Jul 27, 2003
T4.2 The Ego and False Autonomy
Good afternoon. And good afternoon to everyone who is joining us on the internet as well. [dog barking loudly in distance] And our neighbor dog welcomes everyone. [audience laughter]
The big question that all of you have that plagues you throughout your life is, “Who am I?” And the second biggest question is “What am I?” And the third question is, “Why am I here?”
It should be becoming obvious to you why you have these questions. The simple fact is that if you have denied your Father, if you have denied your Source, you have denied that which gives you your Identity. Isn’t that simple? And so of course you’re going to say, “Who am I?”
The minute you said, “Father, I’d rather see it my way,” and you dissociated yourself from your Father, you dissociated yourself from the Experience of Who You Are. And so everything that has followed that decision has occurred to one who has no identity, he doesn’t know who he is, doesn’t know what he is, and doesn’t know why he is where he finds himself.
Many, many, many of you have the feeling of being a stranger in a strange land. You feel like you don’t really belong here. But when you say you don’t belong here, you mean in the world, in this life experience that’s going on all around you. When the real place that you are, and I use the word “real” loosely, when the real place you are is in the middle of the definitions you have given to everything you’re experiencing and the definition you have given yourself.
You are a stranger in a strange land. It’s the land of nod. It’s the land of imagination. It’s the made-up world and the made-up self. And instinctively you know that such an experience of ignorance is not natural to you. And yet you persist endlessly trying to find the answer to the question, “Who am I?” And you try to find the answer by refining your definitions, refining your definition of who you are and trying to improve it and trying to convince others of it so that they can give support to your newer and better belief about who you are, without realizing that the answer to the question lies in abandoning your definitions and reaching out to your Source again and connecting with your Source so that your Sonship, your Daughtership, can register with you once again. And in registering with you, providing you with the Experience of your Identity so that there’s no question about Who You Are or What You Are.
Isn’t that simple? It really is that simple.
Okay. I will start reading.
The Soul in its knowledge … 1
Or as I’ve said before Knowing …
… is unaware of the ego.
Who you really are is unaware of who you think you are. It’s like when you go to bed at night and you have a dream. You in the bed, the one and only real you, we’ll say, has no knowledge of a you, you are experiencing in the context of a fantasy, a dream. You are lying there, breathing deeply, relaxed, getting rest.
So, again …
The Soul in its knowledge is unaware of the ego. It does not attack it; it merely cannot conceive of it at all. While the ego is equally unaware of the Soul, it DOES perceive itself as rejected by “something” which is greater than itself. This is why self-esteem in ego terms MUST be a delusion. The creations of God do not create myths, although the creative efforts of man CAN turn to mythology.
It can do so, however, only under one condition; what man then makes is no longer creative.
And what’s the one condition? It can only happen under the condition that you have denied your Source and you have taken on the role of authorizer of the meaning of things, the definition of things. The only thing is that whatever you think you’re doing when you have dissociated yourself from your Source, accomplishes absolutely nothing.
When you have a dream at night and you plant a garden and water it and it grows and you pick a flower, has a garden gotten watered? Has a flower grown? Could you have picked that flower? No, nothing has happened except as, let us say, an imaginative film strip.
I’m continuing …
Myths are entirely perceptions…
Not knowledge, not knowing.
… and are so ambiguous in form and so characteristically good and evil in nature that the most benevolent of them is not without fearful components, if only by innuendo.
If only by innuendo. Hmm. Well, let’s put that into perspective. How many of you have awakened in the morning and before you move a muscle, you feel guilty. Not for any reason, but it’s just there. That’s by innuendo. It’s just a feeling that’s there for no apparent reason.
