Tag Archives: time of Christ

New Order of Reality Dawns

“[T]urn to face the direction of the arising sun, and go into a simple prayer. . . .

“Breathe deeply into the body, relax the mind, and begin simply to say within yourself:

“Death has occurred, and now the birth of Christ is at hand.

“Father, I accept fully your will for me. Your will is only that I be happy and use time to extend my treasure.

“Now I receive the warmth of your Light and your Love.

. . .

“And when the whole body—from the crown of the head to the tips of the toes and down through each finger—is filled with light, then gently open the eyes of Christ, and let yourself see a new world, a new creation, a new beginning. Now the journey to the Kingdom is over, and the journey within it can begin. Graduate school is just around the corner.” (“The Way of the Heart,” WOM, Lesson 10, Page 131 – 132)

The above quotation illustrates what we might do and say to welcome Awakening into our lives. And doing so means that “graduate school,” living as an awakened individual, is here.

Not all of us have come this far. But there are indications that many of us are far along the pathway. The “celestial speedup,” which Jesus described in A Course in Miracles, is well underway, and we are now, according to A Course of Love, living in the time of Christ. These are harbingers of a new order on the horizon. And for this to be true, many of us will see Awakening as a true process that takes us into a new world.

Have patience. Above all, don’t blame God if Awakening does not seem to come when we ask. We may not be ready. The subconscious needs to be cleansed, all the way down. And that may take some doing.

Stay the course. Know that the time will be as right as the Answer.
The way back to God is effortless on our part. Can we understand this? No, for we get upset when we realize the work done by the Holy Spirit or the Christ-Mind is so disproportionate to what we are doing. Let God move us, tell us when and where to act, what to think, how to pray.

We live a cosmic second, even in a long lifetime. Our time is not God’s.

So know that we are staying the course, and all will be well.

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.

Ordinary People Living Ordinary Lives Can Change This World

“The instant the idea of separation entered the mind of God’s Son, in that same instant was God’s Answer given. In time this happened very long ago. In reality it never happened at all.” (ACIM, M-2.2)

This quotation is part of the theology of A Course in Miracles. God’s Answer to the separation is meant to be the Holy Spirit, which is also known as God’s Voice, and the Universal Inspiration.

With God, as He has made with us, the solution is always found with the problem. And here the separation from God seemed to happen, and here God answered immediately with the Holy Spirit. During the time of the Holy Spirit (the last 2,000 years), we need simply to appeal to Him, and our needs are answered. We may not always recognize what the Answer has been, but this is true nevertheless. God has not left us comfortless.

In reality, we did not separate from God at all, though we have always thought that we did. We could not separate from God and live, because we are a part of Him. He dwells deep within, and we project outward to an illusory world that seems to contain us in physicality. Indeed, outside of true reality, we have “fallen” indeed, and the way back may take a very long time indeed. Jesus says in A Course in Miracles that it may take millions of years, possibly longer, for all human beings to return, as the “separation” happened over a similarly long period of time. This may be disturbing and discouraging, but Jesus does not gloss over the facts. We have a lot to do to bring ourselves and others back into the fold.

God’s Answer is always there for us, if we are following ACIM (A Course of Love counsels the inner Christ Spirit as our way back, because the time of the Holy Spirit has passed, and we are now living in the time of Christ). People will not, we believe, live in terrible circumstances for all of these millions of years. As more of us awaken, our pathway will seem brighter, and ACIM also says that the Holy Spirit brings happy dreams.

A Course of Love counsels that the elevated Self of form will live in this world, a new world that we are creating as we grow spiritually. Physicality is not bad or wrong, but separation and the egoic thoughts that it brings can be terrible in the extreme. We can safely reside in the physical form when we have sustained Christ-consciousness or Awakening. The future that we will create, a new world, is yet to be determined, but Jesus seems very hopeful in ACOL. He does not predict what we will do; probable realities prevent accurate prognostication. But our way will be easier as we walk a closer path with God.

Ordinary people living ordinary lives can make quite a difference.

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.

By Ivor Sowton: The Time Is Now! A Note on the Appreciation of Others

Jesus in A Course of Love (ACOL), as he does in A Course in Miracles (ACIM), and for that matter in the New Testament (“Love Thy neighbor as thyself”), is often working to convince us of the critical importance of appreciating our brothers and sisters in our lives just as they seem to be occurring to us.

