Tag Archives: punishment

Give Up Your Little Life Beset with Fear

1 – Waking

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

2 – God

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

3 – No Retribution

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

4 – Fear?

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

5 – God Calls

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

6 – Heaven

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

7 – Christ Self

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

8 – Meditation

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

9 – Release

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

10 – Judgments

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

11 – A Call from God

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

12 – Listen

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

Dear Father/Mother,

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

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

Amen.

The Ego Believes that by Punishing Itself It Will Mitigate the Punishment of God

“The ego believes that by punishing itself it will mitigate the punishment of God. (T84-85)”

Affirmation: “The ego believes. . .mitigate the punishment of God.”

Reflections:

1 – Masochism

This passage seems to explain masochism. We think that if we cause pain to ourselves first, then God’s punishment of us (in which we erroneously believe) will be lessened.

2 – Insane Thinking

This is insane thinking. The ego is insane. Let us not forget this concept of A Course in Miracles.

3 – Punished Less?

We think that we will be punished less if we level the punishment on ourselves. We are trying to manipulate God, who actually does not punish at all. But we ourselves make a grievous mistake when we seek to bring down hell fire on our heads. What a waste!

4 – Arrogance

“Yet even in this it is arrogant. It attributes to God a punishing intent, and then takes this intent as its own prerogative. (T85)”

The ego is always arrogant. That is why, when we give ourselves noble intentions, the ego often tells us that WE are arrogant. We are children of God, who when we are in our Self, are not arrogant at all. God has given us a very lofty purpose—forgiveness, salvation, happiness—that we are not meeting, and therefore we feel guilty. But our sense of guilt needs to be overcome. And it certainly does not merit punishment, which is masochism.

5 – Egotistic Thinking

We in our egoistic thinking do not have to punish ourselves at all. To do so actually is the reverse of what we want, for any number of reasons, including the fact that punishing ourselves strengthens the ego. We want to let the ego wither away. In no way does God punish us. This concept of A Course in Miracles is in line with the New Testament, but opposed to the Old Testament. May we accept Jesus’s teaching in both ACIM and the New Testament, and know God as a loving and accepting God who wants only the best for us. Anything else we have unconsciously chosen, and this can be changed with the right understanding, and the right reflection upon what we are actually doing to ourselves.

6 – What Do You Want?

“The ego cannot oppose the laws of God any more than you can, but it can interpret them according to what it wants, just as you can. That is why the question, ‘What do you want?’ must be answered. You are answering it every minute and every second, and each moment of decision is a judgment that is anything but ineffectual. (T85)”

We must ask ourselves, not the ego, but our real Self, what we want in every moment which we view as a moment of choice. We get guidance, sure, but we still have the right to refuse that guidance (though that is not wise). And when we set ourselves on the right course, we take the next right action without consciously asking for advice from the Holy Spirit.

7 – The Question

“What do we want?” is an especially potent question, filled with meaning and lofty with purpose. If we want God and God alone, we are on the right track. If we want the things of this world first, we have our priorities skewed. If we want God first of all, all of the things of the world will be added according to our need and often according to our want. This is New Testament thinking that is supported also by the later ACIM. Jesus does not change his mind in that regard.

Prayer:

Dear Father,

May I know that there is no need for me to punish myself for anything that I have done. I may know guilt, and this is a form of punishment. God would never punish; it is always us that are doing this.

May my ego wither away. I have prayed for this often, and so I have not accepted the truth of this promise that it can wither away. May I accept this promise now and forevermore.

May this day go smoothly for myself and all who read this prayer. May we walk in Your way, sure of our purpose and certain of Your love. Thank You for the presence of Yourself that so often I feel.

Amen.

The Last Judgment Is a Final Healing rather than a Meting Out of Punishment

“The Last Judgment is generally thought of as a procedure undertaken by God. Actually it will be undertaken by my brothers with my help. It is a final healing rather than a meting out of punishment, however much you may think that punishment is deserved. (T34)”

Affirmation: “The Last Judgment. . .a final healing”

Reflections:

1 – Healing

The Last Judgment is usually fraught with fear. The way Jesus explains it, though, it is a healing, not an opportunity to determine if punishment is justified. This is a much more modern way of interpreting the Last Judgment, and also much more in line with the love that emanates from the New Testament. What would an angry God want to do with His children but to heal them? Why would He punish in some hell-fire-and-brimstone way? What good would that do? And how could we still believe this of a loving God?

2 – Traditional Concepts

We couldn’t believe the traditional hell of a loving God, although perhaps in an earlier era people were “scared” into heaven by sermons warning of hell. Maybe. I’m not so sure. I think that the “hell” concept has made many enemies for God, many people who don’t believe that He could do such a thing. And indeed, A Course in Miracles tells us that God cannot.

3 – Brothers

There is an indication here of our “brothers,” working with Jesus, to carry out the Last Judgment. There are no other indications in the Course of what Jesus meant, aside from the tenet that our brothers are our way home, that we learn through our holy relationships. I once had a waking dream, a kind of hypnosis, in which a brother of mine walked me through the Last Judgment. I was asked to do all kinds of things in my life (most of which I have done, later on), and I cried during the trance that I felt myself in. But was this the brother, sent by Jesus, to walk me through the Last Judgment? I think that he was, for he meant many things to me, and he was an advanced spiritual soul.

4 – Holy Relationship

We must just accept the idea that Jesus puts forth in this passage, without being able, within ACIM or without, to understand the message fully. As time passes, perhaps we will come to understand. It is perhaps in the final working out of the holy relationship that the Last Judgment actually takes place.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

My I no more fear the Last Judgment. I do not understand how my brothers will help with the Last Judgment, but I trust what Jesus has said.

May I endeavor to have holy relationships with all of my brothers. May this concept grow in time, and may I feel your blessing in it.

Amen.