Nov 7, 2002
T2.II The Atonement as Defense

Good evening. I welcome all of you, as well as those who are joining us on the Internet.

And I’m going to ask a question. Can anyone think of a way if you’re in a room all by yourself … let’s start over. If you are in a room all by yourself, can you think of a way to express affection?

I would say just feel it, or believe that it’s just a real thing. And then just go with that. Just have belief in it. Believe that affection is something that’s good and that comes from the Divine Source. And have trust in that.1

But how would you express it?

I suppose by feeling it, by … I would feel affection for myself being there in that room. I suppose affection for the room itself, or for whatever I could see.

Anyone else?

I’m finding that I can’t feel alone in a room anymore. It’s not something that I feel anymore. I feel like I’m always accompanied.

But the question was, “How would you express affection?”

How can you be in a room alone? [some audience laughter]

[pause] If you express affection in a room that you’re experiencing yourself alone in, you’re doing it in your imagination, just like the experience of being alone in the room.

So, you are in a room that no one else is in. You are alone in a room, but you’re not alone. How do you express affection?

With you, a lot of the time.

That is Love.

How do you express affection?

How ‘bout since really we are Mind but we’re not Awake yet, and we experience thinking still. And I have a feeling that you’re maybe driving at the fact that not to entertain thoughts about any other that wouldn’t support the highest good about that other, no matter what. No matter what the temptation might be to think of others, because we’re all experiencing something, you know, in terms of relationships with each other that sometimes goes smoothly and sometimes don’t.

And if you’re in a room alone, you’re probably somehow experiencing either thinking, or a meditative state where you’re trying not to think. And in that, thoughts are going to be coming and going, more than likely. And when they might arise in the form of anything that doesn’t support the best in a Brother or Sister, no matter what you’re experiencing, you know, and so-called “illusion,” the struggle of life, you know, the unawakened state, and the temptation to buy into fear-driven motivation that might, you know, arise out of difficulties or conflicts that, whether they’re yours, or, you know, thoughts coming from you from another, not to be tempted to believe anything that wouldn’t suggest what would be reminiscent or representational of the Christ. Because that’s what we would want to have being known about our self. So how could you expect to have that if you weren’t willing to extend that?

And how would you extend it in a room all by yourself?

Yeah. Well, again it … I’m talking about Mind, because I don’t know any other way you mean if you’re by yourself. If you are by yourself, he’s saying.

[in the background] It won’t work.

Yes.

Yes.

If you are by yourself.

Yes.

[in the background] You can’t express affection.

Well, I believe in our Mind we hold thoughts, you know. And to exercise utilizing the Mind, good use of the Mind, you know, proper use of the Mind, would not be to think and, you know, of another in any way that did not support the Truth about them. And you’ve given us enough information to know that the Truth about everyone is that they are the Christ, no matter what it looks like, or no matter what their behavior might suggest otherwise. So …

[in the background] It’s all a matter if they’re in the room or not.

So no matter if they’re in the room with you or not, whoever it might be that you might be having relationships with, you are connected to them, even though they don’t seem to be in the room with you.

So when you say “in the room by yourself,” Mark is saying that’s impossible, right? But in fact we experience ourselves that way, and we experience the thing of separation, which is what is the Atonement was there to heal, which we haven’t caught up with yet.

I will say something that everyone else won’t have an understanding of. But tonight you sound just like Matt. Do you catch the similarity?

Right. So are you meaning that … yeah, I know what you mean by that. So, but I’m trying to express something, and I think you know what I’m trying to say, Raj. Don’t you?

Oh, I do indeed.

But you’re telling me now that I’m not saying it very well [audience laughter] because of what you just said, you know.

I will come back to this.

It sounds like a correction.

You will understand.

I’m willing to be corrected.

You will understand more in just a moment.

[to someone else] You had your hand up? Wait for the microphone.

Okay. My first impulse was singing came to mind. [Someone in the background said, “Yes.”] And that’s all. [laughing] I don’t have any way to analyze it. But that’s what came to my mind was just singing as an expression of affection.

[to someone else] And did … you had your hand up?

That’s it. That’s simple. I love to be alone in the room, because then I can express my affection for what I’m feeling. I sing. I dance. It’s simple for me. And sometimes it’s easier to express affection alone in that room.

Well, without any judgment in what I’m going to say, I will say, is there any wonder that Atonement hasn’t occurred? [some audience laughter]

Does anyone remember from last week what the Atonement principle is?

