Principles of A Course in Miracles – by Cindy Lora-Renard

Cindy Lora-Renard and Gary Renard are two of the presenters that will be at the Weekend of Freedom Retreat in Estes Park, Colorado, June 16-19, 2016, a 4-day event centered around sharing inspirations and insights about A Course in Miracles. You can read more about the retreat here. Here is an excellent, lucid new article by Cindy about ACIM:

Cindy Lora-RenardA Course in Miracles
is a purely non-dualistic thought system. Pure non-dualism is a state of mind where “you recognize the authority of God so completely, you relinquish all psychological attachment to anything that is not God.” (from DU) This is a state without compromise. There is only God, and nothing else. A Course in Miracles says, “God Is, and we cease to speak.” This is because there is nothing else to speak about. This means that anything that can take on a form, or shift or change is an illusion, because reality (God) is not a form. It is an awareness of perfect Oneness. And we are a part of that Oneness. The Course calls the world of duality a dream, because it is just a projection coming from the part of the split mind that believes in it and has become identified with it. The mind appeared to split the instant it took the thought of separation seriously, which the Course calls the “tiny, mad idea.” This was the instant the Sonship (all of us as One) appeared to have a thought that it could be separate from its Source. The problem is that we took this idea seriously, and chose what we now call the ego, which is this idea of separation, instead of just remembering to laugh at this tiny, mad idea thought. But in that same instant we chose the separation, God gave his Holy Spirit to us as an answer to the separation, and this Voice says, nothing happened. Being separate is an illusion. “You are still at home in God, dreaming of exile, but perfectly capable of awakening.” But because we didn’t choose to awaken in that instant, the ego created a God which would now punish us for what we believe we’ve done, although that is insane. So we had to come up with a hiding place to escape what the ego believes is the wrath of God. What is denied has to be projected, so we denied our guilt over this, and projected it out and made a world of time and space so that we could now see this guilt and fear outside of us instead of in our own minds which is where it still is. So, the world of time and space is just a dream of fear; a symbol of separation. The work now is to undo this belief in the ego, and with the Holy Spirit’s help, remove the blocks to the awareness of Love’s presence. From a purely non-dualistic perspective, nothing happened and the separation never occurred. We are only mentally reviewing that which has already gone by. Ideas leave not their source, so the world is in our minds and we can withdraw our belief in it, practice Forgiveness and wake up to the home we never left.

Many people ask how the ego can be defined. That which is not true cannot be defined. However, for the purposes of understanding how we can look at the ego, it is the thought of being separate from God. The ego (part of the split mind we all share) wants to be special, unique, and different. It wants to be God. The ego is a destructive thought system based on guilt and fear. This guilt and fear is what made the world of time and space and runs everything until we learn to change our minds and turn to the Holy Spirit and Its way of interpreting things. The ego’s range goes from suspiciousness to viciousness. The two parts of the split mind are the ego and the Holy Spirit, which are mutually exclusive states of mind. Any thought that comes from the ego is not a real thought, because it’s not who you are. Our real thoughts are the thoughts that come from Love, or right-minded thoughts.

Most of the world is still caught in the trap of believing in the dream. Growing awareness is a process over time and doesn’t come all at once, but eventually everyone will come to understand what reality is, and renounce all dreams. In time, this can appear to take a long time. In reality, it’s already done and over. The ego thought system shows itself in all the seeming problems we have here in the world. Again, from A Course in Miracles perspective (which is a purely non-dualistic thought system in which Jesus is the author) there is only one seeming problem; that we are separate from each other and from God. The answer to the separation is accepting the Atonement for ourselves, which is just another way of acknowledging that the separation did not really occur, as it’s just a projection, or a dream. So, we make up all kinds of “big” problems here in the world, which is just what the ego wants. This is the way the ego stays alive. Choosing love over fear means the end of the ego’s thought system and that is threatening to the ego, so it makes up all kinds of problems here so that it can stay in the game. Our military industrial complex is one example of how the ego operates, producing more fear by producing weapons of defense where we use fear to entice the masses into believing we are truly threatened and unsafe. Ghandi was a great example, showing that the use of non-violence can work. The problem isn’t guns, it is the belief of the ego thinking that guns will protect us from violence. So, the ego is using illusions to heal illusions and that never works. Einstein said, “ We cannot solve the world’s problems at the same level of consciousness of which the problems were created.” So, the cycles of war and violence will continue until the people of the world have inner peace, which comes from giving up our children’s toys, letting go of the need to be right, and practicing forgiveness; seeing things another way, with a different teacher in our minds, the Holy Spirit. Having said that, if the military is used under the Holy Spirit’s direction, it could really change how things operate, where it just becomes a system to keep things in order, but without the intention to harm.

So, how do we know if we should take some kind of action in the world?   My opinion is that one should only act on something if it was inspired from the Holy Spirit. If one acts from inspiration, then love is the guide. If one acts with the motivation from the ego, it would come from fear. So, you have a decision to make on whether or not you should take some kind of action, always turn it over first to the Holy Spirit and remember your goal…that you will not make any decisions by yourself (which means with the ego as your teacher). When you trust in the Holy Spirit and turn things over to Him, it is a way of joining in your mind so that you reinforcing the idea of oneness and connectedness. In everything you do, also ask what purpose does this serve? What is the purpose? What is the goal? You will know which teacher you have chosen (ego or Holy Spirit) by the answer to those questions.

