Shattered Expectations


Often I have written that this path has not unfolded the way I thought it would. I had expectations based on what I read, but had not yet experienced. So they were formed through the filters of my past and what I only understood so far. Other expectations were formed in guilt and fear. And still others were based on the specific experiences of others, which were never meant to be applied to everyone.

There was a time when my study was all in my intellect and I pushed away my mystical experiences. Intellectual study led to new concepts, but brought no peace and no clarity. Only experience would bring peace and clarity. I eventually learned to let my experiences, rather than what I read in a book, lead the way. And only then did I really understand what I had read.

Thankfully, miraculously, my willingness to experience for myself overrode my expectations. And this has led to shattered expectations, but fascinating, illuminating experiences.

My recent articles rattled some of my readers. They shattered their expectations. Some had expectations of me; some had expectations of what would happen when the ego (personal thought system) fell away. Some admit they are rattled, are turning inward to Truth, and are learning from it. Some are merely redefining what is meant by “ego”, because their expectations were based on a misunderstanding of what it is. Others project guilt and fear.

Though my outer world is changing dramatically, for me it is the internal shift that requires the greater adjustment. A consciousness used to identifying with a self now has to adjust to being without that identity. It is mourning the loss of that identification while adjusting to merely observing the self. It is undoing habits of thinking. It is accepting a Higher Consciousness that has come to fill the void. The latter is not difficult on its own. It’s actually quite lovely. But it signals just how huge a shift has come, and sometimes throws this mind back into shock and grief.

It amuses me when people say I must be wrong about what has happened in my mind, and the manifestation of that shift in the self’s life, because it does not fit their expectations of what the experience would be. It’s not how they’ve interpreted what it says in a book they’ve read! Ah, well, yes, I was there myself. I know the fear that made me cling to “safe” ideas. And I know the fear that attended them being shattered. While I am amused at the arrogance of holding out one’s expectations as more valid than another’s experience, I do feel compassion for their fearfulness.

I share my experiences so that my readers know what to expect—the unexpected. How can a mind used to a certain thought system understand what will happen when it is gone and a whole new Thought System comes?

>>>>> 
A mentor is someone who walks the path ahead of you. If you want to benefit from my experience and perhaps lighten your process, email me at Liz@acimmentor.com to set up an appointment. Learn more at www.acimmentor.com.

If you have a question the answer to which you think will help others email it to me at Liz@acimmentor.com and indicate that you want it answered in the newsletter/blog.

Comments

will said…
The human story was put out for its information, examination and in some cases judgement. All Good. Now that life can fade into privacy as we get back to the task at hand.
Christine said…
It's all "the task at hand"! No hierarchy zone! Everything, every place, every-one,is included in our learning of our Awareness of Truth. Nothing is excluded or put on a separate shelf. Liz, the mystical is what Joel Goldsmirh writes about...an interpreter, or a go between is not needed. Our relatiobship with God is "closer than breathing". It's all our relationship with God/Truth...it just appears now as "other". Not yelling, Will, just adding my 2 cents...
Thanks Liz for continuing to share from your experience and also have the understanding and compassion for those of us who are still very afraid of healing. XO
will said…
We have taken the time to look at our cultural mores and how one person navigated through that maze as they went through an extraordinary spiritual change.
That person is no longer with us. She died in the transformation. There is a new person and a new life beginning. We wish them well, but that new life is none of our business.

