June 2015 ACIMblog bulletin

Workshop: Navigating the Dream with Forgiveness: Our Inner Kindness Teacher’s Dashboard – Sunday August 9, 2015 at RMMC

There are abundant metaphors all around us (including transportation gizmology) that our Inner Kindness Teacher can use to help us mindfully keep on course in our forgiveness classroom. This workshop will explore some of these. 🙂

Ideas In Egos Thought System Are More Clueless Than They Appear

Workshop highlights/topics covered:

  • Our Unconscious Mind’s Classroom as a Windshield/Dashboard/Console View of the dream
  • Helpful reminders to assist in putting feedback in a right-minded perspective
  • Turning the Tables on Ego’s Interpretations – Using Our Inner Kindness Teacher’s Translations
  • Mindfully deciding against self-judgment (which includes judging ‘others’); HS: Kindly GPS
  • Utilizing All Indicators/Feedback/Symbols/Metaphors as Thought System/Course Correction help
  • The Windshield (Outer Shield of Oblivion) of physical form/propaganda
  • Ego’s Default Dashboard (Inner Shield of Oblivion) of victimhood/guilt/blame/sin/fear
  • Looking with Inclusion/Shared Interests to Bypass Ego’s Polarizing Feedback filtering/distortion
  • Choosing against the insanity of conflicting destinations; remembering the home we never left
  • Revealing the Master Switch; Overcoming our Resistance to Unchanging Love/Perfect Peace

Workshop Description: In addition to the topics noted above, the workshop will provide related quotes from ACIM, along with amusing audio-visual memory aids to remind us to not take our journey through the dream quite so seriously, a.k.a. smiling gently at ego’s mis-interpretation more and more frequently.

After-class printed workshop handouts will allow for introspective journaling of one’s personal (special) mental experiences/situations/values/investments to ‘peel off the tape’ covering ego’s dashboard ‘idiot lights’, helping us see that the alarming indicators we were previously afraid to look at disappear in the light of gentle examination with our Inner Kindness Teacher a.k.a Holy Spirit.

Workshop Title: Navigating the Dream with Forgiveness: Our Inner Kindness Teacher’s Dashboard Translations
Facilitator:
 Bruce Rawles
Date: Sunday, August 9, 2015
Time: 1-4 PM
Location: Rocky Mountain Miracle Center Library
Cost: $25
Contact Bruce to register or for more details.

Bruce Rawles

Bruce Rawles


There is no cruelty in God and none in me: a Conversation about Workbook Lesson 170

In this audio programCA Brooks and Bruce Rawles converse about Workbook Lesson 170: There is no cruelty in God and none in me. This is another segment of CA’s weekly ACIM internet radio program on 12Radio. While not a popular topic, it is one of many challenging-but-so-rewarding aspects of looking at ego’s craziness – without condemnation – so that we can ultimately restore our mind to the love that awaits us beyond ego’s murderous thought system. In fact, when we do NOT take it’s interpretation … of anything and everything … seriously, that’s when we can afford to see the real humor (which we give examples of from ACIM) in the author’s infinitely kind-hearted lampooning of the ‘tiny mad idea’ we’ve apparently all invested in! 🙂


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

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

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

The Altar – by Dave Van Dyke

Revised Jan 5th, 2015

(Note: In this article I am using the words “Holy Spirit”, “GodSelf”, “Real Self” and “Self” interchangeably.  They all mean the Holy Self that was given to us by God when we thought we left Heaven.  In Reality, we are this Self, but we do not identify with it.  We identify with our ego…the Self we made, which we are all finding out is not so much fun!)

The Altar is a place where we and our Self meet.  Ultimately it is a place of wonderfully quiet, restful, fulfilling, communion but our initial reasons for coming to the altar are probably because we are in turmoil.  It is an intimate and sacred place within our heart where we have dropped all of our defenses in recognition that we need a better way to see, and that we do not know what that way is.  The Altar, this meeting place, becomes apparent to us once we have said: “I can no longer tolerate the thoughts and feelings that are bringing me pain and insanity. I MUST find a way to have Peace and I do not know how to find it”. As I said; ultimately it is a place of peace but we may not initially experience this.

Our willingness to be led is greatest when we are in pain. In this respect pain can actually be a turning point for us. Our society judges pain as “a bad thing”, but it is usually the very thing that forces us to seek a new way to look at things. Pain is the indication that we are going against our own true nature (Love).  It is not a punishment in any respect.  It is like an indicator light on the dashboard of your car telling you that something is wrong!  Pain creates a willingness to let go of our ideas in recognition that “our way isn’t working any more”.  This willingness is a Holy place because it contains the hope of healing.

So the “Altar” is really a willingness, a trusting, and a surrender.  This is a place where we have come to the end of our insistence that our reality must be a certain way.  Many times our misery is that we have given illusion the status of Truth and we therefore see our problem as unchangeable.  We need the Truth to shine into our mind to reveal that our illusions are NOT true.  The Holy Spirit, our Self that was created by God, WANTS us to be free so why not surrender to the Mind/Heart/Presence that is able to affect positive change?  There is nothing beyond God’s power to heal. NOTHING.  It is helpful to remember this.

Our ideas, our way of seeing things shows us nothing but turmoil and despair, so what do we have to lose by asking for help?  We need Vision beyond our Self to show us the way out of despair.  The Holy Spirit gives what It is, which is Peace and Love.  By choosing to trust His Guidance, and joining with His Love our mind begins to let go of ego illusions as we feel the deep kindness of His Presence.

As ACIM says; “The concept of yourself that now you hold would guarantee your function here remain forever unaccomplished and undone.  And thus it dooms you to a bitter sense of deep depression and futility.  Yet it need not be fixed unless you choose to hold it past the hope of change and keep it static and concealed within your mind.

The Holy Spirit is a Presence we can learn to visit frequently and gain great Peace.  It feels like “us” only larger, deeper, and more encompassing.  It may take a while but eventually we begin to recognize that this Presence is our own REAL Self! It gently untangles our confusion and reveals the Truth, which puts us in touch with our own Wholeness.  It simultaneously reveals what our false beliefs are and WHY they are false. This makes us calmer, more stable, and Whole.  The more we trust our Help, the more we will recognize that the things that caused us fear and pain had no real substance.

It is very comforting to rest and abide in our own Holiness (Whole – I – ness) and we can carry this sense of wholeness back into our world and share the Presence of this Holiness with everyone.  We are really just extending the Kindness and Presence of our own Holy Spirit that we encounter when we are in the communion with our Self.  All of us are fighting a hard battle and this world needs kindness, forgiveness, Peace and rest.

As we join with and accept our Real Self, we begin to feel a wonderful companionship; one that we feel to be present with us always.  This companionship goes beyond the “comfort” we feel when surrounded by other “bodies” because the ego can be lonely, even in a crowd.  The companionship I’m talking about even goes beyond the closeness we feel toward a very good friend, although it is much like that. The awareness of our Self as our companion is like having a closeness with the best, best, best friend you ever had, and yet it is not a special relationship.  There are no expectations for it (or us) to fulfill.  There is only an unconditional, abiding acceptance that is very deep and very quiet.  Simultaneously we know that there is nothing we could do for which we would be judged.  We are part of something bigger than ourselves and yet it IS our Self.

As we trust on an even deeper level we will experience the forgiveness of our past.  Our personal history will seem to be re-written so that we feel free and at Peace as we see ourselves through the non-judgmental eyes of our GodSelf, or Holy Spirit – whatever you want to call it.

This all sounds very esoteric and perhaps you think it is impossible to “achieve” but there is no achievement involved.  The only “achievement” falls on the efforts of the Holy Spirit because it is by the efforts of the Holy Spirit that we will make it Home. All it requires is two things:  1) For us to surrender to our own pain…just admit that we can no longer tolerate the pain we feel and 2) To Trust a Power bigger than “you” that CAN accomplish it. That’s all. The more we bring our pain to the Altar of trust, the more we will recognize that we are slowly, almost imperceptibly being changed.  The beliefs that caused the pain in the first place ARE being healed.  The Holy Spirit heals us slowly, steadily, and gently, and although there will probably be some discomfort, it will be leading us toward the light instead of away from it.  ACIM reminds us not to attempt to judge whether we are advancing toward the truth because an advance does not always “feel good”, especially in the beginning.  But as we continue to trust this Power and Love, the entire process becomes smoother, calmer, and happier.

My experience is that once I have found that my willingness to trust another Guide brings me comfort, I automatically return to the Presence of my Self.  What calls me back is the pain I encounter when I am unconsciously believing my old ideas again.  I then return to the comfort of the meeting place, the altar within me, where my Self reassures me that the Promise of healing is real.  As ACIM says; “How likely is it that God would fail?” Each time I return to the Presence within my awareness of my Real Nature is reinforced.  The next time I find myself in pain, it is less than the previous time.  This cycle continues in an upward direction until my old ideas have been replaced by the Truth, which is a joyful experience.

There is a principle in physics that demonstrates what is occurring in our “meeting with our Self”.  Picture our Self (our Holy Spirit – whatever you want to call it) as a giant magnet and then picture ourselves (our limited concept of what we are – our ego) as a piece of iron.  When the piece of iron sits near the magnet its molecules begin to align with the magnetic field of the magnet and soon the iron becomes magnetized.  It acquires the same properties as the magnet.

The same happens when we spend time in the Presence of the Love of our Self.  We acquire the same “properties” as our Self, our Holy Spirit.  As the awareness of Love permeates us, our own ideas of “what we are” begin to change.  Slowly, our self-created identity begins to align with God’s idea of what we are – our Real Self.  It becomes more apparent that our fears are not real.  This does not happen overnight but we are promised that it will happen. My experience is that God is not a liar.

We will undoubtedly have many encounters with our beliefs and fears as this process unfolds but once we know “where” to go to find reassurance, we WILL return to that place (provided we don’t begin to insist that we know our own way).  Our egos may kick up quite a fuss in this process but the more time we spend in the Presence and comfort of healing, the clearer it will be to us that Peace and healing is absolutely possible. By standing in the comfort of our Self, we will be able to let go of the ego, not believing its lies about who we are, affected less and less by the insanity and fear we previously believed were true.
To summarize; this process starts by admitting to ourselves that we can no longer tolerate our own pain and that we must have Peace.  The next step is to take that pain to the only place it can truly be healed…to God, the Holy Spirit, our Self, our GodSelf, whatever we want to call it.  Recognize that our own ideas, concepts, beliefs, have not been able to give us the Peace we need.  Trust that the Kindness of God WANTS to give us what we perceive to be lacking.  The results may start slowly and no time table can be given as to when to expect results but, depending on the intensity of our surrender and desire, positive change has no choice but to occur.  Our GodSelf is not deaf – It can hear us perfectly each time we ask for help and It cannot fail.

David VanDyke

Two secrets the ego doesn’t want you to know – Dave Van Dyke

I am a long-time student of Truth having started back in the 70’s.  I have struggled (as we all have) with finding and applying the Truth in order to free myself from my ego mind, it’s fears, it’s constricting and self-defeating beliefs, and the general sense that I will never be anything but a small limited creature, doomed to die before I have any real understanding of what or who I am.

In my journey it seems that I struggled greatly with my “feelings,” which seemed to toss me around like a wet rag.  When spiritual teachers taught the idea “It’s all about watching your thoughts”, I could never make that WORK.  I would practice watching my thoughts and surrender them when they began to contain Self-defeating ideas and still find myself in feelings of depression or fear.  Eventually I could see that it was beliefs that unconsciously directed our thinking toward ideas that supported the beliefs.  And even later I saw that it is our self-concept that engenders specific beliefs that are in support of our self-concept.  Once beliefs become a part of my idea of “who I am”, it becomes threatening to try to remove them because it feels like we are trying to tear out a chunk of “me”.  This then becomes a job for the Holy Spirit, which by surrendering to this larger Self, is able to remove our false beliefs while giving us a deeper sense of being loved (although this doesn’t necessarily happen quickly or completely without fear) .  In this way it is easier (not “easy” but “easier“) to face our fears without cataclysm.  While this is helpful, there was still a piece of the puzzle I did not have.  The question remained; HOW do I do this?  What METHOD or technique do I use to become the awareness that my Teachers always talked about?  While Trusting and surrendering to our Holy Spirit was very helpful I have recently learned of two things that are huge.

