Tag Archives: neurosis

Tending Your Garden

la-prominade-75 - monet“This holy relationship is what you are called to cultivate as a gardener cultivates her garden. The gardener knows that although the plant exists fully realized within its seed, it also needs the relationship of earth and water, light and air. The gardener knows that tending the garden will help it to flourish and show its abundance. The gardener knows she is part of the relationship that is the garden. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Nature of Unity and Its Recognition, 12.10)”

Affirmation: “I will spend time tending my garden today.”

Reflections:

1 – Holy Relationship

The holy relationship is a relationship not only with others, but also with the Self. We reach inwardly and outwardly. And we tend what we find there. What exactly do we do?

2 – Meditative Work

There are ways that we can enhance our relationship to our Self as well as with our brothers and sisters. Earlier, Jesus mentioned meditation, yoga, affirmations as ways to grow in grace (though he did not use that term “grace”). Tending the garden is an ongoing process that in itself is meditative. Think of the gardener who loves the work of a physical garden. Do he/she not feel rejuvenated by the work that is done in the garden? It is the same here in the realm of the mind and heart, the wholeheartedness that Jesus has set forth. We do not struggle to tend. We just relax in the meditative expanse of our days.

3 – Ego

The ego would try to tend the plants without relationship (from ACOL). The ego would believe that relationship is not primary, and that the personal self is all that is important. When we are selfishly hung up on the ego, we are not mindful of our Self or of others. Sometimes someone will wonder if we actually “like” people, perhaps including ourselves. We may be so hung up on personal problems that we think that the only one we can care about is ourselves: It is enough just to keep ourselves going, and we can’t mind other people as well. They are seen as a distraction.

4 – Special Relationships

This set of mind, that relationship is unneeded and even impossible, given our state of mind, is just where the ego would have us be. The ego thinks that holy relationships, especially, are beside the point. The only relationship which the ego thinks of any benefit to the personal self is the special relationship. And we know where this leads. To pain and sometimes suffering.

5 – Special into Holy Relationships

But when we turn our special relationships into holy ones, we tend our garden in the process. This metaphor of the garden is particularly dear to the heart of Jesus, we must intuit. Later on, in the Dialogues of A Course of Love, he devotes a whole chapter to the concept. Here he is just getting started with the topic.

6 – Neurosis

Try to think today of ways that you can leave neurosis behind, and with neurosis, the ego. Try to become acquainted with the Self today. Leave time for others, for the holy relationships that we are developing with our brothers and sisters. The time of today will be well spent, and we will have followed Jesus’s advice to tend our garden.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I would tend my garden today, especially my relationship to my Self and my significant others. If others are stressed, I would remain calm, secure in the Self, leaving the ego behind. Help me especially to be patient today.

This day can go smoothly if I remember You. You are my Rock, my assurance that what I do with Your blessing will turn out alright.

Help me to think and to do with Your blessing today.

Amen

The Secret of Salvation

“The secret of salvation is but this:  That you are doing this unto yourself.  No matter what the form of the attack, this still is true.  Whoever takes the role of enemy and of attacker, still is this the truth. (T587-T588)”

 

Affirmation:  “I am doing this unto myself.”

Reflections:

1 – Are We “Blaming the Victim”?

If life seems very hard, we can think of these words.  They are not easy to understand, because they sound like a “blame the victim” scenario.  But the Course never intends this.  We do not consciously bring bad things upon ourselves, at least most of the time.  And the evil that is in the world is not our own personal fault.

2 – Some Misinterpretation of ACIM

This aspect of the Course has been misinterpreted by many people.  And many have rejected it because of the “victim” problem.

3 – Pain vs. Suffering

Do not reject any longer.  With the help of the Holy Spirit, we will see happier days.  We will ponder the happenings around us, and they will cause pain.  But suffering is our own choice, and we can choose to turn over to the Holy Spirit all things that hurt.  This includes for others as well as ourselves.

4 – From Eckhart Tolle

We never have to let pain turn into suffering, though most of us are not so evolved as to miss this mistake in all instances.  Eckhart Tolle in A New Earth says a great deal about the fact that it is ourselves who turn pain into suffering.  He has a concept called the “pain body” that he believes is activated either frequently or infrequently in virtually everyone.  This concept is not a part of A Course in Miracles, but Eckhart quotes from ACIM, and so his study, following his Awakening, included ACIM.  And he does not, in the reading that I have done of Eckhart, ever say anything that contradicts ACIM.

5 – Choose Again

When we realize that we are doing this unto ourselves, we can choose again.  And that is a very important concept.  We need simply to start the day afresh, regardless of what hour on the clock the day actually is.  (ACIM recommends starting the day afresh if we begin amiss.)  I often start the day again, because I have a tendency to arise with a great deal of pressure to get started on what I need to do on any given day.  (This compulsion dissipates in an hour or two, but why stay with such a compulsion even an hour?)

6 – Choose to Be Free of Neurosis

We must choose again.  That is the only way that we will be free of the neurosis that has dogged our days.  And Jesus can heal us of our madness, our insanity–the state of virtually everyone in this world.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

When my day turns grim, may I pause just a moment and remember that I can choose again.  I absolutely do not have to turn pain into suffering, an idea that Eckhart reminds me.  I would not let fears that I am blaming myself for my misfortune turn me into bitterness, even for a second.  I would know that bitterness is a form of insanity, of neurosis, and I would be free of the madness that is surely elicited by listening to the ego’s madness.

I would not be egotistical today.  I would let my ego wither away, and I would ask Your help in doing this.  Any time that I am tempted to let pride intrude, a false pride that is disastrous, I would ask that my Guide gently remind that I have turned aside from walking the pathway to You.  And I would walk the pathway to You on a constant basis.

Be with me on this, a sunny day outside. May the joy that spring will surely bring help me to remember to thank You for this beautiful world.  We have spoiled the environment in some ways, but may we know that the beauty is always there, waiting to be reclaimed.

I thank You in advance for keeping me “in the flow” of You and Your gifts today.  May I follow my intuition unfailingly, unless I am misled by an egotistical thought that would take me away from You.  

Thank You for Your felt Presence.

Amen.