Thursday, February 28, 2013

Course Note #180:How to Change

This is how a human being can change:

there’s a worm addicted to eating
grape leaves.
                      Suddenly, he wakes up,
call it grace, whatever, something
wakes him, and he’s no longer
a worm.
                He’s the entire vineyard,
and the orchard too, the fruit, the trunks,
a growing wisdom and joy
that doesn’t need
to devour.    

                                  ~ Rumi

            It was years ago that I first read this poem and I loved it then.  Recently, I came across it again and it spoke to me in a whole new way.  On Monday 2/25/13 I felt to sit with it and meditate on its truth, and this came through:

The Self that I am is Expansive

Rumi reveals that we humans need not focus on how to change,
        but instead,
shift attention from addicted body to Abundant Self.
          That is what you are
                   And, it is found in now.

                           The true Self knows not of greed
                                  for it exists only as Wisdom and Joy.

~ Feast on Self~

                                      ~ Valentine

On Wednesday 2/27/13 this:

The most profound change comes not through trying to effect change,
    but through Remembrance.

I am waking up to the Remembrance that I am not a worm,
          and never was a worm.

I am one with All That Is.
      In this Remembrance

I am full – full to over
                                                                                ~ Valentine
 Tree of Abundance ~ Carol Cavalaris

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Course Note #179: A Period of Relinquishment

Recently I had an email conversation with a friend, and I told her how much I admire and respect all the deep inner work she has done in her life. She replied, “It’s called ‘motivation born of desperation’.  The pain of staying the same was greater than the pain of changing.”

             As I read her email I was reminded that A Course in Miracles says something similar: “Tolerance for pain may be high, but it is not without limit. Eventually everyone begins to recognize, however dimly, that there must be a better way.  As this recognition becomes more firmly established, it becomes a turning-point.”  (T-2.III.5)

“The pain of changing…” as I pondered this, I was once again prompted to the “Development of Trust” section in the Course, and specifically to the third stage of development which is called: “a period of relinquishment.”  (M-4.I)

            If you feel that your life is in upheaval, as in things seem to be rapidly changing, or if you’re feeling dazed, crazed and confused turn to this section, chances are you will discover that you just may be going through a stage in the development of trust.

In retrospect I see that that I entered into this relinquishment period around February, 2007, but it wasn’t until August of that year that I first recognized that I was in this period of inner growth.  For me, this period began as letting go of certain lifestyle habits, some have been easy to let go of and others have not.  Well, let me take that back, none of them have been easy to give up! I guess it seems so in light of the ones I still don’t want to give up! Throughout the years I have seen my Inner Teacher use my behavioral habits to teach me about my habitual thoughts. 

It’s not just about habits in form, because most of us have the habit of listening to ego, the voice of the small, limited self.  Changing habits of thought precipitates changing habits in form.  Most spiritual literature speaks of laying self aside to leave more room for awareness of the Divine.  I now see how clinging to old habits keeps me in bondage to this small self. 

            The Course says that this period of relinquishment will “engender enormous conflict”, and I have found this to be so true.  For the past year and a half I have I recognized great resistance within myself, although I wasn’t even sure what it was I was resisting. Now, it’s becoming clear. 

I’ve come to see ego as the resistance to healing.  This resistance has a voice in my mind that I call the Toxic Chatty Cathy.  She chatters incessantly about everything I see, say or do.  It has been a rude awakening to discover that her voice is the very same voice that I think of as “my” thoughts.  Egad!

            Frequently over the past year and a half I have written and spoken about how my Inner Teacher has continually led me back to NTI Luke.  Recently I understood why – it’s all about how to get through this period of relinquishment!  It never ceases to amaze me how the Spirit Within guides us truly.
           “Here is what you fear: You fear the loss of self.  But loss of self cannot be, because your true Self was given you by God as a gift.  This gift shall never be taken away.
            “So what is that you fear really? You fear the loss of an illusory self, because you have forgotten who you are.  You think that to lose who you think you are is to lose who you really are, but as I have already told you, nothing could be further from the truth." (NTI Luke 23)

Wow, there it is in a nutshell!  This period of relinquishment that, by the way, we all most go through at some point, does indeed engender enormous conflict and resistance because on some level, it feels as though I’m being asked to give up something valuable and desirable to me – Me! 

