Jan 17, 2009
T15.2 Time and Eternity
Good evening. And welcome to everyone who’s joining us on the Internet.
I won’t be quite as hard on you tonight as I was last week. But I am going to help you keep your nose to the grindstone. You may well have gone through the week and wondered, “How can I do this? How can I do what Raj is saying it’s my Birthright to do … my nature to do?”
Well, here’s a way to start: Every night when you go to bed, ask yourself the question, “Who did I bless today as a result of my involvement with them?”
And let’s refine that a little bit, make it a little bit less nebulous: “How many or who that I encountered in my day has felt blessed by his or her encounter with me?”
You see, it’s important for you not to be giving the definitions: “Oh, well, she had to have felt blessed after what I did for her. He must have felt blessed because such wonderful things happened.”
No. It isn’t what you determine blessing to be. It’s what the other determines blessing to be.
So the question is, when you go to bed at night: “How many, or who, feels blessed as a result of my encounter with them today?”
This question, if you will discipline yourself enough to ask it every night, and ask it as though it’s a serious question deserving an honest answer, will help to bring your attention to where it needs to be in order to engage in the act of willingness that causes the holy instant in which Awakening can occur.
You cannot get into the Kingdom of Heaven all by yourself and you can’t get into the Kingdom of Heaven by virtue of how you choose to think.
It’s so simple. You get into the Kingdom of Heaven as a result of an involvement with a brother—an involvement with a sister. Not just any old involvement: A fist fight doesn’t count, even though it’s an involvement, an argument doesn’t count, even though it’s an involvement.
I’m talking about an involvement in which you have given the very best of what you have to give by giving it from the place of willingness to know what God would have you say, and from a place where you are behaving how God would have you behave. Because, for some reason, it’s important to you not to be alone and to be involved with another in a way that truly blesses … blesses by confirming to him or her that love actually exists in the Universe. And that this love is not off at a distance, but intimately present with him, or with her.
Now, how many of you would apply the word, “philanthropist” to yourself or to yourselves? How many of you think of yourselves as philanthropists? Well, probably only a few. And a few who do are the few who feel that they have a lot to give, probably a lot of money that they’re in a position of being able to share on behalf of the best interests and the genuine benefit of others.
Those of you who don’t think you have a lot of money, don’t think of yourselves as philanthropists. And as a result, your brothers aren’t on your mind in the sense of wanting to be constantly attentive to your brothers’ needs or your sisters’ needs to see if there is any way in which you might be able to contribute to the meeting of those needs.
Philanthropists are not casual in their activity. One is not an occasional philanthropist. A philanthropist has a dedication to that activity. As a general rule, their life is given over to the activity. And so his brothers and his sisters, or her brothers and sisters are the object of their attention with an active interest in being able to make significant change for the better in that brother’s or sister’s life.
Now you don’t have to have a lot of money in order to have a commitment to your brothers and sisters, and to be available to them to gift them with that which will be of value and benefit to them. The fact is, that no matter how much or little of earthly value you think you have, you have a divine function: To look into your brother’s eyes and remember God … to look into your brother’s eyes and see God instead of his concept of himself, or your best concept of him. That’s being a philanthropist. It could also be called, being a “Mentor.”
How many of you can identify yourselves as a mentor? Some of you can, some of you are formal mentors … like a big brother. And some of you are not formal mentors but you do engage in what? Involving yourselves with others, in time-consuming, energy-consuming, feeling, involving ways, which by virtue of their expression, cause those who are being mentored to feel better about themselves, to dare to be more fully what they are, or as I said before, to feel that love is a reality in this world and you’ve proven it to them and they are ever so grateful to you for it because they recognize what? The love of the involvement with you and the absence of manipulation and self-seeking on your part.
All of you really have, for the most part, been conditioned to take care of No. 1. That’s why there’s such as phrase as “Taking care of No. 1”—being self-responsible, being respectable on your own, and on and on and on. And if accomplishing that involves taking advantage of your brother, you take advantage of your brother. That’s not mentoring. That’s stealing. That’s unprincipled.
A mentor gifts, and in effect, replenishes what seems to have been absent. Where there was a vacancy, it is now full because of the gift made—the gift of love—and again, the investment of actual time, actual energy and feeling on behalf of a brother.
“Oh-h, I don’t have time to do that for him. I’ve got to take care of myself. I have so many urgent things knocking at my door!”
Well, I’m going to suggest to you that you might not have as many things knocking at your door of an urgent nature if your behavior shifted from getting to giving.