The means of the Atonement in ACIM is Forgiveness. I practice the kind of Forgiveness A Course in Miracles advocates, which doesn’t make others errors or my own real. It sees everyone as innocent in Truth, because the separation from God has not really occurred. We are only experiencing a dream of pain, not real pain. In other words, here are the 3 steps I practice when something comes up to disturb my peace:

  1. I remember that I’m dreaming, and that I placed all the figures in my dream that would hurt me so that I could project my guilt and fear onto them and make them the cause of my problems instead of taking responsibility for how I feel or choose to interpret it.
  2. I forgive myself for both my projections and myself for dreaming them.
  3. I then Trust in the Holy Spirit and choose His strength

Along with these steps I keep practicing right-minded thoughts, such as “I am as God created me, His Son can suffer nothing, and I am His son.” Or, “The guiltless Mind cannot suffer.” These all come from the Course. By the way, this doesn’t mean that if someone is abusing you or hurting you that you just stand there and let them. That’s not what the Course is saying. It’s just saying that after you do what is necessary to take care of yourself, you can do the forgiveness work in the mind at the same time or when you are ready. Forgiveness is not about form, it’s about changing your mind about a person or situation or event so that it reflects the Holy Spirit’s thought system, which is one of non-judgment, innocence, and forgiveness of God’s Son who is One with you. Forgiveness is needed here as long as we believe we are separate from one another. When all is forgiven, you will be in the real world, where you will see fear and violence as calls for love instead of attack. Love will replace the fear we have made real, and you will see love and innocence everywhere. Mistakes will not call for punishment, but for correction in whatever way is most loving and helpful.

On several occasions, I’ve experienced a kind of peace and love that is not of this world. It is beyond the world, because it is the only thing that is real. These are very quick/brief moments of bliss, where all fear ceases and there is no doubt. There is just an awareness of being in total Oneness for an instant. From those experiences, I’ve come away with such gratitude for ALL my brothers and sisters who are on path with me. Our paths may look different in form, but the goal is the same. Just as the Course says, “A universal theology is impossible, but a universal experience is not only possible, but necessary.” That experience is recognizing our Oneness and that we are all the Sonship as One Being. We need our brothers and sisters because they help to show us where we have work to do in our minds to heal our own false sense of guilt that we have projected outward. We are blessings to each other, and when we use challenges that come up as opportunities to choose again, to choose the Holy Spirit’s thought system in our minds, then we have chosen the Miracle.

We are the masks, continued … and titanic holodeck chairs

titanic holodeck chairs

In this audio program CA Brooks and Bruce Rawles continue their prior conversation (on another segment of her weekly ACIM internet radio program on 12Radio) about a recent FACIM.org academy class about how we not only wear masks, we’re so identified with seemingly separate selves, that we become the masks, at least in our vivid imaginations. Even when we begin to realize that our masks no longer serve us, there is tremendous resistance to removing them, yet fortunately, we also are inexorably drawn to the ultimate revelation of what we all really are; the truly shared Identity that is the only real peace and fulfillment we’ll ever want or need. From this perspective, above the battleground in the mind’s titanic dream of rearranging holodeck chairs, we can afford to be patient and gentle with ourselves and everyone else while we work through our forgiveness process of undoing our ego investments.

We also refer to this quote in Chapter 20, section 8, paragraph 7 of ACIM’s text:

“Judgment is but a toy, a whim, the senseless means to play the idle game of death in your imagination. But vision sets all things right, bringing them gently within the kindly sway of Heaven’s laws. What if you recognized this world is an hallucination? What if you really understood you made it up? What if you realized that those who seem to walk about in it, to sin and die, attack and murder and destroy themselves, are wholly unreal? Could you have faith in what you see, if you accepted this? And would you see it?”

mask

A Transition in Perspective – A Conversation with CA Brooks

Transition from ego to Inner Kindness TeacherIn this audio programCA Brooks and Bruce Rawles talk on another segment of CA’s weekly ACIM internet radio program on 12Radio, about a few of the ideas in yet another brilliant work from Kenneth Wapnick and the Foundation for A Course In Miracles (FACIM) entitled, “A Transition in Perspective.” One of the ideas we talked about is the metaphor of ego’s dark thread that divides (reinforcing an imaginary split in the mind) and leads further into the dark cavernous abyss of the belief in separation, whereas our Inner Kindness Teacher uses the exact same thread (which now becomes a golden, gently luminous path) but in the opposite direction using shared interests, kindness and – of course, forgiveness – to reveal the blocks to love’s awareness, release them, and replace our insane ideas of isolation with the comforting reminder that our true, eternal heritage is complete innocence, inclusion and a peaceful identity.

