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26.1 It is often spoken of with some amazement that I lived a short life, preached for only a small part of it, traveled not very far, had few possessions or influential friends. We have talked before of the tragedy you feel when anyone dies young. You each have some notion of what you believe a full life to be. For some of you it would include marriage and children, for others career, religious commitment, or creative endeavors. Some would think of travel and adventure, friendships, or financial security. Most of you will think of having a long life.
26.2 Many of you question the line between fate and accomplishment. Are some chosen for greatness? Others for mediocrity?
26.3 Few recognize the tragedy in the life of a person, except in instances of great dichotomy, perhaps best expressed in the life of the tragic hero. This observance of tragedy in life occurs only when the observation is also made of the greatness, the glory, in the life. Without the recognition of the glory of life, there is no recognition of tragedy until the life has ended. In contrast, in the life of the tragic hero, excluding those who are posthumously given such a title, the tragedy is most often considered a fall from greatness. It is seen in the allure of myths where those who associate themselves too closely with the gods are punished for such folly. Such fear of greatness and glory, of the possibility of a fall from greatness and glory, results in many tragedy-less lives. “Nothing ventured, nothing gained,” is an axiom for such lives. Fear of the “fall” is a primal fear, the first fear, the fear behind all such axioms.
26.4 Again I offer my life as the example life and reiterate the message expressed in A Course in Miracles: The true meaning of the crucifixion is that it was the last and final end to all such fears and myths. All such fears were taken to the cross with me and banished in the resurrection of the glory that is ours.
26.5 Do not be afraid. My brothers and sisters in Christ, realize that there is no cause for fear. You cannot fly too closely to the sun. You cannot be deceived any longer by tales of woe or of fallen heroes. Your story is one of glory. Your greatness can no longer be denied, unless you deny it.
26.6 Do you feel beautiful and prized and worthy? Then so shall you be.
26.7 No fear is greater than the fear of meaninglessness. And, as stated before, the quest for meaning is how you have described your purpose here. To have no meaning to attach to your life is the tragedy you see within it and attempt to keep hidden from yourself. This fear goes hand in hand with your fear of the fall, for if you were to attempt to assign the meaning to your life that you think it should have, a fall would surely await you, at least in your imaginings. You are thus caught in a double bind, living a life you feel is devoid of meaning and letting fear keep you from seeking the meaning you would give it. You feel no inherent sense of purpose, no grace, no meaning beyond what you would give to your own endeavors.
26.8 This is what we now leave behind as we seek to become involved with life. I say we because I am with you and will not leave your side. I say we because your first involvement is involvement with Christ, an involvement that links us in oneness and glory once again. I say we because we are life. I say we because we cannot live love apart from one another.
26.9 You do not yet, but will soon realize the happiness that is ours. Your mind can just not accept that happiness as well as meaning is due you through no effort of your own. Scenes of your life play through your mind that “prove” that you are neither inherently happy, nor your life inherently meaningful. Your reliance on these scenes and memories must be broken before my words can reach your mind and begin to replace these scenes with new ones. Until that time is upon you, let my words touch your heart.
26.10 You who struggle to understand what these words say and what they might mean, who strive to find the clues to what they ask you to do, will find it difficult to cease your struggle and your striving. You find it almost impossible still to believe effort is not called for—that what your heart but wishes for could simply come true through your acceptance of these words. But I am prepared to make it easy for you.
26.11 You who have so sought happiness without finding it, rejoice. It is not lost. It does not require you to define it or put a name to it before it can be yours. Is this not what you have cried about in frustration? Have you not long sought to put a name on happiness? Have you not long lamented that if you knew what would bring you happiness you would surely pursue it? Have you not long stated that if you knew what would bring meaning to your life you would surely do it? Have you not long wished to know your purpose? To be given a goal that would fulfill the longing in you? Have you not prayed for signs or read books that have promised you a series of steps to take to get where you want to go, only to realize you know not where that is?
26.12 And have you not become impatient with advice, with teachers, and with courses of study? Have you not felt at the limit of your patience with instruction? Have you not felt the call to live growing stronger in you by the day? Are you not anxious to say: “Tell me what to do and I will do it?” Are you not ready for certainty above all else? Are you not ready to be done with studying and to begin with living? Have you not become increasingly convinced that you have not been living, and wondered what it is you have been doing? Have you not grown weary of what passes for life in your world? Have you not wished you could throw out all the thoughts and worries that fill your mind and begin anew?
