Aug 24, 2003
T4.5 The Ego-Body Illusion

Good afternoon. It’s good to have you here. And I welcome everyone as well who is joining us on the internet.

I’m going to continue reading from the transcript as completed by Bill Thetford. And the next two paragraphs were not only specifically directed to Helen and Bill, but you might say all psychologists, and there is transfer value here for every single person who reads it.

Beginning.

Psychologists are in a good position to realize that the ego is capable of making and accepting as real some very distorted associations. The confusion of sex with aggression, and the resulting behavior which is perceived as the same for both, serves as an example. This is “understandable” to the psychologist, and does not produce surprise. The lack of surprise, however, is NOT a sign of understanding. It is a symptom of the psychologist’s ability to accept as reasonable a compromise which is clearly senseless; to attribute it to the mental illness of the patient, rather than his own; and to limit his questions about both the patient AND himself to the trivial.1

Such relatively minor confusions of the ego are not among its more profound misassociations, although they do reflect them. Your egos have been blocking the more important questions which your minds SHOULD ask. You do not understand a patient …

Or you could say you do not understand a brother or a sister or a partner or a friend or a boss.

You do not understand a patient while you yourselves are willing to limit the questions you raise about HIS mind, because you are also accepting these limits for YOURS.

In other words, anyone who thinks just like you do, you don’t question. You don’t practice doubt. You don’t ask, “Is there another way to look at this?” Because the way they think confirms the way you think and there you are, your mutually-agreed-upon definitions are confirmed, even though the mutually-agreed-upon definitions constitute a mental aberration, or what you might call a mental illness, because of the fact that the mutually-agreed-upon definitions are in contradiction to the Meanings Expressed By God in all of the things you have applied new definitions to.

So, repeating …

… you are also accepting these limits for YOURS. This makes you unable to heal him AND yourselves. Be always unwilling to adapt to ANY situation in which miracle-mindedness is unthinkable. That state in itself is enough to demonstrate that the perception is wrong.

The next section is entitled:

The Constant State

And in the first and second edition it’s entitled:

The Rewards of God

The Constant State

It cannot be emphasized too often that correcting perception is merely a temporary expedient.

In other words, it’s not an end goal. Correcting perception doesn’t resolve your dream. Correcting perception doesn’t wake you up.

Continuing …

It is necessary to do so …

… meaning correct perception …

… only because misperception is a block to knowledge…

… or Knowing …

… while accurate perception is a stepping-stone TOWARDS it. Again.

It cannot be emphasized too often that correcting perception is merely a temporary expedient. It is necessary to do so only because misperception is a block to knowledge, while accurate perception is a stepping-stone TOWARDS it. The whole value of right perception lies in the inevitable judgment which it entails that it IS unnecessary.

In other words, the value of right perception lies in the discovery you make upon experiencing correct perception, accurate perception, that having accurate perception is unnecessary. And the reason you have that realization is because in the presence of accurate perception, you see the valuelessness of the misperception you were harboring, and in that space, if I may put it that way, in the space of accurate perception you are subject to sudden insight, sudden inspiration, sudden revelation that constitutes a connection with God. An Experience of Truth that shows you that although right perception was valuable as a stepping stone, it wasn’t the end goal and it wasn’t the point. It was the experience of Knowing with a capital “K”, the Impulse of Truth from God registering with you that was the point and that you see was the point.

Okay …

This …

… experience.

This removes the block entirely. You may ask how this is possible as long as you appear to be living in this world, and since this is a sensible question, it has a sensible answer. You must be careful, however, that you really understand the question. What IS the “you” who are living in this world?

Well, let’s explore what this you is.

Continuing …

Immortality is a constant state. It is as true now as it ever was or ever will be, because it implies NO CHANGE AT ALL. It is not a continuum, nor is it understood by being compared to an opposite. Knowledge …

… or Knowing …

… never involves comparisons. That is its essential difference from everything else the mind can grasp. “A little knowledge” is not dangerous except to the ego.

In other words, a little bit of the Experience of Knowing the Truth is not dangerous except to the ego.