Correction of errors.

No.

The Atonement principle is Love. And Atonement is an Act of Love–an ACT. Not a thought, but an act.

So affection is love acted out, you might say. And there’s no way to act out love when you are in isolation. And there is no way to engage in an Act of Love in your Mind. In your Mind, you are being Love. Do you see the difference?

Again, Atonement is meaningless without involvement. One-on-one, one-to-another, back and forth in acts of affection.

[in the background] So are you saying that we leave the room?

Whoops.

[with the mic now] So you’re saying that you should leave the room.

[in the background] Or bring someone in.

Or bring some, or let… yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

Ah! Indeed. Yes.

Or leave the isolation.

Yes.

Right.

Open the door and invite someone in, or go out where others are, where you can engage in acts of affection, where you can engage in an Act of Love.

There’s something that Paul learned early on as part of the teaching of Christian Science which he continues to use, or remind himself of, at the beginning of every Gathering, or every conversation, with Raj. It says this: “Thy Will be done.”

What follows is an explanation of the meaning of that sentence in the Lord’s Prayer.

“Thy Will be done. Let the reign (r-e-i-g-n) of Divine Truth, Life and Love be established in me and rule out of me all self-will. And may Thy Word enrich the affections of all mankind and govern them.”

So the first part of that statement says it’s an invitation that each one of you can make–an invitation, you might say, to let the Atonement principle in.

“Let the reign of Divine Truth, Life and Love …”–not the ego’s sense of truth, life, truth, and love–” … be established in me and rule out of me all self-will.”–all that is the ego.

But in a way that would be selfish only to consider yourself. To make it whole, the last part needs to be added. “And may Thy Word enrich the affections …”–of everyone else–”… of all mankind and govern them.”

So, what we’re doing here whenever we gather together is going through a process of enriching our affections, so that in so doing you are in a position to bless all mankind.

So, I will keep saying it over and over and over, as long as it takes for you to really grasp the fact that none of what we’re talking about is a head-trip. It’s not intellectual. It’s got to be translated into actions, one-to-another.

Yes, in the privacy of your room, you can be the Presence of Love that blesses others. But if when you’re with others, you haven’t learned how to be the Presence of Love, it won’t mean diddly shit. It’s very easy when you’re in the privacy of your room, and you’re not confronted with a Brother and whatever his behavior might be at the moment, to listen for the Voice for Truth within, to learn What Is True About Your Brother, and hold him or her in that esteem. But it’s when you’re face-to-face with your Brother, or your Sister, that the call for being the Presence of Love in terms of your behavior comes into play. And that’s where the world changes. You see?

So, let’s not get too lofty. Let’s not get so lofty and spiritual and metaphysical and intellectual that we forget where all of this is at; where it is that the transformation will occur. It’s in the willingness to have your vision transformed right while your Brother, or Sister, is in your face, so that you can behave expressing real acts of love, that affection is embodied. And that’s where you see the effect of the miracle.

So, let’s start in the book. And we’ll start here.

The Atonement is a total commitment.2

Okay. I will put it this way. In it’s fulfilled form, it is total commitment. Your acts of love become uninterruptedly constant.

Continue.

You may still think this is associated with loss, a mistake all the separated Sons of God make in one way or another. It is hard to believe a defense that cannot attack is the best defense.

Now, let’s remember that this section that we’re reading is called, “The Atonement as Defense.” So that’s why we’re talking about defense here.

Continue.

This is what is meant by “the meek shall inherit the earth.” They will literally take it over because of their strength.

It’s sort of like “Silly Putty.” If you’ve ever had “Silly Putty,” you can roll it into a ball and then you can set it on a flat surface, and because it doesn’t have much of the memory of form that I was talking about last week with the glasses that have frames that the memory of its shape is an integral part of it. When you twist it [the frames], it comes back into its shape because it doesn’t forget. “Silly Putty” has no memory. And so you form it into a ball and you set it there, and you come back the next day and it’s flattened out like a pancake.

“The meek will inherit the earth” in that way. In their defenselessness, in their willingness to, I’m going to say, employ the Atonement as the governing principle of their life, they will simply relax so completely, you might say, that they cover the earth, embracing it totally.

Continue.

A two-way defense is inherently weak precisely because it has two edges, and can be turned against you very unexpectedly. This possibility cannot be …

… let me interrupt.