You’re here to be philanthropic. You’re here to be a mentor. You’re here to give of the very best in you so that the very best in your brother and sister can be illuminated and brought forth.
Now, continuing from where we left off last week in the book:
You will doubt until you hear ONE witness whom you have wholly released through the Holy Spirit.
And then you will doubt no more.1
Here’s a bit of frustrating information but practical fact that will help you not be misled:
The holy instant has not yet happened to you. Yet it will, and you will recognize it with perfect certainty.
The moment it happens to anyone, everyone else will know. And those around you will know it first. And the news will spread like wildfire. So do understand that the holy instant has not yet happened to you.
Yet it will, and you will recognize it …
… and everyone else will recognize it …
… with perfect certainty. No gift of God is recognized in any other way.
What does that mean?
No gift of God is recognized in any other way.
It means, that no gift of God is recognized in any way other than an experience you’re having. It will not happen as an intellectual [snaps fingers] realization, an internal “Ah-ha!” It will be an experience. An experience of what? An experience of you reborn—an experience of you that you haven’t experienced in a very long time—one that will be absolutely clear to you, one about which there will be no question whatsoever in your mind.
You can practice the mechanics of the holy instant, and will learn much from doing so.
Well, what’s the holy instant? The holy instant, as we’ve said, is the act, the place in which you yield and say, “Yes” to God. And the “yes” means you’re turning your attention to God, listening, so that you might be the place where the Will of God and the Perspective of God fills you up and passes through you as a blessing to your brothers, sisters, world, and on and on and on. That’s the holy instant.
You can practice the mechanics of the holy instant…
Well what does that mean?
Well, you can be the best damn mentor you can be. You can be the best damn philanthropist you can be. You can do all of the philanthropic things that philanthropists have done. You can do all of the best mentoring that mentors have done. But you know what? That’s not having the experience.
But the practice of the attitude of constant caring, the willingness to not be a casual or intermittent philanthropist but an ongoing presence of caring about your brother so that you’re willing to invest time, energy, feelings and involvement with your brother, those things educate you and get you into a place where the pattern of selfishness can break—can lose its strength of structure—and can begin to fall away from you so that the experience can be had, so that the holy instant … so that what the holy instant is, can happen to you and register with you.
If you want the holy instant to happen, then you’ve got to shift—as we’ve been saying—from getting to giving. You’ve got to shift to being willing to be a mentor. You’ve got to be willing to do whatever it takes, so that each night when you go to bed and you say, “How many, or whom that I encountered during the day feels blessed by my encounter with them?”
If you’re going to ask that question each day, each night, it means that it better be your intent to carry it out—to embody it as you’ve gone through your day. And you have always ample opportunity because the likelihood is you will come in contact with at least one brother or sister with whom you will have an involvement. And one is the magic number. Two is great, three is wonderful. But one is the magic number. One is all it takes for you to be a mentor—for you to be a philanthropist.
You can practice the mechanics of the holy instant…
You can do all the right things. You can think all the right thoughts. You can be loving so that others recognize loving kindness. But you’re here to be Love. You’re here to be Love itself. Love is unpremeditated. Love is what happens when you step out of the way and abandon control so that the Love that God is, which He is embodying as His Expression right where you are, can uninhibitedly extend from you and bless your brother in ways that you couldn’t have calculated, but in ways that will cause your brother to feel blessed—truly blessed—so that you, at the end of the day, can ask, “How many, or who has been blessed by my encounter with them?” and you can say, “One or two or more” instead of “none.”
If you do not have the intent to bless a brother, at least one, during the day, every day … what? . . you’re not fulfilling your purpose. You’re not aligning yourself with the Atonement. You’re not bringing anything to bear upon your experience to cause Awakening, no matter how many loving things you’ve done, no matter how many gifts you’ve made. Many people make gifts. But before they make the gift, they never wonder what would constitute a gift to the receiver. Most say, “I love to do this. I want for my friend to be able to do it too. I will give to them what they need in order to be able to do what I love.”
And yet, that may not be at all fulfilling to your brother. And the gift, although it constitutes doing, “the right thing” or “being loving,” it doesn’t constitute actual connection—actual involvement with your brother—except, perhaps, to cause a feeling in your brother or sister that says, “Wow, he or she really doesn’t understand me. He or she has no idea who I am. There’s no connection between us whatsoever.” And so your gifting didn’t constitute mentoring and it didn’t constitute philanthropy.
