March 25 1991 Monday
Raj: You are beginning to get the idea, Paul. It is not necessary for you to understand. It is only necessary for you to be with me and, as Susan said, be the Door.
You have no idea What stands behind the Threshold pressing, literally, to move through. But you are feeling the pressure. You are feeling the presence of It. I will tell you something: The Door has no definition aside from its function. The Threshold has no definition aside from its function. And its function is to be that Place over which or through which God is Self-expressed.
I fully understand the fact that your training, and, indeed, the approach of those around you is that you are accountable, and therefore you need to be able to account for yourself. But, I will tell you something, Paul: You cannot account for being the Door, for being the Threshold, if the function of the Threshold is not occurring. If the movement of Being is not moving over It, It can’t be accounted for. And so it is essential for you to drop the conditioning which says that you must be able to account for yourself as a Threshold before It fulfills Its function. After It fulfills Its function, there is no need to account for It. And even if others then want an accounting, which would require the Threshold to cease performing Its function so that It could define or account for Itself, you must realize that what is being required cannot be done. Therefore you must neglect to respond, and you must neglect to feel that some sort of response ought to be able to be forthcoming.
You do not amount to anything on your own, because you don’t exist on your own! Therefore, you cannot account for yourself on your own. The demand of others for you to account for yourself on your own, so that they can continue to believe that they can account for themselves on their own, must not be played into. It is, again, like accounting for where your lap goes when you stand up.
When we do a Workshop, you do not attempt to conceptualize ahead of time what will happen. You do not require yourself to understand the “plan,” as though there were a plan. And the Workshops happen. And they are beautiful. They are meaningful. They are transformational. Why then would you attempt to understand ahead of time what being Fourth-dimensional will mean, and how you will play Pictionary or engage in any other activity?
Life is not going to unfold according to any preconceptions. You could make assumptions as to what would be covered in a Workshop, but it would be a fruitless expenditure of energy, because you, from a personal, private standpoint, cannot govern the movement of Life, and what will really spontaneously and actually occur will occur in spite of your preconceptions.
I want to point out to you that the antsy-ness which you are experiencing is the feeling of the activity of the Movement “waiting” to move over the threshold. But if you are insisting upon comprehending who you are as the Door, you will be inclined, as something separate from Its function, to act on your own.
The suggestion that you ought to be able to account for yourself will promote acts of accounting for yourself without engaging in the function of your Being. You will simply continue the attempt to function as an ego—except that your ego is crumbling. Where in the past you had been able to account for yourself pretty well, any attempts you now make to account for yourself will be disastrous—absolutely unsuccessful. Therefore, do not bother. Do not waste your time.
Paul: I am experiencing silence. Am I blocking, or are you simply not saying anything?
Raj: I am not saying anything.
Paul: Well, I’m still stuck. I mean by that that the demands confronting me are still confronting me. Do I just sit here and wait until you say something again, and feel confident that the silence, and my sitting here in the silence, is an appropriate use of my time when I don’t seem to be addressing the very severe demands?
Raj: No, Paul. You give permission to Know by desiring to Know. And the manner in which you find it easiest to Know something is to ask a question.
Paul: I guess the simplest question would be, can you speak to the issue of accountability?
Raj: With pleasure.
The only things one can be accountable for are his own creations. And the only one someone can be accountable to, is someone other than himself, because left to oneself one simply experiences the fullness of Life as It unfolds Itself—one experiences the fullness of his Being as It unfolds Itself. Therefore, Paul, accountability is an ego dynamic brought into play by the belief that one is a personal, private creator, separate from the Movement of Creation, Itself, which only God is responsible for.
Now, it is essential to understand that it takes two to play the game of Accountability. In the Allegory in the third chapter of Genesis, Eve tasted the apple and found it good to be eaten. There was not immediately shame or guilt. It was when she offered it to Adam and he ate of it that they found themselves, together, experiencing shame. In other words, Eve, in her relationship with the Father, was not judged of the Father. This is an important point. There were not two present, acting in concert in disobedience to the Father. There was just the Father and Eve. There was the Father and his Self-expression.
Guilt is an impossible experience in one’s relation with the Father, even if one seems to be acting independent of the Father. You see, at this point a joining in the act of disobedience had not occurred, and therefore a joining in agreed-upon disobedience had not occurred. The only relationship existing, still, was that of the Father and His Self-expression, which was still pure. No joining in delusion had occurred because the Father cannot relate to his Self-expression in a deluded manner. Just as there is no guilt in the presence of the Father, there also is no experience of shame. And this is why, as one approaches the Father, no matter how far off track that one seems to have gotten, there is an absolving of guilt and shame.