I’ve been in this period for six years now, and I’m wondering how long it goes on.  Nevertheless, it has been, and continues to be a period of deep inner growth – painful and glorious all at the same time. 

I’m told in the Course that I have this to look forward to: As my willingness increases to give up the valueless (my thoughts and beliefs about me, myself and I), I will find that where I anticipated grief, I will find a happy lightheartedness instead; where I thought something was being asked of me, I will find a gift bestowed upon me.

During the session where I spoke about this, I was asked, “But Sheryl, the world will love me if I am perfect…how can I give that up?”

            Thinking that we have to be perfect to be loved is self-judgment, and this cannot coexist with acceptance.  This period of relinquishment also involves relinquishing self-judgment, and having the willingness to give up what “the world” wants us to be.  What the world wants us to be is the antithesis of who we are.    Whenever we feel that we must somehow be better or different, in that moment we are not accepting who we truly are, but are instead hanging out with the false and illusory self.

The self we think we are usurps the Self that we really are.

            When it comes to “the world”, let’s face it, there’s a voice seemingly “out there” to criticize you no matter what you do!  The world will always tell you that you are not enough, that you’ve got to be bigger, you’ve got to be Better, you’ve got to be the BEST!

The Spirit Within whispers, Be still.  In the stillness, I glimpse the perfection of who I really am.  In my willingness to glimpse the perfection of who I really am, I can then begin, little by little, to relinquish the hold on who I am not.

            “This is a time of forgiving your own thoughts by laying them aside and again opening your heart to Me.” (NTI Luke 11:1-13)

In this moment I am willing to forgive the thought that I have to be perfect to be loved.  I do not have to be perfect to be loved, and neither do the people who I don’t love because they aren’t perfect.

            When I find myself falling into thoughts of unworthiness, guilt and self-judgment, Luke tells me to, “Calmly forgive this confused and fearful voice. 

‘Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.’

            “Look beyond this voice to the beauty that lies within.  Listen in rest for the Voice that does not crucify and knows no crucifixion.  This is your true Voice, the gift of Heaven that cannot be taken away.”   (NTI Luke 23:26-43)

                This interpretation of that famous sentence “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” is so powerful!  The thoughts of unworthiness, guilt and self-judgment do indeed crucify us. 

            I’m reminded of a passage in the Course, “The crucified give pain because they are in pain.  But the redeemed give joy because they have been healed of pain.  Everyone gives as he receives, but he must choose what it will be that he receives.”  

The pain of changing is rooted in wanting to hold onto the small, limited “not good enough” self.  I wonder why we fear the loss of it? 

I now see how our habits, addictions and compulsive behaviors can be used as tools to heal the mind.  This period of relinquishment is really about giving up the compulsive behavior of listening to the ego – the voice that crucifies.  And as I increase my willingness to let go of that habit, all else will fall into place.
And so as we go about our lives this week, let’s be willing to form a new habit:

Listen to the Voice that does not crucify.


I originally wrote this in September of 2010
Here's a talk on it: 

On 8/24/10, I gave a talk on this topic. It is 1 hour and 27 min.
A Period of Relinquishment

MP3 File

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Course Note #178: Body as Scapegoat

Hi Friends,
           In my job as a doctor of chiropractic, obviously I have frequent discussions with people about, guess what? Bodies! I am ever grateful for these opportunities to speak with people on a deeper more intimate level than in normal discourse as it has facilitated a greater understanding of all the issues we humans have with our bodies.

             Let’s take a look at the myriad of ways we focus on the body: Health, illness, obsessions about looking good, or about not looking good enough, aging, gender, skin color, sexuality, handicaps – clothing it, housing it, feeding it…the list goes on and on and on. 

           We identify with the body as being who we are.  In A Course in Miracles we are told that the ego (the false self) holds the body dear because it dwells in it, and yet it also hates the body, because it cannot accept it as good enough to be it’s home. 