26.13 Are you not simply ready to be done with the way things have been and to begin a new way? Are you not ready to listen to a new voice?
26.14 All this frustration and impatience has been building. This buildup has been necessary. Now, like an explosion waiting to happen, it only needs a trigger to be released. With its release the new can begin.
26.15 This Course is but a trigger. These words the prelude to the explosion. It is as if you have been waiting for someone to whisper: Now! The whisper has come. The time is now.
26.16 Can you let the worries of today leave your mind? Can you let the disappointments of yesterday go and be no more? Can you let the planning for the future cease? Can you be still and know your Self?
26.17 This is perhaps disappointing to you, but it is all that is required. If you could truly succeed at doing this for one instant, you would experience all that is holy and be forever new.
26.18 You may experience disappointment at these words, and feel as if you have been waiting to be invited to a party and that the invitation hasn’t come. This is because you are ready for the next step, the step of being engaged with life. The step of living from love. And I assure you, there is no need to sit about and wait for the time of the celebration to come. This is the invitation to the celebration. This is the invitation to greet this day with no worry, disappointment, or planning. This is the invitation to greet your Self and to find your Self within this day.
26.19 It requires no new plans. It asks not that you make any decisions. It asks not that you do anything new. This is an invitation from love to love. It asks only that you be open and allow giving and receiving as one to take place. It asks only that you be unoccupied with the old so that the new may arrive. It asks only that you listen to your heart and let your Self be heard.
26.20 I cannot tell you here what you will hear. How can I, when each of you will hear the answer of your heart? The calling of love to love inviolate? The answer that only you can hear. There is no mold, no form, no stock answer. This is why all answers have disappointed you in the past. Your answer is not the same as any other. No matter how filled with wisdom one person’s answer may be, it is not yours.
26.21 You are a thought of God. An idea. This thought, or idea, is what you seek. It can be found only at its source. Its source is love, and its location is your own heart.
26.22 Think a moment of a novel or movie with no plot. This would be the same as saying that there was no idea brought to completion within the pages or on the film. In God’s idea of you is all that is known about you. God’s idea of you is perfect, and until now your form has been but an imperfect representation of God’s idea. In God’s idea of you is the pattern of the universe, much as within a novel, movie, piece of music, invention or artistic idea is the completion of the pattern that will make that idea a masterpiece. An idea is irrevocably linked with its source and one with its source. There was no God separate from you to have this idea of you. You were birthed in unison with God’s idea of you.
26.23 This does not need to be understood, but only accepted to the extent you can accept it. This is necessary because of your reliance on a God who is “other” than you for the provision of your answers. Acceptance of your birth in unison with God’s idea of you is acceptance of your Self as co-creator of the pattern of the universe, acceptance of the idea or the story that is you. Can you not see that you were birthed into a place in the pattern of God’s creation? Or that you not only can know but have always known of this place?
26.24 This is not a place of physical form but a place of holiness, an integral place in the pattern that is oneness with God. It is a place you have never left but that you long for, believing that you know it not. Your life here is much like a search for your story. Where will this chapter lead? What will the end be like? Was one event a mistake and another a blessing in disguise? You seek to know your story’s table of contents, or at least a brief outline. Where does your life fit in the larger picture? And yet, you realize that—like reading a story—when the end is reached and all is known, the story is over except in memory and reflection and perhaps in speculation. What might a sequel reveal?
26.25 This viewing of your life as a story is what you do. You spend each day in review or speculation. What has happened and what will happen next? You attempt to rewrite previous chapters and to cast all the parts and plan all the events of the next. This is, in effect, your attempt to control what you do not believe you created, and what you feel deprived of creating. As a being birthed by a thought of God, you grew simultaneously with God’s thought. You knew your place in the pattern of creation from the outset. A full life is quite simply a fulfillment of that thought and that pattern. The only way to know it is to think it once again. The only way to think it once again is to be wholehearted, for a split mind and heart do not think clearly.
26.26 Being whole is being present. Being whole is being all you are. Being whole is being present as all you are. When this occurs you are All in All, One in being with your Father.
26.27 I fulfilled my story, my pattern, the idea of me that came from the thought of God. In doing so, I restored unity, oneness with God. I ushered in the new way that you are now longing to adopt. I ushered in a time of being.
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