Vaguely it senses threat, and being unable to realize that “a little knowledge” is a meaningless phrase since “all” and “a little” in this context are the same, the ego decides that since “all” is impossible, the fear does not lie there. “A little,” however, is a scarcity concept, and THIS the ego understands well. “A little,” then, is perceived as the real threat.

The essential thing to remember is that the ego DOES NOT RECOGNIZE the real source of its perceived threat, and if YOU associate yourself with the ego, YOU do not perceive the whole situation as it is. Only your allegiance to it gives the ego ANY power over you.

Now what’s coming up next is extremely important.

We have spoken of the ego as if it were a separate thing acting on its own.

And I spoke about this last week.

This was necessary to persuade you that you cannot dismiss it lightly, and must realize how much of your thinking is ego-directed. We cannot safely let it go at that, however, or you will regard yourselves as necessarily conflicted as long as you are here, or, more properly, as long as you BELIEVE that you are here.

And this should be underlined and printed in red and put on your refrigerator.

The ego is nothing more than a PART of your belief about yourselves.

You remember last week I spoke about the fact that never at any point had you ceased to be the direct Expression of God. That each one of you is the Christ pretending not to be the Christ, behaving as though you’re not the Christ and believing your behavior. And so you call yourselves egos and with the full power of the Christ That You Are, you construct experiences that are unpleasant because they don’t reflect your Divine Intelligence. But never at any time is there a thing called an ego doing anything at all. It’s always the Christ with an ego-mask on pretending to be what the mask represents. You see?

And so, repeating …

The ego is nothing more than a PART of your belief about yourselves.

The ego is nothing more than a part of the Christ’s belief about himself. You see? It’s always the Christ. It’s always the Christ. You’re always the Christ. You can’t stop Being What You Are. You can pretend. You can fool yourselves. But you can’t make it true. And so at every single moment, You are the Ultimate. At this very moment You are the Ultimate, the very Presence of God. And isn’t it amazing? None of you can believe it. “Nice idea. Wonderful thought. But it just can’t be so. I know who I am. I know I’m not what you’re talking about.”

Well, I will keep telling you that you are what I’m talking about until your confidence and your doubt begins to break down. I will keep talking until your confidence begins to break down and you begin to consider the possibility that maybe, in spite of your absolute confidence in your belief about yourself, you might be wrong and I might be right. So that you might let your Experience of Who You Are be regenerated, illuminated, and let Its Absolute Infinite Divinity begin to register with you. And so that you might look at your bodies and say, “The limitations I’m experiencing here, the age I seem to be experiencing here, the youth that my children seem to be experiencing there, can’t be the Truth because I am Eternal, Changeless, Forever Embodying The Pristine Idea God Is Having right where I see myself and right where I see my children.

Again …

The ego is nothing more than a PART of your belief about yourselves. Your other life …

The Life of the Divine One That You Are. The Life that God is unfolding flawlessly and which it is a Joy for you to be experiencing.

… has continued without interruption, and has been and always will be totally unaffected by your attempts to disassociate.

In other words, by your attempts to say, “Father, I’d rather do it my way. Father, I’d rather see it my way. Father, I’d rather decide what things are.”

The ratio of repression …

Meaning the ignoring of your Divinity.

… and dissociation …

Meaning your distancing yourself from God and your acknowledgement that God is your Source and that you are not your source.

… varies with the individual ego-illusion, but dissociation is always involved, or you would not believe that you ARE here.

Meaning in an experience that can’t be called the Kingdom of Heaven, that can’t be called Reality with a capital “R”.

In learning to escape from the illusions you have made…

Remember they are not illusions that you, a piss-ant little ego, has made. They are illusions which you, a fully Christed Presence of God, have made-up and given preference to.

In learning to escape from the illusions you have made, your great debt to each other is something you must never forget. It is exactly the same debt that you owe to me. Whenever you react egotistically towards each other, you are throwing away the graciousness of your indebtedness, and the holy perception it would produce.