            We can readily see how this is true.   If you feel that you can only be happy if your body looks or feels a certain way, then you are looking at it with the ego and you will most likely come to hate it.  But, when we learn to look at the body through the vision of Spirit Within, it becomes a learning device for the healing of our mind.

              In the past year or two, I have been looking deeper within at guilt and unworthiness.  Just as I recently wrote about how we can avoid looking at guilt through blaming others, in the same way, we can avoid looking at feelings of unworthiness when we project them onto the body as the source of these feelings.  Thus the body becomes a scapegoat for unworthiness, guilt, fear and judgment.

          Essentially, the plan for freedom is to seek healing where it is, within our mind.  The ego seeks to keep us out of our mind, and its primary way of doing this is with a focus on the body.  The body is the ego’s idol and such a great distraction!

            We fear looking within because we think we’re going to see a big snake pit.  Not so.  When we look within with the Light guiding us, we find that we are Light.  In the Course I am told that it is my task to seek and find within myself all the obstacles to the awareness of the Love that I am.   We must look within for the obstacles, not outside of us.

         I came across a message on Regina Dawn Akers website that was given to her from Holy Spirit called: “You like having the body to blame”.  This message so spoke to me in regard to what my Inner Teacher has been teaching me about looking at the feelings within.  Much of the message contains ideas that I already understand and have experienced, but where I felt spoken to directly was here:

            “I ask you to be willing to look at this belief in your unworthiness without the anesthesia of projecting it onto a body.  When you cannot blame the body (or other circumstances in your life), the pain of the unworthiness may go deeper than you know.  Be willing to feel this pain in order to learn it is not real.  It is only an experience of emotion, but behind the experience of emotion is a light that reminds you it isn’t true.  Invite the pain into your presence.  You do not want to avoid it any more.”

            As I read the part about inviting the pain into my presence, I felt a little fear about it, even though I also felt very ready and willing to look at it. As I had this thought of fear, immediately I was reminded of a passage from NTI Luke 8 that says (my emphasis):

            “Let all things serve the purpose of healing.  Do not avoid healing because you do not want to look at the pain of unworthiness and guilt.  We must look at it together if you are to be healed.  Do not be afraid.  I am with you, even now.  Stay with the process.” 

            Admittedly, a few times since then I found myself thinking, “I wonder how the pain is going to come up?  I wonder when it’s going to come up? I wonder what it’s going to look like? I hope it’s not a big drag!”  Each time those thoughts came up, I responded with willingness and trust that I am being healed now, I am not afraid, the light is with me now.  We invite the pain of unworthiness up, simply, so that we can see it and let it go. 

            So if you’re reading this today you too want to go deeper.  We might consciously think that we want to finally lose that weight, or get healthy or whatever, but underlying that wish is an unconscious desire to stay the way we are because, feeling not good enough because of our body keeps us from ever healing those feelings that lurk in our mind.
            So instead of focusing on what bodily thing you’d like to change, ask yourself, “What do I really want?” 

to know my Self as Love created it
unlimited and Free

            When I keep this purpose in the forefront of my mind, then I am united with the Love that I am, and thus my body can be used to simply extend Divine Love.  The truth is that God cannot love you through me, if I hate me.  And God cannot love me through you, if you hate you. 

            The body as used by the ego becomes an instrument of separation; when used by Spirit Within, it becomes an instrument for communion.  Let’s not judge ourselves for how we have used our bodies lovelessly, instead, let us be willing to do the inner work so that our bodies may be used by Love. 

            As you go about your life this week, be willing to look at the ways you may be using your body as a scapegoat for unworthiness, guilt and self-judgment.  And then be willing to ask Love to look at your body with you that it may be used for its real purpose – extending the Love that You Are.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Course Note #177: Carb Addiction & self-judgment

Hi Friends,
This was blog was originally written and posted on 6/22/10.  I was inspired to look at again today and to share it here. Enjoy!

