January Peace of Mind

Mt. Shasta's Heart

OK – So it is mid January!  You may have made some resolutions about things you want to happen or do this year.  How you doing?  The only part of your mind that would care or “seem to mind” is the ego.  The ego is the part of your mind that carries the judge’s gavel and seems to run you around like the cartoon road runner.

But what if you set your goal at the beginning of each day so that no matter what happened that day you would have peace?

A Couse In Miracles Lesson 34.  I could see peace instead of this.

“Peace of mind is clearly an internal matter.  It must begin with your own thoughts and then extend outward.  It is from your peace of mind that a peaceful perception of the world arises.”

Go to http://www.acim.org – click on lessons and then scroll to lesson 34.  You can even close your eyes and have it read aloud to you.

So – each morning, before you get out of bed lie there for a few restful minutes and ask yourself:  “What kind of a day do I want?  What do I want to have happen today? Run through all the events and circumstances that you think the day will hold.

Then looking at them all say:

“But above all, today I choose peace.  No matter what happens I want the peace of God.”

Then it won’t matter if you get the job interview; the check you’ve been expecting; the date or meeting you’ve been waiting for or the diagnosis you’re hoping for.  No matter what happens since your goal is PEACE, you will have it regardless of the outcome of any of the circumstances in your life.

On my white board in the kitchen I’ve written:  Today I want the Peace of God.   You can put it on a note card you carry in your pocket.

In Chapter 17. of the Course, Section VI. Setting the Goal, p.4. (pg. 366)

The value of deciding in advance what you want to happen is simply that you will perceive the situation as means to make it happen.”

If we decide in advance what we want, then we will perceive it and even if we don’t, we will be upset and then remember “Oh, I could see peace instead of this.”

Even if you get what you want, how long will it make you happy?

No matter what happens in our crazy mixed up world, you can have peace!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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From Darkness to Light

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The Course in Miracles tells us that the memory of God comes to the quiet mind.  Is your mind quiet?  Do you want it quiet?  If so, then why isn’t it?

This is an age old question but the answer is simple:   We can’t have a quiet mind if we are judging people.  Judging is the ego’s primary goal and it keeps us in separation and guilt.  We cannot enter God’s Presence alone.  We need to take along our “brother” (the brother we are judging) which means the ACCEPTANCE of Him/Her/Them i.e. everyone.

We are judging people if we cannot accept them as Holy and therefore we are outside of holiness as well.

Look at the judgments and above all – do not judge yourself for making them or the ego has you by the throat.  When you judge yourself (good or bad) you are making the error (the ego and the body) real.    When we hang onto the hate, grievance, upset we are keeping it, the ego’s hate ALIVE!

But we have a purpose in keeping the grievance ALIVE?

When we see the other person, in our dream as separate and split off, they serve as scapegoats for the part of our self we do not want to accept or recognize.

If you don’t see others as holy…..you are not holy.

Judgment is purposive.  It keeps us unholy and bound to guilt.  If we were holy we would be One with God, with Love and we would disappear.  Our individuality would be zero.  We are afraid of Love.  We want to stay unholy, keep the ego and our judgments in order to stay in the world and be FAR away from God….away from Love.

Freedom lies in looking at the hate with Jesus/Holy Spirit beside us.  This is a Course in attaining the light by looking at the darkness.  We expose the darkness by taking gentle steps.  Look at it and going to the quiet center with Holy Spirit say

“I see this anger/hate/fear/grievance, but I don’t want it anymore.  It is keeping me away from peace, from God and from Love. Help me see it differently.  Help me recognize it is a projection, it is not real, this is a dream and a script I chose to experience when I * separated from God.”

Peace is attained by each one of us looking and undoing the hatred in ourselves.  Self-hatred creates guilt and guilt protects us from love.  Joy is finally recognizing you are FORGIVEN and all GUILT is GONE!

*  We NEVER left God.  We just think we did when we chose the ego!

Reference: A Course In Miracles – Chapter 11. God or the Ego, Section III. From Darkness to Light.page 198.

