not alone, even when all around us the world seems to be disintegrating, then we will be reassured always. Even if the outer world weren’t in disarray (which it is), then our surrounding world does tend to fall apart from time to time. Then we need to keep the faith, to know that our guidance is true, that there is a legitimate, good, way out. And we are certain that all of our worries are usually borrowed troubles.

We need to doubt that the body’s eyes see truly. When we let that doubt in, we are primed for seeing with real vision. We see the intangibles that are all around us, even when things are going badly. We can, once again, see truth, beauty, sunlight, a beautiful morning, love, the affection that we get from our most significant others. We know, most of all, that we are all in this together. We don’t lament our lot in life any longer.

And it is no mystery why we are healed.

Illusory Past Is Gone

“If you believe the holy instant is difficult for you, it is because you have become the arbiter of what is possible, and remain unwilling to give place to One Who knows. The whole belief in orders of difficulty in miracles is centered on this. Everything God wills is not only possible, but has already happened. And that is why the past is gone. It never happened in reality. Only in your mind, which thought it did, is its undoing needful.” (ACIM, T-18.IV.8)

We do not prepare ourselves for the holy instant. The holy instant comes to us as a gift, free, of the Holy Spirit. And the bestowal is a miracle which we do not seek to “deserve.” We cannot deserve a miracle; miracles are shifts from horizontal to vertical perception that allows us access to God Himself. Jesus decides when these miracles come to us, and he, in turn, alerts us as to what miracles are ripe for us to perform. We think, in our ignorance, that there are orders of difficulty in miracles—but illusions aren’t hard to change, once the perceiver is recognized. And we are the perceiver.

The past was made up of illusions, and we don’t have to cling to illusions. We can give them up as easily as we made them up.

Let’s give up illusions of a frightful past today, knowing that we have this action in our power. Ask for help, if need be, and you will find help surround you. True reality then will follow on the heels of the victory of giving up illusions.