1 – Beloved
“The gentle have no pain. They cannot suffer. Why would they not be joyous? They are sure they are beloved and must be safe. (M13)”
Gentleness works. On the days that I am most gentle, I walk a smooth pathway. Nothing fazes me. Life is good. Part of this blessing is that I know that I am safe in this world, regardless of what the world throws at me.
2 – Safety
You are safe also. All of us are equal children of God, receiving equal blessings when we come to ourselves enough to ask for those blessings. But we must ask. The Bible is filled with examples of blessings that can be ours, but for which we must ask (ACIM tenet).
3 – Greedy?
We are not being greedy when we ask for what God wants for us anyway. He wants all good for us. Never is He guilty of bringing to us pain; we do this to ourselves.
4 – Personal Experience
When I was growing up, I did not want to be greedy in any sense at all. My mother told me that she and my father had a hard time knowing what Santa should bring, because I would not name what I wanted.
5 – Personal Experience II
Later on, when I was 25, I saw a vision (hallucination) of my bad karma, and it was the fact that I wanted to “get mine.” This is technically called “rapaciousness,” and William Faulkner, Nobel Prize laureate, has a great deal to say about this character trait. It is wanting for self, a reaching forth in a negative fashion. Loosely understood, it is greed.
6 – Restlessness
But gentleness quells all this restlessness to “have.” It is quite true that God wants us to have everything good, and we will not be satisfied until we do have everything. The ego tells us that sometimes we separate out something very desirable (from the ego’s standpoint) as if to say that having this one thing, we will forego all other (ACIM paraphrase). Yet this fails to satisfy, if we succeed in getting this desired goal. For we want everything, and everything does belong to us in truth.
7 – Joy
“Joy goes with gentleness as surely as grief attends attack. (M13)”
We will be happy if we can remain gentle; this is joy. We will certainly feel remorse, at least later on, if we succumb to attack; this is the tragedy of grief experienced.
8 – Attack
It is true that momentarily after attack, we may feel better, not worse. This is because we think, erroneously, that we have gotten rid of the guilt that has otherwise dogged us on our paths. But we haven’t really gotten rid of the guilt. It has, instead, become enhanced through our giving in to attack. This is the folly that we don’t see when suddenly we “see red.”
9 – Find the Gentleness
To find the joy, we must find the gentleness. To remove the grief, we must disavow attack. This formula works in daily life. Why don’t we all give it a try?
“God’s teachers trust in Him. And they are sure His Teacher goes before them, making sure no harm can come to them. They hold His gifts and follow in His way, because God’s Voice directs them in all things. (M13)”
Yet another passage affirming the validity of guidance by the Holy Spirit, Who is identified here as God’s Voice, we know that this is true—if we have studied A Course in Miracles to any extent at all. The Holy Spirit, to Whom we give up our own puny judgment, gives us our real will. And we are made happy in this exchange.
10 – No Harm!
No harm! Yes! Even bad things lose their sting. We know that our real Self, the Christ within, cannot be harmed in any way. Let the world do what it will, we are safe.
11 – Song of Thanks
“Joy is their song of thanks. . . .How joyous it is to share the purpose of salvation! (M13)”
Would it not be a wonderful thing to be joyous all the time! That is indeed the very blessing that is held out to us in Awakening. I have a friend who experienced Awakening some 30 years ago, and she is a prime example of happiness in life. The negative does not hurt her at all. She sees the bigger picture.
12 – Awakening
And so can we all, even before we experience enlightenment. Enlightenment is increasing in numbers, according to Eckhart Tolle, but is still comparatively rare. Let us run with patience the race that is set before us (from the Bible), knowing what the glorious end will be.
May I give up attack in all my dealings with my brothers and sisters. This one step will give me joy. Gentleness will also accompany this change in me.
Thank you for the courage to give up attack. Help me to realize that it offers nothing that I want, and everything that I do not want. Lead me along Your pathway to joy, led by the gentleness that You will help me to acquire.