C. A. Brooks

Consistency of Means and End – A Conversation with CA Brooks

Knife Switch: separate interests vs. shared interestsIn this audio programCA Brooks and Bruce Rawles talk on another segment of CA’s weekly ACIM internet radio program on 12Radio, about The Consistency of Means and End. The “means” of ACIM is always forgiveness, in one form or another and the “end” is always peace, regardless of how we might try to describe it. The means of forgiveness is always in the mind which means (pun intended) that we DO have the power to choose peace, by means of choosing which thought system (ego or our Inner Kindness Teacher) we want to identify with at any given moment. 🙂 If we aren’t feeling peace, A Course in Miracles suggests – in innumerable ways – that we’re not choosing to listen to that Inner Kindness Teacher (a.k.a. the Holy Spirit or Jesus of ACIM) and trying to do it ‘on our own’ which invariably is some form or behavior we mistakenly believe will bring peace to us from some temporal, external, fleeting circumstance.

We’re gently reminded – when we choose to listen to the voice for kindness – that we don’t have to be subject to the dream world of space time when we’ve shifted our identity to the One that is above the battlefield of dualistic dreams and silly separate interests. Our intentions are merely reflections of this ‘only remaining freedom‘ … the freedom to choose the teacher of Total Inclusion (where our Identity is restored to the Perfect Oneness we never abandoned) … or the teacher of maladaptive solutions to non-existent problems, a phrase Ken Wapnick uses to describe ego’s dysfunctional approach of sin, guilt, fear and death which consistently leads us (with it’s maladaptive means) away from peace. It’s ‘ends’ never make us happy. Ego tries to convince us that it’s miserable ends justify it’s abhorrent means – which always are some form (however cleverly disguised) of the belief in separation.

At every moment our mind ‘throws the switch’ … either for peace (choosing the teacher of peace with it’s curriculum of true forgiveness of the dreamer) … or for the paradigm of victimhood, blame, attack, isolation and grievances. We either choose – moment to moment to moment – separate interests … or shared interests.

C. A. Brooks

August 2015 ACIMblog bulletin

ACIM Virtual Conference #2: Oct 16-18, 2015

MiracleShare.org 2015 ACIM Virtual ConferenceThe second annual ACIM Virtual Conference hosted by MiracleShare.org is happening October 16 through 18 and you can register now for this 3-day interactive ACIM event here if you haven’t already. I’ll be sharing about Workbook Lesson 243 “Today I will judge nothing that occurs” in a conversation with Danielle Scruton, one of the organizers of this wonderful event. There will be about two dozen other outstanding ACIM presenters/teachers (such as Gary Renard, Susan Dugan, Myron Jones, Jon Mundy, Dov Fishman and Carrie Triffet, to name just a few) who will also have a pre-recorded 30-minute video (either a monologue – like I did last year about the Double Shield of Oblivion – or a conversation) followed by a half-hour live phone-in Q&A session, along with a chat window where we can further extend the conversation and communion in text form; all great fun! I hope you can join us! If you haven’t already (virtually) attended last years, you can still register, watch and listen to the full conference from last year here until October 2015! No airline flights, rental cars, hotel reservations, etc. needed, either! 🙂


Streaming Academy Classes from FACIM

FACIM Academy Class

I recently ‘virtually’ attended (via streaming video) the most recent Academy Class from Foundation for A Course In Miracles (FACIM) from Temecula, CaliforniaI’m re-watching (my 2nd re-play viewing after also watching the class live) the 2-day video of the “Finding Joy in a Joyless Place” class which had some wonderful insights from Dr. Rosemarie LoSasso and Dr. Jeffrey Seibert. They team-taught this most recent class and are doing a superb job of carrying on where Ken Wapnick left off in sharing the oh-so-gentle but uncompromising non-dual metaphysics of ACIM. I plan to attend many more, including other workshops and classes in addition to the academy classes.

Earlier this year, incidentally, FACIM was using a different (problematic) video streaming provider, so the prior video streaming experience was technically challenged, but not anymore! This 2-day class video streaming experience worked flawlessly for me. The high resolution and excellent bandwidth audio and video make it almost like being there in the classroom. So now, both the content (which was always great) AND the form are outstanding! All highly recommended! Here’s the FACIM schedule of classes and events – ALL HIGHLY RECOMMENDED – many of which you can attend now via streaming video in addition to in person, if you happen to be in Temecula.


“The Little Willingness” – An Audio Conversation with Susan Dugan

Susan Dugan and Bruce Rawles - video: Workbook Lesson 134 Let Me Perceive Forgiveness As It Is - And What Is Forgiveness

Susan Dugan and Bruce Rawles comment in this video on “The Little Willingness” from text of A Course in Miracles (T-18:IV). More at Susan’s blog, ForaysInForgiveness.com. We talked about the importance of trusting our Inner Kindness Teacher (a.k.a. Holy Spirit, or the Jesus of ACIM) to provide the needed correction to our limited and distorted perception and being willing to release our attachment to thoughts that result in anything but peace. We need to humbly look at our misery with this guidance in order to release our addiction to misery. Our part is very tiny, but crucial in undoing our buying into ego’s misinterpretations.


Upcoming and Recent Interviews / Webcasts / Videos / Meetings / Conferences / Presentations/ Classes / Resources

ACIM Resources, Events, Musings – your suggestions and contributions invited!