 

 

 

See Love or the Call for Love

See either Love or a Call for Love

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The United Nation’s International Day of Peace is Saturday, September 21. Imagine all the people in all Nations of the World stopping for 24 hours to think about Peace! Peace with other countries, counties, family and neighbors!   The above symbol is love in Arabic.

We don’t have to hate. Do we? Do we have to judge or condemn? If a trusted adult tells us that others are offensive we may tend to believe them especially when we are young. We are taught and most of us believe and accept but we certainly don’t have to. For example my mother was prejudiced against a certain race. I had played with some of these kids at school and liked them so I did not accept her belief but I did obey her and not go to their house. As it turned out my sister married a man of that race and low and behold, she changed her mind. A mind is a beautiful thing to change. Mom was a lovely person but she accepted her conditioning and passed it on. It reminds me of the Roger’s and Hammerstein South Pacific song, “You have to be taught.” But we do not have to accept society’s teaching. Hate is a choice.

Could it be that a part of our mind enjoys hate? Think about how you feel when you are in the “hate” emotion. Doesn’t it make you feel strong and powerful and above all right! Years ago I worked in an office with a young man who was mentally impaired. He was from a rich family and he annoyed me and I disliked him. Looking back after years of spiritual work I wondered what that was about. I think I hated him because he reminded me of my own mental impairment. I always thought I was stupid! We project onto others that which we have inside yet do not want to see or admit. It is projected out and seen elsewhere but heaven not in me! When I think of him now, I send love to him wherever he is and I believe his soul receives it. I know mine does.

Hate and anger are harmful to the hater in many ways.  Have you ever tried to be nice when you didn’t want to? What does that type of mental activity do to the brain/body? Check out the Every Day Health website, https://www.everydayhealth.com/news/ways-anger-ruining-your-health/ this site document from various studies, the side effects of hate and negative emotions on the heart and brain, creating stress hormones causing depression and even inflammation.   The ego is the “Master Judge” in our mind that runs our lives until we understand we are in fact miserable and see through the fog and decide to change our thoughts and choose peace. The ego very wisely uses projection and hate as a road block to love. We choose the ego until we decide not to. We however have a choice because we are a decider!

Hate is offensive.  When we see angry people it is very ugly and distasteful. We feel a churning inside. TV and movies offer a heavy diet of violence and hate an onslaught to the nervous systems.   To be honest we need to admit the hate we see reflected in the world outside, is also within. If we can admit that then we are no longer in conflict and it dissipates. Instead of pulling the “wool” over our eyes we just look honestly and in looking, it dissolves. If we don’t fight it or put up obstacles we avoid a pile of buried guilt being placed deep within the psyche to emerge unexpectedly, which it will. Look squarely at the angry person and see either love or a call for love. Try it. You will access a place of peace. You do not need to say aloud “I love you” merely think it. The mind is choosing love instead of the ego’s automatic response of disgust or hate.   Their anger is their momentarily condition but not their reality. In giving love, you receive it. You don’t know if or what you will “do or say” as the situation will depend on wisdom from the higher Self. But you can always think love.

This quote is attributed to Abraham Lincoln: “To defeat an enemy, make him a friend.” You could also say “To defeat an angry person, recognize it is also within and see either love or a call for love.”

If I exclude love from others; I am excluding love from myself. With compassion we no longer condemn.

We are the same, we all people and nations need peace. The Spark of the Divine is within everyone, so I challenge myself to look for it.

We don’t have to hate. Do we?

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Isn’t hate a judgment?

Isn’t hate a decision?

Isn’t hate a belief?

Isn’t hate enjoyable?

Isn’t hate harmful to the hater?

Isn’t hate offensive?

Does hate infect us with psychic guilt?

The answer is YES, to all of the questions.

We cannot hate unless we have made a judgment about someone or something that we decide is offensive.  We have decided we KNOW what is right or what is wrong.

We cannot hate unless we have been taught that something is offensive or disgusting.   We are the product of our family, societal beliefs and our culture.

