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

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Gary Renard “Endless Now” seminar in Ashland, Oregon – Saturday July 17, 2010

Best-selling author of The Disappearance of the Universe and Your Immortal Reality, Gary Renard will be giving an all day seminar in Ashland, Oregon on Saturday, July 17, 2010 from 10AM-4PM (book-signing from 4-5PM) at the Best Western Windsor Inn. For more information, contact us via email, or phone 541-973-3512. To register, please mail a check for $75* to Elysian Publishing, POB 431, Ashland, Oregon 97520 and include your full name, email (very important since that’s how we’ll contact you primarily), phone number, address, and any other pertinent contact info or details. Gary’s seminars (his books, audios, videos, and work in general) get my highest recommendation! A required curriculum!

In order to encourage early registration, we’re offering the following discounts for those who send in payment before these 2010 dates:

register by Feb. 1: $45
register by Mar. 1: $50
register by Apr. 1: $55
register by May 1: $60
register by June 1: $65
register by July 1: $70
at the door: $75

Discounted lodging information for this event (first come, first serve) is here.

Here are more details about “The Endless Now”

Timeless, ageless beingness. Perfect unity with source. An experience of your true nature. This is how wisdom teacher and best-selling author Gary Renard describes what he calls -The Endless Now – and it’s an experience readily available to us all through the simple act of connecting with source.

Gary relates his personal story and we join him in remembering what it’s like to be pure spirit or love itself. You will learn how to break through all appearances including the false idea that we are separate from source – and consistently recognize what we truly are.

• True Meditation – rest in the perfect space of silence where you are one with your source and all is perfect exactly as it is.

• Place Holy Spirit in charge of your day and live each moment guided and directed from this pure space of wisdom, love, and compassion.

• Use forgiveness to release yourself from the false idea of separation from source and move into a consistent experience of truth and the endless now, out of which a high level of peace and skillfulness arises.

Jesus, Buddha and other Wisdom Masters walked and lived in the pure space of continuous connection with source – and reminded us that this is our natural state of being. Gary invites you to courageously unlearn the habits of the ego and experience life like the great spiritual masters – in eternal harmony and natural benefit of humanity. Gary offers a way of looking at the world that leads to the endless now and the full flowering of the human spirit.

An acclaimed teacher of A Course In Miracles, Gary underwent a powerful spiritual awakening in the early 1990s. As instructed by two ascended masters who appeared to him in the flesh, he wrote his first best-selling book, The Disappearance of the Universe, over a period of nine years. He was later guided to speak in public and has recently been described as one of the most interesting and courageous spiritual speakers in the world.

Gary has spoken in 41 states, 16 countries, and was the keynote speaker at the International A Course in Miracles Conferences in Salt Lake City and San Francisco. He is also the most recent recipient of the Infinity Foundation Spirit Award. The award is given to a person who has made a meaningful contribution to personal and spiritual growth. Past recipients include Dan Millman, Ram Dass, Gary Zukav, James Redfield and Neale Donald Walsch.

Here’s a Press Release (MSWord format) and a pdf version and a printable jpg flyer about the seminar and a pdf flyer about the seminar and a version of the flyer as 4 mini-posters.

I’m enthused to report that again, by popular request, Gary is offering a third seminar in Ashland. Please spread the word to anyone you know who enjoys Gary’s work and/or A Course In Miracles; thanks! 🙂

If you are traveling from out of the area and need lodging info please contact Ed Karlovich at 541-646-8332. Some rooms at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites – Ashland (adjacent to the Windsor Inn) are reserved and available at discounted rates for attendees of Gary’s seminar. Group rates are available for direct booking through July 17 by following this link. Additional information with links is here.


Following Gary’s seminar, we have a potluck scheduled the same day at 6PM; the venue will also be the Best Western Windsor Inn (same room as the seminar, contrary to earlier messages which mentioned the Peace House.) All are invited, even if you can’t make it for the seminar.

