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Showing posts from December, 2009

"Creation" Revisited

Ego and ACIM Groups

I hear from students who are disappointed to go to A Course in Miracles study groups or other gatherings, live, online, or over the phone and encounter a lot of posturing, conflicting personal selves. Somehow, they expect Course groups to be different from other gatherings; they expect other students to supply the Love and Light that they feel they lack. Of course, it does not matter whether you are with Course students or non-Course students, because, in any situation, you can only get what you put into it, without exception. Your experience always comes from within you; there is no world outside of your mind. The images that you perceive (the sounds that you hear, the material forms that you touch, etc) are neutral in themselves; you decide what they mean to you.

If you want to join a group or organization, Course-related or otherwise, the question to ask yourself is, why? If it’s to supply a lack, you will be coming from your identification with a personal self. You will be looking …

Being Present to the Holy Spirit's Lesson

I’ve found that I can never predict how the Holy Spirit will teach me, and I don’t always know what things are for. For example, I’ve shared many times how I used to be very co-dependent. I thought that it was my role to rescue and fix others, so I used to give more than I felt that I had to give. I found relationships draining, and often I would withdraw from people in general because martyring myself in my relationships with them left me exhausted. For a long time I read into A Course in Miracles that I was supposed to do this and receive some mysterious reward that I never found because I was coming from the personal mind. Eventually, however, I developed a strong enough awareness of the Holy Spirit to begin giving from the Holy Spirit, which was not draining, but, in fact, gave me more than I seemed to give away. I learned ‘what I give, I receive’. When this began, I found the Holy Spirit often leading me to ‘be there for others’. It used my relationships with others to teach me h…

Doing God's Work

There’s a trap that I fell into because I do work pertaining to spirituality: The belief that somehow it is different from other work I could do in the world. I certainly knew that everyone on a spiritual path was not going to end up making their living in a way that would seem directly related to their spirituality, but I also found that I looked at my mentoring and writing as though they were different from the house-cleaning business I had for over 20 years. But I’ve learned that they are not different; they are exactly the same: an illusion.

Sometimes, my wife, Courtney, will say something about me ‘doing God’s work’ and I tell her that there is no such thing (she doesn’t accept this). Yes, God has a ‘plan’ for my salvation, but that is within me, and it extends through my awareness, but it has nothing to do with what I do in the world. I could still be cleaning houses, or do some other work entirely, and my salvation would still function in the same way. I have to forgive whatever…

Praying

Just before Thanksgiving a student asked me whether, in my family, I led the prayer over the day’s feast. I explained that we have never prayed over meals in my family. I was not raised in any religion at all (for which I am so grateful – I had an open mind with which to approach God). It always seemed sort of a pagan thing to me to thank God for the food I was about to eat. I never saw the difference between that and thanking a more earth-centered deity. Then, when I embarked on a spiritual path, I learned from A Course in Miracles that God did not make the world, so it makes no sense to me to thank God for the food I’m about to eat. Later that day I was revisiting this idea and I thought, what would I say in such a prayer? ‘Thank you, the-one-mind-that-dreams-of-separation-from-God, for the illusion of turkey’? Then I thought, no, I’d have to go much deeper: ‘Thank you, the-one-mind-that-dreams-of-separation-from-God, for the illusion that I am a personal self in a world separate fr…