You want to give what meets the need. You want to give what actually constitutes blessing and you will not know what that is until you ask God what it is by saying, “Father, fill me with what You would have me be in spite of what I think I want, in spite of what I think he or she needs. I don’t want to interfere with being the perfect expression of You, Father, because I want to Wake up from the limitation and the suffering that I’m experiencing as a result of my faith in and devotion to the idea of independence.”
Now, again …
You can practice the mechanics of the holy instant, and will learn much from doing so. Yet its shining and glittering brilliance, which will literally blind you to this world …
… Uh-oh, blind you to this world that isn’t real—this world and universe that’s an illusion? No. It will blind you to the concepts and beliefs and ideas you have made up about the Kingdom of Heaven that have been flawed by misperceptions—that have been flawed by the fact that you chose to give them definitions different from what the Father was Being as the Kingdom of Heaven.
So, it’s shining …
Yet its shining and glittering brilliance, which will literally blind you to this world …
… I’m going to add, that you made up …
… by its own vision, you cannot supply.
I will read it again …
Yet its shining and glittering brilliance…
… what does that mean? That means the divine livingness, the divine vitality of the holy instant …
… which will literally blind you to this world by its own vision, you cannot supply.
The holy instant supplies it. It supplies it when you stop trying to supply it by means of your own vision, your own envisioning, your own imagining. You cannot supply it, you’ve been trying to supply it and you’ve been missing Reality.
Hey, if abandoning your attempts to supply the meaning to everything, even though it means giving up control that you think you have—control that you think you ought to have and control that you think your sanity depends upon—if giving that up means you might have the experience of Atonement, that you might have the experience of returning to your sanity and experiencing what you’ve been calling the Kingdom of Heaven in which there is no sin, sickness or death, in which there is no conflict, then why the hell not try giving up the attempt to supply the meaning yourself! Or, as some of you would prefer I say, “Why in Heaven’s name not abandon it!”
You can practice the mechanics of the holy instant, and will learn much from doing so. Yet its shining and glittering brilliance, which will literally blind you to this world by its own vision, you cannot supply. And here it is, ALL in this instant, complete, accomplished, and given WHOLLY.
You can’t supply it yourself, but here it is in its entirety—in an instant. That means that it’s not something you have to earn that takes time, but the minute you completely step aside, the minute you completely abandon willfulness, all of it in its entirety replaces the ignorance you’ve been suffering from, not just as an idea, but as an experience—the undistorted experience of Reality. And again, I must say that it’s available to you in any given moment of any day you’re in the middle of, or any night.
Everything essential to your Awakening is present at any given moment. All of Reality in its entirety is available to you in a [snaps fingers] split second … when what? When you genuinely insist upon stopping whatever processes you’re in, whatever ego satisfying processes you’re in, and you say, “Father,”—you reach out, in other words, outside of your privacy, outside of your imagined separateness—“Father, what is the truth here?” Not only that, “What is the truth here about my brother? My brother deserves more than he’s experiencing. He deserves to experience his Birthright, which is more than what he’s experiencing. Help me mentor him by revealing to me how to be in his presence. I don’t know how to do it. The holy instant has not yet happened to me, therefore, I’m going to stop trying to create the holy instant. I’m going to shut up. And in the silence I’m going to let You fill me with Yourself, which will constitute the holy instant. Why? [deep sigh] Because my brother has become more important to me, than me.”
See, I’m still … and the Course is still keeping your nose to the grindstone, but a little more sweetly and a little bit more gently than last week. It’s a little bit more palatable. But the definiteness with which I spoke last week needs to be something that you bring into your willingness to mentor or to be a philanthropist, as an expression of what is fundamental to your very being. Because someone has now told you that it is fundamental to your being and that your calling it forth by your giving your attention to it, is the means by which you escape sin, sickness and death, conflict, suffering and Wake up so that what the words “Kingdom of Heaven” mean is an actual experience and not just an incredible idea.
Start now to practice your little part in separating out the holy instant. You will receive very specific instructions as you go along. To learn to separate out this single second, and begin to experience it as timeless, is to begin to experience yourself as NOT separate. Fear not that you will not be given help in this. God’s Teacher …
… the Holy Spirit, that which is nothing more than your right Mind…
… and His lesson will support your strength. It is only your weakness that will depart from you in this practice, for it is the practice of the power of God in you.
You see, it, the practice of the power of God, is the practice of letting God in and through you by saying, “Father, show me your perspective. Show me how You would have me be, show me how to reflect all that is true about You and therefore, all that is Real about me, so that I no longer engage in the expression of things that are not Real about me, and as a result, blind myself to my capacity to mentor—to my capacity to be a full-time philanthropist.