Now it’s important to pay attention to these feelings. The feeling of being guilty for no good reason, for no reason at all, the feeling of not knowing Who You Are, the feeling of not knowing What You Are, and the feeling of not knowing why you exist or why you’re here, these are clues. They’re very helpful clues. They are your innate capital “S” Sanity, the Sanity of the Divine One That You Are penetrating this dream, this fantasy you have created out of applying new definitions to the Kingdom of Heaven and the Son of God or Daughter of God That You Are. It’s your Sanity penetrating your dream reminding you that you’re attempting to do something you cannot really do and to abandon the project. You see?
Myths and magic are closely associated in that myths are usually related to the ego origins, and magic to the powers which the ego ascribes to itself. Every mythological system includes some account of “the creation,” and associates this with its particular perception of magic. The “battle for survival” …
Which is a bit of magic because it expresses a capacity you think you have to survive this hostile environment you find yourself in.
… is nothing more than the ego’s struggle to preserve itself …
And I’m interjecting here. Its struggle to preserve itself not in the hostile environment, but to preserve itself because it isn’t real in the first place and in order for it to seem to have persistence, its existence must be defended, reinforced.
The “battle for survival” is nothing more than the ego’s struggle to preserve itself and its interpretation of its own beginning. This beginning is always associated with physical birth…
And I’m going to interject here. This beginning is always associated with physical birth. It’s never associated with your having said, “Father, I am not going to pay any attention to the way You Are Being Things. I am going to give everything new definitions of my choosing so that I can enjoy being the authorizer of something.” So this beginning is never associated with what really started it all.
This beginning is always associated with physical birth, because no-one maintains that the ego existed before that point in time. The religiously ego-oriented believe that the Soul existed before and will continue to exist afterwards, after a temporary lapse in ego life. Some actually believe that the Soul will be punished for this lapse, even though in reality, it could not possibly know anything about it.
That’s like saying that when you go to sleep at night and have a dream and have a lapse of true self-awareness, that when you wake up in the morning you’re likely to be punished for having had this lapse of true self-awareness and perhaps having an enjoyable fantasy.
The term “salvation” does NOT apply to the Soul, which is not in danger, and does not need to be salvaged.
Interesting word “salvaged.” Salvation sounds so wonderful, but salvaged sounds like cutting torches and metal and, you know, tearing apart damaged ships and reducing them to their lowest common denominator and melting them down, et cetera. Something that occurs in a shipyard.
So what does salvation refer to when you think of it? You usually think of it as the salvation of who you think you are, that you will come into the experience of your salvation. But it’s very important, as I keep reiterating, to remember that right at this very moment in spite of your imaginative definitions and your distorted experience of Reality, You Are The Presence of God, You Are God Self-Expressed, and you have never for an instant stopped being that. It does not require salvation. And the ego will never ever be able to experience salvation because it’s just an imagination. So your task is not to improve your ego, but to abandon it so that there can be a return to the direct Experience of What and Who You Divinely Are Which Is The Expression of God, the Son or Daughter of God, for lack of better words, Effect of a Source.
Well, that sounds very dangerous to the ego to be an effect only. Tsk tsk tsk. That’s very insulting because of course part of your ego definition of yourself is that you have authority, that you can act and have a result to your acts that gives you notoriety, either good or bad, that creates for you in the world an identity that is respected or disrespected. But to be the effect only of something else, why that means you’re a robot, that means you’re a puppet.
But you know what? You are the Effect, the Manifestation of the Movement of Love. You are the Embodiment of Intelligence. You are the Manifestation, the Visibility and Tangibility of Life. You are the Presence of God. And that is not nothing. And that would only appear to be a state of puppethood to one who imagines that there is a way to be separate from one’s Source. And so it conceives that if you’re going to abandon being a puppet with no strings, in other words seeming to be able to be a self-authorized and active puppet, that instead of that you’re going to become the inanimate, lifeless, collection of wood parts at the end of strings that something alive is going to manipulate. It still sees the possibility of the truth in terms of separateness. Either a puppet with no strings or a puppet with strings.
