Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Some of you may have noticed that I haven’t written my blog for a while.

I had computer troubles that held me up, and then I hit a phase of intense self revelation  and quite honestly, I wasn’t sure how to share that in my blog.  But here goes.

 I am not sure how it is for those of you reading this, who also study A Course in Miracles ~ but ever since I started doing the work on a daily basis,  (in 2003) I have experienced spiritual “bombshells” from time to time. This is when some obstacle to my awareness of Love’s Presence has come to the light and dissolved.  Sometimes this is the result of days, (weeks, months, years!) of prayerful intention and then “POOf”! and some block has gone. Oftentimes it is more spontaneous and the trail to the revelation seemingly unknown to me.   Some of this undoing has happened through conversations with my dear friend and mentor Tom Carpenter.

 In a recent conversation with him, a belief I had held, that I certainly had no idea I held, came to light. I heard myself saying “I don’t believe God is interested in me”. I was SHOCKED to hear myself say that, but the intensity of the emotion that went with it made me know this belief was true.  It certainly explained the accusations I have made over the years towards certain lovers or some family members that they weren’t  interested in me.

 In the aftermath of this revelation, and my continuing willingness to open to knowing the whole of me was loved, I felt like a massive wall inside me was crumbling uncontrollably, and behind it was a tsunami of Love.

 I justified this belief (that God isn’t interested in me) as a logical extension of the idea that God doesn’t see us or know us as separate individuals. He only knows our perfection as the Oneness. However I am realising that actually this belief was just another cunning way for my ego to hide its guilt.

 I had forgotten the power and the presence of the gift God placed inside us expressly because of His utter Love for us. The gift is often known as the Friend, and in Course in Miracles language is often, also, called the Holy Spirit. Even though I work consciously with the Holy Spirit every day, I had this belief buried below the surface as a defence and was unaware it was there, or how it was limiting my life experiences!

 One of my intentions at the moment is to be more willing and open to hearing the Holy Spirit, or Voice for God. Perhaps this is why I have had this revelation?!  I accept that God is talking to us all the time, so if we think we can’t hear guidance, it is because, actually, we don’t want to.  I decided to change my attitude.

 Anyway, the day before I discovered this mistaken belief, and this edifice began to fall, I heard that my mum was going to have major, serious surgery ~ the third operation this year. I had been strong and brave about the others, but this time my defences began to crumble.  I had been holding in my awareness that in Truth, nothing can happen to us, we cannot die, be harmed or injured in anyway ~ that our real relationship with each other will never change.  I do know this is true, but somehow, part of me was hiding and using this belief as a defence, rather than letting it be a wholly living experience.

 The morning of the day I spoke to Tom, I was at a group meeting in my village of Forest Row.  This is an open group called Understanding, (organised by our local C of E vicar) where people of different faiths and beliefs come together to listen to each other’s views on spiritual or philosophical topics. The theme that morning was “why are we here?”. I was espousing the idea that there is no death in response to a question a woman had asked me directly “what do you think happens when you die?” Then I started talking about my mum, and telling how I was practicing getting to know her now, as Spirit, like she will be when she dies. This lovely woman sitting opposite me, who had asked me the question, interrupted my flow, in the most loving way by telling me to stop theorising ideals and “just love her ~   She just needs your love”.  My tears, and her loving intervention, melted my pride, resistance, and fear.

 The Holy Spirit was speaking to me, through her, and through my friend Tom, in the evening.  There is nothing about us not to love, no time, no gap, no separation, no event, no wall, no defence needed.

 Describing Love as a tsunami of course indicates the fear that I might be obliterated by Love, but all that will dissolve is my fear and guilt.  As Tom wrote afterwards:~ “no matter how desperately we try to feel unloved, being unloved is something we cannot bring about”.

 Will you join me dear reader, in the intention to know how fully and wholly we are loved, loving and capable of loving?

SIN is a very loaded word in our modern consciousness. It is perhaps even more difficult than the word God. People will tell me “I don’t believe in sin”. What they are rightly saying is that they don’t believe in a traditional religious story that keeps us in a state of unworthiness and perpetual guilt, feeling bad about ourselves.  Modern consciousness knows that isn’t the truth. Like many of us, I experience a growing awareness and desire to accept the Innocence and genuine loving nature that we share.

However, the section just finished, (for those following the yearly cycle of lessons), lessons 251 – 260, took me into a whole new realm of understanding what is really meant by the word sin.  Here I will comment on a few thoughts that were particularly meaningful to me.