If they are not totally relevant to the place you find yourself, that’s ok.  They probably will be later on.  At least take these ideas in and consider them;

1)  REAL Forgiveness frees us to remember our original identity instead of struggling to become it.  This identity (Love) does not struggle with thoughts or feelings or beliefs because it already knows its identity.  It does not need to struggle to replace “old thought habits” or develop new ones because it knows it is not an ego.  Instead of trying to overcome fear it simply sees fear as false and gently looks right through it because it has a deep certainty of what it IS. Recently I have been reading Tom Carpenter‘s book; “The Miracle of Real Forgiveness” and it has been very helpful in moving beyond an intellectual understanding of Forgiveness and really living it.  Our real identity will be seen as we remove the blocks to Love by forgiving.  Then, instead of feeling like we are trying to BECOME Love, we will know ourselves AS Love.

2)  We must walk this path toward freedom with the idea that our purpose is to join WITH our brothers, not to find enlightenment for ourselves alone. We are awakening together. In “The Holy Spirit’s Interpretation of the New Testament” by Regina Dawn Akers is this statement: “When one forgets the one purpose of oneness and communion, you have forgotten who you are.”  Having a “WE” perspective instead of a “ME” perspective automatically unifies us with a larger Self.  One then begins to feel a desire to unify instead of judging.

I highly recommend Tom Carpenter‘s book for developing both of these ideas beyond mere concepts and making you aware of the beautiful Self living in your heart.

Forgiving helps us to remember our Real Identity, which is Love.  As we slowly begin to wake up and remember that we ARE Love, we begin to regard the thoughts of the ego with less credibility. Thoughts which used to have great sway over our feelings about our self begin to fade because Love sees right through them.  It is literally unaffected by the old ideas (thoughts) and beliefs of our self-concept (ego). This does not happen overnight but with determination, faith, and trust, our inner Guide will bring us to that place.  In fact THAT is it’s job and it is VERY GOOD at what it does!

Love, our real identity, does not have any roots in a “self-concept”.  Whether we thought we were flawed, fragile, grandiose, intelligent, stupid, or “whatever”, those descriptions of us are unimportant.  They don’t mean anything. Yet they seem to mean EVERYTHING while we live within the self-concept.  These ideas about the “self” create it’s entire world.  What ever ideas the ego holds as true, it will see these ideas as Truth and project them into the physical world.  They will drive it’s world and do so in a chaotic fashion because they have no anchor in Truth and because of this, there will be no peace to be found.

One of the most basic feelings and ideas the ego holds about itself is that it is “flawed” at a fundamental level, that “there is something wrong with me”.  If you have feelings that you are not complete (and we all do) then you are experiencing this idea.  The ego will then seek to complete itself by it’s own means, which can manifest in a myriad of avenues.  Acquiring more possessions, more education, a special status of some kind, a special relationship, anything that:   1) makes “me” special and   2) is an attempt to “fix” the underlying sense of incompleteness.  Eventually we all come to see that these attempts do not fix the problem.  In fact, since these actions are born out of a sense of separateness they may actually amplify the idea that we are alone and leave us with MORE emptiness.

Because of what the ego is (an attempt to make a self that is independent from wholeness) it will always feel incomplete.  The practice of forgiveness as well as that of Faith and Trust in our Guide will eventually return us to the peaceful awareness of our completeness.  Real Forgiveness and the purpose of joining are what allow us to stop TRYING to be a spiritual being. Again I refer to the statement up above: “When one forgets the one purpose of oneness and communion, you have forgotten who you are”.  We cannot find enlightenment by ourselves or for ourselves alone.  We all try and strive and push to become a spiritual being…free of our limitations. Ultimately we will make progress but the real progress comes by the willingness to include everyone in our journey toward freedom.  As we become more inclusive and practice (without “striving”), forgiveness, we begin to identify with Love, which removes the aspect of separation from what we ARE, which is Love.

An important insight for me personally was this; Our torment does not come only from our thoughts. Our overall self-concept finds certain ideas (thoughts) more credible than others and finds them easier to “energize” (by believing in them) because we identify with those thoughts. For example, if I believe I am “a dummy” and someone comes along and tells me to my face “you’re stupid”, it’s likely I will energize that idea by believing it is true.  The evidence of this will be that I feel hurt or angry.  Thought after thought, belief after belief, will arise to be painful (or, for positive ego thoughts,  a source of temporary happiness) when we believe that we are separate from God and each other…when we believe we are only our ego.  By practicing forgiveness we begin to identify with a greater, forgotten, part of ourselves that is NOT SUBJECT TO ideas and beliefs based in limitation and separateness.  This begins to eliminate the struggle we experience on the spiritual path because Oneness transcends the effort of trying to “become”.

Having said that, there is the unpleasant aspect of “refinement”.  As we move toward freedom, our self-concept will rebel, become afraid, and vomit some really unpleasant stuff into our awareness.  These things come up into our conscious awareness because we have “requested” healing through our willingness to be healed.  It is only when we are consciously aware of them that the Holy Spirit can begin to eliminate them.  This means we must “feel” them, which is usually unpleasant and can be scary.  Anchor yourself in the knowledge that the Holy Spirit/God/the GodSelf knows exactly what it is doing and is on your side. He will succeed.  And as Jesus said; “I will never leave you comfortless”.  These things pass because, as real as they seem, they do not have an eternal reality.  After the rainstorm comes the rainbow. We are then closer to realizing the purpose of our journey here on Earth.

David VanDyke

October 2013 ACIMblog bulletin

ACIMblog bulletin for October 2013:

Love Has Forgotten No One - The Answer To Life - by Gary R. Renard

Love Has Forgotten No One – Gary Renard’s new book

The long-awaited 3rd book by Gary Renard, Love Has Forgotten No One, is available on Kindle and in paperback. It was well worth the wait! If you haven’t already read Gary’s first two books, I recommend reading (or re-reading) them first, since the third book builds on the foundation of pure non-dualistic thought that was established in the first two books. If you’re looking for something ‘new and different’ (from the other 2 books), you (we’re talking ‘individual’ you, here) might be disappointed, but for the Self we really are, it’s a glorious presentation of the ideas take us home from the dream we never really entered. Hooray for inspired repetition – the content is the same brilliance, although the form is now in the context of Gary’s more recent experience and numerous fascinating connections – from our friends Gary, Arten and Pursah! 🙂
Here’s a short review by fellow ACIM enthusiast of Gary’s work ‘Giddyup Mikey’ Mike Lemieux.

Sep 2013 LightHouse

The Sep. 2013 edition of FACIM‘s quarterly bulletin, The Lighthouse, if you haven’t already read it, is now available here. Always loaded with superb insights and highly recommended! This edition’s feature article by Ken Wapnick is entitled: “THE TREACHERY OF IMAGES”—Part I: Confusing Symbols with Source, Form with Content” … Here is a short excerpt:

“Herein lies the treachery of images or symbols, for they seem to be what they are not, seducing us into believing that an illusion (really, an hallucination) is actually true and is out there to be perceived. And so the purpose of the world: “Thus were specifics made” (W-pI.161.3:1). This leaves us as the “face of innocence” that suffers at the hands of people and events beyond our control.”

Doug Sparks presentation and workshop at Rocky Mountain Miracle Center

Doug Sparks gave a morning presentation and workshop at RMMC on October 13, 2013; I’ll have the audio from both of these (and others in my recording backlog) uploaded here soon; both excellent. It’s always a joy to attend talks given by this long-time student of Ken Wapnick, as he shares – with warm and insight – the depth of the importance of being kindly mindful as we apply our forgiveness lessons. Doug is giving a workshop in Boulder, Colorado, entitled “Hope Springs External – The Ego’s Favorite Ploy” on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013 from 10AM-4PM; contact Nieca Sparks at 303-570-7737 for details and registration.

Daily post updates

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ACIM-related articles, websites and blogs of interest

Here’s a new in-depth article entitled “Moving from fear into Real Peace” by Dave Van Dyke about going beyond the ‘dark night of the soul’ (ego’s forte) to the enduring comfort we all know awaits us, despite our resistance. Dave shares a genuine, heart-felt and ‘right on’ essay with us. It fits perfectly with one of my favorite sections about going past the “dark night of the soul” in Chap. 31, section IV (The Real Alternative) to seeing ALL of Spirit in everyone and everything… I’m paraphrasing, but that’s what I get from it … Looking past ego’s desolate façade – with help from our Inner Kindness Teacher – to the unchanging beauty and Love within All!

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

Online ACIM study groups and presentations

There are several ongoing ACIM Hangout study groups and meetings; here’s a link to the ACIMExplained YouTube Channel (which has LOTS of wonderful videos) including regular interviews, presentations and online study group meetings. Enjoy, and join in if you feel inspired to share in the fun. Check back regularly on the calendar of upcoming online ACIM Hangouts for new events to participate ‘live’ in, and/or watch later. Here’s a how-to page with best practices for participating in these Google+ Hangouts.

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

Please contact me 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.

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Moving from fear into Real Peace – Dave Van Dyke

Moving from fear into Real Peace.

This is written especially for the person who has given up, who is desperate and feels that there may actually be no possibility for them to be healed from fear or some other issue.  I cannot account for why some of us have great, almost debilitating, obstacles to overcome and others seem not to.  My personal belief is (although I have no way to verify this) is that everyone has, or will have, their big battles.  I also believe that this life is probably just one of many that we live as an overall journey back to the awareness of God as our Creator.  It may be that, just like the prodigal son in the bible, we have wandered away from Home and now we have decided to return. Our journey back can require a lot of mental/emotional healing.  If we seem to have “more than our share” of grief, problems, or emotional turmoil, that doesn’t mean that “God hates us” or that we are unworthy in His eyes.  It is impossible to say why our situations are what they are and it is pointless to judge them.  The only thing that is important is that it IS possible to be healed and God’s Love will get you there.  The only prerequisites are that you have decided you can’t do it by yourself and that there is a power greater than you that can and will if you stick with it.

A few things to clarify.

A definition of God.  When I use the word God, I mean; a Loving Spirit that heals and responds to the sincere requests of our heart.  There is no power greater than that of the Creator.  There is also no Love greater than that of the Creator.  There is no problem so “complicated” or “large” that God wouldn’t be able to solve it. God is not stupid!  God is the best place to bring your problems if you really want them solved.

God is genderless.  This is true because Love (which is what God IS) is neither male nor female.  Having said that, I have referred to God as a “Him” and in some cases “Father”.  This is largely because of my own sense of connection with God.  I am sure that God does not care how we address “Him”.  God responds to the sincere request of your heart.  I promise you that however you address God your requests for healing will be heard and respected.

This writing contains my experience of healing and the “trail of bread crumbs” that got me there – faith and trust being the primary bread crumbs.  This information is not “theory”.  It is my direct experience.  It WORKED for me.  If I had been able to read this article when I was struggling with fear it would have helped immensely.  With that in mind, I hope my experience and the knowledge I gained from it will benefit someone else.

Our paths are as individual as we are.  If these ideas don’t resonate with you, that’s ok.  This essay is written from one person’s experience and, although my way worked for me, I am not trying to say that “I have THE way”.  I have A way that works for me and that “way” is Trust and Faith.  Some people cannot relate to the idea of a Creator or a power greater than themselves that is benevolent.  In that case this essay may not be of use to them.