But when you acknowledge that you have a Source and you’re not It, and you’re willing to become defenseless against the Experience of that Source, you find out that that Source is the Father and that tells you immediately Who You Are, the Son or the Daughter, and now you have the Experience of Identity, True Identity. And then you find that the mind that you have been using to have imaginations and the mind that you’ve been using to give your full attention and commitment to those definitions, rather than the mind that you are that’s having the definitions…
You find that this Mind that was having the definitions was what was Real about you and that this Mind that you thought was your private mind is the capital “M” Mind that is God without any privateness to It embracing All of the Infinity of What God Is Being. And so your Experience of Mind is enhanced totally. And you find that You and God are One. And that One is God. It’s that simple.
And there is no divine puppet at the end of strings that God is manipulating. Your Mind and the Mind of God are One. Your Soul is the Soul that is God. Soul is Mind’s Capacity to Feel the Meaning of All of Creation.
You don’t have a Soul. From a separated standpoint that is the way you would interpret it, that you do have a soul, but the Truth is that You Are Soul. You Are, you might say, God’s Capacity to Feel the Meaning of Creation, the Movement of Creation Infinitely. That’s not an experience of puppethood. That’s an Experience of Oneness with God.
The term “salvation” does NOT apply to the Soul, which is not in danger, and does not need to be salvaged. Salvation is nothing more than “right-mindedness,” which is not the One-Mindedness of the Soul, but which must be accomplished before One-Mindedness can be restored.
Very simply you in your separate sense of yourself must arrive at a point where you will give deference to God, reaching outside of your tiny sense of yourself that you revere so fully and inviting the Experience of God in. This is the way right-mindedness is achieved. And right-mindedness has this advantage: It brings you into alignment with the Father’s Will. It weakens the self-definitions that you have previously made commitment to. And it provides the opportunity for breakthrough, for revelation to occur in you, the revealing of your inseparability from God and the full Conscious Experience of Intelligence, Life, Love, Mind, Soul, Spirit, Truth.
Right-mindedness dictates the next step automatically …
In other words, without your having to have a goal, without your having to be proactive about it, without your having to take some personal private action that can give the little ego you are a little bit of glory.
Again, and I’m going to insert the word “itself.”
Right-mindedness itself dictates the next step automatically because right perception is uniformly without attack…
Which means without defense.
… so that wrong-mindedness is obliterated. The ego cannot survive without judgment, and is laid aside accordingly.
In other words, the ego cannot survive without judgment, therefore without judgment, it is laid aside accordingly. It just disappears.
The mind then has only ONE direction in which it can move. The direction which the mind will take is always automatic, because it cannot BUT be dictated by the thought system to which the mind adheres.
If your thought system is the one you have created giving definition to everything, then your mind will follow the dictates of those definitions. But if you have decided to yield to the Father, to be open to the Father and to let the Father in, then you will have moved into what you could call a new thought system, except it’s a thought system that you’re not originating. And your mind will follow automatically the characteristics and the nature of this new thought system. Which means that you will find yourself, like a snowball rolling down a mountainside of snow, or an avalanche thundering down the mountainside, that you will be moving inexorably to the most grounded place available to you, which is your Sanity, which is your Conscious Experience of Union with God.
Every thought system has internal consistency, and this provides the basis for the continuity of behavior. However, this is a matter of reliability, and not validity.
Reliable behavior. Oh, he’s a good boy, or she’s a good girl and you can depend upon her.
“Reliable behavior” is a meaningful perception, as far as ego thinking goes. However, “valid behavior” [in other words, real, true behavior] is an expression which is inherently contradictory, because validity is an END and behavior is a MEANS. These cannot be combined logically because, when an end has been attained, the means for its attainment are no longer meaningful.
And this is what is characteristic of imaginative thinking. It doesn’t have to follow rules. It doesn’t have to be intelligent. And unintelligent thoughts connected together can be embraced by you as being intelligent. Or a grouping of intelligent thoughts and unintelligent thoughts can be embraced by you. And you can say, “This is reasonable.” It’s like saying, “If I have unconditional Love, I can have multiple simultaneous relationships with others and it will work. No need for commitment. Or, I can have multiple simultaneous relationships with others with commitment and be a little more respectable.” But the fact is that if you try to do it, it won’t work. But you can in the freedom of your imagination create that concept and attempt to live it out and think that you’re being intelligent, when at the bottom line you have combined intelligence and unintelligence which don’t mix.