Please contact us to share anything would like to see here, suggestions for inclusion, improvements, etc. If you have anything ACIM-related that you’d like to share, please send (or send a link) for consideration. This site is (among other things) a venue for conversations, so I eagerly encourage and await more contributions from kindred students of our Shared Teacher of forgiveness and kindness. It’s fun to share our universal interests online; visit ACIMblog pages on FaceBook FaceBook (my personal FB page, which is frequently ACIM-related), Twitter and YouTube. If you aren’t already receiving this automatically in your email, you can subscribe here for free and get daily updates (of any posts made the prior day) via the “post updates by email” Subscribe button on every page. Eternal smilezenhugs to all! 🙂ACIMblog star image

A story about our innocence; “A Loving King”

copyright© Dave Van Dyke 2015

Once upon a time there was a kingdom that had a very loving King. The king’s name was Artemis and he had a son whose name was Julian. On Julian’s seventeenth birthday (and his coronation), the King, being an artist, painted his son’s portrait. The King felt it was the most loving gift he could give.

Julian was honored by this gesture and was very grateful to his father. As a young boy he loved and admired his father greatly and wanted to be like him. But now, as a young man, his interests began to turn toward the world. What was outside these castle walls he wondered? Life in this kingdom was nice, to be sure…but it was always the same. Was there something different outside these walls?

Time passed and the prince found life in the palace somewhat boring. He found a way to slip outside the castle walls unnoticed so he could discover what else life might hold in store. Once he was outside the walls it was an easy walk to the city below. He went to a market square where there was all kinds of activity. As he arrived he was excited by all the color, noise and chaos. So much for the senses to take in! It was much different than the days that passed so placidly within the castle walls. One day, while he was in the market, he saw a beautiful pendant as he perused the wares of a jewelry maker. As the jewelry maker turned his back for a moment Julian, infatuated with this piece of jewelry, stole it.

After returning to the castle, Julian felt shame and guilt about the theft but somehow could not bring himself to return the jewelry. He had never seen another pendant like it and, if he were caught trying to return it, it would bring a great dishonor upon himself and the King. He reasoned that it would be safer for everyone if he kept it.

He began to pace his room and as he walked by the portrait that his father had painted of him he felt a wave of unworthiness go through him. He felt he did not deserve the beautiful painting his father had painted. Certainly the image in the painting was too perfect. Something in his mind instructed him to find some paints and to deface the painting just a little bit.

After finding some paints Julian added some small imperfections to the face. “There!” He said. “Now you’re ugly on the outside as well as the inside”.

A few days later, it seemed as if the excitement of the world was calling to him again and he slipped outside the castle walls to go to the city below. Walking through the streets, he heard great laughter and uproar coming from a building. Curious to see what all the joy was about he entered the establishment and was struck by all the singing and comradery surrounding him. He did not recognize any of the music but started to sing the melody as best he could. Soon he had some of the words down and was able to join in with the crowd. A woman offered him a mug full of something and, wanting to be part of the fun, he accepted and began to drink. Slowly he became less inhibited and louder. Beyond that he did not feel very good and felt he needed to get back to the castle. The following morning he had a painful headache and threw up several times. Again he began to feel guilty and again defiled the portrait his father had given him.

Over time he noticed that his experiences outside the castle walls were only moderately satisfying. They were not always happy even if he had the intention of making them so. He realized that in the past five years he had stolen, lied, gotten drunk and become more selfish. He came to regard others as a threat. With each excursion into the city, he felt that the castle was becoming less and less his home and that his real life was part of the city below.

Julian began to hate the portrait his father had painted for him. All it did was make him feel that he had failed to live up to the image his father had given him. It was now so covered with paint that it was a parody of the original portrait his father had given him. He had RUINED his father’s portrait! His disdain for the image he now saw was driving him to seek solace in the misery of the city below.

His heart aching, Julian went to a tavern in the city and sat in a crowd of people yet felt very lonely. Finding nothing to comfort him he walked through the streets seeing people go about their daily business caught up in the exchange of goods, arguing, struggling, trying to survive in this world and hoping for some scrap of happiness. Then Julian remembered that there was a time when he used to be happy. It was when he was younger. It was before he began to come down to the city. He remembered the simplicity of that existence, the innocence of it. A great longing for that time came into his heart and he returned to the castle.

Finally, being very unhappy and ashamed, Julian went to his father to tell him what he had been doing. Now in his father’s presence he said: “father I have let you down. I have been sneaking into the city to live a life apart from the beautiful life you gave me. I have stolen, I have been drunk, I have lied…I am no longer worthy to be your son”.

King Artemis looked with love on his son and told him: “my son, I have known all along that you have been going down to see the city. But that doesn’t change my love for you. How could you think that my love would ever change? The way I see you is still perfect, as perfect as the picture I painted five years ago. Let us go look at it together”.

Julian panicked and resisted his father’s request. But finally it was obvious that his father would not change his mind. Finally Julian admitted that he had defiled his father’s picture of him.