I have tried to keep this writing free of a lot of “concepts” because it is for a broad-based audience. It may not appear to be technically correct to those steeped in the vocabulary of the Course in Miracles (ACIM), or the Holy Spirit’s interpretation of the New Testament (NTI) and there is a reason: When a person experiences strong fear they need to hear the Heart of God as well as their own heart – NOT a lot of new concepts.  God responds to the call from your heart and does not care about anything else.

This writing is not about a specific fear like the “fear of paper clips” for example.  It is about fear in a general sense.  The reason it is written this way is because a person may not know exactly what it IS that they are afraid of.  They only know that they experience fear.  The good news is that you do NOT have to know what your fear is in order for it to be healed.  God knows exactly what the fear is and exactly how to heal it.  You do not need to invest years in self-examination to find out the reason for experiencing fear.  You only need to know that you can’t live with it anymore and then turn it over to a loving power greater than yourself for healing.

All fear is the basic idea that there is something that has greater power over us then we have over ourselves.  In that respect all fears are the same.  God addresses the root cause of all fear by healing the false idea that there is anything outside of us with a greater power than God.  Since all fear works the same way God heals it in one way; through the awareness of His Love.

Obviously this writing has nothing to do with “getting that new sports car that I want so badly” or anything of that sort.  This article is about healing the inner being.  If our mind is focused primarily on physical “wants”, then this article will be of little use to us.

Section I – A story of my experience

When I first knew that my fear was out of control I wondered how on Earth I could ever be healed.  The amount of fear I was experiencing didn’t make any sense to me.  Why was this happening?  There didn’t seem to be any answer.  I felt very lost, afraid, and alone. Did I say “very”?  I meant “EXTREMELY”!  At its worst point my days were spent in a sense of desperation and an aching sense of loneliness.  I would have several anxiety attacks during the day. I could barely function normally. Occasionally I would have to go for walks early in the morning (before sunrise) because the fear was so bad I could not sleep.  There wasn’t a glimmer of hope on the horizon and I didn’t even feel like I was alive.  On a GOOD day I would do the chores that needed to be done having no spark of life for anything else.  I knew that things had to change and change drastically but I didn’t know how I would ever make that happen.  I tried figuring out what the fear was about, I asked spiritual teachers, I looked through all kinds of books and in the end, I still had fear that was destroying my ability to have any kind of happiness or even sanity.  When I came to the end of my searching I felt severe and desperate despair because I felt that there would never be ANYTHING that would be able to help me.

Then one day I found an old book that my Grandmother had kept on her shelf called “God’s Psychiatry”.  I opened it up and read something that started me on my path of healing.  Right in the front of the book was the 23rd Psalm.  I read its’ comforting words.  At the end of those words was a question by the author.  It said (I’m paraphrasing), “do the words of this Psalm seem like the words of an angry God?  Anyone with any sensitivity at all can see the gentleness and kindness apparent in these words.  God is gentle and loving.  Our concept of an angry, jealous, vengeful, or otherwise dysfunctional God is a false concept.”

I contemplated the concept of a “gentle, loving, God”.  I had always been raised with spiritual teachings that emphasized the power of the mind and the power of one’s thoughts in the mind.  In my arrogance I felt that relying on God was for those who were weak.  But I was feeling rather weak myself during that time and my heart ached for kindness.  I had just finished a book named “You Don’t Have To Be Perfect“, by a couple of authors in New York.  Even though I had just read the words of the 23rd Psalm, it was my intention to call these authors in New York.  I made up my mind that I would call them the following morning.  At that point it was late in the evening and I began to walk upstairs so that I could go to bed.  About halfway up the staircase a thought popped into my mind.  The thought was: if you are going to trust two people, why don’t you trust the Creator of the Universe? There were no trumpets or angels that came with this thought.  It was simply a thought.  I sat on the edge of my bed that evening and considered this thought more deeply.  “Let me see, who do I want to trust?  Two people or the Creator of the Universe”.  I realized that I needed something that would work, really work!  I knew that if I talked to more people about my fear that there would probably be some kind of partial healing or partial understanding of the problem.  But intuitively I knew that I needed a COMPLETE healing.  I reasoned that a Creator is imbued with omnipotent power.  He wouldn’t deal in partial successes. Because of this it was logical to me that if I really wanted this fear to be healed there was only one choice to make and that was to trust God.
So, sitting on the edge of my bed that evening, I told God, whatever He was and wherever He might be, “Okay, Father.  I am going to trust you with this but please be gentle because I’m scared sh*tless.”

This started a process within me of healing…in the beginning it was very hard to feel that there was anything there TO trust.  Still, the Psalms were comforting to me because they seemed to say that the promises spoken of were real.  One day I began to have an episode of fear and I shut my eyes and just started repeating “God loves me” over and over.  To my surprise, the fear episode was not as strong as usual and I felt “something comforting” inside me.  This was the beginning of a direct experience of God’s Presence. I continued to use this technique and, slowly, the sense of a comforting Presence grew.

Some days it felt like I was getting a worse instead of better (especially in the beginning) while I was still learning how to trust something I couldn’t see.  It took a while but I realized that this was part of the healing process. What was happening was that the unconscious ideas, thoughts and feelings that caused fear were being brought to the surface because I had asked to be healed.  I was even more willing to have them healed since now I felt there was a Presence, a connection to God, that I could release them into.  These things would come up into my conscious awareness and, once they were there, they were able to be healed by God.  They cannot be healed until you are consciously aware of them.  What I have to tell you is that this process is not necessarily “pleasant”.  When these things come up into your conscious awareness you won’t necessarily want to feel them or to see them but there they are.  They can feel scary and you may feel that you are losing ground and reverting back into fear.  Do your best to continue to keep trusting, keep the faith.  What is happening is just part of the process and you need to keep that in mind.  God is accomplishing healing in a way that you cannot understand but your job is to trust that God knows what He is doing. When you first decide to put your trust in God, you may not have much trust but that’s ok.  If you had enough trust or faith to begin the process, you have enough to finish it.  In the beginning things may seem like a roller coaster ride (that is, a little unstable) until your trust strengthens.  As it begins to strengthen, things will calm down and continue to get more “steady”.  God will see to it that your trust DOES strengthen, don’t worry.  When the process feels “bad” or “fearful”, especially in the beginning, you may have the idea; “surrendering to God was the wrong thing to do”.  No!  It was the RIGHT thing to do.  Just keep on asking for help and cling TIGHTER to God.  It will get better!  The fact of the matter is, unless you want to have debilitating fear for the rest of your life, there is only one direction you can go; toward God and His Love. The way to move toward Him is by trusting.

Developing trust is kind of like dumping sand into a pool of water.  Say that the sand symbolizes faith and the water symbolizes our fear.  We dump a bucket full of sand (faith) into the pool of water (fear) and it seems to disappear completely.  We probably won’t feel a strong sense of faith right away.  So we keep dumping more sand in the water knowing that at some point it has to pay off.  It’s a law.  Finally a day comes where we can see a mound of sand just below the water’s surface.  We feel stronger, more stable, and more hopeful.  As we continue to dump sand and water it finally comes up over the surface and we experience the presence of the love of God.  This is an important milestone in our healing.

A good analogy
Picture a house that is built on a faulty foundation.  If the foundation sags in a certain place (this is symbolic of false ideas we have believed to be true), the walls that are built on top of it will be crooked and the builder, in this case you, will encounter problem after problem.  With crooked walls, doors and windows will not open and shut properly.  The list of problems goes on and on.  Eventually the builder may encounter so many problems that she or he realizes, “this just isn’t working! I’m going to have to tear this house down to the foundation!”  Once the foundation is fixed the house can be built properly, with much more ease and much stronger as well.  This is symbolic of the exact process that we undertake with God when we admit to ourselves that, “there must be a better way” as stated in A Course in Miracles.  Fortunately God is much gentler than a wrecking crew would be on an old building.  Still, the process can feel very uncomfortable at times but this only means that the old faulty parts of the building are being removed and they will be replaced by a greater comfort than we previously knew.  Be grateful that God is capable of healing you!  Be grateful God is doing the heavy lifting even when it doesn’t feel very good!  God is able to accomplish things that you would never be able to accomplish with your own efforts. The more trust you invest in God’s ability to heal you, the more you will realize that this really IS true!
This process does not happen overnight but, as with any change that is authentic, is built gradually through faith, patience, and determination.  It took me about a year and a half to come to the place where I could really trust the working of God within me.  The amount of trust you give God is returned multiplied many times in the form of a sense of kindness, assurance, and the awareness that the specific fear that you are struggling with is not real and never was.  This assurance is a hard thing to put in words because it is communicated as a sense of certainty to your heart by God.  It comes from a sense of companionship that is developed over time.  It is this sense of companionship that reveals the unreality of your fear.

Another analogy:
Picture a painful idea such as: “I’m not worth anything”.  The very first time we ever believed that idea it was painful…like getting a splinter.  But instead of removing the splinter, we left it in!  To remove the splinter it has to be exposed.  To heal the idea that “I’m not worth anything”; we have to allow God to bring the feelings of unworthiness to the surface, into our conscious awareness.   This is the only way that He can remove it and that is why it is so important to continue to trust.  This is usually a difficult time to find trust but just do the best you can.  God will amplify every ounce of faith you give him and use it to accomplish the task.  Keep on!  Your healing will come.  This is God’s Promise.
Ask yourself would you rather just leave the splinter in your finger?  If you don’t remove it, it will become infected and if you continue to ignore it, you may lose your finger.  Given the choices, a little temporary pain is worth it!  The good news is there is a Kind and Loving Doctor that is up to the challenge of healing us completely.

The Process:
We always want fear to go away immediately but what we really have to do is settle into the slower process of healing.  This requires that we accept our feelings and ask our Creator for help to “get us to the other side”.  In other words, we accept the journey of healing however long it is going to take.  After all, the important thing is to be healed, not to temporarily get out of the pain.  During times of intense fear or pain, try to find some reassuring reading material, take a walk, or do anything that will calm your mind and give you some peace.  Know that God is reasonably smart and probably scored very high on the SAT exams.  He knows what He is doing and it is his purpose to free you from your pain and fear.  In other words, He is on YOUR side!

In a nutshell, the process is to turn your pain or fear over to God.  God doesn’t have any attachment to what name we have given Him and, as the Course in Miracles says, will respond to the slightest invitation to heal you.

Quite simply the solution is to;

1)  Acknowledge that you are in pain and that you have not been able to help yourself.

2)  Know that God wants to help and is ABLE to help because God’s nature is Love and Kindness. In other words, He can only respond to your need with Respect, Love, and Kindness.

3)  Turn the problem over to God by trusting His ability and desire to heal you.

4)  Stick with it.  Keep on trusting.  This is just as important as all the steps above it!  God will speak to you in the EXACT way that you need it; the way that will make total sense to YOU.

Is the idea that God wants to heal us a projection of a fantasy onto God?  Absolutely not.  There really IS a caring force that wants to heal you and as you learn to trust it, It will prove its caring and its ability to heal you.  I don’t have to feel uneasy about making this promise because I am not the One Who proves it.  This promise is fulfilled by God Himself.  This promise is made over and over again in ACIM, NTI and the Bible as well as thousands of other books.  This is not a fallible human promise. The Creator has made this promise and it can be proven by entrusting your healing to Him.