A hypothesis is either false or true, to be accepted or rejected accordingly. If it is shown to be true it becomes a fact, after which no-one attempts to evaluate it unless its status AS fact is questioned.
Now this next sentence is key.
EVERY idea to which the ego has accorded the status of fact is questionable, because facts are in the realm of knowledge.
That’s why I’ve told you when you go through your day, do not assume that you know what a thing is, even if it’s a beautiful thing. Because if you’re not awake, you’re not experiencing the totality of what you’re looking at. And so you need to call into question any definition that you’ve given to anything, or that you’ve been provided with by teachers. You need to be willing to call it into question, at least to the extent to say, “What is the more of What God Is Being right there than what I’m seeing?”
And here’s the reason stated very clearly.
EVERY idea to which the ego has accorded the status of fact is questionable, because facts are in the realm of knowledge.
Another way of saying that is that facts are non-existent in the ego frame of reference.
Confusing realms of discourse …
Confusing realms of discourse, which is another way of describing talking about that which you know nothing about because you haven’t checked in to see what is Real.
… is a thinking error which philosophers have recognized for centuries. Psychologists …
And every single one of you as well.
… are generally quite deficient in this respect, as are many theologians.
In other words, absolutely everyone who has turned their back on their Source and denied It and therefore does not know who he or she is, is deficient in this respect.
Data from one realm of discourse do not mean anything in another because they can be understood only WITHIN the thought system of which they are a part. That is why psychologists are concentrating increasingly on the ego, in an attempt to unify their clearly unrelated data.
You see it’s very important to get mutual agreement, because without mutual agreement, flaws or beliefs or ignorances will never be embraced as anything other than what they are. So it’s very important to become very focused in studying the illusion so that everybody will agree as to what the nature of the illusion is, even though everybody’s calling that illusion something real.
So be careful of… shall I call it “group thinking.” “Oh! I just love to be with like-minded people. Give me a group of metaphysical people to be with. Let me find people who value what I value.” Well, be careful. Because what you’re going to end up with is a bunch of mutual agreements that make you feel cozy and warm in the heart because everybody loves each other because everyone thinks the same way. Everyone values the things you value.
But where is God in that? If you haven’t turned toward the Altar, if you haven’t connected with your Source, you’re just having a hunky-dory metaphysical illusion of togetherness. And you’re still dreaming a dream. It would be better for you to be with other people who, like you, are valuing connecting with your Source, and who value you and everyone else giving expression to what you find yourself Knowing as a result with your connection with your Source. Because when you’re connected with your Source, you have gone to the Place of Excellence in You. And you will be speaking to that Place of Excellence in Them. And they will be speaking from that Place of Excellence in Themselves when they speak to you. And mutual agreement will have nothing to do with the interaction. You see?
And you will feel not cozy and safe in this wonderful social setting of like-minded people. You will instead feel coming through you and coming from everyone else the current, fresh inspiration of God. And now you’re talking about a meaningful experience! And you’re talking about an experience which will not degenerate into nothing more than a bunch of mealy-mouthed individuals rehearsing the rhetoric of their mutually-agreed-upon definitions. Do you see what I’m saying?
That is why psychologists are concentrating increasingly on the ego…
They gotta find some one thing to focus on and that will narrow down the topic, that will narrow down the need for definitions so it will be easier to come to a single mutually-agreed-upon definition.
Again, repeating …
That is why psychologists are concentrating increasingly on the ego, in an attempt to unify their clearly unrelated data. It need hardly be said that an attempt to relate the unrelated CANNOT succeed.
The more recent ecological emphases are but another ingenious way of trying to impose order on chaos.