Whenever you have two edges, two points of view, it constitutes prime soil for argument, and disagreement, and attempts to influence. But that which has no defense whatsoever, can’t be attacked and can’t see attack. It can’t be harmed.

It’s like being the loop side of two pieces of Velcro with all of its loops cut. It doesn’t matter how many other strips come by that are the hooks, there’s no way to engage the loops that have been cut, and therefore there can’t be any tension, there can’t be any dissonance between the two.

Continue …

This possibility cannot be controlled except by miracles.

That is the possibility of having two opposing sides that can engage with each other with some potential for success at manipulation or control.

Start that sentence over. This possibility.

This possibility cannot be controlled except by miracles.

The sudden shift of perception that causes you to be able to be the Presence of Love and see with Love, and therefore act with Love, so that your behavior is an expression of affection.

Continue …

The miracle turns the defense of Atonement to your real protection, and as you become more and more secure you assume your natural talent of protecting others, knowing yourself as both a brother and a Son.

So, Atonement is a defense against what? Just think about it for a moment. [pause]

When you … I did use the word “against.” But when you think of the word “defense,” you naturally think of it as defense against something. But you can stand in defense of Truth. You can stand in defense of Love. When the temptation comes for you to become reactive and angry, or jealous, or hateful, or whatever, you can stand in defense of Love, and choose for It, and engage with It, and let It fill you with enriched affection that you are able to express, instead of becoming the mouthpiece for the ego. You see?

So Atonement stands in defense of What’s Real. It does not stand defended against what is unreal. And because it stands in defense of What Is Real, it doesn’t occasion conflict. If you stand in defense against what is unreal, you will have conflict.

If your prayer is, “Thy Will be done. Let the reign of Divine Truth, Divine Life, and Divine Love be established in me,” what are you doing? You are standing in defense of Divine Truth, Life and Love. And you are standing in defense of your capacity to experience and honor it, and nothing else.

“Let it be established in me.” Of course, it’s already established in you, because you’re nothing less than God Expressed, and All That God Is, is already established in you right at this moment. But you’re saying, your prayer is acknowledging that and saying, “Let it be established in me.” It’s like let it be established in me to me, so that I’m more fully aware of it than I have been.

Let it be established in me and rule out of me my inclination to use self-will; my inclination to think; my inclination to reason; my inclination to become angry; my inclination to interpret everything according to my present sense of things, regardless of What God Is Being There. You see?

“Let it be established in me and rule out of me all self-will.” Why? So that my affections might be enriched, and therefore be transformational, rather than my willy-nilly running down my habitual road of reaction, and willfulness, and the right I think I have to interpret everything the way I want to interpret it. You see?

So Atonement is not a defense against something. It stands in defense of Reality. It’s a choice each of you has to consciously make and then act out. You have to let it take form in action, which is affection. Again, no matter how loving, how truly connected with the Father you might be so that you are perceiving truly about everything and everyone, if you cannot engage face-to-face with a Brother with affection, there is no Atonement.

So, now you know where it’s at. And because you do, your participation in the Atonement will be easier for you, because you won’t sit in a room by yourself being the Presence of Love, thinking that’s all there is to it, and neglecting to bring it into your actions. Once you begin to bring it into your actions, and your desire is to act it out more and more consistently, the world is going to see more evidence of Atonement.

And this book that we’re reading and what’s in it, has been around long enough for there to be more evidence of Atonement. I am not chastising anyone. I’m saying that what is needed for transformation is present, and the means of embodying it–good choice of words–the means of embodying it are present. [walking around the room to each person] Right there. Right there. Embody. Body. Body. Two together expressing affection. Embodiment. And I’m not talking about sex. Body. Body. Embodiment. Body. Body. It’s not an illusion. Love it. Use it. Body. Affection. Affection. Not a slap, but a caress. Caring. You know, take the time to touch, to care, to express thoughtfulness with your bodies. With your bodies. With your bodies. Embody it.

Take the time to mean it. It can’t be done at a distance. Acts of Love. Acts of getting close enough, defenselessly enough, that hearts can touch, because the goal is for hearts to touch. You see?