As your healing progresses you will notice times when things seem to be “coming to a head”.  This is not a pleasant time but here’s what is happening; the ego’s beliefs are starting to break up under the gentle gaze of God’s love.  Just as shadows cannot survive in light, the ego’s beliefs cannot withstand the gentle gaze of God’s love which is now beginning to shine through your mind because of your trust in Him.  There may even be a sense of panic as you wonder if there is anything to cling to but in the middle of the mental turmoil there will be a sense of a “life preserver”, something very stable and gentle, inviting you to trust it.  You won’t have to search for it, it will be right there with you.  God will see to that! It is very much like being in deep water with large waves all around.  You may wonder if you are going to be able to tread water well enough to keep from drowning!  Then, there right in front of you, is a life preserver, a really big one!  As you grab a hold of it you recognize it to be God’s love and you feel an almost instant comfort.  Then in a moment of confusion you may feel a fear that the waves are more “real” than the life preserver.  In that moment of fear God’s love takes the opportunity to remind you that only his love is real.  Your comfort comes back and this time it is even deeper.  Soon you will recognize that God’s Love is what is real and the fear is not.  At that point you will begin to relax into His Love.  The roar of the waves now becomes unimportant and the trust that you feel in God’s love transports you to a new level of healing.  (Note: you don’t really “go” anywhere.  This “place”is more like a greater feeling of certainty, security, and peace coming into your heart because you recognize that God’s Love is Real, not fear).  This may or may not be the final episode in your healing but the process will be the same no matter where you are in the journey; the old beliefs begin to break up, you search for something greater to trust and it is given you by the grace of God.  Then a new cycle begins until you are stabilized in the knowledge that God’s Love is Real and your fear is not.

Section II – A few tips you will probably find useful

This section talks about managing your mind when you are experiencing fear. These are from my own experience as well as other sources but they all have one basic premise; they rely on the Power and Love of a Source beyond you.  I should clarify this and say: beyond your current awareness of yourself.

You will probably find that there is repetition of similar concepts in the following subjects.  In actuality, these ideas overlap so it is only reasonable that repetition will occur.

Patience is a strength. Take the attitude “This too shall pass”.
My experience has been that healing does not come in one single blinding flash.  It is a road you travel; a process. But take heart; the process has an end.  As the things dredged up from our unconscious are healed we feel a sense of release, of freedom.  Following soon afterward will be probably be another “cycle” of dredging up more of the causes of fear into our conscious awareness in order for the fear to be healed.  Trust that God knows what He is doing.  Also, be grateful that you do not have to know what your fear is in order for it to be healed!  God can see exactly what your fear is and knows exactly what to do to set you free.  All it requires on your part is a desire to be healed and then entrusting the process to Him.  Thankfully God is willing and able to handle it.  The Course also says that God is grateful for anything you surrender to Him for your healing.  There is a beautiful passage in the Course in Miracles that says, “God gave the Holy Spirit to you, and gave him the mission to remove all doubt and every trace of guilt that his dear son has laid upon himself.  It is impossible that this mission fail“.  There is another passage that says, “The Holy Spirit will help you reinterpret everything that you perceive as fearful, and teach you that only what is loving is true“. In your journey with God you will discover that your Creator’s intention is loving.  God will prove to you that you are cared for and loved as your fear is transformed into peace and joy.  It takes faith and determination to make this journey and there may be times when you feel lost, but stick with it because, even if you can’t seem to feel his presence, God is still there and He does not fail.  As time goes on you will find that your faith is supplemented and reinforced something very deep, gentle, and caring.  This is the presence of God’s love within your own heart.  At that point you may realize that what the Course in Miracles, NTI, the Bible and many, many other spiritually oriented books are saying: “God’s Love for us is real”!

Whatever the problem is, it symbolizes separation from God’s Love.  Some people have financial problems, others have relationship or health problems.  Whatever the issue may be, it is there to represent an idea of separation from Love, from our Creator and Source. All problems have a solution in God once they are entirely turned over to His loving care.  The key word is “ENTIRELY”.  The more completely you can give your heart over in trust, the more quickly you will be healed.  This is not because God is asking for “perfect trust” before he will take action. It is because He cannot give more than we will allow Him to give. If He were to heal us without our sincere desire to BE healed, He would be violating our free will.  Also, know that with each little bit of trust you extend toward God, He will reinforce and strengthen your trust.

There is nothing beyond God’s power to heal.
This is important.  There is N  O  T  H  I  N  G  beyond God’s power to heal…N  O  T  H  I  N  G.  No matter how strong you think your fear is, God’s ability to heal it is stronger.  Having said that, fear can make a person feel insane.  Believe it or not (and I didn’t believe it when I started my personal journey of trust and faith) God’s Love will give you the ability to understand that your fear is unfounded, false, and nothing to be concerned about. Fear is made from false ideas that are believed to be true.  If there was ONE false idea that was “Truer” than the Truth then God be overthrown.  That would be like saying that a shadow created by a light bulb has the ability to overpower the light that makes the shadow in the first place. But a shadow (fear) can only exist where light has been blocked.  Once God’s spiritual light has been requested to remove the shadow, God can only be grateful that you have made the request.  He knows how to do the rest and will do so gladly.  So do not hold your fear past the hope of healing.  Let go of the pain by trusting One Who really can heal it.  Think about this; if you make a request to God, Who is love, how could He not hear it? And having heard you, how could He not act?  And acting, how could He not succeed?  Remember, this is God we are talking about and God is Infinite Love and Power.  How could God’s creation (you) create something beyond His (God’s) power to heal?

The ego has been called the “shadow self”.  This is a good name for it because, just as in the physical world, a shadow only exists in the places where there is no light.  In this case the “light” is our awareness, our willingness to look at and acknowledge our pain.  If we are in pain but we will not acknowledge it, then the reasons for the pain remain hidden.  At the point where the pain becomes too great to ignore we can turn to God for help.  Our willingness to be healed is enough for God to get the job done.

You don’t know your advances from your retreats.
In a Course in Miracles an important concept is mentioned regarding our growth.  It states that we do not have a clear understanding of when we are moving toward our healing or moving away from it.  When unpleasant thoughts and feelings come to the forefront of our conscious awareness it is easy for us to MIS-interpret this as “moving away from healing” or, as the course calls it, a retreat.  In actual fact this is an advance toward our own healing because God is uncovering the hidden causes for our fear, pain, or dysfunction.  So remember that you cannot judge what is happening accurately.  Do your best to continue to put your trust in the idea that God knows what he is doing and leave it at that.

Don’t make your own judgments about how close you are to being healed.
Closely related to the idea “you don’t know your advances from your retreats” (above), you cannot make an accurate judgment about close to healing you are.  Overall, you will feel more peaceful as time goes on but it is possible to have a “bad day” even when you have been experiencing a time of greater peace.  If that happens, don’t decide (make a judgment) that,”I’ve lost ground.  I’ve slipped back into fear”.  What you may be experiencing is a screaming fit of the ego because you had a breakthrough the day before (or an hour before).  This is not uncommon.  On days when you make a breakthrough into clarity or peace, it makes the ego mind feel like its dying.  The best thing to do is just to continue to remind yourself that God Loves you and is, right now, helping you.  Just keep trusting and remain surrendered.  As mentioned above, repeat; “I forgive you.  It’s ok to feel this way”.  The road does go gradually upward, overall.  It will get better.

A great ally.
Oddly enough, one of your greatest allies is the recognition that you have come to the end of your rope.  The sense of despair that you may never be able to be healed will actually allow you to move more quickly toward your healing.  This is true because a person who puts no hope in their existing circumstances can easily let go of them.  In recognizing this it becomes much easier to turn to God with open arms and trust.  You will be willing to let go of everything else and hang onto God’s Love.  Believe me; this will shorten your journey considerably.

Keep on keeping on!
Once you have made up your mind that you MUST be free of debilitating fear, you have put yourself on a road with a companion Whose job is to make sure you get there.  You may feel as if you are alone but stop for a moment and remember all the promises that have been made to you In writings such as the A Course in Miracles, the Bible, and thousands more.  You will get there.  You have help.  Stop and rest for a moment knowing that there is a great compassion for you while you rest by the side of the road.  Maybe you need to rest for an entire day.  That’s okay; God’s love is right there with you and will wait with you as long as you need to rest.  When you are ready to resume your journey, remember that it is your own heart that wants to be free.  No one is making you do this.  Recognize that there is nothing more important than your own freedom from fear.  Ask for the presence of God to go with you, and resume your journey.  As Jesus says in ACIM;”Trust in my help for I did not walk alone and I will walk with you as our Father walked with me”.  He also said; “When I said ‘I am with you always’, I meant it literally.  I am not absent to anyone in any situation.”

Very Important!  Don’t try to “figure it out”!
Fear is what makes a person feel insane.  It is important to realize that you are not insane.  It is only fear that makes you feel that way.  Do NOT try to find peace and happiness by “figuring out why you don’t feel peace and happiness”!  Trust me on this, trying to ”figure it out” (analyzing) can very easily make fear worse because it just validates the idea that you CAN figure out the Truth, yet your own mind obviously is filled with beliefs that make it impossible for you to see the truth otherwise you would not be in the mess you’re in!  The harder you try, the closer you will come to a panic attack.

Because your mind already believes in what is false (as being true), trying to figure it out will only validate the reasons why you feel fearful and insane.  Although we are seeking some kind of explanation so that we can feel “ok”, and “in control”, we will not find it through analysis.  We must surrender this strong desire to analyze our fear to the One Who has our best interests at heart and cares deeply for us.  To use a mechanical analogy, pretend that your mind is like the motor in a car.  There is a Mechanic that knows EXACTLY how to fix the problem but he can’t stick His hands down into the motor as long as you are revving up the engine (trying to heal your fear by “figuring it out”).  But once you recognize that your way is not working and just say: “Ok Father I’m going to trust that you are the Author of Truth and that you know the best way to fix me”, your mind will be able to rest (in trust).  Then He can begin to work.

God’s not an idiot.  He knows that you want freedom from your fear and that is His goal as well, so you can trust that He knows the best way to get you there. Remember, He can look down on top of the walls of the mental maze you seem trapped in. You can’t.  You are stuck IN the maze.  You NEED His help to get out.

Our desire to understand and overcome the fear is a natural one but analyzing it is not the way in which we will truly understand it.  The kind of understanding we want is to find a deep Peace about the fear we seem trapped in…to see that the fear was false, and that we can finally release it. Trusting allows the healing process to bring you to a place of TRULY understanding the fear and with that understanding will come with a sigh of relief.

Be honest about what you feel.
It is possible that you have done a lot of spiritual study and STILL find yourself in a place of fear.  Our “spiritual ego” will say: “I should not be feeling fear anymore”, “I should have moved beyond this by now”, “I should have enough knowledge to fix this – all I have to do is focus my mind on positive thoughts”.  Let’s simply be honest about this.  Is what you are doing really WORKING?  If you find that you are spiraling down into more and more fear or pain, then it is not working.  There is no shame in admitting this.  The thing is; the mind that creates the problem cannot solve the problem.  At some point you just have to concede that, between the two of you, God has greater Vision and allow yourself to be healed by handing the problem over to Him.

Healing of fear is not frivolous; it is the best use of time.  The ego will tell you that your life is wrecked, that your life is useless, that this whole fear episode should never happened, and many more forms of the idea that what you are experiencing now (fear) is a waste of life and you are somehow guilty or worthless for feeling it.  The truth is that we all have hidden fears and the vast majority of people go through life masking their fears are struggling with them and because of this they go through life not really being “alive”.  The person whose life falls apart because of fear is really ahead of the pack.  Sooner or later everyone must face their fears.  To embark on a journey of healing is not only the most important gift you can give yourself, it’s the greatest gift you can give to everyone in your life as well.  The time you spend focusing on your own healing is not self-centered or narcissistic.  Coming to a greater awareness of yourself will allow you to feel truly alive.  To find God’s Love in your heart is one the greatest gifts we can discover!  Once you have found this you won’t be able to stop yourself from giving it away!  Everyone in your life will benefit.

Sometimes being alone for a little while is better.  Because this process can be fairly intense, there will be days when it will be more beneficial for you not to be in the presence of people.  Hopefully it will be possible for you get away from the people in your life on an “as-needed basis”. Going on long walks, a bike ride or even finding a room in the house where you can be alone will be useful when you feel the need.