In the New Testament (our reading of which is admittedly encumbered by the passage of two millennia and translations from Aramaic to Greek to Latin to English, with numerous political influences on the translations by all accounts), Jesus still comes through with the same basic message: we are to recognize whom we perceive to be “others” as ourselves, and this will lead us into the Kingdom of Heaven. Moreover, we are to forgive “our transgressor” (that is, the one we thought had done us wrong!) 70X7 times–meaning all the time!

In ACIM, Jesus has many extremely beautiful and powerful Workbook Lessons devoted to “seeing our brother differently” as a way of letting go of our grievance against him, as our grievance can only hamper our own experience of the enveloping Peace of God. Original ACIM teacher Ken Wapnick put it in such an effective way by saying “No one but YOU can prevent your own direct experience of the Peace of God!” So when we really do the insight work asked of us in any of these great Dispensations from Jesus, we eventually see that we were judging “someone else” in order to remain separated and unrelated to them and a lot of others like them, making us vastly superior to “them” and effectively blocking access to Divine Love and Peace– FOR US! When we finally see this (!), then we undertake the undoing of “the old thought system” that both ACIM and ACOL refer to so often.

In A Course of Love, Jesus is in my opinion gives a current re-tuning of that eternal message of love, by which I mean he uses terminology and insight into our present time realities in a way that can be extremely helpful to us. In the wonderful Third Treatise, Jesus leads us into an understanding of our own unique role in a world that has become over-populated with humans, many of whom seemed determined to operate by the old paradigm of “kill or be killed,” also known as “the survival of the fittest.” This is the old ego thought system that has literally run the show for us humans here on Earth for AT LEAST the full length of our recorded history (which is at least seven thousand years–a pretty good chunk of time!), and by extrapolation for long long before that.

Now, however, we are coming into a truly New Age, according to this Great Master in this great Work. In “The New,” children now being born into “The Time of Christ” will have now have no desire to form a separate and conflicted ego, and will only settle for its provisional establishment while they wait for something MUCH BETTER, which they seem to be “geared” to expect as natural and the way things should be. All this is to be found at the end of the Third Treatise of ACOL, which I cannot recommend more highly!

My job as a man in his 60s, as I now understand it from this Teaching, is to hold a space for these new ones coming into a Higher Age–an age much closer to the Gates of Heaven, as the end of the Text of ACIM would say. My generation can and should mentor the young, of course (we just had our first grandchild, and it makes me appreciate just how helpless and dependent we are on our adult relatives when we “pop in” as 7-9 pound infants!) But as we help raise the young we can also be trying to cultivate an attitude of sincere appreciation for who they are in their True Natures.

Perhaps we could look at it this way. A highly advanced, highly empathic and very compassionate Alien first coming into contact with Earth and its dominant species right now would most probably be VERY CONCERNED for our continued existence, and any potential ability to thrive in harmony with all might well appear to be an almost impossibly remote chance! Overpopulation, extreme concentration of wealth in the hands of a privileged few while the masses languish, huge ongoing wars causing massive loss of life, impoverishment and starvation, huge stockpiles of armed nuclear warheads just waiting for “parts of the Sonship” crazy enough to set them off, easily preventable environmental degradation including the now exponential global warming—all with the powers that be seemingly having no desire to do anything different from what got us into this mess in the first place!

So it is actually a daunting scenario. The thing that can turn it around, according to Jesus in the ACOL, is a whole new state of consciousness, which he calls the Elevated Self of Form. This is our sense of ourselves becoming hugely expanded through receiving the Christ Consciousness of Unity in Relationship with ALL our brothers and sisters. He entreats us very directly and personally here in the Fourth Treatise:

“What you are called to do is to, through your multitude, sustain Christ-consciousness, and thus create the union of the human and the divine as new state of being.” (4.18)

May we all be empowered to do this, whatever the apparent age of our bodies! We are coming into a very auspicious time, according to our Great Master. Time to jump on the bandwagon!

Jesus: Not One Day Is Meant to Be Lived in a Struggle with What It Brings, by Ivor Sowton

Now I will tell you something else and I hope you will remember it and bid it true. Each day is a Creation and Holy too. Not one day is meant to be lived in a struggle with what it brings.

This is Jesus being very direct and personal with us in the context of A Treatise on the New ( 2.21) in A Course of Love (ACOL).