What chaos? The chaos of not Knowing Who You Are. The chaos of not Knowing What You Are. The chaos of not Knowing Why You’re Here. The chaos of not knowing where to go to get the answer. Or, if you do know, refusing to do it.
We have already credited the ego with considerable ingenuity, though not with creativeness.
The Source of Creation is God and the Realm of Creation is God, or You in your Right Mind.
It should, however, be remembered that inventiveness is really wasted effort, even in its most ingenious forms.
Why? Because when you are denying your Source, all of your inventiveness, all of your ingenuity will be directed to establishing your definition of yourself and your definition of everything else in the minds of others so that they will confirm to you your fantasy as though it’s true, and thereby secure your existence. In other words, give you a sense of identity that you cannot have when you don’t know what your Source is. So all ingenuity and all inventiveness will without fail be directed toward your security, your safety, your invulnerability, your groundedness in an absolutely ungrounded state of fantasy.
…those who are Awake …
… do not have to explain ANYTHING.
We don’t have to justify anything. We don’t have to convince anyone of anything. We don’t have to protect anything. What We Are Is God in the Act of Creation. And nothing else.
This is why we need not trouble ourselves with inventiveness. The highly specific nature of invention …
And I’m going to add: or ingenuity …
… is not worthy of the abstract creativity of God’s creations.
Which We Are. Not just those of Us who are awake, but you as well.
Many of you can imagine that it would a wonderful thing to be able to go to the tropics and go out on the beach and maybe get a boogie board or a surfboard, and in the leisure of your day, go out to the waves and ride them in on your boogie board or your surfboard, to enjoy finding the crest of the wave, catching it, and flowing with it.
Well, in the leisure of your True Being, You ride the Wave of Creation Infinitely in all directions simultaneously without missing any tiny aspect of every leading edge of every Movement of Creation all at the same time. Such Conscious Experience, such Infinite Conscious Experience, such Fullness of Experience is what is yours when you’re not denying your Source and thereby not denying Who You Are. You don’t get absorbed into anything. All, infinitely speaking, becomes available to you as that which identifies You Truly to You. And therefore your flowing with, your riding the Wave of Creation constitutes the incredible Experience of Your Identity.
And no such question as, “Who am I?”, will popup. No ridiculous question such as, “What am I?”, will even touch the fringes of your Infinite Mind. And to wonder, “Why am I here?”, would cause you to laugh with great peals of joy. Because you know that why you’re here is to glorify Creation in Its Infinite Waves of Movement. Because You are Mind and its your Function to be Conscious. And You are Soul and so it is your Function to Feel the capital “M” Meaning of All That Is.
And, if you don’t be careful, you might be likely to listen to my words at this very moment and imagine that I’m talking about some other-worldly spiritual experience. And I want to bring you right back to the here and now [knocking on the table] to the glass-topped table, to the beautiful roses, to your fingernails, to your hair, to the other individuals who are in the room. And I want you to be willing to dare to assume that every single thing you’re seeing is a Wave of the Movement of Creation with the Fullness of the Meaning God Is Being right there. And so what I’m talking about isn’t other-worldly and you need to be watching for the clearer image, if you will, the clearer experience of the rose and the glass-topped table and your fingernails and your hair and the other people in the room.
Because remember the Mind that you are experiencing right now is the Divine Mind. It’s the only Mind you will ever have, but you are using your Mind for the specific purpose of giving your attention only to the definitions and meanings you are applying to the Infinite Movement of Creation that is in your face. And so you say, “It’s just a red rose. It’s just a white rose. It’s just a piece [knocking on the glass] of glass. It’s just a not too attractive fingernail. It’s thinning hair.” You see? And you block the Experience of What It Really Is.