Accept what you feel. It’s OK to feel what you are feeling!
This is a little different than being honest about what you feel (mentioned above) because as we move through the thoughts and feelings that are dredged up, we may not want to feel what we feel.  We may try to push what we feel away from our awareness or to distract ourselves with activities or friends.  This is normal!  The feelings that are in the process of healing are not pleasant sometimes.  I have found it helpful to go on a long gentle walk or to engage my mind with some simple task that doesn’t require a lot of thought like yard work or house chores.  This way we allow the thoughts or feelings to be with us but we occupy our mind in a gentle way, which keeps us from dwelling on them.
One thing I found valuable to say to myself is: “I forgive you, <your name here>.  It’s OK to feel this way”.  Repeating this to yourself when you are in the pain of fear can help move you through it gently.

Be gentle with yourself!
On days that are hard, it’s probably better to be away from the people you are close to.  Do something kind for yourself.  Walk in nature, if that is something you like to do.  Go to a movie provided it won’t be upsetting or a deliberate attempt to distract yourself.  Maybe yelling at your sofa will be useful on a bad day.  Anger can be a useful part of the process!
You will have good days too.  On those days, do something you love to do or be with someone you enjoy.

God is gentle.
It may take some time to realize the idea that God is gentle because the feelings and thoughts that arise during healing can be rather “rough”.  At some point you will begin to realize that your will and God’s will are the same; you both want healing for yourself.  As a little time goes on you will recognize how incredibly gentle and loving God’s help is.  He will not fail you.

God has made you a promise which you can personally trust.
If you look in the Bible, The Course in Miracles, or NTI you will see literally hundreds of statements encouraging us to trust the healing presence of God.  All of these books (and hundreds more) can’t be making promises if there isn’t some truth to it!  Reading these on a continuing basis helps to bolster our faith and trust.  This allows us to trust God even more which then creates a greater channel for the results we are seeking.

Rest, Accept, Trust (RAT).
In NTI, there is a helpful method for dealing with your mind when it seems out of control.  The process is to:
Rest your mind. In other words stop thinking, stop worrying, and just STOP!  With your mind spinning in circles nothing can be healed.
Accept what you’re feeling now.  This is not the easiest thing to do sometimes but it allows us to move through our feelings rather than be trapped by them.  Acknowledge “this is what I’m feeling now, but it will pass”.  Also, as mentioned above say; “I forgive you <name>. It’s OK to feel this way”.  Remember that God is right there with you.  In fact it may be helpful to visualize Jesus or someone else that you trust holding you.  They may be saying, “it’s okay to feel this way” the interesting thing is we already feel these feelings so we are really just giving ourselves permission to feel what we already feel.  When we accept what we feel we will move through the feeling much faster.
Trust. This allows us to move forward.  Recognizing that we cannot continue to live in fear helps us let go and trust a power greater than ourselves.  Remember that God will respond to your slightest request for help.  Having heard your request for help how could he not act?  And acting how could he not succeed?  Remember this is God we’re talking about!
Some people need to feel a sense of Trust BEFORE they can Rest their mind (me for instance).  In that case the process is Trust, Rest, and Accept.  Some people need to accept their feelings before they can Trust.  My point is that R, A, T is not a hard and fast rule.  Whatever works for you is the one you should use.

Be patient.  This too shall pass.  One thing I found to be true is that patience allows you to look at the bigger picture than just the current moment.  By having a larger perspective we keep from taking the current moment too seriously.  Patience allows us to see that a long-term view is reasonable and will help us relax.  We will have the sense that this is just one more rung on the ladder toward our healing and indeed that is the case.  While you may not feel so great right now, this too shall pass.  A week from now you will feel differently.  Remember that the healing process leads gradually upward.  There really is light at the end of the tunnel!  The development of trust takes its own time.

Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is Trust.  Learning to trust is a gradual thing.  As we acquire some trust we may think “Ok, NOW I’ve got it.  I’m HEALED!!!”, and dismiss God from any further duties.  This is really our ego’s desire to be back in “control” but we will soon find ourselves in fear and pain with this desire.  Do what you can to stay in an attitude of trust.  After regrouping and refocusing our heart back to the Loving and gentle direction that comes from God we will realize that God MUST lead the way to our healing because we cannot heal ourselves.  My advice is to be grateful every time you have a breakthrough in to greater comfort, stability, and trust.  This gratitude will help your ability to trust grow even further into a recognition of Reality…YOUR Reality.  Eventually you will realize that you can stand up in the warm sunshine that has always been shining and let go of fear.  You will be able to let go of your fear because only God’s Love is Real…nothing else.  God is in charge of bringing you to this place of understanding but He can only do so if you give Him permission.  Because of the universal influence of His Love, you will ultimately yield to your own desire to come home to His Loving Heart.  He has no judgment toward you and wants you to come Home even more than you! When your fear is replaced with His Love you will know this to be true.

What feels insane CANNOT be the Truth.  God’s Love IS the Truth.  Going through this “refining process” can be very difficult at times.  You may even question if you are “sane”.  Ego will tell us that what is fearful IS the Truth but your inner wisdom will tell you that if it feels insane, it CAN’T be the Truth.  The Truth is always Loving and comforting.  It makes no harsh demands on us that we cannot fulfill through trusting.  Remember, God WANTS us to be close to Him, not to send us running away in fear.  Intuitively we feel comfortable with the idea of a Loving God and we are right.  God indeed wants us to know His love as intimately as possible right in our own Heart.

Don’t be afraid that you are afraid and don’t feel guilty for it.  When you are in great fear there is a tendency to attack yourself for being afraid.  Unconsciously we feel that God may be the “enemy”.  We may feel that we are hiding something (or not surrendering totally) from Him and because of this feel even more fear or guilt.  If we could just understand that God’s love is gentle and accepting!  We would know instantly that there was never any reason for us to be afraid or feel guilty.  It is His purpose to bring us to that point.  Whatever small amount of trust you can offer, he will amplify it and use in the most effective way.  God will take what you can give Him and wait until you are willing to give more.

If you are confused, angry, upset or anything else, that’s okay.  We have a tendency to think that every negative thing that we feel is wrong, which makes us “bad”.  God would never condemn us for the things we condemn ourselves for.  We judge ourselves harshly and the ironic thing is that God doesn’t judge us at all.  Forgive yourself by reminding yourself that God does not judge you.  He only wants to help. Knowing this we can begin to accept whatever state of mind we are in at the time.  God does not demand perfection.  If you have children you know that when your child is confused, hurt, or afraid, it does not need criticism, it needs kindness and understanding.  You can rest assured that God will treat you that way.

Take a walk or do something physical.  If things are getting too confused and tangled up in your mind, get out of the house.  Take a walk, exercise, or something to get out of your current environment.  If you own a bike, take a bike ride somewhere.  The point is that getting away from your current environment will help you put things in perspective.

Disengage for awhile. See a friend or do a chore or something you enjoy. If the situation permits, going and seeing a friend is a good way to change your perspective on things.  Being with people is a great tonic IF you are in a place to enjoy their company.  If not, it may be better to do some chores just to move your mind’s occupation away from “feelings”.  Or, if you have a hobby, maybe it would feel good to involve yourself with that for a while.  Again, the point is to shift the mind away from preoccupation.  While it is useful to feel faith or trust in God’s Presence while the fear is in your mind, sometimes we can’t connect to faith at that point.  To prevent the mind from going around in circles it is useful to apply it to a simple task.  This allows the mind to break the cycle of preoccupation and this will help you change your perspective on things.  While doing these chores I have found it useful to repeat a “faith-giving” phrase over and over as I do the chore.

Understanding with the intellect versus understanding with the heart.  Understanding with the intellect is not the same as understanding with the heart.  You can understand what your fear is intellectually, but that will not heal it.  You may think you know where the fear comes from and how it becomes activated and yet find that you still are not healed.  The best example I can think of is that intellectual understanding is like being in a maze where the walls are too tall for you to see over the top. As you work your way through the maze you do so blindly, not knowing where the exit is and not knowing whether you are getting closer or farther from it.  No amount of analysis will be able to tell you where the exit is.  Spiritual understanding is like being up above the maze so you can easily see all the walls at once as well is the way out.  This understanding comes from asking God for help, not by trying to figure it out on your own.

How come it feels like the fear can never be healed?  The part of us that is convinced that it can NEVER be healed.  It sees the problem from the set of beliefs that created the problem and therefore, it sees the problem as having no solution.  This may cause you to feel a wave of panic but believe it or not these beliefs are exactly what God is able to remove.  God will PROVE to you that this “insurmountable” wall you are feeling is not real!  As you become more and more trusting your heart will change and God’s Love will seem more real than the fear.  I found it useful to shut my eyes and repeat “God Loves me” over and over when I encounter these strong feelings of fear or a sense that the problem can never be healed.  Think about this; If God created us through Love then it would be impossible for Him NOT to help when we ask.

If you wake up during the night with an upset mind don’t try to figure out the problems that are bothering youThis is purely practical advice.  When you are not fully awake you are not in a good “mental space” to deal with the upset.  Just give yourself permission to ask God for help.  You might say; “Father, you know that I want peace about this issue (whatever it may be).  I ask you to hold me safely for the rest of this night so that we can continue our journey tomorrow”.  I have also found it helpful to find a good radio station with soothing music that will gently redirect the attention of my mind. Maybe reading some supportive spiritual material will be helpful for you as well.  Later on, after I have started my day, I tell God that I am ready to resume our journey toward healing and I ask that His Loving Presence guide my mind and heart.

God will help you trust Him.  As we give our trust to God, He takes that trust and uses it to strengthen the very trust we are giving to Him.  This takes some experience to be able to recognize, but it is the truth.  There will still be times when trust is hard to find but overall it will get easier.  At some point you will recognize that there is nothing you would WANT to withhold from God’s Love and healing.  You will gladly give everything to Him.  The choice becomes clear that to hold something away from healing is just to create misery inside yourself, so why not release it into God’s Love?

The erroneous belief that we are only in God’s favor if I continually surrender.  We are ALWAYS in God’s favor.  WE are the one who judges ourselves as “out of God’s favor”, which is impossible. If we want to hang onto something painful, God has no choice but to allow us to do so because He knows that we must discover that our true desire to value ONLY that which is of Him.  He will still bless us while we are holding on to our illusions, and hope for our healing.  Most times we hang on to the things that are painful because we see them as valuable, fun, necessary, etc.  The problem is we don’t always admit to ourselves that something we are hanging onto IS painful.  As the Course says, we have confused pain and joy in many cases.  The idea of revenge is a good example.  The idea of revenge suggests to us that it would really feel good to “get even” with someone who has just screwed us.  Yet in the end it really feels better to build bridges instead of burning them.  Revenge gives pain to both parties; forgiveness gives joy to both parties.

Mind watching.  Some disciplines ask you to watch the thoughts going through your mind for ego thoughts (fear thoughts in this case).  Some teachers say that if you just “sit with the fear” that it will dissipate on its own.  You may be different than me but when I find myself in fear I have found the technique of sitting with fear to be unhelpful.  When your mind is in turmoil it can be a burden to impose extra responsibilities on it.  My recommendation is to focus on trust and faith.  Faith and trust will quiet your mind if you can trust or have faith.  If you can’t feel these, then don’t worry about it.  God has not lost you and you have not lost God.  It is impossible that God would fail in the task of revealing that you are loved when it is His purpose to do so!  Just know that God’s Love is with you anyway and find some simple task(s) to do that will redirect your thinking in order to quiet your mind. Be patient.  This too shall pass!

Don’t judge what IS – especially your current state of mind.  Can you look at the world around you and see that what happens is not changed by any judgment that you make upon it?  If you see someone driving down the street with their radio blasting and subwoofer pumping out massive bass frequencies, what goes through your mind?  That they are “jerks” for being inconsiderate?  That they are enjoying life and this is their way of expressing it?