Anything that is not the Oneness, (Love creating love, us, like Itself), is sin. Sin is all the thoughts/devices/bodies that we put between ourselves and truth, to stop us from knowing the truth about our Oneness.  What need would I have for eyes to see if I was being who I really am?  There is NOTHING out there to see. We created the world as proof that everything is separate, diverse, different. Eyes, and all our other senses, simply perceive our belief in separation, they prove there is a you and a me. The world doesn’t exist in and of itself, but it does reflect my state of mind in any moment.

Lesson 251 begins, “I sought for many things and found despair”. How true is that?! When I look back over my life, I feel exhausted by all my seeking and striving that seems to have come to nought.  The theme of this section reminds me of two of the most important lessons for me in the first half of the work book: 128  “The world I see holds nothing that I want” and 129 “Beyond this world there is a world I want”.  I am not going to find anything here in this world that endures, that does not change, that will not eventually hurt me, however hard I try to find it and keep it safe. That is the meaning of sin. But there IS a world that is true and constant and filled with a LOVE I can only begin to imagine right now, but that I can open to and have in this holy instant! It is all a question of choice.

That is what we are reminded of in lesson 253.  “My Self is ruler of the Universe”. ~ With which self do I want to identify?  The self that rules a separate universe as small as my identity as Annie, body and personality, or the Self that rules a universe that  stretches as far as I can imagine and beyond time and space, emanating an unconditional and boundless Love.

A huge relief for me in doing A Course in Miracles is finally I  feel like I have found my purpose, I know what I am doing here on Earth. And that is practicing forgiveness. Lesson 257 reminds us, “let me remember what my purpose is” and lesson 258 tells us why, “let me remember that my goal is God”.  That is all I want, not the things for which I have sought and striven, that I thought would bring me happiness and peace.

In the introduction to the section about sin, Jesus says it is the body’s nature to strive.. I have just started working out with a personal trainer at the gym, and joked that luckily for him, because it keeps him in work, “the body always wants more”.  And what he really means is the ego. Whatever we achieve we will never be satisfied for long. However, we can give the striving of the body a different goal, remembering it is, in itself neutral, an effect of the mind and not a cause of anything.  We can use it as a means of communicating Oneness, through our being-ness, not our proselytising. Just being, extending love.  This leads on wonderfully into the next section of the workbook which is all about the body!

Blessings to you all who might be reading this. Have a beautiful day.

Annie.

liliesI felt inspired to respond to lesson 241, last Saturday, 29th August, but I was going away for the weekend, and didn’t have time. But it has stopped me from writing anything else since, so here goes!

Lesson 241:~ “This holy instant is salvation come”.

There is a line in the commentary on this lesson where Jesus says: “I will be forgiven by you today”.

Forgiving Jesus??? To me, at first, this seemed to be a preposterous and extraordinary idea. This is not the only place in ACIM where Jesus asks for our forgiveness.

I first came across this idea in one of my most favourite passages, in the Clarification of Terms about Jesus-Christ. “Walking with him (Jesus) is just as natural as walking with a brother whom you knew since you were born, for such indeed is he. Some bitter idols have been made of him who would be only brother to the world. Forgive him your illusions, and behold how dear a brother he would be to you”.

I have realised how all the images of Jesus, all the stories and ideas of what he means to us, and how history has used his name to commit a mighty number of cruel and violent deeds, all of these things, obscure the reality of his holy and living Presence, his infinite LOVE and tenderness, his power and his Peace, and the truth that we are ONE with what he is.

In the Easter Section of the Text, (20. 11. 4. 1,2.)  Jesus says “I have great need of lilies, for the Son of God has not forgiven me. … he who offers thorns to anyone is against me still and who is whole without him? Be you his friend for me that I may be forgiven, and you may look upon the Son of God as whole”.

There is only One Son of God, and it is ALL OF US. Jesus is part of us, inseparable. Forgiving anyone, seeing through to the Truth of them as the One Self we share, IS forgiving Jesus. While any person on this earth remains unforgiven, then Jesus is waiting with us for forgiveness.  While we hate ourselves, and refuse to accept what we truly are, Jesus we are denying who Jesus truly is as well.

Let us deepen and renew our commitment to forgive ourselves, and those around us. Let us see ourselves as God sees us.

Sunday was a difficult day for me. I woke up feeling really bad about myself, my worst ego stories back to haunt me. How do I write about that in a blog?