Now, with the coming of the New Year, I for one am realizing that New Year’s resolutions can be a very good thing. For instance, what if I resolve to live by what Jesus is saying here? Something like, “In the New Year I resolve to see each day as a new opportunity, ripe with lesson-blessings that can lead only to the greater good of all?”

Jesus in ACOL is teaching us that a new time is really upon us. He says that we chose to take physical bodies as a holy and creative act, and that we were not more holy or good before the “separation” than we were after it. But he says that something went wrong with this innocent choice we all made as one. We got out of synch with God as our Source somehow. We somehow fell out of unity and relationship with God and with our brothers and sisters, or rather, with the active remembrance of that. But now we are in a different age–the time of Christ. It is actually easier for us to remember that unity and relationship now!

As the master teacher that he is, Jesus emphasizes that this does not at all imply any superiority we might claim to those who have come before us (besides which he tacitly acknowledges reincarnation, so if we are judging “them”, we are judging us). He says that the truth is the truth and has always been available to people’s memories. But the age is now more favorable to direct knowing, through observation of what is, as it actually is. Before this age we needed contrast as the teaching device that would differentiate Godward leading attitudes from ego attitudes of separation.

There is a bandwagon we can jump on now. This New Year!

Now, I don’t know about you, but my ego is quite strong still. Like, I still want to be separate quite a bit, even though I know it’s not the way to go. So I take great encouragement from the idea that the new is here and that I can indeed find huge reinforcement for any longing for the restoration of unity and relationship that I can muster up in this New Year. Like, enough suffering already! God is not vengeful, not mad at me. And my brothers and sisters are not lost to me, though it sometimes still feels like that. Each day can indeed be a new day, a new chance for this slow learner!

Jesus talks in this Treatise of the New of the children being born now as being ready for the time of Christ. He says “Those born in the Time of Christ will settle for nothing less than the truth and will soon begin looking earnestly for it. Even the ego-self will be perceived clearly by these, and they will not want it for their identity…” (1.26) Those of us with grey hairs are spoken of as at a real choice point. We could die in the old consciousness, the old school of hard knocks–and that wouldn’t make us wrong or bad. But we could also open up to the vast new positive influence of the time of Christ. I don’t know about you, but this is the perfect sop to my self-image–like I’ll be darned if I’m going to pass up a golden opportunity for higher consciousness just because I’ve got a few more years on the chassis than these young whippersnappers coming in now!

The time of Christ seems characterized by a much greater Self-authority than before, by which I mean, there is a natural gradient now toward awakening to unity, and our greater Selves know this. It will be much more fluid, with you being the teacher today and me being the teacher tomorrow, and with neither of us having an ego-investment in that. Truth is the teacher now, and we are here to help each other tune into that. Of course we don’t know it perfectly all the time, but any need for shame about that is entirely obsolete. Each day brings lessons that are blessings and only blessings, for they are leading toward ynity in relationship, where all is love and only love.

So, in this New Year, make some good resolutions! You are beloved of God. You cannot lose. You can slumber more. . .OR you can open up to a great Godward current operating now in this new time of Christ. Just try to take each day as new, fresh, unencumbered by past fears and misunderstandings. If there is fear there is also Help available for seeing things in a new and loving Light. If there is pain, there is also Hope in the same experience.

May each day be truly new for you and yours in this New Year. Happy New Year indeed!

The embrace is inclusive. All are chosen. (Jesus in 1.12, A Treatise on the New, A Course of Love)

Time of Heaven on Earth

1 – Now

“Could it [what has been activated now] have been activated hundreds or thousands of years ago, by countless souls more worthy than you, and ushered in the time of heaven on earth and the end of suffering long ago? (The Treatises of A Course of Love: “A Treatise on the New,” 1.13)”

2 – Goal

This may be our goal, but first we must understand it. We must, I think, recognize that a certain humility is asked of all of us. Simply because we are seekers, we are not better than others who have come before us.

3 – Not Ready

Previously, most of us as a people in this world were not yet ready for Christ-consciousness. Since the time of Jesus in his physical life over 2,000 years ago, and at his instigation, we have been living in the time of the Holy Spirit. This is what Pentecost was all about.

4 – Old Testament/Hebrew Bible

Certain prophets from earlier times were gifted with guidance in what appear to be supernatural ways. These occurrences are resplendent in the Old Testament. So there has been a natural progression for humankind.