The point is; what happens is what it is and that’s ALL it is, nothing more.  Our opinion about it does not change what happened.  It does not turn it into something other than what it is and therefore it is pointless to cast a judgment upon it.  The same with our judgment toward ourselves.  We have a tendency to make the judgment that when we feel bad, we ARE bad.  We may make a judgment that if we feel anything other than being purposeful, happy, or forgiving, we are off-track, “bad”, separated from God, and lost from His Grace.  Judgment is the problem, NOT our state of mind.  Let’s say that you feel depressed because you are going through a hard time. The “Spiritual ego”, the ego that thinks it is “educated” in spiritual principals, can use spiritual ideas against us in the form of “shoulds” (or “shouldn’ts).  It will make judgments based on what it thinks it knows, saying things like: I’m doing the ACIM workbook lessons, I should feel joy, not depression.  Really?  Who says so?  Spiritual study tends to bring up things that need to be healed.  It is usually not an instant healing.  The larger point is that if we judge ourselves for any bad feeling or thought we have at the moment, it just makes it seem stronger (notice I said “SEEM”).  So WHATEVER you are feeling at the moment, don’t judge against it, that is, don’t make yourself wrong for feeling it.  It is the acceptance of your feelings at the moment that will enable you to move through them more quickly.  Judgment of your feelings/thoughts is not helpful because it does not change the fact that you still feel them. By NOT judging them you may even be able to see your own perfection in the midst of feeling bad just as a loving parent still loves their child when it is upset.

Logic can help bolster Faith.  If you think about it logically, how could there be any power greater than the Creator’s?  If there were a power greater than God’s, then there would be no absolute Truth.  Chaos would rule and God would not be God.  Since God is Love, Love would also be obliterated and replaced with judgment and hate.  Thankfully it is the other way around.  The ultimate power IS God, Who is the essence of Love and Kindness.  This means that you are fully justified in expecting a healing.  When that healing comes is something you can’t determine, so be content to walk in faith on your journey with your Creator (or Jesus or whomever you have chosen as your guide).  See and feel the kindness in these passages spoken by Jesus in ACIM:

You do not walk alone.  God’s angels hover near and all about.  His Love surrounds you, and of this be sure; that I will never leave you comfortless.

I can heal you because I know you. I know you value for you, and is this value that makes you whole.

Cast thy burden upon the Lord:  The Bible says “Cast thy burden upon the Lord (releasing the weight of it) and He will sustain you.” (Psalm 55; v22)

This is a VERY powerful tool for healing and that is why I have placed it near the end.  The ability to do this seems to come only after trust has been built up to the point where we feel a Presence to whom we can release our burden. Before that, we may feel that God is just some fantasy.  The burden we release may be fear of some situation, person, thing, or it may be just fear itself.  Whatever it is the key is “releasing the weight of it”.  As our faith and trust gradually grow we eventually find that we have the ability to release the burden of fear into God’s Love. When you are able to do this you will recognize that your burden itself had no reality at all.  The problem was that you believed your fear (or the object of your fear) to be a solid, unchangeable, physical FACT.  The ego will always tell us our problems have no solutionEVER.  Any time you feel this despairing thought you can rest assured that it is a lie because there is no power greater than that of God and His Love.  Anything that does not feel loving is therefore false.

As you release your burden into the Love of God, this Love will prove that there was never any reality to your perception and the burden of fear surrounding it will begin to evaporate like it never has before.  The light has found a way into your heart and the shadows of fear cannot help but be dispersed where the light of God’s Love exists.

The developing of trust and faith takes a while but the effort is not solely up to us.  God strengthens our faith and trust as we give faith and trust, so we cannot lose!

Remember also that God WANTS us to be happy and at peace!  This means you can let go of any doubts that God is kind.  God IS on our side! His desire to heal us is proof of this and anyone who has had a healing through trusting their Creator will tell you that, indeed, He is WITH you in your desire to be free.  This also means that what you feel in your heart is known. God is aware of what is in your mind and heart but does not judge.  This is where religion and spirituality may disagree.  Religion has often taught us that God is always judging us, but God is kind and kindness does not judge. Because your struggles are known, God knows exactly how to heal you and how to do it with compassion.  One last thing; God created you SANE and perfectly without fear.  That is your natural state.  God can only create through His Love and the extension of His Creating must be as perfect as he is at its Heart.  So let God reveal that YOU, at your heart, are still sinless, and beautiful.

Once you experience the Creator’s ability to turn your problems into nothingness, you will feel the close Companionship that we share with God.  Once you realize that the Creator (or Jesus or Mary or Holy Spirit or Whomever) is close by, always accessible by faith, you will begin to bring all your pain to that place of Grace within you and find that, as you release it, it is gone.  Eventually you will learn that this Love is with you always.  You may have to return to this place of Grace many times before the belief in the problem is completely removed, but that’s how the process of refinement goes.  What is remarkable is the extraordinary sense of comfort and communion you will experience.  This occurs because Spirit is literally able to demonstrate that the fearful illusions we believed it DO NOT EXIST.  The reason we were afraid of them is because we believed them to be Truth and Spirit is able to PROVE they are false.  This is not describable in words.  It occurs within your heart.  Do not think for a moment that God is not able to accomplish this!  As A Course in Miracles says: “God gave the Holy Spirit to you and gave Him the mission to remove all doubt and every trace of guilt from His dear Son’s mind.  It is impossible that this mission fail”.

The results of “sticking with it”.
Eventually your days will become easier and happier.  Once you make up your mind that you MUST be healed no matter what, you will simultaneously become more aware of God’s commitment to you (God’s commitment to you is always maximum.  He does not hold back). He will stick with you on the path you have chosen.  Having said that, there is no set time period as to how long healing will take.  It can be a few months or a few years.  But what would you rather do?  Keep living your life feeling insane? No…it is better just to settle into the healing process and walk with God on this worthwhile journey.  There is no other use of your time that is as important.

You may be surprised at the sense of acceptance you will experience as your sense of companionship with God deepens through your desire to trust Him.  This sense of acceptance will help you to accept yourself and you will begin to feel that it’s ok to be YOU.  You are loved just the way you are.

You will also notice an increasing sense of stability and confidence.  Life will slowly become happier and you will experience more of an enthusiasm for living. As I said, these things happen slowly.  There is no specific amount of time that this process takes.  Like a kid on a long trip who continues to ask their parents “are we there yet?”, be content with the answer the parent would give to their child; “we’ll get there when we get there”.  Take heart that the journey DOES have an end…one that ends in your freedom.

 

Section III – Helpful phrases from
the Bible, the Course in Miracles, and NTI.

This section has passages that can lend comfort and inspiration during the times you are hurting.  These were helpful to me.  I hope they will be helpful to you.  My primary sources are The Course in Miracles  (http://acim.org/),  Holy Spirit’s Interpretation of the New Testament scribed by Regina Dawn Akers (www.reginadawnakers.com) and, believe it or not, the Bible.  Reading the bible requires focusing on the promises of God and letting them speak to your heart.  The negative stuff you can pretty much ignore.

Inspiring Phrases from the Bible.

Let me preface this by saying you may think the Bible is considered “unenlightened” or “religious”.  Some very enlightened people have found inspiration in the Bible.  Joel Goldsmith (a great spiritual light) used to read the Bible frequently.  If you read the promises of the Bible and take them as meant for YOU (which they ARE!), you will let the Love of God touch your heart.  It is the awareness of God’s Love that will lift you above your trials.  I want to mention that when I read the Bible, I primarily read the Psalms and Isaiah.  I was particularly aware of any promises that were spelled out. For instance Psalm 37 verse 10: “for yet a little while and the evildoer will be no more: though you look with care where he used to be, he will not be found.”  To me this says that it will not be that long before we have clarity and peace about fear (the “evildoer”).  Think about the Source of this Promise.  There is an infinitely powerful Creator capable of accomplishing a promise like this.  This Creator cares about us and, in fact, His greatest desire is to have us return Home, to Peace, to Love.  How could He NOT do everything possible to heal our mind?

This is only one of hundreds of promises made to us personally.  To me, these promises spoke directly to my heart and gave me deeper assurance that I was being healed.  As I felt the implicit grace in these promises I began to experience God’s Love in a greater way.  This love combined with trust to create a very strong presence that did not fight against fear, but gently revealed fear to be unreal.  This is exactly what a fearful heart needs!  Let me go on to say that the idea of a vengeful God is incorrect and you can ignore anything with that kind of feeling.  God is anything BUT vengeful.  God is Kindness itself. Further, any ideas found in the Bible that complain or accuse God of being unfaithful are all false ideas.  Any passages that talk about God killing anyone are also a false idea.  Why would Love do that?  Stick with looking for God’s Promises and you will directly experience the Love of God in your heart.

A few passages to get you started (in no particular order):

Psalm 126 verses 5 and 6:

They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.  He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

Psalm 18 verses 28, 29:

For You cause my lamp to be lighted and to shine; the Lord my God illumines my darkness.  For by You I can run through a troop and by my God I can leap over a wall. (I can do what seems impossible)

Psalm 30 verse 5;

Weeping shall endure for a night but joy cometh in the morning.

Psalm 23 verses 4 and 6:

Yes, though I walk through the (deep, sunless) valley of the shadow of death, I will fear or dread no evil, for You are with me…

Surely only goodness, mercy, and unfailing love shall follow me all the days of my life, and through the length of my days the house of the Lord (and His Presence) shall be my dwelling place.

Psalm 118 verses 21 and 22;

I will praise thee; for thou hast heard me and art become my salvation.

Psalm 8 verse 5:

You have made him little lower than Angels and you have crowned him with glory and honor.

Psalm 41 verse 11;

By this I know that thou favorest me, because mine enemy doth not triumph over me.

Psalm 42 verse 8;

Yet the Lord will command his loving kindness in the daytime, and in the night his song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life.

Psalm 42 verse 8;

Why art thou cast down my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God; for I shall yet praise Him, Who is the health of my countenance, and my God.

Psalm 34 verses 6,7,8;

This poor man cried and the Lord heard him and saved him out of ALL his troubles.

The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear Him and delivereth them.

O taste and see that the Lord is good.

Psalm 30 verse 11;

Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing; thou hast girded me with gladness.

Psalm 31 verses 15, 17;

My times are in thy hand; deliver me from the hand of mine enemies, and from them that persecute me.

Let me not be ashamed, O Lord for I have called upon thee.

Psalm 31 verses 22, 24;

For I said in my haste, I am cut off from before thine eyes; nevertheless thou heardest the voice of my supplications when I cried unto thee,

Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.

Isaiah 42 verse 7;

God’s covenant with us is; To open the eyes of the blind, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, and those who sit in darkness from the prison. (My comment; WE are the blind and WE are the prisoners in the dungeon)

Isaiah 42 verse 16;

I will bring the blind by a way that they know not; I will lead them in paths they have not known. I will make the darkness into light before them and make uneven places into a plain. These things I have determined to do for them; and I will not leave them forsaken. (My comment; In other words God will lead us OUT of our problem but it will probably NOT be what we expected.  The thing is His way will WORK so we have to trust that He knows what He is doing!).

Isaiah 43 verses 1,2,4:

Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are Mine.

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you.  When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned or scorched, nor will the flame kindle upon you.

Because you are precious in My sight and honored, and because I love you, I will give men in return for you and peoples in exchange for your life (My Comment; this does not mean that God would value us more than anyone else.  It means that we are each cherished and God would give something of great value to keep us with Him.)

…not sure where this comes from;

He Who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it. (My Comment; God won’t lead you half-way across the stream and then abandon you.  The water may seem deep at times but God has made a Promise and it would be illogical to think that God would not, or could not, keep that Promise.)

 

There are many, many others that I will leave for you to discover. Don’t forget that it is impossible that God would be vengeful because it is impossible that Love could ever hate. Any passages that seem to imply this you can read symbolically or just ignore them. Look for the Promises!