I will tell you something: It is only the sense of ego joined with another sense of ego in which the experience of shame or guilt occurs and seems to be real. Only when Adam partook of the apple—which really meant when he agreed with Eve to act at odds with the Father’s Will—did the experience of shame and guilt and the call for forgiveness come into play.
It is not the Father Who blames. It is not the Father Who holds you or anyone else in a state of loss of grace. It is not the Father Who hands down a judgment. It is not the Father who exacts penalty. What does this mean, then? It means that egos join together in creating the definition and judgment of shame and guilt which holds everyone guilty. It is the joining of egos which results in the exaction of a penalty to be paid before one’s Birthright and the Kingdom of Heaven can be experienced again.
Do you see why forgiveness is essential to Awakening, and why it is central to the Course?14 It is the withdrawal of judgment, by means of which you hold your fellow man in bondage to his separated sense of himself from the Father. You see, men hold each other accountable. It is suggested that you are held accountable for your good works, that you need to handle yourself in a way whereby you can account for yourself as worthwhile, and dependable, and meaningful, and contributive, et cetera. But this is just a cover-up for the accountability for your sins, for the negative. After all, if you can have enough gold stars in your portfolio, if you can have enough diplomas, if you can have enough credits, et cetera, then it is by means of this that you absolve yourself of the unstated, untalked-about accountability for your sins, for the mutually-agreed-upon shame which came into play by mutually agreeing to act at odds with the Will of the Father.
So, it has become a worthy endeavor to handle yourself in a way which allows you to account for yourself with pride, rather than having to account for yourself with the feeling of guilt. But, I will tell you something: It doesn’t undo the fundamental accountability for guilt which was caused by, and continues to be maintained by, all attempts to be a good separated human being, instead of letting go of the mutual agreement with other egos to act as though there is not a God; to act as though, indeed, you are bastards, and that you are not the direct and only Self-expression of the Father.
Graduation, literally, is the process by which you do release that fundamental mutual agreement, and the shame, guilt, and associated penalties which are inherent in it. Graduation is when you say, “Thy Will be done, not mine,” and you never, ever again, rely upon your sense of capacity to have a will of your own. You desire to know the Will of the Father and nothing else, which you do by means of Listening—as you are doing at this very moment as I speak.
Again, as you have found, this puts you in the middle of an experience which you cannot account for, and which others’ demands for you to “account for” cannot be met. You must understand the dynamics of this coercion to be held accountable—the coercion from your own conditioned thinking and the coercion of the conditioned thinking of those around you. You must come back at least to the point in the Allegory of Eve having eaten the apple, having been disobedient, but not having joined in relationship yet with any one or anything other than the Father. Even though she was, shall I say, exploring the act of disobedience, she was still held in the perfection of her inseparable Oneness with the Father, because there had been no joining with another, which was essential in order to establish a “real” sense of separation. At this point Eve had not embraced and limited herself to the three-dimensional-only frame of reference.
Now, when you are relating to me alone, you are not relating to a person, a personality, a finite sense of self-hood. You are, as I have said before, relating to That which is standing as the Door also, in full commitment. And thus, you experience in me the Father’s Will expressed. So, you are, through me, in direct relationship with the Father.
In your willingness to withdraw from mutual agreement with other egos, and to the degree that you are willing to make commitment to withdraw from your best sense of being a human being—a private mind—and join with me, you are joining with the Father, which moves you back into that point in the Allegory where Eve was only existing in relationship to the Father, but had acted at odds with His Will. This brings you back into your innocence! Her disobedience is not what made her guilty. It was the joining in disobedience with another, other than the Father, which produced not only the illusion of shame and guilt, but the whole distorted experience of the Garden of Eden, the Kingdom of Heaven, and Who she really was as God-expressed.
The demand for accountability is a demand for you to declare yourself and your credibility. But you have no such credibility, and you have no such self. Your presence is the declaration of God’s Presence. That is the Fact about you, and that cannot be accounted for, humanly speaking. That cannot be accounted for within the scope of the definitions which the separated sense of self has applied to every aspect of the Kingdom of Heaven, and thus create a confusing and distorted experience of It.
Now, we are going to take this to an even finer point, here.