Use it but for one instant…
… use what? The power of God.
Use it but for one instant, and you will never deny it again. Who can deny the Presence of what the universe bows to, in appreciation and gladness? Before the recognition of the universe which witnesses to It, your doubts MUST disappear.
I know, be careful of this: [whiny voice] “I can’t do anything about my doubts. I just have them. They consume me sometimes … they overwhelm me sometimes …” Oh-h-h … but I’m telling you that doubt is something you practice! Doubt isn’t something that overwhelms you. Doubt is an inner experience of … or it is an inner expression of weakness that is clearly calculated because you believe that you are limited and you believe that you don’t know everything and you believe that you are vulnerable because of it. And your clear belief, which you have commitment to, is pure imagination. It’s not the truth. You are the Christ employing ignorance consciously. Got it?
You are Christs’ employing ignorance consciously and you come back to the rules that you have made up that say you have not the means to be philanthropic. You have not the means to give, because you lack. You do not have, and as a result, you are vulnerable.
You use those thoughts, you use those words almost like a mantra. You weave a spell on yourself using those kind of words. They’re not true! Stop using them! I’m not saying make up some new words that are positive. I’m saying stop doing what isn’t true. Abandon your independent stance and ask the Holy Spirit in you—which is nothing more than your right Mind—to reveal Its place in you, as you in your right Mind, so that you can abandon these conscious practices of ignorance.
Before the recognition of the universe which witnesses to It…
… the holy instant …
… your doubts MUST disappear.
“Oh-h-h … wonderful, they’re going to be wiped out of my experience. I will no longer be subject to them. They’ll no longer overwhelm me.” No! [laughing] They will disappear … why? Because you’re going to abandon their use. You’re going to abandon practicing ignorance [whining voice] and creating for yourself an experience of helplessness. That’s pure bullshit!
Is it because you’re malicious that you do it? No! It’s because it’s an interesting thing to do. It can be a fascinating thing, a fascinating use you can put your mind to because it creates these false experiences that are fearful, fearsome, and which can cause in you a feeling of trying to overcome them and maybe doing it. But you don’t have to do these interesting things that cause you to be unconscious of Reality, unconscious of the Kingdom of Heaven right where you’re calling it the world and the universe that came from the big bang and had not a thing to do with God. So …
Before the recognition of the universe which witnesses to It, your doubts MUST disappear.
Your practice of doubt must be given up. And I don’t mean that as a command: [stern voice] You must give them up! When you yield enough for the influx of revelation to occur, the practice of doubt will disappear. It must disappear … it must disappear because it can no longer hold interest for you. It can no longer be fascinating to you because the experience of Reality is so much more full and satisfying than the experience of ignorance that causes fear, that causes you to feel the need to overcome it, and in overcoming it, prove to yourself that you as an independent entity exist and are real!
The next section is called:
Littleness Versus Magnitude2
Be not content with littleness, but be sure you understand what littleness is, and why you could never BE content with it. Littleness is the offering you gave YOURSELF. You offered this in place of magnitude, and you ACCEPTED it.
That’s what I just said. You have made up this picture of you. You’ve made little rules. The little rules cause you to feel insecure, cause you to have doubts, which you practice very consciously by rehearsing these rules you first made up. And as a result, the picture you have of yourself is not one of a philanthropist, is not one of a mentor.
You offered this in place of magnitude, and you ACCEPTED it.
In your acceptance of it, it was like signing, sealing and delivering it into law as that which is governing you, even though you are governing yourself by their use, by their conscious practice.
Everything in this world is little because it is a world made out of littleness, in the strange belief that littleness can content you.
You have taken the Kingdom of Heaven and redefined it, causing that which was infinite to become less than it was—little.
Everything in this world …
… you have made up by means of your definitions …
… is little because it is a world made out of …
… what? The littleness of you, [whiny voice] who couldn’t possibly be a philanthropist or a mentor.
… in the strange belief that littleness can content you.
Well, you say, “Why would I say that littleness would content me?” Well, the way you say littleness will content you, is that littleness causes you to feel incompetent, invulnerable, and creates in you a desire to overcome that, and going for the carrot, attempting the impossible, makes you feel good about yourself. And so, you stick with the ignorance and you go after the carrot add infinitum. And thus, littleness contents you because of the hit you get from trying to overcome it. That’s how.
When you strive for anything in this world with the belief that it will bring you peace, you are belittling yourself, and blinding yourself to glory.
Listen to this:
Littleness and glory are the choices open to your striving and your vigilance.
They’re the two choices you have—littleness and glory.