             When it comes to compulsive overeating, it seems the prevailing opinion is that people who overeat do so because they are miserable, lonely, stuffing feelings, etc.  Just the other day I read a quote from an author on this subject: When asked why women overeat? She replied, “Because we’re miserable.”
            Many women I talk to, myself included, cannot relate to this as being the sole reason for overeating.  After twenty-five years of talking to people through my chiropractic practice and spiritual counseling, I’ve discovered that “miserable” comes in all shapes and sizes and, so does happiness. 

For me anyway, it’s been a breakthrough to discover that when it comes to compulsive overeating, it is about the food and, it’s not about the food.
First, I’ll elaborate on why it is about the food.  I had a conversation with someone last week about diet programs.  When I shared with her that I was feeling not to eat certain foods, she told me that I shouldn’t deprive myself and that I just needed to learn to eat everything in smaller portions.
            Now, for the average eater, portion control is most likely the way to go; however, can you imagine saying to a cocaine addict, “You need to learn how to portion control that cocaine if you want to get over it.”  Ludicrous, right?  

And then we’re told to eat the “lite” versions of our favorite foods, as if that’s going to cure the habit.  When I was a smoker, smoking the light version of my favorite cigarette did not lead to knocking out the habit. 
As I pondered on the conversation about deprivation, I realized that now that I have quit the smoking habit, I never feel that I’m being deprived of cigarettes.  This stimulated ideas on looking at deprivation from another perspective. 
            So I began to ask myself, “Am I depriving myself of pizza, pasta, tacos or ice cream? Or, am I really depriving myself of feeling light and experiencing freedom?
And then on a worldly note, recently I entered a store filled with the most beautiful clothes.  While there I thought again about deprivation.  I recognized that by indulging in the foods that keep me addicted, I am also depriving myself of wearing the beautiful clothes that I want to wear. 
The question becomes, “What am I really depriving myself of?”

            I had a light bulb moment when I learned more about food addiction, and realized that the foods that I love to overeat are in fact, addictive.  This food addiction arena is so confusing because, we all know that with substances like alcohol or drugs, we can stop the behavior, but with food, we have to eat. I’ve been observing that the foods that are addictive are not even “real” food. 
I’ve begun to notice how I feel when eating raw fruit and vegetables compared to how I feel when I overindulge in addictive foods.  I’ve also begun to notice that most of the foods I eat addictively, I don’t even like all that much! What a rude awakening that is! Ha! 
            Just this morning I went to a store that had samples of food.  Usually I don’t eat those samples, but this morning there were samples of my drugs of choice: tortilla, cheese and guacamole!  Within moments of eating what was literally two bites, the addicted feast beast within started chattering: “I want more of that!” 

I thought about how prior to eating those two bites, I had not been thinking about food at all, but once I indulged in my hit of cocaine, I wanted more. As I drove home from the store, I literally had to talk myself out of stopping to buy more of that sort of food. 
            One of my patients talked about the same thing recently.  The day after eating three bites of one of her children’s dessert, she said to her husband that she should not have eaten it.  He asked her why as he pointed out that three bites are not going to make her gain weight.  She replied that it wasn’t about gaining weight, but that now she’s craving sugar.   

Many of us were brought up on sugar-coated cereals, macaroni and cheese, sandwiches, and the like.  Imagine if you were brought up on drugs and alcohol, and then as an adult you’re told that you are addicted to these substances because you are lonely and miserable. 
One time I actually stayed on a low-carbohydrate diet for a month and to my amazement, I had no desire to eat at night, or to overeat at all.  That’s when I recognized that compulsive overeating has a lot to do with blood sugar imbalances. My eating habits entirely changed until I once again attempted to portion control my drugs of choice.    

So in many respects, I’ve discovered that it is about the food. And, it’s not about the food. Let’s talk about how it’s not about the food. 
Recently I spoke with several women who have struggled for a life-time with these issues.  They too could not relate to all the voices telling us that we are eating because we’re miserable and unhappy.  Certainly as a consequence of overeating, one may begin to feel guilt, shame, weak or not good enough.  But what came first? It becomes a vicious cycle.
            So as I’ve said, food is most definitely a factor, yet on the other hand, there is still something going on within that propels us to return to our drugs of choice.  When I finally gave up smoking it was only because there was something I wanted more, freedom from that habit.