What is the indebtedness you have to each other? At the bottom line it is the fact that each one of you is the Christ whether you are embodying it consciously or not. And because you haven’t stopped being What You Divinely Are, you present to all of your Brothers and Sisters the ongoing, ever-present opportunity to recognize the Christ right where you are. You are all indebted to each other because you all provide each other with the constant opportunity to remember Home, to remember God, and thereby to remember Who You Are.

Continuing …

The term “holy” can be used here because, as you learn how much you ARE indebted to the whole Sonship, which INCLUDES me, you come as close to knowledge as perception ever can. The gap …

Between perception and Knowledge or Knowing.

… is then so small that knowledge can easily flow across it, and obliterate it forever.

Again that’s why you’re indebted to each other because you’re constantly providing each other with the opportunity for that to happen.

Continuing …

You have very little trust in me as yet, but it will increase as you turn more and more often to me INSTEAD of your egos for guidance.

And of course, what that means is instead of you, the Christ, turning to the definition you have given yourself and all of the self-protecting, mutual agreements that have been developed by you in order not to be able to remember Home.

Again …

You have very little trust in me as yet, but it will increase as you turn more and more often to me INSTEAD of your egos for guidance.

Another way of saying that would be instead of your imaginations for guidance.

Continuing …

The results will convince you increasingly that your choice in turning to me is the only sane one you can make.

Well, if you haven’t had the experience of turning to me and experiencing the result, then I will share with you that when you turn to me, when you genuinely, unresistantly ask anything of me, I will respond. I do respond. And I respond in a manner you can hear.

And in that experience, you find yourself experiencing yourself as I experience You. As a result, you feel your Innocence. You don’t feel at all surprised that you’re hearing from me. It doesn’t feel at all unnatural. Although afterwards you will stand in wonder, and even ask yourself if you went crazy. But the Experience of Communion with me is one that feels utterly natural and normal with one exception; that you feel utterly Loved and you’re not surprised. In other words, the experience doesn’t feel unnatural to you. And at the time that it’s occurring, you won’t find yourself objecting to it. You won’t find yourself arguing with it. You will not find yourself saying, “I am not worthy of this.”

Repeating …

The results …

Which I just described.

… will convince you increasingly that your choice in turning to me is the only sane one you can make. No-one who has learned from experience that one choice brings peace and joy, while another brings chaos and disaster, needs much conditioning.

The simple fact is that you will need more, but you won’t need a whole lot.

Continuing …

The ego …

Meaning your current best definition of yourself that you have convinced yourself of and that you have convinced many others of.

… cannot withstand the conditioning process …

Of repeated communion with me.

… because the process itself DEMONSTRATES that there is another way. Conditioning by rewards has always been more effective than conditioning by pain because pain is an ego-illusion, and can never induce more than a temporary effect. The rewards of God, however, are immediately recognized as eternal.

And I will tell you something. No matter how slight or how momentary or how brief an encounter you have with me, it will leave you forever changed. Not shockingly, but it will leave you changed because you will have had a demonstration that in spite of your attempt to be separate and alone, you aren’t. And the experience is a demonstration of the fact that you aren’t alone, that you never have been alone, and never will be. In other words, that Being, I’m going to put it this way, is a community experience, is an Experience of Brotherhood.

Continuing …

Since this recognition is made by you …

In other words, the Christ that you Are.

… and NOT the ego, the recognition ITSELF establishes that you and your ego CANNOT be identical.

That’s one of the realizations that will change you forever because you can’t undo that recognition.

Continuing …

You may believe that you have already accepted the difference, but you are by no means convinced as yet. The very fact that you are preoccupied with the idea of escaping FROM the ego shows this.

Keeping in mind that your ego isn’t something separate from you, but that you are not the ego, that You are the Christ employing a mask or a definition of yourself that can’t possibly change what’s underneath the mask.

Remember this …

You CANNOT escape from the ego by humbling it or controlling it or punishing it. Remember that the ego and the Soul DO NOT KNOW each other. The separated mind cannot maintain the separation EXCEPT by dissociating.