You will always choose one at the EXPENSE of the other. Yet what you do not realize, each time you choose, is that your choice is your evaluation of YOURSELF.
Philanthropist … mentor … [whiny voice] or the poor little somebody in need, that would just love to find a good mentor or philanthropist who would let you be poor and tiny and not do anything to disturb it, except to ease it by giving you a little money or by helping you to be more comfortable in your littleness, by giving you some inspiring ideas that make your tolerance of littleness something that speaks well of you and contributes to your spiritual development and the refinement of your soul. You see. But that’s not philanthropy and that’s not mentoring.
Choose littleness and you will not have peace, for you will have judged yourself unworthy of it.
Not only will you have judged yourself unworthy of it, you will have denied that it’s available to you as an experience. You will, by your refusing to acknowledge what you divinely are, block the experience of the truth about you.
Choose littleness and you will not have peace, for you will have judged yourself unworthy of it. And whatever you offer as a substitute …
… whatever definitions you come up with, whatever justifications you find for taking care of number one, instead of shifting to gifting …
… is much too poor a gift to satisfy you.
It won’t really satisfy you because it won’t uncover to you your invulnerability, it won’t uncover to you an experience of being that no longer includes sin, sickness or death.
It is essential that you accept the fact, and accept it gladly, that there is no form of littleness that can EVER content you. You are free to try as many as you wish…
… and you all have …
… but all you will be doing is to delay your homecoming. For you will be content only in magnitude, which is your home.
And so, this brings us back to the initial questions: Are any of you able to identify yourselves as mentors or philanthropists? Are any of you able to identify yourselves as that which has as its purpose and function and which is the derivative of Meaning for your existence, the capacity to give and the willingness to actually do it, by caring enough to relate to your brothers and sisters in a way that allow you at the end of the day to say, “Yes, there is one, or there are five, who have benefited from my involvement with them because I was willing to do the two step and say, ‘Yes, Father, I yield to You and Your perspective—fill me with It. I am willing to take the time to be with my brother in a way that allows the truth to come forth, even if it is a little bit strenuous, even if it takes time up from other things I would rather be doing. I am beginning to realize that the other things I would rather be doing don’t involve involvement with my brother, and therefore, do not involve anything that is essential to my Waking up. The other things I would rather do, contribute in no way to my salvation.’”
Now, I’m not just sitting here throwing around spiritual words because we’re having a spiritual talk, I’m using words that you use. And even if you might not use them often, the word salvation has meaning for you and you know that sooner or later you wish to experience salvation. But at the moment you can take a little more suffering, it’s not quite an urgent thing yet to you to squarely look your salvation in the face and find out what you need to do to have it.
Now, I’m going to back up here.
Start now to practice your little part in separating out the holy instant. You will receive very specific instructions as you go along.
Don’t let your ego say, “Well, Paul is lucky, he is in touch with his Guidance. I’m not in touch with my Guidance. Oh, and I’ve tried to get in touch with my Guidance, but nothing has happened.” Okay, and there you are weaving your tale, there you are weaving a story that will become a rule. And you’ll use it [whining] to practice doubt with commitment. And yet, all it is, is a story you made up that isn’t true, and that you can’t be bound by and you’re not bound by. And the only thing that causes you to seem to be bound by it is the unrelenting commitment you make to that fairytale, that story.
You will receive very specific instructions as you go along.
But you know what? In order to get the instructions, you’ve got to be willing to say, “Hey, I am going to become a mentor. Hey, I’m going to become a philanthropist. I’m going to change my mental framework so that my every day includes a desire to notice needs that my brother’s having. And where I can be of help, I will set down what I’m doing and help—involve myself with them as I am led by virtue of my listening.
You know, I could say it’s a shame that one has to have such a long book to prove to you the truth of the simplicity of the “Golden Rule.” But we don’t have to say it’s a sad thing … it’s a wonderful thing that you have ceaseless, ongoing, unending justification being provided to you, as long as you’re reading this book for finding the truth of the simple fact, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
Be a philanthropist. Be Love. And do it by not imagining what being loving is, do it by stopping in your tracks, silencing your willfulness, your intent to be the originator of your thoughts and your awarenesses, and reach out to, if not God, the Holy Spirit, which is the Voice for God as it happens, but which is at the bottom line that which is nothing more than your right Mind, and lean into it so that you might become integrated once again and come back into your right Mind and bless your brother and Wake up.
I love you all. And enjoy the week you have that is full of moment-by-moment opportunities to practice philanthropy, to mentor and to Wake up. And I look forward to being with you next week.