We must realize we find a certain enjoyment in hating.  Maybe you hate Trump.  Isn’t he fun to hate?  Maybe you hate Obama.  Isn’t he fun to hate?   We enjoy hating because it makes one feel big, strong, and above all right.  We KNOW we are right and they are wrong.  We LIKE being RIGHT.

For example: We decide being a cheat is terrible.  We’ve been taught and we believe  cheating is bad, even sinful so we hate cheaters.  We see the “sin” of cheating in THEM and hate them for it.  What we are really doing is projecting  our own “cheating sins” onto them and hating them for it and consequently we are released.  They are the sinner not me!  We all have cheated at one time or another but we know it is wrong so we see it in THEM and that makes us feel innocent.

This is the ego’s strategy to keep us projecting and hating and conflicted and separate!

It also keeps us blinded, in misery because we are bereft of love, which is gleeful to the ego while still being mired in unconscious guilt.

The KKK and Alt Right hate Liberals.  Liberals hate the KKK and the Alt Right.  Both groups think they are right.  Both groups enjoy hating the other and see the other as being sinful and wrong.  Both are projecting on the other what they refuse to see in themselves.

The Liberals “hate” the haters, but don’t want to recognize it within and hate the KKK for being blatantly hateful.

The KKK & Alt Right certainly have “hate” but don’t want to recognize it as bad, and hate the Liberals for judging them, something they also do.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un hates Trump.  Trump hates Kim Jong Un.

We all know deep down that hating is wrong so why do we continue to do it.

The ego wants to keep us in a state of hate because it keeps us mired in guilt.  If we are feeling guilty we cannot be happy.  Ego’s Mission Accomplished!

Abraham Lincoln said:  “To defeat an enemy, make him a friend.”

I say:

1. To defeat an enemy, look within.

2. Find the offense.  “I really hate__________.”

3. Realize it is a projection.  You don’t have to know “why” just know you are projecting and that is enough.

4. Own It. “I’m doing this, holding this thought.  No one is forcing me.”

5. Look at it.  “OK, but it’s not pretty” says the ego.

6. When we look, we are actually forgiving.  We have exposed it and acknowledge it.  We let it go, and we are released from the judgment.

7. We are free.

With understanding we can no longer condemn. We are the same.  We all suffer from the same ego judgment.  We all feel guilty.  We all need release.

I admit I am a liberal.  I maintain that if I exclude love from someone; I am excluding love from myself.  I do not agree with the KKK because I exclude no one from my love……even them.  I know the Spark of the Divine is within them too so I must look for it.

God Bless!

http://www.acim.org

http://www.facim.org

http://www.miraclecenter.org

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See!  Here is a divine spark.  Just like yours!

 

 

 

Am I a Body or Spirit?

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As students of A Course In Miracles we are asked to consider our True Identity.

We are born into a body, in a particular family of certain circumstances but seeking the answer to the age old question:  Who am I?  We learn (gradually) we are NOT who we THINK we are!

The Course tells us we are Spirit and little by little we come to understand that YES, that is true, our (eternal) spirit does reside in our body for now but the time will come when we will leave the body, thank it for its service and move on.  We are really caretakers (or not) of our soul that is currently inhabiting this body!

The more and more we REMEMBER we are in fact SPIRIT, the more peace we will have.  When the body has a problem, which it will, it is a chance to say:  NOPE – NOT ME!

Of course we take care and “fix” the body and do whatever we can to stay in the world and learn lessons that are sure to come.   A elderly friend became sick recently and the sickness was such that she decided NOT to “fix” her body!  That was courageous but I know the time will come when I will make that same decision.  I will know what’s right when that time comes and I will leave knowing I did the right thing.

Workbook lesson 199. I am not a body. I am free, is a wonderful lesson to explore the feelings of not being the body.  You can go to http://www.acim.org and click on lessons and then close your eyes and listen quietly to let it sink in.

Remember, you are a decision making Mind!  You have the power to choose!  You have two choices:  Love or Fear.  You can listen to the ego’s fear or listen to the Holy Spirit’s grace and faith.