The words here don’t mean anything until you catch the spirit of it, of them, and extend them to each other. And where it needs to be expressed and embodied most is where a hatred seems to be active, whether it’s a brand-new hatred, or an ancient hatred. And like I pointed out last week, an ancient hatred is a current ignorance clothed in the idea that it’s ancient. [laughs]

You’re all watching, everyone on the globe is watching aggressive sparring going on–the embodiments of ancient hatreds by a brand-new people. There’s nothing ancient about it, except that the current generation has been told by the one just behind it, how they should currently think. And they have justified the current thinking on what the generation before thought, and the generation before thought, and the generation before thought. And yet, what’s being embodied in the world today is nothing less than a brand-new generation, and one that’s just behind it, and maybe a few left over from the one just behind that, acting out a current willfulness; not a current love.

“I hate your guts because your great, great, great, great, great grandfather did something horrible to my great, great, great, great, great grandfather. And I won’t forgive you for what he did.” So we have an obvious circumstance where enrichment of affection is called for.

Now if you don’t like what you see going on in the world, then stop doing it in your individual experience, because that, you can do something about. And the acts of affection that you engage in will become the leaven that leavens the whole lump.

Again, affection is an act of love. An act of love is an embodiment of Love. And you will have to use your bodies, and not just your mind. Let your bodies become the brush that paints loveliness upon your relationships. Let your bodies be the brushes that paint healing in your relationships. And remember that if your bodies are not being used, you will not have the concrete evidence of Atonement, no matter how blissed-out you are all alone in your room being “the presence of love.”

Do you know that I love you, all of you? And so I talk straight with you so that you won’t suffer from confusion, and won’t think you’re doing everything that needs to be done when you’re only doing half of what needs to be done.

Was there a hand?

Are you talking like Mother Theresa? Or more sublime than that? Or more sublime working towards like Mother Theresa?

I’m not sure how much more sublime one can get than Mother Theresa.

So we should make that as our goal?

No. That’s a concept. So if you’re going to make that your goal, then you’re probably going to have to find as many videos of Mother Theresa as you can, because you can’t go and observer her directly and see what it was that she did, and how did it look, and so that you can maybe get a feeling for what it was she was about.

Well, I mean the full immersion of herself into her world–caring for the sick, caring for the down-trodden, almost … well, to what we rate as a very high degree, which is why we hold her in high esteem and high regard.

Yes.

I guess that goes back to the first sentence: The Atonement is total commitment.

Yes. Total commitment to what?

To the giving of acts of love.

But what is it that you have to be committed to in order to be in a position to engage in acts of love?

Interaction. Relationship.

No. Each of you, without your connection with God, do not know how to Love. You don’t know What Love Is.

So, because I’ve used a phrase that is a part of the teaching of Christian Science, I’m going to use another statement that Mary Baker Eddy used. She said, “Follow me only in so far as I follow Christ.” Now what does that mean? It means, how are you going to know whether she’s following Christ unless you go within yourself like she did, or like she was doing when she was here, let us say. You won’t know whether she’s following Christ if you are not following her example and going within and asking the Christ, “What is the Truth? What should I do? What’s the next appropriate step?”

So, if you’re going to follow somebody, like Mother Theresa, you’d better do what she did, and that was she talked with God all day long. Her commitment was to let God shine through–not a human being, not an ego–so that her human being became illuminated with God.

The Atonement is a total commitment. Yes. And Atonement … and Atonement means an Act of Love. So Atonement means commitment to Eternal Acts of Love.

So, you’ve got to love your Brother and your Sister enough to not honor who they are presenting themselves as, but with them in mind specifically, one-on-one, go within and ask God, “What is the Truth here about my friend? Reveal to me the Divine Presence that has to be here in order for me to see something less because my vision isn’t complete.”

You must use each other as your reason for turning to God, so that in turning to God you are blessed with Vision that causes your experience of your Brother or Sister who drove you to God [audience amused] and be able to give back the Gift that God has given you. And now we have an Act of Love that came from God, that was started by your willingness to have an object of your affection. And use that object of your affection, even if he or she has been a real bitch or bastard, to use that one as a reason for asking to see the Truth and turning to God, so that you might have the influx of the Gift of Vision that is imbued with Love, and which, because it has infilled you, causes you to send out Messengers of Love spontaneously, without a single thought of premeditation, that will go out to your Brother or Sister, who is your reason to turn to God, who you are caring enough to ask God about, and bring back to you confirmation of the Loveliness, the Divinity, the Innocence, the Perfection of your Brother or Sister.

Do you see? Now you understand what I mean.

Yes.

The commitment to your Brother or Sister to engage in an Act of Love means that you are going to turn to God to learn of your Brother or Sister.

And not decide what the Act of Love is before it occurs.