5 – Time of Christ

But now, in the Twenty First Century, we are ready to move into the time of Christ. This new era is upon us, though not all of our brothers and sisters know it yet. Their understanding will come in time. In the meantime, we are not to judge them in any way because we believe that we have been led farther along the pathway, to a way of knowing by observation and not by learning.

6 – Past

“It is in this way that time is not real and will no longer be real to you as you come to live by the truth. It is in this way that the truth of the past still lives and that the illusion of the past never was. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: A Treatise on the New, 1:16)”

7 – Time

This quotation talks, in a somewhat difficult way, about time. It suggests that time is an illusion, like this world in which time holds sway.

8 – All Time

The past does not really exist; neither does the future. All time is currently present, but is spread out, from past to present to future, so that we can experience what is going on around us, and so we can experience ourselves. Without time, we would be sent into eternity, where we really are anyway. We are in eternity, the ever-present Now.

9 – New Era

Since the past does not really exist, we can understand that the time in which we live is different from that illusory past. We are living in a new era, Jesus says in A Course of Love: We are living in the “time of Christ.”

10 – Joyous

Is this not joyous news? What does it mean? It is up to us to write the meaning upon the world, for Jesus tells us elsewhere that he doesn’t predict the future, and that he doesn’t have the knowledge that will map out for us what we are to say and do. We are all saying and doing together. And what we make of this world in the time of Christ has yet to be written.

11 – Difference

“The difference between this time and the time that has been but seemed to have gone before has already been stated as the difference between the time of the Holy Spirit and the time of Christ. This has also been restated as the difference between the time of learning through contrast and the time of learning through observation. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: A Treatise on the New, 1:17)

12 – ACIM / ACOL

A Course in Miracles was written for the time of the Holy Spirit, and A Course of Love was written for the time of Christ. Of course, we can continue to study each. Many of us are caught in different times, especially since time has no reality anyway.

13 – Observation

But as we move forward in the time of Christ, we will earn through observation, not intense study of readings past and present that seek to tell us what to do. This blog is one such study tool, and perhaps the time will come when the blog will not answer your needs anymore. Then the time is ripe to look around and observe. Just observe.

14 – God

“That you have chosen God and chosen a new means of coming to know the truth—the means of Christ-consciousness, is what has ushered in the new time. (The Treatises of A Course of Love: A Treatise on the New, 1:17)”

15 – Studying

In Christ-consciousness, we do not need to laboriously study any readings. In Christ-consciousness, we are creating our reality as it forms out in front of us. And “creating” is the right word—not “making,” which is what our minds enthralled by the ego, did. What we made was but illusion, dreams, but what we do not has more value than illusions. It is the real world, reality. We are living with the Mind of God is full sway, as we create our reality. We are no longer caught by an image of ourselves, a fantasy that has no meaning outside of our own minds.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I know “heaven on earth” today. I claim this promise now. I know that I do not have to wait until I die to experience a paradise. Even in the midst of this troubled world, I can be at peace and even joyous.

Thank You for your guidance always. May I come into Christ-consciousness on a continuous basis.

Amen.

The Time of Christ

monet's garden“While this has been called the time of Christ, it is obviously no longer the time of Jesus Christ. My time came and my time ended. The time when a single baby born of a virgin mother could change the world has passed. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 21.21)”

Affirmation: “I meditate on Jesus’s place in this world today.”

Reflections:

1 – Jesus Clarifies

Jesus clarifies for us today: He says that this is the time of Christ, but not the time of Jesus Christ. He is saying that the example that he set a couple of thousand years ago is for an earlier time, though we can still learn from this era. One person, even such as he, cannot change this world any longer. He anticipates that many of us will move to make changes that we are led to make by our own internal Christ Self.

2 – Christ Does Not Just Mean Jesus

Also intuited in this brief quotation is the fact that “Christ” does not just mean Jesus. Of course, we have known this, because repeatedly I have referred to the Self/Christ or the Christ Self, and many other current day writers have done the same. “Christ” is an umbrella term for the individual manifestations of God in human beings who are living salvation, living Awakening or Christ-consciousness. And we do not have to sustain the elevated Self of form to live, intermittently, this Christ Self. Indeed, in the beginning, most people see only glimpses of the Self, glimpses that are carefully contained for a while, perhaps a long while.