Isn’t it great to know you have a CHOICE!  That is why you are not a victim.

http://www.facim.org – Lesson 199:  “I am not a body.  I am free.  I hear the Voice That God has given me, and it is only This my mind obeys.”

You Are Aware Consciousness

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“The mind of an enlightened human being is flexible and adaptable. The mind of an ignorant person is conditioned and fixed.”  Ajhan Sumedho, ‘Don’t take your life seriously’, Buddhist Publishing Group

As a student of non-duality, a friend recently loaned me the above book. Ajahn Sumedho. Ajahn, (“teacher” in Pali) was born Robert Karr Jackman, July 27, 1934, in Seattle. He is the senior Western representative of the Thai forest tradition of Theravada Buddhism. A bhikkhu since 1967, Sumedho is considered a seminal figure in the transmission of the Buddha’s teachings to the West.  During the Korean War he served for four years from the age of 18 as a United States navy medic. He graduated in 1963 with an MA in South Asian studies from the University of California, Berkeley. Per Wikepedia

A Course In Miracles has many similarities with Buddhism and the one that stands out from all others is our judgment of ourselves and others. I don’t know about you but I’ve been fixated on politics, our nation and world conditions since the January changes in government. Chaos and change happens in our lives and that creates nervousness and anxiety, the opposing poles of inner peace.   Ajahn says the world is: “just the way it is!” Accept! We are not at peace when we judge anyone; feel superior or inferior to others.” As Babies we were not born with a self-view. That is developed over our lifetime. We therefore become a “created concept” and we suffer and seek answers to the suffering.

Whatever our self-concepts are we are not that!  When we choose, we can acknowledge innate pure consciousness to receive wisdom. Wisdom operates through the marriage of awareness joining with consciousness. Suffering is the theme in The Four Noble truths. Judgment is suffering. As we become aware of pure consciousness, judgments shift and soften: “so it is” or “like this” to pure subjectivity. The ego personality says: “I like this or I don’t like that.” It is my choice then, should I get caught up in the annoyance, suppress it or try to change it? I know I want my way but can I be assured that will bring me peace? Until I can accept the world is just ‘like it is’ and ‘what is just – is’, I am the one choosing to suffer. Buddha called it Dukkha.

When you say: “I AM pure consciousness uncreated” your mind is at rest. Say it slowly with eyes closed. Say it slowly with eyes open. Pure consciousness does not have a sex, nationality or a world view. It means, I AM – not a permanent body; rather I am eternal, consciousness. Consciousness is behind awareness and when melded spark an awakening experience, like the Buddha, or Christ .

Contrast this with the impermanent, unsatisfactory “not self” that we think we are. The idea of “me and mine” created out of ignorance and separation from pure consciousness. The personality and life circumstances always change. You don’t stay the same person as the ego personality is reactive.   Old age is another seeming failure but pure consciousness does not age. Awareness transcends the conditioned ego state. If we continue to give our allegiance and beliefs to the ego rather than to our natural pure awareness, we will suffer – until we tire of it.  We can see seek refuge in awareness and pure consciousness.

As we look at national and world conditions, be aware and say: ‘so it is.’  The Course calls it our script.  It just is and we can view it through the ego i.e. suffering or Awareness i.e the Holy Spirit.  Consciousness is stainless, it cannot be contaminated. I am reminded of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, working for peace yet staying in pure consciousness throughout the tumult of his life and Jesus who assures us we are “As God Created Us” and not the thing or ego we created.

Perhaps we will become enlightened as insanity propels us to approach pure consciousness; non-attachment vs pure hell.  The Holy Spirit within that is the alternative voice to the ego.

As the months and years unfold, our mindful practice, whether with Buddhism or A Couse In Miracles workbook lessons, will guide us to the wisdom and peace available at the center of our One luminous being.

See A Course In Miracles Workbook Lesson 45. God is the Mind with which I think

http://www.facim.org

http://www.acim.org

http://www.miraclecenter.org

 

 

Love Makes No Comparisons

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I have been listening to a CD series of  Dr. Ken Wapnick called: The Experience of A Course In Miracles, A Commentary on the section: “Development of Trust.”  This 10 CD series covers the development of trust and the six stages a student goes through while on the path set forth by the Course.

