Tag Archives: way of the heart

Suffering

“One of the more horrible examples of inverted or upside-down thinking (and history is full of horrible examples of this) was the Nazis’ ‘Final Solution.’ I shed many tears over this, but it is by no means the only time I said, ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-1.43.8:1-2)

In this passage from the complete edition of A Course in Miracles, Jesus tells us personally what type of reaction he has had and continues to have over the terrible deeds of humankind and the suffering these deeds have wrought for ordinary people. He specifically refers to unspeakable crimes against Jewish people during World War II. Jesus responds with an appeal to the Father, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.”

His reaction is to be our own when we consider awful occurrences of human against human in this world. Jesus says that he has repeated his prayer with many incidents. We must do the same.

In this world, we cannot ever understand the “why” of suffering that innocent human beings undergo. Pat Rodegast’s Emmanuel says this. Perhaps an incomplete answer would be that it is enough for us to recognize in our own suffering that, when it is passed, we comprehend more; we may never understand, but we can realize that through it all, God was with us, and we have grown. I do not mean to say that the end justifies the means. We simply can’t with our little minds wrap around the awful things that people go through. It is a mystery.

But God does not “cause” our suffering. And it is never right, Jesus tells us in A Course of Love, to blame the victim. Jesus indicates that we are to have compassion, not heartlessness. Love is the healer of suffering, the end in sight. Jesus indicates this also elsewhere in A Course of Love. In “The Way of the Heart” (from The Way of Mastery), Jesus even affirms, “There is no suffering.” Of course we can’t know fully what he means.

If we believe that God is living through us, then He is experiencing right along with us. His Presence makes all the difference when we are confronted with eternal questions that seem to have no answer. Especially when that eternal question is the “why” of suffering.

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.

Be Very Careful What You Set Your Heart Upon

images - impressionism

“I ask you merely to receive in order to learn receptivity, the way of the heart.  I ask you only to pause, to give the mind a rest, to enter a realm foreign to the mind and yet beloved to the heart.. . .I ask you to give yourself a chance to forget about approaching this as one more self-improvement exercise, or one more objective to accomplish.  Only in this way do you come to realize that you are already accomplished.  (Addendum to A Course of Love:  Learning in the Time of Christ)”

Affirmation:  “I would give my mind a rest today.”

Reflections:

1 – Already Accomplished

What does it mean to be the “already accomplished”?  It is an ego-less state, that is for sure.  Feeling the truth of this joyous statement does not mean that the ego has one more kudo to chew upon.  On the contrary.  It means that we reside in a receptive mode, the one of the heart, that allows things to come to us.  We don’t go out, aggressively, to self-improve.  Such self-improvement campaigns usually end in disappointment, and during their time in the sun, they are frequently a tribute to our egotism.

2 – Passivity

How do we become more receptive?  This involves a certain passivity, because to be receptive means that one is not out there trying to bring home the world’s jewels for ourselves.  We would be disappointed if we tried.  That is why the law of attraction does not always work well in the long haul.  The stories that we are told never tell us the times that the law failed to bring joy.  But fail it will, if we seek the goods of this world without the blessings of another world.  If we seek pleasure, without the joy of God.

3 – Source of Attraction

We do ourselves a disservice when we seek to attract without acknowledging the Source of our attraction.  And we often ask amiss, and though we bring that hoped-for thing to our doorstep, we will not remain happy about it.  Something will come that trips us up, if we have not surrendered to God and His will for us.  We are told in A Course in Miracles that God’s will and our real will are actually identical.  But it takes much prayer and much guidance to ask aright for the things in our world that would really be of benefit to us.  There is a strong warning, “Be very careful what you set your heart upon, for you will surely have it.”  Yes, we will have it because of the law of attraction, but we need guidance in setting our hearts upon the right choice to ask.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I seek a rest today.  I want to attract to myself only what is good and right for me.  Help me to do so.  And may You protect me from myself if I need that.

Help me to understand more fully the law of attraction.  It is puzzling that I think that You will protect me if I ask amiss, and then I wonder if indeed You will.  This is a lack of faith, and I would faith in You as a central facet of my life.

Be with me as I seek to turn over to You, that I do turn over to You, the things that trouble me.  You know best how to resolve everything for the good of all.

And I ask that today.

Amen.

A Receptive Heart

Style___impressionism_3_by_monguz“You are coming home to the way of the heart.  What you gain by sharing with others is a situation in which you ‘learn’ in unity through the receptivity of the heart.  (Addendum to A Course of Love:  Learning in the Time of Christ)”

Affirmation:  “May I share with others today.”

Reflections:

1 – Heart

May my heart be receptive today.  May I share with others, to the extent that You would wish.  May I share accurately, and may my heart dictate the words that I write.  Only when the heart is engaged do we really come to realize that we are really alright the way that we are, that all is well with us, and that we can correct the faults of our personality simply by willing these faults to disappear.

2 – Unity

All of us are One.  This is what “unity” means.  And we are one not only with our brothers and sisters, but with God and His helpers, and with ourselves, our deepest Self.  May this assurance bring us comfort today.  May we realize that the oneness of our being means that we are never alone, and therefore we do not have to fear isolation.  We are not meant to be isolated, however introverted we may be.  Everyone needs some companionship, and it is in the assurance that we are One that we know that we are not alone.

3 – Observe

May our hearts be receptive today.  When our hearts are open, we can observe (the replacement for learning) in a way that we cannot otherwise.  May today be a good day, a receptive day, that lends us credence for a safe world in which all of us abide under God’s care.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Thank You for the intuitive indications You have given me today.  They provide much solace, much comfort.  May I not depend on intuition to live my life totally, but may I know that the solution is always with the problem, and so the answer is there for me to find–immediately.

When I listen to my heart, I am the better off for it.  May I encourage others to have a good day, listening also to their hearts.

Amen.