As I have explained, Eve’s eating of the apple did not make her a sinner. It did not cause her to experience separation from the Father. Therefore, her individual act of disobedience did not create illusion! Therefore, your individual acts of disobedience have not created illusion, and have not caused you to be a sinner, a lost, fallen child of God! The sense of sin and the experience of illusion arise entirely out of a joining with another in agreement to act at odds with the Father—in other words, to have a mutual intent which is incongruent with the Father’s Will. It is in this mutual agreement, and not in the acts, themselves, that all illusion has taken on apparent substance and form.
Do you understand what this means? It means that no one is responsible for the illusion. The illusions is, we will say, the mental miasma arising out of a sense of comeraderie, coming forth from a totally false sense of somehow, by virtue of the joining, being able to actually be disobedient to the Father.
It is like two children, hiding out behind the shed, making a cigarette out of corn silks, and sitting there in delight saying, “My father will kill me,” “My mother would kill me if she knew what we were doing,” when the mother and father are absolutely incapable of even becoming angry because their nature is love and it is incomprehensible to them that this silly behavior behind the shed is just cause for judgment of any kind, or that it calls for anything other than just slight amusement at the fantasy of the children.
But, nevertheless, the children, believing their own fantasies, can develop a sense of guilt and fear, which alter their behavior toward their parents and strengthen the behavior of the shared illusion, the shared negative fantasy. Although their fantasy is not congruent with reality at all, they carry a sense of guilt which their all-wise parents are not laying upon them. But because of the fearful face they have projected from their childish fantasy upon their parents, they begin to fear the retribution, and the strength of their relationship with their parents becomes replaced with the strength of the relationship they have established between each other by virtue of their shared negative fantasy.
You can see, hereby, that they are suffering not from their individual acts of smoking the corn silks, but are suffering from the faith they have in their shared experience of fantasy, their shared agreement to feel guilty.
As time passes, they will begin to define each other by means of their mutual agreement that they are guilty, having become estranged from their parents by virtue of their fantasized imagination of their parents’ anger and retribution. Then, whenever they might have an inspired feeling of their worth and express it, the other will say, “Who do you think you are? We both know that you’re guilty. We both know that we are guilty.” And then, if the going gets tough and one of them says, “I think I want to invest less energy in the relationship which is constituted of our mutual ignorance, and I want to go Home, I want to renew my relationship with my father and my mother,” that one’s own conditioning, together with reinforcement from the other partner, will say, “You cannot do that. Too much water has gone under the bridge. Your accumulated actions, based upon your guilt, will make you absolutely unacceptable.”
Now, even though actions aren’t occurring out behind the shed, the mother and the father in their wisdom and love say, with a smile on their face, “Their suffering is meaningless, and they are welcome home, and we love them as we have all along.”
The point is that each one, every single individuality, really only has one relationship, and that relationship is with the Father, Mother God. And any acts of willfulness have not constituted a sin and cannot cause a sense of separation, and do not create shame, guilt, or the necessity of a penalty being paid. Therefore, no one is responsible for the sense of shame, or of guilt, or of the necessity for penalty. No one is responsible for the deluded sense of the Kingdom of Heaven.
Even when two individualities come together and mutually agree to be disobedient, it is not the individuals who create the sense of shame, and guilt, and penalty due a sinner, because they individually remain exactly what they Are—the direct expression of the Father, sinless—although penalty and suffering seem real. It is all the result of mutually-agreed-upon guilt and attempts from within that framework of guilt to account for oneself intelligently, lovingly, reasonably, so as to overcome the guilt which is only seeming to exist from within the mutual agreement. You understand that a mutual agreement is an intellectual phenomenon, not a real one.
Indeed, the veil that is to be lifted, is the veil of this mutual agreement—this snickering, gleeful, fearful, thrilling mutual agreement to imagine that one can actually disobey the Father and lose His love, when the Father is Love and is incapable of anything else. So, Graduation and Awakening amount to withdrawing from the mutual agreement, neglecting to bother to account for oneself—either in order to equal one’s inner concept of being a good person or to equal others’ definitions of what equals a good person—and, rather, listening within to hear the Father’s Voice as It moves across the threshold, moves through the Door that you Are, and letting the chips fall where they may.
No one individual can be accountable for illusion if illusion has arisen out of a mutual agreement to indulge in fantasy and believe that the fantasy is more real than Reality.
A Course in Miracles