All of the ten characteristics of God’s teachers rest on Trust which is the first.  The other nine are: Honesty; Tolerance; Gentleness; Joy; Defenselessness; Generosity; Patience; Faithfulness and Open Mindedness.  I am sharing the below notes because it is a powerful look at the dynamic  of why we “LOVE to hate!  (You can purchase the CD series at http://www.facim.org)

Notes from Ken Wapnick, Ph.D. – Development of Trust CD 2.4

“Love makes no comparisons. Love is perfect Oneness.  In Heaven there is no duality – no comparing – no judgment.   In Heaven there is only ONE – not even God and Christ are separate and that One knows nothing else.  God does not know we are here. God  does not know of illusions – if He did it would make it true. No Duality – only One. (For those who are put off by the term “God” just think Love because no one knows what the mystery of God could be.)

In this world however, we have the ego’s distortion of love which in the Course is called “Special Love.”  Here, in the world of duality, everything is based upon comparisons. You have something that I lack and therefore what I lack is what I want – so I set out to get it from you.  We make special relationships very interesting in all the ingenious ways we go about getting or stealing from others what we think we need for our own salvation.

This works both in the forms of special love and special hate.  Special hate is when what you have, that I lack, which is innocence, I then feel sinful because I believe I’m a sinner (and I compare you to me) therefore what I do is I project my sin onto you thereby making you the sinner, and thereby making you worthy of my hate!

That’s why we all love to hate in our world. I hate you because if I make you are the repository of sin, then I am innocent because in the ego thought system it is always one or the other. (So when I hate someone that makes him the sinner and therefore  I am innocent….. per the ego.  This is why we “love” to hate.  We get rid of our guilt nice and neatly.  I’ve always wondered why it is we “love” to hate – especially those of another political party, or someone who is richer, prettier, more talented, etc.  Find an example in your own life to understand the projection/psychology behind it but don’t feel guilty about it just look at what your ego does to keep love away!)

Everything in this world is based upon comparisons. It is impossible to avoid this. Perception is all about comparisons and judgments. You couldn’t see otherwise. When we perceive something we’ve already make the judgment that it is important and everything else is unimportant.

The Right minded use of comparisons is to evaluate the difference between the ego’s thought system and the Holy Spirits. What is the ego’s thought system is all about is judgment and separation.  When we catch the ego’s tricks we understand what it is up to. We see it is false and it is all made up. Our resistance in looking is what makes this so difficult.”

I recommend going to the book: A Course In Miracles; see the Manual for Teachers towards the back of the book; and see # 4. What are the Characteristics of God’s Teachers, I. Trust. and A. Development of Trust.

http://www.facim.org

Elusiveness of Peace and Joy

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The Elusiveness of Peace and Joy!

Do you want peace and joy?  Of course you do.  As least you think you do until you have a judgment or an upset that you won’t let go of.   You are sure something was done to you and you are right and the offending party should go to hell.  Or places like that.   OK – maybe you are right but do you want peace and joy?  You can’t have it if you want someone to go to hell or hold onto an upset that you will not consider in another way.

I know someone who is holding onto a grievance.  He was actually attacked, pushed up against a fence and would have been hit if someone had not interfered.  Why did the perpetrator assault him?  He had responded to an insult with his own insult and that angered the attacker and so he took matters into his hands, literally.  Who started it?  It doesn’t matter.  What matters is how we now find the peace that eluded us the first moment we reacted.  That will be the subject of another article and an important one for now, let’s look at where we find ourselves and how can we choose another way back to the peace we want.

We have not found peace by remembering and replaying the event because we are stuck in our belief system and we are sure we are in the right.  But are you happy being in the right?  Would you rather be right or happy?  Now when we see that person or think of them we are unhappy.  Ask yourself: Do I want peace and joy?

If the answer is YES, then decided to STOP the set belief in your mind (just for a moment) and choose another way to look at this?  Say:  “OK – I’ll look at this another way for the sake of my own peace.”