Now, this may sound confusing. If you, the Christ, are pretending to be an ego, then it would seem that You, Soul, can know the ego, but the fact is that they are mutually exclusive. The ego cannot let itself know the Soul, cannot let itself know … I’m going to change that. The ego cannot let you know or access the fact that You Are Soul because that will constitute the demise of the ego. And so that’s why it tells you, you are not Soul, with a capital “S”, the Living Presence of God, but that you are a soul, a little creation of God, a little separate and apart thing that God made that has the attributes of God, but isn’t God Presencing Himself Right Where You Are.

Continuing …

The separated mind cannot maintain the separation EXCEPT by dissociating.

By keeping Soul separate from it so that it cannot experience its demise.

Having done this, it utilizes repression against all truly natural impulses…

And I’m going to say Divine Impulses.

… not because the EGO is a separate thing, but because you want to believe that YOU are.

You might say that’s hard to believe. You never decided that you wanted to be separate. But the fact is that you have gotten hooked, as we’ve talked about many times, on the experience, the high, the hit that you get from attempting to be individually privately creative and to make your mark on the world, or to actually create something on your own that you can take credit for entirely. You thrive on the attempt to accomplish this. And you do it because the ego suggests to you that you can. And the ego suggests to you that you can so that you will be distracted from connecting with yourself as Soul.

Repeating …

Having done this, it …

… the separated mind …

… utilizes repression against all truly natural impulses, not because the EGO is a separate thing, but because you want to believe that YOU are. The ego is a device for maintaining this belief, but it is still only YOUR willingness to use the device that enables it to endure.

Do you see what I’ve been meaning when I’ve said that you are at this moment the Christ pretending you aren’t, behaving as though you aren’t, and believing your behavior. There is no ego.

Repeating …

The ego is a device …

… a tool, a means …

… for maintaining this belief…

… that you can be separate …

… but it is still only YOUR willingness …

… the willingness of the Christ that you Are …

… to use the device that enables it to endure.

And then, silly ones, you blame the ego. “The ego made me do it.” And all the time, you have put on the mask, behaved as though you aren’t yourself, and then tried to lay responsibility for the crazy actions that you’ve taken, on this masked figure. “Who was that masked man?” “I don’t know. We better try and find out.” You see? More subterfuge.

I mentioned last week that what I’m engaged in with all of you is an overture of Love, and here’s a little more of it.

My trust in you is greater than yours in me at the moment, but it will not always be that way. Your mission is very simple. You have been chosen to live so as to demonstrate that you are NOT an ego. I repeat that I do not choose God’s channels wrongly.

Now it could be very easy to say here that I was speaking exclusively to Helen and Bill and that this doesn’t relate to you. But I’ll tell you something. Anyone who is hearing my voice, whether it’s right now through Paul or whether it’s in the stillness within yourself, you are at a point of becoming undefended against your connection with the Whole of Being, your connection with those of the Brotherhood who are not confined by ego definitions.

You have arrived at a point where you’re breaking the boundary and the isolation. In that sense, your intent that you have followed through on to the point of successful contact, if I may put it that way, has made it possible for Me or for your Guides or for the Holy Spirit to provide the invitation to you to persist further in this direction.

In that sense, I have chosen each one of you who has chosen to listen. And so, you’re having been chosen doesn’t make you special. It simply confirms where a newfound commitment lies in you. And it inevitably, that decision, that choice inevitably puts you in the position of realizing that part of waking up involves Loving your Brother as yourself, behaving in a new way with your Brother, seeing your Brother in a new way, being willing to use your Brother for the purpose of remembering the Christ in him, and therefore the Christ in you.

So continuing …

I repeat that I do not choose God’s channels wrongly.

It was really a mutual choice. You and I did it together.

Continuing …

The Holy One shares my trust, and always approves my Atonement decisions because my will is never out of accord with His. I have told you before that I am in charge of the whole Atonement. This is ONLY because I completed my part in it as a man, and can now complete it through other men. My chosen receiving and sending channels …

Meaning any of you who hears My Voice and communes with Me.