Healing food addiction must take place on two levels:  On the level of form, which is the choice to not indulge in certain behaviors or substances; and the spiritual level, which is asking Spirit Within to reveal what needs healing in me.  I have been working with these approaches and it seems that I come to ever increasing understanding of myself and why I do the things I do.  

            In general I live a rich and full life.  I love my life and, I love tasty food and wine, so I guess if I’m going to have an issue, it could have been a lot worse! Ha!  Nevertheless, I have felt frustrated and confused due to really wanting to change this pattern of overeating, and not being able to do so.  

            The other day I was driving to work and listening to an audio on NTI Luke that was about judgment and willingness.  As I listened, it was if Spirit whispered in my ear, “Sheryl, give those judgments about yourself to Me.  Give your willingness to lay your self-judgments aside.”  
I stopped the cd, and took a moment to do just that.
Holy Spirit,
 I am willing to give these
judgments about myself
to You.
In gratitude, I rest in your

I felt release in that moment.  Then I popped the cd back in and heard Love respond:
I bless you with My gratitude each time you give Me
 but the smallest measure of your willingness,
 for each small measure is like fertilizer;
it is useful to Me in the healing of your heart.
                                                                                                             (NTI Luke 13:1-9 v18)

            I felt in that moment and feel again now, the Presence of Love in my mind and I feel such gratitude for this healing taking place in my heart.  Have you made judgments about yourself today?  Stop, and give a little willingness to lay them aside. 

There’s a passage in A Course in Miracles that has really spoken to me of late: “Remember, then, that whenever you look without and react unfavorably to what you see, you have judged yourself unworthy…” 
            Self-judgments are spoken from the voice of unworthiness masquerading as you!  When focused on changing things out there, we’re really only focused on our thoughts.  The Good News is that we can change our thoughts! 
            In that same section of NTI Luke we are told:
“It is your thoughts that have made you suffer. And so, if you would choose freedom, you must also choose freedom from your thoughts.
            “This is why I have come. I am here to teach you to lay down your thoughts, to loosen yourself from your bindings, and to straighten up and walk in joy and gratitude instead.”

There is a sense of freedom in seeing that our suffering comes from our thoughts about our circumstances or conditions; but we may then move into wondering why the “problem” still seems to be staring us in the face.  The “problem” will remain as long as we continue to think about it in the same way.  Tomorrow will look like yesterday when we continue to think the same thoughts.

Healing occurs in the present moment. In this moment:

Willingness and resistance cannot coexist.
Acceptance and self-judgment cannot coexist.
Self-love and self-hatred cannot coexist.
Love and fear cannot coexist.
Awareness and compulsion cannot coexist.
I cannot be awake and asleep at the same time.

            In this present moment I can bring awareness to what is occupying my thoughts.
In the moment that I am willing to give my thoughts to the Source of Healing, in that moment I rest in willingness, acceptance, love and awareness.  Now is the time for healing.  The antidote to unworthiness, guilt and fear is, Now

The audio was recorded on 6/22/10 and is 1 hr and 28 min.  It contains much more information on this topic.

Releasing self-judgment
MP3 File

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Course Note #176: Abide in Me

We’ve all tried to change a habit through self-denial and self-discipline only to find ourselves more frustrated than ever as the habit hangs on.  Even when our efforts appear to have worked in the sense that outwardly we are no longer engaging in that habit, it may still be alive and well in the mind. 
            For instance, we might decide that we will not make any more negative judgements about people, and we don't outwardly, but the toxic Chatty Cathy in the mind is still chattering away.  And what about diets: Some people can discipline themselves to the extent that outwardly their excess weight drops away, but they are tortured every time there’s food around.  Or they may be constantly tortured by not liking how they look.
            I don’t know about you, but the more I focus on changing some outward appearance and keeping my focus on externals (thoughts, body, world, money, relationships…), the more distracted I am from what really matters.  When we keep our focus and attention only on outward appearances, we move further away from where true change occurs – within. 