Cindy Lora-Renard

Also, I am happy to report that we have a high probability that Gary’s wife Cindy Lora-Renard will also be present for this event. Cindy and Gary, in addition to roles that readers of Gary’s books are quite familiar with, are also both musicians and there are rumors that the seminar just might include a bit of music from them… We’ll see! 🙂

I had the pleasure of meeting Cindy (and her mother, both very wonderful folks!) in SF earlier this year when “Giddyup Mikey” (who posts the DU quote of the day on the DU Yahoo group) and I attended the ACIM conference there and saw Gary, Nouk & Tomas, Tom & Linda Carpenter, and so many more wonderful ACIM presenters and fellow students. Having BOTH Gary and Cindy with us in Ashland will be a real treat!

Arten & Pursah in training :-)

One more thing, don’t forget to check out Gary’s website, and his oh-so-fun podcasts with Gene Bogart. They’re free, fun and always full of forgiveness … no matter what the question!

If you want to automatically receive ACIM-related event news, updates and other non-dualistic musings, you might also want to subscribe to our email bulletin.

Tom and Linda Carpenter – Ashland, Oregon seminar – Aug. 29, 2009

“Mind makes forms the symbol of its thoughts so the world can become evidence of their reality.  The function of these symbols will bear witness to their purpose.   To not be misled by the appearance of the symbol is the function of forgiveness.” – Tom Carpenter

I’m extremely happy to share the news that Tom and Linda Carpenter will be giving an all day seminar in Ashland, Oregon on Saturday, August 29, 2009 from 10AM-4PM (book-signing from 4-5PM) at the Best Western Windsor Inn. The Carpenters will give an interactive talk about “Forgiveness: Innocence and Guilt.”

For more information, contact us via email, or phone 541-826-3583. To register, please mail a check for $45* to Elysian Publishing, POB 1515, Eagle Point, Oregon 97524 and include your full name, email (very important since that’s how we’ll contact you primarily), phone number, address, and any other pertinent contact info or details.

Dialogue On Awakening – Communion With a Loving Brother (and the Carpenter’s work in general) get my highest recommendation! I read Dialogue On Awakening years ago and it is one of my all time favorite books complementing A Course In Miracles. I had the pleasure of finally meeting Tom & Linda in San Francisco at the ACIM conference there earlier this year. Our local (Rogue Valley, Oregon) ACIM study groups have been watching and sharing inspirations from a wonderful DVD interview with Tom, Linda and Robert Holden, PhD entitled “A Dialogue On Forgiveness” which I also highly recommend.

* The cost will be $50 at the door, so save $5 by pre-registering today!

If you are traveling from out of the area and need lodging info please contact Ed Karlovich at 541-646-8332. A few rooms at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites – Ashland (adjacent to the Windsor Inn) are reserved and available at discounted rates for attendees of the Carpenter‘s seminar.

Here is a printable flyer as a full 8.5″ x 11″ poster and as 4 mini-posters and both pdf and MSWord versions of  a Press Release about this event.

If you want to automatically receive ACIM-related event news, updates and other non-dualistic musings, you might also want to subscribe to our email bulletin.

Stay tuned for more details!

The Leap! Movie DVD – highly recommended for your inner screenwriter

The Leap! Movie DVD

Last night (thanks to Bev and Don for hosting!) I watched “The Leap!” Movie DVD for a second time and found it even more inspiring. “The Leap!” Movie DVD presents a superb collection of interviews with folks like Gary Renard, Tom and Linda Carpenter, Lyn Corona, Peter Russell, Fred Alan WolfDan Millman, John Sherman, Joe Vitale, James Twyman, Puppetji (hilarious! 🙂 and many others who have explored the surrealistic notion (corroborated by modern physics) that the Universe is a mental fabrication, with lots of great metaphors, conversation and inspiring quotes and video. I think it picks up where “What the Bleep” left off. Highly recommended!