… cannot fail because I will lend them MY strength as long as theirs is wanting.

The word “channels” has a somewhat bad rap these days. But what are you doing when you become defenseless against God? You let God shine through you. We’ve talked about your needing to have an object of your affection, some place to extend your Love to so that you might extend the Father’s Love through you to the object of your affection, and thereby both of you stand in receipt of the Father’s Love. Doesn’t that make you a channel in that sense? If you are here to represent God, if you are here because you are the Expression of God, then you are channeling God.

Continuing …

I will go with you to the Holy One…

I will go with you to the Holy One, and through MY perception HE can bridge the little gap. Your gratitude to EACH OTHER is the only gift I want. I will bring it to God for you, knowing that to know your brother IS to know God. A little knowledge is an all-encompassing thing. If you are grateful to each other, you are grateful to God for what He created.

Now, don’t be grateful to each other because you scratched his back and he scratched your back, and you made a good deal together. You made-up a good agreement. That’s not what we’re talking about. Gratitude, gratitude for the Christ that your Brother must be regardless of how he’s behaving, is the gratitude that will transform you and him.

Continuing here …

If you are grateful to each other, you are grateful to God for what He created. Through your gratitude you can come to know each other…

And that truly, in the sense of Knowing as opposed to perceiving.

Through your gratitude you can come to know each other, and one moment of real recognition makes all men your brothers, because they are all of your Father.

There’s an incredible learning when you find yourself feeling Loved by Me or Loved by God. And that is that you realize that you didn’t do anything to become worthy of it. You know that you didn’t change in any way to suddenly stand in the conscious receipt of being Loved by God. And in that moment you inescapably become aware of the fact that the same thing is true of your Brother or your Sister, that they are as deserving of it as you are because you know you’re not any more special than them. And in that realization a truer sense of Brotherhood comes into play and a capacity on your part to truly be able to look beyond your definitions of them, or the definitions of themselves that they present to you, and see more deeply into their worthiness.

Continuing …

Love does not conquer all things, but it DOES set all things right.

You might say it puts all things into perspective so that everything fits perfectly and divinely.

Continuing …

Because you are all the Kingdom of God, I can lead you back to your own creations, which you do not yet know. What has been dissociated is still there.

In other words, the Movement of Creation that has been going on all this time that you have been dallying with the ego and playing with the idea of being an ego and suffering from the idea of being an ego, all of the Movement of Creation that you’ve been participating in remains unchanged and awaiting your recognition and remembrance of It. And it will be returned as I said.

Continuing in my invitation to Love.

As you come closer to a brother you DO approach me, and as you withdraw from him, I become distant to you.

Notice I didn’t say from you. I don’t withdraw, but as you withdraw from him, I become distant to you. Because in effect, you withdraw from me.

Your giant step forward was to insist on a “collaborative venture.”

This remark was specifically made to Helen and Bill, but I want to point out to you that the moment you, any one of you decides to abandon your isolation and you reach out to me and you make connection with me, it is because you have insisted on a collaborative venture. You have said, “I want to join. I do not want to be autonomous.”

Continuing …

This does not go against the true spirit of meditation; it is inherent in it.

In other words, meditation is not an isolated experience. It is not meant to hold you in your already-existing isolation, but in a finer experience of peace in your isolation.

Meditation is a collaborative venture with God.

See how I’m promoting our Love affair here.

It CANNOT be undertaken successfully by those who disengage themselves from the Sonship…

Or the Brotherhood.

… because they are disengaging themselves from me. God will come to you …

And I’ve said this over and over and it’s the key point and it’s the simplicity of it.

God will come to you ONLY as you will give Him to your brothers.

Only as you are willing to have an object of your affection and let that object of your affection not be the bastard who is confronting you, but the Christ that you know has to underlie that definition he is applying to himself.