            The way to really conquer ourselves – the false imposter self – is to stop focusing on that self.  When we consistently begin to shift attention from ‘out there’ to within, we find that we can experience happiness and peace without needing outer things to change.

  Although I have heard and read the words “abide in me as I abide in you” many times over the years, on a recent evening I felt Spirit Within take me into the experience of true Self-abidance.  Together we joined deeply:

Abide in Me as I abide in You
Dwell in Me as I dwell in You
Unite  with Me as I unite with You

Live in Me as I live in You
Rest in Me as I rest in You

Remain in Me as I remain in You

I particularly like “remain…” as it reminds me that I have never left God-Self-Truth.  After this meditation with Spirit I was prompted to read John 15 in the Bible, which reminded me that the branch that abides to the vine bears much fruit; a branch cut from the vine withers and dies.

               This year feels to me to be about going deeper into surrender and Self-abidance, which is really the same thing.  Abidance in the present moment is surrender – surrender of the small limited self – surrender of the ego’s voice.

            As long as we seek to find a sense of security, meaning and hope in the world-body-person, all efforts will be futile.  Let all effort be devoted to that which is effective and fruitful.  As we quiet the mind and abide within, we are constantly guided as to what to say, what to do, where to go…  Abide as often as you remember in the silent-truth that You are.  Let this simple quiet rest in now be your preparation for everything. 

Abide in me as I abide in you
     Dwell in me as I dwell in you
          Live in me as I live in you
               Join with me as I join with you
                     Rest in me as I rest in you
                          Make your home in me as I make my home in you
                                Remain in me as I remain in you
                                          Abide in me as I abide in you

In this way, your efforts are effective and fruitful.  Abide as often as you remember in the silent truth that You are and I am.

Thank you Spirit Within-true Self
for showing me how to abide in the one truth,
the one Self
that we all share.


The Audio was recorded on Sunday 2/17/13 and is 55 min.
Much more is shared on this, including the pratice of abide in me.


    MP3 File

Monday, February 18, 2013

Course Note #175: Where do you Live?

We speak
Becomes the house we live in.

Who will want to sleep in your bed
If the roof leaks
Right above

Look what happens when the tongue
Cannot say to kindness,
“I will be your slave.”

The moon
Covers her face with both hands

And can’t bear
To look.
                                            Hafiz ~ Ladinsky

What we speak comes from what we think.
And what we think,
We see and experience.

Does the house you live in
Sit on
Shaking sands
of  illusion?


Does the house you live in
on a solid foundation of

Is your forehead wet?

Abide in Me-Self-Truth
And all that springs
From That

The moon smiles
into the

And you know


                                       ~ Valentine

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Course Note #174: Love's Dance Floor

If God
Invited you to a party
And said,

In the ballroom tonight
Will be my special

How would you then treat them
When you

Indeed, indeed!

Let us know now –
There is no one in this world

Is not upon
Love’s Jeweled Dance

                                                                                                                Hafiz ~ Ladinsky ~ Valentine

Through our willingness to serve in love, we are transformed.  We return to the remembrance of our perfection as Love perfects us through service to our fellow humans.  I’ve discovered that Love changes us while we are being used. We don’t have to wait to get it all together; all we have to do is be willing to let Love set us free. 

            Love sets us free to look upon one another beyond classifications of religion, race, sexuality or gender.  Love sets us free of seeing one another through the lens of fear and hate. And Love works in and through us in service to one another.

If you feel that you have not been given enough love, decide today to be a giver of Love. It sounds simple to decide to be a loving person, but of course, we know that it is not.  You don’t have to love everyone today; instead, each day; decide to love one more human being.  Hold a door open for someone, smile at another, a “thank you” to someone else.  Love need not be complicated.

The ultimate goal of humanity is to love one another.  Your consistent willingness to choose love is the pinnacle of spiritual maturity.  It’s the mountaintop; it’s what you are here to learn.  You won’t learn to love over night, you’re not supposed to.  Learning to love is the task of a lifetime.