3 – Personal Experience

I myself have had two extended periods of such glimpses: one when I was 23, for ten weeks over a relaxed summer; and the other when I was 34 to 35, for six months in an altered state of consciousness. I did not sustain either time, and both were many years ago. The second period was while I was first reading A Course in Miracles, and I suspect that I was one of those who was asked to change life experience almost immediately. I moved to another state in the US, and there lived and worked for that six-month period. Later, I returned to home grounds, and proceeded with my life—but a life that would not be the same after this experience.

4 – Continued. . .

Why have I not sustained Awakening? I try not to ask this question, for it suggests that I have somehow failed. I know that such an interpretation is not the whole answer, and so I focus on what I learned in those two altered states of being. In the first and in the second, I was anxiety-free, and so I had left fear behind. Would that this were still possible! But I try to be patient, and to recognize that the elevated Self of form is not often sustained, and I may do more good by detailing my experience of “glimpses” than if I had actually experienced all that Jesus holds out to us as promise.

5 – Listen

So we listen to the Christ Self within. I can imagine that many times we are free of stress and free of fear/anxiety. At such times the ego withers away from our perception. And each such time can be sustained for a while. The fact that we don’t sustain this wonderful state keeps us humble. We realize that we cannot merit this form of heaven, of home. God takes the initiative of reaching down to lift us up when He deems that we are ready. And that first step, we must remember, is His and His alone.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank You for this day, this day of joy. May tomorrow be a harbinger of good times ahead as well. I ask for patience as I run the race that I am set upon. Help me to fulfill Your way in my daily life. Help me to be tolerant and kind. May I be ever more loving.

Guide me each moment, even when I forget. Thank You for Your Presence which fills my life from time to time. Daily life would not be same if You withdrew. Thank You for staying near.

Amen.

Return to Illusions? No!

pennsylvania-impressionist-impressionism-painting-by-george-sotter-autumn-gold-1930-original-size-22-x-26-bucks-county“You will be tempted to return to the house of illusion to gather those within and bid them join you in the reality of the truth. But in this time of Christ, a new time, a time without parallel or comparison, this will not be possible. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 19.15)”

Affirmation: “I will bid others to come, but from the house of truth.”

Reflections:

1 – Explanation

This passage takes some explanation if not familiar with the concepts from A Course of Love. Jesus indicates that many are still in the House of Illusion, which a house which is contained within the House of Truth. Some have ventured from this unstable House of Illusion outside its borders, into the House of Truth—reality, or the real world (an interpretation, not stated in A Course in Miracles or ACOL). If we are outside the House of Illusion, in the House of Truth, we might be tempted to turn again and go back into illusion, if only to bid others to step outside. But Jesus says that it doesn’t work that way. We stay in the House of Truth, and from that vantage point, beckon those still in the House of Illusion to step outside, into the House of Truth.

2 – Confusing?

This may all sound quite confusing, but if one visualizes the concepts, it becomes much easier.

3 – Time of Christ

We are now in the time of Christ, and we do not reenter the House of Illusion once we have emerged from it. This is a welcome thought, because backsliding is a theological concept that has worried many sincere believers. Now Jesus says that our backsliding is not to be a worry for us; we are permanently, in this era of the time of Christ, in the House of Truth.

4 – A New Age

What a joyous word this is—coming from Jesus, who heralds the dawn of a new age. May we take him at his word and not try to reenter a place of pain and suffering, the illusions in which we had been lost, for eons, amid the chaos of the ego. May we step into the real world, and from there it is but a short step into Awakening—when God decides that we are ready (from ACIM).

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

With Your help, I would not return to illusions. I know that Jesus says in this passage for today that we cannot return to illusions in this time of Christ. Many sincere believers have thought otherwise in other eras. May I adopt the thinking of this passage, and be wise in the ways of the new era.

May I not forget those who are still in the House of Illusions. From truth, may I beckon to others, still trapped, to come outside, into truth. May I understand rightly what truth really is. May I be certain that if others are hurt, I have not found truth.

Be with me as I walk into the time of Christ. And may Christ-consciousness comes upon me when You choose. Guide me. Lead me. Love me.

Thank You.

Amen.