*“Begin to think of that (person) brother who has been denied by YOU the peace and joy that is his right under the equal laws of God.  You have denied them to yourself and now you claim them as your own. Think of this brother a little while and tell him in your mind:

My brother peace and joy I offer you,

That I may have God’s peace and joy as mine.”

We don’t think that just because we have denied peace and joy someone else that in so doing we are in effect really denying them to our self.  If you hold hate or a grudge in your mind, you are the one HOLDING the hate and the grudge in yourself.  You are the sufferer.  Do you think your brother is suffering?  We don’t know but we do know you are.

Would you rather say to that brother?

My brother, misery and suffering I offer you

That  I may have the ego’s misery and suffering as mine.

Which version do you choose?  If the word God bothers you, take it out.  God won’t care.  That mystery is love and love never condemns.  It doesn’t know how to.  Make a copy of the pledge and paste it around the house.  Take yourself on as a student and train yourself to accept that peace and joy is your inheritance and that you are worth it.

* This quote comes from the spiritual book, A Course In Miracles, Workbook lesson 105 God’s Peace and Joy are Mine.  Visit  www.acim.org  go The Workbook lessons and then when the lesson comes up, click on “hear” and listen to the entire lesson and close your eyes.   Choose peace!

Hint: When you give you also receive!

 

Can we ever agree?

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Yes we can agree and it happens when we find common ground on SOMETHING!
The gift is in finding what that SOMETHING is that we can agree upon!
When we are in agreement there is peace.  Where is peace when we disagree?
Eventually when we master the Course In Miracles we will have PEACE even when “disagreement” is seemingly before us.
The Course says “See love or the call for love.”
As we learn to master the Course, little by little  the judgments are fewer.
They gradually become challenges to find shared values rather than separation.
I wanted to share the link below of Professor George Lakoff of the University
of California Berkley.  He explains why we disagree and has an example of how
we can learn to find common ground and become more agreeable!
It is 27 minutes  interview with Tavis Smiley of PBS  (if you cannot open it just google
Tavis Smiley)
 
Professor of Cognitive Science, George Lakoff, UC Berkeley:
 
http://video.nhptv.org/video/2365951602/
“Teach only love, for that is what you are.”  ACIM T.6. I.13.

You Are a Decision Making Mind

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You are a decision making mind!  Right?!

However, you are a decision making mind that has decided it is NOT a decision making mind!  At least not all the time and here is why.

IN our world of illusion we have a split mind: the ego and the right mind which the Course calls the part of the mind we use to access the Holy Spirit, Jesus, the Love within.  Observe your mind when it is on automatic.  There are thoughts of worry, envy, judgments, fear, and also thoughts of appreciation, a friend, a loved one, clouds or spring flowers, raspberries, chocolate, or coffee.  Understand that there are various categories of ideas, thoughts running helter skelter, hither and yon and where are you?  If you are following your ego lock, stock and barrel you are not using the right mind.  You are off course!  The Course in Miracles, tells us our egoic thoughts are not out real thoughts.  Our real thoughts are the thoughts we share with God, with love.  It also says the memory of God comes to the quiet mind.

The Course In Miracles has a workbook of 365 lessons, one per day, that trains us to see through the veil and reclaim our decision making mind.  That process helps us learns to make the choice between the ego and the right mind.  It is a journey without distance.  You don’t need to travel to see a guru or take a workshop but you will be led by a quiet voice of love within.  The journey is inner, it is between your Self and the Love within that will hold your hand the entire time and for all time.  Take the journey with the intention and determination that you are doing something very Holy.  It is truly a mind training and life changing journey and you will succeed.

Take the journey to your real home.  Start at lesson number 1 and read one every day no matter if you understand it or not.  Keep going!

When you get to lesson 35 you will read: “My mind is part of God’s I am very Holy.”

Keep going – your decision making mind is in charge!  You are on your way HOME to the true Self!

www.acim.org – look at the lessons and the text

www.miraclecenter.org – find a study group in your area.

www.facim.org – lots of wonderful books by Dr. Ken Wapnick

 

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