God is not looking for perfect people to do Love’s work.  If so, let’s face it, there would be a very small work force. Each one of us is needed.  Love can only be extended on this earth through people who become willing to extend it.  Take this idea seriously and you will come to know that Love is power.  Love will set you free.

And so as you go about your life this week, recognize that the time to love is now.  If not you, who?  If not now, when?  Each day become willing to ask and heed the question, “How can I love today?” 

Love will begin to permeate and embrace your life.  Practice love on purpose as if your life depended on it – it does. 

Happy Valentine's day!

Much Love to you! 

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Course Note #173: Abide where you are, differently

“The Way of Transformation absolutely requires that you be committed to living differently.  For is not transformation a change from the status quo?  How can you experience transformation if you do not use time to think and be differently?  One thing and one thing only will bring you into the transformation that you have sought – the willingness to abide where you are, differently.
                                                                                  ~ The Way of Mastery

This morning I was reminded of this truth: You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free. I remembered that this is from the Bible and so I looked it up. I noticed that the verse above it (John 8:31), reveals just how to experience the truth that I am: 

Abide in Love-Truth-Self.

Allow yourself to be guided
 from Within.

Stick with it,
and then…
you will know the Truth,
and the Truth will set you free
of all perceived limitations.

            It’s not hearing or reading about truth that will set me free, but knowing the Truth. We come to know the Truth through practice.  I am experiencing freedom in various aspects of my life, but it’s probably fair to say that most of us have some area where we continue to feel imprisoned. 
            In fact, A Course in Miracles says that there is no one who does not feel imprisoned in some way.  The key word here is “feel” because a child of God cannot be imprisoned; I can only think that I am.

            The thought system of this world is the antithesis of truth.  The voices in and around us tell us that we’re not enough, that we must be bigger, better, best.  Yet, beyond the cacophony Holy Spirit-Love whispers:
Be still.
Abide in Me.

            We live in a prison that we’ve placed ourselves in. This prison has no doors or walls; it is constructed entirely of our thoughts.  The Great News is that we can learn to not listen to our thoughts.  We can choose again.

             “It is your thoughts that have made you suffer. And so, if you would choose freedom, you must also choose freedom from your thoughts.  This is why I have come. I am here to teach you to lay down your thoughts, to loosen yourself from your bindings, and to straighten up and walk in joy and gratitude instead.”  (NTI Luke 13 vs 10-17)

~ Be Willing to Abide where You are, differently ~

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Course Note #172: Love is the Cure...

There appears to be so much turmoil and strife in the world – what can we do about it? 

Well, Rumi says ~

Love is the cure,
for your pain
will keep giving birth to more pain
your eyes constantly exhale Love
as effortlessly
as your body yields its scent.

The only effective change we can make in this world is to turn within to see everything differently – through the lens of the Heart.   Through Heart-vision we see that beyond religion, race, politics, and the myriad of things that separate and divide humanity, we are all the same – each one of us are pure beings of Love.  The world is calling…calling…calling for us to remember this truth now.

            A Course in Miracles teaches that instead of seeking love from other people and in all the wrong places, seek and find the barriers within yourself that block the awareness of Love’s presence.  This is not an overnight venture, but the journey of a life-time.  Once begun, it is as if you allow an inner archaeologist to join with you to excavate the gold within.  The gold is the real you – the you that exists beyond feelings of guilt, fear and ‘not good enough’ – the you that is only Love.

            And yet…we don’t believe that we are Love while mesmerized by the fearful stories of the world, but we must learn to look beyond the world and to the perfection deep within that is ready to radiate through us and out into the world.  Love goes with you wherever you go, and it is the Source of all joy and peace and union.

            As you go about your life in the ensuing New Year, let Heart-vision show you that there is so much more light in this world than darkness, much more love than hate.  Today, we can make a difference with even such simple gestures as a smile, a Thank You, a silent blessing of love.  May we be willing to reveal through the very living of our lives that this world need not be a dark and lonely place. 

~ Sending much Light and Love to you ~