The Future Can Be Different from the Past

Vincent_Willem_van_Gogh_015 - cafe terrace at night“You must now birth the idea that human beings do indeed change. While you have known instinctively that there is a core, a center to each that is unchangeable, you must now give up the idea that this core or center has been represented by the past. You must forget the idea that the future cannot be different than the past. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 15.7)”

Affirmation: “The future can be different from the past.”

Reflections:

1 – The Past

The past carries a lot of baggage. Just prior to the passage for today, Jesus gives examples of apprehensions about the future for certain people being any different from their past. He catalogs a student who has done poorly in school in the past (and hopes to change), an alcoholic who is on the wagon (and hopes to stay there), the loved ones of an alcoholic (who hope for the best), and criminals in our penal system who are not really expected to be rehabilitated. In all of these cases, the past can be changed, even though expectations are sometimes low. In today’s passage, Jesus affirms for us that the past does not have to hold us captive. We can change, and so can our circumstances.

2 – Our “Center”

The core or center of a person has not really been represented by the personal self in league with the ego. There is an unchangeable core or center, but for most people we have never seen it. But it is this core or center that is the Self/Christ toward which we are marching. And when this Self/Christ comes forth, the future will be very unlike the past. People will seem to change and to change greatly.

3 – Christ Self

Let us have hope that the individuals in this world will come more and more to rely on the Christ Self that is within. Jesus has said that we are now living in the time of Christ, that the time of the Holy Spirit (represented by A Course in Miracles) is over. By this, I understand him to be saying that those of us who read and take to heart A Course of Love are living in the time of Christ. (This is personal interpretation.) For those still depending upon the Holy Spirit, ACIM is appropriate, but there is a step beyond, in ACOL, that we are seeking. And we can know the Awakening that ACIM holds out to us, and we can know the Christ-consciousness that ACOL discusses, and these two descriptions of enlightenment are different terms for the same phenomenon. Not everybody will reach enlightenment, but many of us will see glimpses of enlightenment in our daily lives. And the extent to which we give over our egoic self-will is the extent to which God (or the Holy Spirit, in ACIM) can work with us. We can change. Let us take steps today that will look inward to that core or center that does not change. Let us realize that the egoic personal self can transform into the holy personal self (an interpretation, not stated as such in either ACIM or ACOL).

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

This is a time of great change for me, and not only in external factors. I hope to change on the inside, so that my central core becomes One with You. Help me to make this transition, a transition that is in line with Your wishes for all of us.

Be with me in the days that follow. May the external changes that I face be gentle and easy. May the internal changes that I hope for come without hassle and upset.

I wish for my brothers and sisters, as well as myself, a good day. I know that if all of us stay attuned to You, the day will go well—regardless of what we face.

Amen.

This Is What You Are Now Called to Do

“This is what you are now called to do:

“Be aware that the love of God lives within you. Live within the peace of God. Live by the truth.

“This could be restated as you are love, you live in peace, you live by or in accord with truth. (Treatises of A Course of Love: Treatise on the Personal Self, 11.7 – 11.9)”

Affirmation: “I will live in love today.”

Reflections:

1 – Jesus

The instructions that Jesus gives today, in this passage from A Course of Love, are not new by any means. But he has an authority that defies explanation, except that he is our chosen leader. He speaks with the authority that he did in the New Testament, when he spoke not as the scribes and Pharisees. It does behoove us to listen to what he tells us in this new century, this time of Christ.

2 – God Is Love

We are to live by the truth that God is love, that we are to live within His peace. Such simple words, but so hard to do! We live in such complicated times, and it would be better if we simplified our lives to reject the complexity, the complexity which is often of the ego.

3 – Live in Love

What does it mean to live in love? As A Course in Miracles tells us, we live in love when we overlook anger and attack from ourselves and others, and by the overlooking, we do not make real, and we are led to forgive the errors made by ourselves and others. This also is easy to say but so hard to do. If we can just remember that we are living in illusion, at least until we have reached the real world that Christ-consciousness shows us, we will be well on our way to a better world, a better experience.

4 – Communicate with God

We find such joy in life when we communicate with God. In the early pages of the Text of ACIM, Jesus tells us that God is lonely when He recognizes that His channels to His children are closed, that we sleep, that we do not communicate with Him. We can change this. The handle to the door of our heart is on our side of the door. God is always ready to accept us; it is ourselves that get preoccupied with the things of this world that take us from Him.