 

 

Inspiring Phrases from the Course in Miracles;

I give you the lamp and will go with you.  You will not take this journey alone.  I will lead you to your true Father, who hath need of you, as I do.

Only the love of God will protect you in all circumstances.  It will lift you out of every trial, and raise you high above all perceived dangers of this world into a climate of perfect peace and safety.

I ask but this; that you be comforted and live no more in terror and in pain.  Do not abandon Love.  To your tired eyes I bring a vision of a different world, so new and clean and fresh you will forget the pain and sorrow that you saw before.

You do not walk alone.  God’s angels hover near and all about.  His Love surrounds you, and that this be sure; that I will never leave you comfort-less.

Your part is very simple.  You need only recognize that everything you learned you do not want.  Ask to be taught and do not use your past experiences to confirm what you have learned.

God holds your future as he holds your past and present.  They are one to him, and so they should be one to you.  Past, present, and future are not continuous unless you force continuity on them.  You are asked to let the future go and place it in God’s hands.

(Jesus speaking).  Trust in my help, for I did not walk alone, and I will walk with you as our Father walked with me.

(Jesus speaking).  I can heal you because I know you.  I know your value for you, and it is this value that makes you whole.

A prayer: (Jesus speaking).  “Be in my mind, my father, when I awake, and shine on me throughout the day today.  Let every minute be a time in which I dwell with you.  And let me not forget my hourly Thanksgiving that you have remained with me, and always will be there to hear my call to you and answer me.  As evening comes, let all my thoughts be still of you and of your love.  And let me sleep sure of my safety, certain of your care, and fully aware I am your son.”

You are not asked to dispel your hallucinations alone (fears, doubts, problems).  You are merely asked to evaluate them in terms of their results to you.  If you do not want them on the basis of loss of peace, they will be removed from your mind for you.  If you are willing to renounce the role of guardian of your thoughts and open them to me, I will correct them very gently and lead you back to God.

I am surrounded by Your Love, forever still, forever gentle and forever safe.

Beautiful child of God, you are asking only for what I promised you.  Do you believe that I would deceive you?

Have faith in only this one thing, and it will be sufficient: God wills you be in Heaven, and nothing can keep you from it, or it from you.  Your wildest misperceptions, you’re weird imaginings, your blackest nightmares all mean nothing.  They will not prevail against the peace God wills for you.

(Jesus speaking).  When I said, “I am with you always,” I meant it literally.  I am not absent to anyone in any situation.  Because I am always with you, you are the Way, the truth and the life.

The concept of yourself that you now hold would guarantee your function here remain forever unaccomplished and undone.  And thus it dooms you to a bitter sense of deep depression and futility.  Yet it need not be fixed, unless you choose to hold it past the hope of change and keep it static and concealed within your mind.

I take the journey with you.  For I share your doubts and fears a little while, that you may come to me who recognizes the road by which all fears and doubts are overcome.  We walk together.  I must understand uncertainty and pain, although I know they have no meaning.

(Jesus speaking).  You have reached your hand to me and I will never leave you.

It is possible to read his words (Jesus’ words) and benefit from them without accepting him into your life.  Yet he would help you yet a little more if you will share your pains and joys with him, and leave them both to find the peace of God.

Nothing you can do can change eternal love.  Forget your dreams of sin and guilt, and come with me…

What you had faith in still is faithful, and watches over you in faith so gentle yet so strong that it would lift you far beyond the veil, and place the Son of God safely within the sure protection of his Father.

 

 

 

Inspiring phrases from NTI (note; NTI is channeled by Regina Akers.  The voice she scribed has no specific name);

Page 79 : “I tell you,” he whispered.  “You are not worthless.  You are like a jewel that shines bright before the eyes of our Lord, only you have been unaware of your brightness.  It is within you, awaiting only your recognition and welcome.

Page 132 : There is doubt that healing can occur.  There is doubt that I am reality.  There is doubt, angry and fearful doubt, within you.  Do not deny the doubt that you see.  It is not to be denied.  It is part of the mind that rejects the healing that is offered to it.  It will seem to resist the healing and try to cast away.  But do not fear.  In spite of its struggle and raucous noise, healing cannot be rejected.  Through your willingness to be healed, healing will walk through the mob in your mind, passing it by in gentleness, leaving it in peace to quiet on its own.  This is the way we walked together.  It is the way of peace and great joy.

Page 132: It is best for you to realize that you do not know the answers and you could not heal yourself.  The way to healing is to listen to me…

page 132: You may seemed to be possessed of an evil voice that whispers torturous thoughts into your mind and will not go away.  This “demon” is your fear.  It will disguise itself in many forms in order to distract you from the truth of what is, but do not let it fool you.  It is your fear of healing, so it must be sickness.  For what else could fear healing but sickness?  Does love need to fear healing?  Does peace need to fear healing?  That which is the effects of health need not fear healing, so it is your sickness that causes fear and pain within you.

Page 134: Things are not as they seem.  This is why I ask you to trust me and follow me.  I know how things are.  You are blind to these facts, for you only know what you think you know, and that is nothing but a deep and burdensome slumber.
Step away from what you know, and come with me.
Cast what you know away from you, and I will help you to pull in a net full of what you did not believe was possible.

Do not worry that you do not have enough faith to complete the journey for if you have faith to start, you have faith to complete it.

All means of self-hatred will come up in you, but do not be alarmed.  Your blemishes come to me for healing.  Your hatred comes to me through your faith and willingness that it may be healed.

Hatred is nothing but a desire for Love that believes Love is absent.  In My Light, it shall know Love is not absent.  In this knowledge, it is healed.

Spend time with me when hatred comes upon you.  Retreat to a quiet place, and ask for my help.

I invite your unhealed spots into the light that I may heal them.

I will not abandon you when the unhealed spots answer my call and stepped forth to be healed.

Page 142: Do not be afraid.  I am with you, even now.  Stay with the process.  Be the good soil that produces a crop.

Page 210: Do not be afraid that you are afraid, and do not feel guilty for it.  All that you have imagined has not affected truth, and so you could have done nothing wrong.

Page 224: What is it that you must do?  You must release your guilt.  There is no reason to hide it, for there is no judge to hide it from.  God IS life, and he has given his gift to you.  You are living it.  No crime has been committed, because you live.  It is only the belief that you have committed a crime that must be healed.  This belief is healed by bringing your guilt into the light and finding that you are not judged.  Released into the light, there is no guilt, for God has witnessed no crime.

You are not guilty.  You are a child of Light.

To know your own innocence, you must do this: you must trust me.

Even before your innocence is an experience that you realize, you must trust me that it is so.  For if you do not trust me, you will not let your guilt come out from its hiding place so that I may show you it is false.  If your guilt does not come out from hiding, you will continue to believe it, and you’ll remain in prison.

And so I am asking you to trust me beyond the voice that says you are guilty.

Let me teach you that your innocence is your truth.

Page 228: In what seems to be your times of trial and tribulation cling tightly to me and do not let go.  I will carry you through to your time of peace and celebration.  From there, you shall be carried to your joy.  This is a promise that I make, and it is a promise you need not fear.  For it is the promise of your Holy Spirit, who’s  will is the same as yours.

Page 251: Turn to me during your trials and temptations.  I will not let you down.  I will accept the gift of your willingness and give you all that you ask.  I am your support, and you are supported.  Together we will undo what needs to be undone.

Do not fear that you are alone as you release your thoughts of illusion.  Do not fear that you will be left with nothing.  For the light of God is all that you are, and illusion is what you are not.

Page 259: Always, God’s love is with you.  Always, you are in his arms.  You may trust this truth, because it cannot fail to be true.  When you relax into him, you shall know that you are carried.  As you relax into him, you know his care.

There are many, many others which I will leave you to discover.


 

Section III – My wishes for your healing.

As I said in the beginning, the path out of fear takes trust and this can take a while to come to fruition within us.  The process is one of ups and downs, especially in the beginning.  As you continue to apply faith the ups and downs become smoother and you will realize there is a stair-stepped process of achieving some peace then going into fear again but the fear will not be as bad as before.  After the fear will come an even higher feeling of peace followed by another refinement of fear but not as bad as the previous one.  And so it goes gradually upward with each “up” then down with each high a little higher and each low a little higher than before.

My wish for you to experience the healing power of God’s Love, a Love that will truly show you that your fear was unfounded.  This is God’s gift to all of us and to each of us.  It is a gift that He wants with all His heart to give so that we may experience what is mentioned in one of the Psalms:  “You have made us little lower than Angels”.  We are God’s Angels.  Let His Love prove that to you.

 

 

David VanDyke

November 2012 ACIMblog bulletin

ACIMblog bulletin for November 2012:

Class: Universal Symbolic Mirrors of Natural Laws: Denver, CO Nov 5, 2012

Universal Geometries of Inclusion: How Symbolic Mirrors of Natural Laws Become Reminders for Kindness - Denver class 5Nov2012
On Monday, Nov. 5, 2012, from 7-9PM (Mountain Standard Time) I’ll be giving an evening multimedia class/presentation: “Universal Symbolic Mirrors of Natural Laws Within Us; Friendly Reminders of Inclusion to Forgive the Dreamer of Separation” at Shining Lotus Metaphysical Bookstore, 2178 S. Colorado Blvd., Denver, CO 80222 I will share LOTS of visual multimedia imagery, animation and more, along with plenty of theory on the mystical underpinnings of sacred geometry, the seven ancient Hermetic laws of truth, take-home lessons from modern physics, and how the non-dual metaphysics of inclusion, kindness and forgiving our self-judgments is key to sustainable happiness (a.k.a. non-dual metaphysics)! 🙂 There will be a book-signing after the class; both of my books, Sacred Geometry Design Sourcebook and The Geometry Code, are available from Shining Lotus Metaphysical Bookstore. Space is limited to 20 participants, so please contact me ASAP if you’re interested and want to pre-register.

7 New Articles by Brent Haskell

Brent Haskell

Brent Haskell is the author of Journey Beyond Words and The Other Voice: A Companion to the Text of The Course Chapters 1-15 (Miracles Studies Book). During October, 2012, I had the pleasure of meeting Brent at the Miracles In The Mountains conference in Cañon City, Colorado and hearing him give a presentation there, during which offered to send several articles:
Jeshua: The Script Is Written
Yeshua: On Creation
Yeshua: On Fear
Yeshua: On Faith
Jeshua: On Why The World
Jeshua: On Marriage
Jeshua: On Death and Dying

Kindle edition of The Geometry Code now available!


The long-awaited (at least by me 🙂 Kindle version of the book The Geometry Code: Universal Symbolic Mirrors of Natural Laws Within Us; Friendly Reminders of Inclusion to Forgive the Dreamer of Separation is now available. Many thanks to all who have encouraged me to complete it, and all your support … so very appreciated! 🙂 BTW, if you prefer a ‘treeware’ (paperback) version, you can order it here. Here are abundant details about the book – which really IS an ACIM-studies book, despite the prominent appearance of the word ‘geometry’ in the title.
Just an FYI, even if you don’t have a Kindle, there are lots of other platforms you can read the Kindle version (or any Kindle book) on, including smartphones such as iPhone and iTouch, Android, Windows Phone 7, Blackberry, Windows and Macintosh computers, and tablets like iPad and Android tablet. Enjoy! 🙂

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

More online study groups via Google+ Hangouts

ACIM Hangout - Diederik Wolsak - screen snap from video presentation-meeting

Kenneth Bok, José Lorenzo Rodríguez, Michael Ordoña, Maureen Muldoon, several others (including a new group forming in Germany) and myself have been collaborating and expanding online (Google+) ACIM Hangout study groups and meetings; here’s a link to the ACIMExplained’s YouTube Channel (which has LOTS of wonderful videos) and the most recent weekly Saturday morning meeting (a ‘full house’ with 10 participants) including ACIM – Diederik Wolsak. Enjoy, and join in if you feel inspired to share in the fun. Here’s a calendar of upcoming online ACIM Hangouts.