King Artemis looked with compassion upon his son and told him that it would not be possible to defile such a beautiful image. Julian felt even more ashamed at this point. He knew that he would now have to show his father the painting in order for him to believe that it really had been defiled.

King Artemis and Julian stood together and looked upon the painting. After a long silence King Artemis said to Julian: “there! You see? It is still beautiful”. Julian looked at his father in disbelief. “Father! Can you not see what I have done“?! The king said gently: “what I see in front of the perfection is easily removed”. Julian said: “how can this be? I painted on top of your masterpiece and now it is ruined”. King Artemis smiled and said: “nothing has changed from the day I created this beautiful image of you and if you let me, I will show you that it is still beautiful.”

Julian was mystified by what his father was saying but agreed to let the king show him how this image could still be perfect. King Artemis went over to the painting and, moving his hand up close to the painting, tapped it with a large royal ring on his finger.

The image shattered. All of Julian’s painting had been done on a layer of glass that protected the original painting. There, protected and unchanged, was the perfect, original image that his father had created.

Julian was relieved and grateful that his father’s love had not changed. By accepting the grace of his gift he was able to forgive himself.

King Artemis told his son that he need not be ashamed or feel guilty about going out into the world. He said; “my Son, it is with the greatest of love that I tell you this; I want for you what you want for yourself. I will never judge you for what you desire because I know that behind all your desires is the desire to love only your Father.”

Julian had assumed his father would be upset to know of this desire to explore life so he hid the desire away instead of simply knowing that his father’s love would be with him no matter what he did.

Knowing that his father’s love for him could not change gave him great courage and peace. This allowed him to accept others as they were. From that day forth Julian was a great teacher of love in his own life and others.

– The End –

David VanDyke

April 2015 ACIMblog bulletin

Forgiveness: The Key to Happiness – a new book by Susan Dugan

Forgiveness: The Key to Happiness by Susan Dugan - book coverACIM teacher and author, Susan Dugan, has a new book: Forgiveness: The Key to Happiness, which has just been released on Amazon in paperback and also for Kindle.

Here’s Susan’s description of the book:

In Forgiveness: The Key to Happiness, Susan Dugan continues to recount her personal journey in learning to change the purpose of our relationships from rooting ourselves more deeply in a childish dream of separation, to growing up to accept our shared interest in remembering the uninterrupted, eternal love of our true nature. Her deeply poignant, entertaining essays explore how to really live the teachings of A Course in Miracles, learning to view our lives as a classroom in which we encounter a better way of relating to each other through the inner teacher of forgiveness instead of sin, guilt, and fear. By making our relationship with our inner teacher the most important thing, we discover how to honor the power of everyone’s decision-making mind by connecting with our own, recognizing our own mind in need of healing in our desire to fix, change, and control others. Ultimately realizing, through moment-to-moment practice, how to relate to all there is from a healed perspective beyond guilt, blame, and need.

You can read more about the book on Susan’s blog, Forays In Forgiveness.

I’ve only read about a third of this enjoyable new book as of this posting, but I wanted to let everyone know about it ASAP! Susan’s two other superb – and very fun-to-read, accessible, insightful and highly recommended ACIM-related books are: Forgiveness Offers Everything I Want, and Extraordinary Ordinary Forgiveness, I highly recommend all three of these books!


The Laws of Chaos – a conversation with CA Brooks

Chaos spiral

Is truth different for everyone? in this audio programCA Brooks and Bruce Rawles talk another segment of CA’s weekly ACIM internet radio program on 12Radio, about The Laws of Chaos. We talk about how we’re all attracted to chaos, confusion, and discord, all the while denying that we secretly savor the dubious payoffs of ego’s insane logic. The perfectly consistent, but perfectly insane ‘logic’ of our split minds leads to feeling lonely, abandoned, betrayed, threatened, jealous, unfairly treated, and victimized – to name just a few emotions in ego’s diversionary bag of deception. How else could we feel when following the dictates of a partial thought system, where wholeness is not allowed? Yet, we all have a calm Inner Kindness Teacher who gently reminds us that this need not be our state of mind. 🙂


Upcoming and Recent Interviews / Webcasts / Videos / Meetings / Conferences / Presentations/ Classes / Resources

ACIM Resources, Events, Musings – your suggestions and contributions invited!

Please contact us to share anything would like to see here, suggestions for inclusion, improvements, etc. If you have anything ACIM-related that you’d like to share, please send (or send a link) for consideration. This site is (among other things) a venue for conversations, so I eagerly encourage and await more contributions from kindred students of our Shared Teacher of forgiveness and kindness. It’s fun to share our universal interests online; visit ACIMblog pages on FaceBook FaceBook (my personal FB page, which is frequently ACIM-related), Twitter and YouTube. If you aren’t already receiving this automatically in your email, you can subscribe here for free and get daily updates (of any posts made the prior day) via the “post updates by email” Subscribe button on every page. Eternal smilezenhugs to all! 🙂ACIMblog star image

January 2015 ACIMblog bulletin

FACIM offers new streaming classes in 2015

The Foundation for A Course In Miracles (FACIM) continues to offer their academy classes via streaming video; the next 3-day class is February 15-17, 2015. These new streaming classes greatly expand access to those who may not find it convenient to attend the sessions in person in Temecula, California. Kudos to FACIM for adding these additional online venue for their superb programs! I attended the first 1-day class recently via streaming and the content was excellent; Jeff and Loral and those in attendance had superb contributions.