I found the lesson 235  difficult:~ God in His mercy wills I be saved .  The instructions were:~  “I need but look upon all things that seem to hurt me, and with perfect certainty assure myself  God wills I be saved from this and merely watch them disappear”.  How easy is that?! I felt resistance and disbelief in my soul and how I couldn’t even bear to look at what seemed to bothering me.  I kept repeating to myself, “God wills that I be saved”…yet judging myself for my agitation.

Then I looked again at the lesson. And read “God in his mercy wills that I be saved”. Suddenly I felt such a LOVE surrounding me and giving me the courage to LOOK more honestly, and without judging, what was seeming to hurt.  This gave me a new meaning to mercy. Beyond guilt, beyond being in the compassionate power of another.  (dictionary definitions).

I know there is no reason not to be happy or filled with love in every moment, so if and when I don’t feel that way I have often been very tempted to blame and judge myself for feelings of depression, unworthiness, hate or guilt. Here the lesson tells us to simply keep in mind “my Father’s Will for me is only happiness, to find that happiness comes to me”.  Again, I resisted this thought. It had to be harder or more complicated than that!

But lesson 236 follows so beautifully reminding us in every moment that we have a choice:~ I rule my mind, which I alone must rule. If I keep in mind God wants me to be happy, then there isn’t any room in my mind for my ego to take control and try to do it her way!  When I acknowledge my own holy Spirit, and decide to let that true Self be in charge, then I can relax and enjoy the ride.  I might have to remind myself many, many times during the day, who is in charge.

Lesson 237, Now would I be as God created me. Light, Love, Life.

Today, I can accept I am the Light of the world, and join with all parts of consciousness in that awareness:~ those who know it already, those who are wanting to open to it, and those who still are the light, but may not yet realise it. I can choose the Light is what I am going to see in them, whoever they are.

The Light of God is “shimmering on the horizon of consciousness”. Let it arise today, in you and me, and everyone.

Blessings!    Annie.

I wrote two entries commenting on the lesson for yesterday, but did not have time to post them, so here they are a day later!

Annie, with my mum.

Son? Father? I know for many these words feel like big obstacles, especially for all us daughters of Goddess.  But really whether we are male or female is irrelevant, because our gender is already part of duality, part of separation.

Mother, today, I am your Daughter again.  It doesn’t matter about the words….. they are second or third hand removed from Truth anyway…. It’s the feeling ~ of an all loving, caring, nurturing, protective, omnipresent, powerful, strong presence, that gave us birth and who only wants happiness and loving experiences for us.

Language itself is part of separation, so I am not going to be offended by a word:~ that Son is used, (note capital S) to describe the presence of Love that I am, and is inside every human being, dead or alive. In fact is in the only thing about us that is real, that endures, that exists in eternity, beyond time and space.

Son of God, One of God. I like that Son rhymes with One. The Holy One of God. There is only One of us here.

Second thought….

The prayer today is a prayer of gratitude:~

“We thank You, Father, that we cannot lose the memory of You and of Your Love…. We give thanks for all the gifts you have bestowed on us”.

In fact, as Ken Wapnick says in commentary on today’s lesson:~ “The only thing missing is our awareness of God’s Love”.

And through practicing Gratitude, our Heart’s Door opens to Love. It really works if we do it!  (Robert Holden also suggests writing One Hundred Gratitudes:~ things we are grateful for, and why, in his wonderful new book Be Happy).

One of the deep blessings of my life is that, as a child, my mother (in photo with me above, a few years ago)  would come and kneel with me at bedtime, by my bed, (and get my Dad to come too!) and we would say a short prayer. It always began with “Thank you God, for a lovely day!” What a wonderful gift in the education of the habit life of my mind.

Thank you God. Because You Are, I Am. Because of You, I Live! Thank You God, for creating me like You, the Loving Presence that pervades all things.  Thank You God, for all the countless blessings of my life.

Thank you God, for the freedom You have given me, so that whatever I think, I create. “I am resonsponsible for the life I see”.

Thank you God, for the everything that I am. “I already have everything because I am everything”.

Thank you God, for giving me the gift of the Holy Spirit.  That presence in my mind who understands my separate ego self, and how knows how to take me Home, and is doing so in the perfect way for me.

Thank you God for giving me the gift of Peace. That already exists in me and pervades my world and brings eternity and Heaven right here.