5 – Prayer without Ceasing

Let us give up this spurious living. Let us return to frequent prayer, prayer without ceasing. Is this possible? It is possible to take God as a partner in daily life, to turn to Him as we would to any trusted ally, and to ask, internally, questions about our day with its many problems. We will get answers, so much so that we will wonder why we neglected Him for so long. Why did we not learn years ago that Christianity is eminently practical? Maybe we just have not yet recollected what has been within all along. We do know, and now is the time to bring forth that knowledge again.

6 – Talk to God

So seek to love today. We will fail if we don’t communicate with God throughout the day. Resolve now to talk, internally, to God as we walk through the day. He will be there. And we will know miracles that will warm our heart.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Help me to remember You today. May I walk through this day in close consultation with You. May I do absolutely nothing without knowing, internally, that You are in agreement with what I do. May I reach out to You, metaphorically, though I know that You are really within me. Be with me today.

Amen.

Time of Christ / Time of Holy Spirit Has Passed

images - impressionism“The way of the heart is the way of the Time of Christ.  The time of the Holy Spirit has passed.  The time of the intermediary is over.  The greatest intermediary of all has been the mind.  It has stood between you and your own inner knowing, caught in a dream of perception.  (Addendum to A Course of Love:  Learning in the Time of Christ)”

Affirmation:  “I would listen to my heart today.”  

Reflections:

1 – Final Passage to Consider Currently from ACOL‘s First Volume

This is the final passage from the first volume of A Course of Love that I will consider presently.  I see this passage as a summary passage, in that the heart is given ascendancy–a major theme of the Course of Love trilogy.  This passage does not link mind and heart together into wholeheartedness, which Jesus does elsewhere in ACOL. Here Jesus emphasizes the limitedness of the mind, which has, as we know, been the home of the ego for eons.  And the ego has not meant us well.

2 – Inner Knowing

We need to include the mind, but because the emphasis has been on the mind for so long, it is welcome now to address the heart.  We know with the heart, not just emotionally, but in practical terms that give us insight into the very nature of reality (i.e., the real world, as described in A Course in Miracles).  This is the inner knowing that the passage for today emphasizes.

3 – Perception of the Mind

The mind, on the other hand, has emphasized perception, which is always erroneous to one degree or another, for when we are perceiving, we are lost in a dream or illusion.  When we know, though, we cease to engage the mind to any great degree.

4 – Intent of ACOL Different from ACIM

The words of A Course of Love are far more abstract than anything in A Course in Miracles, because the intent is different.  The heart knows abstraction, and abstraction is the natural condition of the mind (from ACIM).  It is only when the mind has run amuck that we find that the specificity of detail gets us lost in a dream world.  We would not have it so.  We would awaken sooner rather than later.  And we await God’s timing on this.

5 – Glimpses of Awakening

In the meantime, we are apt to see glimpses of Awakening, from a few moments to a few months.  This is the revelation that is occasionally revealed to us, but for which preparation is needed (a paraphrase from the early pages of ACIM).  The means are explained in A Course in Miracles, which dislodged the ego, and then A Course of Love was channeled to allow us to come farther along the pathway to what our heart (rather than our mind) could show us.  We will not be finished until we give up constant seeking.  Jesus says in A Course of Love that we are the “accomplished.”  And, of course, he does not mean this in an egotistical way.  But the accomplished at stop seeking and rest in knowledge, calm in the certainty of a heartfelt understanding that is more than the mind can ever give.

6 – Stillness and Quiet

Let us rest in stillness and quiet.  Let us turn to Jesus as our companion, our teacher no longer.  He is ready to receive us as equals.  Would we hope for anything less?

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I rest for awhile.  The original volume of A Course of Love has been considered, and we need to take a brief break before we move to the first three Treatises.  May I have a calm mind today, supported by the comforting, abstract thinking that ACOL counsels.  May I be at peace, sure of Your love, certain of the truth of the assertions of A Course of Love.  If we are in the time of Christ, may I know what to do that is different from the time of the Holy Spirit.  Already words comes into my mind from the subconscious that seem to me to be a bit beyond me, but different from the counsel of the Holy Spirit.  Am I learning in the time of Christ?  Is this the way that it is?

We do not have firm guidance in other works for what the time of Christ really means.  ACOL counsels us, and I would do well to listen.  Help me to be relaxed and easy, to take each moment as it comes, to live in the Now.  And may I drop from thought any worry that threatens my peace.

Thank You.

Amen.