Ken Wapnick’s musical inspirations

Beethoven - A Late Quartet

While in some sense, attention to specifics and form (in this case musical forms) can be, and often is, co-opted by ego to further the purpose of mindlessness and ego’s twin shields of oblivion, we can also use–when guided by our Inner Kindness Teacher a.ka. Holy Spirit a.k.a. Jesus of ACIM–any specifics for a different purpose: to undo our identification with the finite selves we made up and seem to keep us ensnared in a miserable thought system with a needlessly despicable, partial and incomplete self-concept. With that caveat and gentle vigilance in mind, here’s some of the music that Ken Wapnick refers to in Journey Through The Text of A Course In Miracles and other locations in his prodigious and brilliant works, with the intent that we might use inspirations such as these to return to the melos, the inclusive thought system that we all share, from which we appear to be taking an absurd and extended sabbatical from through our silly space-time dream dramas. 🙂

In numerous instances in Kenneth Wapnick’s work, he refers to music that has inspirational qualities, particularly masterful works by Beethoven and Mozart. Here is one particular recording, Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 14 in C-Sharp Minor, Op. 131: VII. Allegro – op. 131 – performed by the Brentano String Quartet. The video also references a related movie which uses Beethoven’s Late Quartets as a backdrop to the story, named, appropriately enough, A Late Quartet. When I first listened to this YouTube recording, it seemed difficult (no doubt due to ‘my’ resistance) to access the ‘melos’ that Ken talks about, the thematic whole that is the inclusive song, not merely the notes. Now that I’ve listened to it several times, I’m beginning to fathom the depths that this music conveys. I suspect that this will deepen with repeated listening… How symbolic of the gradual ego-identity undoing process that requires our persistent practice, practice, practice to be alert, perceptive and open to letting go of our personal prejudices and preconceptions, and allowing what we all share universally to replace our limiting beliefs.

As Gary Renard’s teachers, Arten and Pursah suggest, repetition (of practices that lead to undoing ego, such as mindfulness, forgiveness, shared interests and trusting our Inner Kindness Teacher) is not only a good idea, it’s crucial to our returning to the Perfect Oneness … that we never left.

We’re also in the season of Groundhog Day, and that movie has been a favorite reminder that consistent practice does indeed strengthen – we just need to choose WHICH thought system we want strengthened! 🙂

Here is another “Ken fave”: Beethoven’s String Quartet no. 13 in Bb, Op. 130, which contains this commentary: “The String Quartet No. 13 by Beethoven was completed in 1825, and though traditionally assigned the number 13, it was the 14th quartet in order of composition. Its original form consisted of six movements totalling approximately 50 minutes. After the work’s first performance, mixed reactions and his publisher’s suggestion convinced Beethoven to substitute a different final movement, one much shorter and lighter than the enormous Große Fuge. This new finale was written in 1826 and is thus the last substantial piece of composition Beethoven completed before his death, and he never witnessed it. The original finale was then published separately. Modern performances sometimes follow the composer’s original intentions, leaving out the substitute finale and concluding with the fugue. The Cavatina (by the Budapest String Quartet) is the last piece on the Voyager Golden Record.”

Ken also mentioned (in Journey Through The Text‘s introduction) his admiration for the Budapest String Quartet; here’s a performance of Beethoven’s Late Quartets by the Budapest String Quartet, and Beethoven’s Grosse Fuge op.133 – Budapest 1951:
Ken also speaks highly of conductor Wilhelm Furtwängler; here are recordings of Beethoven’s music conducted by Furtwängler of:

Yet another Wapnick favorite is Beethoven’s Sonata #29 (HammerKlavier) which is part of the video below:

Richard Wagner’s “Tristan Und Isolde” (performed here by Carlos Ludwig Kleiber) is evidently (from Ken’s commentary in the Journey Through The Text of A Course In Miracles) another of his favorites.

Generalizing: Making all illusions – including years – the same

time is all the same - (calendar icons)

CA Brooks and Bruce Rawles talked (on January 9, 2015) on her weekly ACIM internet radio program on 12Radio about a fundamental ACIM concept: generalization. If we keep hanging on to expectations that the next year, job, relationship, health regimen, movie, meal, house, purchase, conquest or win is going to truly satisfy us – to ‘make’ us happy in any sustainable way, we’re just asking for disappointment. However, we aren’t asked to change our behavior; just watch ego mind – catch it in the act – during it’s incessant shenanigans – and decide NOT to condemn ourselves for using such tactics as a means for projecting and avoiding the unconscious, unfounded guilt we all don’t want to look at. Here’s a link to more details and the audio recording of that conversation.