Absolutely. Because until you are connected with God, you don’t have the foggiest idea of What Love Is. Because you and everyone else are operating on the basis of your mutually-agreed-upon definitions of love, and those mutually-agreed-upon definitions of love have nothing to do with doing something for someone else. They have only to do with getting something yourself–security where it doesn’t exist to be had; safety where it doesn’t exist to be had; success where it doesn’t exist to be had.

Right?

So just allow these Acts of Love to manifest wherever we find ourselves in our own lives at all times.

Yes. Making sure, having a deep commitment to not engage in those Acts of Love frivolously, haphazardly, offhandedly. There must be a deep commitment to connecting securely and solidly with the Holy Spirit, or with Me, or with your Guide, or with God, so that you can feel the utter appropriateness of whatever the act turns out to be; so that you can feel the Divinity of it; not the rightness of it.

Giving up our own accountability for the Act of Love.

Absolutely. Because that which feels accountable is not the Divine One You Are, but the ego. Absolutely.

So we’re back to just letting go. Letting God.

Right.

Not fighting the impulses.

That’s right.

When it says here, “the miracle turns the defense of Atonement to your real protection,” is what that means, by following Guidance, then you’re not hooked by the ego, and that is your real protection?

Exactly.

And then it says, “and as you become more and more secure, you assume your natural talent of protecting others,” that’s witnessing?

That’s witnessing. And that’s engaging in affection.

Affection.

Acts of Love.

And so by doing that, you’re also bringing the energy there which helps protect them from getting hooked by their ego.

Exactly.

Thank you.

And it also [laughing] protects them from you.

From trying to Mother Theresa them.

That’s right. [audience laughter] That’s right.

Last week you talked about the treasures, and what we value, what we treasured, and how much we treasured it. And then you threw in the “why.” That’s what this is about. That’s the connectedness to the Atonement, to the affection. That’s why.

That is a good way of putting it. Yes.

And it was amazing to me as I worked with that over and over again, how I found I consistently would go to something I could get out of it. It just amazed me that I was still so rooted in the idea of getting. And when you put it like you did, it just bring me right up to the startling-ness of that, over and over again. How it would start to come in as some cozy little concept, and then when you got it right down, there it was–trying to get something again.

And when you first asked that about reaching out in the room, what came to me the first thing, was really clear, was like reach for my cell phone, which I thought was a smart-assed answer, but it really was the only answer. You’ve got to reach out to somebody else.

And when I’m sitting there and feeling comfortable, connected to the Love that you and what I get connected with provides, you’ve been over and over clarifying that that’s … that’s not where it ends.

Indeed.

This is really good stuff.

Well, it’s Reality. And Reality is good stuff. The Way It Works is good stuff, even though, as it says, to the ego it seems to be a loss.

Let us continue …

THE ALTAR OF GOD

The Atonement can be accepted within you only by the releasing of the inner light.

We really have discussed this. The question is, “Where are you going to get the inner Light?”

Continue.

Since the separation, defenses have been used almost entirely to defend against the Atonement, and thus maintain the separation. This is generally seen as a need to protect the body. The many body fantasies in which minds engage arise from the distorted belief that the body can be used as a means for attaining “atonement.”

Yes. Now, do you think that’s what I was describing? No.

The body cannot be used as a means for attaining the Atonement. The Atonement principle is Love, and Atonement is an Act of Love arising out of the Living Presence of the principle in you. Thus, the body does not become a means of attaining the Atonement, but as a means of expressing it, as a means of giving it.

Do you see the difference?

Continue …

Perceiving the body as a temple is only the first step in correcting this distortion, because it alters only part of it. It does recognize that Atonement in physical terms is impossible. The next step, however, is to realize that a temple is not a structure at all. Its true holiness lies at the inner altar around which the structure is built. The emphasis on beautiful structures is a sign of the fear of Atonement, and an unwillingness to reach the altar itself.

Now this is a metaphor. And you need to know it. And once you see the metaphor, it will be utterly clear.

The emphasis on beautiful structures …

Well, when you read those words, “beautiful structures,” and you have just been talking about temples, immediately gothic cathedrals, modern cathedrals, stained-glass windows, exquisite pipe organ pipes come to mind. When it’s like, hmmm, how can that be a sign of the fear of Atonement? But, if the body–and I’m not going to come around and tap everyone’s knee again–it’s a temple. Well, it makes a lot more sense if you say the emphasis on beautiful bodies is a sign of the fear of Atonement, and an unwillingness to reach the Altar itself. It’s easier to see that a preoccupation with presenting a good human form is a good way of covering up your heart. If you’re connected to your heart, you will be the Presence of Love unshaven, hair unkempt; not caring at all about a beautiful structure, a beautiful presentation. You see?