Thank you God, for the Oneness that I am.  That as far as my mind can reach, in my imagination, as I picture this world, and all the myriad people and situations and aspects of nature, there I Am.

Thank you God, that I have nothing to fear, because when I look out into the world, there is only Love, looking back at me.

Thank you God, for Bella, who showed me how to start this blog, and encouraged me to do this.

And thank you to all of you who are reading this, and sharing in the journey of opening to Love’s Presence.

Annie.

Am I willing to receive a “Love whose tenderness I cannot comprehend”? W.233.1.7.

I have given my life to God for years! At least I thought I had.

I remember, years ago, long before I had ever opened the ACIM book, I was on retreat, staying in the peaceful guest lodge of a Nunnery on the Isle of Wight.

Every day the host nun would come to visit. I would come out of my room, hastily closing the door behind me, hoping she would not see my “pagan” circle of pine cones and branches, I had laid on the floor, and in which I sat each day, waiting “on the Presence”, drawing my feelings with pastel colours, meditating, singing…..

The nun and I would sit together in the sitting room and talk. We were the same age, had both been to university, and had lots to share, in terms of our search for Truth. I was on retreat for typical reasons, unhappy living with my boyfriend, frustrated with my work, feeling like my spiritual life was not progressing……most of all some kind of perpetual broken heart.  She asked me if I had given my relationship to God? I was shocked by her question…..I had always felt some kind of competition between my spiritual life and my relationship/sex life…..True, I was using all kind of self help books, and had seen therapists to try to find out what was “wrong with me” that I had never been married…. But I realised I actually didn’t trust God with this huge part of my life, in fact I realised it was a question of either/or.

Well that was fourteen years ago….. and thanks to the teachings of ACIM, I am much more able to give every aspect of my life, my whole self to God, and not feel it is a competition, or that I know better how to run my life, or imagine I know would make me happy.  This morning, in the meditation on the lesson, I found it hard to concentrate, so I began to pray, in my own words about how I wanted to give my life to God, and let Holy Spirit be my guide in EVERYTHING today.  And then I suddenly remembered how giving and receiving are the same….. so if I was giving my life, my work, my relationship life, the friend I was meeting today, decisions I had to make today, my toothache….etc what was I receiving?  Am I open to receive the life that I am giving? Am I willing to hear and allow God, that holy Presence of Love, guide my life? Am I willing to receive a “Love whose tenderness I cannot comprehend”?

Giving our life to God to guide, is not about the relentless shopping list the ego makes of our lives, and expecting Holy Spirit to make it all nice and successful….. it’s truly about letting go “the to do” list, and concentrating on that Presence of Love in everything, and allowing THAT to guide each day.

Blessings on your day, dear companion,  let Love lead us today.  Annie.

As I contemplated this lesson today, I felt a glimpse of a place in me that knows I have done nothing wrong, is truly innocent.  I also accepted I could stop judging myself ~ like a chink in the armouring of self attack that is so subtle I don’t even realise I am doing it, most of the time.

More importantly I realised, anew, I really could stop “condemning” others. I could stop the endless list of judgements I make, even about my friends. What a relief in my mind when the storm stops!

The minute I can let go of condemning myself, truly, it is not possible to condemn anyone else, because we are one self!

Blessings, and beautiful Sunday to you all!!!  Annie.

ps I put the word “innocent” in italics because it is one of those ACIM words that I am exploring. I find that it is offering something experiential, deeper than a dictionary definition.

Today’s lesson 227. This is my holy instant of release.

I have often put ACIM’s “holy instant” together in my mind with the idea of the power of now.  I thought it was something to do with being completely present, that would enable me to dive through into the holy Presence.  But today I saw it differently.

The instant we manage to let go of our identity with and our valuing of this world of suffering and self attack, the instant we realise our will never has been separate and differentiated from God’s, in that instant something happens. We are released, and we enter an entirely different world. One where time:~ past, the present now, future, simply doesn’t exist.  And there is only LOVE, which is God’s Will and our will, because it is what we are.

And we do have the chance in every moment to decide:~  Do I want to stay in my never ending story of my unique self, or do I want to step into my right mind, be one with God, and know my will is nothing but Love?  This is the holy instant, the choice, it is not about time.

“Holy Spirit, I give you this day. Show me how to completely let go of my world of fear and pain. In this instant, I choose to be one with my own true Self, and open to the only Will that’s real, the only life that is ~ and thus I am released”.

Thank you beloved. Thank you for listening.

Annie.