Susan Dugan workshops

For anyone in the Denver, Colorado or Portland, Oregon areas, ACIM teacher Susan Dugan is giving a workshop in 2015 entitled “The Parent-Child Relationship: Transcending Guilt, Blame, and Need ” on Feb. 21 and March 28, respectively; here are details on her Classes/Events page. She also has an ongoing class on Tuesday evenings at Rocky Mountain Miracle Center (RMMC) in Denver; all highly recommended, as are her blog, and books, Forgiveness Offers Everything I Want, and Extraordinary Ordinary Forgiveness.

Upcoming Interviews / Webcasts / Videos / Meetings / Conferences / Presentations/ Classes / Resources

  • CA Brooks conversation about generalizing and making all illusions the same (see details above)
  • Podcast series (in development, underway; stay tuned!)
  • There is a backlog of projects and updates for the ACIMblog website forthcoming; this month was particularly busy, so please forgive the dearth of ‘new’ content until next month; meanwhile there is MORE than plenty to assist via resources such as the daily workbook lessons, FACIM FAQ, FACIM’s website, and numerous other resources that may be helpful.

ACIM Resources, Events, Musings – your suggestions and contributions invited!

Please contact us to share what YOU would like to see here, any suggestions for improvements, etc. If you have anything ACIM-related that you’d like to share, please send (or send a link) for consideration. This site is (among other things) a venue for conversations, so I eagerly encourage and await more contributions from kindred students of our Shared Teacher of forgiveness and kindness. It’s fun to share our universal interests online; visit ACIMblog pages on FaceBook FaceBook (my personal FB page, which is considerably ACIM-related), Twitter and YouTube. If you aren’t already receiving this automatically in your email, you can subscribe here for free and get daily updates (of any posts made the prior day) via the “post updates by email” Subscribe button on every page. Eternal smilezenhugs to all! 🙂 ACIMblog star image

Generalizing: Making all illusions – including years – the same

time is all the same - (calendar icons)

CA Brooks and Bruce Rawles talked (on January 9, 2015) on her weekly ACIM internet radio program on 12Radio about a fundamental ACIM concept: generalization. If we keep hanging on to expectations that the next year, job, relationship, health regimen, movie, meal, house, purchase, conquest or win is going to truly satisfy us – to ‘make’ us happy in any sustainable way, we’re just asking for disappointment. However, we aren’t asked to change our behavior; just watch ego mind – catch it in the act – during it’s incessant shenanigans – and decide NOT to condemn ourselves for using such tactics as a means for projecting and avoiding the unconscious, unfounded guilt we all don’t want to look at. 🙂

Here are some prior audio conversations with CA Brooks and Bruce Rawles (and related articles) about A Course in Miracles:

Specialness: Well, isn’t that special! (recorded 14 Nov. 2014)

CA Brooks interview – Level Confusion (recorded 3 Oct. 2014)

Metaphysical Movie Metaphors: Wizard of Oz (recorded 12 Sep. 2014)

CA Brooks interview – Double Shield of Oblivion (recorded 22 Aug. 2014)

December 2014 ACIMblog bulletin

Make this year different … by making it all the same

Here is a video from Ken Wapnick (New Year’s message) that is a timeless reminder that we can see all seemingly different aspects of the dream we’ve projected as the same forgivable illusion. It was just over a year ago that he appeared (in form) to leave us, yet his message lives on, undimmed by the shifting of illusion. Thank you, Ken!

Christmas as the End of Sacrifice – a conversation with Susan Dugan

Susan Dugan and Bruce Rawles converse about “Christmas as the End of Sacrifice” from the last section (11) from Chapter 15 in the text of A Course In Miracles; lots of substantial material in this section for us to ponder and apply, and appropriate any time of year!

New ACIMblog Podcast Series

Details will be forthcoming … soon! 🙂

Gary Renard and Gene Bogart podcast #53

There’s a new Podcast with Gary Renard and Gene Bogart – Episode 53 now available.

Recovering Bliss Ninny Calendar - cover image

Recovering Bliss-ninny calendar – new for 2015

Calling all Recovering Bliss-Ninnys! Here is a new (2015) calendar for students of A Course In Miracles (ACIM) that want reminders of the thought system we’re here to undo, featuring a few of the more challenging quotes from ACIM with recent photographs by Bruce Rawles, editor of ACIMblog.com. Kenneth Wapnick said: “A bliss-ninny doesn’t want to look at guilt or what the world is really like. A person will say, oh, the Course is changing my life, it’s going to change the world without really looking at the guilt the Course is trying to undo. A bliss-ninny does not have a proper understanding or respect for the ego in terms of how ugly it can be and how attracted to it we are. If you don’t look at guilt, everything you do with this Course is going to be guided by that decision and you will totally misunderstand what the Course is saying.” While most students of ACIM probably aren’t in the ‘clinically pathological bliss-ninny’ category (grin) we all have our favorite idols of specialness in the world that we think will make us happy. So, even if you only have a few residual ‘special projects’ to repair this surreal holodeck with the intent of turning the dream into your bliss factory, you might find the quotes on the calendar helpful. If you stand back far enough, you can always just look at the photos when the resistance is high to letting the meaning of the quotes sink in directly, letting them work subliminally. 🙂

All the quotes from the Recovering Bliss-ninny calendar are in the November 2014 ACIMblog bulletin.