The Ultimate is in your face today. And the Mind you are using is the Mind That Is God. The Mind That Is God what? Being your Consciousness, being your Mind. And so the answer lies not in finding another place to be where you could just as easily say, “Why am I here?” It lies in using your Mind differently right here and right now. Because the moment you move into a different thought system, you will see the Kingdom of Heaven in completely different form than the form you’re seeing the Kingdom of Heaven in at this moment when you are preoccupied with your definitions. Reality, the only thing that’s confronting you, will look different to you when you shift to a different thought system from which to view the Kingdom of Heaven.
At least intellectually, do you grasp what I’m saying? Your belief system is a filter. And the filter sieves out, filters out certain aspects of Reality. And you take what’s left and you say, “This is what is going on. This is what these little parts of infinity are and they are the totality.” Change your filter, like changing your glasses from regular to polarized will give you a different view.
What is a miracle? A shift, a sudden shift of perception. A movement from one thought system to another system.
Now don’t get smart-assed with me, and I’m saying this not to anyone in this room, but to all of those people who just love to think. Don’t get smart-assed with me and say, “Well, a heck of a lot of good it does to move from one thought system to another thought system ‘cause you’re still in a thought system. You haven’t woken up yet.” Well, don’t discount what I’m saying with such stupidity, please.
When you change from a thought system that is ignorant, that is a denial of your Source, that causes you not to know Who You Are because you can’t have an identity if you’re sourceless, when you make a shift from that to a better thought system that is more in alignment with the Truth, you are moving toward what the Course calls the happy dream.
The poor thought models that you’re using right now do not allow for breaking out of the thought system. But you can move to a thought system that recognizes that indeed it is still not a matter of being awake, but if that thought system embraces within itself an infrastructure, I will say, that promotes invalidating the way you’re currently seeing things and invites you to look with innocent eyes at everything you’re seeing, because you’ve been told that what’s there is truly the Kingdom of Heaven even though you’re not seeing it, and you decide you want to see the more of the Kingdom of Heaven that’s there, you’re in a thought system which inherently undermines itself and promotes the experience of insight because you become undefended against insight. You become undefended against what you don’t know yet. And hopefully, you actually begin to desire to have an experience of the unknown because this better thought system you’re in tells you that the unknown is not fearful, is not fearsome, is not threatening.
And I will tell you something. You will move from thought system to thought system to thought system with improvements. Actually what will happen is that your current thought system is being undermined by everything I’m sharing with you. It’s being undermined by your Soul directly with you as It insists upon reuniting yourself with your Self, with a capital “S”. And so, you will find that a constant modification of your thought system will occur until the infrastructure of it becomes so freeing, rather than binding, that you will finally arrive at a point where you have the guts to abandon thought systems entirely and let go into the Father, let go into your Soul, let go into the Love That You Are. And let It consume you. Let It Be All There Is Of You. And that’s when you’ll wake up.
You will say “Uncle” to God. And God will fill you full because you will be presenting no resistance whatsoever and that is why it is said that, “God will take the last step.” You see, it isn’t the Kingdom of Heaven that you need to let yourself back into at the bottom line. What you need to do at the bottom line is to be so completely undefended that you let God in to replace who you thought you were. To replace who you thought you were. Not improve it. Replace it.
And here’s another way of putting it that you’ll be able to embrace more easily. What you will be doing is becoming defenseless enough, or so completely void of defense, that your Self, your capital “S” Self will replace who you think you are. Maybe it’s scary to think that God might replace who you are. So realize that it is Who You Truly Are that will replace who you think you are. They both mean the same thing.
But it’s helpful, ultimately it’s required for you to recognize that God will replace who you are, because until you say “Yes” to God, you will still be in some state of denial of your Source.
God and You are One. And That One Is God.
Write that on your refrigerator.
God and You are One. And That One Is God.
And when you let that be the utter simple Truth, you will get your Identity back. You will get your Identity back and you will Know What You Are. And instead of wondering why you are where you are, you will Know Where You Are, in the Kingdom of Heaven in the Conscious Experience of Creation as It Moves.
Is this interesting, or what!?
I Love You All.
T4.2 The Ego and False Autonomy ↩︎