God will come to you ONLY as you will give Him to your brothers. Learn first of them…

In other words, let your Brothers pleasant or nasty, kind or mean, aggressive or passive, be the ones, be the one whom you choose to extend the acknowledgement of Christhood to. Let them be the trigger for your refusing to respond from your ego, and rather respond from that Place of having turned toward the Altar, having joined with Me or with the Father so that you might extend a purer, more acceptable Love that arises out of a sense of Who The One You’re Extending To Is Divinely.

Learn first of them, and you will be ready to hear God as you hear them.

In other words, don’t go running off to God and leave your Brother out in the boonies and say, “I’ll come back with you when I’ve got a clearer perception. It’s a little bit too hard for me to deal with you right now. It will be easier for me to deal with God and I’m going to do that by myself. So I’ll be back when I make the connection.” You see?

You start with your Brother. Let your Brother be the reason you turn toward God. But not as a means of leaving your Brother, but rather as a means of coming into Clarity, Divine Clarity within yourself so that your Brother will be worth your attention and your commitment and so that you will reflect back to your Brother or your Sister the Divine Truth you know about the Christ That They Are in whatever manner it takes to cause them to feel safe enough to abandon the definition that they’ve given themselves and the effort they are confident they have to put forth to protect themselves in your presence.

Repeating …

Learn first of them, and you will be ready to hear God as you hear them. That is because the function of love is one.

Now, I’m asking you this question. You could ask me this question.

How can you teach someone the value of something he has deliberately thrown away?

And if your ego is really rearing its head, it would say, “Why would you bother to teach someone the value of something he has deliberately thrown away?”

Well, how do you teach someone the value of something he has deliberately thrown away?

He must have thrown it away because he did not value it. You can only show him how miserable he is without it…

Without the thing he threw away.

… and bring it near very slowly…

You don’t cram it down his throat. You don’t shove it in his face.

You can only show him how miserable he is without it…

Meaning the correct perception that he’s thrown away.

… and bring it near very slowly, so he can learn how his misery lessens as he approaches it.

If you don’t approach slowly, you will frighten him and his fear will not lessen.

Continuing …

This conditions him to associate his misery with its absence, and to associate the opposite of misery with its presence. It gradually becomes desirable, as he changes his mind about its worth.

You see? This is my Love affair with you.

Continuing …

I am conditioning you to associate misery with the ego and joy with the Soul. You have conditioned yourselves the other way around. A far greater reward, however, will break through any conditioning, if it is repeatedly offered whenever the old habit pattern is broken. You are still free to choose, but can you really WANT the rewards of the ego in the presence of the rewards of God?

Well, of course, the answer is “No.”

But just as I am willing to persist with you for as long as it takes, you are invited to persist with each other for as long as it takes. Why? Because somewhere along the line, you will arrive at a point where you have more faith in your Brother than your Brother has in you, just as I have more faith in you than you have in me. Because I have more faith in you because I know Who You Are—the Christ, my Brother, my Sister. Because I have more faith in you, because I know Who You Are, than you have faith in me, I persist in the face of your mistrust of me and your fear of abandoning the control that keeps you bound, even though you think it keeps you safe.

And so I persist with you, and as that begins to be obvious to you and make sense to you, you will begin to feel, not think, but you will begin to feel that this is your function as well with your Brother. And you will be able to feel the fact that no matter how much resistance you run into, and no matter how much delay they introduce into the process of their waking up, they’re worth persisting with because they deserve to Know Who They Already Divinely Are. They deserve not the opportunity to refine themselves and become something that they aren’t already. You see? They deserve to Experience What They Already Are and think they’re not, believe they’re not, and are committed to believing they’re not. And even though you are not feeling Who You Truly Are fully, your commitment to helping them be less afraid of experiencing Who They Are Truly will confirm to you the safety of your persisting, and both of you will be blessed, and that’s the way it works.

So I continue in my Love affair with you. And I invite you all to consider having a Love affair with your fellowman. A Love affair in which you bring to your fellowman an acknowledgement of his Christhood, and bless him with that acknowledgement by neglecting to respond to his ego assertions from your ego habits.

I love companioning with you.

Okay.

  1. T4.5 The Ego-Body Illusion ↩︎

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