Miracles In The Mountains Conference: Cañon City, CO Oct 12-14, 2012

A few weekends ago, I attended – and very much enjoyed! – the Miracles In The Mountains (MITM) Conference; where I had the pleasure of meeting many new fellow ACIM students (many of whom I only had ‘met’ on FaceBook), scribes, and teachers – we’re all teaching one thought system or the other 24/7/365 aren’t we! – such as Brent Haskell (see the 7 new articles above!), Scott Kalechstein Grace and Larry Seyer, (and re-connecting in ‘person’ with a handful of long-time ones, like Gary Renard, Cindy Lora Renard and Regina Dawn Akers); I posted a few photos on the MITM and my personal FaceBook pages. Giddyup Mikey & I even got to have lunch with Dave Van Dyke before the conference, which was attended by close to 200 enthusiastic students of ACIM.

Recent Radio/Webcast Interviews/Podcasts/Videos

I’ve been updating the GeometryCode Events page with upcoming, ongoing, and past radio and internet interviews, presentations, and more. (The majority of the content I share in these events is about non-dual metaphysics, and becoming ever more so.)
Among the recent past interviews I’ve participated in (with free audio archives online that you can listen to) are:

… and many more on the Events page.
I always enjoy talking about the non-dual Metaphysics, Psychology, Symbolism, Philosophy and more contained within the book “The Geometry Code: Universal Symbolic Mirrors of Natural Laws Within Us; Friendly Reminders of Inclusion to Forgive the Dreamer of Separation” which is available here.

ACIM Resources, Events, Musings from you!

Please let me know 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 (among other things) is a venue for conversations, so I eagerly encourage and await more contributions from kindred students of the One 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 mostly ACIM-related),
Twitter and
YouTube.
If you aren’t already receiving this automatically in your email, you can subscribe here for free.
Eternal smilezenhugs to all! 🙂
ACIMblog star image

Judgment, beliefs and healing – Dave Van Dyke

What judgment does to the mind: 

To clarify: judgment can have a few different meanings.  Here I am not talking about “being judgmental” (where we are deliberately tearing down someone’s self worth).  I am talking about judgment as an self-bestowed ability to determine the meaning (Reality) of something – a situation, an object, an action, a conversation, etc.).

Judgment is the mechanism that has “destroyed” our awareness of oneness.  Through judgment (applying a meaning to something), and that meaning becoming a belief, a fragmented perception of Truth is created.  This process creates an entire structure of beliefs each one proceeding logically from its parent belief (which may be insane).  As long as we continue to believe that we have the ability to judge accurately and then proceed to trust in this “ability”, we reinforce false ideas so that they obscure the Truth. This eventually leads us to a very unhappy place.  At that point we become willing to allow our own thinking to be replaced by the Holy Spirit’s guidance.  We may even come to the realization that we can’t judge anything accurately which gives the Holy Spirit its greatest opportunity to replace our thought system with Love.

To judge is to determine, through a decision, the meaning (Reality) of something. The meaning we have assigned to it may be erroneous.  In fact, since the most basic premise of the egoic mind is that we are separated beings, all ego reasoning will proceed from that false premise and extend to a false conclusion. Once we decide that something has a certain meaning, we will believe in the reality of that meaning unless evidence to the contrary becomes apparent to us.  When the ego’s sense of “self” is at stake, we may not even acknowledge evidence that tells us our beliefs are false because it would invalidate us.

Each judgment does two things: it validates the idea that we CAN judge accurately and, to the degree that our judgment is false, creates a belief in the erroneous meaning we have applied to the situation.  But the judgment applied to Reality soon entraps the one who judges and s/he becomes subject to the reality s/he creates through belief. This is the difference between the ego’s judgments and Truth.  The Truth makes one free by judging FOR US and judging truly.  Thinking that we have the wisdom to judge on our own puts a silent shield before the light of Truth.  As I said, this traps us within our beliefs because they silently (and seemingly without consequence) substitute for Reality.

To maintain our false beliefs only requires our unwillingness (or unawareness) to question them.  Usually we will only question the validity of a belief once we feel it prevents us from having Peace.  God’s intention for us (at least according to the spiritual literature I have read) is to listen to the inspiration of our Source and let it move us toward our own Worth and Wholeness on a moment to moment basis.  The egoic mind, on the other hand, can become a mechanical system of beliefs and reactions in which Spirit no longer dwells.  This is what can happen through using and trusting our own judgment.  When we teach ourselves what the “truth” is, we replace Truth.  The answer is to learn that we do NOT know the meaning of things and to begin to listen for the intuition that whispers to us.

The Course in Miracles says that this “reality” we find ourselves in was over millions of years ago.  This makes sense.  We are living in a memory kept alive by recycling old beliefs, thoughts, and feelings. True Life is flowing through our minds at this moment (God’s Voice speaks to me throughout the day) but if we are living within the confines of our old beliefs, we cannot hear the Voice of inspiration that would free us.  If you look at this plane of existence, there seems to be activity but it is activity without any meaning !  If there IS meaning, it is that we are learning that we don’t value the ego and we want to go Home.  For the most part, human “life” is just a re-applying of our beliefs and protecting the ego values we hold dear. The result of this is that we are strengthening the false concepts that keep us from knowing the Truth and being a part of Love’s Grace.

The fear of looking at beliefs: 

Beliefs are just ideas.  But the ideas we believe about ourselves, about our reality, have monumental significance imbedded in them and therefore a huge consequence in examining them.  It is like shaking the foundation of our house.  Everything in the house will also shake !  It is no wonder we are hesitant to examine our beliefs because the ego is certain this will reveal that it does not exist !  Fortunately this examination does not bring death.  As we begin to look at our false beliefs we utlimately find that it brings more Freedom and Life.  We do not have to know what to do with our false beliefs once we discover them.  If we had the conscious awareness of that degree of wisdom, we wouldn’t need healing in the first place.  All we need to do is to be aware of the belief and ask the Holy Spirit for healing.  Sometimes a situation or a relationship reveals something that we do NOT want to admit to.  In this case we may not be able to find any willingness to be healed…but maybe we can be willing to BE willing…sometime in the future…say 120 years from now  (:O)  That’s OK !  The Holy Spirit has no judgments about us.  We are accepted just as we are.

The process of Trust: 

Once we decide that above all we want Peace, we begin a journey backward in our psyche to remove the root beliefs that caused our misery.  While the end result IS Peace the journey can be unpleasant, but so is pulling out a splinter!  If you know the splinter has to come out (or it will become infected), then you will allow the doctor to do whatever s/he needs to in order to get the job done.  It is much the same with the Holy Spirit.

Our mind may feel like chaos during the healing process.  Things may seem worse before they seem better but remember what is happening:  It is as if you built your house on a bad foundation.  The house has to be torn down so a strong foundation can be built.  The secret to this process is, when the going gets tough, trust MORE not LESS.  Be GLAD that your mind is in turmoil – the Holy Spirit is WORKING ! You ARE being healed!!  Remember also that there CANNOT be anything beyond the Holy Spirit’s power to heal.  Success is guaranteed !  That is a fact !  You can remind yourself of this in confidence because it is the Truth.

As we first begin to trust we will probably find that we have good(high) days and bad(low) days in a cycle.  We will notice both our highs and our lows gradually get higher.  Most people I have talked to can verify that this process is “normal”.  Always remember to keep your desire for Peace foremost in your mind so that you stay surrendered to the work of the Holy Spirit.

I hope this has been helpful,
Dave Van Dyke

July 2012 ACIMblog bulletin

Non-Dual Metaphysics (and sacred geometry) Presentation in Palo Alto, Calif. 27Jul2012

I’m giving a Friday evening talk on non-dual metaphysics in the form of a multimedia presentation on The Geometry Code sponsored by the Foundation for Mind-Being Research (FMBR) at the Unity Community Church, Y.E.S. room, 3391 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto, CA.

Non-Dual Metaphysics (and sacred geometry) Workshop in Palo Alto, Calif. 28Jul2012

I’m also giving a Saturday (all day) workshop on non-dual metaphysics in the form of a multimedia presentation (and some “hands on” sacred geometry), sponsored by the Foundation for Mind-Being Research (FMBR) at Integrated Healing Arts, 4153 El Camino Way, Palo Alto, CA. Here’s a flyer with all the details.

Non-Dual Metaphysics (and sacred geometry) Presentation in San Francisco, Calif. 27Jul2012

I’m also giving a Saturday afternoon presentation at the 2012 Froebel USA Conference on The Geometry of Interconnectedness and Inclusion; registration info here.


Kenneth Bok interview: A Course in Miracles & Sacred Geometry? on the ACIM Explained YouTube series

Kenneth Bok interview: A Course in Miracles & Sacred Geometry? on the ACIM Explained YouTube series

Check out Ken Bok’s interview of Bruce Rawles on (ACIM Explained).
I recommend all of Ken’s engaging engaging and thoughtful interviews about ACIM.

The peace of the Father – an article by Sally McKirgan

Many nondual spiritual traditions tell us life is an illusion, a dream. A Course In Miracles is a nondual teaching that says we review a journey that was over long ago. Not only is the journey over but our true identity, as spirit, resides at home in heaven and is one with God. Life in the illusion seems otherwise.
Every day we hear about disasters around the world. more….

Judgment, beliefs and healing – an article by Dave Van Dyke

To clarify: judgment can have a few different meanings. Here I am not talking about “being judgmental” (where we are deliberately tearing down someone’s self worth). I am talking about judgment as an self-bestowed ability to determine the meaning (Reality) of something – a situation, an object, an action, a conversation, etc.).
Judgment is the mechanism that has “destroyed” our awareness of oneness. Through judgment … more….

ACIM Gather program continues on Friday afternoons

My ACIM Gather program (formerly on Tuesday evenings) is now on Friday afternoons. After reading Kenneth Wapnick’s brilliant Journey Through The Workbook of ACIM some months ago, I recently started reading his similarly outstanding Journey Through The Manual (JTTM) of ACIM. I have also recently started sharing some brief quotes (mostly from my daily reading of this book) on my frequent FaceBook status updates and recent tweets on Twitter. You can see a few of the most recent tweets in the right-hand sidebar on each page of this site. I’ve shared online on ACIM Gather for several weeks now (with super support from Dov Fishman)… It’s lots of fun. Please join in the conversation when you can on Fridays from 1:30-2 PM Mountain Time. To listen to ACIM Gather on Paltalk Express (and optionally participate interactively), create a free Paltalk Express account, then login, search for ACIM Gather, and listen to (and chat via your keyboard with if you’re interested) ACIM-related hosts 24/7. Here is the weekly ACIM Gather schedule. You can also listen to the ACIM Gather programming (LOTS of great ACIM programming 24/7!) here.

New ACIM studies book available

The new book: The Geometry Code: Universal Symbolic Mirrors of Natural Laws Within Us; Friendly Reminders of Inclusion to Forgive the Dreamer of Separation by Bruce Rawles (with a Foreward by Gary Renard) became available on Tuesday June 5th.

Don’t let the word “Geometry” in the title scare you off! While there is a backdrop of geometric symbols in this book, they are used merely to provide outside pictorial reminders of the inward condition of choosing our shared Teacher of Kindness… or, as is often the case, gently nudge us to let go of our own hopeless yet silly dualistic notions, fantasies, special attachments and aversions. The book also draws on the ancient Hermetic Laws, which again, are used solely for the purpose of memory aids to bring to the Inclusive Spirit within to show us how our personal interpretations are never going to work, but those brought to the eternal Truth of the Being we all have in common will always restore our minds to wholeness and peace.

Learn more about the book here…
The Geometry Code: Universal Symbolic Mirrors of Natural Laws Within Us; Friendly Reminders of Inclusion to Forgive the Dreamer of Separation by Bruce Rawles (front cover)

ACIM Resources, Events, Musings from you!

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