will said…
That could be said more accurately but I will let others correct it if needed.
Anonymous said…
I apologize for my harsh comments last week Liz. I suppose was I merely baffled at how extreme change can look like at times. I wish nothing but the best for your new life with your new partner, and for your old partner Courtney as well. The spirit knows what it is doing, and shared interests are always its goals, even if we cannot see it. Thanks for always sharing your experiences and your teachings with us. Bat.
jontheartist said…
...continue to breathe and extend only peace and love. Blessings
ACIM Mentor said…
WtP, you are welcome.
ACIM Mentor said…
Anonymous Bat, apology accepted.
Barbara Hemming said…
It's all ok Liz, ALL of it. Resonate completely with experience over intellect. Love xxx
Unknown said…
"The caterpillar sheds its skin to find a butterfly within". For humans, we need to shed the ego to find our divinity. Our egoic resistance actually strengthens the "muscles" needed for this to happen, barring any past life Karma or already being a Bodhisattva. It might be a mix of comfort, pain,and fear, etc. while we are in the cocoon of the ego. Yet it is inevitable we will break free. Even those stuck for millennia will be called Home; cocoon or not. The concern is now, where all real concern happens. "Do I break free now?" Even after 100 more lifetimes, when we ask that question...it will be now. Yet...why not this now? Thanks for your service and love, Liz!
nicci said…
thank you liz. i will be open to the unexpected . . .
endless L, n
will said…
If I can put on my counselor hat.
As Liz was saying I didn’t know it was going to be like this either. But I do know we can’t keep stirring the pot about Liz. People who have used this blog, leaned on it, are in the same boat as Courtney. There is some grieving, some trying to sort things out. Some letting go. The blog is us, the people using it.
I can’t yet wrap my head around what is spiritually happening. It’s a little too much to take in at once. The Holy Spirit showed up and that’s a lot different than reading about it in a book. The ego wants to talk about right and wrong. It wants to stir the pot so there is no silence. But we can’t afford to miss what is happening. The Holy Spirit stepped in and all of a sudden, the Course is Truth. Not intellectual truth but my gut hurts Truth. We have to stay in the slipstream.
will said…
The Slipstream is mental silence. It's being the Observer. It's meditation.
Christine said…
Yes, the experiential instead of the intellectual. But the intellectual/ reading, studying, prepares one for the experiential/Holy Instant, Awareness of Truth, the "unexpected", the outlined.
will said…
Yes exactly right.
will said…
We may be, those of us following this blog, the only people who have ever had a chance to watch this unfold. Jesus wasn't JESUS from the get go, there was a transformation at some period in his life. The transformation was his ego dropping and his awareness as the Holy Spirit. That is what the Course is, the path to the transformation, the Atonement.
will said…
Chapter One in the text (aside from the 50 miracles) is extremely difficult to understand. In T-1.III.1-4 it describes the atonement in general terms. We read words like "separation" and move on. We really don't dig any deeper because we can't. But with the transformation we see going on with Liz we can begin to look deeper. There is a process going on that begins to reveal answers (and more questions) about the true nature of the atonement. The journey back to our Real state.
will said…
We all know the frustration with spirituality that comes with using the personal mind to understand. The intellect is indispensable in getting us to a place where we can begin to truly understand. And then it grinds to a halt. We are left repeating, rephrasing, imaging, speculating about what we are studying. Think of cooking a pie. You have the recipe book out and it gives detailed instructions on what to do to get a pie. But you still don't have a pie. You can taste it in your taste buds but still no pie.

ACIM dares us to step beyond the intellect. To step off into a place (atonement) where we have no bearings. It's a free fall. We hope we land safely but there is no guarantee. We are no longer in control of the path; or the outcomes. If someone goes through the process of the atonement where it can be seen it is a tremendous advantage. It really is a miracle.
will said…
The stepping off point is incredibly frustrating. The intellect will not be abandoned and puts up a fight that we can't win. We are caught in a circle of using the intellect to leave the intellect. The stepping off point is joining hands with the Holy Spirit. That is the only way off the merry-go-round. We really do have to let go and let it be done for us. But we have no clue how to do this. All we have is our history which is no help at all. So there begins years of floundering, baby steps. We are not aware of it but every effort increases the speed of our transformation.
will said…
Hopefully our school years teach us how to learn as well as what to learn. We have devised a method of attaining information, teaching it and retaining it. It is something the human mind has made. This method is ingrained in us. It is part of who we are as humans. When we begin studying the text we put our learning skills to work and quickly run into trouble. Being good learners we redouble our efforts and redouble our frustration. This is the dropping off point for many students. Some return others don't. By a stroke of luck I was able to see in a matter of minutes this was not a book written by a human. It was so obvious it kind of smacked me in the face. That didn't help in understanding it but I always had that to fall back on. Like everyone else I found the text was virtually impossible to understand. I was forced to reading at a crawl. Reading each sentence a word at a time then rereading the sentence two or three times. But I was struck with this very strange amnesia where each time I reread a sentence I couldn't retain it.