FACIM offers streaming classes starting January 2015

The Foundation for A Course In Miracles (FACIM) will begin offering their academy classes via streaming video, starting January! This will greatly expand access who may not find it convenient to attend the sessions in person in Temecula, California. Kudos to FACIM for adding this additional online venue for these superb programs!

Journey Through the Text available now

Hooray! The long-awaited “Journey Through the Text of A Course In Miracles” (JTTT) by Kenneth Wapnick is now available through the FACIM.org website. I’ve been reading excerpts posted on FaceBook by fellow students that already have copies and have just started reading it!

The Altar – An Article by Dave Van Dyke

How willing are we to proceed to “the end of our insistence that reality must be a certain way”? Another helpful article by contributor, Dave Van Dyke.

Susan Dugan workshops

For anyone in the Denver, Colorado or Portland, Oregon areas, ACIM teacher Susan Dugan is giving a workshop in 2015 entitled “The Parent-Child Relationship: Transcending Guilt, Blame, and Need ” on Feb. 21 and March 28, respectively; here are details on her Classes/Events page. She also has an ongoing class on Tuesday evenings at Rocky Mountain Miracle Center (RMMC) in Denver; all highly recommended, as are her blog, and books, Forgiveness Offers Everything I Want, and Extraordinary Ordinary Forgiveness.

Well, isn’t that special! Specialness – 12Radio conversation with CA Brooks

CA Brooks and Bruce Rawles had another conversation on her excellent weekly 12Radio show about ACIM, this one on Specialness. In this conversation, we talk about special love, special hate, and how we make everything special! This ubiquitous ego tactic is designed to keep us mindlessly fixated on specific idols of all kinds. We refer to quotes such as “Complete abstraction is the natural condition of the mind” from Lesson 161 of the ACIM WorkBook, and how specifics … and specialness are intentional diversions from restoring our minds to this peaceful state which is our true nature. Specialness is an important theme in A Course In Miracles; here are numerous articles about it on the Foundation for A Course In Miracles website.

MiracleShare 2014 Conference

Virtual ACIM conference … still available online!

Please join me and Amy TorresDr. Bob RosenthalBritney Shawley, Carrie TriffetCheryl FordCorrine ZupkoCraig VillarrubiaDanielle Boonstra, David FishmanDavid HoffmeisterEarl “Raj” PurdyGabrielle BernsteinJoe WolfeJohn Mark StroudJon Mundy, Kandace JonesKenneth BokLisa NatoliLorri CoburnMaria FelipeMaureen MuldoonMyron JonesNouk SanchezSusan Dugan, and Tony Ponticello for the first MiracleShare.org 2014 Virtual Conference. It was held on October 17-19, 2014, but it will be available for a full year after those dates, so you haven’t ‘missed it’ if you still want to watch and hear the entire 3 days … until Oct. 2015! Here is a list of speakers, details about the virtual conference, and a link to register for the event. The theme of this first virtual conference is “Healing the Mind through ACIM.” My presentation was: “Lowering our shields of oblivion: Following our Inner Kindness Teacher beyond the imagined need for defenses back to the Peace of Perfect Oneness we never left.” Here are some quotes from the speakers, in a slide show format. I hope you can join us; the material is always applicable! This was a wonderful opportunity for the global ACIM community to share insights, support and humor. I had the pleasure of watching all the presentations/interviews and listening to all the Q&A sessions, and enjoyed them all; I plan to re-watch and re-listen to them all again soon. 🙂

Holiday Peace Applicable Throughout the year … in film and song

If you haven’t heard it, check out the song Christmas in the Trenches – written and performed by John McCutcheon and a related film, Joyeux Noel, both about declaring a cease fire when we realize that we share the same true interests, as symbolized by this historical lull in world war insanity. Happy holidays and beyond, all!

Inner Peace column edited by ACIMblog contributor Sally McKirgan

Here is the initial article about Inner Peace in 2008 which initiated the Inner Peace column in the Ashland (Oregon) Daily Tidings. This series has enjoyed contributions by numerous ACIM students in the Oregon’s Rogue Valley area and beyond.

Upcoming Interviews / Webcasts / Videos / Meetings / Conferences / Presentations/ Classes / Resources

  • CA Brooks interview about special love and special hate relationships (see details above)
  • The Altar – An Article by Dave Van Dyke (see details above)
  • Recovering Bliss-Ninny calendar for 2015 (see details above)

ACIM Resources, Events, Musings – your suggestions and contributions invited!

Please contact us to share what YOU would like to see here, any suggestions for improvements, etc. If you have anything ACIM-related that you’d like to share, please send (or send a link) for consideration. This site is (among other things) a venue for conversations, so I eagerly encourage and await more contributions from kindred students of our Shared Teacher of forgiveness and kindness. It’s fun to share our universal interests online; visit ACIMblog pages on FaceBook FaceBook (my personal FB page, which is considerably ACIM-related), Twitter and YouTube. If you aren’t already receiving this automatically in your email, you can subscribe here for free and get daily updates (of any posts made the prior day) via the “post updates by email” Subscribe button on every page. Eternal smilezenhugs to all! 🙂 ACIMblog star image