The next sentence says:

The real beauty of the temple cannot be seen with the physical eye.

So preoccupation with the form, preoccupation with the exterior, is indeed the way you cover up and make safe, make safely hidden the Love That You Are, the Love that it is your Function to be embodying.

Continue …

Spiritual sight, on the other hand, cannot see the structure at all because it is perfect vision. It can, however, see the altar with perfect clarity.

I’m going to alter that slightly. It may see the structure, but that is not where its attention is drawn. Its attention is drawn to the reason it’s there, which is to embrace the Altar.

Let me put it this way. It’s a rainy day. You’ve agreed to meet someone on the corner of an intersection. The corner has no awnings. The buildings have no awnings. And so you’re standing there under your umbrella. And your friend comes hurriedly walking down the street, sees you on the corner, is glad to know that you are dry, but other than that, could care less about the umbrella, because you are who your friend came to see. In effect, your friend wouldn’t see the umbrella, because the umbrella isn’t what he came to meet.

Likewise, spiritual sight comes to be in communion with the Altar in the temple, and therefore doesn’t notice the temple, because the temple isn’t what it came to see. You see?

Continue …

For perfect effectiveness the Atonement belongs at the center of the inner altar, where it undoes the separation and restores the wholeness of the mind. Before the separation the mind was invulnerable to fear, because fear did not exist.

Interesting. Because fear did not exist, it was invulnerable to fear. How can you be invulnerable to something that doesn’t exist?

Before the separation the mind was invulnerable to fear, because fear did not exist.

It is put this way so that you might grasp that invulnerability regained, will not be some ultimate form of defense that nothing can stand up to successfully. The invulnerability that your willingness to become defenseless will uncover to you, will be an invulnerability that doesn’t require power to keep you safe.

We must talk about invulnerability, because from your present frame of reference, you feel vulnerable. And you feel that the vulnerability is part of the human condition and is unavoidable. From the ego’s vantage point, invulnerability must be the result of a good defense, of armaments, of moats, and castle walls, and so on. And so it’s natural to assume that as you move forward in your Awakening, your Divine Invulnerability will be some form of ultimate defense, but it isn’t.

You are invulnerable, because in the absence of the choice for defense, that which you appeared to need defense against, undergoes an alteration in your mind, a sudden shift of perception, that allows you to see What Is Truly There and be infilled with appreciation for What Is Truly There, and thus engage in the Atonement, which will transform the world. And you will come to an experiential appreciation of the meaning of the statement, “In my defenselessness my safety lies.”

In my defenselessness, my invulnerability lies. In my defenselessness, I am refusing to be in a polarized state of mind. And in the absence of polarities, I am unable to see conflict. And in my inability to see conflict, the Presence of God can become obvious to me. And I can rejoice at the Saint, who I thought was my irritating brother.

And you know what? When you’re not seeing an irritating brother there because you truly are seeing the Saint that he is, the Presence of God that he is, your bristles, your hackles, your quills, lay down. And you are no longer threatening to your Brother. And the genuineness of your benign-ness can be recognized by your Brother, so that he can say, “Wow. I never thought he would relax so that we could just relate with each other.” And he will dare to relate with you in a new way, because you dared to let your affections be enriched.

Spiritual Sight cannot see the structure at all because it is Perfect Vision. Spiritual Sight is.

It can, however, see the altar with perfect clarity.

And seeing the Altar in your Brother, seeing your Brother’s heart allows you to watch with him a moment, be with him a moment, while he thinks he is on his way to the crucifixion. The Bible says, I said, “Could you not watch with me?” You need to stand with each other. You need to be with others affectionately–with warmth, with defenselessness. And the only thing that will allow you to do that is if you’re willing to look at your Brother with Someone Who Is Awake, who can illuminate to you the loveliness of the bitch, or the loveliness of the bastard, and the lovableness of them both, and illuminate your capacity to love them right then and there, so that it is embodied.

We will let things rest there for tonight–a wonderful resting place.

I thank you for wanting to have your affections enriched. It makes it a downright pleasure to be with you.

Thank you.

You are welcome.

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