Years later I was able to see the value in this experience. We cannot learn or live spirituality while the mind is running 100 mph. The mind has to be reined in to a speed that it can hear the Holy Spirit. Learning how to read the text gives us that training.
will said…
For years while reading this blog I would hear about the various spiritual experiences people were having. Some quite dramatic. To me it always seemed that everyone had a connection to the Holy Spirit that I didn't. Has it seemed that way to you? I had hoped I would be one of the exceptions where all kinds of spiritual things would be happening to at least verify I was making progress, or something. If something happened I would be excited but after a day or so I wasn't even sure if it had happened at all. A pretty common experience. Years into this I began to sense, I guess I can say actually feel the Holy Spirit inside me. It is a physical presence. Sometimes it is strong like this evening, other times not so much. Sitting here typing I wanted to try to explain the physical presence. The most important thing I can think of is how important it is to believe. Believe it is happening. Believe you have had an experience not matter how small. Believe Jesus is talking to you. This Belief will grow into a constant presence over time.
hannah said…
will, thats been one of the trickiest things for me to accept.. the intellect can only accompany me *as the seeming director with a great deal of purpose* so far, then it becomes obsolete. the 'ME' that is 'the problem solver, the thinker' has no role beyond a certain point but to let go. and at this point it starts to become clear (be experienced) that it never DID a damn thing, it was never autonomous.. what!? disorientation, grief!! liberation, peace!! oh the spaciousness behind that 'purposeful, meaningful' thinker. oh, thank god, I need do nothing, wholeness never stopped being whole!
hannah said…
god, and i guess even the thinker isnt what lets go, she thinks ;) :D
will said…
I'm afraid saying the intellect never did a thing might drive some students over the deep end. The Course seems to very gently guide our understanding of its place. It's limitations and it's importance in the process.
will said…
Your picture reminds me of the rural farm lands of the state of Missouri. I have great nostalgia from when I lived there.
hannah said…
yes, point taken. i always enjoyed the way ken said 'a dream is a dream is a dream..' nothing *actually* happens in there, but within the dream our intellect (seems to) do a WHOLE lot, bless it ;) i enjoy my intellect, it seems to be leading me to clear waters! plus.. without it i wouldnt enjoy a good joke :D
hannah said…
picture taken across the paddocks over the road.. probably some 'roos about somewhere ;)
laurie said…
Hannah,

Can you explain more concisely what you mean by 'the intellect never did a damn thing. It was never autonomous'. Especially the never autonomous part....
will said…
When I talk about the intellect grids to a halt that is only in reference to my spiritual life with the Course. Moving from intellect to Truth the intellect has to take a back seat in what was its role with a student.
hannah said…
Laurie,

im in such a process with this idea right now. the 'never did a damn thing' part was partly pique following from experiences a few weeks back that showed me that 'i and my intellect' were never autonomous. i mean, (at least as i see it now) its true, but when looking at 'non autonomy' from the ego its 'it never did a damn thing, this self is meaningless, whats the point' but looking at it from HS its 'YAY!! it never did a thing! it was all pointless and it didnt matter what i believed, thought or did. Love and Wholeness are eternally So, and THAT is all thats Real of me!'.

um.. how to try and be clear!? i feel like im struggling to express things clearly lately. i guess cos i got two 'realities' going on in here!

but i guess the intellect/autonomy thing (as i see it) is really about level confusion, cause and effect. for me, the intellect has been right at the core of my identity.. "i think therefore i am". my thinking is important because it has real effects. my understanding will get me from a to b. so the intellect, 'who/what i am', and all the feelings that flow from where my intellect takes me, are causal, prove im real and am effective in the world. and of course on one level thats 'true'.. in the world/self the things i do or dont understand have effects which change as my intellect experiences, learns and understands new things. and without that set up, without contrasting experiences and thought, we'd all just accept and stay in a dream of pain as reality. and.. never learn to .. oh.. grow a healthier garden or cook yummier cakes etc :D BUT! i had an experience the other week where i KNEW 'myself' (the thinker, the perceiver, that which has an intellect) as merely a dream figure, an imaginary effect of a cause, of mind. im just an effect! i dont make things happen or not. that 'i' is not real. and then i guess i understand on an intellectual level that only what is Real is Causal, and all it causes is Itself. anything involving perception is outside of Reality, as there is one and another, an observer and an observed. intellect by its nature is part of that, a thinker and the thought about. so even what i experienced, the mind that caused the effect of seemingly autonomous thinker hannah, even THAT cannot be an actual Cause. so me and my intellect are just.. ideas within ideas within ideas and have nothing to do with autonomy, let alone with actual Cause. sometimes the Love and glorious liberation flowing from that realisation are just sublime. but when im in the self its .. a mixture of relief and grief.

feel free to correct and/or add anything liz'beth :)
hannah said…

Laurie.. this section will maybe shed more light on your question than my response: 'chapter 3 -5 beyond perception'.
ACIM Mentor said…
Hannah, Liz'beth has sent you an email.

Popular posts from this blog

You Don't Have to Go It Alone

Detachment

Truth Rising to Conscious Awareness